People like Beth Patterson, who wrote “We Dissent” (Viewpoint, 7/7), or Jenny Gusset, author of the same issue’s vitriolic letter titled “It’s Not Men’s Place To Decide,” don’t appear to understand the fundamental issue with respect to the abortion debate. They have only succeeded in bemoaning the same old political platitudes which miss the issue altogether, about which I would now like to shed light.
Love it or hate it, the system we have inherited is one called liberalism. Liberalism is a sociopolitical and moral system with a compatible economic structure which has as its fundamental value individual liberty. It also values democracy, a free market, rule of law and pluralism.
Most political philosophers who favor liberalism, such as J.S. Mill, support the idea that your rights should only be limited when what you’re doing can harm others. Thus, when a woman asserts that the voice of no man should ever be considered in the abortion debate, she is misunderstanding what it means to be a liberal. No matter how one wishes to define what a fetus is, the fact is that some people feel compelled to take up for the rights of what will one day be a human being.
Some of those people happen to be men. Therefore, men should voice their opinions about this issue. Yes, it is also consistent with liberalism for a woman to decide whether or not to have an abortion, but one must engage in some spurious reasoning to assert that whatever is in the womb has no rights. Therein lies the debate, about which all people, whether man or woman, shouldn’t let platitudes or hot takes dissuade them from expressing their rightful opinion.