"Of all tyrannies, a tyranny exercised for the good of its victims may be the most oppressive. It may be better to live under robber barons than under omnipotent moral busybodies. The robber baron’s cruelty may sometimes sleep, his cupidity may at some point be satiated; but those who torment us for our own good will torment us without end, for they do so with the approval of their consciences." –C.S. Lewis
I know I've talked a little about abortion and smoking before, but that was more about graphic images being used. This time, I want to talk about the law, and restrictions, and minors.
There's a movement in many states banning the use of any tobacco product (including smokeless tobacco) on any hospital or state college campuses - anywhere on the campus, not just in the dorms or in hospitals or by the doors, but anywhere on the campus. I understand that somewhere in Canada (I think), they are banning tobacco use on certain streets. Proponents say, "We're helping people quit that want to quit", and "We haven't had one complaint", and "We're doing this to cut down on secondhand smoke, to encourage tobacco users to quit and to discourage nonusers from taking up the habit."
How many tyrannical practices can you spot in that last paragraph?
It constantly amazes me that a society which is becoming more restrictive in smoking (and fat, calories, sugar, etc.), is simply laissez-faire when it comes to abortion. A society that actively fights against any restrictions being placed on abortion (including on minors having an abortion) is totally complicit in forcing more regulations through the system when it comes to any other part of your body. They say: "We're only trying to help." They say, "People don't realize how destructive this habit(s) are!"
Just for fun, here's a few links concerning restrictions on smoking and restrictions on abortions. I'd actually like to see a map that combines the two of them, but I'm not that smart enough to do that.
List of smoking bans in the U.S.
Abortion in the U.S. - includes maps of differing restrictions
Restrictions on tattoo parlors
Why is it so different when it comes to abortion? It's shoved in our face by media and militant feminists that abortion isn't about anything else but a woman's 'right to choose' and affects no one else. Even if there were the most tenuous link from abortion to breast cancer or to infertility or other cancers or other problems - it is denounced and shouted down as 'myth', 'fear-mongering', or 'misogynistic hate speech'. And yet, even the most tenuous links from smoking (and other 'bad' habits) to health problems (which I don't doubt, much) is heralded as a 'breakthrough', 'definite scientific proof', etc.
Why can't we have laws that say: You can only have an abortion, in an ambulatory clinic, by a doctor and gee, I don't know, actually make sure those doctors are licensed, and insured? Why can't we make sure women know exactly what happens during an abortion, instead of turning a blind eye to organizations lying about what's happening and what exactly is getting aborted? I'm not saying that we shouldn't outlaw abortion completely, but what about tighter and tighter restrictions being put into place until practically abortion is non-existent? Isn't that what's being done to those who choose to smoke? Or hell - tax the shit out of anything to do with abortions or abortion services.
I get frustrated with the way our society (legislators?) seem to think that we, the people, need to be saved from ourselves and our bad decisions with everything under the sun EXCEPT when it comes to abortion. Then that's a personal decision. What sense does that make? It's not okay to smoke, in your own car, or by yourself in your own home, or in a park because it impacts your own body ----- and yet, it is okay to violently dismember, torture and kill another living being just because they happen to be in a woman's womb.
Why do we have to save smokers from themselves, but we can't save a woman from having her baby killed?
I know that it might be said that well, smokers cause 'x' amount of dollars to be put towards the health care system - and abortions don't. Are you sure about that? We aren't even sure (at least, not that I'm aware) of the long-term effects of an abortion (or multiple abortions) on a woman's body because it has become too much of a political hot potato for anyone to research. (I'd really like to know more about this, because I really don't, so I hope I'm not speaking out of turn.)
So what's the answer? I don't know. I think great strides are being made in some states; putting restrictions on abortions, like: ultrasound laws, fetal pain laws, etc. I think all of that is great. I also think with ultrasound technology is making great strides in changing hearts in this nation, along with movements like 40 Days for Life, Students for Life, Secular Pro-Life, Population Research Institute, Priests for Life, etc. are doing amazing jobs in 'the trenches'. It's just a matter of supporting those laws and those groups who are doing such amazing things, and to keep being involved.
If you've made it this far, thoughts?
(BTW, just an addendum, I remember that my state has restrictions on how old you can be to get a tattoo without a parental notification - it's 18. On the flip side of the parental notification coin, my state has no parental notification law for those under 18 who want/are forced to get an abortion. How fucked up is that?)