Send a Tweet
Most Popular Choices
Share on Facebook Share on Twitter 1 Printer Friendly Page More Sharing
OpEdNews Op Eds    H2'ed 5/15/12

Abortion Politics

By       (Page 1 of 1 pages)     (# of views)   1 comment
Author 79021
Message William A. Collins
- Advertisement -
You have to hand it to the Catholic bishops. They not only define abortion, but also birth control, as murder. And they're willing to pin the very future of their Church to this arcane belief. Sounds a bit like the Republican Party.
Public reaction to this rather extreme ideology included a full-page ad in The New York Times by the Freedom from Religion Foundation in March. The headline read, "It's Time to Consider Quitting the Catholic Church." It went on to list controversial social issues, including contraception, where the Church seems to have lost its moral footing. Although its opposition to abortion and family planning probably won't foment a landslide away from the Church, the steady erosion of membership is increasing, both here and in Europe.
The irony of the research data is perhaps what makes this issue so mind-boggling. It's no secret that as sex education and access to birth control rise, teen pregnancies, other unwanted pregnancies, and abortion all decline. This isn't, as they say, rocket science. Voters, including Catholics, grasp it perfectly well.
But let us not just beat up on the errant bishops. Different players successfully poisoned the Republican primary debate and routinely threaten Southern and Midwestern abortion clinics. Those roles are largely filled by evangelical Protestants. It's nice to see that mindlessness, a mean spirit, and a fixation on sex can be so non-sectarian.
The state-by-state evidence could also inspire wonder. As the national teen pregnancy rate declines to its lowest level since the mid-1940s, the rate remains high in culturally conservative states like Arkansas, Texas, and Oklahoma.
There's another aspect of the teen pregnancy game: poverty. It's obviously the poor who most need help with reproductive health costs. With all those spending cuts at the state and local levels, their unplanned pregnancy rate has actually gone up.
President Barack Obama isn't immune from this political tar ball either. He may be pro-choice, but in December Kathleen Sebelius, his Health and Human Services secretary, overruled the Food and Drug Administration's decision to let girls under 17 buy an emergency "morning after" contraceptive pill without a prescription. Thus, potentially pregnant 16-year olds will still need a prescription (read, mom or pop's permission) to get that pill -- along with the domestic abuse that too often accompanies such a disclosure.
That was just a little sop to the anti-birth control movement.

 

- Advertisement -

Rate It | View Ratings

William A. Collins Social Media Pages: Facebook page url on login Profile not filled in       Twitter page url on login Profile not filled in       Linkedin page url on login Profile not filled in       Instagram page url on login Profile not filled in

William A. Collins, an OtherWords columnist, is a former Connecticut State lawmaker and the former mayor of Norwalk. He founded Minuteman Media, which later became OtherWords, in 1998.

Go To Commenting
The views expressed herein are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of this website or its editors.
Writers Guidelines
Contact AuthorContact Author Contact EditorContact Editor Author PageView Authors' Articles
Support OpEdNews

OpEdNews depends upon can't survive without your help.

If you value this article and the work of OpEdNews, please either Donate or Purchase a premium membership.

STAY IN THE KNOW
If you've enjoyed this, sign up for our daily or weekly newsletter to get lots of great progressive content.
Daily Weekly     OpEdNews Newsletter
Name
Email
   (Opens new browser window)
 

Most Popular Articles by this Author:     (View All Most Popular Articles by this Author)

Abortion Politics