Tuesday, February 26, 2008


I usually don't spend time arguing with commenters slagging me in random comments threads, but I was struck by this one by "yug."

uh-oh, you acknowledged that there are people who are not opposed to legal abortion but have moral qualms. you're on the atrios shitlist now, man. prepare to have your name turned into a nasty shorthand.

While I don't know exactly where Mr. yug got his opinion of my views from, I certainly have never expressed anything like this. Of course there are people who have "moral qualms" about abortion but who nonetheless support legal abortion. I'm not one of those people, though as I'm unlikely to ever personally be faced with the decision of whether to continue my pregnancy that isn't especially important. So, yes, these Saletans exist and I am not a Saletan Denier.

But if you believe in the legal right to have an abortion then you are... pro-choice. That's pretty much the definition of it. You can be "pro-choice" and spend your life trying to convince women not to have them, or writing moralistic screeds in newspapers about how horrible it is to have an abortion. That is, you can be pro-choice and still determine that you are qualified to sit in judgment of people who have them. You won't be my best friend, and you might not find lots of friends in the feminist and progressive communities generally, but it isn't inconsistent. I also disagree with the general Saletanic view that being pro-choice but shaming people who have them is somehow the best political strategy for keeping abortion legal, but I suppose reasonable people can differ on that.

But yes! Saletans exist! How could I deny their existence? Editors love to publish them!