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2013: Pro-life work continues

Abortion

Last week, pro-lifers on the internet were buzzing about the Jan. 14 Time magazine cover, which features an image of an abortionist’s table and the words: “40 years ago, abortion-rights activists won an epic victory with Roe v. Wade. They’ve been losing ever since.”

The cover delighted pro-lifers like myself. Even to imagine that we’re making headway is encouraging. Planned Parenthood performed 333,964 abortions in 2011 and received $542 million from working Americans in the form of grants, contracts, and Medicaid. Thanks to the work of pro-lifers like Lila Rose, whose undercover videos shot inside Planned Parenthood facilities exposed what really goes on behind the scenes, we now have the defund-Planned Parenthood movement. Some states have passed laws requiring abortionists to show ultrasounds of unborn babies to women before the procedure.

Because the Time cover story is behind a pay wall (and I’m not a subscriber), I haven’t read it. But I have read a recently published story in The New York Times titled “Pregnancy centers gain influence in anti-abortion arena.” An excerpt:

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“Pregnancy centers, while not new, now number about 2,500, compared with about 1,800 abortion providers. [Jeanneane] Maxon [vice president for external affairs at Americans United for Life] estimated that the centers see about a million clients annually, with another million attending abstinence and other programs. Abortion rights advocates have long called some of their approaches deceptive or manipulative. Medical and other experts say some dispense scientifically flawed information, exaggerating abortion’s risks.”

We’re supposed to imagine nefarious anti-abortion nuts somehow tricking women into not killing their unborn children. I assume the so-called deceptive or manipulative approaches include linking abortion to an increased risk of breast cancer and warning women of the long-term psychological effects of killing their offspring for convenience.

Despite the pro-abortion slant of the Times story, it’s as even-handed as it’s going to get from a leftist news source. The core information is there for women seeking abortions. At pregnancy centers, women get counseling, and more important, they get the other side of the story: Unborn life is precious, and there is an alternative to snuffing it out. If the women don’t want to raise the babies themselves, there is adoption. The Christian pregnancy centers likely do more than save babies’ lives and help women avoid something they will regret in the years to come—they lead the unrepentant to Christ.

And I love the label “anti-abortion.” The pro-abortion movement uses it to imply that we’re narrow-minded, women-hating, contrary bigots trying to infringe on their right to kill babies. But I embrace the label. I am not “pro-choice.” I am pro-life. I am anti-abortion and believe even babies conceived in rape or incest should live.

I hope 2013 brings even more victories in the pro-life movement. Its winners aren’t politicians or voters or pregnancy centers or pro-life lobbyists. The victors are the tiny and vulnerable children God placed inside the womb. Those babies cannot defend themselves. The spoil of the victory is life, in all its wonder, and its joy and heartache, pain and pleasure.

La Shawn Barber
La Shawn Barber

La Shawn writes about culture, faith, and politics. Her work has appeared in the Christian Research Journal, Christianity Today, the Washington Examiner, and other publications

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