For an alternate viewpoint, see “Point: Abortion Is About All of Us.”
As we go into the 2022 general elections, we are being bombarded with messaging in both traditional media as well as social media proclaiming that abortion is among our most pressing issues. We are being told that if you believe in a woman’s right to choose and you believe in women’s health, then you must vote a certain way. Abortion has been a hot social and political topic for the last 20-plus years.
However, the Supreme Court in June struck down the 49-year-old ruling on Roe v. Wade that allowed equal access to abortion throughout the United States. This ruling did not eliminate abortion in the United States, but it reassigned the legality of abortion back to the individual states by deciding that “the authority to regulate abortion must be returned to the people and their elected representatives.”
But if you listened to the knee-jerk reactions of the media and federal officials, you would think that if you are not voting based on the abortion issue, then you are part of the War on Women, and you want women to be subservient to men.
In reality, only five states have some type of abortion laws on their November ballots. California, Michigan and Vermont want to amend their state constitutions to include abortion. Kentucky wants to reverse its stance to not protect abortion, while Montana is voting to provide care to babies that survive abortions, thus fulfilling the wish of the Supreme Court to return the right to decide abortion law to the states and their citizens. Despite the few states voting on abortion, we have many candidates running for election or re-election with the promise of making abortion issue No. 1 and promising to create laws that will restrict or solidify abortion in America.
Abortion should be a minor issue in this country at this time. This country is facing more pressing issues now than it has since before Roe v. Wade. Although the statistics on women who voluntarily obtain abortions (versus the number of those that are medically necessary) are not easy to come by, I will not insult readers with biased stats, we do have solid stats on various other issues that voters should concentrate on this election.
We are coming out of the worst of the COVID-19 pandemic that shut down businesses, closed schools and killed more than a million Americans. We are currently dealing with the aftermath of the loss of thousands of small businesses and the jobs they provided; major disruptions to the supply chain; families left in disarray due to the death of parents and/or children; and a vast number of mental health issues from which we may never recover.
Adding to those issues, we have the highest violent crime rates since the mid-1990s; energy costs are being driven upward with purposeful policy decisions; inflation is at its highest in 40 years and climbing; and our economy (as well as the rest of the world’s) is heading toward a major recession.
We have a porous border in which fentanyl and human trafficking flow through like a sieve; a resurgence of terrorism throughout the world; billions of dollars of U.S. military equipment and technology in the hands of the Taliban (and whomever they may have sold it to); China and North Korea are saber-rattling in the Pacific threatening Taiwan and South Korea respectively; and the United States is sending billions to Ukraine in its defense against the Russian invasion, which is pushing us as close to a nuclear confrontation as we have ever been.
With all the issues directly facing the country and affecting the voters, abortion should not be the pressing issue the president wants it to be. We, as Americans, need to examine ourselves, our lives, our morals and our values, and decide what issues are important to us and let the media and elected officials know by casting our votes this November.