(Photo: AP Photo / Dave Martin)
She thinks the government has no right to tell a woman whether she can have an abortion or not. But this pro-choice sports columnist also thinks that the group NOW is not right in trying to pull the pro-life Tim Tebow ad from airing during the Super Bowl.
“I’ll spit this out quick, before the armies of feminism try to gag me and strap electrodes to my forehead: Tim Tebow is one of the better things to happen to young women in some time,” quips Sally Jenkins in a Washington Post column entitled, “Tebow’s Super Bowl ad isn’t intolerant; its critics are.”
Jenkins pointed out that the public is always calling on athletes to be more responsible and to care about social issues, but when star college quarterback Tebow and his mother Pam try to tell their “genuine pro-choice story,” the group National Organization for Women goes on the attack. NOW’s criticism, Jenkins says, reveals that the group is not pro-choice but rather pro-abortion.
“Apparently NOW feels this commercial (featuring Tebow) is an inappropriate message for America to see for 30 seconds, but women in bikinis selling beer is the right one,” Jenkins writes.
Last month, Focus on the Family announced it would broadcast its first Super Bowl ad this year that will feature Tim and Pam Tebow. During the 30-second spot, the Tebows will share a personal story centered on the theme of “Celebrate Family, Celebrate Life.”
Though the exact content of the ad has not yet been revealed, many speculate the ad will recount Pam Tebow’s refusal to have an abortion while she was pregnant with Tim despite having suffered from a life-threatening infection at the time. Doctors had told her that continuing the pregnancy could be dangerous to her health, but “she exercised her freedom of choice” and gave birth to Tim.
“[N]ow, 20-some years later, the outcome of that choice is her beauteous Heisman Trophy winner son, a chaste, proselytizing evangelical,” Jenkins writes.
While pro-choice and pro-life advocates may differ on whether there should be a legal ban on abortion, both camps can agree that abortion is undesirable and a reduction of the number of procedures is a good thing.
“Here’s what we do need a lot more of: Tebows,” the sports columnist states.
Jenkins went on to say there is a need for collegians who are “selfless enough” to spend their summers helping needy children in impoverished countries, athletes who “believe in something other than themselves” and live out their beliefs, and celebrities who send a message other than materialism.
“You know what we really need more of? Famous guys who aren’t embarrassed to practice sexual restraint, and to say it out loud,” Jenkins writes, referring to how Tebow said he is saving himself for marriage. “If we had more of those, women might have fewer abortions.”
Jenkins concluded by saying though she “couldn’t disagree with Tebow more” about the government’s role in a woman’s decision to have an abortion, she thinks he has a right to express his beliefs in public.
“If the pro-choice stance is so precarious that a story about someone who chose to carry a risky pregnancy to term undermines it, then CBS is not the problem,” Jenkins writes.
This year’s Super Bowl, which pits the Indianapolis Colts against the New Orleans Saints, will kick off at 6 p.m. ET on Sunday, Feb. 7.
Super Bowl broadcasts are typically viewed by over 90 million people each year.