An article in yesterday’s Chicago Tribune looked at reactions to the passage last week of South Dakota’s ban on virtually all abortions, scheduled to take effect July 1. The reporter, Judy Peres, interviewed one mother in the waiting room of the state’s only abortion clinic in Sioux Falls:
“I can’t believe somebody would step in and try to make that choice for me,” said a 30-year-old woman who was waiting for an abortion Wednesday afternoon. The unemployed Native American, who declined to give her name or hometown, said she and her husband conceived despite using birth control. After long hours of discussion, they agreed to terminate the pregnancy.
“…[S]he and her husband conceived despite using birth control.” When I read that sentence, I had a sudden urge to do this: This reporter obviously didn’t bother to find out that most women who have abortions were using contraception at the time they became pregnant. So-called pro-choice groups repeatedly claim that birth control is the “common ground” in the abortion debate and that pro-lifers should encourage couples to contracept. How about it, pro-lifers: should we? In a word: No. Why not? Because birth control has been pushed on people — especially teens — for two generations, and what results has it produced? Skyrocketing numbers of unplanned pregnancies, abortions, risky sexual behaviors, and STDs. (And while it’s true that there has been a decrease in the teen pregnancy rate in recent years, that’s due primarily to the success of abstinence-only education programs.) It’s time to recognize that birth control is no solution to abortion. It’s part of the problem.