By Paige Moody
As I was approached to take part in this blog about feminism and youth, I found myself struggling to determine a topic. However, the longer I stirred on the matter; I began thinking of one controversial issue, healthcare for women. Although I am still a young woman at the age of 18, I find that annual visits to the doctor’s office are something of which I consider to be important. Early detection and other vital testing would, and has been proven to assist in saving the lives of women. Other issues in regards to the pro-life and pro-choice debate have been helpful as well. For example, Planned Parenthood has been providing reproductive health care to women and men for years. Although as of late, this organization has been attacked for providing care to women seeking abortions, especially as the presidential debate is currently occurring. State governments have become increasingly more designated as liberal or conservative, creating disturbances in the work that places like Planned Parenthood, have tried so hard to do. Many organizations have shut down, and in some states have left only one standing. Luckily, for those in my area, we still have numerous organizations that can help educate those who may be seeking it. Not only is education offered, but contraceptives are issued, and health services are provided to those with STDs. Abortion referrals do occur, although they are not the only things offered at such organizations.
Automatically, it is the controversial issue of pro-choice and life that is thought of. Everyone is allowed to have their own opinion on abortion. Frankly, I am pro-choice. I believe women deserve the right to make decisions in regards to their bodies. Although I completely comprehend not everyone may feel the same way, I do not find it appropriate individuals, and other groups of people penalize those organizations that provide other types of health services, including but not limited to abortion.
It is taught that Church and State are separated here in the Unites States. However, I am beginning to think otherwise. Religion has aided in defining some laws, notably in states that have begun eliminating clinics solely based on abortion. Why have they done this? They claim it is for budgetary issues. I find that it is a philosophic struggle between morals and ethics of which these states base from religion. Releasing clinics from their duties, is removing other products and information from those that could benefit from them. I prefer to keep religion and state separated, allowing me to make the appropriate decisions I see fit for my body.
To some, in the above situations, I may be lucky to have several clinics near me. Those who fight for these organizations to be closed down do not begin to see the strength of an individual for seeking help. With the stigma that can occur for making such a decision, one may be ostracized. I am not even sure if it is something I would be able to handle in my town. If these licensed places are to be closed, some women will look for other ways to gain the information or be provided such procedures. Illegal clinics are around, and provide false information to those in a vulnerable state. These places and disgusting acts can result in even further damage to our bodies. We should support women in their choice of healthcare and abortion. I have the right to express my concerns about my body and self. My body is simply that, mine. I urge all who read this editorial to stand up for our rights and support these organizations.