When I first started nursing school, abortion was illegal in all 50 states and the American Medical Association (AMA) was influential and widely admired.
But, as cited and influential in the Roe v Wade decision in 1973, the AMA dropped its opposition to abortion in 1970 after a few states legalized abortion with resolutions that stated:
“abortion is a medical procedure that should be performed by a licensed physician in an accredited hospital only after consultation with two other physicians and in conformity with state law, and that no party to the procedure should be required to violate personally held moral principles.”
I remember how upset many doctors were with the AMA after Roe v Wade and many dropped out of the AMA.
Now, there are over one million MDs in the US but less than 25% of practicing doctors are members of the AMA, down from 75% in the 1950s. (This is not just because of abortion but also the politics of the AMA.)
The AMA today now stands firmly for abortion rights and even against common sense conscience rights protection.
“At ‘Crisis Pregnancy Centers,’ Critics say, Ideology Trumps Evidence” is the title of a July 18, 2018, article in the Journal of the American Medical Association by Rita Rubin, MA, excoriating crisis pregnancy centers (CPCs) as “legal but unethical.”
Among the allegedly “unethical” practices the article cites are that CPCs “don’t prescribe or provide birth control” and “dispense misleading information-sometimes mandated by the state-about disproved or exaggerated harms associated with abortion, including increased risk of breast cancer, depression and infertility.” The article also criticizes the free ultrasounds as “medically unnecessary” and “emotional manipulation.”
But, according to the article, the biggest ethical problem seems to be “withholding information” about obtaining abortions.
The article cites California as the first state to pass a crisis pregnancy disclosure law that mandates CPCs to “post or distribute a notice about California’s public programs that provide free or low-cost contraception, prenatal care, and abortion.”(Emphasis added)
The article criticizes the June 26, 2018, U.S. Supreme Court’s National Institute of Family and Life Advocates v. Becerra decision that struck down the California law as likely unconstitutional.
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The JAMA article also decries a recent Health and Human Services’ announcement that Title X family planning services grants includes “natural family planning methods” and that faith-based organizations are eligible to apply for such grants.
The Real facts about Crisis Pregnancy Centers
As even the JAMA article admits, there are more than 3500 CPCs in the US, more than twice the number of US institutions that performed at least 1 abortion in 2014 according to the pro-abortion Guttmacher Institute. That is a decline of 3% between 2011 and 2014.
Obviously, crisis pregnancy centers are seen as threatening to the pro-abortion movement.
As CPC volunteer Patty Knap observed in her blog “The Real Reason Crisis Pregnancy Centers Must Always be Free,” “The difference between an abortion center and a pro-life pregnancy center is like day and night. Or life and death.”
Ms. Knap observes that, unlike an abortion clinic that charges for everything, CPCs don’t charge for anything–including pregnancy tests. Instead, Ms. Knap says, “Every pregnancy center in the country is constantly fundraising.”
Ms. Knap says offering their services without charge is necessary because the trust factor is so important. When their clients understand the motivation of someone who isn’t profiting from the decision they are making, they are more likely to accept the truth and real help.
Just as outrageous as California’s attempt to compel crisis pregnancy centers to advertise abortion is that so many mainstream media outlets continue to ignore or disparage the ongoing efforts of the pro-life movement to offer desperate women a loving opportunity for them and their unborn babies.
We may sometimes wonder if attending fundraising baby showers in our churches, picketing abortion clinics with telephone numbers for help, donating to Birthright, etc. is really accomplishing much. But, as the successes of CPCs show, even the smallest effort by a great number of people can produce the awesome result of helping distressed mothers and saving their babies’ lives.