When Pro-Life Is Anti-Family
can describe many alleged “pro-life” programs better than
the phrase about the road to hell being paved with good intentions.
How ironic that those concerned about the lives of unborn fetuses could
create programs which in fact act to destroy families, the cornerstone
Take for instance, the state of Florida’s “Choose Life”
license plate fund established by a group of Marion County residents
who wanted to encourage women to choose life over abortion. A benign
enough sounding cause – saving lives - until you look into the
major anti-family strong attached to it:
Funds raised through the sale of the license plates are used to support
pregnant women who plan to continue their pregnancies, based on financial
need, but with a big string attached. Women who do not abort an unplanned
pregnancy, but choose life and desire to raise their own children, are
denied help from the program. The funds can ONLY be given to those who
choose life and relinquish their beloved babies for adoption, usually
by non-related strangers.
words, the state fund is used not to save babies and support mothers
and families in crisis, but to increase the supply of babies available
for a very lucrative adoption industry estimated at $2-3 billion dollars
a year. If the goal were truly to save the life of an unborn from being
aborted, why apply a restrictive condition that creates lifelong grief?
Last year, the seventh year of the program, the plates were the biggest
seller among Florida’s 104 specialty tags, with 41,051 sales –
at $22 each ($19 for renewal). Statewide last year, counties spent nearly
$200,000 less than they took in, and they had three times more money
in reserves than they did in expenditures. The cruel anti-family design
of this program, would rather have money sit unused than use it to help
struggling families who chose not to abort and may need assistance to
Local county deputy human services directors, such as Lee County’s
Ann Arnall is frustrated at the limitations of the legislation while
hundreds of families are flooding her department for emergency help
due to the economic downturn. Seventy percent of Choose Life money can
be spent on material needs of women who “choose” adoption,
such as shelter, medical care, maternity clothes, transportation and
food; the other 30 percent can be spent on adoption “education”
and “awareness” – biased education and awareness that
leads to only one option.
Few women and teens want to willingly relinquish their children; most
seek help instead to be able to parent, but are denied. Many of those
who are convinced ultimately to let their children go, do so –
reluctantly - at the last minute because of lack of alternatives and
the support they need, and are therefore ineligible as well. At Lifeline
Family Center of Cape Coral, for instance, where expectant mothers take
a class about adoption but are offered no parenting classes, most do
not decide until they are in their last month of pregnancy. Adoption
is almost never thought about during the first trimester—the only
time it would be “in competition” with a decision to abort.
1 in 10 of Lifeline residents ever makes an adoption plan, according
to Kathy Miller, president of Lifeline. Miller wishes the money also
could help financially needy women who parent. Instead parenting, as
a choice, is being discriminated against while the state fund has $1.5
million sitting – unused.
accept the funds early on, one has to wonder, are they then obligated,
or made to feel indebted, to go through with an adoption even if they
were to rethink that decision or find new support from the father, their
family or elsewhere? Is that not coercive?
one of the Choose Life founders, said the program was designed for a
purpose: To offer a choice to women who neither wanted to abort nor
parent, but who needed financial assistance; and to educate women and
their counselors about adoption.
Are these women being given education or indoctrination? Note that no
parenting education is offered, despite the fact that parenting is what
the majority of women need despite being caught off guard by a pregnancy.
Many married and single women experience unplanned pregnancies and never
consider either abortion or adoption.
Making support contingent upon one decision over another is a clear
violation of all recognized ethical, objective options counseling and
not in keeping with allowing for an informed choice, and the right to
self-determination as recommended by National Association of Social
Workers and the Child Welfare League of America. In fact, according
to ethical adoption practice, no decision to relinquish parental rights
and allow an adoption of one’s child prior to the birth and time
spent adjusting to the child as a reality. This program immorally an
unethically locks women into a pre-birth contract.
It is sad
that well-meaning intentions of many deeply religious believers are
being used by a larger picture. Pro-lifers are unwittingly pawns for
a religious right agenda that is anti-family and more interested in
punishing “sinful” “unwed” mothers than in saving
unborn lives. Truly caring, giving Christians need to ask themselves
what Jesus would have done? Would he select who is worthy of his help
based on their decision to parent or not? Under these restrictions,
The Virgin Mary, and unmarried teenage expectant mother, would be left
out in the cold manger and offered no assistance, as she chose to raise
her son instead of handing him off to unrelated strangers—possibly
older and wealthier— to raise.
Well-intentioned pro-life supporters are naively unaware of the connection
between the religious right and the multi-billion dollar a year national
adoption industry. Babies are a huge, money-making commodity and the
ties are closely intertwined between the National Council for Adoption—the
largest lobbying organization of adoption agencies, primarily those
of the Later Day Saints—and Evangelical Christians organizations
such as Focus on the Family who held a three-day summit in Colorado
in May, 2007 to promote adoption.
Programs such as this Florida license plate program which offer funds
to expectant mothers allegedly to save the life of their unborn—but
which hold out discriminatory caveats—need to seen for what they
are: a mean-spirited attack on the family and a violation of the separation
of church and state. Religious beliefs are being used to discriminate
against and deconstruct families in need and supply babies for adoption.
This is sinful, immoral and a violation of the constitutional right
Riben is author of “The Stork Market” America’s
Multi-Billion Dollar Unregulated Adoption industry”
Share Your Insights
it! And spread the word!
Here is a unique chance to help this article to be read by thousands
of people more. You just Digg it, and it will appear in the home page
of Digg.com and thousands more will read it. Digg is nothing but an
vote, the article with most votes will go to the top of the page. So,
as you read just give a digg and help thousands more to read this article.