As I walked my dog around the park the other day, I met a woman doing the same thing. We began talking and she asked me what I did for work. I told her I worked in adoption. Like so many others, she was very interested to know more and expressed her appreciation for those of us who are involved in the adoption world.
After we talked for a moment, she asked me a question: “When a pregnant woman is murdered, then they consider that a double homicide. But when a woman has an abortion, why is that not considered murder?” She went on to say, “I just don’t understand this!” I agreed. I hear so many times from women who are weighing their options say, “My friends and family want me to have an abortion and they will turn their backs on me if I place my baby for adoption.” Why is it that people would rather see a child killed than adopted?
Some legislators are wondering the same thing. Perhaps women just don’t know enough about adoption to make a good choice. Texas lawmakers are thinking this may be true. It’s being said that Texas State Democratic Senator, Ed Lucio, is looking to introduce a bill in the 2015 legislative session that would require a woman to participate in an hour-long adoption seminar before she would be able to have an abortion performed. A similar bill Lucio presented in the 2013 legislative session asked the Texas Health and Human Services Commission to create an adoption educational course that could be presented in up to 3 hours. This bill included the provision that a woman would have to submit a certification of completion of this course to the physician performing the abortion before she would be granted the “go ahead.” There is a provision to that bill that excluded women who had become pregnant through rape or incest or whose lives may be at risk due to the pregnancy.
The goal of Lucio and other Texas law makers is to present pregnant women with good and accurate information on adoption resources and services available to them. It is hoped that through this, more pregnancies will be carried to full term and more lives will be spared.
Other states are also taking action. In Ohio, the Right to Life group is planning a big slate of anti-abortion laws next year. In Iowa, lawmakers will be considering a bill that bans physicians from giving instructions on abortion-inducing drugs by phone or online.
Iowa currently has over 12 clinics where women can receive advice on how to use medication to induce an abortion at home. Lawmakers are working on passing bills to make this practice illegal. There have been ten other states where lawmakers have passed similar laws since 2011. As we look ahead to 2015, it could be a banner year for anti-abortion laws. This is the hope for many adoptive parents and for those who are champions for the unborn, who cannot make their voice heard.
I thank you, public lawmakers, for offering women education on the wonderful option of adoption. It is a joy for me every time I meet an adoptee, an adoptive parent, a birthparent that placed a child for adoption and the millions of others whose lives have been touched with good through adoption.