The Dark Ages - 27 East


Southampton Press / Opinion / Letters / 1959451

The Dark Ages

Fewer than 25 percent of Americans are Catholic. Some 29 percent of Americans self-identify as Evangelicals, including 22 percent of Catholics. That is, roughly, 35 percent of U.S. citizens identify with one or both of those belief systems.

Catholicism considers life to begin at conception. The Evangelicals are late-comers to claiming that belief, more for ideological-political reasons than because of a historic faith. These political action groups chose to ignore that, labels aside, a considerable percentage of those two groups of U.S. citizens believe that Roe v. Wade should continue women’s constitutional right to abortion. Nonetheless, powerful organizations claiming to represent those two religious minorities are dictating to the rest of our country whether women are to continue to make their own decisions about their own bodies.

Certainly no one who has either experienced or witnessed a six-week miscarriage would ever consider that lump of blood to be “blessed with a soul,” or whatever else it might take to qualify as “life,” or worthy of “personhood.”

I had a six-week miscarriage of a honeymoon pregnancy. Had I not had that timely miscarriage, in agreement with my husband, I was planning to have an abortion.

It was not that I didn’t want children. On the contrary, I had told my husband, as a condition of our marriage, that I wanted to have four children. But at the time of the unplanned pregnancy, my husband was at the beginning of his work life; I was at the beginning of my second career. I wanted to continue to work, to face the challenges of a male-dominated career, both while pregnant and as a mother.

That meant that we had to have a full year of a professional nanny’s salary in the bank before I could become pregnant. We sure as hell didn’t have such savings just six weeks after we got married. We did have that sum in the bank one year later, when I did become pregnant with the first of my four children.

It might be enlightening for our U.S. Supreme Court justices to keep in mind, if they ever knew it, that a key article of faith of Hitler and the Nazis was the role of women in the Third Reich: “Kinder, Kirche, Kuche.” (“Children, Church, Kitchen.”) A familiar slogan, popular in the 1950s, assigns a similar role to women in our world: “Barefoot and pregnant.”

Will we allow Justice Samuel Alito’s twisted, fallible, anti-intellectual and flawed reasoning about Roe v. Wade, and about our Constitution, to take us back to those dark ages?

Evelyn Konrad

Attorney at law