A clever turn of phrase can make wrong seem right and clear seem complicated. As a general rule, whoever is able to get their verbiage accepted as the correct words to use, they gain a lot of ground in public debates.
    One example is talking about babies. Choosing that word in and of itself points in a specific direction.
    What I mean is by saying “baby” I call to mind concepts such as “cuteness” and “potential” and “new parents” and other elements designed to elicit a positive emotional response from the reader.
   By simply changing the word used to “fetus” I can call to mind a messy mass of blood and tissue that has no emotional attachment with it.
    By talking about the “woman’s right to choose” I can frame an issue as being about equality and empowering women.
    By talking instead about a child’s right to choose…well…we don’t talk about that because that would interfere with the above argument. The well-being of the child is irrelevant to the discussion.
    Perhaps more than any issue the debate over abortion is an instance of the two sides talking past each other more than any other in U.S. politics today.
    When many people who are against abortion hear the word abortion, they actually hear the word “murder”. Por-choice carries the same connotation…they hear “We are all about protecting a woman’s right to choose to murder her baby.”
     I don’t believe the anti-life crowd (since the anti-abortion crowd is called pro-life, would that not make their opponent anti-life?) understands this. They are trying to frame the conversation in different ways.
    Now South Dakota is taking steps towards being a sounding board towards looking at abortion as murder, not as a medical procedure towards a non-human entity.
    I understand that is a bold statement and I stand behind it. To justify abortion you have to believe the growing life-form inside the body is not, as yet, a human being. However, once there is no question it has a heart beat, a brain, organs, etc., it is SOMETHING, some sort of entity. By framing it as not a baby you frame it as a non-human.
   One thing the anti-life crowd has working for them is the definition of life, much like the definition of what is or is not a planet, changes. Terry Schiavo showed that, among other examples.
    There really is no easy answer on the issue of abortion. Many people, myself included, will continue to view it as murder. Like all murders, we believe they are wrong and must be stopped and penalized when they happen. That is why there will continue to be cases such as the one in South Dakota.
    There have been a lot of tragedies in and because of the United States. Recent examples include some of the actions in Iraq, the recent spate of schoolhouse murders, and the numerous murders that go on every day in our country under the guise of “freedom of choice”. That is why many of us hope against hope that South Dakota will be successful in reducing the number of murders that take place in their state.
    As a disclaimer, I fully understand many people will dislike the words I chose in this piece. By the same token, I take exception to how the media at large frames the discussion, and I think this makes it a little more fair. And accurate.

Be Sociable, Share!