I’ll say from the outset that, to me, parental notification laws are a no-brainer. You just can’t (or shouldn’t be able to) perform any sort of medical procedure on a minor without parental approval.

That said, we do know there are parents who withhold needful medical procedures from their kids for all sorts of reasons, including some pretty bad and misguided ones. I’d say parents are on the hook morally and legally for them. I suppose the authentic libertarian position is that if you’re a kid old enough to sneak out of the house and get to the doctor on your own, you can pretty much do as you wish.

CNS picks up on a third initiative in California that seems to have slid back in the last incarnation from the first. I wonder what the statistics are on abortion rates when parents know and when parents don’t. Given the overall acceptance of the procedure in society today, are parents likely to raise or lower the abortion rate if they are notified? Anybody aware of any study done on this?

If parents tend to raise the abortion rate, is this really a pro-life fight? Or is this one of those holdovers from the 70’s that people keep plugging away on, regardless of how it makes sense today?

(image credit Sheryl Nields, EW)

About catholicsensibility

Todd lives in Minnesota, serving a Catholic parish as a lay minister.
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