I hadn’t been following the story of Nadya Suleman until my sister alerted me to it this morning.  In reading a quick news story on the topic, I found that a recent conversation about the Freedom of Choice Act shed some interesting light on the whole controversy.

So before we tackle the controversy of Nadya, let’s take a quick detour to look at the Freedom of Choice Act.  It can be argued that FOCA is not the imminent threat that so many believed it was, and that while we’re all fighting FOCA, other legislation is slipping by.  It just might be the old “hey, look over there!” tactic.  Even if this is the case, the language of FOCA is the fruit of our society’s mindset towards child-bearing, and it’s worth examining.

FOCA declares: 

    It is the policy of the United States that every woman has the fundamental right to choose to bear a child, to terminate a pregnancy prior to fetal viability, or to terminate a pregnancy after fetal viability when necessary to protect the life or health of the woman.

Let’s break that first part down.

Every woman.  That means that regardless of age, race, creed, state of life, sexual orientation, economic standing, education, etc.

Fundamental right.  Words mean things, and “fundamental” isn’t just thrown in there to make the bill’s word count higher. “Fundamental right” is something we as humans are entitled to based on our innate human dignity.

To choose ….  The rest can go without explanation.

This reflects a very definite view of children.  They are not gifts, but rights.  I, as a woman, have a right — just by being a woman– to have a child.  It is not a gift given by God, but something owed to me.  Likewise, if I don’t want it, I can get rid of it.  Because it’s my right.

That means that children can be conceived or not conceived, carried to term or not carried to term.  It is the choice of solely the woman to decide.  For most, this results in the belief that a woman has a right to terminate pregnacy .

In the case of this California woman, she has chosen to conceive and chosen to carry the babies to term.  It was her body, her choice, her right.

So why is she being attacked?

We have created a society that views a pre-born child as the property of the woman carrying him or her.  So should we be surprised when Nadya Suleman was questioned about implanting eight embryos (instead of the usual three), she replied with: “Those are my children, and that’s what was available and I used them. So, I took a risk. It’s a gamble. It always is.”

Should we be surprised that Nadya’s reasoning for choosing to be a single mother of 14 kids was, “All I wanted was children. I wanted to be a mom.”  And so she did whatever she needed to do to satisfy her desire.

I know some women out there think she’s crazy for wanting to be a mom.  But I don’t think that’s a problem.  I think the problem is that children have become a commodity.  Something you have a right to bear or a right to terminate; to be had if you want them, aborted if you don’t.

She’s a product of our society.  And yet our society tears her down.  Why?  Apparently she made the wrong “choice.”

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