By Trudy Ring
Originally published on Advocate.com August 27 2012 3:42 PM ET
Antigay forces have said marriage equality will have many undesirable consequences, but here’s a new one: A U.K. anti-abortion group says it will lead to an increase in the number of abortions.
The Society for the Protection of Unborn Children, which opposes a proposal to offer the nation’s gay couples marriage rather than the existing civil partnerships, has been circulating a flier that states, “We must protect real marriage because it protects children in the womb. Statistics show that unborn babies are four or five times more likely to be aborted outside real marriage.”
The U.K. website Pink News notes that this argument does not seem to be very well thought out: “A married male couple cannot abort an unborn baby because neither party can carry one. A married female couple would only find themselves with child after a long and carefully considered process, making it highly unlikely they would ever seek an abortion; far less likely than a heterosexual woman in a traditional marriage who had gotten pregnant by accident.”
Jamie Lee Curtis Taete, a reporter for Vice magazine, contacted a representative of SPUC for clarification. The representative said marriage rights for same-sex couples would “redefine marriage” and “make people feel differently towards the institution.” Taete then researched abortion rates in five countries that have had marriage equality for at least five years and found that the rate had increased only in one, Spain. SPUC’s response to the findings was that the data didn’t cover a long enough period to prove anything — even in the Netherlands, where same-sex marriage has been legal for 11 years. Read more here.