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Monday, May 28, 2018

Jesuit Thomas Reese on the Irish vote

Irish vote shows need for new pro-life strategy

[...] The American pro-life movement still holds out hope that the U.S. Supreme Court will reverse Roe v. Wade, but even if that does happen, most Americans will still live in states where abortion is legal. Those who don’t will be able to travel to a state where it is, just as Irish women have long traveled to Britain.

The reality is that most Americans think that abortion should be legal even if they think it is immoral. There is no indication that this thinking will change. In fact, opinion is moving in the opposite direction, thanks to the attitudes of younger generations. The Pew Research Center shows Americans under 50 are more likely than their elders to support abortion in all or most cases. Likewise, in Ireland, younger people voted more strongly to change the law. Time is on the side of the pro-choice movement.

If making abortion illegal is an impossible goal, what should be the pro-life strategy for the foreseeable future?

The answer is simple and obvious: work to reduce the number of abortions ....

The contraceptive mandate of the Obama Administration will do more to reduce the number of abortions than all of the legislative gimmicks of Republican legislators. If European Catholic institutions can pay money into national health programs that perform abortions, then American Catholic employers can pay for insurance programs that pay for birth control.

And while I would be happy to see Planned Parenthood put out of business, closing clinics that provide healthcare and birth control to women before replacements are up and running is irresponsible and counterproductive ....

I think Fr. Reese is correct that the logical move is to lessen unwanted pregnancies and right about birth control - t's been shown that the most effective way to reduce abortions is to make cheap/free and efficient birth control available to women.

But the pro-life movement in the US will not support this. Though pro-lifers will give various reasons for why they won't, I believe it comes down to one thing .... the pro-life movement does not care about reducing the number of abortions. What the pro-life movement *does* care about is trying to control women's reproductive lives.

More: Colorado contraception program was a huge success – but the GOP is scrapping it


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