Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin’s frank, poignant speech at an Indiana pro-life dinner Thursday carried a message in line with her view that abortion should be illegal except to save the life of the mother. Palin revealed that she had fleeting thoughts of having an abortion — “of trying to change the circumstances” and “make it all go away,” as she put it — when she learned she would give birth at 44 and later that her baby would have Down syndrome.
But, argues Washington Post columnist Ruth Marcus, Palin ended up underscoring the value of choice to each pregnant woman. Marcus wrote that “for the crowd listening to her at last week’s dinner, Palin’s disclosure served the comfortable role of moral reinforcement: She wavered in her faith, was tempted to sin, regained her strength and emerged better for it. As for those us less certain that we know, or are equipped to instruct others, when life begins and when it is permissible to terminate a pregnancy, Palin’s speech offered a different lesson: Abortion is a personal issue and a personal choice. The government has no business taking that difficult decision away from those who must live with the consequences.”
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