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Wednesday, September 26, 2012

A Short Conversation

As most of you read on Monday, I went to class wear my Pro-Choice,Anti-Coat Hanger button.  For those of you wondering, it looks something like this:

 Anyway, most people didn't even notice it, much less say anything, until my last class.  I walked in kinda early (as per usual with me) and was immediately engaged in a conversation by two classmates, and I would like to share it with you.

Classmate #1:  No...  coat hangers?  Why no coat hangers?  Do you really have something against coat hangers?

JAX: Yeah, if you plan to use one to give yourself an abortion.  (It always shocks me when people have no idea about coat hanger abortions...)

Classmate #1: What? No!  Why would anyone do that?  DO people really do that?

JAX: Unfortunately, some women find themselves in undesired situations in which they become pregnant before they want to be and cannot afford services at the clinic.  If she's desperate enough or feels trapped, she looks to the closet for freedom.

Classmate #1: I had never heard of that.  How awful!

Classmate #2: How exactly is some one not able to 'afford' the clinic?

JAX: Do you know how much an abortion costs?

Classmate #2: I know they are free if you are low income.

JAX: No, ma'am, they are not.  The exact cost of an abortion depends on many factors, such as how far along the pregnancy is, the kind of procedure and anesthetic that are used, and at the clinic I happen to escort at, the cost of a typical abortion is roughly $600 plus or minus.  Low income patients can receive up to a 40%, but even that leaves the patient to pay roughly $240, and for a low income patient, that is a LOT of money.  Even if someone were to find a clinic willing to waive that and give them a free abortion, there is still the fact that there are a limited number of abortion clinics here in the south, and with local clinics getting shut down left and right, their are a limited number of people that can be seen at them, so there can be scheduling conflict that prevent you from being seen.  If you have to drive a long distance to get the clinic, how do you afford the gas?

Classmate #2: Well, there are plenty of services that provide free transportation to clinics.

JAX: You are talking about the National Network of Abortion Funds.  You're right, there are quite a few organizations in that network.  Wanna guess how many Alabama has?  None.  I am currently working to start a non-profit organization who's goal will be to solve that problem.  

Classmate #2: Well, you can't tell me that they don't have friends or family willing to help them out.

JAX: Yes, I can, especially if they are part of a very conservative group family and friends.

Classmate #2:  I guess I am just trying to say that if there's a will, there's a way.

JAX: You are absolutely right, and if you are a woman with that mindset and no funds, you turn to your closet.

At that point the professor walked in, but I am pretty sure she was flabbergasted anyway.

What do you guys think of this conversation?  Would you have said something differently or did I handle it well enough?

:JAX:

2 comments:

  1. Wow, we seriously need to begin teaching women's history.

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    Replies
    1. You know, I honestly couldn't agree more. I have been asking why we don't for years now.

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