Abortion and Children’s Books

This week a friend of mine posted a link on Facebook which might be the most disturbing thing I’ve ever seen on the social media site: an article regarding a children’s book about abortion. The book itself, called “Sister Apple, Sister Pig,” can be found online here.

I find it difficult to even know where to begin this post. While the book does not outright say that abortion is a good thing, it seems to promote the idea that abortion is no big deal. The child in the book is attempting to understand what it means that you had a sister who was aborted before he was born. He has questions, but ultimately decided his sister is a “happy ghost.” He treats her as an invisible friend and his parents are content to let him do so.

What is most disturbing about this book is that it is not satirical in the least and is aimed directly toward children. It is propaganda that seeks to indoctrinate children on a complex issue. While it can be argued that parenting is essentially all indoctrination and that this book is no more akin to brainwashing than the Bible, it should still give people of all walks of life pause because it is making a serious statement about the value of human life.

There are something things that are (generally) harmless to teach children, regardless of their veracity: the existence of Santa Claus or the Tooth Fairy, that all dogs go to heaven, or that yelling is a bad thing. I believe that this book, however, crosses a line because the implications of its teaching could have serious negative repercussions. What do you think? Is it dangerous or prudent to expose children to this kind of book?


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Mark McQuain
Mark McQuain
5 years ago

I have read a portion of the book and I cannot imagine a context in which the remainder of the book should be used to educate children. While you are correct that the book does not outright state that abortion is a good thing, the child’s Papa, commenting on three-year-old Lee’s list of problems Lee perceived would have happened had the aborted sister lived, tells Lee: “[Y]ou have some good reasons to not have a sister right here right now. Maybe you will have another sister when there is more time, and there is more money.” Lee’s precocious utilitarian rationalization supporting the abortion is praised.

For the adults in the room, it is surprising that Lee’s parents don’t deny that the fetus was alive and is now dead as a result of the abortion. She was Lee’s human sister. Lee says: “…she briefly lived in Mama…She lived before me, but Mama couldn’t keep her. Mama says she is a ghost.” We are no longer arguing that the aborted sister was neither human nor alive. We are desiring to teach young children that there are good reasons to kill small human babies in the womb.

I vote dangerous.

Jon Holmlund
Jon Holmlund
5 years ago

I agree with Mark and Sarah. This country crossed a big line when we made deliberate killing a public good. And, at the risk of sounding like a cantankerous old man, it is increasingly clear that the state is pressing hard to control what children are told.