I have a story to tell. It’s the story of a 16-year-old girl in 1990. Imagine a 16- year-old girl in a small, mostly redneck community with a crazy, jealous mother, a younger sister and an indifferent stepdad. Her stepfather is home every day when she gets home from school but she is not allowed to enter the house until hours later, when her mother gets home from work, because of the mother’s jealousy toward her daughter.
This household also has a curfew that is strictly enforced in the form of a locked door at the curfew time that prohibits entrance into the house. Sleeping in the streets and finding other places to sleep become a commonality for this girl. Soon, this bed- and love-deprived girl finds an older guy willing to take her into his bed, in more than one way.
Unprotected sex ultimately leads to another teen pregnancy in this rural, Georgia county. The girl finds nothing but an urging to get an abortion from her family, and no support whatsoever from her lover. As an unsupported, unemployed young girl riddled with lice and venereal warts, no option except the proposed abortion makes any logical sense… and yet she chooses adoption.
This story may mean nothing to you, but to me it means everything because I was that baby who got to live. The pain and inconvenience of nine months of pregnancy on top of an STD that had to be endured until the birth could take place, as well as a C-Section in order for the baby to actually be born, were the awful consequences to be suffered by this young woman in order to bring her child into the world, and yet she chose to honor life.
Recently our campus has been in an uproar over the chalking of the sidewalks by the pro-life group. The so-called “mixing of church and state” done by the pro-life group in their chalking upset many, including most of my friends. While I do believe that my religion enhances my choice to be abstinent and pro-life, I do not believe that these decisions have to depend on religion whatsoever.
I also recognize that others do not share my religious beliefs, and thus telling people the decisions they should make based on religious beliefs that they do not hold is pointless and spurs anger. As a person who logically should have been aborted, I recognize the importance of human life. I do not want to praise myself whatsoever because I know that I, like anyone else, have more than my share of faults, but for those of you who know me very well, think how different your life would be were I not in it. Who would have comforted you and let you cry on their shoulder?
Who would have taken care of you as you vomited/passed out drunk? Who would have driven you to Checkers at 1 a.m. when you could not? Who would have done simple things such as offered hugs at any given moment to let you know you are loved or simply proofread your papers?
Think not only of me, but also for any person you have ever known that ever had any impact on your life whatsoever. They too could have been inches away from not existing because of abortion. In New York City alone there were 87,273 abortions reported in 2009.
That’s 87,273 people who didn’t get to offer shoulders to cry on. Haven’t you ever felt like you had no one to turn to? There’s a possibility that that’s because the person you could have turned to never got the right to be there for you. We all know what safe sex is and we all know how to practice it. If you are that broke, Student Health offers condoms for free.
But keep in mind that no form of sex is completely safe and that no form of birth control is 100 percent effective. So while I don’t think the elementary chalking of the campus was influential in any way except to infuriate many, I would like to ask you to pause and consider those you love and how close they could have come to not ever existing. I do believe in freedom of choice, the choice to have sex. And I believe in equal human rights for ALL humans.
– Kathryne Scott, Sophomore