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Karla Martin: Abortion should be legal: One woman’s story

Karla Martin

By Karla Martin

I have heard Christians say that everyone really knows that God exists because we could be aware of him around us, in our mind and in our heart, if we only looked. If this is so, I have never been aware of him. If he exists, he is hateful and has no concern for individuals, especially women.  

What has he done to me? He has aborted my only three pregnancies! Yes, I would blame it on him, if I really believed he existed. He would be the most prolific abortionist that has ever been.

According to Christianity, God made and designed our bodies. Well, if so, he did a very bad job of it and he is to blame for how poorly it works. Over half of fertilized ovum fail to implant and are just washed out of our bodies, as of no concern. Were those fertilized ova really babies? I was two days late and asked for a pregnancy test. When they called me with positive test results, I was already bleeding. There is nothing to point to or see, just some changes to the timing of a woman’s bleeding. God gives these fetuses no special concern, so why should our laws? That was pregnancy number two.

Of those ova that do implant, a high percentage fail to thrive and are dismissed partway through pregnancy. Again, where is God’s concern? On the cusp between my first and second trimester, I lost a pregnancy. I had to fish the fetus out of the toilet. I can assure you, what I saw/handled was nothing like human. It could easily have been the fetus of a frog that students chop up in biology lab. It had been life, all right, but nothing like a human life that our Constitution requires us to respect and preserve. That was pregnancy number one.

With pregnancy number three, at 8½ months, I finally thought we had succeeded — only for God to kill him just before he could be born. He was definitely human by then, so God was a murderer, who refused to wait just a few more days until my baby could be born alive. I was devastated.

Through all this, both my husband and I had really wanted children. We had carefully used contraception when we were first married. Did God hold this against us? We were both in graduate school at the time and had no resources or time to support a family. Once we graduated, that changed and we started trying for a family. I have told our result. I did everything the doctor said to support each pregnancy. We wanted so much to have a family. We were not especially religious, but neither of us actively identified as atheist. I guess God decided that we should be atheist, and pushed me, at least, over the brink. He also killed our marriage.

Most importantly, I will not worship a God who acts as this one supposedly has. He has killed more humans than have been killed by other humans throughout the ages. He cares nothing for abortion (since he is the cause of most), so why should he care about making it illegal? Where is the empathy for the pregnant woman? Why should humans have to care more for fetuses than God does? Why should they care more for fetuses than for the woman risking her life to have the baby?  

I have little respect for those who are anti-abortion and anti-life (at least women’s lives), just as they have no respect for me and my life. They show no empathy or understanding for pregnant women or for the real world.  All they care about is imposing their religious ideas on the rest of us.

Sometimes, I almost wish that I had died at the end of my last pregnancy (as I almost did) and did not have to see how awful so much of the US has become — all because of religion. If I was trying to have children at this time, and not in the 1980s, I would be so fearful. Something in my body that I had no control over, and which doctors did not understand, killed all three fetuses, one after another. Do you think those Christian anti-abortionists would just let it go? Or would they try to hold me responsible, even though I did everything possible to bring each of my pregnancies to a happy end? If I lived in Texas, what are the chances that I would have been brought to court and held responsible for at least one of those abortions?

I am more at peace believing God does not exist. With God, I would dread the distant future — the pain and suffering in hell or the smarmy boredom in heaven. Without God, the world and nature can be satisfying and uplifting while we live, despite griefs that naturally occur. And there is a nothingness that follows once we evaporate in death. That is enough.

Karla Martin is an FFRF member from Washington.