We’ve all been there, in conversation with an abortion supporter, showing them as best we can the obvious reality that life begins at the beginning, when it becomes shockingly clear that the facts make no difference. While pro-choice rhetoric has happily softened from ‘abortion-on-demand-no-regrets!’ to ‘abortion as a morally significant event‘, it doesn’t seem to be morally significant in any particular direction. Simply put, many are able to ignore the striking fact of the unborn child. Ultrasound images bounce off their eyes. Embryology textbooks – it seems – evade their grasps. They grow faint and distant at any confrontation over where life begins. Are we to give up on these individuals?
No. The beautiful thing about Truth is that it is a thing overflowing; it applies to more than just the immediate issue. Thus, if we cannot meet these individuals in their avoidance of the child, we can meet them in their stance of care for the woman. Similarly, the terrible thing about Evil is that it is a thing that truly sucks. Abortion is a black hole that pulls in and tears apart not just a human person, but our society, our culture and most importantly, women.
Here then, are three arguments to make in defense of women, and thus against abortion.
1. Abortion increases the risk of breast cancer. This truth, evidenced in prestigious, peer-reviewed cancer-research journals is a very important truth to disseminate. Why? Because the anti-breast-cancer movement – in its walks, marches, fun-runs, pink ribbons, shirts – is one of the most pro-woman movements in existence. Breast cancer is a modern plague on the women of our society, and abortion is augmenting its power. To support women – one assumes – is to be against that one disease that so effects women, to stand strongly against the cancer that has caused such tragedy in the lives of our sisters. To be pro-abortion and simultaneously set against breast cancer is to say that the lack of a child is worth the risk of terminal illness. I don’t claim that this position cannot be maintained – perhaps one could weigh the various costs of feeding a baby versus having chemotherapy treatment. No, I simply claim that this position chips away at the pro-choice foundation, that their’s is a movement in defense of the woman.
2. Abortion makes women sad. I do not mean that in some vague way. A study published in the British Journal of Psychiatry, synthesizing data from 1995 to 2009, shows that “women who had undergone an abortion had an 81% increased risk of mental health problems.”
From the European Journal of Public Health 2005: Researchers examining deaths among the entire population of women in Finland found that those who had abortions had a 3.5 times higher death rate from suicide, accidents, or homicides in the following year. Suicide rates among aborting women were six times higher compared to women who gave birth and two times higher compared to women who miscarried.
Have you ever brought up the issue of abortion, not knowing some one has experienced it? Now there’s a heartbreaking situation, akin to speaking flippantly about the death of a family member to someone who has experienced such a loss. I can only speak from experience: Away flies the tolerant “we all have our beliefs, you your own, and me mine” position. Instead, post-abortion women react violently, shakily, and tearfully, full of anger, or guilt, or both. If abortion makes women sad, which seems to be readily apparent, then once again, the pro-choice movement is placed in the awkward position of claiming to have the health of women as their highest priority, while attempting to increase the availability of that-which-makes-women-sad.
A study that has never been carried out: Suicide rates in mothers who were strongly considering abortion, but chose life. Why not? Probably because it would be a very boring study, with lots of not-depressed mothers being not-depressed.
3. There are other women in existence! And no, I’m not talking about the fact that most children aborted are girls, though it is an interesting question to ask: When, exactly, do women’s rights begin? I’m talking about mothers who want to adopt! A 2008 study by National Center for Health Statistics found that 33.1% of women have at some point considered adoption. Of that number 4.9% were currently seeking adoptions. That’s 901,000 women looking for babies. By most recent statistics, there are approximately 129,000 children seeking adoption. Now I’m no mathematician, but that’s 772,000 women who want to adopt a child, but will not. It seems that if we killed less of our children, this would not be a problem. Shoot, even if we take the women who were currently seeking adoptions AND had already begun taking steps – 560,000 – there aren’t enough children to go around.
Why, oh why, do we put women at risk of cancer, depression, and in the terrifying position of violence against their own children, when there are so many women looking for children to adopt? It seems obvious that between hurting one woman and helping two, the most pro-woman action one could take would be to counsel a woman to consider adoption. The most pro-woman action one might take would be to rapidly reduce abortions in America, and thereby increase adoptions.
Though I understand why there exists the rather insane idea that the better choice for all women would be an abortion: Abortion brings in cash. Who is going to pay for all those Planned Parenthood ‘don’t-defund-us’ campaigns if everyone’s putting their children up for adoption?
So there you have it. Three effective ways to make the pro-life argument to people seemingly unconcerned with the moral question surrounding the unborn child. I plan on bringing up a few more, so if there any you would like discuss, just let me know!