I Can't Believe We Are Arguing Over This

Submitted into Contest #153 in response to: Write a story that includes the line “I can’t believe we’re arguing over this.”... view prompt


Creative Nonfiction American Drama

I Can't Believe We Are Arguing Over This

On June 24th, 2022, the Supreme Court of the United States of America voted to overturn Roe v. Wade, the ruling that declared abortion a constitutional right almost half a century ago. It is hard for many Americans to accept and understand the reason behind this decision.

I am outraged by the reversal of Roe v. Wade. I believe that a woman's right to choose what to do with her body is her human birthright. I also feel that the court's recent decision pushed our country, which has served as a shining beacon for democracy and freedom for the rest of the world until now, into taking the dangerous step towards oppression. I believe that the woman's right to choose is her human birthright, and no government, or a court, regardless of its highest standing, should have a say in it. It is unacceptable.

     Having lived in a society where the totalitarian regime of the Communist Party of the USSR controlled everything, I cannot support this decision. For twenty-three years, I stood witness to what effect indoctrination does on people's minds. For twenty-three years, I lived a life filled with fear in a country of not enough, the place of my birth. 

Coming to the land of the free and the home of the brave, I discovered the freedoms America offers and learned that they are not free. Forty-five years later, once again, I stand witness to brainwashing. Only this time, the politicians of the United States of America are doing it.

Last week, I watched the mainstream media's reaction to the SCOTUS's ruling. It horrified me because of the misinformation it presented to its listeners. The lies spewed from the mouths of the television personalities spread like butter on a hot toast, saturating its surface completely.

The hosts and the reporters on various channels told the American people that the Highest Court of the USA just took away a woman's constitutional right to choose. I knew it was not valid. Nowhere in the Constitution of the United States of America do the Founding Fathers mention that a woman has a fundamental right to abort a child. Nowhere.

I can't believe we are still arguing over this today. Our society is much more educated and advanced than when the Founding Fathers wrote the Constitution of the United States of America. It is not the 18th century but the 21st century we live in now.

    Then a woman had very few individual rights. Over two hundred years later, women have worked and fought hard for their freedoms. We have a right to live free from violence and discrimination. We have a right to enjoy the highest attainable physical and mental health standards. Women have the freedom to become educated, own land, vote, and earn equal wages. But most of all, women have a right to have their voices heard.

    It is that right that gives them the power to control their bodies. This freedom should have nothing to do with whether the Constitution says it is a woman's right to choose. It has everything to do with human rights. Under God, women, like men, are entitled to liberty and the pursuit of happiness. In the eye of the Creator, we are equal.

The latest Supreme Court decision, which reversed Roe v. Wade, should not take away a woman's right to choose when she wants to have a child. The judges passed Roe v. Wade in 1973 via 14th Amendment, under an Equal Protection Act. It guaranteed the same rights to individuals, regardless of the color of their skin or place of origin.

 Almost fifty years later, in 2022, I understood why the Supreme Court reversed its decision. It corrected the technicality on which the judges preciously passed Roe v. Wade. Still, I could not sit quietly. In front of the TV set, eyes glued to the screen in fascination, I observed and relived the painful moments of my former life, watching the mainstream media ignoring this historical fact and deceiving the public by broadcasting the news that suited their political propaganda.

I am a supporter of a woman's right to choose abortion, but I draw a line when termination of pregnancy happens in the second or third trimester of gestation. When I see images of women with visibly far-gone pregnancies, exposing their bare bellies with the words "Not a human yet" written in protest to the SCOTUS' decision, I shudder from the barbarity that this message carries. It is deplorable. How could anyone use these words knowing there is a life inside this belly? It is alive. The baby is kicking and moving. It is letting the mother know that soon enough, she will hold a child in her arms.

The protests I watched on the TV screen horrified me. I could not understand how anyone could think reversing Roe v. Wade would cancel a woman's right to abortion? The SCOTUS's decision was to re-delegate this responsibility to the individual state. I believe this is the correct choice. In the USSR, I had lived a life where the Federal government told me what to say and do, what to wear and when to starve, and which doctrines to or not follow. Living in an environment like that was suffocating, but people had no choice behind the Iron Curtain.

In America, we do. We have a right to speak and have our voices heard. But lately, I have noticed a problem with freedom of expression. Our civilized society lost its ability to agree to disagree. People are no longer open to debate. They refuse to hear what the other side says and cannot even consider processing the opposition's argument to defend its point. It happens because, going into the discussion, one of the two sides comes with a preconceived idea that their opinion is the only one that matters and that their opponent's view of the subject is not essential.

My heart breaks watching the demise of my beloved country because I know the root of this destruction. It lies in the propaganda, brainwashing, and subjugation of human minds. The progressives learned from the best and are excelling at achieving that, and the longer I live in America, the more I witness what I lived through in the USSR. The political rhetoric has brainwashed half of the Americans. It kills me to see the impressionable young minds fall into the same trap I did when I was their age.

Like them, I believed everything my teachers taught me about the country of my birth and the government in the classroom. On my graduation day, I walked away from the podium after giving an encouraging speech to everyone in the audience, thinking that I lived in the best country in the world, despite being prosecuted as a Jew and experiencing anti-Semitism daily.

Shortly after graduation, I left my parent's nest and discovered for myself that life was not anything they taught me in school. It took me some time to sort it out. Living on my own was hard and opened my eyes to how misinformed I was. I had to adapt to survive in a country of not enough that put obstacles in my way whenever I wanted to become more.

Where I grew up, the government allowed abortion, and most women used it as birth control. There were no other sources obtainable to prevent them from getting pregnant. No contraceptives were available to them, and men did not like to use condoms. These were poorly designed and uncomfortable to wear. 

However, even in the USSR, some women experienced judgment regarding abortions. Most doctors were sympathetic to married women but scrutinized the unwed young girls who got pregnant. They shamed and belittled them to make it harder to get an abortion. Not wanting to hear the doctor's lecture and to avoid the embarrassment, some families took their pregnant daughters to seek help outside the clinic. They used underground services performed by unqualified quacks for money. Many of these girls died, and some could never get pregnant again after those surgeries. 

The Supreme Court's overturning of Roe v. Wade made me upset. When I think of those states that do not believe in abortion, I see how problematic it could be for women who live there to find a decent doctor willing to perform an abortion illegally. Any self-respecting practitioner who abides by law would not take this risk. I envision many women's death while undergoing an abortion in a decrepit neighborhood, somewhere in the back alley, performed by an unqualified person. It is morally wrong, and I believe that in those states that will not allow termination of pregnancy, the bureaucrats in charge should instill some sensible guidelines allowing those procedures to proceed under certain circumstances. 

I strongly support an interruption in pregnancy when a man rapes a woman, when she becomes pregnant through incest, carries a defective fetus, or when her life is at stake. Nowadays, technology is so advanced that it can detect abnormalities in the early stages of pregnancy.

I have reasons for that. If someone raped me and I became pregnant, as a mother of two who wanted her children to be born, I wouldn't be able to love a child who, to no fault of their own, became a product of rape. The government should not force a mother to love a child who is a daily reminder of the petrifying assault on her body. It is unfair to a child who deserves to be loved and unacceptable to a mother who never planned to have this baby. 

In the case of incest, I cannot even imagine the many things going wrong from the start of conception to the birth of a baby. Mental retardation and physical disfigurement, to name a few. The outcome of such a relationship is grim. Such a child, most likely, would be a burden on the mother and society overall. If my child were the product of an incestuous relationship, I would insist on abortion.

The night I heard about the SCOTUS's decision on Roe v. Wade, I put my head on my pillow, trying to fall asleep, but my mind would not let me do it. I heard the chatter similar to the pebbles falling on the hardwood floor inside my head. Its resonance kept me awake in the middle of the night, making me hard to imagine that the brainwashing of the mainstream media would go away soon.

The realization that I was witnessing America's demise hit me hard in my latent years. It seemed like history repeated itself. Every civilized society had destroyed itself from within. The extermination of my beloved country happens because of the propaganda and brainwashing of the minds of citizens.

Deep in my soul, I knew that the moral dilemma in front of my eyes happened because our freedom of thought became limited. The politicians work hard to achieve their goals of disempowering America and extinguishing its freedoms.

The politicians do not care about the damages their propaganda inflicts on the psyche of the citizens of our great country because they want people to stay divided. Ultimately, it benefits them because the longer the two sides hate one another, the more votes the politicians can count. Those in power do not care if America is no longer a country the rest of the world admires. All they want is the power to control. 

Today, I cannot believe we are still arguing over a woman's right to choose. It should not even be an issue. Still, it is because talking about it on mainstream media fuels the fire of discontent, filling politicians' evil hearts with gladness and delight as it continues to deepen the division between those who do not agree with each other. 

July 05, 2022 20:47

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Mahogany Ree
20:42 Jul 21, 2022

Etya, this is outstanding! No, its not a story in the traditional sense but in your heart it is indeed a story. You write with so much passion on this issue while also making it informative for those readers who are not familiar with this recent turn of events. Thank you for writing this. It's definitely noteworthy and indeed something that needed to be said!


Etya Krichmar
16:50 Jul 22, 2022

Thank you so much, Mahogany Ree. I appreciate your kind words.


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Rabab Zaidi
04:22 Jul 11, 2022

Very well written. But this is not a story.


Etya Krichmar
16:13 Jul 11, 2022

Thank you for reading.


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