Like a paedophobic godmother from the pages of the Brothers Grimm, elderly feminist Anne Summers continues her campaign to eliminate inconveniently conceived children

No one can be "pro-life" and a feminist, writes the hoary harridan in an article in the Fairfax press. Why?  Because "feminism boils down to one fundamental principle and that is women's ability to be independent." And an essential precondition of independence is "the right to control one's fertility." Or to put it in less refined and more accurate terms, since it's not the fertility that's at issue as much as what the fertility has led to, the right to kill the unborn baby within you if it doesn't suit you to bring it to birth.

But how did the baby come to be in the womb of our independent feminist? Well, unless it got there by parthenogenesis she must have allowed a man access to her sacred space. She mightn't have wanted the pregnancy but she did want the thrill of a man inside her. Where is the independence in that? How can a woman consider herself independent if she needs a man to provide the pleasure that, if the "safe and effective contraception" referred to approvingly elsewhere in the article doesn't work, will lead to the object of inconvenience you require to abort?

It is illusory to describe a woman as independent who depends on men for anything. Whether she "chooses" to depend or whether society or patriarchy or whatever force her to she is still dependent. The woman who wishes to be truly independent will, for sex, not have recourse to men but to her vibrator, or perhaps to what I understand is termed "scissoring" with another (preferably independent) woman. Few of course take this option so the dependence on men remains, regrettable as nature's dispositions might be to the Summers and other cold-hearted relics of the great brassiere-burning revolution of yesteryear. No doubt if planning the human race she would have done a better job and not made men and women complementary to each other.

Wanting physical pleasure with men but not wanting what might result is not an entitlement to abortion. Another life, real or potential it doesn't matter which, has been created out of lust or love and its right to live is more important than a woman's "right" to do what she wants without accepting the consequences. A cynic might say it's not so much the fertility that needs controlling as the will.

The only justification for abortion I can see is if it spares us some unsavoury characters of the type we'd be better off without. Imagine no Stalin, Pol Pot or Mao Tse-tung. Indeed, but for fate abortion might have spared the world the presence of Anne Summers, but whether she would have regarded it as justified in that case is a moot point.

Thursday 26 January 2012

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