Pro-life activists have heard plenty of misconceptions about pro-lifers and the movement, that we’re against sex and birth control, and worse, just want to shame abortion-minded women. There are also those who, along with misconceptions, misunderstand the points they advocate for at the same time. This is perhaps no better represented than in a comic from No Scope Comics. Shared on Facebook, within two weeks it has over 80,000 shares.
A bystander, who claims to “want to stop abortion,” has a plan involving the following ideas:
1. To “stop the practice of abstinence-only sex education and generally improve awareness in early teenagers of the real risks of being sexually active.”
Many abstinence programs are already aware of “the real risks of being sexually active,” which is part of the reason they are used in the first place. Calvin Freiburger for Live Action News has also pointed to several sources which show positive results in such programs. And, just over this past summer, researchers found that providing students with free condoms actually increases pregnancy rates.
It’s not clear what sex education programs the comic is advocating for, other than not abstinence, but it’s still worth warning that many programs have a dangerous and failed partnership with Planned Parenthood, which, aside from performing the most abortions in the country, has also been involved in giving minors sexually explicit information under the guise of providing sex education.
2. To “make various forms of contraception available for free to pretty much anyone who asks for it.”
As mentioned above, giving students free condoms doesn’t work. And, as the British Pregnancy Advisory Service (BPAS), which performs the most abortions in the United Kingdom, found out, 66 percent of women who were seeking an abortion had already been using contraception. As the pro-abortion Guttmacher Institute found, 54 percent of women seeking an abortion had also already been using contraception. Abby Johnson, formerly a Planned Parenthood director, turned pro-life activist, has pointed to more studies showing abortions increase as contraception does.
It is unclear which “various forms of contraception” the comic is speaking of, or who will pay for it if it is to be “available for free.” It’s worth wondering if “pretty much anyone” means minors, or if prescriptions will be required for certain kinds, as they are now.
There is also a concern that certain forms of contraception, particularly long-acting reversible contraception (LARCs), may act as abortifacients, or cause harm to women who use them. As Michael New for National Review has mentioned, these forms have a high discontinuance rate.
Pro-lifers are a diverse bunch, though. While there are those who are opposed to many or all forms of contraception, there are those who are not opposed to contraception. While it’s important to know the facts of contraception, it’s also important to not lump all pro-lifers together.
3. “Then I suppose we should put an end to victim blaming during rape cases and at the same time educate young men about the importance of consent.”
What pro-lifer would be against this? Apparently, some people think that those who are pro-abstinence had a part to play with the exploitation of kidnapping and rape victim, Elizabeth Smart, as Freiburger also noted. Pro-lifers do not seek to blame or shame women who have been raped, though there are those in support of abortion who have done that by equating religion and rape.
It is worth noting that it is the system which is against women who have been raped and become pregnant, and bravely choose to parent their children, especially when rapists have parental rights in several states.
4. “Meanwhile we could stop religious lobbyists from restricting medical research so that more illnesses and birth defects can be found and cured in utero.”
So, we’ve found where the comic brings in the mocking of the religious. Except this time it doesn’t even really make sense. If the comic is talking about opposition to embryonic stem cell research, then it’s almost laughable. Embryonic stem cells don’t work. Adult stem cells are found to be much more successful. But how fitting to pit opposition to embryonic stem cells against the babies it claims it could cure.
Not surprisingly, the comic ends with the sign-bearer preferring to “stand outside a clinic waving signs and shouting at vulnerable women until they cry.” At least the comic admits that women seeking abortions are vulnerable and in need to help. Carrying a sign though isn’t the end of the story for many pro-lifers, especially since the movement is constantly seeking more ways to help these women, though we’ve heard this before about ourselves.
Instead, pro-lifers are there to help women and their children, not judge them. Furthering misconceptions as this comic is doing does nothing to help women.