Comparing Abortion to Shopping Is Depraved

It seems people on both sides of the abortion debate can easily agree on one thing: It isn't a trivial matter. Whether you believe a woman has the right to choose abortion or not, most people also understand that it's a serious and intense choice that causes women much turmoil and thought. Which is why the new Kenneth Cole campaign that compares the choice to terminate a pregnancy to the choice of what handbag to buy is angering people on both sides of the debate.

The campaign in question features a woman carrying a Kenneth Cole bag with the question: "Should it be a woman's right to choose if she's the one carrying it?" It's part of an ad campaign designed to stir controversy and debate on topics from abortion to gay marriage to guns and war.

But it's the abortion one that feels the most trivializing and offensive. See the video here.


Abortion isn't a simple choice for almost anyone who makes it. And even when it is, it often comes with complicated emotions and thoughts. The ad demeans women and the complicated process by comparing it to handbag shopping. Of course, Feminists for Choice had a different take. In a blog, one writer said:

I’m of the opinion that any chance to bring abortion into everyday conversation is a good one -- even if the conversation revolves around figuring out why an ad for shoes is talking about abortion. We live in a society that shies away from talking about abortion in movies and on television; we have numerous politicians that are eager to strip funding from Planned Parenthood. If Kenneth Cole can help normalize discussions about abortion rights and their precarious place in our society, then I’m all for it.

Her point is well taken. But people already try to claim that women use abortion as birth control. This only confirms those suspicions. Now they can say, "Look! Women only take this as seriously as buying a purse."

It's not true. No one I know who has ever had an abortion has taken it lightly. And shame on Kenneth Cole for trivializing something so much deeper.

Do you agree with this ad?


Image via Kenneth Cole

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