Can you be both pro-life and pro-woman?

Can women stand against abortion and still call  themselves feminists? This is a question that has arisen before, but it is being brought to the surface again because of this Saturday’s Women’s March on Washington.

Even though they formerly were officially partnered with the march, New Wave Feminism has been officially removed as a partner just four days before the march.   The Women’s March official statement apologized for the mistake of including an “anti-choice” group in their march organization.

The Women’s March has established themselves on a platform that fights for a woman’s right to abortion.  New Wave Feminism has said they are unapologetically pro-life.

New Wave Feminism recently wrote on their blog:

When I imagine what the world would look like if our fertility were treated as the super power it is, and the life of the unborn human given the respect it deserves, I see a place that’s a whole hell of a lot more pro-woman than what we have now.

To break down the situation, women are telling women “You can’t march alongside me! You don’t stand for women because you want rights for all women! This march is inherently grounded in the fact that we stand for the right to abortion for women outside the womb at the expense of women and children inside the womb.”

Which begs the question – can you be pro-life and a feminist?

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What does the term ‘feminist’ mean?

Is there a set definition of the word, or has it succumb to the increasingly murky waters of relativism, where I define my own kind of feminism, which can differ from your type of feminism?

My undergraduate minor is in women and gender studies, which by no means makes me an expert on women or gender.  But the question on the label of feminism is something that I’ve wrestled with quite a bit during my time in the minor program and after graduation as well.

Watch this post for for updates as the story, as well as my thoughts on the subject of Catholic feminism, take shape.


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