Would You Like A Pill with Your Coffee?

Imagine you’ve just sat down to a steaming, hot cup of cappuccino, a raisin bagel with honey-walnut cream cheese, and the daily morning newspaper. You’re comfortably dressed in your flannel pajamas and slippers. The dog is lying at your feet. Your husband turns to you and asks, “Would you like a pill with your coffee?”

Not just any pill, mind you. We’re not talking about a daily vitamin supplement, or an iron pill. We’re talking about a pill that will abort the life that God may have created within you last night.

Sound far-fetched? Far from it. Last Tuesday, the American Medical Association, even further abandoning its service to the health and welfare of the public, announced its unanimous approval for a resolution which would call on the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to consider making the “morning-after” pill available over-the-counter.

When taken within three days of sexual intercourse, the “morning-after” pill can act as a chemical abortifacient by preventing the implantation of a fertilized egg.

Such a decision is problematic for several reasons. First, it will make women responsible for the destruction of their pre-born children.

Second, teenagers in states that have parental consent laws will have access to the toxin without the consent of their parents.

Third, if such a toxin is sold over-the-counter, there may be no limit to how often the hormonally-based pill is purchased and used. Consequently, some women may be exposed to high dose hormones regularly, increasing the possibility for catastrophic side effects such as stroke and life-threatening blood clots, as well as other unknown health risks.

For example, physicians, for years have been prescribing birth control pills. They are just now beginning to see the health risks associated with oral contraceptives, health risks that can include both infertility and an increased risk for breast cancer. Doctors cannot yet know the health risks associated with the “morning after” pill.

Fourth, a 1996 meta-analysis of the pill shows that they are ineffective about 25 percent of the time, thereby exposing women’s unborn children to high doses of such hormones as well.

Predictably, Planned Parenthood has welcomed the news of the continuing assault on the unborn as a “wonderful decision.”

What is perhaps even more troublesome is the AMA’s description of the pill as emergency “contraception,” for the pill is not only contraceptive, but also abortifacient. We should not be surprised. After all, the semantics of abortion have long used euphemisms to sugarcoat the poison underneath.

Early feminists Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Susan B. Anthony referred to abortion as “child-murder.” Today’s wordsmiths, however, have pounded out and fashioned an entire glossary of euphemisms so that we no longer see abortion as the murder of a child. Such language has made killing into an acceptable “choice,” has reduced the pre-born baby to “prenatal tissue,” has minimized abortion to “terminating a pregnancy,” and has massaged infanticide into “partial birth abortion.”

The “morning-after” pill acts in two different ways. It can prevent ovulation from occurring or prevent the fertilized egg from implanting. While the “morning-after” pill can act as contraception, it also acts as an abortifacient. Yet, its creators are not sure how often it acts in either way. The AMA is suggesting that the drug prevents pregnancies, when in fact, it also causes abortions.

In William Brennan’s important book, Dehumanizing the Vulnerable, he cautions us not to let word games take lives. He argues that just such word games led to the evils of slavery and the German Holocaust against the Jews.

Let’s not let the wordsmiths of our culture fashion yet another euphemism for the murder of a child. Let’s call the “morning-after” pill what it is. Plain and simple — it’s an abortifacient.

Tim Drake


Tim Drake is an award-winning journalist, the author of six books on religion and culture, and a former radio host. Widely published, and a long-time contributor to the National Catholic Register, he serves as Senior Editor/Director of News Operations for the Cardinal Newman Society.

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