The following comes from a Feb. 11 story by Kathryn Jean Lopez in National Review.
On Bleecker Street in Manhattan, there is Planned Parenthood, and there is also a boutique for pregnant women. According to Vogue, the store, Hatch, “is arguably the first of its kind, in that it was designed specifically for pregnant shoppers: Changing rooms have a size chart to help you figure out how a garment will fit your belly a few months down the line; there’s a ‘cravings bar’ with candy, pickles, and ice cream; and Goldman set up a downstairs meeting space for workshops and lectures, including one on breastfeeding and another called Dudes to Dads, in which new fathers can learn how to swaddle or change a diaper.”
When I find myself in the neighborhood, I often wish somewhere in the middle of the road between the forceps and the ice cream there could be a perpetual meeting place, where any woman looking for a moment’s pause could find a respite. I think of a woman named Eleanor McCullen, who for years has stood outside Planned Parenthood in Boston with a sign offering help, hope, and love. Who doesn’t want those things, whatever you’re facing? Many a woman has been relieved by her presence, invited by her warm, grandmotherly smile to revisit her options, having been on her way in for an abortion. She stands out like a seat of wisdom, someone who will walk with you — and she does. So much so that she and her husband have children named after them, are godparents to children who are in the world because they stepped out to extend a hand to someone who needed to be pulled out of darkness.
I’ve been thinking a lot about those women who get lost in our debates about abortion, and their children. The State of the Union address was a little bit of an occasion of sin for me because I couldn’t get past the women in white. They seemed to care most about the fact that they are in Congress. And yet, what difference does that make? Shouldn’t it be a window for a more tender politics? Instead, the Democratic party most noticeably and alarmingly appears to be doubling down on brutality. If an unborn child survives an abortion — is delivered alive — even then her life is not worthy of protection? The doctor governor of Virginia said as much the day before his medical-school yearbook hit the news for a blackface image. I was grateful for a moment for the connection it made between the two civil-rights movements. But, of course, that message seemed lost on most of those with the megaphones calling for his resignation. Are we resigned to such a poisonous way of life, one that is the very opposite of life-giving?