by Alexandra Nadane President, Studenți pentru viață (“Students for Life”)
The theme “Pro-Life, Pro-Woman, Pro-Family” has been inspired by the theme of the Washington, DC March for Life 2016: “Pro-life and pro-woman go hand in hand”. Pro-life organizations from România and The Republic of Moldova felt like adding a third term, “Pro-Family”, in order to emphasize that family is the only natural environment nurturing both the welfare of the child and the welfare of the woman and also that a child born outside a family does not prevent a family being set up – on the contrary, it is always the first step towards it.
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If Romanians see themselves and are also seen by others like people who help each other in need, why this support, this solidarity cannot also be seen when it comes to the woman in pregnancy crisis?
The main reasons why society doesn’t support the woman in pregnancy crisis is the preconception that being pro-life is being anti-woman; also, the preconception that those who favour chosing life for the child are actually waging war against women, while abortions supporters are those who protect the women. The abortion approach during communism is to blame for these preconceptions. Legal restrictions on abortion during communism were not meant to be pro-life, they only provided for the state’s political interest: they were meant neither to support the woman in crisis, nor to protect the unborn; they were only meant to increase demographic indicators in order to cater for the economic needs of the state. A very serious consequence of this kind of law were the abandoned children.
The huge number of abandoned and institutionalized children during the communist regime was a direct consequence of the communist dictatorship. Before the communist regime in Romania, the community felt responsible towards the children who weren’t cared for by their natural family. Adopted children were named “soul children” and did not suffer any stigma.
This theme clearly states that whoever says the pro-life movement doesn’t care about the woman and that abortion solves women’s problems is wrong. In fact, the pro-life movement focuses on both woman and child, while abortion, in most cases is an exploitation of the woman for the sake of personal comfort, because of a double irresponsibility: the man’s and society’s. That is why abortion has been named “the ultimate exploitation of women” by Alice Paul, famous activist for women’s rights .
This theme’s choice also states what experience has shown in many real cases: the child’s birth is in the best interest of the woman, while abortion on demand only aggravates and perpetuates different problems, to which it adds newer ones. Chosing life for her baby will actually empower the woman and grant her a more accomplished future – at least through her child’s love; abortion hurts both the woman and her long-term future.
Experience has shown indeed that an unexpected and unwanted pregnancy can turn into a great chance for the woman, for her family or future family and for society if the woman is supported instead of being abandoned and stygmatized.
It was not by accident that Norma McCorvey and Sandra Cano, the two women used to serve the purpose of the lawsuits that led in 1973 to the liberalization of abortion in the US have subsequently become pro-life. Long-term experience confirms that whoever is pro-woman is also pro-life and whoever is pro-life is also pro-woman.
 Alice Paul (1885–1977) was a member of the Suffragette Movement, a feminist and an activist for women’s rights in the US. She was the main coordinator of the campaign which in 1919 led to the adopting the Nineteenth Amendament to the US Constitution, which granted women the right to vote.