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Thursday, April 15, 2004

Sunny Days

It has finally gotten sunny after about a week straight of rain. And there are hopes it will actually get to average at least for this time of year. YAY!!! :-)

I just finished If I Forget Thee, Jerusalem, by William Faulkner. In proper Faulkner style and tradition, the last line of the book was:

"Women, shit," the tall convict said.

The book actually dealt with abortion quite a bit, but not in the story line about the tall convict(whose character I like a lot, btw). The main character, Harry Wilbourne, of the other story line(who I did not like) had extensive medical training, but was vehemently against performing abortions.

There was one situation in which he and his lover were living with a married couple and the woman became pregnant by the husband. As they were strapped financially, they did not want the burden of a baby, and so asked Wilbourne to perform an abortion on the woman. Harry repeatedly refused but then finally caved in and successfully performed the abortion. The couple left them pretty much directly afterwards, to go find work elsewhere.

The other situation was one in which Wilbourne's lover was impregnated by Wilbourne himself. This woman was very whimsical and impulsive rather like Clementine in Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind. She wanted an abortion for many reasons, but the overarching reason was to be able to love Wilbourne to the fullest for the rest of her life. She had already had two children and abandoned them to go travel with and love Harry. She also made appeals to financials and the pain of giving birth. He was of course against performing this abortion as well. He suggested giving the baby up for adoption and such. He put off the issue as long as he could, hoping he could wait long enough that he could convince her it was too late to perform the operation. Eventually he is convinced to perform the operation and she dies from it.

In my opinion, it is selfishness to have an abortion. Especially in the second situation we can see that did not want children to intrude on her life. Even the ones she already had she pushed away in favor of a random restlessness moving around the country with a wayward almost-doctor. She did not care to love anyone else and refused to let her life-style slip through her fingers, and so she wanted the easy way out. In the same way, the married couple, though less overtly selfish, put themselves first and did not think of the baby inside of the wife as a separate person.

No matter when you consider sentient life to begin, you may look at the situation like this. We must love life. In doing so we also should love the potential for life. Even if you don't believe real life to begin until after birth, the love for the potential of this baby I would say could surpass even the love of the baby itself.

With this in mind, love has at its core a certain selflessness. If you love the life brewing in your body(if you're a female) or your wife's body(if you're male) then you by right and righteousness put aside your own feelings and bring the life into the world to thrive, no matter what your situation may be. Putting a child up for adoption is certainly the harder way to go if you cannot afford to raise a child because of the connection you have to your child, but this is the most selfless act some women may have available to them.

These are just some thoughts I have on the matter based on this book. Have a wonderful day!

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