NOW Marks 40 Years of Pro-Abortion Activism, Failing Needs of Women
by Steven Ertelt
July 3, 2006
Washington, DC (LifeNews.com) — The National Organization for Women last week marked 40 years as a leading pro-abortion advocacy group. However pro-life advocates say the group has done a poor job in representing the needs of women and polls show its pro-abortion views are out of touch with a majority of American women.
Founded in 1966 by feminist Betty Friedan, NOW was organized in Washington when 28 women gathered at a conference paid $5 each to get the group off the ground. Now it has a few hundred thousand members across the country and numerous state and local chapters.
"NOW has been at the forefront of every major advance for women’s equality for four decades — both making progress and enduring setbacks — and it has been an incredible journey," the group said in a statement about its anniversary.
However, Wendy Wright of Concerned Women for America, a pro-life women’s group that has twice as many members as NOW, says money women regret buying into the pro-abortion group’s rhetoric.
“Unquestionably, NOW has changed America’s culture, through intimidation and misinformation," Wright told LifeNews.com.
"Many women now regret that they bought into NOW’s anti-men, anti-family ideology, and miss the children and the marriages tossed aside in pursuit of ambition," Wright added.
"While many women have found the dogmas of extreme feminism to be not only false but harmful, NOW has refused to relinquish them," she told LifeNews.com.
NOW has come under fire for some outrageous actions over the years.
In March, a Pennsylvania NOW leader was criticized after she complained that a local abortion business in Erie temporarily closed. That happened because abortion partitioner Harvey Brookman had his medical license suspended after he was charged with unprofessional conduct and negligence.
Last October, Jana Mackey, director of the Kansas National Organization for Women, said her group opposed an investigation by Kansas Attorney General Phill Kline into why abortion businesses failed to report the statutory rapes of girls who came to their facilities pregnant.
In 2004, the group became the laughingstock of the nation and was lampooned on political talk shows when it endorsed Carol Moseley-Braun, a pro-abortion former Illinois senator, for president. Moseley-Braun was the only women seeking the Democratic nomination, but she remained at the back of the pack — failing to get on the ballot in some states — and eventually pulled out well before the Iowa and New Hampshire primaries.
Patricia Ireland, former president of NOW, who was ousted as the president of the YWCA, also failed to provide Moseley-Braun’s campaign with enough spark to rise in the polls.
Recent polls of women’s attitudes on abortion find a majority are pro-life.
A June 2003 poll conducted by the pro-abortion Center for the Advancement of Women found 51% of women took a pro-life position opposing most or all abortions while only 30 percent said it should be generally available. It also found abortion on the bottom of a list of issues that concern women.
A September 2003 survey conducted by the Polling Company found 54 percent of women selected one of three different pro-life views opposing all or almost all abortions. Only 39 percent backed abortion.