Missouri's 7th District, U.S. House of Representatives




Congressional Issues 2012
How to End Abortion Without Government Coercion

Some Democrats are saying abortion should be "safe, legal and rare." "Safe" means "safe" for the one doing the killing. Killing should not be "rare," it should be non-existent.

But if a woman kills her baby, should the government then kill the mother? Lock her in prison with a car-jacker and a prostitute?

Family Research Council President Ken Connor compared the daily destruction of human life in abortion clinics to the loss of life that occurred in the Sept. 11 attack:

"On September 11th, we were horrified as we watched the destruction of more than 3,000 innocent human lives. In an instant, our government responded to protect the country from further loss," Connor said, in a news release. "But the sad reality of American life is that more than 4,000 children die every day in this country at the hands of abortionists and the government does nothing to intervene."

The central issue in our day is how to prevent 4,000 murdered babies a day, not how to punish 4,000 mothers a day. And the answer to this question is not found in giving the State more power, but reducing the power of the State.

Many who consider themselves pro-life are actually pro-State: they want more power for the government to prosecute those who seek or provide abortions.

Harry Browne writes:

Every day you spend trying to get government to do something about abortion is a day wasted, a day that could have been spent doing something effective – such as working for less-restrictive adoption laws, encouraging private educational efforts to show young women the alternatives to abortion, repealing the income tax so that parents will have the time to teach their children values that will minimize teen-age pregnancies, and repealing laws that shield people from the consequences of their acts.

Every day you spend trying to get government to do something about abortion is a day playing at fighting abortion – showing off for the anti-abortion fans, but achieving nothing. Government will never change people's hearts and minds, but you can change people's minds if you're willing to work at it.

Because I am a libertarian and oppose laws against abortion I have been called an "anarchist." Actually I believe in MORE government than those who support "the government." I believe in self-government.

Andrea Lafferty, of Traditional Values Coalition, meantime, issued a challenge to the Church.

"While many people say they oppose abortion, a lot of people are looking the other way, and the Church is looking the other way," Lafferty said. "The Church needs to be talking about this issue with its young people, with singles' groups, with parents' groups, urging parents to talk to their children about life."

The vast majority of Americans oppose the vast majority of abortions performed in America, according to all polls. This should be the source of social power needed to effectively end abortion without fines or prisons -- or another death.

Here's how self-government works to protect the life of the unborn better than the federal government:

The first big change that needs to take place is to create a separation of school and state. Most parents want their children to be taught to wait for marriage and not to kill or steal. The Government won't allow that kind of teaching. Education must be returned to parental control under a free market. This is where most abortions were always prevented.

Rather than being met at the door by jack-booted gun-wielding federal anti-abortion authorities, mothers contemplating an abortion should be met at the door by voluntary associations of friendly parents who will offer to pay expenses, shelter mothers from abusive "boyfriends," provide caring hospitality, parenting classes, values education and other works of mercy which will help the mothers carry their baby to term and avoid killing a human being.

But even before this need arises, self-government operates to prevent unwanted pregnancies and cultivate a positive value for human life.

Families: Parents who are not victims of government schooling and who have been trained to appreciate America's pro-life values can pass these values on to their children. Constant reminders from the earliest ages that human beings are created by God with unalienable rights is the soil in which homicidal weeds are less likely to grow. Children steeped in pro-life views will inevitably pass these views onto their playmates, and should be encouraged to do so. American parents have always been careful to know who their children play with, and always make an effort to meet the parents of their children's playmates and invite them to learn more about our God-given rights.

Employers should not hesitate to hire single mothers who struggle to make ends meet, and substitute generous pay for government welfare. Lunchtime Bible studies and employee training sessions can pass on America's pro-life values. Personal encouragement increases job performance better than an impersonal workplace, and may result in opportunities for preserving the life of the unborn.

Landlords should use their relationship with tenants to cultivate respect for life through respect for property; the two are not unrelated. Weekend classes in property management, concern for the environment, and household budgeting can be required of tenants in rental agreements. These sessions provide opportunities to stress the importance of human beings created in the Image of God, and their role as stewards of the creation.

Teachers should pass on pro-life values to their students, even in classes that do not directly teach social and cultural subjects. Like the Apostles (Acts 5:29), teachers should defy court orders prohibiting a discussion of American values before and after school, and at lunch.

Media sources which propagate pro-death values should be boycotted. Americans should patronize movies, television, plays, concerts, and other events which transmit American values. Americans should invite neighbors to neighborhood reading circles in which great pro-life books are read and discussed.

Merchants and business owners can join all of the above in a more negative but essential social function: ostracization. Parents can disinherit, landlords can refuse to rent, teachers can expel, media sources can give unfavorable publicity, and merchants can refuse to sell to those who kill children. All of these groups can boycott doctors who kill children. 

Professional organizations such as the AMA and the ABA should penalize members who kill human beings.

If 90% of all abortions are opposed by 90% of Americans, then the lives of these 90% are being controlled by pro-abortion forces who wield the power of "the sword": the 90% have been coerced into silence and inaction. Cultural transformation begins with Liberty and self-government, not the iron fist of the federal government.

It is only because Americans are no longer self-governing that they appeal to "the government" to use armed force against those who seek abortions. 

More ideas: Building a Culture of Life: A Call to Respect Human Dignity in American Life

The following is adapted from The Marriage Meltdown: Gay Unions, Divorce and the Dysfunctional Family

Despite the political firestorm surrounding Roe v. Wade, little has been said about the real issues that are contributing to the dysfunctional American family. The disintegration of traditional marriage and the family, once the glue that kept society together, has set in motion a domino effect that, as it ripples outward, is relegating children to lives of poverty and servitude and destroying the foundations of freedom.

Contrary to what critics might say, homosexual "marriage," while it may be a symptom of a cultural shift away from traditional marriage and all it has historically entailed, is not responsible for the collapse of marriage as a long-revered institution in this country. That blame rests squarely on the shoulders of heterosexuals for whom marriage—and the family unit that arises from it—has become a temporary arrangement at best, with divorce now seen as an immediate cure-all and cohabitation a happy, less permanent, alternative.

Even among professed evangelical Christians who tout traditional marriage, divorce rates are comparable to those of non-Christians. And while the decline in divorce in recent years has been hailed as good news (it now stands at 40%, down from a high of nearly 60% in the 1980s), it is a false positive that is offset by falling marriage rates and surging cohabitations. As researcher George Barna observes, “There no longer seems to be much of a stigma attached to divorce; it is now seen as an unavoidable rite of passage. Interviews with young adults suggest that they want their initial marriage to last, but are not particularly optimistic about that possibility. There is also evidence that many young people are moving toward embracing the idea of serial marriage, in which a person gets married two or three times, seeking a different partner for each phase of their adult life.”

That said, divorce is not solely to blame for the collapse of the institution of marriage. Marriage generally seems to be falling out of favor everywhere except in the realm of reality TV. For the first time in American history, unmarried households now make up the majority of all U.S. households. Younger generations are also more inclined to live together.

Where once the institution of marriage gave legitimacy to sexual relations and children, it no longer serves as much of a gatekeeper. This can largely be attributed to the sexual revolution, which paved the way for sex outside of marriage; the feminist movement, which pushed to legalize abortion, thereby making pregnancy a woman’s “problem” to deal with as she sees fit; and the decreased role of religion in American life. Consequently, nearly 40% of all U.S. children are now born out of wedlock. According to the National Center for Health Statistics, the number of unmarried-couple households with children has risen to more than 1.7 million—up from under 200,000 in 1970. Moreover, there are 9.8 million single mothers versus 1.8 million single fathers.

The ramifications of the breakdown of marriage and the subsequent rise in single-parent households are far-reaching and alarming. For example, children living with a single mother are six times more likely to live in poverty than are children whose parents are married. The same study found that children in stepfamilies and single-parent families are almost three times more likely to drop out of school than children in intact families. And living in a single-parent home can cause a disconnect among children between family and marriage. Moreover, as W. Bradford Wilcox, director of the National Marriage Project at the University of Virginia, notes in “The Evolution of Divorce”:

Since 1974, about 1 million children per year have seen their parents divorce—and children who are exposed to divorce are two to three times more likely than their peers in intact marriages to suffer from serious social or psychological pathologies. In their book Growing Up with a Single Parent: What Hurts, What Helps, sociologists Sara McLanahan and Gary Sandefur found that 31% of adolescents with divorced parents dropped out of high school, compared to 13% of children from intact families. They also concluded that 33% of adolescent girls whose parents divorced became teen mothers, compared to 11% of girls from continuously married families. And McLanahan and her colleagues have found that 11% of boys who come from divorced families end up spending time in prison before the age of 32, compared to 5% of boys who come from intact homes.... Sociologist Paul Amato estimates that if the United States enjoyed the same level of family stability today as it did in 1960, the nation would have 750,000 fewer children repeating grades, 1.2 million fewer school suspensions, approximately 500,000 fewer acts of teenage delinquency, about 600,000 fewer kids receiving therapy, and approximately 70,000 fewer suicides every year.
These statistics tell some painful truths about America at the dawn of the new millennium. They show that our priorities have clearly shifted. Despite the billions we spend on childcare, toys, clothes, private lessons, etc., a concern for our children no longer seems to be a prime factor in how we live our lives. What are the consequences of all this?

First, the loss of the traditional family structure has led to a destabilization in society of “mediating structures”—neighborhoods, families, churches, schools and voluntary associations. When they function as they should, mediating structures limit the growth of the government. But when these structures break down, society—that is, people—look to mega-structures, such as the state, for help. According to Wilcox, the public costs of family breakdown among working-class and poor communities exceed $112 billion a year “as federal, state, and local governments spend more money on police, prisons, welfare, and court costs, trying to pick up the pieces of broken families.”

Second, major religious institutions have virtually little to no moral or spiritual impact on American society—apart from politics, that is. The Christian church is a prime example. Intensely political, many Christian organizations today work feverishly to enact such anti-homosexual measures as homosexual "marriage" amendments while doing little to impact the traditional family positively. Indeed, despite all the money ($40 million and counting), politicking, fundraising and energy that conservative Christian groups put into defeating homosexual "marriage" in California, nothing was accomplished in terms of shoring up the traditional family structure.

Third, the data supports the premise that the decline in the family leads to a decline in our democratic form of government. Indeed, the family—not schools—is where children should learn self-government, basic moral values and the beliefs that determine the future of democratic institutions. Thus, it stands to reason that without stable families, we can have no hope of producing self-reliant, responsible citizens.

Finally, traditional marriage plays a critical role in the structure of free societies by interposing a significant legal entity between the individual and the state. None other than D. H. Lawrence, author of Lady Chatterley’s Lover, once recognized: “The marriage bond is the fundamental connecting link in Christian society. Break it, and you will have to go back to the overwhelming dominance of the State, which existed before the Christian era. The Roman State was all-powerful, the Roman father represented the State, the Roman family was the father’s estate, held more or less in fee for the State itself. Now the question is, do we want to go back, or forward, to any of these forms of State control?”

Lawrence continued:

It is marriage, perhaps, which has given man the best of his freedom, given him his little kingdom of his own within the big kingdom of the State, given him his foothold of independence on which to stand and resist an unjust State. Man and wife, a king and queen with one or two subjects, and a few square yards of territory of their own: this, really, is marriage. It is a true freedom because it is a true fulfillment, for man, woman, and children.
There can be no easy fix for these problems. Certainly, there are no legislative or governmental solutions, and fighting homosexual "marriage" isn’t going to do it. Morality and the decline of the family have become convenient platforms for those on both sides of the political aisle. Having reduced the very real problems plaguing America’s families to soundbites bandied about in the quest for political dominance, today’s politicians, homosexual rights activists and traditional marriage activists are not providing a lasting solution to the marriage meltdown.

The solution, if there is one, is to be found where the problems start: with each man, woman and child taking responsibility for keeping their family together. So let’s forget about politics. Forget about the debates over how to punish mothers who kill their children. Instead, let’s look around at what’s left of our neighborhoods, our communities and our families, and put our children first.

back to: Abortion

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