Former University of Wisconsin student Nedra Bobo spoke on her personal experiences with abortion and Christianity Wednesday night in an event entitled “One Woman’s Story,” sponsored by the Catholic Student Union.
Bobo recalled decisions made in her youth and reflected on her newfound beliefs.
During her college years in Madison, Bobo said she became pregnant and had two abortions at local clinics.
“Don’t get pregnant. When you’re pregnant, your body is no longer yours,” Bobo said.
After her second abortion, Bobo said she quickly forgot the physical signs of pregnancy and felt “free as a bird.” However, within months she began to hate her surroundings and looked to the Catholic religion for solace.
“I have found my heart to be planted in Christianity; it is the road I’ve chosen to take,” Bobo said.
Because of her religious beliefs, Bobo advised women to avoid abortion at all costs.
“When I got an abortion, I threw everything away,” she said.
In case of an unplanned pregnancy, Bobo encouraged Madison women to seek local resources, such as the abortion alternatives offered by CareNet, Helpline, and Wisconsin Right to Life.
Abortion is an issue affecting millions of American women. According to the National Abortion Federation, each year more than 50 percent of all pregnancies among American women are unintended. About half of these unplanned pregnancies, 1.5 million, are ended by abortion.
If the current rate of abortion continues, it is estimated that nearly half of all women of reproductive age in America today will have an abortion by age 45.
In the 1973 Supreme Court case Roe v. Wade, the Supreme Court ruled that the Fourteenth Amendment granted women protection of privacy and the right to have abortions. Since this decision, abortion has been a controversial issue, often divided along lines of religious belief.
Bobo said she wondered how the law could support a morally corrupt action.
“How could something legal be wrong?” Bobo said.
On the UW campus, many students are pro-choice. Kris Anderson, a human development and family studies major, said she disagrees with Bobo’s viewpoint.
“The life of a fetus may be debated — a life of a woman may not,” Anderson said. “Abortion shouldn’t be taken lightly. It is not a good form of birth control, but it is an effective safety net.”
Elizabeth Staudt, publicity coordinator at the Campus Women’s Center, said the pro-choice viewpoint promotes a woman’s right to make a decision, which does not necessarily lead to abortion.
“It should be remembered that pro-choice is not pro-abortion. Many pieces of pro-life literature, however, give people such a message,” Staudt said.