By Emmy Serviss / Boston
I don’t know what to say.
I have all these feelings swirling inside my mind and body, but I don’t have the words to articulate them. And since I consider myself (among other things) a writer, this is extremely frustrating. This frustration adds to the swirling inside my brain but since there are still no words there, it just makes me want to yell and hit things.
I want to scream at all the old men who decided that they get to dictate what happens to bodies that don’t belong to them.
I want to scream at all the people that voted to give these old men power over us.
I want to scream at all the people who agree with the old men. All the people that think it’s perfectly fine to tell a stranger what she can or can’t do with her body.
Or tell a stranger whom they can or can’t love.
Or who they can or can’t be.
I don’t know what to say because words don’t seem to work anymore. Logic and compassion don’t work. Humanity is a concept that has lost all meaning.
Let me be clear. I am not pro-abortion.
I don’t think there’s anyone who is pro-abortion. No one wants an abortion. No one is carrying a sign that says “YAY ABORTIONS!” No one skips down the road to Planned Parenthood because she’s excited about getting an abortion.
I don’t want an abortion.
No one wants an abortion.
But we want the option.
I want the goddamn option.
And I understand why it’s such a delicate topic. People have their own beliefs about life and their own conception of what is “right and wrong” and that’s all very nice. People are allowed to believe what they want to believe. People are allowed to believe whatever the hell they want. But it’s telling other people what they get to believe that I have a problem with.
When I was a kid, I believed that if I stepped on a crack I might break my mother’s back. So I didn’t step on cracks in the sidewalk, because I love my mother. Now, this belief may strike you as silly, and I agree that it’s silly. But there are hundreds or thousands of kids (and maybe adults) that believe this silly concept enough to avoid cracks in the sidewalk.
Which is fine, because having a belief is fine. Living your life according to your beliefs is fine.
But if I stood outside on the street and screamed that no one else was allowed to step on a crack, that would be absolutely absurd. And if I wanted to arrest anyone who stepped on a crack anyway, that would be insane.
Ordering complete strangers to live their lives according to my beliefs is insane.
I know it may seem like a ridiculous comparison. Abortions and stepping on cracks in the sidewalk. It is a ridiculous comparison. Because the whole thing is ridiculous.
I could throw around facts about how the world is overpopulated and there are already children who need to be adopted and the government doesn’t seem to care about any of those children.
I could research how many women die each year due to complications from illegal abortions, and how many lives would be saved if abortions were available as needed.
I could share statistics about the babies that are born with debilitating conditions because the mothers were forced to carry them to term.
But I don’t want to do that. I just want to scream and yell because I don’t understand how people can blindly fight for the rights of a clump of cells when the life of an actual living, breathing woman is at risk.
I don’t understand.
Someone explain it to me because I don’t understand.
Why are there women who aren’t outraged that they get to decide for us?
Why are there human beings who aren’t outraged that they get to decide for us?
I don’t understand.
Why is it a violation of other people’s rights to make them wear a mask, but we don’t get any rights when choosing whether or not to house a person in our uterus for nine months?
Why is it a violation of their rights to make them get a vaccine (even though vaccines helped eradicate smallpox and polio), but we don’t get any rights even if keeping the baby means losing our own life?
It would be great if there was any kind of consistency in this logic. Or at least the illusion of consistency. Because it can’t be a matter of personal freedom when your belief dictates the laws that will affect the lives of millions of other people. But MY decision whether or not to keep MY baby somehow has an effect on you.
There is no logic.
There is no consistency.
I have no words.
Because I don’t understand.
Emmy Serviss is a Boston-based writer, actor and video editor. Once it is safe to return to live theater, you can find her performing with ComedySportz Boston and the sketch group SUZZY. When not on the stage, Emmy enjoys indulging in her new pandemic hobbies, laughing way too loudly and counting the days until Halloween.