Abortion

Anti-abortionists reveal their true goal: control of women

Anti-abortionists in the United States have self-revealed that rather than “protecting life”, their real goal is controlling women.

Driving the news

A Supermajority / PerryUndem National Survey published by the New York Times last week polled Americans intending to vote in the 2020 presidential election.

Of the nearly 2,000 citizens surveyed, 33% want abortion illegal in all or most cases.

Those 33% of potential voters put the lie to their own hypocrisy over opposition to abortion being about nothing more than protecting innocent lives.

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Go deeper

Of the voters surveyed hostile to abortion:

  • 77% agree women are too easily offended.
  • 71% agree most women interpret innocent remarks or acts as being sexist.
  • 54% agree men generally make better political leaders than women.
  • 47% want there to be equal numbers of men and women in positions of power in our society.
  • 35% think the way women are treated in society is an important 2020 issue.
  • 34% agree the country would be better off if we had more women in political office.
  • 27% think access to birth control affects women’s equality.
  • 23% think lack of women in political office affects women’s equality.
  • 23% favourable to #MeToo movement.
  • 19% believe systems in society were set up to give men more opportunities than women.
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Why it matters

Though the poll was of US citizens, it’s not a stretch to think the answers would be similar among anti-abortionists in other places.

It’s also not difficult to imagine the answers would be the same among supposedly “pro-life” Catholics.

That’s despite the fact that the Catholic prohibition of abortion dates from only 1869.

In past centuries, the Church allowed abortions in the first few months of pregnancy.

Writing about the survey in The Guardian, author Jill Filipovic insisted opposition to abortion “is not about ‘life'”.

“It’s about the fact that abortion is inexorably tied to women’s freedoms and female power.

“If women can’t decide for themselves when and whether to have children – if having sex can mean being forced into motherhood – women also won’t be able to decide our own futures.

“We know that being forced to continue a pregnancy makes women more likely to remain in poverty. It makes women more likely to remain in abusive relationships. It hurts their children. It makes women more likely to die.

“If you don’t want women to be equal, a great way to force that ideal is to strip women of our rights to our own bodies and reproductive decisions.

“And the goal of abortion opponents is clear: they do not want women to be equal players in society”.

Subordination. Restraint. Poverty. Abuse. Death.

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Is this what the Church ban on abortions has wrought for women?

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Cameron Doody

Director and editor at Novena
PhD in ancient Jewish/Christian history and philosophy. Lecturer in ethics at Loyola University Maryland, Alcalá de Henares (Spain) campus. Religion journalist with 4 years experience.