Well, no I didn’t have an abortion but I could buy a tee-shirt that says I did. Recently Planned Parenthood began marketing a tee-shirt with that cheery slogan and even some of the Planned Parenthood affiliate clinics are not happy with the promotion. I can understand why they are upset. The tee-shirt states what has been latent in the minds of many people on both sides of the abortion debate for quite awhile: pro-choice really means pro-abortion.
According to an August 2 Milwaukee Jounal-Sentinel article by Scott Williams, the designer of the shirt, Jennifer Baumgardner, said the tee-shirt “is a bold statement that having an abortion is a medical procedure for which no apology is needed.”
Are we ready for abortion pride?
I fear, ready or not, such a sentiment is on the rise. Just in time for the tee-shirt was a shocking article in the New York Times by Amy Barrett about abortion-rights advocate Amy Richards who discovered she was pregnant with triplets. Her first pregnancy, she was surprised and feeling ill but more than that she felt three children would be inconvenient. So she decided that she could not bear to have them all. What to do? Engage in subtraction by abortion. The math is simple: three minus two is one.
Sad but true, she consulted a specialist and asked “can we get rid of one or two of them?” Called “selective reduction,” this euphemism means that you can basically eliminate an unwanted fetus even if the baby is healthy. There were identical twins and a boy in the line of fire. She took the boy and the doctor took the twins with a shot of potassium chloride to their beating hearts. Throughout the article, we are solicited to feel sorry for Ms. Richards because she just couldn’t have a pregnancy with triplets. It would be so inconvenient; she wouldn’t be able to work; she would need bed rest; she would have to shop at Costco (she really said that). She was feeling ill and only wanted to eat sour-apple gum. So despite no threat to her safety or health, keeping all three miracles would be out of the question.
I cannot imagine being the father in this case. I would look at a sonogram of three healthy offspring and think now which ones do we sacrifice so mom can work and have no stomach distress. I wonder what would have happened if the remaining child caused mom to have gas or worse, PUPPPS, a rash from hell that often afflicts new moms in the last trimester. According to Ms. Richards, the remaining pregnancy was “seamless” and the little guy survived the womb. We could call him lucky. Or we could call him the last man standing.
I wonder if tee-shirt designer Baumgardner has crafted an abortion-pride tee-shirt in maternity sizes. Ms. Richards could have gotten one as a sign of her pride. Perhaps the maternity version for moms who have “selective reduction” would have the “I Had An Abortion” slogan across the chest and “Survivor on Board” across the tummy.
Not a big market now but wait until abortion pride catches on.
I guess I am naive; I didn’t realize one could legally engage in “selective reduction.” But I shouldn’t be too surprised. Support for such procedures has helped some people get elected to political office. We have a presidential candidate that says he believes that life begins at conception but says he can’t impose that truth on others. That of course would be Senator Kerry whose strength of conviction wilts at the thought of proud pro-abortion voters staying home.
In a society that tolerates the ethics of selective reduction and calls it the right to choose, one should expect that eventually people would not just tolerate callousness but take pride in it.