Dr. Phil corrected an abortion activist on his show Wednesday, saying pro-life advocates are not just “pro-birth” and pointing to organizations that support mothers and babies in need.
The talk show host welcomed several abortion proponents and pro-life leaders to debate the topic this fall. The show that aired Wednesday was the second of a two-part episode that included Lila Rose of Live Action, Jess Meeth of Democrats for Life of America, Susan Swift of The Right to Life League and Louisiana state Sen. Katrina Jackson, a pro-life Democrat.
During one segment, attorney Ben Crump, a leftist trial lawyer who is representing a woman in a Louisiana abortion case, criticized pro-life advocates for not caring about “the lives that are already here.”
“I would have more respect if you were advocating for them, the lives that are already here who are innocently being killed,” Crump said, referring to the number of African American men on death row who have been wrongfully convicted.
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However, Dr. Phil quickly corrected Crump, saying he does not want pro-life advocates to be mischaracterized as “pro-birth.” The host pointed to the work of Live Action, which educates, supports and connects families in need to resources both before and after their babies are born.
“Let me tell you Live Action is very proactive about helping these children once they are born …” Dr. Phil said. “It’s not like, ‘I want to push this baby into the world and then disappear.’”
Rose, the president and founder of Live Action, thanked Dr. Phil for responding because the mischaracterization has become prevalent in the mainstream media. She said the pro-life community does everything from providing financial and job placement resources to fostering and adopting children.
“The pro-life solution is seeing the value of the mother and the child,” Rose said.
Swift said The Right to Life League is supporting California families in much the same way, telling Dr. Phil, “We’re about the whole child and the mother.”
Jess Meeth, communications director for Democrats for Life, said providing better support for pregnant and parenting families is one area where people on both sides of the abortion debate should be able to agree. Also worth noting, contrary to Crump’s claims, her organization and some other pro-life groups also oppose the death penalty.
Meeth said the debate needs to focus on women and children in minority and under-served communities – those most affected by abortion. She cited a Guttmacher Institute study that found 75 percent of women seek abortions due to economic hardship.
“That is harrowing and that should awaken all of us,” she said.
Speaking about her work at another pro-life non-profit, Meeth continued: “These women felt like they didn’t have an option. They felt like due to their circumstances they couldn’t keep their baby. They would tell me, ‘I don’t feel like I have a choice.’ So, we would help them pay their rent, their groceries, their utilities, their transportation during and after pregnancy. We have to be pro-life for the whole life.”
Pro-life organizations help millions of families every year through pregnancy resource centers and maternity homes, foster and adoption agencies, Christian organizations like Catholic Charities, scholarship funds, counseling centers, churches and more.
According to research by the Charlotte Lozier Institute, pregnancy resource centers alone have helped save more than 800,000 unborn babies from abortion since 2016. The research found U.S. pregnancy resource centers served about 2 million people in 2019, providing more than 730,000 pregnancy tests, nearly half a million ultrasounds, 1.3 million packs of diapers and more than 2 million baby outfits, all for free to families in need.