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[HT: Randi G.]
To be clear, some crisis pregnancy centers can be shady. They have been known to misleadingly portray themselves as full-service women’s health clinics, or to obscure religious affiliations. They may offer discredited info on things like “the link between abortion and depression,” or engage in what some describe as bullying or pressuring women into carrying pregnancies to term.
But the state really shouldn’t be in the business of deciding what completely non-criminal information a private operation may make available. And many businesses and non-profits have owners with religious beliefs that they don’t necessarily broadcast. In other words, you may condemn these pregnancy centers’ tactics or views, but they’re not de facto doing anything illegal. What’s more, they may doing some good: Despite not offering contraception or abortion advice, the centers do offer things like free pregnancy tests, screenings for sexually transmitted infections, ultrasounds, and baby clothes.
If particular centers are engaging in deceptive or fraudulent practices, then by all means, go after them for that. But the point should be making them be honest about what they are, not trying to turn them into something they’re not.
~ Pro-choicer Elizabeth Nolan Brown (pictured), voicing her objections to California’s Reproductive FACT Act, which “would require pregnancy centers to post notices saying that reproductive health services, including abortion, are available to pregnant women in the state,” Reason.com, May 27
[Photo via reason.com]