How the “pro-life” movement kills people

Weird but true: the states most gung-ho to ban abortion are also the ones really bad at keeping actually born human beings alive. Yes, in places like Georgia, Alabama, and Texas, infant mortality and maternal death rates are shockingly high.

Here in Texas it’s particularly bad; if we were our own country (as some of my fellow Texans like to pretend) we would have the highest maternal death rate among industrial nations of the world.

Wow! It sure seems like there is some kind of correlation between reproductive rights and reproductive care! Who would have thought, except for everyone on earth who pays any attention to this kind of thing at all.

They’re also the states with the most teen pregnancies, and lots of chlamydia. And serious problems with shortages of primary care physicians and ob-gyns.

It’s almost as if there’s a correlation between the availability of fact-based sex education that includes accurate information about contraception and good medical care – which includes abortion – and rates of pregnancy, disease, and death.

Naturally the Texas legislature is responding to this situation by proposing a law to prevent local governments from working with Planned Parenthood on anything, which of course will reduce the availability of contraception and medical care for Texas women.

Because ultimately the “pro-life” movement is about controlling women, discouraging sex, and punishing those who transgress. Yes, there are people who are against abortion because they sincerely believe it’s terrible, even if that belief is not supported by any medical evidence about fetal development or any religious tradition that predates the mid-twentieth century. They are entitled to believe that anyway, of course.

But the people playing on that to get their votes, whether they believe it or not, certainly don’t have any discernible “pro-life” motivation, given their desire to keep doing things that will lead to women – and children – dying.

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