In the UK, abortion isn’t such a hot issue as it is here in the US. I think in the UK abortion is seen as just one of many wrongs, such as gambling, abuse, pornography, alcoholism, materialism to name but a tiny few, we Christians would like to see less of. We don’t single it out for special treatment like done so in America.
We are also much more opposed to the idea that prohibiting people from doing something is the best way to solve a problem. The only solution evangelical Americans seem to offer to the issue of abortion is to ban it. This seems to be the most antagonistic response possible, but I think the attitude in the UK is to offer a much more holistic solution. If we can reach people with the gospel, if we can offer them hope, then all sins, including that of abortion, will be reduced. Of course this is much harder, takes generations, but will radically renew society with the Kingdom of God.
I have come to see the approach that Evangelical Americans have to abortion, to ban it and oppose every facility, is really the lazy option. It is like teaching a child to play nicely with her brother by taking their toys away so they won’t argue about them anymore. It doesn’t get to the root cause of the argument. Similarly, if American Evangelicals want people to stop having abortions they need to help them, and teach them the hope they can have and to value life. Evangelicals need to take the long road, invest in other people’s lives and stop living in their Christian ghettos (see Better Late Than Never).
The feminism movement in the US has become synonymous with fighting for abortion rights. It doesn’t have to be this way, there are many feminist causes that Evangelicals could back that may help to limit abortion. For instance Maternity Pay and Maternity Leave (both of which are standard in the UK) should be championed by Evangelicals (churches need to lead by example by offering these) and will encourage women to keep their babies and not abort them.
There are other solutions worth looking at too. The link with abortion and profit has to be broken, in a radical move I’d like to suggest that abortions are made free and centrally funded. If an abortion facility knows it can not make money from performing abortions it will stop marketing them and contraceptives will become the preferred option.
In short Evangelicals in the USA need to stop taking the easy option of protesting; they need to engage with the communities they are in and bring light and hope so that abortion is eliminated because no one wants one anymore. Simply protesting against abortion and calling for it to be banned is the lazy choice.