Barrett: Carly Fiorina's pro-life stance on abortion contradicts feminist ideals

In the Oct. 8 issue of The Lamron, the editorial “Despite Planned Parenthood Stance, Fiorina Still a Feminist” said, “Some may question how [Republican presidential candidate Carly Fiorina] could truly be a feminist without being pro-choice.”

This is a great question because Fiorina is not a feminist. She is not a feminist because she is not pro-choice. Pro-choice does not mean pro-abortion; as any feminist will agree; someone does not have to morally approve of abortion or want to get an abortion to be pro-choice. Someone must be pro-choice, however, to be a feminist. Feminists must recognize that every individual female should have a choice when it comes to their bodily autonomy.

Without a doubt, access to abortion affects gender equality. First, it affects how we view female bodies. It is important to recognize that every pregnancy is inherently risky for even healthy females, so any pregnant individual should have the choice to terminate the potentially life-threatening pregnancy if they do not want to risk their life for another person.

By denying the right to choose, you’re also denying bodily autonomy—this principle states that a person has the right to decide who uses their body for what, for how long and when. A fetus—even if considered a person—is using the mother’s body. The mother has the right to terminate the fetus under bodily autonomy.

Being a mother drastically changes an individual’s career as well. A study at Cornell University sent out identical resumes with male and female names, only adding or removing a line about parent-teacher association involvement to indicate children.

The research showed that mothers were half as likely to be called back as childless women and were offered $13,000 less in starting salary than fathers. Men were more likely to get a call back and were found to earn 6 percent more on average for being a father. We cannot say that abortion has nothing to do with gender equality when the very essence of being a woman with children stacks the economic and cultural cards against you.

Fiorina can talk a big game about helping women in the “struggle to break the glass ceiling,” as the editorial said, but Fiorina’s stance on abortion directly contradicts that.

Fiorina’s forced pregnancy principles will disproportionately affect people of color, impoverished individuals, lesbian households and transgender individuals. No one can claim that Fiorina is the kind of intersectional feminist that characterizes the current feminist movement.

Fiorina isn’t really against the act of killing fetuses—she’s against females. The editorial said that Fiorina “does believe that abortion is acceptable in the cases of incest … and rape.” If Fiorina actually believed fetuses were equivalent to born children, she wouldn’t allow for exceptions in these cases.

Fiorina certainly wouldn’t allow an individual to “kill” their born child that was conceived in rape. She views fetuses like born children—a fetus should be no different. To me, this reveals the sinister underbelly of the anti-feminist arguments of pro-lifers—they use the guise of being “pro-life” to push a profoundly contradictory but fundamentally anti-female agenda.

Fiorina, your misogyny is showing.