Culture Watch: Abortion on “Friday Night Lights”

Culture Watch: Abortion on “Friday Night Lights” July 10, 2010

Some out there have likely enjoyed the honest, well-made show “Friday Night Lights” on NBC.  According to an article entitled “On ‘Friday Night Lights,’ Abortion in a Small Town” by Ginia Bellafante in the New York Times, last night’s episode featured a teenage girl deciding to have an abortion.  I haven’t seen this episode of the show, but I thought this turn-of-events noteworthy–at least it is to me. 

Not knowing how things worked out on the show prevents me from saying more, but this is surely not a good thing–the only exception to this being a decision on the part of the show to reveal the wrenching, numbing, scarring effects of abortion.  It would in some senses surprise some if this was the case, and one wonders whether we will see more of a contemporary popular push to morally legitimize abortion.

Here’s what the Times says:

Initially resolved to end her pregnancy, Becky — played with a bracingly naïve righteousness by Madison Burge on “Friday Night Lights” on NBC — begins to doubt her choice. Is she seeking an abortion simply to counter her mother’s example? What if she were capable, caring and present as a parent? What if, as an emotionally wounded 10th grader without resources living in Dillon, Tex., with its pageant of grim futures, she could defy sociological prediction?

The tortured expression on Becky’s face tells us how profoundly she would like this to be so and yet how clearly she foresees the bleaker reality. “I can’t take care of a baby,” she tearfully tells Tami, matriarch to Dillon’s lost youth. “I can’t.”

With those words Becky decides to have an abortion.

Read the whole piece.

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