If you’re a fan of MTV and reality television, chances are you’ve been watching 16 and Pregnant. The show is exactly what it sounds like. Pregnant teenagers lives are chronicled as they face the decision to keep their children. So far on the show (which is in its second season), two girls have chosen adoption, while the rest have opted to raise their children themselves.
What’s lacking? Abortion.
Feminist blogger Jessica Valenti of Feministing recently complained:
“Where are the pregnant teens who choose not to stay pregnant? Where are the abortions?
I realize that it’s controversial to document a teenager who decides to end their pregnancy, but the fact is that nearly a third of all teen pregnancies end in abortion. But if you were to watch MTV, you’d never know that – you’d think all young women choose to go through with the pregnancy…”
Well, maybe MTV will eventually agree…maybe they won’t—either way, the fact remains, documenting a young mother ending the life of her child will likely hurt the pro-choice position more than help it.
The recent “#livetweetingabortion” controversy, for example, only seemed to reinforce pro-lifers in their position. The pro-choice crowd, on the other hand, was largely silent while Angie Jackson attempted the “demistify” abortion with constant twitter updates during her abortion using RU-486.
And do any “pro-choicers” remember Irene Vilar? Vilar’s memoir, Impossible Motherhood which detailed her 15 abortions over 16 years was released last year. The book was widely condemned by the pro-life movement and pointed to as evidence that—even for those who consider themselves “pro-choice,” at a certain point, abortion is wrong. Pro-abortion bloggers and critics were hesitant to even touch the book with ten foot pole.
What should they fear? Everything. Polls consistently show that the pro-life American majority is growing, and that the pro-life position is particularly growing amongst young people. MTV asked viewers of 16 and Pregnant to respond in an online poll and 59% responded that they did not believe in abortion, compared to just 34% that said they did believe.
Jessica Valenti points to the fact that nearly a third of all teenage pregnancies end in abortion, as if this was a winning argument. The truth is–hundreds of thousands of women regret their abortion; to quote Irene Vilar, they regret the “life interrupted” that they have destroyed within them.
If you doubt it, I encourage you to meet up with a woman from Silent No More. No testimony is more powerful than that of a woman who has experienced firsthand the physical and emotional pain and trauma that accompanies abortion.
I wish Jessica Valenti had considered this point before callously complaining that not enough 16-year-olds are subjecting themselves to this pain.