[Letters] Curbing teen pregnancy

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[Letters] Curbing teen pregnancy

As a leader of a feminist group, Munwha Meerae If, I often get calls from teenage girls who want to know where they can have abortion surgery. Such calls are now more frequent than before, particularly since the national crackdown of illegal abortion. I wanted to give them a little help, but there was nothing I could do. Other feminist groups seem to feel the same.

Although abortion prices have jumped tenfold, doctors are not willing to perform the surgery. Those who do choose to perform abortion surgery go underground to do it covertly and illegally. Wealthy people would pay for an abortion however pricey the operations are, or they would even go abroad to get one.

What about poor pregnant women? What about pregnant teens? They have no choice but to just give birth to their unwanted child. Teens face much worse situations as they have no financial ability to raise a child. Their unwanted children are obviously an unwelcome burden for them.

Teen mothers inevitably blame their children in tough times. When those children become adults, they will harbor anger and hatred toward society. On the other hand, children who grow up in a loving home will become loving persons.

The government has earmarked 12.1 billion won ($10.9 million) to support single teen mothers, saying that they are entitled to earn an education and have rights as women.

That is pretty reasonable, but the reality is quite different. Even many educated and affluent women who have college diplomas and have decent jobs refuse to have children because they are busy working. Then how can poor and young mothers bear to continue their education while raising children? Poverty will be passed on to the unfortunate children.

The government budget will provide single mothers with 124,000 won per person, per month. That idea seems more like a simple measure to boost the low fertility rate than support for single mothers. An outright ban on abortions would increase the number of single teen mothers who are still immature and have no ability to judge.

From my perspective, a fetus cannot be considered a human being as brain-dead beings are not deemed alive. I consider the future of teen mothers more significant than that of their unborn children.

Insisting on pro-life policies wreaks havoc on the future of our teenagers. Do not even think about persuading them to have unwanted children by giving them a little money.

Would you allow your own daughter to give birth to a baby that she didn’t want, saying that she can still go to school?

Um Eul-sun,

CEO of Munwha Meerae If
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