Where do its consequences begin and end?
By Rachel Connolly
Oct 6, 2022
There is a leaflet I remember reading compulsively when I was in primary school. I would have been 8 or 9 years old and got it from one of the booths set up by anti-choice protesters who would often gather in town. The text was neon pink and printed on silky black paper, design choices that made the content seem sensational, even pornographic. Across one corner there was an image of a tiny human body blurred by a glowing outline. The religious imagery I grew up with was full of saints portrayed similarly.
That leaflet lived in my pocket for a while. I unfolded and refolded it until the shininess faded and it was quartered with thick, white veins. I only vaguely remember what it said, the usual gory myths about infertility and vacuums and the capacity a fetus has to feel pain, always using the word baby instead of fetus. The feelings it evoked I recall much more clearly: revulsion, shock, and fascination.