Don’t Erase Women, Don’t Erase Moms, Don’t Erase Children
Wednesday, the New York Times published an article pointing out that the word “women” is conspicuously missing — “vanishing” from the abortion debate. Author Michael Powell referenced a recent ACLU tweet that read, “Abortion bans disproportionately harm: Black, Indigenous & other people of color; the LGBTQ community; immigrants; young people; those working to make ends meet; people with disabilities. Protecting abortion access is an urgent matter of racial and economic justice.”
This tweet, Powell contended, left out a relevant demographic: women.
It should be noted that the ACLU’s entire tweet lacks any basis in reality, as abortion disproportionately kills unborn people of color, very young people, those living in poverty, and those with disabilities.
Given the tweet’s faulty reasoning, pro-lifers can assume that the ACLU did not leave women off the list because they recognize protections for the unborn do not in fact “disproportionately harm” women. No, the omission of the word “women” was deliberately intended to deny truth in an appeal to the far-Left.
In recent years, Americans have seen the elimination of women gain major traction from pro-abortionists. In their guide “Talking about Abortion,” Planned Parenthood of Tennessee and North Mississippi advises, “Use gender neutral and inclusive language because trans and non-binary people also experience pregnancy and need abortion care. Try replacing “women/she/her” with “people,” “pregnant person,” or “they/them/their/theirs.”
In his 2022 budget proposal, President Biden replaced “mothers” with “birthing people.” And perhaps most famously, while speaking to the House Committee on Oversight and Reform, Congresswoman Cori Bush (D-Mo.) inadvertently provided a powerful pro-life testimony, and then, proceeded to refer to moms as “birthing people.”
In the past few months, however, some have recognized that efforts to gain broad support for the idea that anyone other than a woman could be a mother have fallen flat; and so, pro-abortionists have backtracked.
NARAL’s most recent messaging guide on talking about abortion states, “we found that solely using person” (or people”) in place of “woman” (or “women” ) can be confusing…For many, it can create real barriers to understanding and support — especially among older audiences, including older women. The majority of Base and Conflicted people simply do not yet understand enough about gender identity, sexuality, or even basic reproductive processes to enable them to understand why transgender men or people who are nonbinary would need to access abortion care. There is still a tremendous amount of education that needs to happen.”
In other words, the donor base isn’t woke enough to accept the lie that a man could give birth to a child.
Others have noticed this, too. Though it is challenging to tell if it was a gaffe or not, following the leak of the Dobbs decision, President Biden referred to abortion as a “woman’s” fundamental right. Even Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.), who previously co-introduced the Black Maternal Health Momnibus Act of 2021 — which ironically was littered with “birthing people” language — messaged on women.
It seems the far-Left is moving away from the elimination of the term “women” because they realize it is a step too far and could bring their house of cards to the ground. But this certainly is not the first time the pro-abortion industry has used disingenuous wording to erase a person.
The pro-abortion industry has always peddled the lie that abortion is about “privacy,” “choice,” and “bodily autonomy.” These lies deny the reality that the conversation surrounding abortion always involves the lives of two distinct people who exist in relationship with one another — a mother and her child.
Let us pray that as members of the pro-abortion industry begin to realize the need to acknowledge the truth that only women can be pregnant, they will also recognize the truth that every pregnant woman is a mother carrying within her a child who is a beautiful gift from God deserving of the right to life.
Mary Szoch is the Director of the Center for Human Dignity at Family Research Council.