New Zealand’s prime minister, Jacinda Ardern, continues to prove that women are extremely capable of being successful, dedicated, working mothers. Having a baby hasn’t appeared to slow Ardern down, who returned to work after six weeks of maternity leave. Her partner, Clarke Gayford, takes care of their daughter while Ardern fulfills the duties of her position. He and baby Neve frequently travel with Ardern, as she is breastfeeding their daughter. The most recent trip was a 17-hour flight to New York from New Zealand, so that Ardern could speak at the United Nations General Assembly — an event that baby Neve attended, making history.
The Guardian reported on the significance of this event, and the significance of Ardern’s example as a working mother:
Ardern outlined the exceptional circumstances that make it possible for her to raise Neve while continuing as prime minister, which she has frequently stated she hopes will one day be the norm for all women wanting to balance a career and parenting.
“If I can do one thing, and that is change the way we think about these things, then I will be pleased we have achieved something.”
Arden may be sincere in her desire to “change the way” society thinks about children through her own life example, but unfortunately, her political push to make abortion on demand the norm in New Zealand does absolutely nothing to make life better for mothers who want to succeed in education or the workplace while still choosing to become mothers.
The more available abortion becomes, the more frequently it is viewed as the “solution” to any possible dilemma a working woman may face when she becomes pregnant. For example, pregnancy discrimination is clearly illegal in the United States, yet it is extremely common for pregnant and parenting women to be passed over for promotions, to be suddenly fired for no other apparent reason upon becoming pregnant, and so on. Women can go to college, but if they become pregnant while in school, they can expect to be offered an abortion pill… but they’re not likely to find help or options on campus if they choose life for their babies. Many women have said they either felt pressure to abort or were directly coerced into having an abortion. The availability of abortion on demand only makes this more of a likelihood for women.
The Guardian says Arden “gave her first speech in New York at Unicef’s social good summit, restating her commitment to ending child poverty and making her country the best place in the world to be a child.” A country that allows abortion on demand doesn’t make things better or safer for children, especially not for those who exist but are yet in the womb.
Ardern is to be commended for showing that with proper support, women can be successful working mothers. But her abortion policies don’t actually support women. It is when women feel they cannot parent due to fear and a lack of support that they turn to aborting their own children.