A coalition of pro-life advocacy organizations is sponsoring billboards promoting chastity in response to California Gov. Gavin Newsom’s advertising effort to promote his state as an abortion sanctuary in states that ban or severely restrict abortion.
In a statement released Wednesday, the Life Legal Defense Foundation announced that the Coalition for an Abortion-Free Future is posting billboards promoting chastity in the exact locations where Newsom's election campaign posted pro-abortion billboards.
“Save sex for marriage. Plan your future. Not your abortion,” one billboard reads.
The billboard includes a picture of a young woman looking at the results of a pregnancy test as a young man sitting beside her, presumably her boyfriend, puts his fingers over his eyes as an indication of stress due to the positive pregnancy test result.
The billboard also contains statistics suggesting that “over 85% of abortions are performed on unmarried women” and encourages passersby to “learn more at abortionlessfuture.com.” Data from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention collected in 2020 shows that 86.3% of abortions are performed on unmarried women.
The Coalition for an Abortion-Free Future, which describes itself as a group of “national pro-life organizations committed to saving children in the womb and ending abortion,” noted that one of the billboards is located in Columbus, Ohio.
“If men and women stopped having sex outside of relationships truly committed to protecting the lives of the babies they create, the demand for abortion would largely disappear,” the announcement predicted. “Pro-life resources could then focus on helping families welcome their unexpected additions.”
The coalition's spokesperson Mark Harrington said in a statement that the billboards seek to remind people "of the inconvenient truth that the main driver of abortion is irresponsible sexual activity.”
“We need to have a conversation in this country — including in the pro-life movement — about the true cause of most abortions,” Harrington said.
Newsom, a Democrat, launched the billboard campaign last September to promote California as a destination for women seeking abortions in states that have issued total or near-total bans on abortion following the U.S. Supreme Court’s June decision determining that the U.S. Constitution does not confer a right to abortion.
One billboard in Mississippi sparked outrage for including a Bible verse at the bottom.
The Mississippi billboard quotes Mark 12:31, proclaiming, “Love your neighbor as yourself. There is no greater commandment than these.” The larger text above the Scripture passage reads, “Need an abortion? California is ready to help.” The billboard directs women to abortion.ca.gov, a $1 million state-run website promoting the state as a destination for women unable to obtain abortions in other states.
Unlike the states where Newsom’s re-election campaign posted the pro-abortion billboards, specifically Indiana, Mississippi, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Carolina, South Dakota and Texas, California has codified the right to abortion into state law.
In addition to re-electing Newsom on Nov. 8, California voters approved Proposition 1, which amends the state’s constitution to guarantee a right to “reproductive freedom” in the form of abortion and contraception.
A database compiled by the pro-life advocacy organization Susan B. Anthony Pro-Life America reveals that following the Dobbs decision, 13 states have total or near-total bans on abortion in effect, including four of the seven states where Newsom's campaign posted billboards.
Pro-life laws in Indiana and Ohio are currently entangled in legal challenges while the South Carolina Supreme Court permanently struck down the state’s ban on abortions after six weeks gestation last week.
According to the Guttmacher Institute, a pro-abortion advocacy organization that once served as the research arm of Planned Parenthood, California is one of three states with a constitution that explicitly contains a right to abortion. The state is one of 16 that protects the right to abortion in state law.
Ryan Foley is a reporter for The Christian Post. He can be reached at: email@example.com