The double standard of reproductive rights

We’ve always been told that abortion is a women’s rights issue. That she has the right to control her own body. That she has the right to decide if and when she wants to become a mother, and abortion empowers her to direct the course of her future. We tell her that it’s normal to feel scared of the thought of parenting, and she has the ultimate say in what’s best for her.

But what do we tell men?

A man says he’s not ready to become a father. Well, too bad, he doesn’t get a choice. If he doesn’t want to pay child support for the next 18 years of his life, he’s a deadbeat dad. If he’s scared and unprepared, he just needs to “man up.” And if perhaps he does want to parent that child, he doesn’t have any rights — no means by which to protect his unborn son or daughter. He’s been taught that he doesn’t have a voice — “I’ll support whatever choice you make,” he parrots.

How is it fair that a woman has the right to choose if she wants to become a mother, but a man has no say in whether or not he wants to be a father?

This is one of the great injustices of our time. Not only are millions of unborn lives cast aside in the name of “choice,” but feminists have the brazen audacity to claim that women are still oppressed in North America when we literally have more rights under the law than men do. Yeah, you read that correctly. At this very moment, I have more rights than a man. I have more choices than a man. And that’s not okay! Feminists keep up the guise of wanting equality, but the reality is, we’re already past that.

Don’t get me wrong here, I’m not saying that men should be able to decide whether or not a woman gets an abortion. There’s already enough coercion, abandonment, and abuse, which are all major factors driving their female partners to desperation. What I do want to state is that abortion affects men too, and they should be allowed to speak about it and express their opinions. It takes two to make a baby, and conversations about reproductive rights typically disregard the role of the man. Moreover, feminist ideology promotes a dangerous double standard in which women have absolute authority over the unborn child and men simply have no reproductive rights whatsoever. Ironically, the movement which abhors purity and abstinence has limited men to that sole option. How many times have we heard “If you don’t want a baby, don’t have sex”? When it’s said to women, it’s “slut-shaming,” but feminists have no qualms about sending the same message to men.

Now there’s a very simple solution to this whole mess of double standards and reproductive rights. It’s pretty clear — the right to life is infinitely more important than all other rights. No one should have the right to decide whether or not someone else lives or dies. In a pro-life legal system which recognizes the scientific fact that life begins at conception, women and men remain equal. Neither of them are allowed the right to choose their child’s death. Both of them are responsible for their choices. Innocent lives are saved so that they too can walk through life and make their own choices. (You see, the only reason you have a right to choose is because your mother chose life).

In the end, anyone who truly desires equal rights for all human beings should support the pro-life movement. Women should have equal rights with men — no more, no less. People deserve the right to life — whether they are inside the womb or outside.

For more thoughtful discourse on the pro-life movement, read “Why I’m pro-life in a pro-choice society.”