Instagram influencer Ellen Fisher recently posted announcing her latest pregnancy. The vegan, unschooling mom in Hawaii has more than 500,000 followers. She received many warm messages of congratulations about her pregnancy announcement — that is, until she shared basic facts about the prenatal development of her baby.
A photo posted earlier this week shows Fisher posing with her baby bump. In the caption, Fisher wrote, “At 15 weeks pregnant the baby inside of me has unique, one-of-a kind fingerprints that are visible already. He/she has fingers and tiny fingernails and toes and eyes and a face and developing organs…She can sense your mood and temperament. And just 21 days following conception – the baby’s organs start to develop, and the heart begins to beat.”
After listing these scientific facts, Fisher added, “These developmental milestones often take place before the mother even knows she is pregnant. How amazing is the miracle of growing babies! Babies in the womb have intrinsic value. The difference between us and them is time.”
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At 15 weeks pregnant the baby inside of me has unique, one-of-a kind fingerprints that are visible already. He/she has fingers and tiny fingernails and toes and eyes and a face and developing organs. The baby’s heart is pumping roughly 25 quarts of blood every day and will continue as he develops in the womb. She has reflexes and can open and close her fingers and make movement with her mouth. Between 15 to 20 weeks baby will double in size. As his body grows, his nervous system is rapidly maturing. His nerves are connecting his brain to the rest of his body, traveling to the brain and then down the spine and beginning to extend into his torso and limbs. Sensory development is picking up speed and her brain is designating special areas for smell, taste, hearing, vision and touch. As your baby grows he creates a strong connection to you and is learning who you are. She can sense your mood and temperament. And just 21 days following conception – the baby’s organs start to develop, and the heart begins to beat. These developmental milestones often take place before the mother even knows she is pregnant. How amazing is the miracle of growing babies! Babies in the womb have intrinsic value. The difference between us and them is time.
In response, the post received well over 6,000 comments and counting. While Fisher received many positive comments, many followers claimed they would no longer follow Fisher because of her pro-life comments. The detractors expressed outrage and extreme, counter-factual responses, claiming she “shamed women” and is making the world unsafe. And what are the pro-abortion commenters responding to? A mother marveling at the incredibly intricate development of her own child, the same development that every person has gone through to be born into the world.
One commenter claimed Fisher showed in her message that she “actively discourage[d] respect for every woman’s right to choose over her own body and life…” and “Opinions as expressed in the caption are why so many women live unsafely in this world.” Another wrote, “you should be ashamed of yourself. just say you hate women and think their purpose is to be bred like cattle and go.”
These spiteful comments show how far the pro-abortion argument has descended into strawmen and illogical arguments. Recognizing the inherent dignity of human life in the womb does not devalue women. When we acknowledge the human dignity and right to life of the most vulnerable in our society, we affirm the human dignity of all people.
What pro-abortion commenters outraged by basic scientific facts fail to see is that the pro-life position does not pit a mother against her child, forcing us to choose one or the other. The pro-life position is the simple belief that we can seek the best for both the mother and her child. Abortion is not a solution to difficult circumstances or a “necessary” choice in a crisis. Abortion ends a human life.
Other influencers and artists have received extreme backlash for expressing a pro-life position. Fisher’s choice to share the facts of the pro-life position was a courageous one. Sadly, it shouldn’t have to be.
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