Some of you might have noticed that in all my writing here I have scrupulously avoided discussing abortion. That is, until today. It will come as no surprise to learn that this evasion was not accidental. Yet it was not the result of any personal discomfort. Instead, it was due to my following of strict Church strictures.
Everyone who works at the Church of Infinitiaty—whether in an ecclesiastic, marketing, lobbying, financial, executive, administrative, janitorial, or any other capacity—operates under stringent policies. One of the most revered policies forbids the issuing of any public or private statement that has even the slightest potential to result in any negative impact on Church revenues.
Needless to say, abortion is such an emotionally charged issue that any statement I make about it will royally piss off one segment of the population or another. And royally pissed off people tend to be reluctant to pay dues and donations to the people and institutions that royally pissed them off.
Thus, while the Church of Infinitiaty does have a stand on abortion, I’m not supposed to tell you what it is. Nevertheless, I’m going to break that rule today.
As soon as this is published I will no doubt be called on the carpet by the Chief Revenue Officer of the Church of Infinitiaty. The Chief Executive Officer might want to chastise me severely as well. My punishment will likely be a crippling fine paid to the Church’s treasury. I was nonetheless moved to discuss abortion in today’s post when I received an email from a horribly misguided Infinitian woman named Jayne Strompette. Her message was poignant without in anyway diminishing its lunacy.
The following is an uncut, unadulterated cut-and-paste of Jayne’s email:
Dear Sage Mike,
I was about to say that words fail me, but my ability to write these humble, distressed words prove that to be false. What I meant to say is that I am distraught to distraction and beyond.
I am now two months pregnant. I could beat around the bush, but the truth is I don’t want this baby. Not now. Not ever. Not at all. Given the choice, I’d much rather have excruciating genital herpes than go through with this pregnancy. And, seeing as though I already have genital herpes, I don’t see why I should have to have this baby too.
What’s more, I find the mere thought of carrying this unwanted, growing bastard or bastardess (or whatever the female equivalent of bastard is) around inside of me for the next seven months to be abhorrent. And if just thinking about it disgusts me, going through with it would kill me.
I realize I’m not in this alone. I don’t know who the father is, but I’ve talked to all of the dozen or so men whose sperm might have impregnated me in the usual way. And sometimes it was done in unusual ways. I talked to those men too.
To a man, all of them are appalled at the possibility of being a father. Yet, they all said that even if they wanted the child the choice would still be mine. But they thought I’d be an idiot to go through with it. So, to say that this fetus is utterly unwanted all round would be a monstrous understatement.
At first blush, the answer to my problem seems obvious: abortion. Yet, I’m aware that abortion is the gravest of sins in our religion. My fear that I will be condemned by the Gods for aborting this fetus is almost as great as my fear and loathing of the consequences of not aborting it.
To abort or not to abort, that is the question. What should I do, Sage Mike?
Yours in pregnancy,
Jayne, you ignorant slut. Where did you get the ridiculous notion that Infinitiaty considered abortion to be a grave sin, or even a minor sin for that matter? Nothing could be further from the truth. It’s clear that you don’t have a freaking clue about our religion and you are just faking your faith.
Abortion: It’s Your Choice, Not the Church of Infinitiaty’s Choice
The view of the Church of Infinitiaty is that in the early stages of a pregnancy a fetus is just a really cool arrangement of cells that has the potential to develop into a human. But at that point, it is not a yet a human in any meaningful sense of the word. Thus, at least in the first few months of a pregnancy, having an abortion is no more sinful than having a wart removed.
True, the fetus can develop into a human if allowed to do so. But, so what? It seems highly likely that at some, possibly distant, point in the future scientists will be able technically, if not morally or legally, to reliably clone a human from any cell that contains a complete strand of an individual’s DNA. Are you suggesting that you should then no longer be allowed to cut your hair or nails or have a cancer excised because, in the process, you might destroy cells that have the potential to be formed into a human? Of course not. Well, that’s also the Church’s philosophy on early-stage abortions.
Late-stage abortions are another matter. There are some moral qualms and considerable debate about their morality. There is, after all, almost no difference between a fetus shortly before birth and a baby shortly after birth. However, even here, as long as the moral questions regarding late-term abortions have not yet been decided conclusively, the Church’s position is that the person who will bear the greatest burden and responsibility, and in whose body the fetus is growing—the mother—should have the final word.
Preferably, she will make that choice in consultation with a rational medical doctor who is willing to give her an unbiased, facts-based opinion of the safety of an abortion and the humanness of the fetus at that stage. Talking with people who have a level of emotional detachment might also help her to reach the best decision for her own emotional well-being. But the choice of whether to seek out these consultations should be hers.
So, Jayne, contrary to your ridiculous beliefs, neither the Gods nor the Church of Infinitiaty will condemn you for having an abortion. In fact, in your case, the Church not only allows you to have an abortion, we strongly encourage it. You are obviously ignorant of even the most basic tenets of Infinitiaty. We would prefer that you not have a baby until you’ve learned enough about our religion to be able to rigorously indoctrinate your Infinitian child into our faith. What’s more, considering how stupid you obviously are, we’re also unhappy about the thought of your genes being propagated.
And, Jayne, one more thing. I strongly recommend that you Google “contraceptives.” Your knowledge in that area seems to be exceptionally weak. The Gods and the Church would look very favorably on your use of contraception. It goes without saying that the most effective form of contraception, total abstinence, is out of the question for most normal people. From the sounds of it, that’s even more true for you. Recognizing that truth, the Church believes that contraception, whenever possible, is far preferable to abortion.