Where are the pro-life liberals? | Arkansas Blog

Sunday, July 21, 2013

Where are the pro-life liberals?

Posted By on Sun, Jul 21, 2013 at 8:07 AM

THEY MESSED WITH THEM: Protests didnt stop Texas anti-abortion legislation or address concerns about health care for women in general.
  • THEY MESSED WITH THEM: Protests didn't stop Texas anti-abortion legislation or address concerns about health care for women in general.
Ross Douthat, the conservative columnist for the New York Times, writes today that Texas' effort to severely limit abortion availability — Arkansas, too, currently has a 20-week limit thanks to the 2013 legislature — could provide a case study of the effects of severe restrictions.

Will it hamper female mortality, health and economic advancement on a par with some of the most anti-abortion countries around the world? Or will outcomes be more like those in France, Germany, Italy and Ireland, where restrictions of varying degrees are in place (including a virtual ban in Ireland)?

Don't know. And it's a question that goes well beyond my first core disagreement, which is on the question of whether women should have the power to make this decision wherever they live.

But I credit Douthat for this observation in the course of noting that anti-abortion Ireland shows positive results for women in many respects:

Now it’s also true that Ireland, like most of Europe, is to the left of Texas on many economic issues. All the abortion restrictions described above coexist with universal health care, which Rick Perry’s state conspicuously lacks.

So perhaps, it might be argued, abortion can be safely limited only when the government does more to cover women’s costs in other ways — in which case Texas might still be flirting with disaster.

But note that this is a better argument for liberalism than for abortion.

It suggests, for instance, that liberal donors and activists should be spending more time rallying against Perry’s refusal to take federal Medicaid financing than around Wendy Davis’s famous filibuster.

It implies that the quest to “turn Texas blue” should make economic policy rather than late-term abortion its defining issue.

And it raises the possibility that a pro-life liberalism — that once-commonplace, now-mythical persuasion — would actually have a stronger argument to make than the one Texas’s critics are making now.

Texas is famously stingy when it comes to providing support for health care. Arkansas miraculously held its hand out for Obamacare's proffered financial riches, so there's that to suggest we are somewhat different. But I don't see much support within Arkansas's most outspoken anti-abortion lobby for government-supported universal health care or other support for families, particularly including such important preventive measures as birth control pills and other family planning services. Correct me if I'm wrong.

PS — If you'd like to delve a little to deeper in how Texas provides for its women in addition to restricting their abortion rights, this Planned Parenthood release can help.

Tags: , , , , ,

From the ArkTimes store


Comments (25)

Showing 1-25 of 25

Add a comment

Subscribe to this thread:
Showing 1-25 of 25

Add a comment

More by Max Brantley

Readers also liked…

  • Judge anticipates punishment of lawyers in Fort Smith class action case

    Federal Judge P.K. Holmes of Fort Smith issued a 32-page ruling yesterday indicating he contemplates punishment of 16 lawyers who moved a class action lawsuit against an insurance company out of his court to a state court in Polk County after a settlement had been worked out.
    • Apr 15, 2016
  • 'Million-Dollar Thursday': A visit to Sherwood's hot check court

    We take a visit to the weekly hot check court in Sherwood District Court, the subject of a recent civil rights lawsuit filed by ACLU Arkansas and others, who say the system there results in a modern-day debtor's prison
    • Aug 25, 2016
  • IHOP coming down, but .....

    I always scan the Little Rock City Board for items of interest this week and this one caught my eye: A zoning measure required by a proposal to tear down the IHOP at Markham and University.
    • Apr 30, 2016

People who saved…

Most Shared

Most Viewed

Most Recent Comments



© 2017 Arkansas Times | 201 East Markham, Suite 200, Little Rock, AR 72201
Powered by Foundation