Abortion Religion Religious Right

Abortion: Right & Left vs Right & Wrong

1) It is repulsive to me to hear the phrase “lump of tissue” used of the developing human in a woman’s womb. You know, if it’s true of the fetus, it’s probably also true of the child and the adult.

“You are an accidentally united little lump of something” is what Tolstoy was hearing from the culture around him over a century ago. We can choose, as Tolstoy did, to reject that idea and see ourselves as more than just a “little lump of something.” Then we (and others) can be seen as worth attention, protection, honor, and development. Many of us see dogs, cats, cattle, and spotted owls as worth that much. Should we not extend that judgment of intrinsic worth to developing fellow-humans?

2) But I am at least as deeply disturbed by the way the political “right” misuses this issue to promote it’s anti-life and anti-freedom agenda. They get political power by defending the rights of the preborn, then use their power to destroy the protections, rights, and opportunities of the newborn, the recently born, the long ago born, the foreign born, etc. Then they want to spread that around the globe. Sometimes I think they intend, like the old imperial Romans, to “make a desolation, and call it peace.”

Talk about the old rock and hard place. The “left” is anti-life in an important way. The “right” is more extensively anti-life. Go left – wrong. Go right – wrong. If I sit in the middle, I’m just as wrong. It’s not convenient, but as Christians we cannot ignore anti-life behaviors of whatever type promoted by whatever group.

Rescue those being led away to death;
hold back those staggering toward slaughter.
If you say, “But we knew nothing about this,”
does not he who weighs the heart perceive it?
Does not he who guards your life know it?
Will he not repay each person according to what he has done?”
Proverbs 24:11,12

3) This is not easy. But I tell you, my conviction is that the “right”, including not least the “Christian right”, has become much more deeply implicated in anti-life behavior, and in fundamental dishonesty and hypocrisy, than those who have generally supported the Democratic party over the years. That’s a big part of the reason for this website and the deliberately political articles posted on it.

It’s difficult to support candidates who speak of the imaginary “woman’s right to choose;” but at least they are often doing so in good faith. Of course many pro-life activists also operate in good faith. But many do not, and the Scriptural saying has become true of them, “The name of God is blasphemed because of you.” In general the so-called “right” has been very dishonest and Machiavellian in recent years, and has a very dangerous agenda, and thus has forced a lot of us who are devoted Christians – and pro-life – to the unpleasant ambiguity of vigorously supporting “pro-choice” candidates.

“When a man steals to satisfy hunger, we may safely conclude
that there is something wrong in society –
so when a woman destroys the life of her unborn child, it is an evidence that
either by education or circumstances
she has been greatly wronged.”
— Mattie Brinkerhoff, “The Revolution”, September 2, 1869
(thanks to Feminists for Life)

 

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9 Comments

  • When are we going to hear a little more concern for the adult women who have had abortion – the age of accountability? We hear all concern for the babies who have gone on, but is there a fundamentalist who will deny that the souls of babies are in God’s hands?

    Yet women are being used by the fundamentalist right for political grandstanding. And the same women, who need healing, are being driven from churches because they have become shaming environments for post-abortion women.

    Here’s a slightly fictionalized account (to conceal the victim’s identity from media scrutiny) of fundamentalist abuse of a woman – but the story is true:

    So I called a certain pastor to inquire whether his evangelical congregation would be a safe place to bring Lucy for worship, on account of her abortion. Lucy loves the Lord Jesus in a pure way, as much as anyone, every inch the born again Christian any evangelical congregation might welcome. All except for the problem about her abortion, an issue which has become an extremely popular object of U.S. Christian vituperative from the pulpit. I explained to the pastor how Lucy had suffered in an automobile accident as an infant, which rendered her somewhat mentally impaired – permanently in an eerily passive state of distraction. She became pregnant from what amounted to an easy rape in her early teens, whereupon her family railroaded her in for an abortion. Because of her mental condition, in early adulthood Lucy spent years bouncing in and out of mental institutions and the U.S. medical system under miscellaneous psychological diagnoses. She was administered a constant variety psychotropic drugs which further compromised her mental stability. When she started going to church, Lucy was unable to resist the pernicious doctrine she heard among certain fundamentalists, who told her that her abortion was unforgivable. Lucy’s response was to engage in suicidal behavior, hospitalization, homelessness, finally finding safe harbor in a good halfway home. While her reading skills are adequate, some of her symptoms mimic schizophrenia – she lacks emotional and mental boundaries. Lucy can not hear anyone fulminating about abortion from the pulpit without taking it personally. In a church setting, she is incapable of sophisticated discernment when her symptoms are at their worst. No one who knows Lucy would risk her misplacement in the wrong congregation again.

    The pastor went to great lengths to explain to me why his church would be safe for Lucy, saying other women in his midst have been through abortion and could be of support. Lucy‘s story, the pastor’s ostensible worst case scenario of causing one of Jesus’ little ones to stumble, seemed to blindside him as well as the secretary who first answered my call. He did almost all the talking. If he was not coining a new species of Christian apologetics towards women as he spoke, it sounded entirely fresh to me. It was good to have the entire evangelical interrogation game play out in third person, on the other side of the court for a change.

    Because what I didn’t tell the pastor was that Lucy was my litmus test. As a believer who had been through abortion, if a believing community is unsafe for Lucy, it is also unsafe for me.

    Of course, “Lucy” is not her name, and her biography is more harrowing than it now reads, for I would not embarrass my friends or subject them to hurtful media exposure. This is, after all, the United States, where so-called Christians humiliate, revile and kill strangers and fellow believers alike over the now inflammatory issue of abortion. If anyone would be hurt by the telling of her story, let it be anyone but “Lucy.” She has suffered enough. Or is there a sincere Christian who can say that “Lucy’s” account was not settled through the cross?

  • Abortion is right when you have young girls throwing babies out of windows and doing things of that sort because their parents don’t believe in abortions explain that.

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