Please choose whether you support legal abortion through all nine months of pregnancy, under all circumstances, even for unborn who could survive outside the womb…or if you support some abortion, and believe that other abortion should be illegal. Please choose now.
If you chose nine-month abortion, unconditionally, I will point out that your position is violent, extreme, and unpopular, although I thank you for participating. I will not try to persuade you, and you may stop reading now.
If you chose the latter stand, the “pro-some-abortion and anti-other-abortion” position, as I hope you did, I would like you to know that it is difficult to defend that position. I believe that to successfully oppose any abortion and advocate for at least some unborn babies, you have to cease endorsing the abortion you support. Specifically, you need to abandon all arguments that demand nine-month abortion under all circumstances. For example, if you oppose any abortion, you cannot say that the practice should be legal on the following grounds:
- the government has no right to make abortion illegal
- a woman’s right to control her body grants her the right to abort
- the fetus is not a person until birth
- illegal abortion is unacceptable because it leads to the deaths of women
- only the woman and her doctor get to decide
- the unborn is expensive and burdensome to the woman, family and society
The six contentions above make up the entire core pro-choice argument. If you don’t believe them, you’re not pro-choice, and if you do, you are a nine-month pro-choicer. These six claims have been designed and disseminated to promote unqualified prenatal homicide. Often, when people use these arguments, they are unwittingly insisting upon abortions they themselves don’t even believe in. Where many anti-abortion people will try to disprove the core arguments, I will simply point out that you yourself do not believe them unless you are a nine-month extremist.
To oppose some abortion, not only do you need to abandon nine-month arguments, but you have to argue for unborn human rights, supporting pre-born individuals that the law and the general public do not currently respect. What anti-abortion arguments do you believe? You will have to offer some. In fact, to defend the killings you do support, you will have to find pro-abortion arguments other than the core arguments, and these have to be stronger than they otherwise would have to be, since you are making anti-abortion arguments as well. Good luck.
Next, you must draw a bright line which protects the children in the womb who you say have a right to live and distinguishes them from unborn who you say can be legitimately destroyed. When you draw the demarcation line, ask yourself, “Am I to define the line, or am I to discover it? Is it enough that I am satisfied with the line, or does it have to involve something objective that can persuade others in principle? Am I claiming that the line distinguishes human beings from non-humans? Or am I claiming the line separates human beings with a right to live from human beings who are disposable? Do I have the authority to decide that some human beings don’t have the same right to live the rest of us have?”
There are problems with drawing a line, with trying to protect some unborn children while killing others. Third month, fourth month, fifth month, sixth…can the killing be contained? Months are based on the cycles of the moon … have we plunged ourselves into a moon-worshiping cult to justify child sacrifice? Are we to have nurses stand by with calendars and stopwatches, saying, “Kill the fetus now, Doctor, while you still have time. You have ten seconds…five, four, three, two, one…Murder!”?
If you are in fact separating human beings into two classes, you have torn down a sort of dam. That dam is the principle that all human beings have an equal right to live. To protect the children you believe have the right to live, you need to build a second dam that is stronger than the first. That is because by negating the first dam, you have advanced the cause of killing. But how in the world can you provide a principle more powerful than the equality-of-human-life ethic?
You must say to your peers, “You do not have the right to kill these unborn children,” which is rather difficult to do while you are also saying, “I have the right to kill these other unborn children.” If one person can declare those pesky little babies disposable, who can’t?
Yours in searching for common ground,