Lynn Paltrow, Founder and Executive Director of National Advocates for Pregnant Women (shown in the photo with Rochester NOW member Willa Powell) was the featured speaker at yesterday's Planned Parenthood of the Rochester/Syracuse Region luncheon.
We need to change the conversation about abortion. The Pro Choice conversation so far has been: It's about choice; We must defend Roe v Wade; We need to rally and march. That conversation may work for pro choice activists ... but it's too narrow for everyone else.
To explain, Paltrow told about the many letters she has read from women writing about their abortions. Not one of them, she said, had an abortion because it was her choice, or to save Roe v Wade. Their reasons were much more complex.
We need to change our conversation to talk about these reasons.
In today's Democrat and Chronicle, Patti Singer has a piece about a big federal grant the city of Rochester has received to combat teen pregnancy. Rochester, it turns out, has four of the 10 ZIP codes in the state with the highest birth rates among teens. Read Singer's article here.
Over the weekend I saw the movie Precious. This movie, about "an overweight, illiterate teen who is pregnant with her second child" is a soaring tribute to human dignity and, for me, captures the reasons why NAPW takes the cases we do.
Recently, NAPW chose to work on behalf of R.G. -- an African American teenager from Mississippi who became pregnant when she was fifteen. She suffered a stillbirth one month after turning sixteen. What was the state's response? They arrested her and charged her with murder.
NAPW learned about the case shortly before R.G. was scheduled to go on trial as an adult. We learned that her mother's efforts to obtain help from other organizations had been rebuffed. NAPW reached out to her local counsel and offered our assistance.