I wrote yesterday that the pilots of ABC's Defying Gravity had pro-life subplots, one realistic, one weird.
The realistic subplot involved a post-abortive mother imagining a baby crying. The unrealistic subplot purported that pro-lifers go so far as to oppose rabbit embryo research. The backdrop to all this was a world in 2052 where not only abortion is illegal but also pregnancy tests....
I don't want to give away the plot on the blog. But our position on the show is that abortion should be legal and the choice of the woman. But, too often, the Right to Lifers, paint the choice position as being glib, easy and insensitive. What we, in our storyline, say is that that simply isn't so. It's a tough, considered choice that can have repercussions - but it is a choice that must lie with the woman.
Thematically, this show is about man's self determination vs. the need to follow orders. It's about what we can't control vs. what we can - and the grey area in between. It's about the price we pay for both.
Zoe makes the decision to abort (against the govt) to achieve her dream. It isn't an easy decision (as right to lifers often portray it). It's an agonizing decision that Zoe will carry the rest of her life. But is was her decision to make. Not the government's....
Jen, in growing her bunny (making the choice of having her "baby"), will also pay a price. She'll endanger the crew and the ship for something that never should have been allowed to grow in the first place. (again, this is a choice message, not right to life).
We have a scene upcoming, where Ajay, who knows Zoe aborted a baby, will tell her directly that she made the right choice. Sometimes we need to make our own path and her path is in space. She should not worry about her aborted baby - Hindus believe the soul simply moves on to another body.
Even religious Paula will come to challenge her own right to life beliefs.
So... we explore the subject from a number of directions. I imagine we'll take heat from people on both sides of the issue - but they should certainly wait and see how the story develops.
All but the crying baby plot line smelled fishy (to borrow one of Obama's new favorite words) to me, like hyperbole. And if you bother to stay tuned, so shall it be.
That doesn't make much sense. I've never heard anyone who's anti-equal rights call abortion a complicated choice; they usually say that it's, like, totally no big deal, okay?
In the meantime, every pro-equal rights activist goes on about how hard that this is, the cruelty of it, the cruelty of the circumstances that lead to it, the nature of its long-term effects, et cetera. When the flip did we suddenly become the ones who portray it as "easy" and "glib?"
Anyways, I'm a little more than peeved at the fact that now they're openly admitting that we support human rights ("Right to Life," which, by the way, it more of a right than infanticide) and that that's a bad thing. Eh?
Am I the only one who's getting sick of asking for permission to do the right thing, of asking for permission to be treated like a human being, of asking for permission to care about others? Head desk as frustration level reaches new highs.Posted by: Vannah at August 7, 2009 11:04 AM
This is sick. Now I have heard how it's a difficult choice for the mother to make and how dare we try to make her feel guilty for that. They are already trying to legalize actual infanticide so that moms who have a postpartum mood disorder of any kind can "get off" by getting "treatment" in a mental ward basically forever. They actually have "baby" in quotations in their letter. How quickly they come to clarify to the pro-abortion bloggers their eagerness not to offend with the crying baby. Sick sick sick. I can only hope they cancel the show. It seems like a very lame plot and cheesy setting.Posted by: Amy Philo at August 7, 2009 11:21 AM
Vannah, can you give one quote, even one, where a pro-choice individual has portrayed the choice as anything OTHER than difficult? As opposed who SEVERAL pro-lifers I can think of, who simply dismiss abortive women who have no regrets as "sociopaths."Posted by: Human Abstract at August 7, 2009 11:32 AM
Jessica at Feministing would've made a very good Nazi.Posted by: Jasper at August 7, 2009 12:51 PM
I heard a crying baby after my abortion. I had nightmares of bloody babies and my bloody baby.
Is that one of the little "repercussions?"
Carla, my best friend had an abortion. She had been staunchly pro-choice up until that point. After the abortion, she had horrific nightmares and panic attacks, suffered from depression and intense grief, and eventually had a nervous breakdown.
This wasn't because of guilt being forced on her from outside. She was surrounded by pro-choice people who praised her decision as "the right one." It nearly destroyed her anyway.
Just another little "repercussion" of abortion.Posted by: Kayley at August 7, 2009 1:14 PM
What is this show supposed to be about, besides abortion? Abortion in outer space or something?Posted by: Marauder at August 7, 2009 1:47 PM
I so know those other little "repercussions" as well. I am so, so sorry about your friend and what she has been through. Is she better now? Has she found abortion recovery?
I will soon be a facilitator for Rachel's Vineyard and if you or your friend would like to email me, I would love to help. Go to the team button above and click on my name.
Also I have this
National Helpline for Abortion Recovery
Thank you for sharing that. It means a lot!!Posted by: carla at August 7, 2009 1:52 PM
Why is this "choice" so difficult? It's like getting a tooth pulled right??
Do you recall the video of undercover Lila Rose, where the Planned Parenthood clinic worker is talking about terminating the pregnancy to avoid stretch marks? Yeh, that's really making it seem like a difficult choice. You better just have this little surgery if you don't want unattractive stretch marks.
I like how, when it was something that MIGHT have conflicted with their gung-ho pro-choicer views, they had bees in all their bonnets (not to mention justifiable criticism of the show-I mean, c'mon-pregnancy tests are illegal? Really?), but now that the guy came out and kissed their butts, oh, the writer is such a talented guy, and I really do love his work! Give me a break. No wonder these people have such an insane view of pro-lifers and the pro-life cause. People come out of the woodwork to bend over backwards catering to their political agenda! They have no relationship with reality whatsoever because they don't HAVE to, and they like it that way.
I'm rather pissed at the guy, myself. Other than his resume reading like Linda's Top 10 List of Crappy Television Programming (yes, my rl name is Linda. I've gotten used to everyone else I know who shares a name with me being at least 20 years older than I am), I'm mad at him and the rest of the world for that matter for misrepresenting everything I stand for. Why did it have to be a choice between her being able to go to space and not killing her baby? TONS OF WOMEN EVERY DAY realize their career dreams and meet their self-actualizing goals AND have wonderful families or have at least given their beautiful children up for adoption so they don't make their own futures wonderful by robbing their own children of their futures. If it came down to me having a crappy rest of my life or taking the rest of someone else's life away from them, I guess I'd just have to learn to make the most of it. Whatever happened to common human decency and respecting your fellow man? And it's not like these are just strangers off of the street: THESE ARE THEIR OWN CHILDREN! *calming sigh* But I digress...
What's with the only pro-life chick on board being religious? Why can't SOMEONE, SOMEWHERE acknowledge non-religious and pro-life individuals? Why is everyone so hell-bent on perpetuating this inaccurate stereotype of pro-lifers as religious nuts pushing a biblical agenda? SOMEONE IN THE MEDIA OR POLITICS: REPRESENT ME! I EXIST!
Hey, Human Abstract, most of the time, I rather like ya, but you're waaaay off base on this one. I can give you a quote from a real person I knew at work back when I became unexpectedly pregnant as a special needs school worker: "I'm so glad I got my abortion. It was very easy, and it was a great decision. I mean, I was so young, and because I had it, I was able to go around the world, travel to Europe and backpack for a couple years...yeah, it was a really simple choice for me, and I'm glad I did it, and I really think you should look into it." You can't tell me that people don't think this is an easy choice for avoiding their responsibilities and obligations, because that is EXACTLY what it is. The only 2 people who ever even brought it up as a possibility to me were people who either did or wanted to do JUST THAT, and they both seem to have decided to do it as if there was traffic on the freeway so they'd have to take 4th street instead. Oh well!Posted by: xalisae at August 7, 2009 2:35 PM
"Why is everyone so hell-bent on perpetuating this inaccurate stereotype of pro-lifers as religious nuts pushing a biblical agenda?"
Because if the issue is framed as exclusively religious, then an honest debate never happens. No inconvenient scientific facts to consider, no pesky common sense arguments to get in the way. It's about denying the sincerity and legitimacy of the pro-life movement. If we're all just a bunch of grumpy nuns who want to impose our anti-sex views on society, then they can just attack that strawman they've created instead of responding to the heart of the issue: the humanity of the unborn.
Oh, and I also have a quote from a post-abortive someone I knew personally. I said something to the effect of "Although I don't agree with your decision, I wish you a speedy recovery." Her reponse was, "That's your personal opinion. It's my life and I'll have a baby later when I'm done with school." She literally shrugged after she said that. And it was in same tone as if she had chosen a green sweater instead of a red one.Posted by: Janette at August 7, 2009 3:24 PM
"You can't tell me that people don't think this is an easy choice for avoiding their responsibilities and obligations, because that is EXACTLY what it is."
Yep. Whenever the issue of government aid to poor women for the sake of curbing abortion, I point that out. Now I'm not opposed to aiding the poor (whether via government or private sector is a debate in itself), but as long as there is the option to become "unpregnant," no amount of assistance can compete with the temptation to just make it go away. And with all the misleading euphemisms making it seem like a non-issue, nothing more than a little surgery for personal reasons, there are not enough resources in the universe to compete with that quick fix sales pitch.Posted by: Janette at August 7, 2009 3:32 PM
I don't consider myself a religious person- a deeply spiritual one, but not religious, so you're not alone, Xalisae. :)
The president is one of the only pro-choice people who (or is it whom?) I've ever read who considers it a difficult decision. I read Feministe for about a year when I was doing an essay on feminism and wanted to get a good grip on different types of feminists, plus Feministing (Jessica Valenti put me off of women's rights for the longest time), interviews with Gloria Steinem, Eleanor Smeal, and others. I scanned two library books on abortion, read one collection of essays (well, not thoroughly, to your credit) written by those who oppose fetal rights, watched about six videos on YouTube, watched CNN for a couple of hours in an airport waiting for the (delayed) plane shortly after the Tiller shooting, have read countless blogs, newspaper articles, saw a few posters in my school, read Planned Parenthood press releases, MSN articles, and a few essays posted online.
I'm sorry that I don't have specific names. Now that my research into feminism is over (and, oddly enough, so many feminists have the notion that you have to rotate around abortion to support women), I deleted the Favorites Folder that held all of the articles.
I've found a whopping three pro-lifers (because I keep track of them; I find them to be hypocrites is why) who say the same.Posted by: Vannah at August 7, 2009 6:16 PM
I know that this is really random, and this probably won't get any attention (alas) because it's off of the subject, but my newsletter from Darfur came in today, and it said that the president has just received all of the signatures and letters from the activists (I wrote one!) and in order to help continue work that reaches the White House directly, de facto in order to help Darfur, they need donations. Please, please, please donate. Please.
I'm currently trying to save up money in my cow bank for them, and this is particularly important since Darfur gets reported with the same accuracy as abortion (meaning, yup, the media coverage of Darfur is crap, too). I mean, seriously, there were more articles devoted to Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie's excursion to McDonalds than Darfur's gotten in the past several months.
Please donate. I'll send you lots of smileys if you do. :)Posted by: Vannah at August 7, 2009 7:00 PM
"(meaning, yup, the media coverage of Darfur is crap, too). I mean, seriously, there were more articles devoted to Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie's excursion to McDonalds than Darfur's gotten in the past several months."
They why do love Brian Williams? King of state run media with painted face?Posted by: Jasper at August 7, 2009 7:42 PM
Awww, I like Brian Williams. I don't even have television anymore and I still like Brian Williams.
Who did you vote for on the news poll? :)
(the smiley face diffuses everything)Posted by: Vannah at August 7, 2009 7:51 PM
Brett Baier --Fox news.
B,Williams is a shill for ObamaPosted by: Jasper at August 7, 2009 8:06 PM
Can anyone spell, "C-A-N-C-E-L-L-E-D-"?Posted by: HisMan at August 7, 2009 10:03 PM
What?Posted by: Janet at August 8, 2009 3:01 PM
Thank you for the information! I will pass it along to my friend but I'm not sure if she will act on it. She has recovered to an extent, but she has now entered a phase where she prefers to pretend (at least outwardly) that it never happened. I don't think she has reached a point where she's willing to look into Rachel's Vineyard or similar programs.
I am so sorry, too, for everything you went through. I greatly admire you for using your suffering to reach out to other women who are going through the same.Posted by: Kayley at August 9, 2009 1:46 AM
I will be praying for you and your friend. There is hope and healing in abortion recovery.
I do understand the anguish of soul that prompts a woman to deny it really happened to her. That went on with me for years.
You are obviously a very loving, supportive friend to your friend. :)
I'm sorry to be non-pc, but there are quite a few women who are "glib, easy, and insensitive" about having abortions. I knew of one woman who was absolutely flabbergasted when she found I was pro-life and said "nobody intelligent is pro-life." Uh, okay. Then she went on to say that since she and her partner wanted to remain childfree, abortion was the only option. She then went on to say "all my friends have had them," as if she were talking about a new sort of facelift or something. I also heard another young woman talk about scheduling her abortion. She stated that she had had one at four months last summer, stated, "it was a boy," and then went on to complain that she hadn't had sex in two weeks.
Why shouldn't women feel this way when pro-choice activists have been telling them it's just a blob, collection of tissue, or that it's no more complicated than pulling a tooth? Why not indeed?
I never heard of "Defying Gravity" anyway.Posted by: Phillymiss at August 10, 2009 1:04 PM
Most of my comments have been made by others. Obviously, I know of very few PLers who make statements implying that the 'choice' is an easy one. Hell, Rachel's Vineyard does a lot more to dash those ideas than Planned Parenthood does!
But I kinda felt like they were saying that PLers pain PCers as being glib about the whole thing. Maybe I misread, but that's what it sounded like to me. And honestly, I think sometimes we do. Of course, it's frequently merited...
Also, it is immensely offensive that they would use Hindu theology as a defense for their statements. Especially considering that you so much as squish a fly during this lifetime and you pay for it later. Having a soul that transfers from body to body isn't justification for murder. DUH.Posted by: MaryRose at August 11, 2009 12:02 AM
PLers paint PCers (not pain) -my bad.Posted by: MaryRose at August 11, 2009 12:04 AM