The Patriot Post® · 'Free' Abortion and Too Many Kids
There are a number of benefits to a system of government in which states dictate their own rules, but there are also drawbacks. One significant step backward was taken in Oregon, which severely overreacted to the perceived threat of having the federal spigot to Planned Parenthood turned off by the Trump administration and Republicans in Congress.
Oregon’s House Bill 3391 was introduced back in March as a “direct response” to that possibility and passed by the state legislature on a nearly party-line vote (one Democrat voted against it) as a means of “ensuring access” to what Democrats euphemistically call “reproductive rights.” The bill’s passage last week was touted by Oregon Gov. Kate Brown, a onetime abortion lobbyist herself, as a victory against “attempts to deny access to contraceptives and family planning [that] are an attack on all Oregonians, particularly women of color, low-income and young women.” Brown is expected to gleefully sign the legislation, which takes effect immediately and places the state on the hook for up to $10.1 million for taxpayer-funded abortions over just the next two years.
And that’s on top of what the state already spends, as Bre Payton reminds us at The Federalist. “Currently, Oregon already spends almost $2 million in federal taxpayer funds annually to pay for 3,500 abortions for noncitizens who otherwise don’t qualify for the state’s health-care program. The bill would increase the state’s abortion spending by about 25 percent, and use federal tax dollars to do it because Medicaid is a federally funded program. That means taxpayers all around the country will be funding abortions for Oregonians and noncitizens under this bill.”
As progressives have been reminding us since 1973, abortion is the law of the land. But this “radical and grisly” Oregon bill breaks a lot of ground with respect to the lack of restrictions on who may benefit from the abortion procedure, whether paid for by private insurance or the taxpayer. In essence, Oregon has put a “no questions asked” policy into effect on abortion and forced everyone to pay for it whether they agree or not — even those working for religious organizations. Despite the ongoing efforts of the mainstream media and various celebrities to erase the stigma of abortion, Americans still aren’t buying the idea that it’s morally acceptable. Indeed, the Left’s fealty to “choice” may be a factor in why Democrats haven’t been able to seize the political center in recent decades despite the occasional Republican miscue and the accompanying Leftmedia hysteria.
All this raises a question. We hear day in and day out about one group or another demanding their “right” to engage in some activity, such as the “right” of a person to select a gender du jour or, in this case, exercise their reproductive “right” while having others pay for it. But what about an unborn baby’s right to life in the first place? The Oregon bill, because of its lack of restrictions, is a violation of this most fundamental human right — noted in the first lines of our own Declaration of Independence.
However, the people who refuse to answer this basic philosophical question take things even a step further. “Having children is one of the worst things you can do for the planet,” tweeted leftist author Jill Filipovic. “Have one less and conserve resources.” Filipovic was reacting to a study claiming that having one less child would conserve 58.6 tons of CO2 equivalent per year. (By comparison, living car-free saved a measly 2.4 tons.)
While this prompts the question of whether her parents would consider that proposition on a postpartum basis and whether Jill would volunteer to lead by example, it’s more likely that Filipovic longingly rehashed a century-old bromide begun by Planned Parenthood’s eugenicist founder, Margaret Sanger, and expanded on by biologist Paul Ehrlich: that the planet was rapidly approaching an unsustainable level of population, and that certain groups of people would have to be sacrificed for the good of humanity. Yet we continue to adapt just fine, thank you.
Moreover, Jonah Goldberg writes, “If you really want to yoke your reproductive choices to the issue of climate change (a bizarre desire if you ask me), maybe you should have as many kids as possible and educate them in science and engineering so they can come up with a solution.”
There are many people out there who choose not to have children, and that’s their right. Certainly there are foolproof ways to achieve this. But their choice should not be imposed on the rest of us. Nor, if they wish to terminate their pregnancy, should it be our responsibility to pay for it — and that’s where Oregon has gone off the trail once again. But such is what you get when you value your own comfort and ideology above life itself.