The Unsung Death of ‘My Body, My Choice’

As late as 3:43 p.m. on Thursday, September 9, the long-lived mantra of the pro-abortion movement, “My Body, My Choice,” was still showing signs of life. It was at that time, that the White House published the remarks made by Vice-President Kamala Harris at a “Reproductive Rights” roundtable.

“The President and I are unequivocal in our support of Roe v. Wade and the constitutionality of Roe v. Wade, and the right of women to make decisions for themselves with whomever they choose — about their own bodies,” said Ms. Harris.

“And, needless to say,” Harris continued much too quotably, “the right of women to make decisions about their own bodies is not negotiable. The right of women to make decisions about their own bodies is their decision; it is their body.”

So far is Harris out of the White House power loop that she may not have known the mantra had less than two hours to live. 

Although clearly on the defensive, Harris was targeting the wrong enemy at the White House roundtable. She thought the threat to “My Body, My Choice” came from those rascally Republicans in Texas that had passed the Texas Heartbeat Act. Despite legal challenges, the new law had gone into effect just a week earlier. Attempts to challenge the terminology of the “heartbeat” bills inevitably reinforced just whose body was being violated, namely the baby with the beating heart. And unlike other heartbeat states, say, Mississippi or North Dakota, Texas was too big to boycott.

In a jam, the abortion rights crowd turned to Harris. As attorney general of California, she had proved her killer instinct. When undercover journalist David Daleiden recorded Planned Parenthood’s traffic in baby body parts—and even Hillary Clinton conceded his videos were “disturbing”—Harris had Daleiden arrested and silenced. End of threat.

Not one to be silenced herself, Harris cut off Mike Pence in the 2020 vice-presidential debate, saying, “I’m speaking.” This was apparently a milestone moment in feminist history. NARAL Pro-Choice America now asks its followers to “show your support of our first woman VP and her support for reproductive freedom” by buying for just $10—marked down from $15—an “’I'm Speaking’ VP Kamala Harris Quote Face Mask.”

At the Reproductive Rights roundtable, Harris was trying to shore up one of the principal lies abortion activists have used to sustain their movement, namely that their political opponents hope to restrict what women do to their own bodies or, by extension, what they do in their own bedrooms. Of course, this is nonsense, but as Nazi propagandist Joseph Goebbels is reported to have said, “If you tell a lie big enough and keep repeating it, people will eventually come to believe it.”

The propagandists at NARAL seem to be reading out of the Goebbels playbook. Unwilling to say out loud what they hope to accomplish—the right to kill unborn babies—they cloak everything they say in euphemism, including the very name of the organization.

The “NARAL” acronym covers a lot of sins. The group started as the Association to Repeal Abortion Laws then morphed successively into the National Association for the Repeal of Abortion Laws, the National Abortion Rights Action League, and, later, the National Abortion and Reproductive Rights Action League. The problem with all these names was the word “abortion.” It was too specific, too honest, too ugly.

Finally, to sustain the brand, the group kept the acronym “NARAL,” added the subtitle, “Pro-Choice America,” and ditched all references to abortion. In fact, the website is now just To the uninitiated, the home page would seem a tribute to constitutional liberty. NARAL is famously “pro-choice.” It believes in “reproductive rights” and “reproductive freedom.”  It boldly declares that “Freedom is for EVERYBODY” and demands “Bans Off Our Bodies.”

In the real world, of course, conservatives have no particular interest in what women do with their bodies and have never challenged a woman’s freedom to reproduce. No, it was Planned Parenthood founder Margaret Sanger and her fellow progressives who wanted to limit reproductive freedom. “Possibly drastic and Spartan methods may be forced upon American society,” wrote Sanger in 1922, “if it continues complacently to encourage the chance and chaotic breeding that has resulted from our stupid, cruel sentimentalism.”

On the same Thursday Harris was endorsing “My Body, My Choice,” Biden was endorsing “drastic and Spartan methods.”  Death came suddenly to the old mantra, if not unexpectedly. Just 79 minutes after Harris breathed new life into it, President Joe Biden put the mantra out of its misery. Biden told America in no uncertain terms that the right of women to make decisions about their own bodies is his, not theirs. Going forward the new understanding is, “Your Body, My Choice.”

“As your President, I’m announcing tonight a new plan to require more Americans to be vaccinated, to combat those blocking public health,” said the president. “This is not about freedom or personal choice.” That much was obvious. The president’s mandate, by his own estimate, would affect two-thirds of all workers or about 100 million Americans, nearly half of them female. And except perhaps for those women working for the Post Office, there was nothing “negotiable” about this assault on their bodily integrity.

Scarier still, Biden was not talking in euphemism. He was actually talking to women about “their” bodies. Not surprisingly, NARAL remains stone silent, and Harris is not “speaking here.” It is hard to defend a con, even a venerable one like “My Body, My Choice.” Meanwhile, real freedom lovers have mischievously adopted the abortion rights credo as their own, and leftists fume in dismay, having been cruelly hoisted on their own petards.

Photo credit: James McNellis CC BY 2.0 license

Jack Cashill’s latest book, Barack Obama’s Promised Land: Deplorables Need Not Apply, is now widely available. See for more information.

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