May 20, 2009
To ask Americans whether or not they are for/against abortion (and to gauge the answers as truly indicative of a culture of life) is NOT helpful.
Americans are an optimistic, hope-filled people. We are, in some ways, a "culture of life." But the better question is: "If I found myself with an 'unwanted'* pregnancy [this question could hold for women and men]--what would I DO?" But this, too, is a hypothetical question. The real question is "What DO Americans DO?"--not what do they SAY they BELIEVE. Allegedly, U.S. abortions went up in January for the first time in a long time.
The "abortion question" is a band-aid question. We need to be asking the diagnostic questions: "What do you believe/do about outside-of-marriage sex?" "What do you believe/do about artificial contraception?" "What do you believe the human person is?" "What do you believe true love is?" "Should love and life ever be separated?" "What happens when they are?"
As Pope Benedict so simply and beautifully put it in regard to AIDS and condoms in Africa: "We need a new way of relating to each other as persons." (Harvard University research shows that condoms DO spread AIDS--the AIDS virus easily passes through the porous condom. This fact has been surpressed for a long time.) Uganda has cut new cases of AIDS by 50% by putting into practice the "beat AIDS by fidelity to your marriage partner" campaign.
*"Unwanted" is relative. Unwanted by ME, not by millions of other people. And ironically, it's MY child that's unwanted by ME, while millions of other people want MY child.