Written by Tad Britch, LPWV Secretary/Treasurer and candidate for West Virginia House of Delegates
Taken from tadbritch.com and http://www.lpwv.org/2009/07/07/264/
Abortion is a polarizing issue that appears to have no solution in sight. Some believe it is a minor side issue simply used to divide sides. I personally believe it is one of the most important issues we currently face. What could be more important than stopping the murder of an innocent human? This problem is currently reaching epidemic levels in the United States. In 2000, the United States allowed the execution of more than 1.3 million innocent lives. That means almost 3,600 innocent humans are killed on a daily basis. This should make everyone, not just those fighting for individual rights, stand up in protest.
The primary goal of libertarianism is to maximize and protect the rights of the individual. On that, I think we can all agree. However, the agreement on this issue appears to splinter when people begin to argue where life actually begins. Some approach the discussion from a religious by arguing the fetus has a soul from contraception. Others frame the discussion around scientific questions such as determining when the fetus has brain activity, or when it possess the ability to live independently from the mother I will approach this topic from neither point of view, as I believe both are irrelevant to the discussion at hand.
My belief is that a fetus is a human from the moment of contraception. This means the fertilized egg has the rights of all other humans. The logic behind this conclusion is quite simple. A fertilized egg, barring natural complications, is guaranteed to develop into a living human. If the progress of growth is not impeded by an outside source, a human will eventually develop from that egg. Thus, logic would dictate that ending the development of a fetus is ending a life. This seems like a pretty straightforward and easy conclusion to reach. Unfortunately, it seems many still do not have a firm grasp on this basic concept.
In addition to many libertarians, it seems the LP has decided against taking a firm stand for individual rights. Throughout the Preamble and Statement of Principles, the idea of individual liberty is discussed. Furthermore, section 1.0 of the platform titled Personal Liberty reads ”No individual, group, or government may initiate force against any other individual, group, or government.” This seems to be a direct contradiction to the official stance on abortion.
The official stance of the LP is as follows:
1.4 Abortion -Recognizing that abortion is a sensitive issue and that people can hold good-faith views on all sides, we believe that government should be kept out of the matter, leaving the question to each person for their conscientious consideration.
This statement is extremely effective for sidestepping the issue at hand. It also displays a lack of courage to stand up for the rights of the individual on a controversial issue. I would hope the LP, as well as other libertarians, would want the party to adopt a more courageous stance on this issue.
So, what about the rights of the mother? When someone partakes in a sexual act, they are well aware of the potential risk of becoming pregnant. In no way does this mean a human should be murdered because it is an inconvenience to the parents. I accept and recognize the need for abortion in cases of the mother’s health or rape. Even though these cases account for less than 3% of the abortions. Killing a baby because it may add a little stress to your life seems irrational and disgusting by every stretch of the imagination.
Whether you are a (l)ibertarian, or a Libertarian, it is time we stood up for the rights of the unborn individual and say no to abortion. Until Americans recognize this disgusting act for what it is, more than one million innocent children will be killed every year. Their crime was nothing more than being conceived by parents who are not able to handle their responsibilities.
**The views in this article belong to the author and are not official positions of the LPWV.**