Babies Have Mothers — and Fathers

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Tuesday, 07 May 2013 05:13 PM

By Alveda King

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The Chris Evert and Jimmy Connors story is a chilling reminder that aborted babies have two parents. The two tennis greats are in the news because of their abortion years ago. Not her abortion — their abortion.

How many fathers are denied the opportunity to see their children whose mothers choose to abort when the fathers don't agree? The law gives the father no choice even though 23 of the chromosomes of the aborted baby belong to him.

Many people say that men should stay out of the abortion debate, that it’s none of their business; that they have nothing to do with what a woman does with her body.

Just as the Kermit Gosnell murder trial opened a can of worms that the abortion industry did not want opened, the Connors /Evert situation is proof that yet another can needs to have its lid snapped right off.

For 40 years women have been undergoing legal abortions — often where the woman is forced or coerced into having an abortion against her will. There have also been cases where the fathers did not want their babies aborted, but were told it was not their decision. Not their choice to make.

In recent days Chris Evert, the tennis star, blasted her former beau, Jimmy Connors, for writing in his book about the abortion. He blames the abortion for breaking the couple up back in the 1970s. He recalled that his response to Evert’s decision to seek an abortion at the time was, "Well, thanks for letting me know. Since I don't have any say in the matter, then I guess I am just here to help.”

As more time passes since Roe v. Wade, more men like Connors are stepping forward to talk about their experience with abortions as well as the collateral damage they have caused.

Some of these testimonies can be found through the men's link at the Silent No More Awareness Campaign website.

Rachel’s Vineyard, a ministry of healing after abortion, has also seen an increased participation by men in their weekend healing retreats. In fact, the need for healing for post abortive fathers has grown so much that the organization now has a webpage dedicated to men.

As I often say, abortion hurts women and men. The "and men” should not be an afterthought because the reality is that while men may not be able to get pregnant or carry an unborn baby, the loss of a child is just as real — and the pain of that loss can be just as devastating — for men as it is for women.

Abortion is about the killing of a human life. Any participation in that killing or the inability to do something to prevent a child’s death can have traumatic effects on the father as well as the mother.

As Kevin Burke, co-founder of Rachel’s Vineyard wrote on May 4, 2011 in his story of celebrity Steven Tyler’s abortion:

“The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders defines a traumatic event as follows: “1. The person experienced, witnessed, or was confronted with an event or events that involved actual or threatened death or serious injury, or a threat to the physical integrity of self or others. 2. The person’s response involved intense fear, helplessness, or horror.

“Those who support abortion rights assure us that post-abortion complications are a myth. But Steven Tyler cuts through this fog of denial and lays it on the line: Jesus, what have I done?

“This is the cry of a post-abortive father whose very intimate exposure to the reality of abortion fits the textbook definition of trauma — as set down by the very same American Psychiatric Association that assures us abortion is a safe procedure with no negative effects on a man’s or a woman’s mental health.”

I thank God that the father of my fifth child said “no” to my having another abortion. He knew that 23 of the chromosomes were his and he wanted them to be given life in the baby I was carrying. My grandfather agreed with him.

While these two men didn't have wombs, they had a stake in the life of the baby. Connors’ pain is telling. Every baby has a mother and a father.

Dr. Alveda C. King grew up in the civil rights movement led by her uncle, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. She is a pastoral associate and director of African-American outreach for Priests for Life and Gospel of Life Ministries. Her family home in Birmingham, Ala., was bombed, as was her father’s church office in Louisville, Ky. Alveda herself was jailed during the open housing movement. Read more reports from Dr. Alveda C. King — Click Here Now.

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