Reports are that San Francisco is the latest city looking to force pro-life pregnancy centers to state that they don’t provide or refer for abortions. And that just underscores the fact that the lifesaving work of pregnancy centers is giving abortion proponents an extreme case of heartburn that they will do anything to try to stop.
City Supervisor Malia Cohen told the San Francisco Chronicle that she was working with NARAL Pro-Choice California to draft legislation that would require centers to post a sign in their waiting room indicating whether they provide or refer for abortions. Such forced speech requirements in Baltimore and Montgomery County, Maryland have been struck down in lower federal court as violations of the free speech rights of pregnancy centers. Americans United for Life recently filed an amicus brief in Greater Baltimore Center for Pregnancy Concerns v. Mayor and City Council of Baltimore, a case now before the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals, arguing that the abortion industry has “no legitimate reason—let alone a compelling one—to restrict the free speech of PCCs in Baltimore.”
NARAL has been promoting such legislation across the country for several years. While they have only been successful in a few circumstances, every one of their “successes” that we’ve challenged in court so far have been ruled to be unconstitutional. It seems pretty certain that they all will end up being tossed by the courts eventually.
Yet San Francisco continues heading down this path – one intended to increase the number of lives lost through abortion. The biggest reason they will ultimately fail is because they are on the wrong side of history. The American public simply doesn’t support restricting the freedom of pregnancy centers to reach out and help pregnant women in need.
And this time, even the courts agree with us.