MSNBC broadcasted a “town hall” meeting yesterday with the Republican candidates, timed to occur just before the Wisconsin primary. The public service billed event was nothing more than a public cry by MSNBC “just watch this station and buy our sponsors’ products”. And what an event they suddenly had.
MSNBC’s Chris Mathews asked Donald Trump about his position of Pro-Life and then pulled the trigger after Trump confirmed abortion should be against the law. Mathews asked, should the woman be punished? After a few hems and haws, Trump said yes, there should be some form of punishment for the woman.
Compared to most things Trump has said, this situation was totally logical. If there is a law against abortion and abortion is likened to murder, shouldn’t someone who initiates an abortion face punishment?
The pro-life, pro-choice worlds seemed to stop and then both exploded in denouncing Trump.
Pro-lifers were the most indignant. Appearing to beat their chests, the pro-life supporters affirmed that they never intended that the woman would be punished (punishing the person performing the abortion was enough). Hmmm.
Where’s the logic. Abortion is either wrong or it is not. At the present time, the right to an abortion is the law of the land so this is an hypothetical discussion of what might happen if Roe v Wade was overturned. But women and men of good conscious ought to take notice.
Pro-lifers do not see a continuum (conception to viability to birth) and once conception has taken place, pro-lifers believe it becomes the woman’s responsibility to see the pregnancy through to birth.
There is no morning after pill, or medical procedures to end unwanted pregnancies. Once pregnant, its full term or bust. (Some anti-abortion supporters do allow exceptions for rape, incest, and risk to the woman’s health.)
Unwanted pregnancies are regrettably part of life. Further complicating pregnancies are changes to the mother’s health, her economic ability to raise a child, and medical changes to the condition of the fetus itself.
The pro-life group simply has the wrong objective. Rather than outlawing abortion (where punishing the woman is the logical outcome), a better goal is eliminating unwanted pregnancies. In such a world, the decision to abort or not could be based upon medical reasons.
Chris Mathews grilling of Donald Trump accomplished two outcomes.
- First, it displayed how shallow Trumps understanding is when presented complex social issues.
- Second, it gratuitously put into focus how hypocritical the pro-life movement is.
The unbelievable aspect of this kerfuffle is Trump supporters do not care about whether Trump is pro-life or pro-choice. They support Trump for economic reasons and a belief (maybe mistakenly) that Trump can make life better.
Trump did not see the curve ball coming from Mathews and missed it completely. Thanks Donald.