Objecting to the passage of a sweeping pro-life bill in Georgia, actress Alyssa Milano recently took to Twitter to urge women to stop having sex until “we get bodily autonomy back.”
“Our reproductive rights are being erased,” she tweeted May 10. “Until women have legal control over our own bodies we just cannot risk pregnancy. JOIN ME by not having sex until we get bodily autonomy back.”
Milano’s #SexStrike has received an overwhelming number of responses, including many who drew attention to the irony of her protest: an acknowledgment that there are consequences that come with sex.
While Milano focused on denying sex for men — including male lawmakers who have passed pro-life legislation — pro-life leaders have cheerfully pointed out that yes, sex can result in a pregnancy. And if you’re not ready for parenthood, abstinence is the only responsible choice.
“On this Mother’s Day, I am in FULL support of pro-abortion women going on a sex strike. Sounds great for our movement and significantly damaging to the abortion industry. Thanks, @Alyssa_Milano!!” tweeted Abby Johnson, a former Planned Parenthood manager turned pro-life advocate.
The issue highlights Catholic teaching that sexuality is a gift that is appropriate only within marriage. When sexuality is misused, the consequences are harmful not only to individuals but society as a whole.
Abortion is the result of sex without consequences.
In his prophetic encyclical “Humanae Vitae,” Pope Paul VI wrote that “the fundamental nature of the marriage act, while uniting husband and wife in the closest intimacy, also renders them capable of generating new life — and this as a result of laws written into the actual nature of man and of woman. And if each of these essential qualities, the unitive and the procreative, is preserved, the use of marriage fully retains its sense of true mutual love and its ordination to the supreme responsibility of parenthood to which man is called.”
This conversation is an opportunity to call for a restoration of human sexuality by refusing to separate it from marriage or procreation and promoting openness to new human life.
In a way unbeknownst to her, Alyssa Milano got it right. If you’re not going to be open to life, don’t have sex.