Senator Obama made this statement in response to a question at a townhall meeting in Pennsylvania this past weekend:
Look, I got two daughters — 9 years old and 6 years old," he said. "I am going to teach them first about values and morals, but if they make a mistake, I don't want them punished with a baby. I don't want them punished with an STD at age 16, so it doesn't make sense to not give them information.
How does someone's value for a baby, the natural and predictable possibility of sex, become so casual that, even offhandedly, a baby can be described as a punishment rather than a precious life? Shouldn't we encourage our daughters, if they should become pregnant out of wedlock, that they can actually do a wonderful thing in giving life to the baby and a blessing to a couple who can't have children otherwise because that life is precious? A baby, the child, is never a punishment. It may be a consequence. But it demeans that life to call the baby a punishment that should be dodged by abortion. A punishment can be avoided by getting rid of the baby because it has no value. It's more important to avoid punishment than to value the baby's life.
One of the most insidious affects on our attitudes of legalized abortion is separating sex and pregnancy in our minds. Senator Obama's comment reflects the idea that sex is purely a recreation that can be indulged in with no consequences. While recreation is a wonderful purpose of sex, sex is also inextricably linked directly to pregnancy and parenthood. But birth control and the sexual revolution have led us to believe that a baby isn't the natural consequence of sex. Thus, a baby becomes a punishment for a recreational activity.
Abortion influences our value for life. And this is a logical result. You can't value the human life of a baby as an objective fact to be respected and call it a punishment. I'm suspicious of any claims to value a baby, but still support abortion rights for whatever reason when a baby can be called a punishment.