Human Exceptionalism

Life and dignity with Wesley J. Smith.

Teen Sues Parents to Prevent Forced Abortion


Pregnant teenagers, not a good thing. Usually, stories involving children who get pregnant involve the girls obtaining wanted abortions over the objections, or without the knowledge, of parents. But in Texas, a pregnant teenage girl is suing her parents to prevent them from forcing her to have an abortion. From the Court House News Service story:

HOUSTON (CN) – A 16-year-old sued her parents, claiming they are trying “to coerce her to have an abortion.”  R.E.K. sued her parents, Jeffrey Koen and Denise Watts Koen, in Harris County Court.  ”R.E.K., plaintiff, is a 16-year-old girl, who is nine (9) weeks pregnant,” the complaint states. “She does not want an abortion but her mother and father are attempting to coerce her to have an abortion.”   R.E.K. says she lived with the baby’s father, her 16-year-old boyfriend, and his parents, for some time “because her mother routinely does not supervise her, frequently spending her evenings at a local bar, and R.E.K. avoided her father’s presence because of his tendency towards physical violence, which she has observed on multiple occasions.”

Teen pregnancies don’t “just happen,” do they? 

The pressure allegedly got intense, including threats of violence and continual pressure and coercion. And what does the girl want from the court?

R.E.K. seeks an injunction to stop her parents from forcing her to have an abortion, and a declaration that “she has the right, under federal constitutional law, to make her own reproductive decisions, including the decision to carry her child to term and give birth.”

That is the law, it seems to me.

This is a terrible situation, no doubt about it. But regardless of one’s position on the legality of abortion–and certainly teenage parenthood is a daunting thing–at least we can all agree that this girl should not be forced into having her unborn child killed. Right? I mean, “choice” and all that, right?  Right? Right?


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