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Ross Douthat on the Shortage of White Babies

Why oh why can't we have a better press corps?

Ross Douthat of the New York Times:

The Unborn Paradox: In every era, there’s been a tragic contrast between the burden of unwanted pregnancies and the burden of infertility. But this gap used to be bridged by adoption far more frequently than it is today. Prior to 1973, 20 percent of births to white, unmarried women (and 9 percent of unwed births over all) led to an adoption. Today, just 1 percent of babies born to unwed mothers are adopted, and would-be adoptive parents face a waiting list that has lengthened beyond reason...

Amanda Marcotte:

pandagon.net: Ross Douthat proves once again why the NY Times was foolish to hire him.... Douthat... is pushing [the line] that the sadness and doubt felt by some of the young women [deciding to abort] indicates they should have been forced by law to have babies they didn’t want, that contraception is evil because people didn’t even consider f---ing before it was invented, and that MTV is biased because they present facts and allow women to speak for themselves. He does not, sadly, engage in the conspiracy theory about how MTV was paid off by the shadowy condom industry....

Douthat... can’t even bring himself to feign concern for more than a paragraph before he lapses into straight up demanding that women be reduced to breeding machines....  We cannot afford to treat women as human beings when the supply of white infants on the market is so dangerously low!...

There’s a lot of human rights violations that Douthat glossed over in his chillingly inhumane euphemistic phrasing “this gap used to be bridged by adoption”.  By “bridged by adoption”, what he means is young white women (and some young black women, though there was less demand for their babies, and subsequently less forcing them into maternity homes) who turned up pregnant were forced to give birth to babies and forced into maternity homes... so they couldn’t resist when their babies were snatched from them against their wills. He’s right that Roe v. Wade had a lot to do with turning this around, and it’s not just because women had an option to abort instead.  It’s also because once it was enshrined in law that even pregnant women have rights, it became harder to justify the existence of maternity homes and coercing women to give up babies....

Look, I really feel bad for people suffering infertility.  It can be maddening and horrible, though I will point out that the notion that people resort to infertility treatments after adoption doesn’t pan out has it exactly backwards---most people prefer biological children and then turn to adoption if they can’t have their own.  And some women willingly give babies up for adoption.  But the fact that, as Douthat notes, the percentage of babies born that are given up for adoption immediately went into freefall after coercion stopped means that the coercion really was pretty f---ing coercive...

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