From The Left: Undecided On Measure 1

Last week, I wrote about my stances on the constitutional amendments and statutory initiatives North Dakotans will be voting on come November, 4th. At that time, I stated that I wanted to save my comment on Measure 1 until a later post.

The truth is, as I write this, I am an undecided voter. A little less than three weeks from Election Day I don’t know how I am going to vote on Measure 1, the so called “Right to Life” amendment.

I am normally annoyed by undecided voters this close to election. By mid-October most people who are paying attention to candidates and issues and whom have taken the time to become informed have had plenty of chances to make up their mind about how they are going to vote. Sadly, far too often in our system, it is a small number of undecided voters who spend little time learning about candidates and issues who swing an election on way or another.

I have decided to share with all of you why I may vote for and why I may vote against Measure 1.

Why I May Support Measure 1:

As I have stated here before, even though I am a Democrat, I am pro-life . In all reality, I really consider myself to be pro-baby and I feel it is an inherent right of all humans to work to make this world a better place for both this generation and the next. I feel that every abortion is a tragedy, and I will always work hard to create a world in which every pregnancy is seen as a blessing, every new life as a gift, and the lives of both babies and mothers are respected by all aspects of society.

Something else that many of you may be surprised to learn is that I am also very much against Physician assisted suicide and euthanasia. I feel they are deadly forms of discrimination against the elderly, people who are sick, and people with disabilities.  It saddens me that many of us in our society hold such a low opinion on the value of these peoples lives that they feel we are better off if a medical provider assists them in killing themselves.

My hope is that if Measure 1 passes, it can be a step towards other laws that can help us to place an increased value on life from womb to tomb in the state.

Why I May Oppose Measure 1

As I have stated before, I am not a big fan of most anti-abortion laws. I feel a vast majority of laws are more about attempting to make Abortion illegal rather than working to address the root causes of abortion. If Measure 1 passes, it is not going to do anything to reduce unwanted pregnancy. In fact, many of the loudest supporters of Measure 1 are the exact people who have worked to prevent legislation for comprehensive sex education and free and available birth control.

I have also had some very dear friends who have had multiple problems with fertility.  I have two little girls who are very important in my life who were born after IVF services (in fact, the struggles their parents had conceiving was one of the contributing factors to me becoming pro-life). Currently, North Dakota’s only three infertility doctors oppose Measure 1, saying that they will stop offering IVF services if the measure passes due to the risk.

There have also been fears that future activist’s judges may use Measure 1 as a tool to outlaw birth control pills, the morning after pill and other forms of birth control.

Now the supporters of this bill continue to claim this is not true, and they have personally attacked the Doctors who have spoken out publically against it. However, don’t kid yourself for a second, many supporters of measure one would be glad to see all of those things happen.

I think the bottom line is, I don’t trust the supporters of Measure 1 when they tell us the law will not affect birth control and infertility issues.

Before November 4th, I will make up my mind on this issue. I just hope everybody else takes as long of a look at it as I do.

Rob Port is the editor of SayAnythingBlog.com, a columnist for the Forum News Service, and the host of the Rob (Re)Port on Fargo-based WDAY AM970 from noon-2pm weekdays.

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