Earlier this morning I tuned into NPR for about five minutes, and I don't think I've ever heard so much excitement in a news report. Sometime this morning, America will have its first African American President. When my parents were children, the election of a black President seemed, for the foreseeable future, an unrealistic prospect. But we've come a long way in 40 years.
Symbolically, the election of Mr. Obama is exciting. It means hope and opportunity for Americans regardless of skin color. Teachers in low-income public schools (like the school where my wife teaches) can point to our President as proof that skin color or racial background is no longer an impediment to a child's hopes and aspirations.
Thus, it seems fitting that the theme of today's inauguration is "A New Birth of Freedom."
But the symbolism of Obama's skin color aside, the reality of Obama's policies is significantly at odds with the metaphor. You can probably guess what I mean.
Barack Obama has committed his presidency to securing almost unlimited access to abortions in America -- or, to put it another way -- almost unlimited access of abortion doctors to government funding and to confused and hurting young women looking for a solution to an unplanned pregnancy.
The specific legislation endorsed by Obama is called the Freedom of Choice Act (FOCA), and it would overturn almost every limitation on abortion that has been put in place by federal statute or state law. No more parental notification. No more limitations on late-term or partial-birth abortions. No more protection for physicians or hospitals that refuse to perform abortions.
Does this sound to you like a "new birth of freedom"? While more freedom for minorities is being born this morning, it's certain that fewer minority children will be born. (The majority of Planned Parenthood clinics are in poor minority neighborhoods.)
So in an ironic twist, the symbolic hope of Obama's election could easily turn into more exploitation of the poor and less freedom for everyone -- especially the most vulnerable.
You can find out more about FOCA -- and sign a petition -- at Fight FOCA.
As a non-profit entity, Carolina Hope does not take official positions in elections, and it has no affiliation with any political party. However, Carolina Hope is unapologitic in its defense of the rights of children -- born or unborn.