Tuesday, May 19, 2009

May 19: Abortion Debate Needs Substance

By Sylvia Gurinsky

If his speech at Notre Dame didn't do it, whoever President Barack Obama nominates to replace Justice David Souter on the Supreme Court will definitely turn up the volume on the debate over abortion - again.

At the same time, a majority of a group polled by Gallup identifies itself as "pro-life," and the entertainment world shows timidity in tackling the issue of abortion.

Seems like it's time to throw some substance into the issue.

Those who say they're pro-life generally follow that with: Babies should be adopted if they're unwanted.

That doesn't always turn out to be the case, however. While there's been an increase in the number of parents willing to take babies who are multiracial, with health problems or affected by a mother's illness or chemical addiction, the vast majority of parents still want a cute, cuddly and healthy baby who looks like them. Celebrities don't adopt those unwanted children, either. (When are we going to hear about Brangelina or Madonna adopting an American "crack baby," or one with Down Syndrome?)

We know what that means for the social services system. And we know who pays for it: All of us.

That issue is now as important as a woman's privacy is in the abortion debate. Maybe more important.

Obama put out a nugget in his speech on Sunday when he talked about reducing the number of unintended pregnancies. He and our other elected leaders must talk more about what happens in many cases when those pregnancies take place - and what the consequences are.

The abortion debate should not be one of good versus evil. It should be one of what is in the best interests of American women, the men who are affected - and the children.

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