My views on abortion and teen pregnancy are decidedly liberal- I feel that if a teenage girl is not ready to become a parent or just flat-out does not want to be one, she should have access to a safe and legal abortion. If my daughter becomes pregnant at a young age, I plan to counsel her on all of her options including abortion. I will support whatever she decides and help her set up a plan of action. It is my duty as a mother to be sure that she is making the decision that gives her the best future possible.
According to the Daily Mail, Republican Louisiana Senator Bill Cassidy has a pregnant 17-year old daughter, due with her first child later this summer. He is quoted as saying;
‘Earlier this year, Laura and I learned we will become grandparents this summer,’ Cassidy said in a statement provided to the Times-Picayune of New Orleans. ‘Our children have been the greatest blessing of our lives and we welcome our grandchild as a joyous addition to our family.
‘Our daughter now faces a more challenging future than her peers. She has our unconditional love and support.’
As a member of the Bi-Partisan Congressional Pro-Life Caucus, it is pretty clear how he feels on the topic of pregnancy. He does not believe in abortion
and goes to great political lengths to promote this view. It is a free country and of course, he is entitled to his opinion, as am I. However, I do wonder about whether or not he imposed these views on his pregnant teen daughter or if he allowed her to consider the option of terminating the pregnancy. With him being in the position he is in I have trouble believing he would have supported her had she wanted to have an abortion and I find the idea of this teenage girl having a baby to side with her father’s political platform to be very sad.
It is also worth noting that according to The Guttmacher Institute
, as of July 1 of this year, Louisiana is a state where a woman seeking an abortion is forced to have an ultrasound done with a doctor explaining the images to her. I guess whoever passed this law envisioned a woman (or 17-year old child) having an epiphany on the ultrasound table and deciding out of sheer emotion to keep a baby that she had previously decided she either could not support, did not want, or a combination thereof. I cannot imagine preying on the fragile emotions of a pregnant teenage girl in order to manipulate her into deciding to keep a baby she is possibly very ill-equipped to raise.
I really do hope that this decision was made considering what she may want in life. The father is still going to be able to pursue his dreams even though he committed the same “crime”- it seems monumentally unfair that this young girl is left in the dust and has to raise a baby while trying to finish high school and then, possibly, college. She will have the baby this summer and then begin her senior year in high school- that is a tall order for a young lady. Bearing the “shame” of being a teen mother and then facing scrutiny from her classmates and teachers could be a very difficult road to travel.
I would like to think that Senator Cassidy has considered more than just his political career in counseling his daughter on her unplanned pregnancy. And if it happens to be that this young lady wholeheartedly agreed that she should have this child, more power to her. It is my sincere hope that this is the case as I can’t think of many things sadder than having a baby at 17 because my father told me to.
You can reach this post’s author, Valerie Williams, on Twitter or via e-mail at [email protected]