Abortion and Health Care Reform

Originally published in the December 2009 issue of The Gothic Times


Jersey City, New Jersey–It was the fall of 2006 when I entered New Jersey City University as a na’ve and persuadable college freshman; nevertheless, I possessed firm convictions, one of which inevitably surfaced in my Contemporary Moral Issues class, wherein we explored several ethical subjects, their controversies and their possible effects on societies.

Today, the debate still rages over the subject of abortion, as evidenced in the Stupak amendment in the House of Representatives health care reform bill, HR 3962.

The amendment, primarily sponsored by Representative Bart Stupak (D-Mich.), states, “no funds authorized or appropriated by this Act (or an amendment made by this Act) may be used to pay for any abortion or to cover any part of the costs of any health plan that includes coverage of abortion,” except

when a woman’s life is in danger or when the pregnancy follows from rape or incest.

By definition, to amend something involves a revision, which, in legislation, makes something more neutral, precise and informed. The Stupak amendment, which passed 240 to 194 in the House, certainly would appease middle-of-the-road, pro-life democrats. But conservative Republicans, who support privatized healthcare and insurance plans, correctly see it as cunning trickery by Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) and liberal leaders on Capitol Hill.

Conservative Republicans see the Stupak amendment as a way to swindle unsuspecting conservative members of Congress into endorsing the Democratic version of health care reform.

As a conservative, I oppose both abortion and HR 3962, its stated purpose is “[t]o provide affordable, quality health care for all Americans and reduce the growth in health care spending…”

In order to implement a bigger health care plan, however, the government must raise taxes and spend more, as is the case in more socialized countries around the world, thereby invalidating and contradicting the claim pushed by Democratic leaders that expanding health care could cut costs.

I am not arguing that our current system is perfect, but that it’s preferable.

Yes, it is expensive, but it’s exceptional. If, god-forbid, a pandemic spread throughout the classrooms of NJCU, every student would have access to immediate treatment at nearby hospitals.

Because the governments in socialized countries pay for healthcare, time in the doctor’s office must be rationed, causing throngs of people to impatiently wait for needed checkups, prescriptions, and medical advice. In America, our competitive system keeps health care prices in check and doctors readily available.

If the government truly cares for the health of women, it would prevent them from even having abortions, which are most often the result of irresponsible behavior and are followed by painful regret and deep depression. Sorrow, anger and shame are so pervasive in the lives of women who have had abortions that Post Abortion Syndrome (PAS) has been unofficially coined to describe the emotional condition.

In an anonymous statement meandering throughout the Internet, someone wrote, “Everyone who supported slavery was free. Everyone who supports abortion was born. That’s how oppression works. ‘They’re not really people!’ We’ve heard that before!”

Nearly fifty million babies have been murdered since Roe v. Wade, the 1973 U.S. Supreme Court case which ruled abortion to be legal. My case against abortion is uncomplicated and straightforward: since human life begins at conception, abortion is murder, and murder is utterly immoral.

The only way to avoid this contention is to assert that the unborn are not individuals. The trouble with that assertion is that the only “beings” that fetuses can be are human beings. Saying they are not is an irrational rationalization.

I highly oppose health care reform as proposed by the Democrats in both chambers of Congress, for it is, in actuality, costly and inefficient, and the attempt to create a compromise through the Stupak amendment is disingenuous. However, my conviction about abortion is stronger than that which opposes socialized medicine.

If health care reform passes in the House as well as the Senate, I would undoubtedly hope that the Stupak amendment is part of the package.

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