Sunday, May 8, 2016

Unseen on Mother's Day

I have always believed that a fundamental difference between a Democrat and Republican is how they view the world. Democrats see the world in much more theoretical and idealistic terms. Republicans tend to be more practical and pragmatic in their outlook.

Democrats want policy solutions based on how they think the world should work in theory. Republicans favor policies based on how the world really works in practice.

Democrats also generally confine themselves solely to visible effects. They seem to consider only first-level effects and ignore everything else that might flow from that.  All of their focus is on what they see in front on them. They ignore the unseen issues. Republicans, on the other hand, are generally considering both the immediate effects and second-level effects. The seen and the unseen. Especially the unseen effects which should be foreseen.


There is no issue that you can "see" this difference more than on the issue of abortion.

A woman who is pregnant is seen and known. An unborn baby is unseen and unknown.  At least, that is how many liberal Democrats see it. They only see the life of the mother that is affected today. All of the value is given to that life. The life of the baby's future is unseen. And since it is unseen it is easy to forget and ignore.

There is no more contentious and emotional issue today than abortion. It literally places two lives and sets of rights in the balance. Which right is to be given precedence? The right of a woman to choose or the right of the baby to live?

We see the woman. She is seen.

In fact, a 2008 study indicated that 30% of all women in the United States would have an abortion by the time they were age 45. Many argue that this number is now overstated due to the fact that abortions have been declining over the years. However, new estimates will not be available until 2017 to confirm this. To give you an idea of the general decline, a 1992 study estimated that 43% of women of reproductive age in that year would have an abortion by age 45!

If you want to understand why abortion is a contentious, emotional political issue, consider those numbers. Those women are seen at the voting booths.

In addition, there is nothing more difficult in dealing with human beings than to try to take something away from someone. People do not lightly give up "rights" that they have. It is no different with 2nd Amendment rights. "Rights" are not easily relinquished by anyone. It is next to impossible to turn back the clock. That is why it is such a tough issue for Republicans no matter the merits of the cause.

Although abortion remains "legal" the Right To Life movement in the United States has made impressive strides over the last three decades in educating the public about the development of the unborn child and the emotional trauma that abortion has on the mother. In 1981, there were 29.3 abortions per 1,000 women between ages 15-44. By 2011 that number had dropped to 16.9 per 1,000. There has been real progress in changing many minds on this issue over the years. However, I see no path to reverse Roe v. Wade any time soon considering the numbers cited in this post.

Over 1 in 5 pregnancies in the United States still end with an abortion today. The U.S. ranks 30th out of 101 countries in the percent of abortions. In Russia, 45% of all pregnancies end with abortions. That ranks second in the world next to Greenland where more than half of all pregnancies are aborted.  Compare that to some of the countries that see almost no abortions--India 2.6%, Venezuela .8%, Mexico .09%, Panama .02%.

What about the unseen? The unborn child.

Since the 1973 Supreme Court decision in Roe v. Wade there have been an estimated 58 million abortions in the United States. Almost 18 million of that total were African American babies.

58 million is a big number.  To put that in context, that is roughly the combined population of New York, Florida, Illinois and New Jersey.

What potential existed in those 58 million? What would they have become? What might they have accomplished? We will never know. It is unseen.

However, we can look at others in history that might have not been given the chance. What did they become? The mothers of these babies chose life for their child even though they were ill-prepared to bring up the child themselves when they might have made another choice.

The talents, works and accomplishments of these recognizable names would forever be unseen but for the choice their mothers made. They chose life. And in that choice will all were all given something in our own lives.

Steve Jobs

President Gerald Ford

President Barack Obama

Oprah Winfrey

Faith Hill

Jack Nicholson

Marilyn Monroe

Eartha Kitt

Reverend Jesse Jackson

LeBron James

It is worth thinking about these mothers (and many more) on Mother's Day who made the right choice.

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