Recently, Democratic Senator and Presidential hopeful Kristen Gillibrand equated pro-life beliefs with racism. This is of a piece with the emerging progressive narrative that deems traditional religious believers bigots, loony fanatics, and science deniers.
Unfortunately, it plays well in a broad swath of America.
With respect to the rights of women, Gillibrand and her most strident pro-choice allies think of an unwanted fetus as no more than an appendage, like a finger or an inconvenient mole. And it goes without saying that men are at least as responsible for the pro-choice crusade as women.
Catholics and many other Christians know there are pro-life religious and natural law arguments, but what do science, reason, and the classic liberal perspective of broadening human rights suggest?
There’s no denying that pregnancy is a difficult and frightening time for many. Those in distress deserve the support of family, friends, and communities, an altogether different matter than justifying abortion on the grounds that the opposite (pro-life) view is bigoted and narrow-minded.
Is the pro-choice crusade—and the charge that those with pro-life beliefs are bigots—demonstrated by the evidence, by what science tells us, by what reason and history reveal? Before embarking, I remind myself that whatever is said should enlighten and edify rather than accuse and stigmatize, or I am nothing but “a resounding gong or a clashing symbol”.
1) From the earliest stage, the fetus possesses unique human DNA, not a different “creature” that gradually becomes human, as many believed in the past.
2) With advancement in the medical sciences the fetus can survive outside the womb at earlier and earlier ages.
3) Wouldn’t you expect the “racist” pro-life view to disproportionately eliminate minorities via abortion? Instead, it is the pro-choice crusade that’s producing this outcome.
4) In a practical sense, the fetus is no more of an “appendage” than a three-month old infant that’s totally dependent on its caregivers.
5) Every woman making this choice was herself once a fetus, entirely dependent on her own mother for continued life.
6) Science has demonstrated that cognitive activity is occurring and pain is being experienced by the fetus sooner than we ever expected.
7) Aborting based on fetal defects ignores the evidence that many untreatable defects a few generations ago can now be ameliorated or cured. Medical science keeps advancing.
8) The denial of rights/legal standing to a fetus opens the door to denial of rights/ standing to any human being dependent on others for their continued survival, highlighted by a recent statement by Virginia Governor Ray Northam about post-birth termination of life.
9) Liberals claim to broaden the definition of human rights, but the pro-choice crusade narrows these rights to fewer biological humans, a narrowing of rights that favors the powerful, wealthy, and well educated.
10) In developed countries such as America, a pregnant mother’s health is rarely a matter of life and death, while aborting a fetus means death 100% of the time.
11) Though cloaked in words and terms including “choice”, “freedom”, “gender equality”, and “reproductive justice”, abortion is a big business, with much money to be made.
12) Finally, the widespread assertion that pro-lifers only care about “forcing” women to not have abortions and actually have no concern for the baby once born is both deflective and contrary to the evidence.
This is what science, medicine, reason, history, evidence, and facts tell us. Inconvenient truths for “scientifically enlightened” and “rational” liberal lions like Senator Gillibrand.
In a world where many human beings do bad things and where some environmental activists paint people as the “enemies” of nature, it’s easy to succumb to the belief that we’d be better off with far fewer human beings. But, cosmically speaking, we have yet to discover evidence of life anywhere else in this one hundred billion-galaxy universe, and examining life on Earth, only humans possess the questing, seeking, creative awareness to decipher some of the deepest secrets of the universe. Without people, the splendor and mysteries of Earth, and of the universe, would go unappreciated and unexplored. In sum, choices matter more than many of us think.
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