Forbes ran a short article this week on privacy concerns related to billboards protesting abortion–one by a group trying to raise awareness about abortions among people of color, and another by the New Mexico man who wanted an equal say in a woman’s right to choose.
I’ll look at the issue of abortion targeting racial groups in a future post, but today’s question relates to men.
I am not endorsing this man’s billboard tactic, nor the man himself, about whom I know nothing. Vengeful public anger is never an acceptable way to gain credibility for your cause.
But the message of the billboard raises some pressing questions for women and our choice to abort a pregnancy. What do you think? Is a pre-born child also part of “his” body since the baby’s DNA is formed from his raw material as well as the mother’s?
What recourse should men have when abortion laws make them a bystander to their own children’s lives?
There hasn’t been much research done on the impact of abortion on the father. But as I have listened to their stories and interviewed those who help these men I have seen firsthand the great sadness, anger and spiritual pain men experience after abortion. According to research posted on the website Men and Abortion:
“….as many as 60% were troubled by the irrevocable ending of the life they had helped set in motion” (p. 162). Of those men surveyed, 11% stated that they were opposed to their partners’ decision to abort and were described as experiencing a very profound sense of personal loss.”
These statistics point to a hidden groundswell of men who were willing to step up and father their child, but deferred to women who silenced their voice in the choice.
And what of those men who do not wish to parent? The government will force a man to pay if a woman decides she wants to give birth and parent his child, even if he doesn’t wish to do so. His income will no longer remain private–and rightly so. But this lopsided granting of rights to women over the interests of men and children is based on the premise that pregnancy takes place in her body so she alone decides. Isn’t every child conceived from the body (the seed, the DNA) of a man? Doesn’t that mean his body is also involved? And what about the body of the baby?
By framing this complicated situation as a women’s issue and granting women a private right to treat human life as her own exclusive property, we have violated the natural law in ways that harm men and children irreparably. Women cannot help but be harmed as well. And men cannot be silent forever.
No individual woman deserves to lose her privacy as it appears has happened in New Mexico with this billboard; libel and slander are not protected speech. But if we as women will ever recover from the pain of abortion and the destruction of so many relationships in its wake, we have to begin to acknowledge in the privacy of our own hearts the harm it does to everyone involved.
Yes, even the men.
What do you think?