A YouTube video recently surfaced in which Arizona Democratic gubernatorial candidate David Garcia responds to a question about parental consent and his belief that girls as young as 13 and 14 years of age should be able to get an abortion without their parents’ permission. The comments raise many thought-provoking questions about the laws that are currently in place and the role of parents and the state in determining the autonomy of an adolescent.
Significantly, they bring to the surface the undeniable reality that when it comes to abortion, some advocates of the ghastly procedure are perfectly fine with a child’s autonomy vis a vis their parents when it comes to taking the life of the unborn.
The released audio has a man answering a question about minors being able to have an abortion without parental consent. The audio appears to have been edited, so the comments may be incomplete. However, Ian Danley, Garcia’s campaign manager, seemed to acknowledge the recording was indeed the voice of his candidate as he took to Twitter to defend “David’s” comments as “thoughtful.”
Danley characterized Gov. Doug Ducey’s stance on abortion as extreme, since it aligns ideologically with the Center for Arizona Policy, or CAP, while touting the more “thoughtful” statements of Garcia, and aligning his position with Planned Parenthood. I reached out to the Garcia camp for a statement, but received no response as of this writing.
Let us assume, for a moment, that the voice on the recording isn’t Garcia, and see just how thoughtful the position really is for its own sake.
We start with current state law. Since 2001, A.R.S. § 36-2152 prohibits any physician from performing an abortion on an unemancipated minor without the written consent of one of the minor’s parents, guardian or conservator. However, it also provides for a judge of the Superior Court to authorize a physician to perform the abortion pursuant to prescribed procedures. Yes, state law allows a judge to decide if a baby can be killed, but only “exceptional” circumstances — whatever those are.
In other words, this medical procedure, which ends the life of an unborn child, has a way around parental consent built into it. The Center for Arizona Policy helped sponsor this bill. That hardly seems extreme; it is the definition of compromise. However, the bill does emphasize the need for parental consent. If you look at the CAP website, and its history, it wants even more parental control and input when it comes to their adolescent children. This doesn’t seem extreme either. It is entirely in keeping with natural order.
If one looks at Planned Parenthood’s website on the same subject, you will see that the minor who may be seeking an abortion is directed to the parental end-around immediately! They are given the ins and outs of sitting down with a judge to gain approval without the need for parental involvement. Parental authorization isn’t even suggested unless the judge decides not to allow the minor to proceed with the abortion. It only comes up after explaining that an appeal of the initial judge’s decision can be made. Only then is the potential abortion seeker directed to talk to their parents!
Cutting parents entirely out of a procedure that will have lasting physical and psychological effects? Now that’s extreme.
Politicians who support abortion for minors often claim they only have the best interest of the young girls in mind and thus wrap their extremism in declarations of thoughtful discussion. However, such affirmations do not change the fact that their “thoughtfulness” is an intellectually dishonest cop-out that makes the already awful situation of a child being pregnant that much worse by encouraging and promoting distrust among the child and their parents while simultaneously advocating for the death of the grandchild.