Friday, January 19, 2007

Arguing sucks.

The year before my sister was born, the US supreme court ruled that a Connecticut law prohibiting contraception was unconstitutional, because it violated the "right to marital privacy". A few years later, shortly after I was born, the court then struck down a Massachusetts law that made it illegal for unmarried couples to possess contraception. That's right. Contraception was illegal in parts of the United States within my lifetime. That's hard for me to fathom.

I think it's at least in part because I grew up in a pro-choice household with a gynecologist parent, but I've always been very interested in reproductive rights. When I became sexually active, I knew that if I got pregnant unintentionally, I would have to find some way to talk to my mom about it and get an abortion. There's no way I could have been ready for a child. Geeze, I don't think I'm ready for a child even now!

I was almost two years old when the supreme court decided Roe v. Wade, on January 22, 1973. My mom's contemporaries didn't have the rights I have. When they faced an unplanned pregnancy, they had only a few possibilities. If they were well-to-do and plugged in to the underground feminist movement (yeah, right!), they could see if Jane could help. Or they could try to get married, not that that actually solves the problem of not wanting to procreate. They could choose to risk certain death by unsafe abortion. Or they could try to avoid the whole unintended pregnancy issue in the first place by practicing sexual abstinence. Awesome. No Sex. EVER.

Tomorrow night there is a concert in the college town where I used to live, timed to coincide with the 34th anniversary of Roe. All proceeds will go to the advocacy arm of the reproductive rights organization I used to work for.

I'm planning on stopping by after hanging out at Crazy John's end-of-blog party. Anyone want to come with?