Congressman Tim Murphy has shocked the United States once again. Murphy urged Shannon Edwards, his denounced mistress since September, to get an abortion despite his strong political stance against abortion. While the Republican Pennsylvania representative’s hypocrisy has astonished many, I am not surprised in the least. A number of men are steadfast in their pro-life stance until it actually impacts their personal life, and Murphy is no exception to this.
Murphy, who is currently serving his eighth term, has been a long time supporter of the pro-life movement, claiming in 2012, “Protecting life is a fundamental core value which I will champion in Congress 100 percent of the time.” Last Tuesday, three text messages between Murphy and Edwards were released which showed Edwards criticizing Murphy on Jan. 25 for a Facebook post that reiterated his anti-abortion position. Her criticism was grounded in the fact that just a week before Murphy had encouraged Edwards to get an abortion. He responded to her accusations the same day, claiming that he understood where she was coming from and grimaced after seeing the post his staff had supposedly created. While it was later revealed that the situation was a pregnancy scare and the pair did not have to make a decision, Murphy’s reaction is telling. Murphy altered his stance on abortion the moment it became a personal matter, but why had he never considered the lives and careers of the men and women who his policy decisions would affect?
Chauvinist male politicians fail to consider the impact their pro-life stances have on society until they suddenly fall victim of the very same struggle. If Edwards had been pregnant, Murphy and Edwards would have made a decision to either terminate the pregnancy or bring a baby into the world, complicating their respective relationships, as well as Murphy’s political career. Why is it acceptable for Murphy to be able to have a choice now, after telling countless women that they do not have that choice? Even after his experience, Murphy voted in favor of the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act, which passed on Tuesday — the same day these messages were released.
Murphy is a hypocrite and deserves all the backlash he is receiving. However, Murphy is not the sole problem, but rather a representation of a problem we have seen in the U.S. for centuries. Men think they know best for women because they are detached from the situation and consequences. When it comes to jeopardizing a woman’s future and career, these men have no problems taking away their voices. However, when the tables turn against them, these men will do everything to keep their reputations untarnished.
Opinions expressed on the editorial pages are not necessarily those of WSN, and our publication of opinions is not an endorsement of them. Email Tyler Crews at [email protected]