Anarchists and the right to choose

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  • user warning: Table 'cache_views_data' is marked as crashed and should be repaired query: UPDATE cache_views_data SET data = 'a:3:{s:6:\"result\";a:2:{i:0;O:8:\"stdClass\":5:{s:3:\"nid\";s:4:\"7594\";s:10:\"node_title\";s:51:\"Irish Anarchist Review no7 - Spring 2013 - with PDF\";s:21:\"node_revisions_teaser\";s:2373:\"<p><img alt=\"\" src=\"/sites/default/files/IA%26Cover280px.jpg\" style=\"border-bottom: 1px solid; border-left: 1px solid; margin: 3px; width: 280px; float: right; height: 412px; border-top: 1px solid; border-right: 1px solid\" />Welcome to issue seven of the Irish Anarchist Review, published by the Workers Solidarity Movement. One hundred years on from the great Dublin lockout, the labour movement in Ireland stands at a crossroads. In this issue, we look at some of the struggles of the past that lead us to this moment in history and consider ways that we can progress the reconstruction of working class organisation. We don&rsquo;t think there is a magic formula for success; rather we hope this magazine can be a forum for debate for activists who are involved in the struggles that are going on in 2013.</p>\r\n<p><strong><a href=\"/sites/default/files/IAR7.pdf\">PDF file of IAR 7 to download</a>&nbsp;(<a href=\"http://www.scribd.com/doc/176585507/Irish-Anarchist-Review-7\">Print Quality version on Scribd</a>)</strong></p>\r\n<ul>\r\n <li>\r\n <strong><a href=\"http://www.wsm.ie/c/1913-lockout-dublin-larkinism-myths\">Locked Out: Dublin 1913</a></strong></li>\r\n <li>\r\n <a href=\"http://www.wsm.ie/c/general-strike-protest-process-solidarity\"><strong>General Strike - Protest or Process</strong></a></li>\r\n <li>\r\n <a href=\"http://www.wsm.ie/c/squatting-politics-dublin-housing-action-committee\"><strong>Urban Politics &amp; The Dublin Housing Action Committee 1968-71</strong></a></li>\r\n <li>\r\n <a href=\"http://www.wsm.ie/c/brazilian-anarchism-interview-world-cup-especifismo\"><strong>Anarchism in Brazil</strong></a></li>\r\n <li>\r\n <a href=\"http://www.wsm.ie/c/capital-left-analysis-debt-graeber-marxism\"><strong>Capital&#39;s Shadow</strong></a></li>\r\n <li>\r\n <a href=\"http://www.wsm.ie/c/rag-interview-revolutionary-anarcha-feminist-group-mar2013\"><strong>On the RAG</strong></a></li>\r\n <li>\r\n <strong><a href=\"http://www.wsm.ie/c/anarchism-intersecionality-gender-race-class\">The Politics of Voices: Notes on Gender, Race &amp; Class</a></strong></li>\r\n <li>\r\n <strong><a href=\"http://www.wsm.ie/c/anarchism-burn-out-self-care-support-activism\">Avoiding Burn out &ndash; Self Care and Support in activism</a></strong></li>\r\n <li>\r\n <strong><a href=\"http://www.wsm.ie/c/review-volume-2-anarchist-faq-iar\">Review of Volume 2 of Anarchist FAQ</a></strong></li>\r\n</ul>\r\n\";s:21:\"node_revisions_format\";s:1:\"2\";s:7:\"_random\";s:19:\"0.04007408585406289\";}i:1;O:8:\"stdClass\":5:{s:3:\"nid\";s:4:\"8119\";s:10:\"node_title\";s:60:\"Solidarity Times leaflet for August 29th Water Charges march\";s:21:\"node_revisions_teaser\";s:1254:\"<p><img alt=\"\" src=\"/sites/default/files/SolidarityTimesCover.jpg\" style=\"width: 350px; height: 494px; margin: 3px; float: right;\" />We are the crisis of Irish Water! We do not want to have our water commodified, metered, and privatised. We know why this is happening &ndash; to increase the wealth and privilege of a global financial capitalist class and their political servants in the EU and Ireland.</p>\r\n<p>We refuse to bow to them. We have gotten up before dawn to stop water meter installation on our streets. We have organised meetings in our communities. We have marched in our thousands and in our hundreds of thousands, shouting &ldquo;Enough!&rdquo; and &ldquo;No way, we won&rsquo;t pay!&rdquo; and &ldquo;Shove your meters up your arse!&rdquo; We are not just angry, we are determined.&nbsp;</p>\r\n<p>We have forced this government into climb-downs and concessions, and we will do the same to the next one. We have decided to boycott Irish Water. We are encouraging our friends, co-workers and neighbours to do the same. Our community of communities is strong and growing stronger. We will keep on growing. When we break Irish Water, we will clear the rubble and grow real solidarity, real co-operation and real community in its place.</p>\r\n\";s:21:\"node_revisions_format\";s:1:\"2\";s:7:\"_random\";s:20:\"0.040637277104554025\";}}s:10:\"total_rows\";i:73;s:5:\"pager\";a:5:{s:9:\"use_pager\";s:1:\"0\";s:14:\"items_per_page\";i:2;s:7:\"element\";i:0;s:6:\"offset\";i:1;s:12:\"current_page\";i:0;}}', created = 1565235433, expire = 1565235733, headers = '', serialized = 1 WHERE cid = 'Random_PDF:block_1:results:d701b49486a84d4cd29efe1b1fbdd8e3' in /var/www/public/includes/cache.inc on line 112.
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We envisage an anarchist society as a society where people are free to make choices about their own lives. We picture a society where decisions are made at the lowest effective level. For women, this includes the decision whether or not to become pregnant, whether or not to remain pregnant, whether or not to have children.

It is possible to be an anarchist and to have a moral objection to abortion. It is not possible to be an anarchist and not support the right to choose. For if the right to choose does not rest solely with pregnant women, where would it lie; with the state, with lawyers and the courts, with police?

The logic of the anti-choice position is that women would be coerced into continuing with unwanted pregnancies. To anarchists this would be unacceptable. Women consider many different issues when they make the decision to have an abortion. They consider the views of their partner, parents and of the society they live in. They consider the effect it will have on their career or studies. They think about whether they are ready for motherhood. They look at the relationship they are in. They examine their financial and economic situation.

The decision is complex and not an easy one. For anarchists, the best person, indeed the only person, with the right to make that decision, is the woman who is going to have to live with its consequences. So for us, the right to abortion is a basic human right.

For many women abortion isn't a choice rather it is the only option in their circumstances. The right to choose should also include the right to choose to become a mother. While we fight for abortion rights on one hand, we fight for the removal of barriers and stigma, which prevent some women from carrying through a pregnancy, which they would like to continue with.

Our fight for abortion rights therefore is also part of a wider struggle to re-define what sort of lives women are able to lead. It is also part of a struggle for a society that supports parents in their decision to have children. In defending and defining the right to choose in the broadest way possible, we are defending the right to make choices about how to live our lives. In doing this we are setting the agenda for a future society.


This page is from the print version of the Irish Anarchist paper 'Workers Solidarity'.


This edition is No61 published in November 2000

Download the PDF file of this issue

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