Last week we learned about things that are proven to not lower the abortion rates in the United States. This week will be a little bit more of a challenge because it will require us to have a conversation about what actually needs to be done to lower the number of unwanted pregnancies end in abortion. This is a controversial conversation, and it is one that many people will disagree with, but it is my hope that it can be a learning experience for everyone and that people can remain open-minded.
It is my opinion that the most influential thing we can do as a country in order to minimize the number of women seeking abortions is to create a society that people want to bring children into. We can do this by providing a culture in which people of every background are respected, protected, and regarded as worthwhile members of society.
All too often, the people who are fighting for the rights of an unborn child are the same people who do not defend the rights of people who are already born. The same political group that calls themselves pro-life supports gun access, war spending, and imposing taxes on the rich while opposing welfare, education spending, food stamps, and rights of minority groups. These situations don't line up. How can a group call themselves pro-life if their fight for life ends as soon as the child is born? Isn't that just pro-birth? What happens in the decades of life after birth? What happens once the baby's born and they're not a middle or upper-class white male? What happens if they need welfare? Or healthcare? Or if their parents make minimum wage? Or if they're at a risk of getting deported? What happens if that child is gay? Or transgender? Who's going to fight for their rights then?
The first thing we need to do as a society to lower abortion rates is to create a society in which people won't want to have abortions. Once that happens, then we can see if it's more effective than oppressing women's rights in order to prevent them from having access to healthcare.