Pregnancy Reductions: Why are “Pro-Choice” Advocates Uncomfortable?



August 22, 2011

 André Schutten – The term “Pregnancy Reduction” is probably one of the greatest (or one of the most horrific) euphemisms in vogue these days.  The term is used to describe the practice of reducing the number of babies in a multi-baby pregnancy by eliminating (read: killing) one or more fetuses in the womb.

 This practice is becoming all the more common with In-Vitro Fertilization procedures. Standard to the procedure is the process whereby multiple embryos are implanted into the uterus with the hopes that one or two might survive. But often times more than one or two survive (remember Octo-mom?) And many people who use IVF are not prepared to have two or more children; they only want one. So, they “reduce”. They see a doctor (read: abortionist) who selects one of the two (or two of the three, or three of the four, etc.) babies and eliminates them, while the sibling continues to live and grow, apparently oblivious to the demise of his or her brother or sister.

 And this practice is apparently a little un-nerving for some pro-choice folks. A recent story in  The New York Times Magazine about the “pregnancy reduction” procedure showed the moral quagmire that abortion becomes with these extensions of the moral dillema. The story has resulted in many comments and discussions. In fact, there are commentaries from all over the map on the morality of such a procedure. (For some examples of “pro-choice unease, see here and here. For excellent commentary on the issue, see Dr. Nadel, Dr. Margaret Sommerville, ProWoman ProLife, William Saletan, and Run With Life.)

 But how can someone who claims that a woman should have the unfettered right to an abortion at any time and for any reason suddenly get queasy when some women decide they want only to care for one of their two perfectly healthy, unborn twins. Really, it’s the same logic.

 Incidentally, there is another procedure that just does not get enough news coverage that causes so much consternation for the radical feminist: sex-selection abortions. In countries like China and India, boys out-number girls 5:4 or even 4:3 in some areas because boys are more desirable than girls in those cultures. So, a radical feminist that believes a woman should have the right to choose up until the moment of birth for any reason or no reason at all (which is the current legal reality in Canada), they should have no qualms with such a practice. My body, my choice, right?

 All of this to say, the pro-abortion side of the argument always falls apart. There is nothing moral or good about abortion. It always takes the life of at least one innocent human being and until our country realizes this, the macabre practice will continue unabated for quite some time, and the curiously befuddled pro-aborts, although uncomfortable with pregnancy reductions and sex-selection abortions, will shrug their shoulders and say, “Ah well, a small price to pay for the unfettered right to do what I want, when I want with my body, damn* the consequences.”

We can’t stand idly by. We have to speak out. We must show Canada that this practice is barbaric. As Detrich Bonhoeffer, in the face of Nazi brutality and oppression, once said, “Silence in the face of evil is itself evil: God will not hold us guiltless. Not to speak is to speak. Not to act is to act.” Bonhoeffer said that in the face of a totalitarian regime which eventually executed him; he practiced as he preached. We live in a free society, were such expression is not met with jail (usually) or execution. Will we have the courage?

*I am very careful to use this word. I deliberately used it in, what I think is, a proper context.


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