Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Common Ground on Abortion and Unintended Pregnancies

My regular readers know that the Religious Institute calls for a faith based commitment to reproductive rights and believes that abortion is a moral decision. You also know that I have repeatedly resisted those who claim that they are progressive but advocate for policies to reduce the number of abortions by 90 or 95% without both assuring access to safe and legal abortion services and advocating for sexuality education and family planning to avoid unintended pregnancies.

We've often felt like a lone voice in the religious community on this issue.

So, I want you to go over to the Christian Broadcasting web site and read this article by David Brody, their CBN News Senior Correspondent, on the proposed language on abortion for the Democratic platform. He reports that such evangelical and Catholic leaders as Joel Hunter, Jim Wallis, and Tony Campolo helped create it.

He's surprised that the language includes support for prenatal care, adoption, and parenting, AS IF pro-choice persons haven't always actively supported these issues. I have a 30 year history in the sexual and reproductive rights movement, and I want to remind CBN that such organizations as Planned Parenthood, NFPRHA, and SIECUS (which I headed for 12 years) have always supported options based pregnancy counseling for women with unintended pregnancies, that include having and raising a baby, adoption, and abortion services. The Religious Institute's Open Letter to Religious Leaders on Abortion as a Moral Decision explicitly includes support for intentional parenting and removal of barriers that keep women from having children they desire.

Mr. Brody applauds what he sees as a change in the pro-choice position and that it is likely to reassure evangelical and Catholic leaders. No change, Mr. Brody and CBN, but I'm glad you like it. It's what the pro-choice movement has been about all along.

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