protect the living

it’s taken decades,
no, lifetimes,
for those with wombs to have the government sign off on their right to sovereignty.
as i grew in this world, i couldn’t understand the national, platformed obsession with abortion.
a cyclical obstacle,
a normalized debate,
that distracted from ongoing harm to already birthed humans.

why is there such an emphasis on protecting those who have not yet breathed on their own
when those who are already breathing are left unprotected, violated, and harmed?

now, i could be wrong…but by the looks of it
the politics against the right to choose
tend to be the politics that encourage guns at schools, in cities, in homes.
politics that affirm oppression, division, and systemic inequality.
politics that see houselessness, hunger, and war as separate…as other.

i feel how much i want to make these politics wrong.
other the bodies and minds and hearts that fight so dutifully for them.
i feel my own othering, my own divide,
the way i can personify these beliefs and wrap them up and point at Them
glare at Them with evil eyes and a hardened heart.
but when i get quiet enough,
honest enough,
i encounter a deep, painful confusion.
a yearning to understand better.

why is it that all fetuses are held worthy of a fight
but after they evolve as humans with color and culture and identity
are deemed unworthy of that solidarity?

tell me.
help me understand.
when, in the gestation of a human life, does one get extracted from belonging?
i see the meaning and attempt to save lives,
but so many are being harmed.
what if this organized, life-affirming energy could, instead, be used to save the lives already here?

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