The issue of abortion has suffered years of neglecting in the Indian Society. The Niketa Mehta case has by attracting intensive media coverage uprooted these dormant matters and forced society to re-evaluate the social, moral, ethical and political associations that surround the issue of abortions. Jayanthi Natarajan encapsulates the above issues by intertwining them with the emotional conflict involved in her article. It is perhaps her position as a contemporary politician and a woman that makes her article so effective.
Her article appropriately titled – “The ironies of modern living” provides an insight on the abortion issue using the Niketa Mehta case as a basis for her arguments. As the title suggests, the article critiques the handling of abortions as old-fashioned and asks for reform in the manner in which the law, society and politicians approach it. The introductory paragraph informs the reader of the circumstances of the Niketa Mehta case providing enough information for the writer to elaborate on later.
The writer describes the case as “straightforward” but indicates that “the issues that arise out of it are far-reaching, and important. ” Here, the writer is fore-shadowing the various dimensions to the case. Her displeasure of the backward legal handlings is suggested with a semi-sarcastic tone attached to the use of the “37-year old law”. The legal complications of the case are discussed later on in the article. “Surely the parents have a right to determine if they should go forward and bring into the world a disabled child or not.
Her opinion is clearly elicited but quickly conflicted by offering an opposing view to the reader. The irony here could be the influence of the uncompromising old laws on the modern circumstances and the court’s repudiation to consider the emotional aspect and individual complications specific to each case. Although, Jayanthi Natarajan commences with addressing abortion as a personal issue, she moves on to its national significance and eventually to presenting the universality of the issue. “The complex emotional conflict and sorrow which engulf her are so raw and painful that it is impossible to describe”.
The intensity of the diction and the usage of phrases such as “agony of worry” and “hostile environment” help fulfill her intentions of conveying the “emotional trauma” and “daily stress” that a family encounters. The effect the disabled child has on the parent’s life is tremendous. She invokes sympathy and understanding for these families and makes an allusion to society as an environment which is “poorly-suited to coping with disabled peers”. This decrying of society as biased and unjust foretells the upheavals the family will face in the future and implicitly condemns the law for the repercussions of its judgment.
She further expresses her disapproval of this personal and traumatic decision evolving into a subject of national debate and public scrutiny. The writer describes this as a violation of individual privacy and freedom by labeling it as “invasive”. From the individuality of each abortion case, she progresses into acknowledging the myriad components of the abortion debate at a global stage. She mentions stages of development and population stability, country-specific historical and cultural contexts, abortion as a fertility control as factors that have played significant roles in this on-going debate.
The writer then condemns this debate as “poorly-informed”. She then scales the magnitude of the problem by mentioning the statistics of illegal abortions in the continent and in the world at large and questions the reasons that drive these couples. The headline of the article introduces the concept of “irony” as a description of the treatment of the issue of abortions and the circumstances. The writer presents this irony on an array of instances. “It is ironical that the moral, social and emotional complexity to abort is not apparent in the public debate.
Her mention of the various different aspects was devoid of the primary factors such as morality and sentimentality. Although she carps this debate, she recognizes the effect it would have on the rights of the citizens of this nation. “To make such as issue the subject of law or national debate is one of the ironies of modern living. ” The reader infers that the writer is implying that modern living is being associated with materialism and less with progressive and modern thinking. The bridge between modern living and modern thinking often has detrimental results on several social-legal cases.
Here she is condemning the impassive nature of society and its inability to be emancipated from the limitations of tradition and orthodoxy. Although it may not be determined as a pivotal element of the article, allusions to the shortcomings of society cannot be ignored. Direct references to the unsuitability of society in dealing with disabled citizens, and “the fact that society finds it awkward and difficult to openly talk about these issues” denotes the complexity of life for such citizens. “.. Further violate the already skewed male-female ratio in our country.
The writer is expressing her concerns “about the perils of too much freedom” and her mistrust in the members of society and their intentions is blatantly observed. She also mentions that national debates are usually accompanied by hysteria and that corruption in politics encourages the employment of these debates as platforms to gain “electoral advantage. ” Her position as a member of parliament enables her to creditably unleash such accusations. She also concluded her article with a reference to abortion being permitted only if it is beneficial to society.
This demonstrates the immense corollary the outcome of the abortion debate could have on the well-being of society, magnifying the need for society to be more progressive and susceptible to change. “The more conservative elements in our society believe that easy access to abortions may encourage promiscuity among the young”; the writer demonstrates her ability to view an issue from all possible points-of-view and augments the sensitivity required to approach this issue coherently. The article is informative yet personal and simple.
This technique allows the writer to supplement the facts with understanding and emotion, enabling the article to attract a larger audience and engrossing the reader. She establishes a connection with the reader by incorporating anecdotes of personal experience. The facts accompanied by the sentimental value heighten the depth of the issue and its repercussions. Her criticism is portrayed subtly, and her ability to explore the various realms this issue encompasses augments her caliber as a writer. She is able to achieve objectivity in her writing and her own opinion, whenever projected is injected implicitly.
Besides informing the audience about abortion in the various realms, the writer demands reform in the legal associations with the issue. She presents a coherent solution and is seen as a staunch believer in individual respect being essential to a productive society. Her beliefs are translated into requests for emotional and personal dilemmas being accounted for in debate and the law. Her requests are positive and are aimed at creating a stable and civilized society which not only respects individuality but makes appropriate use of the rules that form its framework.
The article appears to be well-researched and immaculately structured. The writer’s ability to encompass and merge the innumerable aspects that surround this issue into a comprehensible solution translates into a convincing article. The writer is not only provoking thoughts of legal reform but is also promoting reform in society and its limitations. Personally, I was impressed with the writer’s ability to connect facts to human requisites and force her audience to reconsider their views on the issue and view it more objectively and with greater sensitivity.