Are the advocates of abortion going mad? Look at Emily Letts, a 25-year-old abortion counsellor, who decided to film her own ‘procedure’ to show what a wonderful life-affirming experience getting rid of your unwanted pregnancy can be. Cosmopolitan magazine has published the film online along with an article by Letts, who says ‘every time I watch the video, I love it. I love how positive it is. I think that there are just no positive abortion stories on video for everyone to see. But mine is.”
Another woman, calling herself Angie AntiTheist, had produced a much-watched video of herself having a chemical abortion; Letts decided to go for the more visceral surgical option. “I could have taken the pill,” she says, “but I wanted to do the one that women were most afraid of. I wanted to show it wasn’t scary — and that there is such a thing as a positive abortion story.”
Emily is positive, no doubt about that. “I remember breathing and humming through it like I was giving birth,’ she says, recalling the op. ‘I know that sounds weird, but to me, this was as birth-like as it could be. It will always be a special memory for me. I still have my sonogram, and if my apartment were to catch fire, it would be the first thing I’d grab.”
She’s right: it does sound weird. And creepy. An abortion is in most respects the opposite of a birth. Yes, they both involve pain and a physical separation of woman from child. But one is about ‘termination’. The other is about a new life coming into the world. No amount of spin can change that. You might cheer the idea that women are no longer slaves to their sexual organs, that their lives do not have to change course because of one sexual encounter, but you cannot reasonably pretend that the act of abortion is anything other than grim.