Saturday, December 7, 2013

Some “Obsession” required: Hispanic abortion rate shows more episcopal leadership needed

On September 19, 2013, the New York Times reported that Pope Francis, the first Hispanic Pope, had said “that the church had grown 'obsessed' with abortion.” On December 4, 2013 Life News reported on the latest abortion statistics from the Center for Disease Control. The article began with “good” news—3% fewer children were killed in 2010 than were in 2009, but noted the astronomical rates in the Black and Hispanic communities:

"The new report from the Centers for Disease Control had good numbers across the nation when it came to abortion — with abortions declining three percent in 2010 after a five percent decrease in 2009. But they also contained shocking figures showing abortion targets blacks and Hispanics.

The CDC Abortion Surveillance Report dated November 29, 2013 reveals that in 2010, 56.7% of abortions reported to the CDC nationwide were done on Hispanic and Black women.

According to the report, there were 415,479 abortions for known ethnicity reported for selected states in 2010 and 153,045 (or 36.8 percent) were non-Hispanic white babies, 148,261 (or 35.7 percent) were non-Hispanic black babies, 87,240 (or 21.0 percent) were Hispanic babies, and 26,933 (or 6.5 percent) were babies of other races or ethnicities.”

According to the 2010 census, Hispanics comprise 16.3% of the U.S. population. The 21% of US abortions that are Hispanic babies thus significantly exceeds the Hispanic percentage of the population. Since most Hispanics identify as Catholic, this indicates a serious lack of catechesis. In the African-American community, which has been targeted by Planned Parenthood from that organization’s beginning, Protestant clergy such as California’s own Pastor Walter Hoye and the Reverend Clenard Childress of New Jersey have devoted their lives to fighting the nightmarish rate of black abortion. As the same trends are now afflicting the Hispanic communities, equivalent leadership in that community is needed.

One does not need to look far to see Hispanic Catholic clergy whose available resources (except for courage and determination) dwarf those of men like Hoye and Childress. I refer to the Hispanic Bishops. In California such men include the newly-elected leader of the California Catholic Conference, Bishop Jaime Soto of Sacramento; Bishop Rutilio del Riego of San Bernardino; and above all, Archbishop Jose Gomez of Los Angeles, by far the largest Catholic Archdiocese in the country. There is no question about these Bishops’ pro-life beliefs: they have led pro-life vigils, attended 40 Days For Life events, and del Riego and Soto have been annual attendees at San Francisco’s Walk for Life West Coast. But as the numbers of Hispanic babies being killed shows, a far more systematic, day-to-day, and inflexible approach is needed, and needed now. Planned Parenthood, for one, is not waiting. According to the U.S. Census, San Francisco's population in 1990 was 10.9% African Americans and 13.3% Hispanic. By 2010 those numbers had shifted to 6.1% African American and 15.1% Hispanic. In 2011 Planned Parenthood Golden closed their abortion business on Eddy Street, right on the edge of one of the largest concentration of African Americans in the city and re-opened on Valencia Street, right on the edge of the largest concentration of Hispanics in the city.

“Obsession” over abortion is mandatory. If one accepts the Catholic teaching that murder is wrong, coupled with the scientific fact that each human life begins at conception, to not be “obsessed” at legal abortion is to be irrational, immoral, and anti-Christian.

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