Norma McCorvey proclaims she is 'Jane Roe' no more

Norma McCorvey and Fr. Frank Pavone Rio Grande Interview

Janet M. Crowe

Document Publication: The Rio Grande Catholic

July 06, 1999

In an exclusive interview with the Rio Grande Catholic newspaper, Norma McCorvey, the Jane Roe of the Supreme Court Roe vs. Wade decision which legalized abortion in the U.S., spoke of her disillusionment with the abortion industry and her conversion to the pro-life movement and Catholicism.

McCorvey said that from 1969 to 1984, "I lived with a lie that I had told." She could not accept all of the pro-abortion rhetoric, discovering that there was nothing to connect the promised benefits of abortion with the truth and the reality she saw on a daily basis.

A constant battle waged within her as if she had two different personalities, McCorvey said. She could not incorporate Norma, the real person she was, with the Jane Roe of the abortion mentality. "Norma was saying this is disgusting, but Jane would start quoting pro-choice lines and rhetoric. Norma would say no, it is not right. You (Jane) have never been there, taken a woman to a room for her to change clothes and then taken her into the (abortion) procedure and you don't know how it feels until you do."

Being a spokesperson for Planned Parenthood and the abortion movement made her mad "because it was a lie," said McCorvey. "The lies make you think you have made the right decision and it all catches up with you, especially when the (post-abortive) woman cries and she asks you why she feels so sad and you can't tell her why."

Norma McCorvey, "Jane Roe" in Roe v. Wade, speaks to Democrats for Life on June 5.

Governor George Bush recently signed into law will, in her opinion, help to stop some of the abortion industry's abuses by allowing young women the support of their parents in making better decisions for themselves and their unborn babies. "Teen pregnancy will probably go down and women will be more accountable for what they are doing, as well as men" being held accountable, said McCorvey. "Parents are going to be more aware of what is going on in their daughters' lives and Texas will set an example for the rest of the nation to follow. Roe vs. Wade came out of Texas and, by this law being passed, it is going to wake up Texas and make them realize that they have a real choice about life."

Regarding the abortion industry's prediction that the new law will cause an increase in back alley abortions, McCorvey said that the exaggerated number of abortion related deaths before Roe vs. Wade was "just make-believe stuff that the pro-aborts came up with." However, deaths caused by legal abortion continue to occur despite their denial by the abortion industry.

She found the personalities of those involved in the pro-abortion and pro-life movements to be as dissimilar as their philosophies. "People in the abortion industry are very hard and cold. I know because I was very hard and cold," McCorvey said in her keynote address to the state convention of Texas Democrats for Life at the Camino Real Hotel in El Paso on June 5,1999. "One thing I found out about pro-lifers and especially they are always happy. .... I wasn't happy. Working in an abortion clinic was like working in a tomb."

A turning point came in McCorvey's break from the abortion mentality when she realized the pro-life community could love her while being opposed to her philosophy, said Father Frank Pavone, International Director of Priests for Life, in a telephone interview with the Rio Grande Catholic. "She was beginning to separate the evil (of abortion) from the person, which is something that the pro-abortion mentality does not do," said Father Pavone. "The problems surrounding an unexpected pregnancy cannot be eliminated by eliminating the child, and that is the way the pro-abortion people believe."

The abortion industry's refusal to allow her to give any information to women making the decision to have abortions pushed her closer to the prolife philosophy. "When a woman has an abortion, that woman is signing up for the ball and chain group because she will always be shackled by what she has done until she repents and asks the Lord for forgiveness," said McCorvey.

After her conversion to Christianity and her renouncement of the abortion movement, McCorvey continued her search for the truth. Father Pavone said, "She came to the pro-life position but then she continued following that truth." He said that when people embrace the truth and are faithful and open to it, truth will lead them all the way. "And that is what she did," said Father Pavone. "She (McCorvey) followed the truth to the fullest expression, which is the Catholic Church."

People are given hope when they see McCorvey, who is perceived as the winner of the Roe vs. Wade decision, now renouncing it, according to Father Pavone. But he advises those who are suspicious of her conversion to the pro-life movement to get to know her. "She suffers a lot for what she has done and a person does not endure sacrifice and suffering for something they do not believe in," said Father Pavone.

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