Women's rights do not equal abortion rights: #ImNOTWithHer
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Pro-Life. A hot topic from the final presidential debate and one that is filling social media with comments and articles bashing Donald TrumpDonald John TrumpIvanka Trump pens op-ed on kindergartners learning tech Bharara, Yates tamp down expectations Mueller will bring criminal charges Overnight Cybersecurity: Equifax security employee left after breach | Lawmakers float bill to reform warrantless surveillance | Intel leaders keeping collusion probe open MORE and criticizing him for taking away a woman’s right to choose..

I generally don’t let the political banter get to me and the stories of parents having to deliver a child with conditions like Trisomy are tragic. This is one topic, however, where I feel I must provide a voice to defend the conservative position.

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I am not sure if I was always pro-life. Today I am because I have seen and lived another side, and I don’t believe this is a right or choice to make, whether man or woman.

My daughter was born at 24 weeks gestation. We were told she may not live and the statistics were not in her favor. We were told she may never walk. We were told she may never talk. We were told it was very likely she would have severe cognitive and motor disabilities.

I think about those days and the devastating diagnosis given by her doctors and I can still feel the lump in my throat and the hole in my heart forming. To receive this type of news about your child (or unborn child) is absolutely heart wrenching and something I would never wish upon anyone.

But I got to look at her, I got to see her body language, senses and emotion at just 24 weeks and I got to feel her heartbeat and her tiny hand squeeze my finger. There was no choice but to fight for the life of our tiny, bruised, and fragile daughter.

I often think, what if I had received that same news while my daughter was still in the womb at 24 weeks gestation. What if the doctor told me at my ultrasound that my unborn child was not likely to survive, and if she did, she would probably never walk or talk and she will have severe cognitive and motor delays. Would I have chosen differently?  

I thank God every day I wasn’t given that choice because today I have a beautiful four year old daughter who is smart, talking in two languages, walking (albeit delayed) and healthy. My daughter has mild cerebral palsy and Hydrocephalus.

As a mother of a child with special needs and a complex medical condition I think I can safely say that nobody expects or anticipates this for their child but you start to view the situation in a whole new light.

I used to see a child in a wheelchair, with Down Syndrome or other special needs and feel sorry for the child and parent. I now look at them and smile at how fortunate they are and how they were almost certainly told at some point they wouldn’t be doing what they are today. I can’t image any parent with a special needs child or child who lives with or died from Trisomy ever regretting they didn’t abort their pregnancy.

Donald Trump’s wording at the debate was maybe not the most eloquent way to defend the pro-life position but I admire his adamant stance on the issue. I wished he had stated that abortion is murder. Abortion is allowing a mother, father or doctor to make a decision of life or death when that decision is not ours to make. Thou shalt not kill.

If the government accepts the pro-choice stance to allow abortion then where does it draw the line. Do we legalize euthanasia? Do we say it is acceptable for a mother to take her terminally ill child’s life? These are all forms of murder, regardless of the painful circumstance surrounding it. To believe in Christianity is to believe that murder is a sin, no matter what form it comes in. We as humans to do not get to decide who gets the miracle of life.

Thank you Donald Trump, for defending this position.

Jessica Mason is a working professional woman and the mother of a special needs “preemie.” She can be contacted at Jessica.a.johnston@gmail.com


 

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