Alas, A Blog has posted a handy table showing how pro-life positions tend to correspond a different motivation than what they claim — that these positions aren’t consistent with a belief that abortion is murder, but are consistent with a belief that women should be punished for having sex. It’s quite compelling to see the argument laid out in this format.
Ampersand claims that he’s been reluctant to use the “pro-life movement is really anti-sex” argument in the past because he views it as an ad hominem attack. But, he says,
although I’ve met some rank-and-file “pro-lifers” whose policy preferences were consistent with a belief that a fetus is morally indistinguishable from a child, those folks usually have policy preferences which are totally out of step with the abortion criminalization movement as a whole.
In contrast, the leaders of the abortion criminalization movement have consistently put their political weight behind policies which make little or no sense if they genuinely think that abortion is identical to child murder. And they’ve done so with the apparent backing and blessing of the vast majority of the rank and file.
This is pretty much consistent with what I’ve seen in the comment wars here on Word Munger. I’ve had a commenter who defended the pro-life movement, but then said she’d be okay with abortions up to the fourth week of pregnancy. I’ve had a commenter who said it was ridiculous to say the pro-life movement was anti-sex, but when asked, pretty much matched up in attitudes to what is summarized in Ampersand’s chart, and I’ve seen no evidence that the pro-life leadership’s attitude is anything but anti-sex.