Thursday, July 7, 2022

The Wrinkle: Abortion Rights, Vaccine Passports, and Bodily Autonomy

The Supreme Court’s overturning of Roe v. Wade marks an enormous defeat for women’s rights in the United States. We must not underestimate its importance, and how difficult it will be to overcome. There is a slew of things to consider about how this defeat occurred, and about how supporters of women’s rights and abortion rights can best organize to win a decisive and irreversible victory for a right that so many of us, mistakenly, thought had already been secured.

I’ll go over a number of those considerations in another essay. But here I want quickly to break out and discuss one wrinkle that has developed during the past two years—one that is of serious consequence for the abortion-rights argument because it directly touches on its essential element, and one that has enmired many leftists and abortion-rights supporters in confusion and contradiction that have weakened their abortion-rights position in ways they do not want to acknowledge.

That wrinkle is the dominant leftist attitude toward the mandatory covid vaccination policies, an attitude that is based, I think, on a strange and increasingly common epistemological stance—an inability, or stubborn refusal, to think things through honestly and consistently, considering all the arguments without pre-ordained conclusion.

Failing to have a consistent position based on bodily autonomy in regard to the forced intrusions of vaccine mandates/passports and abortion criminalization is a mistake of grave consequence, politically and epistemologically. Those who don’t recognize that mistake are undermining their political position in support of abortion rights, fooling themselves, and confusing and harming the movement.

And here’s the proof:

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