‘My body, my choice’ – except when it isn’t - André Picard
2023-09-18 from theglobeandmail.com
Gender-affirming surgery, vaccine refusal, medical assistance in dying, abortion, involuntary treatment for drug users.
All these hot-button medical/political issues are, at their core, about one thing: Bodily autonomy.
It’s one of the most fundamental human rights. In many ways, bodily autonomy is the foundation on which other rights are built.
But is it absolute?
Can our ability to do as we wish with our body – cut off parts of it, terminate a pregnancy, poison ourselves with drugs, refuse to poison ourselves with other drugs, end our lives – be restricted? If so, why? How? In what circumstances?
The debate over the limits of bodily autonomy has persisted for centuries, perhaps millennia, but has become highly partisan and supercharged of late.
It has also become more perplexing.
The embrace of individualism and the rallying cries for “freedom” seem to be rising in tandem with the explosion of moralistic restrictions on exercising choice.
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