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Do pro-lifers care about babies after birth?

Do pro-lifers care about babies after birth?

Do pro-lifers care about babies after birth?
July 08
11:49 2017

This past month, Texas Governor Greg Abbott signed HB 3859 into law, a bill to protect child welfare agencies for practicing their religious rights. We are a nation built on religious freedom, but so often the religion people practice becomes an excuse for hatred and discrimination. Such is the case with HB 3859, which allows foster care and adoption agencies to turn away prospective parents that don’t meet their religious requirements.

According to the Kids Count Data Center, Texas has around 30,000 children in foster care, and this number has been steady since 2011. These statistics don’t happen in a vacuum though. One could say the reason the amount of foster children has grown exponentially in Texas is due to Texas’ ridiculously high teen birth rate.

Our state has the fifth highest teen pregnancy rate and the highest repeat teen pregnancy rate, according to the Texas Campaign to Prevent Teen Pregnancy. The Dallas area specifically has a teen pregnancy rate that’s two times the national average, according to NPR, and these statistics don’t necessarily apply to only lower income families. All of these facts about foster children and teen pregnancies are influenced by Texas’ abortion laws, which are some of the strictest in the country.

Texas is generally a “pro-life” state. But what does that really mean? If you ask most pro-lifers, I’m sure they would say something along the lines of being anti-abortion. But being born is such a small part of life in the grand scheme of things. And the question remains: do pro-life supporters care what happens to a baby after it’s born?

Everyone is entitled to their own opinion, just as everyone should be entitled to their own body. It’s perfectly okay to be anti-abortion as long as you don’t force your beliefs on someone else, yet that’s what tends to happen. Texas legislation and many anti-abortion groups don’t just diminish the amount of abortions happening throughout the state, but also the quality of life.

Lawmakers continue to actively defund Planned Parenthood, even though the organization provides a number of necessary services for women of differing economic backgrounds, pregnant or not. Plus, defunding Planned Parenthood doesn’t defund abortions. Those already aren’t paid for with federal money due to the Hyde Amendment. It must also be stated that the government certainly isn’t stopping the rate of teen pregnancies through abstinence-based sexual education either.

The outcome of all this is the 30,000 children left without homes. With the passing of HB 3859, they could stay that way until they turn 18. Human Rights Campaign states that the bill allows agencies to turn away “LGBTQ couples, interfaith couples, single parents [and] married couples,” where one parent has experienced divorce, “or other parents to whom the agency has a religious objection.” It also allows agencies to refuse providing services for any child in need if said services go against the agencies’ religion.

Given this information, it’s clear that this bill was not passed to improve the lives of foster children. What benefit is there to denying a child a home? Anyone who identifies as pro-life should be asking themselves this very question, and support legislation which actively helps every child born from an unwanted pregnancy. There’s a lot of life for them to live after birth, and they deserve support from every pro-lifer.

Featured Image: A newborn baby, only a few days old, crying and still adjusting to life outside of the womb. Evan Amos, Wikimedia Commons.

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Amanda Dycus

Amanda Dycus

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1 Comment

  1. T
    T July 08, 13:08

    Great questions posed. Great article overall. Thanks for putting it out.

    Reply to this comment

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