Abortion: Two steps forward, one step back?
May 24, 2005
Neighbors don’t discuss the issue across the fence. Friendly chats over a cup of coffee rarely visit the topic. And while friends will ask what you think about last night’s game or for your commentary on the weather, they don’t generally care to discuss your opinion on this issue. Our society almost always steers clear from the topic as friendships can be won or lost over the issue. What is the scary, social monster in everyone’s closet? The Abortion Issue, an emotional and controversial topic, has become social taboo.
Later this fall, the U.S. Supreme Court will tune in once again to abortion. The debate comes from
New Hampshire where officials dispute the “explicit health exception” in the need for parental notification. The difference of opinion roots in a young girl’s decision for abortion when her life is at risk.
What results from such an exception? Let’s face it, the exclusion provides a loophole that allows minors to have an abortion without parental involvement. Most liberals applaud such a step toward freedom to end life, while conservatives gasp at any movement toward endangerment of an unborn child. While the debate rages on, recent studies show that pro-lifers are gaining ground; their efforts, as promised, are not in vain.
In South Carolina the fight for life seems to take baby steps in the right direction. For instance, just over 12,000 South Carolinian women ended their pregnancies with planned abortions in 2000. That’s nearly the same as natural caused abortions. Overall, planned abortions in South Carolina declined 18% in 2000 from 1996. Pro-lifers see another small victory as abortion providers declined from 14 (1996) to 10 (2000). Over the years, South Carolina has gained a reputation as one of the tightest regulated states for abortion clinics.
Furthermore, abortions for minors in South Carolina may not be provided without parental consent. Parental consent, as I understand it, far passes parental notification. South Carolina also mandates that a counseling session and one hour consideration period be provided prior to the abortion.
So, at times, it seems that advocates for pro-life face an uphill battle. However, in the overall scheme of things, it seems to be two steps forward and one step back. With this slow progress, let’s not forget what Paul told young Timothy, “I am not ashamed, for I know whom I have believed and am persuaded that He is able to keep what I have committed to Him until that Day” (2 Timothy 1:12).