Will Baltimore succumb to culture of death?
The Baltimore City Council has passed a bill requiring crisis pregnancy centers to post signs saying they do not "provide or make referrals for abortion or birth-control services." Now it awaits the mayor's signature.
Behind this unprecedented move of government to step in to regulate these centers is the national "pro-choice" movement -- Planned Parenthood and NARAL. So we can expect similar efforts around the nation.
What's driving it?
First, Planned Parenthood is worried about the cash flow of its abortion mill money machine. Per Abby Johnson, the former Planned Parenthood director who they tried to shut-up with a gag order, "....with the downward economy, they are really trying to increase their abortion numbers, because that is the most lucrative part of their business."
Second, the country is changing. A recent Gallup Poll showed that, for the first time, a majority of Americans -- 51 percent -- are pro-life.
And third, the crisis pregnancy center movement has emerged as enormously successful competition to abortion clinics, providing in-need pregnant women information, support and infrastructure to enable them to keep and give birth to their babies.
These centers came on the scene a little under 40 years ago after the Roe v. Wade decision legalized abortion. Today there are some 5,000 around the country funded by several hundred million dollars in contributions, 80 percent of which is from private individuals.
Baltimore City Council president Stephanie Rawlings-Blake, the lead sponsor of the bill, is transparently carrying Planned Parenthood's water. No equivalent requirement is mandated that abortion clinics post signs saying they offer no pro-life counseling. And, of 50 individuals who testified before the council's hearings, there was not a single client of a pregnancy center who claimed to have been misled.
Rawlings-Blake said her bill is "a step toward making sure that women have information they need to make the right decision for their health and their future."
This would be hilarious if it weren't so sad.
Sitting on my bookshelf is a picture of a beautiful young woman who died on an abortion table.
I carry with me the hundreds of stories of post abortion trauma I've heard at my speaking engagements at centers around the country. Women wracked with guilt. Parents who, when they see their children, recall the aborted brothers and sisters of these children.
Consider Ebony, a former client at Baltimore's Center for Pregnancy Concerns with whom we spoke. Her story reveals who the real deceivers are.
When she became pregnant as a single unmarried woman, her immediate impulse was to abort. She called a local clinic and was able to schedule an abortion with a phone call. When in the conversation she questioned her ability to pay, she was encouraged to proceed because aborting would be "cheaper" than having the child.
Although she remained set on the abortion, Ebony knew something was wrong. Sitting up late at night, she called a Christian radio show to talk. They referred her to a crisis pregnancy center.
There she was told if she did decide to abort, "they would still help her." And then she saw her baby on a sonogram and it was all over. Her son is now almost 4.
Ebony received help with clothes, food and counseling. She struggles today but wouldn't have it any other way.
On the other side, nationwide purveyors of death deceive young women about "choice."
When some 150 years ago Stephen Douglas argued that states should choose whether or not they would have slaves, Abraham Lincoln replied, "God did not place good and evil before man, telling him to make his choice ... he did tell him there was one tree, of the fruit of which he should not eat, upon pain of certain death."
Pro-choice? Who's the deceiver?
-- Parker is president of the Coalition for Urban Renewal and Education. E-mail her at firstname.lastname@example.org.