I Am Afraid of this Indisputable Pro-choice Argument

by Matt Walsh
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I took the bait.

I couldn’t help but open an email with the subject line: “You’re afraid of this pro-choice argument”

Afraid? I’m afraid of a lot of things. Actually, five things: spiders, asteroids, ghosts, head lice, and malaria. But arguments? Especially pro-abortion arguments? Definitely not on the list.

I might be frustrated by them; annoyed, angered, even disturbed, but afraid? I don’t think so.

Here’s Rachel, trying to strike fear into my heart:

Dear Matt, ever since I first read your blog I knew you were a cowardly fake. It wasn’t until I started reading some of your anti-choice articles that my suspicions were truly confirmed. You spend a lot of time picking the low hanging fruit. You attack the weakest abortion rights arguments while ignoring the glaring weaknesses in your own position.

If you had the guts or the brains you’d try to respond to the most important abortion rights argument… bodily autonomy or bodily integrity. This means that we have the final jurisdiction over our own bodies. Nobody can claim a right to our body that goes above our own right. Nobody can use our bodies without consent. We cannot be forced to donate organs or blood to someone else. A fetus must survive on a woman’s body so the woman has a right to withdrawal her consent and her body at any time.

This is the pro-choice argument that no anti-choice fanatic… especially one as stubborn and simpleminded as you… could ever possibly dispute. If you still don’t understand, try to imagine this hypothetical…

Imagine that you wake up one morning in a hospital bed. In the bed next to you is a famous singer. He is unconscious and all of these tubes are connected from him to you. A doctor comes in and explains that the singer became sick and you are the only person with the right blood type to match his. They need you to remain hooked up to him until he recovers… they tell you it should only take nine months. Until then, he needs to use all of your organs… your kidneys, liver, lungs, everything… just to survive. If you unplug yourself, he will die. So do you think you are obligated to stay plugged in? Does he have a right to live off of you like this? Should you be FORCED to stay connected to him?

That’s what situation the pregnant woman is in. Instead of harping on all of these irrelevant issues, I wish you’d be brave enough to address it from this angle. It is immoral to require a woman to sustain a fetus and it is moral for a woman to make a decision with her body based on what is right for her. How can you argue against this?

But I guess your blog is more about preaching to the choir than actually being intelligent and bold in your writing. What a shame.

-Rachel

Here’s my answer:

Dear Rachel,

You’re right. You win. I have no response. I can’t think of any reason why you’re wrong about any of the points you raised.

Well, I can’t think of any reason — except for, like, ten reasons. So I’ll start with five reasons why that hypothetical is flawed, and move on to five additional reasons why your overall argument is flawed.

Here we go:

1. Your analogy is flawed because it presupposes that the relationship between mother and child is no more significant, and carries with it no more responsibility, than the relationship between a person and some random stranger in a hospital bed.

This is absurd. If we’re trying to make this hypothetical as close to pregnancy as possible, shouldn’t the sick singer (or violinist, according to the original iteration of this hypothetical) at least be your child? Your argument doesn’t work because the fact that your child is your child, and not some strange adult from across town, is precisely the point. Hidden cleverly in this hypothetical is the insinuation that one cannot agree that an unborn child has a right to his mother’s body, without agreeing that anyone in the entire world, in any context, for any reason, at any point, for any period of time, has a right to a woman’s body.

Nice try, Rachel.

Just because a mother is expected to be a mother doesn’t mean she’s also expected to be a slave, a prostitute, and a forced organ donor to talented musical artists. Indeed, the extent of our responsibility to a person hinges in many ways on our relationship to them. You would, I assume, agree that you have a responsibility to your born children, wouldn’t you? And your responsibility to them extends far beyond your responsibility to your neighbor, or your plumber, or your trash collector, doesn’t it? The relationship matters. Your hypothetical fails because it pretends that relationships are irrelevant.

2. Your analogy is flawed because it leaves out an important detail: how did the singer become ill in the first place?

Aside from cases of rape, a child is only conceived because two people intentionally committed a particular act which has, literally billions of times, resulted in the conception of a human life.

This singer came down with a terrible sickness. You might feel pity for him, but you didn’t cause him to be sick. You didn’t put him in this state. You had absolutely nothing to do with it. The same cannot be said when a child is conceived.

3. Your analogy is flawed because, when framed properly, it doesn’t strengthen your moral position — it defeats it.

The hypothetical should be this: your own child becomes very sick because of something you did. He needs a blood transfusion and you are the only match. Would you refuse to give him your blood because it infringes on your bodily autonomy? Could this be morally justified? You put your kid in the hospital and now you will choose to watch him die because he ‘doesn’t have a right to your blood.’ THIS scenario would be the closest to abortion. And, if you are consistent in your affinity for ‘bodily autonomy,’ you could not criticize parents who’d rather let their child die than be inconvenienced by a blood transfusion.

4. But, no matter how you frame the hypothetical, it is still flawed because it ignores one crucial thing: natural order.

An unborn child is exactly where he is supposed to be. He couldn’t possibly be anywhere else. This is the fundamental difference between two people hooked up to machines on a hospital bed, and a ‘fetus’ connected to his mother insider her womb. The former represents unnatural and extraordinary measures, while the latter represents something natural and ordinary. The unborn child is where Nature (or God, as I call Him) intends it to be.

The unborn child is not, in any scientific or medical sense, an intruder or a parasite. These words have meanings, and unborn babies do not fit the bill. They are where they are supposed to be. They are where they belong. A fish belongs in water, just as an unborn child belongs in his mother’s womb.

5. Beyond all of these points, the analogy is flawed because abortion is not the same as ‘unplugging’ a person from medical equipment.

It might be quite sanitary and pleasant to refer to abortion as a woman ‘withdrawing support’ from her child, but the procedure goes beyond this. During a ‘termination,’ the baby is actively killed. It is crushed, dismembered, poisoned, or torn apart. It is killed. It is actively, actually, purposefully, intentionally killed.

In fact, even in the original hypothetical — where you’re hooked up to a singer in a hospital bed — while it would be acceptable to unplug yourself, it would NOT be morally or legally permissible to shoot the poor guy in the head. A person’s physical reliance on you does not give you the moral (or legal, usually) right to murder them. ‘Withdrawing support’ is precisely what an abortion isn’t. If it was, then the baby would be delivered and left to die in the corner of the room. Of course, this is how some abortionists conduct business, but it’s illegal. If they’re caught, they go to jail.

6. But the bodily autonomy argument is flawed in ways that go beyond that utterly fallacious and misleading hypothetical. It’s flawed because nobody is crazy enough to consistently apply it to pregnant women.

According to bodily autonomy, a mother could not be judged harshly for smoking, drinking, doing coke, and going skydiving (hopefully not all in the same day) while 6 months pregnant. If you really believe that a woman’s body is autonomous — that she has absolute jurisdiction over it — then you must defend a mother who does things that could seriously harm her unborn child, even if she hasn’t chosen to abort it. This is not a slippery slope argument; this is a reasonable and inevitable application of your principle.

7. The bodily autonomy argument is flawed because it requires you to support abortion at every stage of development.

I’m throwing this in here because most pro-aborts will not (vocally) defend abortion at 8 or 9 months. But — if bodily autonomy is your claim — you must. Is a woman’s body less autonomous when she’s been pregnant for 35 weeks? There is no way around it: bodily autonomy means that it is moral to kill a fully formed baby, at seven months, or eight months, or nine months.

8. The bodily autonomy argument is flawed because you can’t limit it to pregnant women.

You say that our bodies cannot be ‘used’ without our ‘consent.’ Why should this apply only to pregnancy and organ donations? Children, at any age, create profound demands on their parents’ bodies. Whether it’s waking up in the middle of the night for the crying baby, working long hours to pay for their food and clothing, carrying them around when they cannot walk, staying home when you’d like to go out, going out (to bring them to the doctor, or school, or soccer practice) when you’d like to stay in, etc, etc, etc, and so forth. An argument for absolute bodily autonomy means that it can’t be illegal, or considered immoral, for a parent to decline to do any of these things, so long as their decision was made in the name of bodily autonomy.

9. The bodily autonomy argument is flawed because it necessarily justifies things like public masturbation.

If I can ‘do what I want with my body,’ then it becomes very difficult to launch a salient moral or legal attack against a man who chooses to sit in a playground in front of children and pleasure his own body.

10. Finally, the bodily autonomy argument is flawed because our bodies are not autonomous.

I’m often accused of oversimplifying, but I’ve never oversimplified to the extent of you bodily autonomy proponents. Once we’ve considered every complexity and nuance, we can rightly say that our bodies are autonomous in some ways, and in some circumstances, but not in others. We cannot say that they are absolutely autonomous, and I find it hard to believe that anyone truly thinks that.

Any claim or responsibility placed on me, automatically includes a claim and responsibility on my body. Everything I do involves my body. I am my body. CS Lewis would say that I am my soul and I have a body. I agree with him, but for our purposes in this discussion, leaving souls and spirits aside, we are our bodies. Whether we are expected to pay taxes or drive the speed limit or provide a safe and sanitary home for our children, we are using our bodies to meet these expectations. We experience and participate in life with our bodies. Absolute bodily autonomy is inexorably linked with personal autonomy. If my body is autonomous, my person must be autonomous, and if my person is autonomous, then my very existence is autonomous, and if my very existence is autonomous, then it is simply unacceptable and (by your logic) immoral for anyone to expect me to do anything for anyone at any point for any reason.

If you concede that we ought to be expected or even required to do certain things, then you are placing limits on our bodily autonomy. If you place limits on our bodily autonomy, then you are admitting that limits can be placed on our bodily autonomy. If you are admitting that limits can be placed on our bodily autonomy, then you must consider whether abortion falls within or outside of those limits. And here’s the rub: if you contend that abortion falls within the limits on bodily autonomy, you must justify that belief beyond simply reasserting our right to bodily autonomy.

Personally, I think that abortion goes well beyond the limits on bodily autonomy, for all of the reasons I’ve previously stipulated.

There’s your answer, Rachel.

But, except for the ten reasons why you’re wrong, you’re right on the money.

And, except for the ten answers I’ve provided, I have no answers for you.

I guess you win.

Thanks for writing.

-Matt Walsh, http://themattwalshblog.com/2014/03/04/i-am-afraid-of-this-indisputable-pro-choice-argument/

There Is No Such Thing as a ‘Pro-Choice’ Christian – Part 1

by Matt Walsh

What if I told you that I believe it’s OK to physically abuse your household pets?

Hold on. Don’t jump on my case about it. I’m saying it’s acceptable to torture and torment pets — but only pets. And only your own pets. You certainly can’t go around drop kicking, headbutting, or piledriving your neighbor’s dog, but your dog is a different story.

And you can only punch, pistol whip, and karate chop your gerbils, cats, puppies, parrots, etc, up until a certain age. And only in the most humane way possible.

That’s all. I’m not some kind of psycho animal hater — I’ve never even assaulted my own cat, and I don’t think I ever will — I just happen to think you should have that right, should the need or desire ever arise.

But, beyond this one admittedly unique viewpoint, my overall ideology is pretty mainstream. I mean, I think it’s important to recycle and eat healthy and be nice to people and all that stuff.

Now, what if I told you that I also consider myself an animal rights activist?

Do you think the other animal rights activists will embrace me as their own? Will they allow the title “animal rights activist” to be bent and broadened to the extent that it also includes maniacs who think we ought to vociferously defend a person’s right to smack their pets around?

Alright, maybe this is a bad example. PETA kills thousands of animals every year, yet they seem to be celebrated in the animal rights community.

Still, you get my point. And in case you don’t, I’ll spell it out:

Our beliefs are not packaged, sealed, and sold separately. We don’t formulate our personal philosophy in a vacuum. Your views on one subject will be colored, or clarified, by your views on everything else.

If you think you live in a world where it is morally acceptable to do X, then your opinion on Y must be understood in the context of a world where X is considered righteous.

So this is why you can’t, for instance, advocate for slavery while also being a proponent of civil rights. Either you’re lying about your civil rights stance, or else you have an understanding of ‘civil rights’ which does not include a right to be free from enslavement. If that’s the case, then you are not a believer in civil rights at all, no matter how loudly you insist otherwise.

For very similar reasons, you simply cannot be Christian and pro-abortion.

In order to be both, you’d have to change Christianity into a religion that does not and would not condemn the murder of human children. You’d have to turn Christ into a Savior who embraces infanticide, and God into a Father who creates children but does not necessarily expect us or command us to refrain from violently destroying them.

What you are left with is something that bears no resemblance to Christianity. In fact, you’re left with something that is, in every way, exactly the opposite.

You are the pro-animal abuse animal rights activist, the pro-slavery civil rights proponent, the circular square, the north south. You are attempting to be two diametrically opposed things simultaneously. You’re trying to do something that is not only theologically impossible, but scientifically impossible as well.

If churches in America had any guts, this message would be proclaimed from the pulpit at least once a month. Especially this week, after that revolting story about a ‘Christian’ abortionist.

This man — a mercenary killer of infants — insists that his faith ‘calls’ him to decapitate babies. ‘Dr.’ Willie Parker says that abortion “became this conviction of compassion in a spiritual sense of the deepest level of love that you can have for another person, that you can have compassion for their suffering and you can act to relieve it.”

He’s right when he says that Christianity is a religion of love and compassion. But he understands (or claims to understand) love and compassion to include the extermination of 50 million children worldwide each year. His version of love leaves the ground scattered with the corpses of slaughtered babies. Christ’s love called us all to protect and love children, and warned us that we’d be better off with a stone around our neck, drowning in the sea, than defying that commandment.

Willie’s concept of love, then, isn’t just incompatible with Christian love — it’s the precise opposite of it.

But Willie The Child Killing Quack is not alone. Even Planned Parenthood has a “clergy advisory board” composed of fake clergy, peddling fake Christianity, in order to sell and promote infanticide. Meanwhile, the polls continue to show that a vast number of ‘Christians’ agree with abortion, to some extent or another.

Now, I almost hesitate to point out the numerous Bible verses that clearly and unequivocally condemn all abortion, at any stage, for any reason. I hesitate because I don’t want to reinforce the popular but horribly misconstrued notion that the Bible only teaches against or for a certain act if it somewhere explicitly mentions that act by name.

Scripture must be studied as a whole, in its entirety — not in disconnected pieces. From that view, we see a religion which preaches a message that is, in every facet, from every angle, from every vantage point, completely opposed to the killing of innocent children. It doesn’t need to say “hey, by the way, don’t kill innocent children in the womb,” in order for its anti-murdering-innocent-children-in-the-womb stance to be clear.

In any case, conveniently enough, the Bible is pretty explicit about abortion.

Shall we count the ways?

-Matt Walsh, http://themattwalshblog.com/2014/05/28/abortion/

Life, Death, and Lies on the Campaign Trail

By Albert Mohler

“The controversy over comments made by U.S. Senate candidate Richard Mourdock reveals the undeniable ugliness of American politics. At the same time, the media firestorm underscores the importance of getting the pro-life position right — and expressing it well.

Mourdock, the Republican nominee for the U.S. Senate in Indiana, was debating his opponent, Rep. Joe Donnelly, this past Tuesday night, when the issue of abortion emerged. Both candidates claimed to affirm that life begins at conception, but Mourdock called for the end of abortion on demand. He then extended his remarks with these words:

“This is that issue that every candidate for federal, or even state, office faces, and I too stand for life. I know there are some who disagree and I respect their point of view and I believe that life begins at conception. The only exception I have [for abortion] is in that case [where] the life of the mother [is threatened]. I struggled with it for a long time, but I came to realize that life is a gift from God. And I think even when life begins in that horrible situation of rape that it is something that God intended to happen.”

Immediately, Mourdock was charged with claiming that God intended a rape to happen. A spokesperson for the Obama campaign said that President Obama “felt those comments were outrageous and demeaning to women.” Democratic operatives and media voices denounced Mourdock as hateful, extremist, and worse, and even many of his fellow Republicans scattered and ran for cover. Some demanded that Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney should pull an ad supportive of Mourdock.

A closer look at Mourdock’s comments reveals that the candidate was not in any true sense calling rape “something that God intended to happen.” Everything Mourdock said in that answer flowed from his stated presupposition that life begins at conception, and that every human life is a gift from God.

Nevertheless, the liberal media went into full apoplexy, painting Richard Mourdock as a woman-hating extremist with reprehensible views on an issue as serious as rape.

Almost none of those who quoted Mourdock in making these charges used the full quotation, much less the audio of its delivery in the debate. The full quote reveals that the candidate was affirming the full dignity of every human life, regardless of the circumstance of conception.

To their credit, some in the media saw through the controversy. Writing for The New Republic, Amy Sullivan made clear that she disagrees with Mourdock’s position, but she honestly explained his words, and she expressed disappointment in his treatment by many liberal commentators.

In her words:

“Despite the assertions of many liberal writers I read and otherwise admire, I don’t think that politicians like Mourdock oppose rape exceptions because they hate women or want to control women. I think they’re totally oblivious and insensitive and can’t for a moment place themselves in the shoes of a woman who becomes pregnant from a rape. I think most don’t particularly care that their policy decisions can impact what control a woman does or doesn’t have over her own body. But if Mourdock believes that God creates all life and that to end a life created by God is murder, then all abortion is murder, regardless of the circumstances in which a pregnancy came about.”

She is exactly right, and bravely so.  She continued:

“Take a look again at Mourdock’s words: “I came to realize that life is that gift from God. And…even when life begins in that horrible situation of rape, that it is something that God intended to happen.” The key word here is “it.” I think it’s pretty clear that Mourdock is referring to a life that is conceived by a rape. He is not arguing that rape is the something that God intended to happen.”

Amy Sullivan also acknowledged that Mourdock’s position is “a fairly common theological belief.” Her candor and honesty were refreshing exceptions to most of the coverage.

Similarly, Kevin Drum, writing in the liberal journal Mother Jones, also registered his disagreement with Mourdock’s argument. Nevertheless, he was bold to ask the obvious — “can’t we all acknowledge that this is just conventional Christian theology?” He added, “What I find occasionally odd is that so many conventional bits of theology like this are so controversial if someone actually mentions them in public.”

Both Drum and Sullivan described Mourdock’s argument as a form of theodicy, meaning a defense of God that points to good coming out of evil. They are certainly right to identify this argument as germane to the context of rape and pregnancy, but Mourdock did not actually go so far as to make the argument.

The controversy over his statements reveals the irresponsibility of so many in the media and the political arena. The characterizations and willful distortions of Mourdock’s words amount to nothing less than lies.

At the same time, Mr. Mourdock is responsible for giving the media and his political enemies the very ammunition for their distortions.

The debate question did not force Mourdock to garble his argument. The cause of defending the unborn is harmed when the argument for that defense is expressed badly and recklessly, and Mourdock’s answer was both reckless and catastrophically incomplete.

The issue of exceptions that might justify an abortion cannot be discussed carelessly. Furthermore, any reference to rape must start with a clear affirmation of the horrifying evil of rape and an equal affirmation of concern for any woman or girl victimized by a rapist. At this point, the defender of the unborn should point to the fact that every single human life is sacred at every point of its development and without regard to the context of that life’s conception. No one would deny that this is true of a six-year-old child conceived in the horror of a rape. Those who defend the unborn know that it was equally true when that child was in the womb.

No doubt, Mourdock meant to express this point, but his words fell far short of an adequate expression of the argument. In his political situation, that failure might be fatal. In terms of the cause of defending life, his garbled argument makes the task more difficult.

And yet, this controversy was really not about a failure of communication. Behind it all is the great chasm that separates those who defend the sanctity of life and those who defend abortion on demand. With that in mind, how should the defenders of life think about exceptions that might justify an abortion?

One truth must be transparently clear — a consistent defense of all human life means that there is no acceptable exception that would allow an intentional abortion. If every life is sacred, there is no exception.

The three exceptions most often proposed call for abortion to be allowed only in cases of rape, incest, or to save the life of the mother. These are the exceptions currently affirmed by Mitt Romney in his presidential campaign. What should we think of these?

First, when speaking of saving the life of the mother, we should be clear that the abortion of her unborn child cannot be the intentional result. There can be no active intention to kill the baby. This does not mean that a mother might, in very rare and always tragic circumstances, require a medical procedure or treatment to save her life that would, as a secondary effect, terminate the life of her unborn child. This is clearly established in moral theory, and we must be thankful that such cases are very rare.

Next, when speaking of cases involving rape and incest, we must affirm the sinful tragedy of such acts and sympathize without reservation with the victims. We must then make the argument that the unborn child that has resulted from such a heinous act should not be added to the list of victims. That child possesses no less dignity than a child conceived in any other context.

How should we think of these questions in light of our current cultural and political context? We must contend for the full dignity and humanity of every single human life at every point of development and life from conception until natural death, and we cannot rest from this cause so long as the threat to the dignity and sanctity of any life remains.

In the meantime, we are informed by the fact that, as the Gallup organization affirmed just months ago, the vast majority of Americans are willing to support increased restrictions on abortion so long as those exceptions are allowed. We should gladly accept and eagerly support such laws and the candidates who support them, knowing that such a law would save the life of over a million unborn children in the nation each year.

Can we be satisfied with such a law? Of course not, and we cannot be disingenuous in our public statements. But we can eagerly support a law that would save the vast majority of unborn children now threatened by abortion, even as we seek to convince our fellow Americans that this is not enough.

We must argue for the dignity, humanity, and right to life of every unborn child, regardless of the context of its conception, but we must argue well and make our arguments carefully. The use and deliberate abuse of Richard Mourdock’s comments should underline the risk of falling short in that task.”

“I am always glad to hear from readers. Write me at mail@albertmohler.com. Follow regular updates on Twitter at www.twitter.com/albertmohler

Kevin Drum, “Richard Mourdock Gets in Trouble for His Extremely Conventional Religious Beliefs,” Mother Jones, Wednesday, October 24, 2012.

Amy Sullivan, “Why Liberals Are Misreading Mourdock,” The New Republic, Thursday, October 25, 2012.”

RELATED POSTS

-Albert Mohler, http://www.albertmohler.com/2012/10/26/the-mourdock-moment-life-death-and-lies-on-the-campaign-trail/

Baby Murder

Strong words from apologist John Stott:

“How can we speak of the termination of a pregnancy when what we really mean is the destruction of a human life? How can we talk of therapeutic abortion when pregnancy is not a disease needing therapy and what abortion effects is not a cure but a killing? How can we talk of abortion as a kind of retroactive contraception when what it does is not prevent conception but destroy the conceptus? We need to have the courage to use accurate language. Abortion is feticide: the destruction of an unborn child. It is the shedding of innocent blood, and any society that can tolerate this, let alone legislate for it, has ceased to be civilized.”

-John Stott,  via http://www.geneveith.com/2012/10/12/accurate-language-for-abortion/

Abortion & Rape: 2 Wrongs Don’t Make a Right

by Trevin Wax
“Abortion is front-and-center in the presidential campaign due to a congressman’s flub on national TV.

In case you’ve missed the news, Todd Akin, a Republican congressman from Missouri running for the Senate, was asked about abortion in the case of rape. His response:

“First of all, from what I understand from doctors, that’s really rare… If it’s a legitimate rape, the female body has ways to try to shut that whole thing down.”

Needless to say, such remarks proved offensive. Akin appeared to be making distinctions between violent rape and other forms (statutory perhaps?) as he sought to answer the question about abortion. Other Republicans are calling for him to pull out of the race while the Romney-Ryan campaign quickly tried to distance itself from the remarks.

Rape is a horrific crime with countless emotional and psychological repercussions. No one should ever speak of such an atrocity without having their heart gripped with sympathy for the victim. Any time we speak about such an unspeakable act of violation, we ought to consider the weight of our words.

Even so, as disturbing as Akin’s remarks are, I am concerned about the conflation of issues that suddenly appeared in the aftermath. Once the comment went viral, Republicans all over the country began distancing themselves from the remarks (rightly so) while also claiming to be pro-life except in the case of rape. (Romney is an example.)

The media circus moved quickly from discussion of Akin’s remarks to a wider discussion about the legitimacy of abortion in a tough case. And some “pro-life” politicians took the bait, not only condemning Akin’s unfortunate remarks but also declaring their support for abortion in this particular case.

Let me be clear: Allowing abortion in the case of rape is not the way to express sympathy toward a victim of this crime. Abortion only destroys the life of another victim.

That’s why I wish the conversation with Akin had gone more like this…

Host: So you also believe abortion ought to be outlawed in the case of rape?

Akin: Rape is a horrible crime, and a rapist ought to be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law. I stand for human rights over against anyone who would violate the life of another – from the rapist to the abortionist.

Host: So you’d outlaw abortion in the case of rape?

Akin: Absolutely. As I said, I stand for human rights for all, including the unborn.

Host: But why should a woman who gets pregnant out of no fault of her own be forced to carry a pregnancy to term?

Akin: It is a tragic situation indeed. And my heart goes out to any woman in such circumstances. That’s why I could never recommend that she abort her child. Inflicting violence upon another innocent victim, in this case the baby, is not the way to move past the tragedy of her own innocence being taken.

Host: So you’d pass laws that would force her to carry on the pregnancy?

Akin: Like I said, I stand for the rights of all human beings. Even in a difficult situation like rape, the unborn child should have human rights. We must not let circumstances dictate to us when humans have rights. Otherwise, we could justify all sorts of atrocities in the name of “difficult circumstances.”

Host: But having a child as a result of rape would be a terrible reminder of the crime, wouldn’t it?

Akin: That’s possible. But let me ask you another question. If a woman chose to carry her child to term and then found that every time she looked at her infant she remembered the horror of the rape, would we allow her to smother the baby?

Host: Of course not!

Akin: You’re right. Because no matter how difficult her circumstances, we recognize the humanity of the infant. Unfortunately, many in our society refuse to recognize the humanity of the unborn.

Host: But your opinion on the humanity of the unborn shouldn’t be forced upon a woman who doesn’t hold that view.

Akin: Biology textbooks and scientists tell us the same thing we see when we look at a 4-D ultrasound: the fetus is human. Now, you can make the case that the unborn human should not have rights. And many do. That’s why unborn girls are aborted at a much higher rate than unborn boys, not only in places like China but in the United States as well. That’s why the number of children with Down Syndrome has plummeted. That’s why so many abortion clinics target inner-city areas with high minority populations. You see, once we begin to discriminate against some human beings, we are on the fast track to denying human rights for others.

Host: So you stand by your conviction that abortion should be outlawed even in the case of rape?

Akin: I believe that all innocent human life should be protected. So, yes. This difficult situation is about three people: the rapist, the mother, and the baby. Currently, there is no death penalty required for the rapist. I refuse to believe we ought to give an innocent victim a sentence more severe than the perpetrator of the crime.”

-Trevin Wax, http://thegospelcoalition.org/blogs/trevinwax/2012/08/20/what-todd-akin-should-have-said-about-abortion-and-rape/

Gendercide and Planned Parenthood

by Denny Burk

“In my previous post, I highlighted Live Action’s latest sting operation of a Planned Parenthood (PP) facility in Austin, Texas. A hidden camera disclosed a PP worker counseling a patient about sex selective abortion. The patient claimed that she only wanted a boy and that she intended to kill the unborn child if an ultrasound indicated it was a girl. The worker showed the patient exactly how to get this done.

PP has now released a statement in response to the video. PP’s response is a moral outrage for many reasons, but I want to highlight two.

First, Planned Parenthood fails to condemn sex selective abortions. The statement reads:

Planned Parenthood condemns sex selection motivated by gender bias, and urges leaders to challenge the underlying conditions that lead to these beliefs and practices, including addressing the social, legal, economic, and political conditions that promote gender bias and lead some to value one gender over the other.

It’s a shame to have to do this, but this statement is deceptive and must be parsed. Notice that PP doesn’t condemn all “sex selection,” but only sex selection that is “motivated by gender bias.” PP will continue to allow any woman to pursue a sex selective abortion. Their main concern is the “gender bias” on the part of the mother, not protecting female babies from being killed because they are female. No surprise here, but PP continues to show no regard for the humanity of the unborn. The lives of unborn girls are disposable as far as Planned Parenthood is concerned.

Second, Planned Parenthood has fired the worker who is shown in the video, but not because she facilitated sex selection. PP says the worker “did not follow our protocol for providing information and guidance when presented with a highly unusual patient scenario.” PP does not define what that protocol is, but apparently their protocol allows for women to pursue sex selective abortions. In fact, PP says that they “do not believe that curtailing access to abortion services is a legitimate means of addressing sex selection.” In short, they fired the worker, but sex selection will continue at PP.

The statement is an absolute chapter 11 morally bankrupt response. It has no regard for the lives of the unborn, and it affirms PP’s intention to continue to allow sex selection in its facilities.

With over 50 million babies having been legally killed since 1973, abortion on demand is certainly the greatest human rights crisis of our time. But Planned Parenthood doesn’t see it that way. PP is the America’s leading abortion provider. In 2010 alone, it provided 329,445 abortions in its facilities while only referring 841 customers to adoption agencies. Estimates say that PP made $135 million dollars in 2010 on their abortion services.

Without question, PP has learned well how to leverage our national sin for its own profit. They are not about to allow sex selection to slow their abortion mills. They’ve got way too much at stake.”

-Denny Burk, http://www.dennyburk.com/planned-parenthoods-morally-bankrupt-response/

Planned Parenthood Assists Gendercide

Planned Parenthood & Gendercide

“Lila Rose and Live Action have exposed the dark underbelly of Planned Parenthood once again. In the video above, the undercover cameras catch Planned Parenthood helping a woman who says she wants to kill her unborn child if it’s a girl but to keep it if it’s a boy. The Planned Parenthood worker even informs the mother how she can manipulate the system to get Medicaid to pay for her ultrasound.

This is a chilling video. At one point, the Planned Parenthood worker assures the patient that the abortion won’t affect her ability to have children in the future. The worker does so by informing her that she herself has had two abortions and four children.

In 2010, The Economist called the worldwide killing of unborn girls a “gendercide”:

It is no exaggeration to call this gendercide. Women are missing in their millions—aborted, killed, neglected to death. In 1990 an Indian economist, Amartya Sen, put the number at 100m; the toll is higher now. The crumb of comfort is that countries can mitigate the hurt, and that one, South Korea, has shown the worst can be avoided. Others need to learn from it if they are to stop the carnage.

Watch the video above. Read the rest of The Economist article here.”

-Denny Burk, http://www.dennyburk.com/planned-parenthood-assists-gendercide/

An Appointment She Wished She had Missed

“I was 29 years old, and had just moved across country for a new job. I was scared, and alone. And I knew the minute I landed in my new city, the decision to move had been a huge mistake. But I was there, and had no money to move back home. I’d have to just make it work. As time wore on, I felt increasingly alone and depressed. Nights were spent at home, alone, usually with a bottle of wine. I was living in a two story building with windows overlooking the apartments next door. I had been there about 2 months and had noticed a very nice looking guy next door. We had spoken a couple of times in the parking lot and he seemed nice enough. One night, I decided to take the bold step of introducing myself. Encouraged by the half bottle of wine I had consumed, I grabbed an unopened bottle and headed next door. It didn’t take long for us to go through with it. He was nice and warm and, needless to say, very willing to relieve me of my loneliness. Trouble was, because of my move, my prescription for my pills had run out about a month earlier, and I hadn’t bothered to get a new one. But I wouldn’t worry about that, it’d be OK. About 4 weeks later, I knew something wasn’t right. I was out of town on a business trip and couldn’t keep anything down, especially in the morning. Sure enough, I got back home, went to the doctor, and he confirmed my suspicions. Funny thing is, I remember how happy I was. I remember smiling, and thinking, “I’m going to have a baby!” The next thing the doctor said was, “We can set up an appointment for you next week; we’ll take care of everything.” That’s when the reality set in. Of course he was right, he was “the doctor.” I was unmarried, couldn’t even remember the name of the “father,” and there was no way I was going to try to explain this to my mother, 1400 miles away. I couldn’t lay this at her feet and expect her forgiveness.

I remember driving up to the building to keep “my appointment”. Somehow, I managed to get through the whole thing. I was by myself, no one went with me. I’m strong, I knew I could do it, and then everything would be OK, back to normal. When the doctor was done, he came into the room, smiling, to announce everything went just fine… “Oh and, by the way, it was a boy”. That was the moment I realize I had just aborted my son. I had just killed the little boy that was to have been my son. That was 30 years ago. I still hear the doctor’s voice. I still see myself driving home, stunned by what I had just done. I still remember the irony of calling my mother later that same day just to hear her voice. And I still remember that two days after “my procedure” was Mother’s Day. I am a Christian, and have been all of my life. I take full responsibility for my actions 30 years ago. No one made that decision but me. I have prayed for forgiveness, and know that it has been granted by my Heavenly Father. But, I can’t find it in my heart to forgive myself. I probably never will. Know this… if you are considering abortion, the consequences of the decision you make today will be with you your entire life. You don’t get a do over. Know that you are aborting a living being, a child, no matter how young the fetus is. You may be strong enough to go through the procedure, but the pain you will live with the rest of your life will drive you to your knees. You’d think after 30 years I would have dealt with it. I keep trying.”

Age: 59
Location: Columbus, OH
Date: May 14, 2012

http://www.abort73.com/testimony/1393/

Ashamed and Disappointed

Last week in Louisville I ended up staying in a hotel that was a little bit off the beaten path, so to speak, just outside the downtown core, out where most of the storefronts were boarded up and only fast food restaurants and strip clubs kept their lights on at night. Every time I walked from my hotel to the conference or from the conference to the hotel, I had to pass by an abortion clinic, a building with a sign that declared it a “Women’s Surgical Center.”

One morning, as I walked by that clinic, passing directly in front of it, I saw that three or four people were just outside, holding signs and passing out pamphlets. I was taken aback; here in Ontario it has long since been declared illegal to protest outside a clinic. Yet there they were, quietly and peacefully protesting.

Standing a little bit apart from those people were two men and a woman, each wearing an orange vest emblazoned with “Escort.” These three people were escorting young women from the parking lot to the clinic, walking them past the protestors, all of whom were behaving peacefully; two were seated on the sidewalk praying, the others were calling to the women and saying, “Please don’t kill your baby. You don’t have to do this!” One young woman walked by them—she couldn’t have been older than sixteen or seventeen—with her mother beside her, her head down. She quietly took a pamphlet and disappeared inside. The people on the sidewalk kept praying. A moment later another woman, perhaps in her twenties or thirties, passed by the protestors and went inside as well.

All of that unraveled in the few seconds it took for me to pass by—a very powerful few seconds. I was shocked and gravely disappointed—shocked again, shocked anew, that we allow this to happen, that our society not only allows this to happen, but is actually complicit in this genocide. And I was so gravely disappointed in myself, so ashamed. I felt no animosity toward those young women. They were doing only what they have been instructed to do, what parents and friends and guidance counselors and maybe even pastors have told them is the happiest outcome. “It’s just like having a tumor removed. It’s just a small surgery; it will be over before you know it. It’s better this way.”

That little girl who went in there was a sinner behaving like a sinner, an unbeliever acting out of unbelief, desperate to rid herself of the evidence of her sin or perhaps the evidence of a sin committed against her. She was wrong, of course, and will have to give an account for what she has done; but I harbor no ill-will for her. It is me I was disgusted with and me I was ashamed of. Disgusted that I could watch that and not do something, ashamed that I have no idea what to do and that I have done so little. I don’t even know what I ought to do. Cry out to God and ask him to intervene? Demand answers from God as to how he can allow this to go on? What do you do, how do you react, when you see someone about to commit murder? I, we, do nothing. We feel disturbed, we feel bad, we feel guilty and ashamed, and we walk away. This atrocity has been going on all around me all of my life and I do so very little about it. I stopped for a moment, felt revulsion, and then went on my way and ate breakfast.

A couple of years ago I was reflecting on the sins that we, as Christians in this day and this time, tend to tolerate. What I said about abortion then still rings true.

Christians hate abortion. We believe that God is the creator of life and believe that life begins at the very moment of conception. We believe that each life is a gift, whether it is a life that is wanted or unwanted by the mother, whether it is a life that will be “normal” or one that will be marked by profound disability. All humans are created in the image of God and, therefore, all life has intrinsic value. And if all of this is true, then of course we despise abortion and long to see it abolished. We hate it so much that we do…well…what do we do? If we are honest with ourselves we have to admit that most of us do not do much of anything.

What have you done in the past week, the past month, the past year to actively combat abortion? If you are like me, you’ve done very little. You may have prayed that God will change hearts and change the laws of the land. And this is good, of course. If there is to be any change, prayer will be instrumental. You may have spoken to some friends or neighbors or family members, trying to convince them of the value of life. But very few of us have done anything substantial, anything that could possibly one day appear in a history text. Few of us move beyond the “I hate it” stage into some form of active combat.

If we imagine Christians a century in the future, or perhaps two centuries, how will this kind of action, or inaction, appear to them? What will the verdict of history be? How will we be able to explain our complacency? They will read our words, all perfectly preserved in digital media, and they will know that we wrote and spoke about our hatred for abortion and our desire to see it abolished. But will they see actions to go along with all of those words? Maybe we are just waiting for it to die a natural death.

They may judge us harshly for this. They may have every right to.

-Tim Challies,
http://www.challies.com/articles/ashamed-and-disappointed
more info here: http://www.dennyburk.com/speak-for-the-unborn-2/

Stop Patronizing Women, Offer Support and the Truth

Recently a Texas judge upheld a law that requires a woman to be shown an ultrasound before obtaining an abortion. His decision was discussed on The View and Joyce Behar and Barbara Walters made the following stunning statements:

Joyce Behar: “It’s very totalitarian in my opinion. I mean, it smacks of forcing somebody to confront something that they have already decided they don’t want to deal with.”

So if a person doesn’t want to deal with something (in this case, someone), you just avoid it? Can you imagine applying this principle to other situations in your life? “I don’t want to deal with the fact that my daughter has been molested, so I’ll just ignore it.” “I don’t want to deal with my child being bullied at school, so I’ll just ignore it.” Countless people suffer tremendously because they don’t deal with the truth but disregard it.  Ignorance is not bliss. Proverbs 14:8 says, “The wisdom of the prudent is to give thought to their ways, but the folly of fools is deception.” It is very disrespectful to women to withhold truth from them. They need to know facts and see their unborn baby before they make a decision that will affect them for the rest of their lives. Women need support, not abortion.

Barbara Walters: “I think that in order to even think about having an abortion, to give up a child that is obviously unwanted, that’s why you’re doing it, it is such a tremendous decision, it’s involved with so much fear of what you’re doing, and guilt. 

Then to have to go and be forced to hear, to see the fetus, to hear the heartbeat, to put more guilt on you, I think is heartbreaking.”

So it’s all about how the woman feels, not about bringing harm to someone else? Notice her reference to “a child.” That’s no longer in question like it used to be. Now people admit it’s a child. They have to because it’s so clearly proven by the in utero technology we now have. But that doesn’t seem to matter. The message given on The View is that what really matters is what the woman wants. What selfishness! As a woman, I take great offense at these statements because they imply that what’s most important to a woman is how she feels, not what is true. “She shouldn’t be given all the facts, because that might make her feel guilty. After all, we must avoid guilt at all cost!” This undermines the strength of a woman and her ability to deal with what is true and to make wise choices in light of that truth.

And why is this such a “tremendous decision”? Why does it involve fear and guilt? Because this isn’t just another medical procedure like having your gall bladder removed. It involves another human being, a life that God ordained from the beginning of time. “For you created my inmost being, you knit me together in my mother’s womb” (Ps. 139:13).

Jesus said, “It is more blessed to give than to receive” (Acts 20:35). “Love your neighbor as yourself” (Matt. 22:39). It is always in the best interest of the woman to give life and to love another human being. That love might be expressed in the form of relinquishing her baby for adoption into a loving home or choosing to parent. But it will never be expressed by taking the life of her unborn child.

“Do not be wise in your own eyes; fear the Lord and shun evil. This will bring health to your body and nourishment to your bones” (Prov. 3:7).

 -Kathy Norquist, Executive Assistant to Randy Alcorn
http://www.epm.org/blog/2012/Mar/28/women-need-support-and-truth-not-abortion