Abortion is Not a “Social Issue,” It is a True Human Rights Issue

Opinion   |   Maria Vitale Gallagher   |   Oct 8, 2013   |   2:27AM   |   Washington, DC

The other night, the film “The Social Network” was playing on television. You may remember that the movie was inspired by the founding of one of the most popular socializing experiments of the Internet age — the social networking site known as Facebook.

That got me thinking about the way the perception of the word “social” has evolved over time. When you talk about getting social to a Millennial, she may instantly think of Instagram, Vine, Twitter, and Facebook. A social issue to her might be how many “likes” her pics got on her page or how many chats she can conduct online at the same time.

But many in the major media seem to be stuck in a ’80s mentality in which a social issue refers to a non-fiscal topic of intense interest to, in their misguided view, a minority of voters. Reporters talk about politicians who are fiscal conservatives but social moderates. Over the years, this has been code for office-seekers who want to rein in government spending but who support legal abortion.

But when I Googled the word “social” recently, the first definition listed by the language experts at Merriam-Webster was “relating to or involving activities in which people spend time talking to each other or doing enjoyable things with each other.”

Abortion is not an enjoyable activity. It is not an event to which you invite your Facebook friends. Women who have undergone abortions and who have come to deeply regret them talk about abortion’s isolating effects. They may hide the traumatic loss of their child from family members, friends — even future husbands. One woman I know said she took on a “life of the party” persona to mask an abortion’s devastating effect on her spirit. Her boisterous laughter became a defense against the pain which seared her soul.

Labeling something as a “social issue” conveys the idea that it has to do with your social life — having fun, enjoying life, being in the company of others in a spirit of friendship.

That is not abortion.

Abortion is the taking of an innocent human life. It is an unnatural event which leaves a mother to grieve a child who can never, ever be replaced. The collateral damage of this tragedy can be felt by fathers, grandmothers, grandfathers, brothers, sisters, aunts, and uncles.

Abortion is not a social issue. It is a human rights issue. Data compiled by the Guttmacher Institute, the former research arm of the abortion giant Planned Parenthood, along with the Centers for Disease Control, indicate that more than 55 million abortions have occurred in the U.S. since Roe v. Wade, the tragic 1973 Supreme Court decision which allowed abortion’s legalization.



Ending this monumental catastrophe is the greatest civil rights issue of these 21st century times. For the sake of all the victims, please do not call it a “social issue.” Doing so only seeks to diminish the significance of their lives, and to trivialize the grief suffered by those left behind.

LifeNews.com Note: Maria Vitale is an opinion columnist for LifeNews.com. She is the Legislative Director for the Pennsylvania Pro-Life Federation and Vitale has written and reported for various broadcast and print media outlets, including National Public Radio, CBS Radio, and AP Radio.