Last week a Concerned Christian left this note on my car. They didn’t leave their name or phone number– just a tract with suggestions about how I can avoid burning in Hell for eternity. Somehow, you never get used to being called, ‘baby killer’. I guess my ‘Obama’ bumper sticker set the anonymous writer off.
Charles Blow, editorial writer for the New York Times takes on the politicians whose concern for children begins at conception and ends at birth…
Of the 33 countries that the International Monetary Fund describes as “advanced economies,” the United States now has the highest infant mortality rate according to data from the World Bank. It took us decades to arrive at this dubious distinction. In 1960, we were 15th. In 1980, we were 13th. And, in 2000, we were 2nd.
Part of the reason for our poor ranking is that declines in our rates stalled after premature births — a leading cause of infant mortality as well as long-term developmental disabilities — began to rise in the 1990s.
Charles Blow goes on to count the cost of disabilities that might be prevented by universal prenatal care and maternal and child health. This is the mission of the March of Dimes, a venerable organization that has advocated for these measures of common sense and common decency for generations.
Caring for the unborn requires caring for the women who will be mothers. It’s perverse and inexplicable that the same politicians who claim to revere unborn life are happy to cut services to pregnant women in order to finance tax cuts for the wealthy. They are even quicker to cut services to mothers, infants and children.
The whole thing reminds me of the guy who brags he has no children, ‘that he knows of’. It’s seduce and abandon.
I know a woman who lives her anti-abortion beliefs by giving substantial and generous help to women and children in need. There are few people ready and willing to do that.
We could, as a society, mandate that all women will have access to reproductive health. We could make maternal-child health a right, and recognize it as a common-sense investment in the future. Instead we are fighting state by state to preserve benefits that are barely adequate.
The common sense and moral appeal of care for mothers and babies is so strong it must be counter-acted by shouts of ‘baby killer’. Loving life is a nice stand to take, especially when you can sneak out the back door when the bills come in. The bills are coming in now, it takes action not words.
Pro woman, pro child, pro choice–it’s not easy, it’s being responsible.