Here is part 2 of “Is the economy our end-all issue? Is health care?” In this one, I will work through a couple of related issues in order to see some nuances of the argument. If you will remember, the vignettes are there to offer background for the commentary.
Should men have a say in what a woman can do with her body? Abortion is an issue that does not directly affect men, except the father. It seems only men are commenting on the issue. Isn’t it about time we start learning to accept and tolerate differences of opinion? Should we not respect one’s right to choose or deny an abortion?
Shouldn’t We All Just Be Pro-Choice?
It seems wrong-headed to argue that the issue of abortion is limited to accepting cultural differences. Preferences are not the stake in the pro-life claim. The whole thing (i.e. the pro-choice argument) is eerily similar to the arguments made by pro-slavery supporters during the abolition days. The pro-slavery argument doesn’t have many hearers today. But don’t you think they thought their thinking was viable back then?
If a baby is aborted, it is murdered. It is being denied its natural process in the womb. How can it really be put another way if we are being intellectually honest? The fundamental rights to life that it deserves are being denied and there is an ugly double-standard being applied across the board.
Only males talking about the issue? That’s a straw man. I have posted other notes (here) on the issue and women have commented (for and against) and there are many women Pro-Lifers (e.g. Norma McCorvey, aka Jane Roe to start!). Such a comment does not fly.
“I’ve noticed that everybody that is for abortion has already been born” (Ronald Reagan).
Is the pro-abortion argument really similar to the pro-slavery one? Shortly before the Civil War and during the abolition days in Britain, pro-slavery (or, pro-choice for slavery) supporters argued that stopping the slave trade and freeing slaves would be devastating to the economy. That was eventually dropped. But today, our economy seems to be a bigger issue than the dignity of human life (re: abortion). So, what is so eerily similar? Or is that just a straw man? What about cases of rape, incest, etc.?
What is so eerily similar?
(Part A) What is going on here? It is legal to choose an abortion in the US, but it is not “oll korrect” to drink or smoke during pregnancy. This is bizarre (cf. many states have a “fetal homicide law that make it murder to kill an embryo or fetus intentionally, except in cases of abortion—in other words, it’s unlawful to kill the unborn child unless the mother chooses to have it killed,” cf. “Exposing the Dark Work of Abortion”). Do you see this troubling line of reasoning? That should be the conclusion to the debate. But for whatever reason, this huge inconsistency is tolerated. How can it be that a life can be taken away for a reason as silly as “that is her right and choice”?
This is just one way to point out gaping holes in the pro-choice issue. If it is determined that a fetus does not have “human rights until infancy,” then what criteria determine it? To be frank, pro-choice advocates who do not see where this can lead are either ignorant or delusional.
One may argue this is a straw argument. I disagree. One, the argument for a kinship of slavery support and abortion support does share several telling similarities, though not necessarily one-to-one. Granted, it is not the best argument to make against legal abortions. Still, it is actually an argument that can be hashed out to very damning levels. There are also some fishy relationshipsbeing played at by Planned Parenthood that lend to racism, just for example. So, they may not be the end-all of arguments but they still tell something truthful about the situation.
(Part B) What about cases of rape, incest, etc.? The most compelling arguments for allowing abortion are the extreme cases (including certain complications to pregnancy, e.g. an ectopic pregnancy). But just to be honest, these extreme cases make up a very small percentage of all abortions performed in the US.
The usual case is a young single mother having her dreams “dashed” by a pregnancy. I don’t doubt having a baby under those circumstances would be hard. But is there a compelling argument to kill that child so one can “plan” her “parenthood”? Is that really where we want to go? But this is the basis in place for the majority of abortions in the US and the general foundation for making this a woman’s rightful choice. But, there are so many glaring inconsistencies with this reasoning when it comes to many other laws, especially those that pertain to two parties.
Sure, there are extreme cases that are more difficult to deal with. I typically want to show that those extreme circumstances should not be the driver for abortion rights because they are a smokescreen for the real argument. Here, pro-lifers do need to be intellectually and emotionally honest and learn to walk the line when it comes to the issue. When it comes to the extreme situations, it does no good to be cold or callous to the hurting lady. Helpful counsel and love is key to all possible abortion situations.
I have heard the argument hashed out in detail. I often ask, “How is it that two wrongs make a right?” What did the baby do to the mother to deserve suction or curettage? These are difficult questions that should be addressed. It is the man, in the case of rape, not the baby, who is the monster. There are plenty of excellent kids around today who bring joy to their mothers whose Dads are crooks, wife-beaters, sex offenders, etc.
I understand that may not alleviate the problem or help the mental health of a young lady in those circumstances, but it is at least something that should be thought through. Girls have actually done this before. It is just about incredible, but it’s true. If you want to read a good book for this, check out Atonement Child by Francine Rivers. It is a fiction book–full of emotion and tears, but also tackles the personal issues in those situations head-on.
(Part C) I also think one may also make a fair point about how involved the government should be in the matter. Roe v. Wade caused huge problems because it restricted the issue. How is it right to make a decision for abortion rights without answering the key issues that stand against it? The result of this bad supreme court decision has likewise barred state and local governments from dealing with the issue decisively.
What else can be done? Talk to pro-choice supporters about the fetus. They don’t like to hear about it. They don’t like to have ultrasound equipment at their clinics because they might cause a mother to see her baby as a baby rather than a tumor that could be a baby if it is born.
But do you want to know where this ends for me? It is a theological issue. If I pander to abortion I get my hands dirty in what has become one of the greatest assaults on human dignity in history. I cannot go there. God knits us in the womb. How dare we call that just tissue–a potential life?
It will not become a small issue to me. The president does make decisions concerning the issue whether few or many. It is certainly an issue today–not a hangover issue from 1973.