LETTER: Sign’s message really about religion

I am an unapologetic 36-year-old atheist woman who has chosen not to have children.

Re: “Banner’s message needs to be heard”

I am an unapologetic 36-year-old atheist woman who has chosen not to have children. I have never had an abortion but I know many women who have, and who resent the notion that they are supposed to feel guilty for doing so. They don’t, we don’t, get over it. Christianity has been the driving force behind the persecution of basically everyone that isn’t white, male and straight for thousands of years.

Maybe they should have a vigil for everyone who ever lost their lives at the hands of Christians. It is laughable to say they are challenging the status quo when they are the status quo. Women have fought hard against them for hundreds of years to gain the right to their own bodies. The reason why this sign is offensive is because the actual message (hidden behind the passive aggressive one), is that it is a woman’s civic duty to reproduce no matter what the circumstances, as if her body were nothing more than a receptacle for God’s love.

You cannot argue the right for life without arguing that women should not be allowed to make decisions about their own bodies. A female bear will carry a fertilized egg for months, then terminate if she cannot get enough body fat to feed her young in spring, and yet I don’t see them mourning all the unborn baby bears.

I agree it is fundamental to a democratic society that information and public awareness of issues be available, and yet look how long and hard we had to fight against Christian-based policies to allow women the right and access to contraceptives and abortions. The right to choose to die for people suffering also seems like a no-brainer. Yet we are only seeing this legislation passed in 2015 for the first time because of Christian organizations that are not rooted in reality or the social good.

I’d like to say that Christian drivel doesn’t bother me and I am above it, but I think about all the women who fought so hard and sacrificed so much before me and for me. The life I lead and love is due to their sacrifices, so I feel responsible to push back. Responses in the paper have been hypocritical and insincere: they try to cover up their Christian-based message by making it seem like their organization’s main goal is to educate about birth control, compare women having abortions to Nazis murdering millions of Jewish people (that’s a cheap shot, i.e., you know who else doesn’t want women to have rights? Terrorists!), and try to discredit organizations that have the mission to help women, no strings attached.

This organization is a wolf in sheep’s clothing, pretending to be saddened by all the unborn babies, but really angry that people like me don’t believe in or follow their religion. Luckily they don’t get to tell me what it means to be a woman. That is a decision I get to make for myself and one I will never take for granted.

Nicki Dallmann, Nelson