Believe it or not, the abortion lobby and its allies in Congress are actually pushing legislation to prevent just such an occurrence — or at least that is the excuse they are giving for attempting to regulate crisis pregnancy centers’ advertising.
According to CNSNews.com, Rep. Carolyn Maloney (D-N.Y.) and Sen. Robert Menendez (D-N.J.) have reintroduced a bill (first introduced in 2007) that would require the Federal Trade Commission to “promulgate rules to prohibit, as an unfair and deceptive act or practice, any person from advertising with the intent to deceptively create the impression that such person is a provider of abortion services if such person does not provide abortion services.”
Crisis pregnancy centers often advertise with billboards bearing the words “Pregnant? Need help?” To the untrained eye such ads simply appear to be offering some sort of unspecified assistance to pregnant women who are unsure about having a baby. To the eagle eyes of NARAL Pro-Choice America, Planned Parenthood, and other militant abortion supporters, however, this is false advertising because the best way, in their opinion, to help a pregnant woman is to kill her baby.
NARAL’s website, for example, says that crisis pregnancy centers “often mislead women into believing that they provide a full range of reproductive-health services. They do so by using questionable advertising tactics and providing dishonest or evasive answers when women call to inquire about their services.”
Planned Parenthood echoes these sentiments, telling visitors to its website that crisis pregnancy centers “are fake clinics run by people who are anti-abortion. They often don’t give women all their options. They have a history of scaring women into not having abortions. Absolutely no one should pressure you or trick you into making a decision you’re not comfortable with.” (Curiously, the pressure-free salespeople at Planned Parenthood perform abortions at a ratio of 62-to-1 over performing adoption referrals.)
Despite their public professions of concern for truth in advertising, the fact is that abortion activists know perfectly well what these signs mean: fewer abortions.
Joe Young, vice president of Heartbeat International, a worldwide pro-life association, told CNSNews, “Pregnancy centers are reducing the number of abortion sales, and this aggravates the abortion industry.”
Similarly, Melinda Delahoyde, president of Care Net, another pregnancy-center network, said, “What’s happening is that pregnancy centers have become an integral part of a community’s support network for women and children. With such holistic support available, women are empowered to choose abortion alternatives and the abortion industry simply doesn’t like losing business.”
There are money and political power in increased abortions and very little of either in decreased abortions, hence the push to effectively end crisis pregnancy center advertising.
If crisis pregnancy centers were really representing themselves as abortion clinics to trick unsuspecting women into not having abortions, perhaps the pro-abortion crowd would have a case; but in that event, existing truth-in-advertising laws would suffice to prosecute the lying pro-lifers. That in itself ought to prove what the Maloney-Menendez bill is all about.
Like most government regulations, it is designed to stifle competition for existing (usually big) businesses — and the abortion industry is big business: Planned Parenthood is a $1 billion company. The only difference between this bill and one that, e.g., forces barbers to get a state license is that barber licensing just makes a haircut more expensive, while the Maloney-Menendez bill makes vastly premature death far more likely. This bill ought not see the light of day so that more babies will.