Single-issue voters — depending on the issue — often face condescending commentary about their limited world view.

That’s not as true for those who say climate change or immigration animates their politics. But for people who consider themselves pro-life, it’s common to hear the complaint that embracing the call to defend both mothers and pre-born children is an inadequate, shortsighted choice. I frequently hear that when speaking on college campuses across the country, and usually it’s paired with the slur that if pro-life Americans really cared about children, we would do more for the living — though not those living in the womb.

An exchange I had with a student from Miami University of Oxford last May is case in point. The student argued that pro-lifers were actually going to cause suffering because if a baby was permitted to live, things might go wrong and the child could end up in foster care. The student’s conclusion was that we both need to end life in the womb and quit focusing on abortion until, apparently, all other problems in the world are solved.