Whenever you hear about a teenaged girl allegedly being forced into an abor­tion, your anten­nae have just got to go up. We’re talk­ing about a con­tro­ver­sial med­ical pro­ce­dure that most peo­ple prob­a­bly don’t under­take elec­tively to begin with — that is, I sus­pect most women hav­ing abor­tions don’t actu­ally want to be hav­ing an abor­tion — so there’s always an ele­ment of whaaaaaaat? when you learn of an appar­ent attempt at a forced procedure.

Katelyn Kampf, The teen in ques­tion here, is actu­ally 19, which makes it even stranger. She was allegedly kid­napped in Maine, the aim being to trans­port her to New York where the pro­ce­dure would be per­formed. How the alleged kid­nap­pers planned to force a legal adult to undergo an abor­tion out of state is a ques­tion for the trial, I suppose.

But the odd­est thing about it?

The alleged kid­nap­pers and would-​​be abor­tion pro­po­nents were the girl’s own par­ents.

After she became preg­nant by a man who is now in jail, her par­ents allegedly resorted to extreme tac­tics: Police say they tied her up with rope, gagged her with duct tape, and put her in the fam­ily Lexus and drove her across state lines, intent on forc­ing her to have an abortion.

This is — at best — weird. The woman appar­ently wants to keep the baby, which is appar­ently fathered by a man who is cur­rently in jail. Okay. She’s of age, she’s liv­ing on her own; yet it seems her par­ents still feel they can enforce their will upon her.

It’s sick enough when right-​​wing loonies want to force all preg­nan­cies to term, even ones due to rape or incest; but it’s just as sick to force an abor­tion on some­one who doesn’t want one.

She always had a really weird rela­tion­ship with her par­ents,” said Ella Stiler-​​Cote, another hon­ors stu­dent from Waynflete who attends col­lege in the Boston area. “She was always run­ning away in high school.”

Gee, I won­der why.

It’s been 86 years since the pas­sage of the 19th Amendment, yet it seems women are still left voice­less by far too many con­trol freaks. It’s bad enough when a woman is treated like chat­tel by a man — but when her own par­ents appar­ently think they have full rights to own­er­ship, what does this say of our social values?

Addendum: Amanda of Pandagon pointed out some­thing I’d man­aged to over­look. Katelyn’s baby’s father is black; Katelyn is white. So we have big­otry in play here, as well as own­er­ship of women — all we need now is NASCAR to fin­ish the right-​​wing loony hat trick.


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