By Dave Andrusko
Editor’s note. I wrote this a while back and it was well received. I trust it’ll retain your interest.
“These sorts of falsehoods coming from abortion supporters are perhaps the best evidence of the strength of the pro-life argument. It is far easier to spread myths and lies about pro-lifers, dismissing us as crazy religious zealots, than to confront the possibility that our argument is true and that abortion is unjust killing”—Alexandra DeSanctis, National Review Online.
Interesting sometimes how reading two articles back-to-back (one from a pro-lifer, the other from a veteran pro-abortion scribe) can provide mutually reinforcing insights.
The above quote comes from a post written by the talented Ms. DeSanctis. She is much more polite than I am in critiquing the Instagram musings of New York Times reporter Taylor Lorenz whose beat is “Internet culture.”
DeSanctis lays out a few of Ms. Lorenz’s latest pro-abortion fantasies. DeSanctis writes, “Lorenz shared several posts from pro-abortion feminist Liz Plank, all of which contained inaccurate and intentionally vague assertions about the nefarious pro-life movement.”
Judging by the quotes, Plank is wrong factually about as thoroughly as you could be and, as is typical with pro-abortionists, she essentially argues the pro-life movement was birthed in hell and nurtured by Satan. I exaggerate but only slightly.
There are pro-abortion scholars whose interpretations and conclusions I thoroughly disagree with but whose research is worth reading. Plank assuredly does not fall into the latter category.
DeSanctis’ point, as illustrated by the opening quote and summarized in the following passage, is
Utter falsehoods like those crafted by Plank and spread by Lorenz serve a key purpose of the abortion-rights supporter: to ignore or deny, by any means necessary, the sincerity of the pro-life movement, so as not to have to grapple with the heart of our argument.
Speaking of the heart of our argument and what should I run across next? “The study that debunks most anti-abortion arguments.” Written for the New Yorker by Margaret Talbot, it is 100% uncritical, even celebratory, piece on the [in]famous “Turnaway Study.”
We—particularly Dr. Randall K. O’Bannon, NRL Director of Education & Research–have critiqued this study over and over and over again. It will not die. The team at University of California -San Francisco (UCSF) that first put it together and published the results in 2007, recycles the same misleading data year after year after year.
It purports to tell us the differing experiences of those women who had their abortions and those who were “turned away” (hence the title) most often because the baby was so far along.
Or, as Dr. O’Bannon put it, originally, it was “a five-year-long study that was supposed to be designed to determine the social, psychological, and economic consequences of having an abortion versus being ‘denied’ an abortion in some cases because the pregnancy was so advanced.”
The latest iteration came out last February. Dr. O’Bannon, unlike Ms. Talbot, closely examined where the study came up short (practically everywhere). To take just one example, in some earlier published studies, they did tell us what happened to women who went on to have their babies. But in the study from earlier this year, these women were conspicuously absent.
Here’s a long excerpt from Dr. O’Bannon’s February analysis but it is nub of the many shortcomings.