The first Scripture verse that came to mind when I viewed the shocking video produced by NARAL Pro-Choice New York, a video that attacks the reputation of pregnancy resource centers, was Isaiah 5:20:
“Woe to those who call evil good, and good evil, who change darkness into light, and light into darkness, who change bitter into sweet, and sweet into bitter!”
I came across the video through the EWTN News website (www.ewtnnews.com ), one of the resources I check each morning in preparation for my radio program. Ironically, later that day I gave a keynote speech as part of the Heartbeat International 40th anniversary celebration and conference in Columbus, Ohio. Heartbeat (www.heartbeatinternational.org) is an organization that serves and trains leaders in the pregnancy help movement around the world. My presentation focused on encouraging resource centers to engage the media — especially the secular media — to let them and anyone who would listen know about the incredible work these centers do, not only in affirming and promoting life but also by being a vital resource in the community and helping families.
The NARAL video is part of a strategy by the abortion industry to target the pregnancy help centers. The video is being presented to lawmakers to encourage them to create regulations restricting the way centers advertise, similar to measures passed in New York City, Baltimore and Austin. As the EWTN News report explained, the goal is to “regulate pregnancy centers out of existence.”
The video, titled “Exposing Crisis Pregnancy Centers One City at a Time,” is posted on YouTube. It accuses workers at the crisis pregnancy centers of running “brainwashing outfits” and distributing false information concerning the connection between abortion and breast cancer, even though more than two dozen studies have shown more than just a casual link. It also accuses workers of “emotionally bullying women when they are perhaps the most vulnerable.”
In watching it, I felt a great deal of righteous anger building inside me. Although the pro-life community is often accused of only caring about the baby, these pregnancy centers show that they are in this for the long haul. Not only do they offer women accurate information about all of their options, along with the well-documented medical and psychological issues associated with abortion, they also offer parenting classes, information on adoption agencies and help with basic needs such as food and diapers. They even offer transportation to doctor’s appointments and help with employment and housing-related issues. Many centers also conduct abstinence classes and sexual integrity programs for local school districts. They do it all without government funding and mostly through volunteer efforts, and they’re the bad guys?
James 1:2 also popped into my head as I watched the video, and it encouraged me and gave me great peace:
“Consider it all joy, my brothers, when you encounter various trials, for you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance.”
If centers weren’t impacting the abortion industry’s bottom line, there wouldn’t be a need for such a video or a pregnancy center strategy. The abortion business is a big business; the largest abortion provider, Planned Parenthood, receives more than $350 million in government funding. And yet these centers, operating on shoestring budgets, have these mammoth abortion providers worried. Consider it all joy indeed. Pregnancy centers are making a big difference.
Teresa Tomeo is the host of “Catholic Connection,” produced by Ave Maria Radio and heard daily on EWTN Global Catholic Radio and Sirius Channel 130.