I don’t think the bill stands a chance of becoming law, but Arizona lawmakers are trying to ban abortions based on the race and sex of the fetus.
I have mixed feelings about this. I know what they’re getting at, but barring the mother from killing her baby because he’s mixed race or a boy won’t keep her from killing the baby.
One of the advantages of blogging for almost eight years is archives. No matter what’s going on in the world, chances are I’ve blogged about it or something similar. From May 2010:
Georgia’s Prenatal Nondiscrimination Act
Star Parker wrote a column about the NAACP rescinding support for Georgia’s Prenatal Nondiscrimination Act, which makes it illegal to knowingly solicit, perform, or accept funding for abortions on account of the unborn child’s race or sex, or the mother’s race.
(Also see Ga. bill would outlaw abortion for race, sex)
According to the version of the bill I linked, if a woman pregnant with a mixed race baby (white parent, black parent, for example) decides to kill the baby because he’s mixed race or because he’s a boy, and the abortionist knows this, he’ll be liable under the law for violating the Prenatal Nondiscrimination Act. If she keeps it to herself, he won’t be liable. In the former case, he’s a criminal. In the latter, he’s merely performing his Supreme Court-protected and horrendous job.
Under that scenario, I have mixed feelings. I don’t like injecting race into the abortion debate, because it muddles the issue: protecting the unborn child, regardless of race. Yes, black women kill their babies at three times the rate of white women, but these women are making the choice, are they not? The wrong one, but a choice nonetheless.
I give people the benefit of the doubt. If an individual is doing something harmful to himself or to others, I assume he’s a free moral agent responsible for his actions. I try to avoid attributing actions to “legacy of slavery,” Jim Crow, bad childhood, poverty, low intelligence, undue influence, and the like. Women of any color who kill their babies know exactly what they’re doing.
On the other hand, I know what the legislators are getting at. About 80 percent of Planned Parenthood’s clinics are located in inner cities. (Some argue that its presence among low-income women is necessary, as it offers free and low-cost services). According to Georgia Right to Life:
“Every 4 days in American more black children are killed through abortion than the KKK killed in 144 years. Georgia leads the country in the number of reported abortions performed on black women, 18,901 in 2008 alone.”
Racial disproportionality or disparity isn’t evidence of racial discrimination. I try to drill this concept into people’s skull’s every week. And though I hate abortion with a passion, an abortionist’s or pregnant woman’s possibly discriminatory motives for killing the baby matter little. Skin color, sex, convenience, finances, don’t want to get fat, don’t want to carry baby to term and adopt out for whatever reason–the end result is a dead baby.
I’ve written articles and blog posts about Planned Parenthood founder Margaret Sanger’s views about child killing and racial minorities, so I understand why people inject race into the debate. In fact, I think pro-lifers should remind or inform pro-aborts about Planned Parenthood’s eugenics roots.
But I’m concerned about consistency when alleging racial discrimination. I’d feel like a hypocrite arguing that racial disparities in academic achievement are not evidence of discrimination, but at the same time arguing that racial disparities in abortion are evidence of discrimination. That black women disproportionately abort their babies is not evidence of racial discrimination on the part of abortionists.