LOS ANGELES (Dec. 3)
The 200,000-member Women’s League for Conservative Judaism placed itself squarely in the pro-choice camp on the abortion issue, at the opening of its three-day national conference and open board meeting here Sunday.
At the same time, it rejected the casual use of abortion as a birth control device, stressing that Judaism cherishes the sanctity of life, even potential life.
Several other Jewish women’s groups have come out in favor of a woman’s freedom to choose abortion, including the National Federation of Temple Sisterhoods, the women’s congregational arm of the Reform movement.
Evelyn Auerbach, president of the Women’s League, said it would act in cooperation with the other main organizations of Conservative Judaism, the Rabbinical Assembly and the United Synagogue of America, to mobilize the movement’s 1.5 million members against any further erosion of Roe vs. Wade, the 1973 Supreme Court ruling affirming a women’s right to have an abortion.
“Women must have the ability to make their own determination regarding abortion, without the interference of legislators or jurists,” Auerbach declared.
She criticized President Bush for his veto of the recent congressional bill that would have funded abortions for impoverished victims of incest or rape.
She urged Bush to demonstrate that he represents “all of the people, not just special interest groups” by reversing that veto.
About 400 Women’s League delegates are here to develop programs that will address problems of ecology, crime, drugs and illiteracy.