If you broadly share my worldview, I think you should not be able to happily vote for the Greens. I only have one major reason to say this, which is their policy concerning abortion law reform. I realise that many eyes are rolling as people read this. Let me explain why I take a view that so many will find offensive. I understand that this post will upset some people – this is not my aim, and I’m very happy to talk about this in person with any who so wish.
As I understand it (I welcome correction on any of these points), the Greens’ policy decriminalises any and all abortions before 20 weeks’ gestation, removes the freedom of conscience of medical professionals to refuse to refer on to a particular abortion provider, is unclear regarding foetal disabilities (though seems like it will legalise the current practice of being able to abort on the basis of disabilities after the 20th week),
The move is morally problematic for various reasons. One relatively minor issue that might concern some people is that there is nothing in the policy or in the law that would or could prevent sex-selective abortions.
Of course, I will be labelled a right-wing bigot, and various other things, for raising the abortion topic. It’s tiring, but whatevs. Christians will be among those who find this topic uncomfortable; it’s a pity, but some things in life are not comfortable.
The policy is not all bad – each of the following is a good move:
“3c. Provide increased support to vulnerable pregnant women so they feel they can continue with their pregnancy if this is their preferred option.
3d. Ensure women are not penalised financially for choosing to keep their child (see Income Support policy).
3e. Address concerns about pressure for and overuse of antenatal screening, which should be an individual choice, and ensure that parents are fully informed about available and potential supports for families and people living with disabilities. [See our Disability policy].”
But, the shift from saying abortion is something which should be limited to something which should not be is a very serious move that would obviously affect how people act.
Some key principles that guide my thinking:
The law should protect the vulnerable.
The unborn child is particularly vulnerable.
->Therefore the law should protect the unborn child.
The unborn child is an instance of human life.
Human life should not be ended without just cause.
->Therefore the unborn child’s life should not be ended without just cause.
Decriminalising abortion fails to ensure that ending the lives of unborn children only occurs with just cause.
I am unabashedly socially conservative – I think that our society, for all its flaws, is one of the best the world has ever seen and that its broad outlines are worth conserving. Conservatism is not, in my view, a value that can sensibly be abstracted away from social context – so, in most societies I would not be conservative. People who disagree with me would often be labelled ‘progressives’. For my part, I don’t see serious moral regress as progress, and there are parts of the current ‘progressive’ consensus that are regressive, reprobate, and reprehensible. All that said, you don’t need to be socially conservative to agree with me – just to see that unborn children are vulnerable humans deserving at least a mite of legal protection.
I am not part of a grand right-wing conspiracy, and I have nothing much against the fiscal policies of the political left. In the previous two elections I voted for United Future and the Maori Party, and I’m not sure who I’ll vote for this time – I’m pretty sure it won’t be for the Greens.