KHAN: Pro-Life, Male and Proud
Mr. Right

An all-male Supreme Court legalized abortion nationwide in the landmark decision Roe v. Wade. But when male legislators vote to restrict abortion and protect the unborn child, they are labeled misogynistic and cruel. According to the polls, nearly half of American women are pro-life, yet apparently these women are the marching soldiers in the “war on women.” This logic makes complete sense to the pro-choice lobby.

Identity politics may be fulfilling for some, but in the words of Geoffrey Chaucer, “all good things must come to an end.” As the president of Vita Saxa, Georgetown’s pro-life club, I know that the majority of our club is female. I know that every year we host Feminists for Life on campus. I know that the majority of pro-life organizations in America are run by women, and even our nation’s earliest feminists, like Susan B. Anthony and Elizabeth Cady Stanton, were devoutly pro-life. I also know, however, that men are as much involved in sex and a child’s life as women. The vast majority of abortion doctors are male, like half of the babies aborted by those doctors every year in the United States.

The line popularized by Gloria Steinem —“if men could get pregnant, abortion would be a sacrament”— reaches down to the lowest rung of our public discourse and offers no meaningful addition to the abortion debate other than wild assumptions and baseless accusations. To me, in fact, being pro-life is even more important as a male student. All my life, I was told to side with the vulnerable, fight for the abused and raise a family built on conviction and values. My Christian faith implores me to reflect, and the chivalrous values on which I was raised compel me to speak out on behalf of those with no voice in the debate.

When I see so many pro-choice students disregard those with opposing viewpoints and harass fellow students who are pro-life at conferences and around campus, I cannot help but wonder what drives them to hate more than to love. My father, a Muslim immigrant from Pakistan, has a large, loving and deeply religious family. His brother Jawad and his wife Aneela unexpectedly birthed their fourth child, Ali Khan, late in life, more than a decade after their last.

Sometimes, the surprises in life are all the more fulfilling of our human purpose. What life would be like without Ali is unimaginable. The idea that every baby deserves to live, grow and earn a chance at life is not a punishment for women, but is rather a liberating course of action for both a new family and a new human life. Even if women choose adoption, they will find comfort in the fact that, according to studies by the Department of Health and Human Services, adopted children fare the same and often even better than other children. I should mention that Ali just turned seven, and I am happy to report, amidst the hustle and bustle of New York City life, second grade is going swell.

Yes, I am male, but I also believe in the value of every human life. If, based on science, life begins at the moment of conception, should it be the case that we make our judgments based on our gender rather than on the facts before us? What is morality if not the guiding principles regulating good and bad behavior?

The Blessed Mother Teresa famously said, “Abortion kills twice. It kills the body of the baby and it kills the conscience of the mother. Abortion is profoundly anti-women. Three quarters of its victims are women: half the babies and all the mothers.” Recently at the Council of Advisory Boards Fair, a pro-choice female student told us that abortion is a “women’s issue” and that we should not have men tabling. Truthfully, she may be half right. Those most affected by the issue should be at the table — so, logically, I asked her about the unborn child. Funny enough, she kept on walking.

Witnessing all the rhetoric and hearing all the hate displays the cruelty of so much of the pro-choice movement in the United States. Viewing the recently leaked Planned Parenthood tapes proves further that this issue is more than just about abortion; it is about how we, as a society, treat fellow human lives — and even how we talk about them. Our callous disregard should make future generations look back at us with disgust — at the men and the women the same.

Michael Khan is a sophomore in the College. Mr. Right appears every other Tuesday.

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  1. Pro-Choice Student says:

    You strike me as someone who hasn’t really read any convincing arguments from the pro-choice perspective. First of all, the pro-choice movement is not pro-abortion; it simply supports the legal right to abortions. Second, life begins at conception – well, yes, one cell forms. Are you suggesting that killing mere bundles of cells is immoral? Should cancer research that targets and kills malfunctioning cell tissues be ceased in order to avoid immoral conduct?

    Yes, obviously men are involved in sex, but they don’t have to undergo 9 months of pregnancy and then give birth to a child. And what does the statistic that most abortion doctors are male have to do with anything at all?

    I don’t think Mother Teresa was a great reference for a quote, either. If you ever get the chance, try reading Christopher Hitchens’ The Missionary Position. It discusses at length how her programs failed the suffering poor who inhabited them, including horrific living conditions, denying them medication, performing forced baptisms on the dying, and generally serving the purpose of publicly increasing Mother Teresa’s fame. She also accepted donations from corrupt financier Charles Keating, who had stolen the money from thousands of people and gave it to her only to ease his conscience – but she never returned it to his victims. Some saint, huh?

    I agree that it’s deplorable that some pro-choice individuals dismiss the pro-life movement without considerate conversation, but you’re guilty of some of the same rhetorical devices. You paint all of the pro-choice movement with one brush throughout this article, claiming that we have “callous disregard” for human lives” or that many of us “disregard those with opposing viewpoints and harass fellow students who are pro-life at conferences and around campus”. Pro-choice students have freedom of speech to protest pro-life events, although it sometimes doesn’t feel that way at Georgetown.

    Ultimately, this is a conversation that requires mutual respect, and it’s hard to do that when both sides make assumptions and just yell back and forth at each other.

    • Georgetown female says:

      Abortion is a gendered issue.

      I’m often surprised at how few men seem to understand the basic biology behind how oral contraception prevents pregnancy. In high school, I was taught about the menstrual cycle as well as male and female reproductive anatomy. Women I know have not necessarily had the same experience, but have sought out information on their own for practical purposes. On the other hand, men have no dire need to actually understand what is going on inside a woman’s body. This is why I feel perplexed when men take a strong stance on reproductive issues, and engage in activism against a woman’s right to abortion, or even contraception.

      Men, while certainly entitled to their free speech, will never know the gripping fear of accidental pregnancy, the experience of carrying a fetus within his body for nine months, or the painful and dangerous aspects of childbirth, which has a rare but very real chance of ending in death. Not to mention the life-altering responsibility of raising a child, which society demands disproportionally from women.

      Many don’t see these as valid fears because they assume that women are more amenable to accepting child-rearing roles, ignoring the many women who feel no desire to have or raise children, and the many more who plan their families to accommodate gratifying careers or defray economic hardship. Alternatively, they see motherhood as the unavoidable consequence of a woman’s consent to participate in sex for the purpose of pure pleasure—a punishment from which men are permanently and irrevocably exempt.

      The idea that gender is immaterial in the discourse over abortion is at odds with reality. It’s time we acknowledge the gendered nature of this age-old argument. While men are afforded at least half of the political voice on the subject, women experience almost all of the consequences.

  2. Congratulations... says:

    You are a male writing a column about an issue that overwhelmingly affects females. I’m glad your anecdote has a happy ending, but that does not mean every child placed for adoption fares as well. Let’s make sure that the right voices are the ones being heard.

    • “You are a male writing a column about an issue that overwhelmingly affects females.”

      “Let’s make sure that the right voices are the ones being heard.”

      Are you seriously saying that only women have the right to speak out and be heard about abortion?! Should men who strongly believe in the value of unborn life stay silent because ‘it doesn’t affect them’?!

      Shame on you and shame on anyone who can’t consider ideas objectively on their own merits and has to resort to identity politics in an effort to exclude dissenting voices from the debate.

  3. I see the crazed feminists are out in force

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