I know a lot about hypocrisy. As a young woman in her teens, I would have told you that I was pro-life, that abortion was murder and that women who had abortions did so because they were selfish, cold and uncaring. At the same time, I would have also called myself a defender of women’s rights, all the while saying that abortion had nothing to do with women and equality. *groans with embarrassment*
I also knew beyond any shadow of a doubt- and here’s where the hypocrisy comes in- that if I faced an unintended pregnancy- not an unlikely prospect given the fact I was sexually active at 16- I would seek an abortion in the blink of an eye. (For the record, I did feel that victims of rape and incest were exempt- they got a free pass, so to speak. Not once did I ever follow that line of thought to its logical pro-choice conclusion. Ugh. Did I mention I was still pretty young?)
Abortion was wrong except for rape, incest and ME.
In short, *heavy sigh* I was a big, fat, raving, self-righteous, piece-of-crap hypocrite.
But here’s where I make amends.
I feel my history of hypocrisy puts my in a unique position
to be judgmental to make certain pithy observations. Today when I face anti-choice individuals, young and old alike, I’ve got their number. I have the inside scoop on why they would deny a woman control over her own body.
It comes down to control, ironically enough. A lot of spewing about the ‘other’ having no self-control, when you’re really projecting the lack of control you feel in your own life.
It comes down to being judgmental. Of having the luxury to stand safely where you are without regard for the life and circumstances of another person.
It comes down to believing that, for everyone but you (and those you love, of course), life and its decisions are black and white; that choices are easy and that they can be viewed in isolation of everything else, in a vacuum.
It also comes down to that ugly desire to feel superior to another person. Surely if a woman is pregnant and doesn’t want to be, she must have done something wrong- she neglected something. I would never be that stupid. I have done everything right. I have seen to all my responsibilities and have the empty womb to prove it.
I hereby decree that she must face the consequences, become a mother and muddle through, goddamnit! Why?
Well, because I say so, that’s why. Because it’s the right thing to do. And I get to decide what ‘right’ is, by the way.
So says the hypocrite. So said that girl I once was. Ah, but then…
…hypocrisy, if you’re lucky, has a funny tendency to come crashing down around you. If that happens, it’ll hurt. But when the dust settles, you have a choice. Some will choose to bury their heads even deeper into that black and white sand rather than face their own bullshit.
While others…well, others begin to find their truth. They will finally begin to embrace the fact that they don’t have all the answers and that ultimately, control is an illusion.
And that that’s OK.