Frances Kissling, the former president of Catholics for Choice, wrote an opinion piece in Friday’s Washington Post titled, “Abortion rights are under attack, and pro-choice advocates are caught in a time warp.”
Kissling concedes that the pro-abortion movement has steadily lost ground with the American public because they have been unwilling to adapt their arguments to the changes in science and technology which make the unborn child ever more visible. She wrote that the pro-abortion movement must (sort of) think about abortion bans when the baby is viable and also acknowledge that second trimester abortions are different from first, although her explanation why that is so is (to be charitable) incomplete. It also misses that pro-lifers do not pro-rate legal protection.
Kissling’s op-ed was a remarkable specimen of a line of argument some pro-abortion strategists have honed in the last decade: make portentous sounding statements and then qualify them essentially out of existence.
“The fetus is more visible than ever before, and the abortion-rights movement needs to accept its existence and its value,” she writes. “It may not have a right to life, and its value may not be equal to that of the pregnant woman, but ending the life of a fetus is not a morally insignificant event.”
Talk about changing course but not direction.
Why does Kissling even pretend to acknowledge the obvious? Because she must admit that the right-to-life movement is using “increasingly sophisticated arguments” against abortion. This is true, although it leaves the false impression that we started out with weaker or simple arguments.
In reality, pro-life success has been due primarily to our constancy in argument, message, and drive. We have never stopped believing in the humanity and the rights of the unborn.
We have always grounded our arguments in that fact, and we have found tremendous strength in the willingness of our grassroots base to fight tirelessly for this purpose.
Technology, like ultrasound, provides visible proof of what we have been saying for decades: the unborn is like us, only smaller. The inability of the pro-abortion side to grasp this is astounding.
Kissling tells her readers that the pro-abortion movement is trapped in a time warp. A better description is that it is caught in a tailspin.