For most of my teen years, I openly opposed abortion. When I was occasionally asked if I opposed contraception, too, I always responded like this: "No, I don't have a problem with contraception, because contraception prevents abortions!" Everyone always agreed with my answer, because it was common sense: Widespread acceptance and use of contraception makes abortion rare.
Well... not exactly.
In my mid-twenties, I was forced to reexamine my ideas on a whole range of life issues. By that point, I was all about conforming my mind and life to the truth, no matter where the truth led me, and no matter how uncomfortable.
What my studies on contraception bore out was indeed humbling, and I had to eat my words. The truth is the opposite of what I had spouted for years. The truth is that, at the macro-level, contraception leads to abortion. Where contraception is widely accepted, abortion follows.
It makes sense if you think about it, because contraception is a contract that says: "We agree to have sex but we do not agree to have a baby." However, the contract (contraception) fails so often that a fail-proof back-up plan is needed, and that fail-proof back-up plan is abortion.*
Let's look at evidence of how this all plays out in real life....
On the secular front, Margaret Sanger spearheaded the contraception movement with her founding of Planned Parenthood, originally named the American Birth Control League. Sanger did not champion abortion, she championed contraception. As natural progression would have it, Planned Parenthood went from peddling contraception to peddling abortion; today it is the largest provider of abortions in our nation. The progression from contraception to abortion was natural and easy.
Within Christianity, the acceptance of contraception began with the Anglican Church in 1930. They cracked the door to allow contraception only for married folk, and only in serious situations. Within a few decades, however, contraception had become widely accepted by the Anglicans and most other Christian churches, many of which then slid into acceptance of abortion as well. The Episcopal Church (the American branch of the Anglican Church) now officially and proudly supports abortion rights, as do many other mainline Protestant denominations -- all of which traditionally condemned contraception. For much of Protestant Christianity, the progression from contraception to abortion has been natural (if not always easy).
Now let's look at how abortion came to us legally.
Roe v. Wade was the 1973 Supreme Court decision that legalized abortion nationwide. A "right to privacy" legal argument was used as the basis for that tragic decision. However, most Americans are unaware that the "right to privacy" (words not found in the Constitution) did not originate with Roe v. Wade, but with Griswold v. Connecticut in 1965, and Eisenstadt v. Baird in 1972. What were those cases? Griswold was the case that legalized the sale of contraception to married people, and Eisenstadt was the case that extended the same "right" to unmarried people. The "right to privacy" regarding contraception cleared the way for the "right to privacy" regarding abortion. The legal road from contraception to abortion was natural and easy.
But contraception and abortion don't have to be connected, right?
Well... not exactly.
Even the liberals justices on the Supreme Court of the United States (Casey v. Planned Parenthood, 1992) understood clearly that acceptance of contraception requires abortion as a back-up. That Court ruling stated that Roe v. Wade could not be overturned because
...for two decades of economic and social developments, [people] have organized intimate relationships and made choices that define their views of themselves and their places in society, in reliance on the availability of abortion in the event that contraception should fail. The ability of women to participate equally in the economic and social life of the Nation has been facilitated by their ability to control their reproductive lives. [emphasis mine]
Did you get that? We have organized our entire society around access to abortion, which is the fail-proof back-up for contraception!
The Casey ruling also states: "In some critical respects abortion is of the same character as the decision to use contraception" [emphasis mine].
So, the pro-abortion liberal Supreme Court justices have seen and understood the symbiotic relationship between contraception and abortion.
If not, would some studies convince you?
There have been several, but consider the most recent study out of Spain, published this month in the journal, Contraception. The researchers found that Spanish women's increase in contraceptive use coincides with a huge increase in the abortion rate. The authors of the study seem confused by the results, calling them "interesting and paradoxical" and suggesting "further investigation".
There is no need for further investigation, really. The findings make sense. Contraception is a contract, the contract fails, and abortion is the back-up. Logical, natural. This always happens. Contraception leads to abortion.
I appeal to my Christian brothers and sisters: Reconsider your support for contraception, and turn back to the wisdom of traditional Christian teaching. We've been taught that contraception will make abortion "rare" but that's a lie. Don't believe it any longer. Contraception and abortion are sisters in the Culture of Death, an unholy alliance. Reject both and choose life!
And to those pro-"choice" folks who sincerely believe that pushing contraception can be our "common ground" in working to make abortion rare, I hope you now see why that is impossible:
Because contraception leads to abortion.
In this discussion of how contraception leads to abortion, I have not even touched upon the fact that in some cases (the Pill, IUDs), contraception is abortion. The abortifacient nature of hormonal contraception and IUDs is the subject of a future post, but the very fact of it further exposes the incestuous relationship between contraception and abortion.