“The Pro-Life Movement Cares about Births, not Babies.”
If you have been following the events surrounding the leaked Roe v Wade opinion, you have likely heard this statement:
“Those in the Pro-Life movement care more about birth than they do babies. If they really cared about babies, or about life, they would do more to support government welfare programs.”
There are several variations, but I’m sure you have heard something close. The absurdity would be laughable if it weren’t so sad! Somehow, the argument that protecting the lives of the unborn is less compassionate than ending them, continues! But then, I guess, you would have to admit that the unborn are indeed alive.
Worldview Frames Our Conclusions
The abortion debate is a debate of worldview. It’s a debate often had despite the facts and not because of them. Arguments are made based on one’s view of the world and their place in it.
A few examples:
When does life begin? This is not a scientific debate because science pushes the beginning of life to the other side of when most states allow abortion. If we followed the science, we would be arguing over when in the first trimester life begins instead of whether late-term abortions should be legal.
The role of government and welfare programs. Since most people who oppose abortion are politically conservative, the assumption from its advocates is that they are also against government welfare programs. This, is the heart of the “they only care about birth” argument. Again, this comes down to worldview. If one believes that the government, and not those in the community, are responsible for the care of the orphaned, abused, hungry and homeless, then the conclusion is that only tax dollars can fix the problems of those in need.
Individual autonomy can be separated from individual responsibility. Again, conservatives traditionally believe that autonomy and responsibility go hand in hand. One cannot be an autonomous or free individual, it has long been held, unless he is also responsible for his actions. Modern liberal philosophy takes a different approach. Autonomy, modern liberals proclaim, means that one can do whatever they want with little in the way of negative consequences for their actions.
We must be very careful when considering the issue of abortion to understand that it is a philosophical or worldview issue more than it is anything else.
Facts Can Be Hard to Deal With
This is where the “conservatives don’t really care” argument breaks down. For those who are interested, a few facts from the Barna study (www.barna.com) entitled, “5 Things You Need to Know About Adoption”:
Christians are more than twice as likely as the general population to adopt a child.
3 percent of Christians while only 2 percent of all adults have fostered a child.
American adoptions comprise nearly half of all adoptions worldwide.
But what about giving? In the Panel Study of Income Dynamics data analyzed by the Center on Wealth and Philanthropy at Boston College (www.bc.edu/bc-web/centers/center-on-wealth-and-philanthropy), the following was found:
Persons who attend religious services twice a month or more give over four times as much as persons who never attend services.
Three quarters of Americans who volunteer belong to a religious organization.
31 percent of Republicans shared at least $1,000 with charity, verses 17 percent among Democrats, and 20 percent among Independents.
Conservative households have 6% less income than Liberal households but give 30% more to charity.
Admittedly some of this data is a few years old, but the numbers have held very consistent over time, and it stands to reason that they would continue to hold as we become more polarized nationally. It is also understood that when dealing with groups of people there are many in the group that don’t represent the whole. The point of sharing this data is simple: the argument made by many who are pro-abortion that the pro-life community does not care for the unwanted after they are born is factually false.
This Only Matters to Those Who Care About Life
Most of us on the “Pro-life” side of this debate have settled the issue of when life begins. If there is a disagreement, it is within a matter of weeks, not months, and definitely does not extend outside of the womb. We hold to the position that it is our job to defend those who cannot defend themselves and that the most vulnerable in the “can’t defend themselves” category are the unborn. Unfortunately, when accusations like, “they do nothing to care for the living” are thrown our way, we can be silenced by what those who will kill a baby tell us we are not doing! And this is their goal! They don’t care about the facts. They only care about keeping those who advocate for life from speaking up.
And so, we must understand the truth even when the truth cannot be used to persuade those on the other side. Truth is what gives us strength and courage when the very forces of hell do everything possible to keep us from standing up for those who cannot stand up for themselves.
Know the truth and share it boldly. Find solutions where there may be problems. Celebrate Life!