[Today’s piece was co-authored by Secular Pro-Life president Kelsey Hazzard and Americans United for Life senior counsel William Saunders. It originally appeared in LifeNews.]
Abortion advocacy groups refer to themselves as “women’s groups.” They claim that pro-lifers are waging a “war on women.” And the media parrots them at every turn. Under these circumstances, pro-life women can be forgiven for feeling isolated and alone. The abortion movement has worked hard to erase pro-life women’s very existence from the public discourse.
The reality is that abortion advocacy groups only represent the tiny sliver of women and men who want abortion to be legal for any reason and through all nine months of pregnancy. Most American women reject that extreme view.
According to a May 2013 Gallup poll, 57% of women say that abortion should be illegal in all (20%) or all but a few (37%) circumstances. This is very close to men’s views, within the margin of error. In fact, over decades of polling, there has been no substantial evidence to suggest that women gravitate to the pro-abortion position by virtue of their gender. Women think for themselves, and most conclude that preborn babies are living human beings who deserve legal protection.
Sadly, the abortion lobby is once again trying to resurrect the “war on women.” Just this week, Terry O’Neill—president of the “National Organization for Women”—took to Politico to attack the proposed federal ban on abortion after twenty weeks, calling it a “political war on women’s rights.” She also claimed, falsely, that “abortion foes don’t have popular support.” The truth is that strong majorities of Americans of both sexes oppose later-term abortions. Even a majority of self-described pro-choicers believe that abortion should be illegal after the first trimester! But the fact that most women oppose late-term abortions is irrelevant to abortion industry supporters.
Normal American women reject the radical abortion agenda. Unfortunately, many women do not realize that other women agree with them. Indeed, most women are under the mistaken impression that the pro-choice view commands a majority of the public. This only compounds their isolation, and allows the abortion lobby to continue falsely presenting itself as the voice of women’s interests.
But there is hope. Across the nation, women are leading the pro-life movement, and their faces are becoming increasingly impossible to ignore. Some are working in their local communities: writing letters to the editor, mentoring younger pro-life women in their workplaces, and volunteering for pregnancy centers. Others are commanding a national stage as pro-life spokeswomen and elected officials.
In all of these roles, women are excelling—and abortion groups are terrified that they will soon lose their imagined gender monopoly. They should be.