OPINION: Abortion is not just another social issue

abortion, ultrasound, pregnancy

Perspective is an amazing thing. At times, it can jolt us into action and instantly wipe away the fog of a multitude of voices to clear our paths and focus our vision. Yet perspective is what seems to be lacking as various religious leaders, pastors, and politicians discuss the various important topics surrounding abortion. Some insist the “pro-life” label must embrace a litany of social issues beyond abortion.

Tragically, while these discussions take place, many have lost sight of what is really at stake: millions of human beings, hanging in the balance between life and death in their mothers’ wombs.

WARNING: Graphic image below.

What is at stake

There comes a time when we must face what abortion actually does and who is targeted. It is a moment when perspective on the stark reality of death via abortion is gained.

That moment came for me when I saw abortion first hand. I later described the tears I cried as I buried aborted babies found in a trash dumpster. The very act of a human child’s body being disposed of in such a manner jolted my mind. On that day, forever seared into my consciousness, words like “choice” and “Roe” faded away and were replaced by words like “human,” “person,” “pain,” and “horror” as I witnessed the bloodied remains of tiny baby boys and girls dismembered by the violent force of abortion.

The hand and foot of an abortion victim.

No longer abstract

As most of America debates abortion in the abstract, the reality of abortion is — for me, for others who have seen its horror, and for the more than 60 million slaughtered preborn children and the lives left shattered by their deaths — it is no longer abstract. That day catapulted me into a frame of mind I had not previously grasped and brought into full perspective what is at stake — and what the term “abortion” really means. Without words, messages, blogs, videos, or speeches, I learned the truth of what abortion was as I looked at and held the broken limbs of a beautifully created child who had been literally torn apart. The impact of that day has affected every moment of my life.

When the noise around the abortion debate grows louder, I center my thoughts on that day, and I am instantly reminded that every single abortion represents the life of what was once a growing, living baby. Tragically, in 2017 alone, abortion violently snuffed out the lives of over 862,000 babies. As we near the end of 2020, we solemnly mourn the past decade of abortion, which ended the lives of nearly 7.7 million preborn children.

Oskar Schindler: An example for pro-lifers 

Many other times in history, human life has been devalued and targeted for death. I often wonder what might have been in the minds of the victims of such human atrocities, or what the survivors of human genocides might think of their rescuers. Would they care whether the “character” of their rescuers was “Christian enough”? Would they care whether the “strategy” employed to save them was the most effective?

Over 1,200 Jews were rescued during the Nazi Holocaust by Oskar Schindler, whose act of heroism was the subject of Steven Spielberg’s film Schindler’s List. I often wonder if anyone knows of a single Jew rescued by Schindler — described in 1994 by a Canadian magazine as “a crook, a womanizer and a hero.” As those familiar with the film may recall, at the end, Schindler’s survivors file past his grave one by one, each leaving a stone to pay homage to their rescuer. To them, Schindler was their hero, despite his numerous flaws.

(GERMANY OUT) Oskar Schindler*28.04.1908-09.10.1974+Unternehmer, Fabrikant, Drettete im 2. Weltkrieg etwa 1200 Juden das LebenGrab in Jerusalem, Israel. Mit den in der jüdischen Religion üblichen Erinnerungssteinen für das Andenken an einen Toten.- 1994 (Photo by Lauer/ullstein bild via Getty Images)

Schindler’s personal character was far from pristine. Maclean’s Magazine spoke with Moshe Bejski, who was “a draughtsman and forger of Nazi documents in Schindler’s enamelware factory and later an Israeli supreme court judge.” The article states:

Better than most, the survivors know how murky a character Schindler was. He was a black marketeer, a crook. But he was their crook, and they would not want anyone to get him wrong. “Schindler was a drunkard,” says Bejski, now 72. “Schindler was a womanizer. His relations with his wife were bad. He often had not one but several girlfriends.”

But without him, Bejski adds, 1,200 Jews would have perished. “Everything he did put him in danger,” says Bejski. “If Schindler had been a normal man, he would not have done what he did.

Looking through the eyes of survivors can truly put things into perspective.

Love your neighbor 

While I am not a theologian, pastor, or Biblical scholar, as I read Scripture I am led to believe that those who stand to defend the innocent — despite their flaws or brokenness — are generally honored as examples of how God works for good through flawed individuals. Christ told the parable of the good Samaritan who was unwilling to pass by the wounded victim on the road. The Biblical admonition of Christ, which precedes the parable in Luke, quotes Him as emphasizing, “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind’; and, ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.”

Love your neighbor as yourself. Isn’t the preborn child in the womb, a potential victim of abortion, also our neighbor?

There are legitimate discussions to be had about conduct, leadership, elections, and strategy. But these conversations should never ignore the fact that each abortion takes the life of an innocent human being. In America, this has already resulted in a body count of over 60 million dead babies.

If our lives or the life of a family member was marked for death, would we care who the rescuer was? Perhaps if we were to see each preborn child as a real person potentially marked for death, we would love them as we love ourselves, and embrace even flawed individuals willing to lift a hand to help rescue them.

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