Rather than focus on passing laws, Gushee conveyed an alternative approach: He urged pro-lifers to study data on why women seek abortions and to systematically address those factors. This approach recognizes that the right to life and the right to choose are not antithetical. In fact, they’re aligned to the extent that women don’t like abortions. Help women avoid pregnancies they don’t want, and you’ll wipe out the vast majority of abortions without having to enact a single restriction.
I don’t expect pro-lifers to stop fighting for restrictions. But I did notice some of them—notably, Helen Alvare, the former spokeswoman for the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops—using the term “pro-life” to describe the broad spectrum of Americans who are morally but often not legally opposed to abortion. If you’re going to claim these people as part of a pro-life majority, represent them. Pursue a culture of life, not a legal regime.