With the passing of another law, the abortion debate rears its ugly head once more. Ideologues with binary minds on both side of the debate come out shouting down any questions, and in particular the regressive left arc up at any suggestion that an unborn child has rights that ought to be considered too.
The common crap we get to enjoy includes classics like:
“If you’re not a woman, you’re not entitled to an opinion.”
“Her body, her choice.”
“It’s just a clump of cells, mind your own business!”
And from the other side:
“Women who abort babies should be jailed!”
“Doctors who abort babies should be hanged!”
“Anyone who kills an innocent baby is going to hell.”
It’s complicated. It’s yucky. It’s a conversation that NEEDS to be elevated out of the ideological gutter.
Some of my thoughts, which of course are just thoughts, not claims of absolute truth, just considerations that ought to be introduced to aid a more peaceful dialogue on the topic:
Anyone who claims to know when a child becomes a person is lying. We don’t even know what personhood really is. The recent NPC meme beautifully highlights the fact that you could argue that some, if not most, grown adults don’t actually display the characteristics of personal agency: the ability to generate original thoughts, to resist social programming, to shape and mould themselves; self-mastery. If we can’t even be sure that we and the people around us are really whole human beings, and not just meat machines chasing dopamine, then we certainly don’t know what personhood is, or where it begins or ends. We should stop claiming to be sure about things we know nothing about.
Premature babies can live from 22 weeks, and of course the smaller they are, the more vulnerable they are to the innumerable ways a child can die. A wall of flesh between the world and the child is not sufficient to say that it is not a human being. Vaginas are amazing, beautiful things, but they are not God – they do not bestow personhood. A baby is a baby in the womb as much as it is a baby in the world.
It is plainly obviously that a child is ALIVE from the moment of conception. Sperm and eggs are alive before that. Of course, the parts are not the whole, and deciding when a living creature gains personhood is such a complicated and, frankly, God-like power, that no mere mortal, medical expert or not, is fit for the job. Life and consciousness are not the same thing.
I believe that aborting babies IS murder, but murder is not absolutely evil all the time, nor is it unforgivable, nor should we demonise every single person who has committed murder. I know people who have killed. People kill in war, in self defence, in acts of violent passion. People kill other people for all sorts of reasons; some malevolent or evil, some tragic or in error, some righteous. My favourite book of the Bible, Ecclesiastes (a book that every father ought to read), teaches us in timeless wisdom that: “To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven: A time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up that which is planted; A time to kill, and a time to heal…” Sometimes killing is necessary. Sometimes it is not, but even the mass murderer, if truly repentant, deserves forgiveness. We should absolutely not endanger the community by trusting such a person again, but we can try to forgive them.
We should be arming women so that they can protect themselves against rape before we start promoting abortions as an appropriate solution to unwanted pregnancies. Women who get raped probably have the best reason of all to abort a child, and I have nothing but compassion for their terrible plight. I would be very careful judging a rape victim who can’t bear to birth the offspring of the man who defiled her. I would prefer it if she wasn’t raped. Universal gun rights are one possible solution to lowering the risk of rape in the west. There are less extreme options too, but we seem to be throwing them all out. Women can’t even carry pepperspray in this country anymore. Our politicians are RAPE-ENABLERS.
A woman getting pregnant to a dipshit boyfriend who she knows would be a terrible father is NOT adequate reason to kill a child, and yet we are teaching girls that it’s just clearing out some unwanted cells, and not to worry about it. The culture around sex and women in the West today is the single most destructive force to civilisation we have ever seen. Don’t believe me? Look at how many babies have been aborted in the last 50 years. It likely exceeds the murderousness of Communism, hard as that is to imagine. Also, ask yourself if gender relations are better or worse today than they were 100 years ago? Sure, women have more rights, but are men and women collaborating more peacefully, lovingly, and productively, or not? We need to teach girls to choose their boyfriends wisely, to see sex as sacred, to encourage chastity in women AND men until marriage ideally, and for both men and women to take every precaution possible to avoid unwanted pregnancies. Every abortion is a tragedy, and we should not make light of them.
I don’t think we should make abortion illegal, even though I do believe that it is murder. It’s such a tough call, but my instinct tells me that punishing people who are victims of faulty or even satanic teaching doesn’t fix the situation. I don’t think any woman takes pleasure in getting an abortion, at least not in the moment that it happens. We need to call out women like Oprah who glorify the murderous act, and we need to let women know that they can do it, yes, it’s their body and their choice, but it is also murder, and it is morally wrong. We need to change the culture to one of PREVENTION, not murderous “repair”, and that happens through nuanced conversation, through teaching of objective morality, universality, faith in God, and through highly selective sexuality.
You don’t need to be a woman to be entitled to an opinion about the fate of the unborn. See, I have opinions too, and I’m not a woman! Don’t think I should voice them? You are cordially invite to piss off, then If you’re happy to engage, you are certainly welcome to rebut any of my thoughts, and please know that because I am not a leftist/rightist ideological NPC, I am open to changing my mind. I didn’t always think this way about abortion. My mind is changeable with new information. Let’s talk about it. Maybe we’ll both learn something.
Yes, women deserve to live in a world where they won’t be raped by strangers or their husbands, and they deserve to have control over their bodies. Men deserve to not be demonised for trying to protect the babies of the world. Trust me girls, if you knew what it was like living in uncivilised times, you might be grateful that the male instinct to protect the young is so strong! Male strength and protection built civilisation, alongside female nurturing and compassion. Expecting women to take sole responsibility for the sexual freedom irrevocably granted to them by technology and modernity, is the same “passing the buck” game that Adam played in the Garden of Eden. Men taking responsibility is the answer. It always was.
Children also deserve to be safe from the murderous hands of confused or mislead mothers, and opportunistic doctors. Every subset of humankind who has ever been oppressed or enslaved has been done so by dehumanising propaganda. Blacks were considered subhuman, or at least vastly inferior, so they were slaves. Women were considered hysterical, irrational beings, and so they could be controlled. Babies are still considered clumps of cells, so they can be erased without guilt. Every one of these groups, save the last, was set free because enough brave people spoke up and changed the culture. Law and politics are downstream from culture. Let’s talk about this, and see if we can’t change the culture, and save millions of lives, and at the same time spare women the torture and torment of doing something so awful as killing their unborn.
Dr. Seuss said it best in his classic examination of human rights, Horton Hears a Who:
Don’t give up! I believe in you all. A person’s a person, no matter how small!
And you very small persons will not have to die
If you make yourselves heard! So come on, now, and TRY!”
“This”, cried the Mayor, “is your town’s darkest hour!
The time for all Whos who have blood that is red
To come to the aid of their country!”, he said.
“We’ve GOT to make noises in greater amounts!
So, open your mouth, lad! For every voice counts!
Well, the unborn have no voices, yet. They are muted by the womb that was designed to protect and nurture them. We need to speak on their behalf. So let’s do that, and try not to be assholes about it, if possible.