By Jackie Anderson, SFLA Communications Director
June is unofficially the month of men. Father’s Day falls on June 19th this year. The release of X-Men: First Class last week helped to begin the month with a testosterone-infused rush to the box office. Like similar holidays, we take time this month to celebrate those whom we love, those who have loved us from the start, and sometimes, those we may not see as often as we wish.
Men play an intrinsically different role in our lives than women do. From an early age, we’re taught the idiosyncrasies that make men who they are, and similarly, that make women equally as unique. Baby boys get blue painted rooms and toy trucks after their first sonogram; little girls will wear pink ruffles and decide to cut their Barbie’s hair themselves. Boys scrape their knees climbing trees and girls will discover early on that a slumber party with best friends beats the outdoors any day. Men are categorized for their power and strength; women for their gentle, nurturing souls. The question, after the aforementioned and established cultural deliberation, is this: when did it become acceptable to remove men from the topic of abortion?
The basic, secular pro-life argument is founded on bedrock truths concerning biology. Take DNA A, merge it with DNA B and you get DNA C. Simple enough (though, frustratingly, not for everyone), and with that example you have life’s simplest equation: 50% + 50% = 100%. Fifty percent of us come from our mothers, who selflessly and fearlessly carry us to term and raise us to be solid contributors to society.
And the other fifty percent of us, as dictated by simple biology, comes from our fathers, who contribute DNA, late night ice cream trips for their expecting counterparts, and the strength of their own character and spirit that they hope will one day be reflected in our own selves. A whole half of our mothers is within ourselves; no more, no less. Consequently, the same goes for our fathers.
And while we’re on the topic of math, it’s 100% impossible to conceive without men. In some way, shape or form, men are involved in 100% of conceptions worldwide, throughout the history of human life, no matter the race, religion or creed. It’s simple biology.
How, then, is abortion strictly a “women’s issue”? How is the expulsion of men from a conception they take 50% biological responsibility for any less illogical than the argument surrounding the age-old “my body, my choice” agenda?
The sad reality today is that many fathers who want to have a strong presence in the lives of their child are denied this fundamental right, as the life of their child is snuffed out of existence without them even having the legal right to say otherwise. Regardless of whether or not the father had a say in his partner’s abortion, men do suffer the same damaging psychological effects after abortion that often women experience.
Being a father means getting to hold your brand new son or daughter, the newest person on the planet at the time of their birth and imaging their future. It means scraped knees and tea parties, exorbitant texting bills in middle school, and driving lessons and boyfriends in high school. Picking out softball teams, colleges, and wedding dresses. Most amazingly, it means getting to play a prominent role in this tiny person, this little ball of blankets ultimately will become.
The beautiful gift of fatherhood and the inalienable rights and attributes attached to the men fortunate enough to hold the title should be celebrated daily. Similarly, a heightened sense of fatherhood and the necessity to celebrate the role fathers play in the lives of their children should be emphasized within the pro-life movement.
It is no secret that many women who choose to abort their child do so because they feel as though their partners are unsupportive of their decision to embark on motherhood; it is also no secret that some men are less than supportive of welcoming a child and subsequent financial burdening into their lives.
But what about the men who feel blessed to be a part of something so miraculous, something that could only change his life for the better?
All fathers should be celebrated for their role in the creation of a new child, and these fathers should be especially celebrated for their decision to welcome this gift into their lives for they serve as role models.
This month, the staff of Students for Life of America urges you to do something special for your fathers who have all chosen to celebrate the gift you have been to them since your humble beginning. Consider writing your father a thank you note. It’s simple and to the point, and with the whole world shifting to email and twitter, he might appreciate the extra effort. There are few better ways to tell someone how you feel than writing it down. Men tend to be less emotional than women, but everyone appreciates being appreciated. Find a funny card you know he’d appreciate, or devote your Facebook status to him for a day. Small, thoughtful efforts like these go a long way in shining a light on those who mean the most to us, and certainly do much to reflect a truly pro-life heart.