A common point of contention between pro-life people and pro-choice people is the issue of being simply “pro-birth”, not really pro-life. This criticism is generally applied to Republicans who, though they support the pro-life movement, do not support efforts to improve the situations of the women seeking abortions to better allow them to care for the children they are considering aborting.
This is one criticism of the pro-life movement I strongly suggest be heeded and that the pro-life community work to change. In part, this claim of “pro-birth” is untrue, as portions of the pro-life movement have been working to provide the support suggested for a long time, but it is a valid complaint in some respects, especially in the political sense. The Republican party needs to consider changing as much as the pro-life movement does on this same issue.
So, what is being fully pro-life then? It means several things, but chief among them is creating a culture which supports life. This culture would generate efforts to support women considering abortions with services like affordable prenatal care, basic infant necessities, food for low-income families, and daycare facilities. Not only should these efforts be generated at a community level, but the government might do well to consider what it can do to further provide for these needs.
The Republican party takes a strong moral stance against abortion, but does not always support this stance with compassion and willingness to help in situations where it is needed. To achieve the paramount goal of ending abortion, perhaps smaller political goals such as opposition to food stamps and some social services need to be refocused.
The pro-life movement in the Republican party also faces one other issue if it wants to remain firmly attached to the Republican party. The death penalty supporting side of the Republican party and the pro-life movement have some issue being under the same banner. How can one be pro-life and pro-death? Granted, the issue of guilt of the one being put to death arises, but where the path for keeping someone alive can be safely taken, death should be removed from the situation as an option.
Although the Republican party is typically associated with the pro-life movement, the Democratic party has some of the social safety net concerns more fitting the movement. This is of course offset by the extreme pro-choice wing of the Democratic party. The issue of abortion seems like a good opportunity for compromise between the parties; something rare and valuable. If Democrats could make a place in their party for the pro-life movement, they would find a wellspring of new support and a means of cooperation with Republicans on key issues such as public housing and education. If the Republicans can extend a hand (and a wallet) to the underprivileged, can the Democrats extend a hand to the unborn?