“Where’s the Controversy in Saving Lives?” asks Melinda Gates, in a blog post defending her $560 million campaign to spread “family planning,” in all its forms, throughout the Third World.
She invited visitors to the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation website to “watch this video and let me know what you think.”
So I watched her video and this is what I think: Mrs. Gates has deliberately ignored the link between “family planning” and sexual promiscuity and abortion.
She says the aim of her campaign is “simply giving a woman the opportunity to decide when to become a mother.” She says, “Women in Kenya, Malawi and India want this power.” And she says that, by mass distributing contraceptives, more than a quarter-million maternal deaths can be prevented each year.
But the “family planning” issue is not as simple, not as uncontroversial, as Mrs. Gates suggests.
Indeed, if a woman is married, but unready to become a mother, then most Christians, most social conservatives, have no problem with her using contraceptives.
But it’s a different story if a woman is unmarried. The purpose served by the Gates Foundation’s contraceptives is not “family planning,” but to enable the single woman to be sexually promiscuous without risk of pregnancy.
The most odious aspect of “family planning” is that it places pregnancy prevention on the same par with pregnancy termination, suggesting they are simply different means to the same end.
But while almost every one sees the value in preventing unwanted pregnancies – from National Right to Life to Planned Parenthood – those of us who believe in the sanctity of pre-born life absolutely oppose the termination of unwanted pregnancies by means of abortion.
That’s why it doesn’t matter that, say, Planned Parenthood, which attended the London Family Planning Summit at which Mrs. Gates formally announced her campaign, provides a range of women’s health services, including breast exams, pap tests and tests for sexually-transmitted diseases.
That is negated by the fact that America’s leading abortion provider is responsible for the mass murder of hundreds of thousands of unborn babies each year.
By the same coin, the Gates Foundation’s desire to save lives in the Third World, by helping women to avoid prevent unwanted pregnancies, is well and good.
But not if its “family planning” program leads to increased sexual promiscuity among unmarried woman. And not if it “empowers” Third World women while depriving the unborn of their God-given right to life.