Last updated on: 5/16/2014 | Author:

Mary Elizabeth Williams Biography

Staff writer for Salon
Pro to the question "Should Abortion Be Legal?"

“I believe that life starts at conception. And it’s never stopped me from being pro-choice.

…I know that throughout my own pregnancies, I never wavered for a moment in the belief that I was carrying a human life inside of me. I believe that’s what a fetus is: a human life. And that doesn’t make me one iota less solidly pro-choice…

Here’s the complicated reality in which we live: All life is not equal. That’s a difficult thing for liberals like me to talk about, lest we wind up looking like death-panel-loving, kill-your-grandma-and-your-precious-baby storm troopers. Yet a fetus can be a human life without having the same rights as the woman in whose body it resides. She’s the boss. Her life and what is right for her circumstances and her health should automatically trump the rights of the non-autonomous entity inside of her. Always…

…I would put the life of a mother over the life of a fetus every single time — even if I still need to acknowledge my conviction that the fetus is indeed a life. A life worth sacrificing.”

“So What If Abortion Ends Life?,”, Jan. 23, 2013

Involvement and Affiliations:
  • Staff writer, Salon
  • Regular commentator, Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC)
  • Member, National Book Critics Circle
  • Member, Women’s Film Critics Circle
  • Has written for Bust, Cosmopolitan, Fast Company, Nation, New York Observer, New York Times, Parents, Smith, Time Out, New York, TV Guide, Wired, Women’s Health, Working Mother, Yoga Journal, and other publications
  • Appeared on The Today Show, NBC Nightly News, MSNBC, Fox New York, Amampour, Reliable Sources, Talk of the Nation, The Brian Lehrer Show, The Takeaway, and other programs
  • Graduated, Temple University
  • Diagnosed with malignant melanoma on Aug. 11, 2010 and chronicled her experience fighting the disease on
Quoted in:
Pro & Con Quotes: Should Abortion Be Legal?