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Monday, Apr. 21, 2014

Roe v. Wade hits home with me

Posted Friday, January 18, 2008, at 9:31 AM

There isn't an issue that I'm more impacted with morally and politically than abortion.

My story is personal and real and each year in late January I am reminded of the implications a historic U.S. Supreme Court ruling may have played in my life -- had I been born 20 years later -- instead of in 1953.

Last Tuesday, we observed the 35th anniversary of the Roe v. Wade court decision that was challenge to a Texas statute that made it a crime to perform an abortion unless a woman's life was at stake.

The case had been filed by "Jane Roe" an unmarried woman who wanted to safely and legally ender her pregnancy.

On January 22, 1973, siding with Roe, the High Court struck down the Texas law. In its ruling, the court recognized for the first time that the constitutional right to privacy "is broad enough to encompass a woman's decision whether or not to terminate her pregnancy (Roe v. Wade, 1973)."

Roe became the case that legalized abortion nationwide.

At the time the decision was handed down, nearly all states outlawed abortion except to save a woman's life or for limited reasons such as preserving the woman's health, or instances of rape, incest, or fetal anomaly.

Getting back to my story.

I was born April 25, 1953 to an unmarried woman in an Indianapolis home for unwed mothers.

We hear a lot these days in the post-Roe vs. Wade era about "choice" but most of the times it's associated with a woman's choice to have an abortion

My natural mother made the "choice" to give me up for adoption. Since I have never met my natural mother -- despite a somewhat limited search for her after my adopted parents passed away, I don't know the circumstances she was facing when she found out that she was going to have a baby.

For the decision she made, I am forever grateful.

And, I am also more than thankful that Roe v. Wade hadn't been passed yet.

If Roe v. Wade had been enacted, it would have paved the way for my mother to take the easy way out and make the "choice" to opt for abortion.

Getting an abortion in the year 1953 wasn't as easy as walking into a government-financed abortion clinic -- like it is today. There was also a definite social stigma attached to a young girl who got pregnant out of wedlock.

Pregnancies happened in 1953 just like today, but with abortion being illegal, many young girls with some strict parental guidance made the decision -- like my natural mother did -- to think about other alternatives.

My natural mother decided to go to a St. Elizabeth's Home, a Catholic Church operated home for unwed mothers, -- to carry out her pregnancy, deliver a young son and then put him up for adoption.

I was adopted into a wonderful loving home at the age of six weeks. My adopted parents are the only parents I ever knew. My adopted father passed away unexpectedly with a heart attack when I was just five years old. My adopted mother assumed the role of both parents and worked tirelessly -- many times with two jobs -- to support me and provide me with the opportunities that she never had.

My adopted parents were wonderful.

I was told by my mother years later when I was in high school that bringing me into their home fulfilled a dream of theirs of having a family that they medically could not make happen.

She often reminded me that because I was adopted, I was truly wanted in the family. The love I was given validated that feeling to me many, many times.

However, I often think about and pray for my natural mother and natural father.

I wonder where they are, or if they are still alive.

Being an only child, I wonder if my birth mother had other children later in her life that might be my half-siblings.

I wonder how things would have turned out in my life -- had my natural mother decided to keep me and raise me as her own.

I also think about how things would have turned out if Roe vs. Wade had passed prior to my birth.

Would I be here to even be writing this today?

Would my birth mother have made the right "choice"?

I don't know.

Nick is the assistant editor for the Greene County Daily World. He can be reached by telephone at 847-4487 or 1-800-947-4487 or by e-mail at nschneider@gcdailyworld.com

Showing most recent comments first
[Show in chronological order instead]

10-4 on that one... Unwed mom in a small country town in 1953 (Me included) ... less danger for the un-born from any where in US today

-- Posted by mikeh53 on Fri, Feb 8, 2008, at 5:37 AM

cool! Just wanted to make sure everything is cleared up! Happy February to everyone!

-- Posted by lilpatrietta on Fri, Feb 1, 2008, at 4:57 PM


that is all I'm saying...if you are going to vote in opposition, you need to support a solution in it's place. Pats on the back to you if you do both! Many people do not.

-- Posted by STILLHOPEFUL on Fri, Feb 1, 2008, at 4:38 PM

Wow, and one of your posts says this county has no intolerence? Hello? Nearly everything you post has intolerence throughout it. So if you have tattoos, love animals and are considered a 'hippie'by conservatives, your opinion is not valid? By the way, I posted MANY other links including from the FBI about the link between animal abuse and human abuse. Did you bother to read them? Or do you think the FBI agents might have tattoos also?

Have you ever READ the Bible? Did you read the part about God knowing every sparrow that falls from the sky? Do you think that is because he is up there shooting at them??? Did you skip the part about Jesus being about PEACE and love? Kindness and comfort? The Jesus I know would certainly stop and help a needlessly suffering animal, what kind of average person wouldn't do as much?? I suppose 'your' Jesus carries an Uzi? Does he look at all like Chuck Norris or Arnold? Wow. Your mind must be a scary place to go alone at night!

-- Posted by STILLHOPEFUL on Fri, Feb 1, 2008, at 4:28 PM

um...ya....I vote against abortion, and I help the unwanted chiidren. You're not making any sense. I just think you like to argue.

-- Posted by lilpatrietta on Fri, Feb 1, 2008, at 3:22 PM

Oh, and Greene County Patriot, you are either honestly mistaken on quoting me, or you are blatant liar. My guess is you think you are a clever debater and no one bothers to check your 'inaccuracies'. Rest assured, I check, you are wrong, either intentionally or not, in attempting to smear my opinion. Hmm..aren't you a 'christian' or claim to be? You might want to consider that pesky commandment, bear not false witness against your neighbor.

-- Posted by STILLHOPEFUL on Fri, Feb 1, 2008, at 1:52 PM

Clearly, there is some reading comprehension issue here. I said, if you are against one thing, you should support the alternative. I.E. if you oppose abortion, you should supporting unwanted children in some way.

Greeneco, I see your points and I agree. I think we are saying the same thing. My guess is some people are intentionally misreading.

-- Posted by STILLHOPEFUL on Fri, Feb 1, 2008, at 1:40 PM

Yes GCP! I am involved in the same sorts of things. I think some of you are looking at this issue as some sort of "population control" like these unborn children are just animals or something. You are forgetting something very important. These children have souls from the very moment they were conceived. Terminating their right to live is murder, plain and simple. The Bible says that "while they were in the womb, that God knew them"...paraphrased of course, but not taken out of context. He knew them, He loved them, just as He did with each and every one of us. We need to follow the example God has set for us and treat each unborn baby as a valuable human life. I believe the opportunity at life is a right that everyone has, even the unborn. It is 100x better to give them that chance instead of end their life early due to difficult circumstances or extreme pessimism by some. Of course I am against abortion and for adoption. If you vote in opposition to abortion, then you are voting in favor of adoption. I will go one step farther....I am for abstinence until marriage. Seems out-dated to many, but the Bible teaches it so I practice it. I believe if that is practiced then adoption agencies wouldnt be filling up as rapidly and the abortion rate would decrease dramatically.

-- Posted by lilpatrietta on Fri, Feb 1, 2008, at 11:52 AM

so, what are you doing?

-- Posted by lilpatrietta on Fri, Feb 1, 2008, at 11:00 AM

I will never support the alternative to life. Abortion is never the answer.

-- Posted by determined_girl08 on Thu, Jan 31, 2008, at 2:32 PM

I was addressing adults who can support/oppose issues by voting. It didn't occur to me any kids would be reading news online, props to you! I hope when you reach voting age you will consider that if you oppose something on one hand, you need to support the alternative to that issue, on the other.

-- Posted by STILLHOPEFUL on Thu, Jan 31, 2008, at 2:26 PM

Thanks Nick, As you may recall I am raising a 3 1/2 year old that was going to be aborted by his Meth addicted mother. He is a great kid, very bright, very loving... He can be something as he grows up... Also as a former fetus I am against abortion myself...

-- Posted by gus matthias on Thu, Jan 31, 2008, at 1:03 PM

"I have always felt strongly that if one is going to oppose legalized abortion, then they need to have at least 2-3 adopted kids in their own homes."

I completely disagree with this statement. I absolutely oppose abortion and I'm still in high school. So you're telling me that in order for me to oppose leagalized abortion that I need to adopt 2-3 kids thats ridiculous!

-- Posted by determined_girl08 on Thu, Jan 31, 2008, at 10:42 AM

I agree greeneco, 100% I have always felt strongly that if one is going to oppose legalized abortion, then they need to have at least 2-3 adopted kids in their own homes. Foster kids and work around the clock to fight child abuse and neglect. And make that adopted kids with special needs, the hard to place kids. That would lend a lot more weight to the plea to stop abortion, if those pleading were all picking up some of the pieces of the broken lives caught in the current system.

-- Posted by STILLHOPEFUL on Tue, Jan 29, 2008, at 6:50 PM

What a touching story. Thank you for having the strength and courage to let your voice be heard. I too agree. There have been almost 50 million babies aborted since Roe VS Wade. It is pure and simply murder. Once a child is conceived he or she is a living being. Life doesn't begin when the child is born it begins when the child is conceived. As for the comments about starving, beaten and unloved children, there is always adoption and if you know a child in any of these situations you should contact the authorities so they can intervene and protect that child. God didn't give us the right to choose so that we could murder his precious children.

-- Posted by jesusfreak on Fri, Jan 25, 2008, at 11:34 AM

Nick, you are very fortunate to have the life you have had, full of love and compassion, however, not all people are as fortunate and I still believe a woman needs to have that right to choose. I respect the decisions your natural and adoptive parents made and it would be wonderful if all people could find such a wonderful solution to an uncertain time. All of your parents were surely very special people.

-- Posted by Renee71 on Fri, Jan 18, 2008, at 8:48 PM

Well said, Nick. God bless people like you and people like your parents. If others had their level of compassion, imagine how our world would be.

-- Posted by hmmph on Fri, Jan 18, 2008, at 1:30 PM

What a great heart-warming story Nick! I am so thankful for writers like you that have the courage to say what they believe. I am also a strong opponent of abortion. I am currently in college, and this very important issue seems to come up almost every day. This issue will also determine who I will vote for in the 2008 presidential election, just as it has for local elections. Thanks again for writing about this. Maybe we can convince someone to change their position on abortion and help save the lives of the innocent unborn? Give the innocent a voice and vote pro-life!

-- Posted by lilpatrietta on Fri, Jan 18, 2008, at 10:43 AM

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