Saturday, September 01, 2007

Almost Aborted Jew Speaks Against Abortion

Julia Gorin takes the stage of the Gotham Comedy Club in New York City. After amusing the audience by wiping off the microphone from the previous comic who specialized in messy sound effects, she begins to engage the obviously liberal audience in a series of pro-Israel, pro-republican and, yes, even pro-life jokes. Brave members of the audience laugh, while Julia's thick New York accent, in a way, conveys truth more than jokes.

This is as opposed to her appearance to a roomful of Republicans in New York during the Republican National Convention a few years ago. They were laughing hysterically and cheering for her—and many of the jokes were the same that she used on the humorless liberal crowd. What happened to the "there's no real difference between conservatives and liberals" line?

But I was drawn to Julia about a year and a half ago when I heard her talk about her pro-life views in an act, and I quickly discovered that she is much more than a comedian. She is a blogger (who blogs mostly about Clinton's crusade against the Serbs in order to distract the country from his personal problems) and a frequent contributor to many online and print magazines. (She even managed to trick the Huffington Post into letting her blog there for a while before they caught on.)

But what caught my attention first were her articles about abortion. I can say with confidence that it is much easier to find black pro-lifers than Jewish pro-lifers—and that's not meant as an insult. The pro-choice movement has sneaked into both communities. Blacks—even religious blacks—are generally very pro-choice in urban areas. I myself, coming from Portland, almost want to scream in delight every time I'm at a convention and see blacks standing up for their community. Julia is, to my knowledge, the first Jewish pro-lifer with whom I correspond regularly.

It's not surprising she's pro-life either

Like most Soviet-era fetuses conceived in Russia by couples who were already parents, I was scheduled for abortion as a matter of course. In a society where abortion was the only form of birth control, it wasn't uncommon to meet women who had double-digit abortion counts. Often a couple would schedule the appointment before they even stopped to remember that they wanted a second child.
Ironically in the Former Soviet Union, where abortion isn't considered a basic right but rather something you just do to prevent children, it was Julia's mom's abortionist who saw that her mother had a bit of reservation about having the abortion and sent her away. In America, pro-choicers would lynch such an abortionist—abortion is the woman's choice after all. At the same time these people are against any kind of legislation that gives women certain kinds of information—or, come to think of it, any kind of legislation in the abortion debate at all, unless it's about keeping little old Catholic ladies from praying the rosary right in front of the clinic. Julia's husband, also born in the Soviet Union, was almost aborted as well.

In 2003, Julia did a humorous reflection on Roe vs. Wade, saying:

The bad news for Planned Parenthood is that on this, the 30th anniversary of the landmark Roe v. Wade decision, abortion rates are at an all-time low since 1974. Moreover, they're down by 300,000 a year since 1990—suggesting that more women are keeping their babies since there's some cache to bearing a former president's child.

She also discussed Planned Parenthood's classy behavior right after September 11th, when they offered all of their services—the most wicked being abortion—to the women of New York City.

That week, the folks at Planned Parenthood were so abortion-happy that when I walked by they pulled me inside as well. I said, "But I'm not pregnant." They said, "A sale's a sale!" I met a guy in the holding pen there—they gave him an abortion too.
Even in Russia today, more women are aborting than having children. Julia would have been just one of millions of victims of abortion there. This article has an amazing narrative about Julia's family and its ties to abortion.

Rather than debate what it is we're killing, we should consider what we may be saving—for our sakes as much as for 'its' own. When you choose to abort, you alter the course of history.

Indeed, the abortions of her mother have had their toll on both of them:

My mother today aches to have more 'close people,' as she calls immediate family, and mourns how few are those whose love is unconditional. Every time I get into a car or plane, I'm paranoid about my safety for her sake. Every time I think of taking a foreign writing assignment, I think of her and don't. Every time I imagine moving to another city, I think of my parents' desolation.
Julia, like me, recognizes that abortion is wrong because it's wrong. There don't need to be long, philosophical exegeses discussing what the fetus is: it's wrong because it's killing a person and thus depriving a human being of life and all of society their contribution.

For all the reluctant mothers-to-be out there, you should know that when you're having even a momentary second thought, someone you can't see is whispering in your ear. Fortunately for my husband's and my families, on the third occasion our parents listened.


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