Green Bananas: Therefore, Don’t Have Abortions

Posted by Sarah Moglia on March 30th, 2012 – 4 Comments – Posted in Women's Rights

Hey folks, Sarah here.

I attended the Reason Rally this weekend (which was AMAZING) and then the American Atheists conference afterward. Since I’m an employee of the Secular Student Alliance, I spent almost all of my time in the vendor room, telling people about what the SSA does. Not too far behind me was the infamous “Secular Pro-Life” table.

I ignored them for at least a day. It took so much willpower, but I did. I saw Rebecca Watson come in and interview them. I tried to stay away. Then, I saw a coworker talking to them…and I couldn’t resist anymore.

I went up to them, and one of the women (I don’t remember her name) was giving an analogy as to why abortion was wrong. She started it over so I could hear it. I’m paraphrasing to the best of my memory, but her example was as follows:

“Imagine you have a bunch of overripe bananas and a bunch of green bananas. Which ones are you going to throw away, the green bananas or the overripe bananas? The overripe ones, of course, because the green bananas still have the potential to become good bananas, whereas the overripe ones will not.”

Trying to avoid WTF-facing at her, I replied, “Okay, but say you’re stranded in the jungle and you’re carrying tons of food that will not go bad anytime soon, and you come across a bunch of green bananas. You’re at max carrying capacity, so are you going to throw out good food and pick up the green bananas, or keep the food that’s good already?”

She seemed taken aback and said, “Well that’s a good point; I’ve never thought of it that way.” I know it wasn’t the best analogy (I was working with what she gave me), but I was trying to point out problems with overpopulation. I wish I had the quick wits of Surly Amy, because when I relayed the story to her later, she said “So does that mean if a baby wants my chair I should kill myself so it can have my chair?”

We kept talking, and it became harder and harder to keep my cool. I will agree with one thing they said, and that was the importance of creating social programs that are more supportive (including better/more efficient welfare services, daycare services, etc.).

Other than that, they presented bunk science and inaccurate data and terrible arguments. It’s a bad scientist who assumes all statistics are the same and doesn’t take compounding factors into considering when presenting data. It’s a dishonest scientist who INTENTIONALLY misrepresents data (like saying “pro-life” Mauritius has the lowest maternal death rate but “pro-choice Ethiopia has one of the highest, while leaving out “that the per capita GDP of Mauritius is $13,670 vs. Ethiopia’s of $365.”). These “Secular Pro-Lifers” are either bad scientists, dishonest people, or both (my inclination is a mix of both).

Of course, why do facts matter when you can present an emotional appeal to people?

My favorite part was when they claimed that “two wrongs don’t make a right” as far as rape victims getting abortions go. Of course, neither of the women who were saying that had been raped, so I think it’s just peachy that they think they can talk for every rape survivor out there.

I don’t remember the entire conversation (I was really trying not to let out a feral cry of womanhood to call everyone who supports women’s rights to my side), but I do remember some misquoted data of theirs– that supposedly, only 43% of people who get abortions are religious– which, if what they were suggesting was true, that would mean that  most people who get abortions are secular. That’s patently false, as 73% of women who get abortions report a religious affiliation. They also said the reason why most women get abortions are due to economic reasons (I’m surprised they didn’t just come out and say that women who get abortions are evil baby-killers), when in reality, people seek abortions for many different reasons, including economic reasons, but also including not wanting a fucking child as a reason.

One of my favorite pieces of information that I keep in my back pocket for discussions like this is the blatant Catholic hypocrisy on abortions– Catholic women get abortions at a higher rate than women of any other religion (The abortion rate for Catholic women was 22 per 1,000 women; the rate for Protestants was 18 per 1,000 women.).

Anyway, I’m not going to link to their site or give their bullshit ideas any more credit. Just remember: green bananas, so don’t have an abortion.


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  1. Crazypants says:

    The problem with how the abortion issue is being dealt with is that they are merely attacking a symptom of a larger problem….lack of education and money. In areas where people are well educated and have the basic components for a decent life, the abortion rates are low. In fact, I would say that with enough education and everyone being adequately provided for that there could be nearly no abortion at all. Instead, the anti-choicers want to leave people uneducated and poor and just take away their rights.

    I don’t see how anyone could say it’s more moral to make a law rather than just fixing the problems that lead to abortion in the first place. If the issue is economics, then work towards creating jobs instead of wasting time, money, and effort on just creating more laws.

    There’s always someone who will say rich people get abortions too, but the rich don’t even have to rely on abortion being legal in this country. They can go off to another country to deal with pregnancies.

  2. FreakingScholastic says:

    “neither of the women who were saying that had been raped,”

    I might be missing something here, but do you really need to be raped in order to have a voice in this issue? Why should someone be able to dismiss others’ arguments just because they haven’t had terrible things happen to them?

    Overall, though, nice article

  3. Sarah Moglia says:

    “I might be missing something here, but do you really need to be raped in order to have a voice in this issue? Why should someone be able to dismiss others’ arguments just because they haven’t had terrible things happen to them?”

    I think it’s unfair to make decisions for other people in general, but especially when you don’t know what they’ve been through. It’s easy to say, “Oh, well I would never get an abortion, even if I was raped,” but until you’ve been put in the situation of an unplanned pregnancy (especially one from a rape), you don’t know what you would do. It’s just really shitty to put a judgement on a woman who’s been in a terrible situation, especially since you cannot empathize.

  4. Frank Bellamy says:

    Hi Sarah,

    Any particular reason you didn’t post this on your own blog?

    For what it’s worth, one of the women at the Secular Pro-Life table, Kelsey, is a friend of mine, and I have no reason to doubt her integrity.

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