This I Believe

Payton - Shreveport, Louisiana
Entered on April 26, 2007
Age Group: Under 18

A major controversy and debate has broken out among the nation due to the various answers to the question pro-choice or pro-life; I stand with the minority, who believe in pro-choice. When the presidential election of 2004 came under way, a major, controversial choice of opinion came between the same question; furthermore, causing many differences of opinions and the challenging of people’s moral beliefs. At first, I did not fully understand the debate or why choosing one over the other was such a big deal, but after voicing my opinion, I learned very fast. Saying I was pro-choice instead of pro-life caused fiery arguments between my peers and me; moreover, it didn’t hit me how big my choice was, or how passionate I was about my choice, until later. I remember going to school and my peers would be talking about the “hot” debate with enthusiasm over what they believed in. When I told them my belief, I found that I was not in agreement with them, and therefore, because of that, I was labeled as a hateful person for choosing and believing in such an idea. Sensing the feelings of disgust and outrageousness, I dodged the topic in conversations for fear of starting unwanted arguments; I felt like I was the only person who had a different opinion, and everyone else was standing there with their pitchforks ready to attack if I mentioned it ever again.

As time passed I began to become more comfortable, confident and I built a stronger opinion to counteract somebody when I got into a disagreement with he or she on the issue. One evening at lunch the topic came up and I was asked the question, “ How on earth can you believe in something that kills a child in the womb?” I thought hard about what I was going to say, and replied by explaining that I was not for killing babies and having abortions every time somebody has unprotected sex, because it is not the answer, but merely having the choice rather to choose between abortion or not. I explained that having the abortion or not having abortion is not the dilemma, but having the right to choose being taken away based on different moral opinions is. They slowly took in the information, but still held strongly to their opinions that anybody who believed in pro-choice believed in using abortion as a “get out of jail free card” at a horrible cost. I once again explained that it is every woman’s own right in whether or not she chooses to have an abortion at any cost; Actually, the question is not how can she want an abortion but why or does she even care. Simply stating, many people judge others on their own moral beliefs, not taking into consideration that the person standing next to them most likely does not believe in the same morals as them; therefore, it is nonsense to try and take somebody’s right away to choose to do something simply because you are ignorant to their feelings, do not agree with them, or their choices do not come under your same moral code. Pro-life versus pro-choice is similar to a battle between do I want sprinkles on my ice cream or not; It is not fighting for everyone to have sprinkles, but merely to have the choice to have sprinkles or not.

Slowly building up my opinions and confidence about my belief in pro-choice, I am now more comfortable and confident than ever in voicing my opinion and belief without fear or doubt. Today, when the topic comes up in a conversation, I openly express my view on the situation in order to help people see things from a different angle. Although many people are stubborn and stuck in their beliefs, I have found that more and more people are open to the idea of thinking that pro-choice actually means pro-choice instead of pro-abortion. Not only is believing in pro-choice a passionate thing for every one person, it also supports the idea in being able to choose between anything in life; Freedom to choose, which is the idea that our country was founded by. I often find people asking me if people stereotype me as the person who is fighting for abortions, because I believe in pro-choice. Only ignorant and uneducated people see me as a pro-abortion person, because they, like many other people, believe that their moral beliefs are superior to others. Judging a person by their beliefs in pro-choice or pro-life comes down to the simple question, do they uphold the same moral beliefs that I do or not; It is not a question that he or she is for all abortions, but merely that they are for the idea to be able to choose whichever path suits them the best. Pro-choice is my motto in any situation whether it be in choosing to have an abortion or not, or if I want sprinkles on my ice cream or not.