Abortion Adding to Demographic Collapse of France

France, a nation facing demographic catastrophe, just vote to make things even worse. Last week, the French Parliament voted overwhelmingly to add a “right” to abortion to the nation’s Constitution—becoming the first nation in the world to take this radical step.

France recently announced that the number of births in the nation has dropped to the lowest level since World War II. In 2023, less than 700,000 births were recorded in the country, a drop of 20% since 2010, and a number that hadn’t been seen since 1944.

With an overall fertility rate of 1.68 children born per woman, France’s fertility rate is higher than many European countries, but far below the replacement fertility rate of 2.1. If you strip out the relatively high birthrate of many of the Arab and African immigrants, the actual birth rate for indigenous French women is way lower than the overall figure. The native French are vanishing!

So significant is the recent drop in fertility, that French President Emmanuel Macron recently urged the country to prioritize what he called “demographic rearmament.”

Even the liberal president has aid that France needs to tackle the issue, proposing increasing parental leave and combating infertility, which he called “the taboo of the century.”

And yet, at the very same time, French parliamentarians voted by a staggering 780-72 majority to commit the nation’s Constitution to protecting the murder of preborn human beings. When the result was revealed, lawmakers and observers leapt to their feet for a standing ovation.

It is difficult to watch the video of the vote without feeling sick to one’s stomach. Lawmakers and pro-abortion activists shed tears of joy after voting to utterly pervert the purpose of a political Constitution, proactively excluding the weakest and most vulnerable human beings from all protection in law.

President Macron, who had just weeks earlier been lamenting the country’s low birth rate, was responsible for putting forward the Constitutional amendment, and urging parliamentarians to approve it. Macron celebrated and took personal credit for the vote, saying that it expressed “French pride” and sent a “universal message.”

“The Senate has taken a decisive step, which I applaud,” Macron said in a statement. “I pledged to make women’s freedom to have recourse to abortion irreversible by enshrining it in the Constitution.”

Prior to the vote, the Vatican’s Pontifical Academy for Life (PAV) put out an appeal, urging French lawmakers to vote against the horrific Constitutional amendment.

In its statement, the PAV noted that, “there can be no ‘right’ to suppress a human life.” The authors of the text urged all governments and people of all faiths to work so that “the protection of life becomes an absolute priority.”

The statement also noted that, “The protection of human life is the first goal of humanity and can only develop in a world free of conflict and divisions, with science, technology, and industry serving the human person and fraternity.”

The statement quoted Pope Francis, who said that opposing abortion is not something that should be the purview only of Christians. “[T]o defend life is not an ideology,” the Holy Father noted. “It is a reality; a human reality which involves all Christians, precisely because they are Christian and because they are human.”

After the vote, the French Bishops’ Conference put out a statement, calling for fasting and prayer.

“As Catholics, we must continue to serve life from conception to death,” the bishops wrote, “to be artisans of respect for every human being, which is always a gift given to all others, and to support those who choose to keep their child even in difficult circumstances.”

“Let us pray that our fellow citizens will rediscover the taste for life, for giving it, for receiving it, for accompanying it, for having and raising children,” the bishops concluded.

As Archbishop Olivier de Germay of Lyon put it in a statement after the vote, France put “the equal dignity of all human life — a principle with constitutional value — and freedom of access to abortion on the same level. How to explain such a contradiction?”

If President Macron wonders in future years why France’s birth rate continues to plummet, as it is likely to do, he need only look in the mirror to know the cause.

This is the madness of the culture of death. It devours itself and everything it encounters, and even in devouring itself and others it waxes eloquent with lofty language about how it is defending “rights” and promoting “freedom.”

A nation is dying, and the president of that country expresses alarm that the nation is dying, and yet he nevertheless proposes and celebrates a measure that elevates one of the core evils that is causing births to plummet, as hundreds of thousands of innocent preborn lives are snuffed out every year, to the level of a “Constitutional right” which is necessary to protect “freedom.”

The culture of death is the manifestation of the logic of the Devil, who “is prowling around like a roaring lion looking for [someone] to devour.” Even as numerous nations discover, to their horror, that they are staring into a bleak, childless future, those nations seemingly cannot stop parroting the lies of the agents of the culture of death, who have convinced them that their slavery is freedom, that their sickness is health, and that death is life.

As Pope St. John Paul II wrote in Evangelium vitae, “To claim the right to abortion, infanticide, and euthanasia, and to recognize that right in law, means to attribute to human freedom a perverse and evil significance: that of an absolute power over others and against others. This is the death of true freedom: ‘Truly, truly, I say to you, everyone who commits sin is a slave to sin’ (Jn 8:34).”