In his state-of-the-state address yesterday, New York’s Governor Andrew Cuomo called for a women’s equality act that would codify abortion rights in state law. To emphasize his point, he twice yelled out: “Her Body, Her Choice!”
In New York, female minors can get an abortion without parental permission. And yet less than a year ago Governor Cuomo, citing health risks, signed a bill into law requiring that minors get parental permission — in writing, before getting body piercing or access to a tanning booth. Most honest medical professionals would agree that abortion poses a far greater health risk, physical and psychological, than a tanning booth.
Often times political leaders and activists see a woman as just a body, and a fetus as just a clump of flesh. As a result, their advocacy is based on a flawed understanding of (or rebellion against) the bigger picture of the human person and truth. LE once asked Gloria Steinem — “Where do women get their power?” She replied: “Their body.”
Photograph: Stephen Wise