Though there may be sideline debates secondary to the original cause of the pro-life movement, it is at its heart a single-issue movement against abortion, with members uniting from different backgrounds and beliefs. There are pro-life Christians, Muslims, and Atheists. There is a Pro-Life Alliance of Gays and Lesbians. Pro-lifers are Democrats, Republicans, and Libertarians. They are males and females of all races. As the legalization of assisted suicide began to become a reality, the pro-life movement became known for standing up for the right to life from conception to natural death. But at its core, the pro-life movement is anti-abortion, and this is something we should not shy away from. Being “pro-birth” does not mean that pro-lifers are only “pro-birth” and not beyond (as multiple maternity homes, pregnancy resource centers, and other charities prove). But it does mean that a person is not “pro-life” unless that person opposes abortion.
It’s not about racism
As Black pro-life activist Alyssa McMahon wrote, “both sides of the abortion debate have made a priority of appealing to Black women.” This is because Black women are at a higher risk of undergoing an abortion than women of any other race. The Black abortion rate (abortions per 1,000 women aged 15-44) is currently 3.8 times higher than the white abortion rate and 2.15 times higher than the Hispanic abortion rate.
Abortion advocates claim Black women need abortion more than white women do, that Black women will be more successful and empowered in their education and careers because of abortion. They also claim that abortion saves the lives of Black women because of the high maternal mortality rate Black women face. But no one needs an abortion. What Black women need is quality health care and doctors who listent to them rather than brush off their pregnancy-related concerns. Abortion doesn’t save lives. Black women are dying because of abortion, along with their babies.
Another claim from abortion advocates is that pro-life laws are “a new means of promoting racism and white supremacy.” In truth, it is racism and eugenic thinking that helped launch the birth control and abortion movements — not the pro-life movement. Calling pro-lifers racist is a tactic to both distort the truth and attempt to discredit the movement.
“While there are racist facets of the abortion movement in America, the core evil of abortion is not that it disproportionally targets Black women and babies,” wrote McMahon.
“We need to be mindful that even if abortion did not decimate the Black population, abortion is still a vicious, colorblind evil that props up other corruptions like adultery, human trafficking, incest, rape, and other sexually deviant behaviors among all racial communities. Abortion has a gross negative output in society, regardless of race, and ought to be abolished.”
It’s not about being for or against every possible related issue
Abortion advocates and even some pro-lifers claim that in order to truly be “pro-life,” pro-lifers must agree to also be pro-government health care, anti-death penalty, and either for or against a myriad of other causes, and to be working equally to end all perceived or real issues affecting humans, including climate change, hunger, and human trafficking. While being pro-life is about being more than merely “pro-birth” — with pro-lifers already offering facilities, services, and assistance well after a child’s birth — the pro-life movement cannot and should not be about everything as, for example, the whole life movement is.
“The whole life movement is not a rival of the pro-life movement. Instead, it seeks to purify the pro-life movement of its inconsistencies,” said Robert Christian, who is a proponent of the whole life movement. “A pro-life movement that ignores infant mortality rates, starvation, or the degradation of the environment simply does not deserve the label ‘pro-life.’ It becomes a mere euphemism for supporting laws that restrict access to abortion. It becomes detached from the understanding of human dignity and worth that should animate the movement. Only a whole life approach can make the pro-life movement authentically pro-life.”
While the whole life movement has good intentions, it is broad when it comes to the issues it wishes to solve. The pro-life movement, on the other hand, exists to protect humans — mainly preborn babies — from intentional killing by medical providers done under the guise of health care. This is mainly abortion and euthanasia or assisted suicide. Again, the pro-life movement was created to be anti-abortion, and this is not a bad thing, nor is it somehow inconsistent for a movement to target specific issues. The American Cancer Society was created to fight cancer and not diabetes, and no one condemns them for “not being ‘whole-health'” or “not being anti-diabetes,” for example. No one attacks organizations against human trafficking for not working to end homelessness and hunger as well.< Individuals in the pro-life movement frequently support and donate to other causes and organizations that are attached to other advocacy campaigns about other issues. Some of these issues may be linked to abortion; however, being pro-life primarily means fighting against abortion. There are hundreds of horrors in this world that must be overcome, but to expect the pro-life movement — the one created primarily to stand against abortion — to focus its efforts on every injustice or every related injustice would make each of those goals unachievable.
We must divide and conquer. We must have movements and organizations dedicated to specialized, particular causes or risk failing at them all.
Being pro-life means to fight for the very first right of all human beings: the right to life of the child in the womb. It is about ending the deliberate and inhumane killing of these innocent human beings before birth — an act that takes place more than 2,300 times every day in America alone.
It’s about humanity
For those attempting to save the lives of children at risk of being aborted, it does not matter what the race of the woman or child is. Her bank account doesn’t matter. Her job, her religion, and her age do not matter. Her marital status does not matter. It only matters that an innocent child is at risk of death and her mother is at risk of physical and emotional abortion trauma.
Ending abortion is about valuing humanity. It is about ending the injustice and violence perpetrated against the most vulnerable class of human beings in existence — so vulnerable, in fact, that many ignore and even deny their membership in the human race.
Treating every human being as equal and inherently valuable can never be universally achieved until abortion is ended for good.
Editor’s Note 9/23/2020: Statements were added to clarify the difference betweetn the whole life and pro-life movements.
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