Kristen Dragotto, A&E Editor

Abortion has always been a hot topic in the news, but this topic has become quite the controversial issue as the “Missouri Stands for the Unborn Act,” becomes a reality in our own backyard.

With St. Louis now becoming the home to only operating abortion clinic in the state of Missouri, it is evident that conservatives are more concerned with keeping their moral values than the well beings of others.

Pro-Lifers state that they are valuing life but fail to see the repercussions that belief can bring. The value of life they hold is placed on the unborn fetus rather than the woman who is carrying it. This ideology of the woman being less valuable is more than evident in the bill that was written to ban abortions in Missouri. The bill only makes exceptions for medical emergencies and fails to make exceptions for incidents of rape and incest—the two other exceptions that most conservatives will make when the topic of abortion is brought up.

Even if the bill was amended to allow exceptions for rape and incest, it still does not make it any better. By making rape an exception it would force the survivor to come forward, and where would you draw the line? Would the woman need a conviction, a police report or a rape kit? How is a woman expected to prove her pregnancy wasn’t by consensual actions, when most sexual assault survivors are not comfortable coming forward because the way the judicial system treats sexual assault.

The question that needs to be asked is why do exceptions have to be made at all? Why should a woman have to disclose her reasoning for wanting to end a pregnancy? She shouldn’t.

The truth of the matter is that banning abortions won’t make them go away. Women who want or need an abortion will find a way to get the procedure done. They will travel to another state or obtain one illegally.

The sad truth is that making abortions illegal and not accessible only makes it more dangerous—for the woman and the fetus. In the 1960s through the 1980s abortions were impossible to get and a lot of women died or had major health complications because of unsanitary conditions and lack of training by the person doing the procedure. Women were unable to seek proper medical attention after the fact, because if they sought the medical attention, they needed they could face criminal charges. We have come so far from that- why go back to it now?

I am not enthused by the idea of abortion, but I would rather it be safe and accessible than putting the lives of others at risk. I also do not feel it is anyone’s place to tell a woman what to do with her body. What I find even more frustrating about the situation is that conservatives fail in wanting to give woman access to proper reproductive health care. Adequate access to birth control methods would help eliminate the number of abortions needed.

Being anti-abortion does not mean you inherently support abortions; it supports agency over an individual’s body and the right to adequate health care. Allowing women to decide what happens to their bodies and giving them the opportunity to have it done in a safe and sterile setting is their right. Women should be able to make the decision without persecution or judgement.