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The Student News Site of Fresno Christian High School

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Pro-choice: Abortion assists low-income families

For the opposing view of this issue, visit John Dinsdale’s column, Pro-life: Restrict abortion rights.

There is perhaps no issue as important to Americans and Christians as abortion ? yet no other issue is confronted with such misdirected anger.

To be sure, the urge among religious citizens (particularly Evangelical Protestants) to “protect the unborn” is noble. However, far too many debate and divide into those who hold life sacred and those who do not. To them, there is no middle ground.

Some advocates of fetal rights go even further and say their opponents campaign for more than the right to an abortion ? they are accused of actively promoting it. Reason and accuracy gave way to emotion and exaggeration long ago.

Many battles in these so-called ?culture wars? are fought in the same way. Others, like gay marriage, draw people who, for all their eloquent attempts to define “traditional marriage,” cannot convince most Americans that homosexuality is a major threat. Still others ? such as the controversy over teaching creationism ? are completely pointless.

What separates these issues from abortion is the extent to which pro-life activists will emotionalize every aspect of the debate. Many Christian anti-abortion organizations repeatedly attack the practice with words like ?murder,? and yet support policies that create the perfect conditions for unwanted pregnancies: poverty.

At the beginning of the 20th century, in place of the Christian Right, there was the Social Gospel. Turn-of the-century religious leaders put much less emphasis on topics like ?end times? eschatology and more emphasis on issues pertaining to the here and now.

Many took pride in referring to themselves as progressives or even socialists ? labels now used as epithets by many. Perhaps we as Christians must return to these principles if we are to ever truly alleviate the effects of social strife.

The fact that most women seeking abortions hail from poor backgrounds should make even the most hateful culture warriors pause and think about their objectives. Far from serving those merely inconvenienced by an unwanted child, agencies such as Planned Parenthood primarily serve those with no other choice.

Unfortunately, pro-life advocates tend to believe abortion is a cause ? rather than a symptom ? of social ills. Consequently, many Christians refuse to get to the root of the problem.

Perhaps instead of directing that enormous flow of resources into campaigns that discourage and demonize, churches and organizations taking a hard stance against the practice could actually think of alternatives for low-income women and families.

In the meantime, government cannot take away the right to choose. Abortion must remain an option for the least fortunate in our society.

For more information, read Ryan Swain’s Feb. 24 letter to the editor, Abortion undermines Constitutional privacy policies.

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