Cherishing Every Life from Beginning to End
Reasons to Be Pro-Choice?
Recently, NY Times columnist & Catholic Ross Douthat wrote about ‘abortion extremists’ among his liberal friends. Abortion supporters responded in letters to the editor (NYT, 4/15/18). Some of their key points are paraphrased here together with a Catholic response by your editor.
- Pregnancy exacts a heavy price on women in the U.S. Many die in childbirth; if she keeps her baby and is single, she is more likely to be unemployed; giving up a baby for adoption is heart-wrenching; it is better to have the right to abort the baby. Catholic Response: to reduce deaths during childbirth, pregnant women need better health care and services, not the killing of her baby. Single moms do face greater economic hardships. The Catholic Church provides much needed services to help such women including maternity homes, food banks, hospital services and more. And the Church promotes strong marriages through marriage preparation classes. Killing an unborn baby (“terminating a pregnancy”), like any killing, cannot be justified for economic reasons.
- Government ban on abortion has its own real dangers. Catholic Response: The notion that regulating abortion will cause women to seek an illegal “back-alley” procedure is a myth. A 2012 study, e.g., reveals that outlawing abortion in Chile not only saved children, but advanced women’s health. Of course, pro-abortionists ignore the real danger to millions of pre-borns who have been “terminated” legally.
- Pro-choice advocates want to choose reproductive outcomes for themselves & let others choose what they want. Catholic Response: Using misleading terms like “reproductive outcomes” is not helpful. What is really happening is the destruction of a tiny developing human being. The time to choose one’s reproductive outcomes is before one gets pregnant. Abortion destroys a separate living human being.
[The remaining arguments will be covered in the next issue.]
Radical Pro-abortion Culture War Failing
Outgoing Planned Parenthood (PP) President Cecile Richards just published a book detailing her lifetime of pro-choice activism. The book claims pro-abortionists are “transforming the culture” so they can “quit apologizing for abortion.” 3,547,123 is the number of abortions committed at PP since 2006 when Richards became its president. Ten years of public opinion research shows that Americans consistently support significant restrictions on abortion. This year’s Marist poll on abortion found that more than 75% of Americans would limit abortion to — at most — the first three months of pregnancy. A majority of Americans (56%) said they believe abortion is morally wrong. Love is winning! 52% of respondents, and 52% of women, said having an abortion will more likely cause harm to a woman’s life than good. Likewise, 78% said that our laws can protect both the well-being of women and the lives of the unborn rather than choose between them. The poll makes clear that much of what Planned Parenthood advocates falls far out of the mainstream. For example, 63% of Americans support banning abortion after 20 weeks of pregnancy unless the mother’s life is at risk, while just 33% oppose such a ban. Most Americans also oppose the use of taxpayer dollars to pay for elective abortion procedures – another position PP embraces that places them in a minority. In truth, there is a consensus in our culture on abortion: Americans support major rollbacks on abortion. That’s because the pro-life movement is winning hearts and minds on this issue. [March for Life President Jeanne Mancini on Fox News, 4/3/18]