Monday, October 31, 2011

Overheard: Fred Barnes on the pro-choice movement

From his cover article in the Weekly Standard:
Look across the alley from the fifth floor office of the Susan B. Anthony List (SBA) in downtown Washington and you’ll see two placards. They’ve been posted on the window of the office of a labor union in the adjacent building—for the SBA crowd to see. One says “Stop the War on Women,” the other, “Don’t Take Away My Cancer Screenings.”

These are the response of Planned Parenthood and its allies to attacks on what PP and the abortion industry actually do. Abortion? Forget it. (PP says it mostly does medical tests, and abortions are a sideline.) The “A” word is almost never uttered now by anyone connected to the abortion industry, which claims merely to support “a woman’s right to choose.” Choose what? They don’t say. Their opponents aren’t “pro-lifers,” but anyone who is “anti-choice.”

The language gymnastics and euphemisms reflect the forlorn condition of the pro-choice flock. They’re worn out. Many are in despair. Nancy Keenan, president of NARAL Pro-Choice America, told Newsweek of her anguish as she watched last year’s March on Washington. “I just thought, my gosh, they are so young,” she said. “There are so many of them, and they are so young.” Today, zeal and confidence and perseverance in the abortion battle are all on the antiabortion side. “There are more pro-lifers now, and they’re more determined,” says Carol Tobias, president of National Right to Life.

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