The challenge of parenting today is such that parents do need all the help we can give to support them. Research on Filipino parenting studies focuses on another major topic – that of abusive discipline being practiced by many parents, not only here in our country but globally. Today being All Saints’ Day when we remember our dear departed, I would like to highlight the kind of parenting that rejects becoming one for one reason or another – the millions of innocent unborn babies that have been and continue to be aborted on a global scale! There are a number of memes going around that reflect the absurdity of the reasons and laws that are being made against the unborn. One such is, “If you kill a pre-born sea turtle $100,000 fine, 1 year in prison; If you kill a pre-born bald eagle $250,000 fine, 2 years in prison; If you kill a pre-born human being, no penalty.” The laws vary but they basically allow women whose health is threatened or when the fetus has no chance to survive to abort even after 24 weeks (6 months or more). In this way, abortion has become decriminalized and moved into the reproductive health code and rights. Issues have become focused more on women’s choice and their rights to their bodies, but nothing is said as to the rights of the unborn. There are many arguments back and forth between those who are pro-abortion or say they are pro-choice, and anti-abortion or pro-life which I will not get into, but rather the very sad reality that is simply staggering. The Guttmacher Institute’s 2017 research report, “Abortion Worldwide: Uneven Progress and Unequal Access,” says that an average of 55.9 million abortions occur each year as of 2010-2014! Let us let that sink in! Fifty-five million nine hundred thousand abortions . . . every year!
The World Health Organization reported “some 3 million unsafe abortions among girls aged 15 to 19 take place each year, contributing to maternal deaths and to lasting health problems”. In our country, the DOH and POPCOM have been sounding the alarm on teenage pregnancy with around 196,000 youth aged between 15-19 years old getting pregnant every year. Very much related to teenage pregnancy, but not limited to them, is abortion. Teens with an unplanned and unwanted pregnancy are also most likely to seek abortion, which is illegal in the country but is taking place by the hundreds. In the year 2000 alone, there were 473,000 induced abortions reported based on hospital reports (Guttmacher Institute). This did not count unsafe practices resorted to with untrained “hilots” with questionable sterility procedures or from buying abortion drugs from the stalls surrounding Quiapo church and offered by non-medical persons. In 2008, an estimated 560,000 induced abortion took place, 90,000 sought medical help for complications, and 1,000 died (Center for Reproductive RIghts 2010).
Aside from the millions of valuable human lives nipped in the bud through abortion, there is a dehumanizing effect to it. To justify such act, pro-abortion advocates do not address the preborn as a baby, but rather use tems such as “product of conception”, “clump”, “mass”, “tissue” for the technical terms fetus and embryo. Not only is the preborn dehumanized, there is also untold psychological effect (see PK Coleman’s Abortion and Mental Health: Quantitative Synthesis and Analysis of Research Published 2005-2009; also, DeVeber’s Complications: Abortion’s Impact on Women) and dehumanization of the parents. Mother Teresa put it plainly at the 1994 National prayer Breakfast in Washington D.C. when she said: “By abortion, the mother does not learn to love, but kills even her own child to solve her problems. And, by abortion, that father is told he does not have to take any responsibility at all for the child he has brought into the world. The father is likely to put other women into the same trouble. So abortion just leads to more abortion. Any country that accepts abortion is not teaching its people to love, but to use any violence to get what they want. This is why the greatest destroyer of love and peace is abortion.”
I mourn for the millions of preborn children killed while in their mother’s womb, and abortion’s dehumanizing effect on those involved in it. In our attempt to assert for rights, we justify our actions, but not without consequences. Isaiah 5:20 reminds us “Woe to those who call evil good and good evil, who put darkness for light and light for darkness, who put bitter for sweet and sweet for bitter.” Another meme says it, “There is no sadder sight than women marching for the right to kill their own children and their future generations.”
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