Here’s the complicated reality in which we live: All life is not equal. That’s a difficult thing for liberals like me to talk about, lest we wind up looking like death-panel-loving, kill-your-grandma-and-your-precious-baby storm troopers. Yet a fetus can be a human life without having the same rights as the woman in whose body it resides. She’s the boss. Her life and what is right for her circumstances and her health should automatically trump the rights of the non-autonomous entity inside of her. Always.
This isn’t really that new. The abortion debate has always pitted the rights of the mother against those of the child. We all agree that, like all people, women have the right to privacy. Most of us also agree that all people have a right to live. Thus the conflict.
Commons sense tells us, however, that the right to privacy is a weak right. It is violated by the government everyday. A local judge can quickly and easily issue a search warrant that reduces your right to privacy to tatters. The government reads emails and listens to international calls. The government gropes you in airports and demands to know the source of every cent of income you receive. In a hundred ways every day, the government violates any reasonable right to privacy.
The right to your life, on the other hand, is a strong right. It should well be. It is he right from which all other rights emanate. Without a right to life, there are no rights.
That it is a strong right is evidenced by how difficult it is for the government to deny that right. It takes years, and sometimes decades, to execute a condemned killer. Many states won’t do it at all.
The argument the writer is making above is that the mother’s weak right to privacy supersedes the strong right to life of the child within her. That is a very difficult position to defend. In no other area of law does the right of one person to privacy mean that another must give up his right to live. To argue it in this case is logically ludacris.
Yet that is what the author does. She argues that every trivial right of the the mother trumps the most basic and fundamental right of the child. “Always.”
When abortion supporter start talking rights, they quickly end up in a logical cul de sac.