“We must return to the progressive roots of the pro-life movement”

Where do we go after the Supreme Court’s decision? A young author’s take

Davis Staedtler via Flickr

2 min read

Roe & Casey allowed tens of millions of unborn children from my generation to be legally killed, with no recourse or protections. I mourn their deaths, and so I am grateful that the next generation may be protected because of the Supreme Court’s ruling in Dobbs.

I also recognize that how the pro-life movement got here, via toxic ties to one party to the exclusion of the other, is highly problematic, and makes our work to build a culture of peace much more difficult: when partisan rhetoric closely tied to the pro-life spoke hate and fear, it only makes sense that people would question our authentic commitment to human dignity for all. Consistency in our effort for human rights is key, a crucial necessity as we move forward.

Dobbs may be a pyrrhic victory if we as pro-lifers don’t urgently work to enact holistic, life-affirming policies such as family leave, the child tax credit, universal healthcare, childcare, access to healthy housing, restorative justice after abortion, etc. In my youthful opinion, these are things that should have been part and parcel of a pro-life movement of nearly half a century, because these are solutions that affirm the life and dignity of both mother and child, and make abortion less likely.

Now, more than ever, we must return to the progressive roots of the pro-life movement and declare that we are our brother’s or sister’s keeper. We must reach across the pro-life/pro-choice divide, working to build authentically life-affirming reproductive justice solutions to reduce the perceived need for abortion and support life in all stages, in all circumstances.

Instead of retreating to our respective silos, refusing to talk with those “on the other side” of the issue, we must dig down deep to reach our stores of empathy and engage in radical encounter, where we listen, learn, and—with hopeful hearts—move forward to build a future where no one would want an abortion. We should work together to envision and co-create a world where each and every human will be respected, valued, and protected in our culture and welcomed in our hearts and our homes.

Aimee Murphy is the founder of Rehumanize International and author of the book Rehumanize: A vision to secure human rights for all, published by New City Press.

Join the conversation. Send your thoughts to the editor Jon Sweeney.