I almost feel sorry for those who support abortion these days.
It’s become more difficult for them to convince a sophisticated audience, one that is increasingly made up of young people, that they have a coherent message.
It used to be that you could just say “It’s my body, my choice, my future” and the rest of the world would break out into the Hallelujah chorus. Those who struck a discordant note by saying ‘baby’ instead of ‘fetus’ were shouted down.
Not anymore. Now, when you say you are pro-choice, people actually force you to consider what it is you are ‘choosing.’ They might not actually come out and show you pictures of terminated pregnancies (a/k/a aborted fetuses) and they might not tell you that a fertilized embryo contains all of the necessary DNA that defines a separate human being. They might not direct you to the website of CHOP where you can read about life-saving surgeries performed on babies in-utero, and they probably wouldn’t mention Kermit Gosnell and his gruesome crew.
Pro-Lifers have gotten better manners since the old, Operation Rescue days.
Still, any time a woman says that it’s a matter of life and death when abortion rights are restricted, there will now be at least one person in her listening audience who says: whose life, and which death?
It didn’t happen overnight. In those first, heady years after Roe v. Wade was announced, the pro-choice movement (which had no problem calling itself the pro-abortion movement as far back as 1975) was giddy with victory. Feminists had finally achieved their crowning victory: reducing women to the sum total of their ovaries. Of course, that’s not how they saw it. Quite the opposite. The ladies of Now and Naral and Planned Parenthood (more on them later) thought they were freeing us up for better things than ‘just’ motherhood. They taught us all to think in terms of possibilities, of fragile glass ceilings and equality. By disengaging us from what they saw as a biological mandate to reproduce, they convinced us we’d “Come a Long Way (Without) Baby!”
Ironically, though, in trying to move us away from that life-giving function that defined us even as we attempted to reject its centrality to our lives, we became enslaved to a new description of self: the one where women are only valuable to the extent that they can control their ovaries.
Funny, huh? After spending so much time trying to prove that we weren’t just the sum total of our lady parts, the pro-choice movement became fixated on exactly those parts.
If someone tried to limit abortion in any way, shape or form, the Choice Cabal rose up in anger. Spousal notification? Ridiculous, since fathers were an afterthought (except when it came to paying support.) Parental notification? Abusive, since Mom and Dad were less relevant than Judge Judy to a teen in crisis. Stricter licensing laws for clinics? Just another way for the state to put the abortion industry out of business.
And my favorite: don’t ever make a woman wait 24 hours before the procedure since she might actually change her mind and keep the baby. Can’t have that happening.
All of this focus on allowing women to treat their wombs like the gas tank to a hybrid vehicle (fill her up only when absolutely necessary) began to take its toll on the national conscience.
Today, more young people describe themselves as anti-abortion than ever before. While a small majority of Americans still believe abortion should be legal in limited circumstances, Planned Parenthood has seen its popularity plummet, even as it desperately positioned itself to repel that War on Women waged by the evil Pro-Lifers. That’s a good thing, since an organization that was based on the same eugenics theory as the one employed by Jozef Mengele doesn’t deserve accolades.
Of course, there are still going to be those who sense the change in the winds and try desperately to keep the abortion boat afloat. Recently, my good friend Rich Zeoli from Talk Radio WPHT sent me a link to this fellow named Toure who said-out loud, and completely sober-that abortion had ‘saved’ his life. How did taking another life save his own? Well, this Toure fellow was in a relationship with a woman who happened to get pregnant. Daddy-to-be didn’t think he was ready to have a baby, so he and the short-term mama got rid of the nuisance. In not-so-proud Papa’s words, “I thank God and country that when I fell into a bad situation, abortion was there to save me and keep me on a path toward building a strong family I have now.”
He “fell into a bad situation.” That’s an interesting image, and anatomically challenging I’m sure. It’s also clever of him to invoke God even though I’m fairly certain no deity, whether we call him Yaweh, Our Father or Allah would look kindly on murder as birth control.
War on Women. Abortion as a lifesaver. The desperate cries of someone slipping into the quicksand of history.
As I was saying, I almost feel sorry.