Blogs for Life live

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Today is the 35th anniversary of Roe v. Wade, the Supreme Court decision that overturned restrictions and prohibitions on abortion in all 50 states.

To mark the day, there's a special Blogs for Life event happening at Family Research Council HQ in Washington, overlooking the annual March for Life. Kevin McCullough, who can be heard on BlogTalkRadio and read online at is broadcasting live from Blogs for Life today at 1 p.m. Central Time. The live call-in number is (347) 205-9765.

There are two fronts (at least) in the fight to protect innocent human life in the womb -- the political front and the hearts-and-minds front. We are closer than ever to having a Federal judiciary that recognizes Roe v. Wade and its companion decision Doe v. Bolton as, in Fred Thompson's phrase, "bad law and bad medicine." Sadly, the prospects of progress on the political front in the Federal realm are not looking good right now. (There's still hope of progress on the margins in states like Oklahoma, where pro-life bills have enjoyed broad bipartisan support and newly installed Republican committee chairmen have allowed those bills to progress.)

But if you follow the BatesLine linkblog, you've already seen that there is encouraging news on the hearts-and-minds front. Stephen Chapman's latest column, "The Growing Aversion to Abortion," shows changes in attitudes reflected in public polls and a declining abortion rate:

In 2003, Gallup found, one of every three kids from age 13 to 17 said abortion should be illegal in all circumstances. More revealing yet is that 72 percent said abortion is 'morally wrong.'... The report on abortion rates from the Guttmacher Institute suggests that the evolution of attitudes has transformed behavior. Since 1990, the number of abortions has dropped from 1.61 million to 1.21 million. The abortion rate among women of childbearing age has declined by 29 percent.... In 1990, 30.4 percent of pregnancies ended in abortion. Last year, the figure was 22.4 percent.

Chapman presents one explanation for the shift in opinion:

This growing aversion to abortion may be traced to better information. When the Supreme Court legalized abortion in 1973, most people had little understanding of fetal development. But the proliferation of ultrasound images from the womb, combined with the dissemination of facts by pro-life groups, has lifted the veil. In the new comedy "Juno," a pregnant 16-year-old heads for an abortion clinic, only to change her mind after a teenage protester tells her, "Your baby probably has a beating heart, you know. It can feel pain. And it has fingernails."

"Juno" has been faulted as a "fairy tale" that sugarcoats the realities of teen pregnancy. But if it's a fairy tale, that tells something about how abortion violates our most heartfelt ideals -- and those of our adolescent children. Try to imagine a fairy tale in which the heroine has an abortion and lives happily ever after.

On a partly personal note: One of the speakers at this morning's Blogs for Life session was author Dawn Eden. It was three years ago today that she and I were in Oklahoma City at a blogger bash, a chance for her to meet a number of blogpals she had made here in the state. It was a tough time in her life: Just four days before, she had been fired from her job as a copy editor at the New York Post, mainly because of the ardent pro-life views she expressed on her blog.

As that door closed, many others opened. Since that time, Dawn has published a highly regarded and successful book on chastity for single young adult women and has had the opportunity to speak to groups across the U.S. and overseas. It's exciting to see how God has given her ever-broadening scope to use her gifts to influence and educate on important issues, such as the sanctity of human life, which are dear to her heart. On the acknowledgments page of her book, she mentions the editor who fired her and the reporter who pushed for her firing and cites Genesis 50:20: "But as for you, ye thought evil against me; but God meant it unto good, to bring to pass, as it is this day, to save much people alive."

You'll want to check out her recent entry, Supreme Irony.

MORE: In a lovely "coincidence," the Academy Awards nominations came out today and Juno, notable for its pro-life elements, was nominated for Best Picture, Best Director (for Jason Reitman), Best Actress (Ellen Page), and Original Screenplay (Diablo Cody).

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S. Lee Author Profile Page said:

I can appreciate basing serious decisions on the profound wisdom of 13 to 17 year olds. In fact, all policy about social, foreign, and economic matters should be determined by polls of 13 to 17 year olds. I have a 14 year old son and have yielded all matters of running the household to his wisdom.

As to the efficacy of the abstinance movement, I would point to recent evidence showing that it has failed. Why? Same reason the Don't Smoke compaigns of the 60's and 70's failed: The public was constantantly inundated from all possible media and entertainment sources with images of how normal and pleasurable smoking is. It was not until advocacy of smoking was ruled as not being protected by free speech (or "expression" ... whatever that is), that things began to change. (still got a long way to go).

If pro-life and abstinence people figure out a way to roll back moral behavior to about 1942, then you have my support 100%. For what it's worth, I rarely watch more TV than the occasional episode of Dr. Who. In the mean time, I make note of statistics like "a fatherless male will be about 300 times more likely to resort to crime", and I make note of the recent criminal activity, and I'm thinking that maybe about 15 to 25 years ago, there should have been a few more abortions.

If you're not having much success on effecting a 65 year rollback in social morals (and you're not), and you prefer to compensate by passing out free Prozac and birth control, I'm with you. If you would rather campaign for free tubal ligations at public expense, I can go with that too. But if you insist on clutching your Bible to your breast, and insist that your moral purity and wonderfully good intentions exempts you from pragmatic social considerations, I would appreciate it if you would at least demonstrate your Christian charity towards me and hang a sign outside your house inviting burglars to burgle YOU; and hang a sign on your car inviting thieves to take YOUR car; and wear a sign on your back inviting armed robbers to take YOUR money. That would be the Christian thing to do ... you know ... as long as we are being all ultra Christian and stuff.

And no. I don't think a fertilized egg is a "person".

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This page contains a single entry by Michael Bates published on January 22, 2008 12:20 PM.

Ezra Levant: "What a strange place Canada is" was the previous entry in this blog.

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