3 More Myths About Pro-Lifers, And How To Refute Them

 

Really? Did you ask him?

Recently I wrote an article in which I described five misconceptions commonly held about the pro-life movement. In the past few days, I’ve had readers bring up a few more I recognized, and I’ve had abortion advocates remind me of a few as well. Here they are:

3. We don’t care about children once they’re born.

Anybody who’s ever argued the pro-life point of view has encountered this rejoinder: “What about all those babies whose parents don’t want them? And then they end up being neglected and abused? Huh? What about that?”

I always have to pause at this point and take a deep breath, because what the abortion apologist does here is advocate child abuse as a way to avoid child abuse. They’re saying, “In order to keep this baby from being harmed, let’s harm it until it’s dead.”

Abortion kills a child. Child killing is the ultimate form of child abuse.

Here’s how I like to handle the argument above. I get really quiet. I nod thoughtfully. I say, “You know, I never thought about it that way… You’ve really made me see something here. I mean that child might be neglected, abused, even killed…. So… You’re right… Why not just go ahead and kill it before it’s born? Saves time and money… And it’s legal!”

Child abuse is a tragedy, wherever and whenever it occurs. We do not live in a world where every child is wanted, but we can live in a world where every child has a chance at life.

There is nothing we can do to end all child abuse, just as there is nothing we can do to end all murder, stealing, or any other crime. People will always hurt each other. But many people, from Beethoven to Oprah Winfrey, have had terrible childhoods full of abuse and neglect and gone on to not only lead successful lives, but even change the world.

I was visiting a pro-life friend once, back when I was pro-abortion, when I saw a cartoon stuck to her refrigerator door. It showed a man standing in a field, yelling up to the clouds. He was saying, “God, why don’t you send us a doctor who can cure cancer and AIDS, a scientist who can show us how to feed all the hungry, and leaders who can help us bring peace to the world?”

And from the clouds a voice answered him, saying, “I already did. You aborted them.”

2. We don’t care about women.

As I’ve mentioned before, I was an agnostic when I became pro-life. I hated becoming pro-life. I fancied myself a liberal feminist, so it caused an identity crisis. But I was committed to the truth I had discovered. I became an activist almost immediately, and I discovered a pro-life community in my city. I was gung-ho to save the lives of fetuses, but what I found was a network of people devoted to pregnant women.

I found out what a crisis pregnancy center was. I joined the Gabriel Angels, a ministry of the Catholic Pro-Life Committee that trains women to mentor mothers experiencing crisis pregnancies and help make sure their physical and spiritual needs are met. Every few days — sometimes more often — an email would be sent: Stacy needs diapers, Amber needs a ride to her doctor’s appointment, Vanessa needs to move out of her boyfriend’s apartment so who can donate furniture? And so on.

I saw firsthand the work of the pro-life community. It was more than protesting, sidewalk counseling, and praying. It was laundromat, taxi service, babysitter, counselor, friend. These women were not abandoned when their babies were born. Far from it.

By the way, all these things done for pregnant women all over the country by pro-lifers are done for free. Go into a pregnancy center and you will get a free pregnancy test, a free ultrasound, free adoption counseling, free help filling out insurance paperwork, and pretty much anything you need to see that the needs of you and your baby are met, up to and including a place to live.

Go into a “women’s health” clinic and ask for a free abortion. See how that works out.

And before you start screaming in the comments that abortion should be free, please note that by “free” I mean “provided by volunteers out of the goodness of their hearts,” not “forcibly provided by the taxpayer.”

The best way to refute this argument is to to tell them about the volunteer work you’ve done or witnessed. Tell them the lengths to which pro-lifers will go to take care of women and their children, born and pre-born.

Here in Dallas, there is an abortion clinic on the service road of a major highway, right next door to a crisis pregnancy center. They share a wall.  My friend Destiny’s idea for a protest was to stand outside the pregnancy center with signs bearing hearts, and stand next door outside the abortion clinic with signs bearing dollar signs. That says it all.

1. We’re fighting for a lost cause.

Many legal experts, even famously liberal ones like Alan Dershowitz, have criticized the Roe v. Wade decision. Pro-abortion Yale law professor John Hart Ely said:

What is frightening about Roe is that this super-protected right is not inferable from the language of the Constitution, the framers’ thinking respecting the specific problem in issue, any general value derivable from the provisions they included, or the nation’s governmental structure.

Washington Examiner article by Tim Carney gives several examples of pro-abortion attorneys, judges, and legal scholars who think the Roe decision was simply bad law.

Some pro-life advocates believe the only way abortion will end is a court decision overturning Roe v. Wade, while some believe there has to be another way, and others point out even an end to Roe would not mean an end to legal abortion in some states.

No one can tell you right this second exactly how it will happen. We can’t see the future. But what you must know, and should communicate to pro-aborts if they tell you debate is closed, is that there are literally millions of people in this country who will not rest until the lives of the unborn are protected by law. As of 2009, more Americans identified themselves as pro-life than pro-choice, and by continuing to be vocal, unapologetic, and proactive, we can grow that number.

We win an essential and priceless battle every time a woman chooses life, and no matter how long it takes to win the legal war, we will not stop fighting.

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Kristen Walker makes people mad on the Internet and sometimes tweets.

47 thoughts on “3 More Myths About Pro-Lifers, And How To Refute Them

  1. A point of correction, many PP affiliates provide some or all of their services on a sliding scale based on a clients ability to pay. Funds from donations are kept that are used to offset costs for clients who can’t afford them otherwise. Also the last time I looked, the stats usually cited to support the idea that more Americans are pro-life looked only at people who identified themselves in that way. However, when asked if they believed abortion should be available in any case ie some but not all cases most Americans say that they do. Finally, I would say one myth that many in the pro-life movement do seem to hold is one that says everyone agrees on when life begins. We don’t.

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    1. You don’t have to agree upon when life begins. It’s an irrefutable scientific fact, and has been for years. Don’t confuse science with politics, the truth doesn’t change with majority opinion. Abortion kills a human being. You can think that’s a terrible tragedy or that it’s perfectly fine and dandy, but it’s still true.

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      1.   If it were only that simple, but science can’t tell us precisely what life is much less when it begins.  Part of the problem is that science just isn’t equipped to answer the question.  It’s passably adequate at measuring and describing processes in the observable universe, but it can’t give those processes meaning or tell us why they are as they are.  If you think a beating heart and body parts qualify as life, then okay.  But you should understand that some don’t find those qualities convincing.  Where ever you decide the threshold lies, you make that judgment as an act of faith.   After all, the question we’d all really like science to answer for us is what is the weight of a soul and to our disappointment it is notably silent on that question.
          The other part of the problem is the limit of our vocabulary to talk about what life is.  A fire can be said to have life.  A virus can have life.  A collection of cells, even ones that are cancerous can have life.  But most of us would not say that that is what we mean when we say a human has life.  That is simply a question each of us has to answer according to our own lights and understanding.

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        1. Sometimes we don’t need science to help us understand the true meaning of life. Science doesn’t support the understanding of having a soul. It is known to be a collection of experience and memory that make us who we are. We weren’t the same person we were when we were children. Life is a growth cycle, and ends when it is ultimately aborted. Abortion is not only when babies are die in the womb, but also when life stops at any age. If it is either 1 year, 10 years 20 years, 50 years… I’m sure you catch the point. 
          Everything that has living cells is alive. Yes a virus is alive, doesn’t compare to a human life though. Two are completely different. I’m sure a virus doesn’t have the same learning capability that a human does. Cancerous cells are definitely not comparable to human life either. So ultimately my point is that when you talk about human life and when it begins, it is ignorant to compare it to a virus that has living cells or cancer that has a collection of cells. 
          Sometimes abortion is inevitable. My baby died of a spontaneous abortion (miscarriage) at 4 months. My child was very much a human life. His perfect human form was undeniable. The truth is the truth, and hiding the truth with lies, is ignorance. Child-abuse abortion on the other hand is wrong and should not be encouraged. Life should be encouraged, not terminated. ( I am not referring to cancer cell life, or virus life.)

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          1. Esmeralda – I’m sorry for your loss.  My heart goes out to you.  Your hope is a strength to us all and gives our lives perspective.

          2. Sparky says: “If it were only that simple, but science can’t tell us precisely what life is much less when it begins.” That’s a pro-choice MYTH. Here, read up on what world class embryological scientists have to say, dispense ignorance from your mind: http://www.westchesterinstitute.net/resources/white-papers/351-white-paper

          3. I guess I would just say two things in reply.  I am not saying that fertilization does not mark the beginning of life or that it is somehow not human.  What I am saying is that there is a point somewhere after fertilization and before birth where that life attains a quality that would cause us to say it enjoys rights separate from its mother and that none of us knows exactly where that point lies.  The second thing I would say is that if you are looking for unbiased scientific information you might also look in places other than ones in which the words “Anchored in the classic perennial and Catholic view of the human person, our moral inquires are first and foremost of a scholarly nature”  appear in the mission statement.

          4. Sparky,
            If you are not saying, “fertilization does not mark the beginning of life or that it is somehow not humnan” then why do you say “there is a point somewhere after fertilization and before birth where life attains a quality human being will have attained a quality that would cause us to say it enjoys separate rights from it’s mother at fertilization”? At that point when it becomes a separate human life (fertilization), we don’t have the right to decide whether or not the life has quality. It has quality simply because it is a separate human life. And what follows is that it has the right to life that any other innocent human being does. Also, on your second point– there are sources which are probably less biased than others, but you do have to remember that everyone is biased in some way, whether they are actually right or not.

          5. Yes we are all biased.  It’s our challenge to rise above the bias we have.

          6. Sparky says “that there is a point somewhere after fertilization and before birth where that life attains a quality that would cause us to say it enjoys rights separate from its mother and that none of us knows exactly where that point lies.”
            “Quality” and “rights” pertaining to human beings, are not “attained”, but rather inherent in their very existence. In other words, that “point somewhere after fertilization and before birth” IS at the moment of fertilization. Otherwise, we are opening a Pandora’s box of moral relativism.

          7. I say throw the lid open!  We can not know truth unless we examine it.

          8. Esmeralda, I’m sorry for your loss.  Those words seem so small.  I hope that you find peace through helping others and that another little soul who needs you comes your way one way or another. 

        2. Hey Sparky,
          Your attitude towards science and when life begins begs the question, if the unborn isn’t a life or isn’t a human, what else could it be?  Humans only produce humans and life only comes from life, so if one is going to argue that it is not a life they need to be able to explain what else it could be and if you don’t know what it is then why would you risk killing it?   

          Biologists are generally agreed about a new life starting at conception, but even if they weren’t, how does it follow that it should be okay to kill the unborn because we can’t prove it’s human.  In abortion, either an unborn human being is killed or it isn’t. You have to decide whether or not that matters to you and if it’s worth the risk to kill them.

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          1. Good questions.  And you make some interesting points.  But let me first clarify that I was not arguing that the unborn does not exhibit life or that it is not human.  Obviously both points are true.  The point that I was making is that we apply the label of life to a number things but that we make certain distinctions between them.   The short answer, for me, is that it’s complicated.   And it’s complicated because the difference between what we would call an individual human life and a collection of cells lies outside the processes that make up those systems.  My finger is living, and it’s human and although you didn’t raise this issue, in theory at least, it has all it needs to generate a separate individual being.  But what interests does it have, separate from my own that would cause us to feel compelled to weigh its interests against the interest of others?   Now you might say my finger shares my exact DNA and, therefore, its interests can’t be separate from my own.  You might be right about that, but as studies of human chimera suggest, that isn’t necessarily the case.  What would we say about those cases?   But in the end, I don’t think it matters because the real point is that what makes us separate beings with rights and interests is more than our individual parts and processes.
            Your second point, if I understand it, is harder to answer.  The question I think you’re asking is if there is potential for being wrong, then why not error on the side of caution.  In some situations that can be the wise course to take.  But generally when it’s applicable it is accompanied by the phrase “all things being equal”.   But of course, in this case, and in fact in most cases in which one must choose one action over another, all things are not equal.  There are risks and benefits in everything we do.  I would simply ask whether it’s necessary to ignore one when considering the other.   It’s also true that in some situations one may seem overwhelmingly to outweigh the other, but in all situations that’s a judgment call, and then we’re on to the question of who has standing to make that judgment.   In order for the state to intervene or anyone else for that matter, we need to establish that two parties exist who have conflicting interests.  And, as I have tried to suggest, the point at which that occurs is not exactly clear.

        3. What we are talking about is scientific life, the embryo/fetus/zygote exhibits all the characteristics required to be alive and it is also undeniably human for reasons that JB stated as well as genetically. Fire is not alive by the scientific standard. But what you refer to is “life” in the philosophical sense. As in some one that spends a majority of their time trolling on the internet would not have a “life” but they would have life by the scientific standard. This is where the arguments differ, usually it is differentiated between life/human and the idea of personhood – so that we can skip the whole is it alive, is it human dimension. The “life” aspect matters little to pro-lifers, the condition and values of someones’s life should not be determined by others but the idea that all human life is valuable and to be respected regardless of it’s condition is the heart of the position. 

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          1. “The “life” aspect matters little to pro-lifers”
            Really?  Are you suggesting the movement should be renamed The Pro- oh whatever?

          2. No the philosophical or the qualitative contingencies are what matters little – human life (meaning a human that is alive) is to be protected regardless of the quality. That is the life part. 

          3. See the switching of the term life was done again probably unnoticed by you, because your view point focuses on the philosophical term for life. You stated such about to Sonny Ramirez, that a human must have certain qualities about them to be considered human or a person. So that is the heart of the issue really is it not? That is where we depart so it is not that you are debating wether it is scientifically human or whether it is scientifically alive we do actually agree on that- but about the subjective qualities of human life. You say that is what enables to human beings to have rights and pro-lifers say that they are inconsequential.

          4. I think you have it exactly right.  But I would, respectfully disagree on one point.  The Pro-Life movement and the Pro-Choice movement are the very definition of philosophy.  We have been discussing this issue ever since some schmoe firgured out how to rub two sticks together to generate fire.  And we’re all in it. 🙂

          5. I think we should change it to anti-abortion… ’cause we are. I am completely anti-abortion and I don’t think we should mind that name at all.

          6. i think that the term “pro-life” is appropriate because this movement is not JUST about abortion.

          7. Sparky I think Briana was referring to the different forms of life you keep bringing up. Even if you have different ideas about what is alive, is something will be alive at one point it doesnt matter if you think it isn’t alive at the moment, because if you let it, it will be a baby,a young child and eventually and an adult.You can see that it is alive.

    2. If you chose any point after consecption and you are wrong God calls it murder.  I don’t want to be wrong on this one.

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    3. What Pro-Lifer says that everyone agrees on when life begins? If people are pro-abortion they obviously believe that life does not begin until birth right? Or do they believe that fetuses are alive but we should be able to murder them anyway?

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      1. A common pro-choice response is to avoid answering the question, “when does life begin?” in regards to prenatal human development. Ignorance is bliss.

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    4. What does PP offer when a woman wants to keep her baby?  People also disagreed at one time if blacks were fully human and we had laws that said they weren’t.  Medical science says life begins at conception.  It’s not just an opinion.  

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  2. Kristen – Articulate message with a dash of whimsy and a pinch of  sarcastic irreverence regarding the absurd. Love it. Just gives me warm fuzzies – right down to the tag line…’Kristen Walker makes people mad on the Internet and sometimes tweets.’ (I know you were just waiting on pins and needles for my opinion.) Regards…

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  3. Thanks for this article-some people will always argue one persons rights trump another by stating, “they’re not human!” Same ole argument, different century. Pulease-next!!!! By the way I accidentally ‘liked’ a post by a supporter of legalized abortion-couldn’t find an unlike button. These dang iPhones are so tiny, reply and like are too close together-keep up the fantastic work Kristen!

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    1. we do know when life begins ana. Biology is crystal clear that at the moment of conception, a unique organism comes into existence. Since this new life possesses human DNA and is the offspring of human parents, it can legitimately only be described as human life.
      Since there can be no question that human zygotes, embryos and fetuses are alive, some have attempted to claim that human beings are not “persons,” until some threshold is crossed, such as viability, the capacity to feel pain, birth, or even the first year after birth. The merits of such notions can be debated, but it should be clear that they are not based on science but rather on ideology, philosophy or belief.
      As far as observable science is concerned, human life begins at conception.

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      1. “Personhood” is a legal term. Technically, a fetus is not a person because the government has not ruled that they are. 

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        1. Personhood is not a legal term.  Personhood is a made-up term by the pro-aborts.  Who is to decide what determines personhood?  Who would you trust to decide what determines personhood?  Should it be based on age, size, physical abilities?  How about skin color or creed?

          No legal rights should be attached to “personhood” because you can not define what that is.

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  4. My local right to life has a  Mother’s Assistance Fund that you can give donations to.  It helps them with rent and other things.  My Church has an Advent Giving Wreath every year before Christmas and I picked up baby bottles, formula and Size 3 diapers to donate.   So, we DO care about the women before AND after they have their babies.   We don’t completely abandon them.

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  5. I think every child is a ‘wanted’ child. Even if every single woman who had had an abortion this past year released her child for adoption instead, there would still be thousands of people on adoption waiting lists still waiting.  It is the same principal that we actually have enough food to feed every person in the world, it just a distribution problem. To use that as an excuse is ridiculously near sighted and almost blantantly inflamatory and misdirective.

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    1. And there would still be thousands of kids in the foster care system. Most (notice I said most not all) parents want to adopt young kids/babies, and so many older children/teens are left in the system.

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      1. Many (if not most) of the children in the foster care system were wanted at birth, but were given up or taken away by social services later because their home environment became dangerous. And yes, a lot of people do want to adopt younger children so they can have more time being part of their lives. While adopting older children is certainly wonderful too, is wanting a younger child really an unfair thing to want?

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  6. Abortion is one of those thing’s that really depends on perception.  This is why it should be kept at the state level.  Because no matter who you are you will have a different opinion then everyone else.
      I look at it from both sides.  From a science perspective life begins when the sperm meets the egg and this is one position that I hold but I am the child of very bad parents and I would rather my mother had got an abortion and I never existed.  That to me would be much better then a life of torture and misery.  My brain is fried.  I have been through so much as a child I can never be happy.  The only thing that keeps me from slaughtering every person I see is my wife and child and the hope that my wife and child will have a better life then I.  Personally I hate humans and I could kill them without remorse or emotion.
      So from my other prospective:  It is better to die in the womb then to live life in HELL.

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    1. I will agree with you that life does begin at conception. I do have a question in regards to Sparky’s point of when human life actually comes about. We live in a world where one can be sent to jail for killing a lesser life form, such as a dog, endangered animal, and etc. Why do these lesser life forms enjoy protection  while a fetus/embryo (assuming that they are rationalized as just being lesser life form) can be destroyed legally?

      Also, in regards to JD, I too grew up in an abusive household as well. I had my fair share of alcohol and drug abuse because of it. I can sympathize to a certain extent. I used to share the same desire to end everything, but my way of getting through each day is knowing that I can one day do the opposite. It is my desire to one day father a child and give it the world I should have had.

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    2.      What does your child see, JD, when he or she looks at you?  From what you said, you don’t hate everyone.  You love your wife and child.  You want better for them.  That’s love.  Your wife sees better in you than you see in yourself, and I have to believe that she knew that you weren’t perfect, but YOU WERE THE ONE SHE WANTED TO SPEND TIME WITH AND MARRY.  Every giggle, smile, special moment you get is a gift to you from your child.  You are precious to both of them.  Your child sees Daddy and will never have the life you had growing up; you will see to that.  A daddy and husband who isn’t perfect but is dedicated to trying to make a better life for his loved ones, that is who you are.
           I know that I have not been able to meet you.  If you think that I am wrong, then please show this post to your wife.  Ask her if I described her husband.  I think that I did.

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  7. I think that that the bigger problem is that there are myths about the pro-life mission. In order for the pro-life mission to  gain any ground it must be as transparent as possible and it must emphasize its mission to help women and infants. This goal has a tendancy to become lost within the rhetoric.  This is why the other side has an easy time exploiting it and  turning it into a “myth”. Also in order to gain any ground with the issue we must come to understand that both sides are committed to helping women, the pro-choice side as the advantage of a “quick fix” that is easier than raising a child or placing the baby up for adoption. In order to preserve life we must show that the pro-life movement is doing its part to help women will help show others more clearly the truth of our side. The pro-life movement must also committ itself to the prevention of unwanted pregnancies through education and reform of our culture; which in my opinion is overtly sexual.

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    1. It is a relief to hear someone in the “pro-life” movement mention the need to prevent unwanted pregnancies.

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  8. Ironic how the woman pictured wrote “baby” on her stomach. I guess unborn children magically become babies if and only if they are ‘wanted’. Idiots.

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  9. I have a question for all the “Pro-Lifers,” What if its a rape victim baby? Im not trying to start a fight I just want to hear your opinions

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    1. Many people disagree on this issue; some believe that abortion is okay in this instance while many believe abortion is only okay if the mother’s life is in danger. Then there are others still who believe abortion is never okay. 

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  10. The adoption system is imperfect, definitely. That’s not to say that we should just throw out that option. There are a lot more things that go along with the illegalization of abortion to consider as well. The cost of adoption in itself is a big deterrent, and something that should definitely be reconsidered.

    -pro life, pro active-

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  11. Thank you.  I feel so proud to be among those that whole-heartedly agree with what you have written here.  Sometimes it seems that we are looked upon as too radical and illogical in our hopeful perspective. I value life as that which our creator gave us out of His love for us and who are we to spit in the face of that gift by taking the life of any other human being.            Remaining hopeful……….. Ginnie F.

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