"Back alleys no more, abortion rights for rich and poor."
This popular chant of abortion proponents expresses a
common theme: Poor women should be afforded equal access to abortion, and
any restrictions of such funding is a direct result of a lack of concern
for the poor members of society. Women are denied a "right," based on
their economic class.
Abortion doesnít eliminate poverty,
however, it merely eliminates the poor.
Poverty is an institution in our country. Itís very
existence is both tolerated and condemned at the same time by abortion
supporters, because instead of solving the real problems of poverty, they
seek to pacify any obligation to the poor by providing them with
abortions. If we argue that an impoverished woman canít afford to have a
child because she does not have adequate housing, food, or clothing,
should we not provide her with these instead? How does an abortion solve
her need for shelter? Obviously, it does not. If we eliminate her need for
abortion, however, we also eliminate the "need" for public funding of
abortion clinics, and the millions of dollars that these clinics receive
because of the poor.
Abortion activists argue that abortion is necessary to
improve the socio-economic status of these women, but its effects do just
the opposite. Thomas Strahan, a researcher with the Association of
Interdisciplinary Research, recently reviewed over 26 studies relating to
abortion's impact on the socio-economic status of women. These studies
show the following:
- - Women who have had abortions are at greater risk
of suffering emotional and psychological problems which may interfere
with their ability to concentrate, make decisions, and interact with
others, thereby reducing their level of job skills and employment
- - Post-abortion women are more likely to engage in
drug and alcohol abuse, often as a means of "numbing" negative
feelings stemming from the abortion. This will in turn effect their
ability to function in the workplace and may inhibit their ability to
enter into meaningful relationships.
- - Women who have had abortions are more likely to
become pregnant again and undergo additional abortions. Nearly 50% of
all abortions are repeat abortions. These repeat abortions do not
represent "satisfied customers." Instead, post-abortion women often
seek replacement pregnancies to make up for the aborted child, but
find themselves faced with the same social pressures which led to the
first abortion. There is also evidence that some women undergo repeat
abortions as an act of "self-punishment" or as attempt to "harden"
themselves to negative feelings stemming from their first abortion.
- - Compared to their peers, teenagers who have had
one abortion are 4 times more likely to have a subsequent abortion.
Almost 20% of teen aborters have a second abortion within a year, and
38% have a second abortion within 5 years.
- - Women who have had abortions are more
likely to subsequently require welfare assistance, and the odds of
going on welfare increase with each subsequent abortion.
- - Women who have repeat abortions tend to have an
increasing number of health problems and greater personality
disintegration, which increases the likelihood of their needing public
- - Post-abortion women have greater difficulty
establishing permanent relationships with a male partner. They are
more likely to never marry, more likely to divorce, and more likely to
go through a long string of "unsuccessful" relationships. This
inability to form a "nuclear family" reduces household income and
increases the probability that the woman and her children will require
- - Women who have had repeat abortions are more
likely to desire children and are likely to carry one or more
subsequent "replacement" pregnancies to term. This means that many
repeat aborters end up becoming unmarried mothers, the very fate they
tried to avoid when they had their first abortion. Only now, they also
have to deal with post-abortion psychological and emotional scars.
As a Church deeply committed to defend both the poor
and the unborn, may we teach our people the connection between the two.
(For more info, visit
www.afterabortion.org. Staff Outreach Assistant Jenn Morson
contributed to this article from the Priests for Life newsletter.)