The pro-life campaign is changing hearts and minds.
More and more abortion clinics are closing down across America. So much so that the leftwing Huffington Post bemoans the “dramatic toll” that recent pro-life laws have taken on abortion clinics, with Arizona leading the way.
Tom Strode reports for the Baptist Press (via Christianity Today) that the reasons for closure vary, but the overall trend is clear:Abortion centers are shutting down at an unprecedented rate. The total so far this year is 44, according to the pro-life Operation Rescue, which monitors closings and health and safety violations by clinics nationwide. That number far surpasses the 25 surgical clinics shutdown last year and the 30 in 2011.
Among the 44 that closed this year are 42 clinics that provided surgical abortions, and two that offered chemical abortions by drugs. Some of the shutdowns have been of major clinics, including Virginia’s No. 1 abortion provider: NOVA Women’s Healthcare in Fairfax, Va., which shut down after state and local governments enacted regulations the abortion provider appeared unable to meet. The clinic had performed 3,066 abortions in 2012 and 3,567 in 2011.
The reasons given for the upswing in closings include:
- the increasing state regulation and oversight of clinics;
- a growth in pro-life opinion and activity, and
- a significant decline in the abortion rate.
- abortion doctors retiring or no longer being licensed.
A Planned Parenthood clinic closes in Bryan, Texas (photo: 40 Days for Life/Coalition for Life)
One of the clinics that closed this year was the Planned Parenthood center in Bryan, Texas. The closing came less than four years after Abby Johnson, responding to the call of her conscience, walked out of that clinic as its director and into the offices of the Coalition for Life.
Since her dramatic reversal, Johnson has become a leading pro-life advocate and has started a ministry to help workers leave the abortion industry. In a written statement after the announcement of the closing of the Bryan Planned Parenthood abortion center, Johnson pledges to “fight until every abortion clinic in this country has shut down” — “Knowing that the former abortion clinic I once ran is now closing is the biggest personal victory of my life. From running that facility, to then advocating for its closure, and now celebrating that dream … it shows that my life has indeed come full circle.”
State legislatures enacted 69 pro-life laws this year, according to a report released Thursday (Sept. 5) by Americans United for Life. In all, 48 states considered about 360 such proposals in 2013, AUL reported.
Some measures have targeted making the procedure and clinics safer for women, and have helped escalate the number of clinic shutdowns. This year, states such as Alabama, North Carolina and Texas passed varied laws either requiring abortion clinics to meet the same health and safety standards as outpatient surgical centers, or authorizing the state to enforce such requirements. Also, in 2013, North Dakota and Wisconsin joined Alabama and Texas in mandating abortion doctors have admitting privileges at local hospitals.
Meanwhile, the abortion battle has gone digital as more states ban abortions by telemedicine.
Read the full Baptist Press article here. Christianity Today (CT) has previously reported on abortion clinic restrictions and legislation restricting abortion. CT also covered pro-life groups exposing abortion practices and how pro-lifers are winning the abortion battle.
H/t FOTM’s Mike
Dr. Eowyn is the Editor of Fellowship of the Minds and a regular contributor to The D.C. Clothesline.