Carroll County Times
Carroll County Times Opinion

Davidson: On abortion, final determination should belong to the mother

With Judge Kavanaugh’s nomination to the highest court in the land, abortion is back in the limelight. As one might expect from a moderate I am torn on my opinions about this.

I am from a family that has always loved and cherished children and when we say we are going to blow one of them up we are talking about an 8-by-10 glossy and not weaponizing them against our enemies.


I am a male, well beyond child-rearing age, but had I ever encountered a situation where I was the father-to-be of a child I would certainly have done everything legal within my power to prevent anything close to an abortion. I find it a disgusting practice and should only be used in dire situations. However, I fully believe the final determination belongs to the mother.

I’ve been reading lots of opinion pieces on this topic from both sides of the aisle. In one, a woman who is a moderate Democrat made a lengthy argument that the final answer should center on when life begins. She made this argument as it was her belief this was as early as six days when some doctors have reported hearing heart beats.


My thoughts on this probably have roots in my business of raising race horses. In most instances, the stud fee is not payable until the resulting foal stands and nurses. My intent is not to try to draw any comparisons between humans and horses, though I do believe that life does not begin until an identity is established. Most parents will wait until after the baby is successfully born before making a final decision on a name. I believe after the baby has drawn its first breath of air and has been given a proper name this is the point that should be considered life beginning. With this interpretation I am saying a beating heart is not a viable person.

My preference is to leave religion out of discussions of public affairs as our society consists of many differing religions and all of them should be equal in a government that represents all of them. A writer to The Baltimore Sun suggested Genesis Chapter 2 where Adam (Hebrew for man) did not become Adam until God breathed life into him. Another writer that was Catholic rebutted him with another biblical reference and the Pope’s power to interpret the Bible for their church. If any person atheist or from any of the religions that oppose abortion, then by all means they should follow their religious beliefs but they shouldn’t codify them to force everyone else to follow their religion.

Another argument that I have read is that the pro-lifers are representing the unborn fetus as if it is a legal battle. My take on this is perhaps the unborn do deserve representation. If it is a trial proceeding the unborn should not win in every instance. Many prosecutors have winning records but they don’t win all of them. The mother should be heard also. I base this opinion on the fact that when I was born my mother was very ill. The doctor gave her the “choice” to save her own life or mine. She chose her own life and I applaud her for doing so. I always tell people she chose her and I chose me. I am happy to report we are both still alive and well. I’m 69 and she’s 97 and has not only survived my birth but she has conquered breast and colon cancer at various intervals in her life.

Then there are the religious zealots that believe God wants them to save the unborn. Many of this group are from families of former slave owners in the South. They have misinterpreted “God created man in God’s image” by flipping it around and creating God in their image. Having evolved from former slaves in Egypt I well know that in my own religion God needs no help. We have seen the power of the plagues launched against our enslavers and we retell the tale annually so that we never forget. I support informing an abortion seeker about this event only to be used in her final choice. As I said above, if her religion differs from mine telling her this will give her additional facts to consider. Let her make the final decision.

As to those people so concerned about the unborn many of them totally lose that concern once the children are born into horrible conditions and situations. They don’t want their tax money going to social programs that pay for long-term care of those born with un-treatable lifelong ailments, or to feed and educate those born to parents that can’t afford them. This is not intended as a justification for abortion, just a notable fact indicating possible hypocrisy or faux concern at best.

As to Judge Kavanaugh, I would much rather the Supreme Court have nine justices exactly like retiring justice Anthony Kennedy, where both sides would have equal chances of winning their cases. Most of the cases reaching the land’s highest court are as a result of our partisan politics. Laws were deliberately written in such a vague way in order to get enough votes to pass them that they need a court to decide what they mean.

When I hear a conservative say they want a judge to rule based on the Constitution, I interpret that to be a buzz word for reading the law the way their side would have wanted had they not had to make compromises to get it passed. Of course, the Democrats want the same thing but haven’t tied it to the Constitution which does not address any of these laws directly. If it did, there would have been no need to pass the laws.