September 30, 2005

Pro-Life: A Different Perspective

I am a pro-life Catholic. But I take great issue with the Pro-Life movement because I think they chose the wrong approach. Let me explain.

In something like the abortion debate, the so-called pro-life side has dealt exclusively with the supply side of abortion. They have attacked doctors who perform abortions, even murdering some as Jesus would have done, and they have condemned women who have sought abortions, even murdering some as Jesus would have done. Their thinking has exclusively been, "If we can put an end to laws that allow abortions and to people who perform them, we will end abortion."

I think that is terribly naive and--dare I say it?--terribly Republican. They have gone after the supply side of the abortion issue without even considering the demand side. I mean, there wouldn't be any abortions if girls didn't demand them. Isn't it time to look at factors on the demand side? Short of a constitutional amendment banning abortion, and no administration, Republican or Democrat, has seriously pursued that. Abortion is a right. It's not based on a law. It's based on the Constitution.

The only thing at our disposal, short of an amendement, is to attack the demand side. We can make some changes there. We can bolster welfare programs so that another child won't cripple a family, even if that family is African American and poor. We can set up day care centers beyond what we already offer so single mothers can work. We can help every family attain adequate housing. We can provide appropriate sex education and contraception education to kids who need it. We can do a host of things to attack the demand side of abortion, but we don't.

The right-to-life crowd is totally wrong-headed. Why? Because the demand side costs money, and the right-to-life crowd wants less tax, not more.