Pro-Abortion Groups Mobilize to Overturn US/Mexico City Policy
by Austin Ruse
Catholic Family and Human Rights Institute
Editors’ Note: Austin Ruse writes a weekly column which watchdogs international policy that impacts the family. This week he highlights the massive campaign being mounted by pro-abortion groups to fight President Bush’s denying use of US money to fund abortions overseas.
Radical non-governmental organizations are mounting a united and concentrated attack on President George Bush for denying use of US money for their international efforts to spread abortion. By reenacting the Mexico City policy with his first executive order, Bush has so enraged pro-abortion groups that they are mounting an offensive aimed at discrediting his presidency and promoting their own pro-abortion agenda. The Mexico City policy ends US support for family planning programs overseas if they promote or perform abortions.
The Center for Reproductive Law and Policy (CRLP) complains in its monthly column “Bushwhacked” that the Mexico City policy will sharply curtail their efforts to promote abortion in several Catholic countries. They specifically mention Peru, Bolivia and Chile each of which either have significant restrictions on abortions or ban them outright. CRLP is essentially a law-firm that files legal challenges to abortion laws and abortion opponents in the US and around the world.
The National Abortion and Reproductive Rights Action League (NARAL) is orchestrating what may be the most comprehensive attack. It has announced a four-year $40 million campaign against “the unprecedented threat posed by President Bush.” Their campaign seeks to organize and mobilize pro-abortion forces to fight pro-life policies “at every level.” Their campaign includes newspaper ads and the launch of a new website with links to send letters to Congress and sign petitions critical of Bush policies.
A new joint campaign titled PLANet seeks to coordinate and promote international family planning, in addition to showing “how U.S. support for such programs is critical for their success.” The diverse partnership is composed of traditionally pro-abortion organizations like International Planned Parenthood Federation (IPPF) and Population Action International, but also includes the National Audubon Society, Save the Children and CARE, organizations that have otherwise good reputations. PLANet complains that increasing population endangers butterfly and bird species.
IPPF Director-General Ingar Brueggemann has also complained about the loss of funds and urges pro-abortion forces “to join us in the fight to save lives.” Brueggemann estimates Mexico City policy will cost her organization over 25 percent of their operating budget. IPPF is the world’s largest and richest abortion provider in the world and spends millions of dollars every year trying to change various national laws against abortion. Most countries have restrictions on abortion, something IPPF hopes to overturn.
Pro-abortion forces refer to Mexico City policy as the “global gag rule” saying it prevents legitimate discussion of abortion even in life threatening situations. So far the mainstream media has mostly resisted using this pro-abortion term, perhaps because pro-abortion groups have not explained how they are being gagged. The new provision states only that an NGO or other international agency cannot promote abortion while receiving US funds. These groups remain free to perform and promote abortion with their own money.
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2001 Meridian Magazine. All Rights Reserved.