Let’s say half the people who voted for Clinton really like her. The other half were just voting against Trump. Let’s say it’s the same for the other side. So now, about a quarter of the country is happy with the result of the election, and the rest are feeling everything from trepidation to anger to despair.
I find myself in the Trepidation category. I have concerns about foreign relations, and about the protection of immigrants in this country of immigrants. I’m not angry with anyone. And I’m far from despair. I believe in this country, I believe in the documents by which it is defined, and I have hope that it can survive even an election this divisive.
This blog is about the abortion issue. I’m hearing a lot about the “end of women’s rights.” That’s code for the “right” of pregnant women to abort their babies. This “right” was not bestowed from eternity by the Creator, like the rights referenced in the Declaration of Independence, the first of which is the right to life. No, the “right to choose” was bestowed by the Supreme Court in 1973. Forty-three years later, we have the blood of more than 50 million babies on our hands as a nation, and I’m hopeful that this genocide might be brought to an end.
The media, shapers of opinion, teach that a pro-life position comes with the “package” when someone becomes a Christian. That is untrue. I know Christians who are pro-abortion. And I know non-Christians who are pro-life. I was one of those. My faith has strengthened my conviction, but I had no faith when it was formed.
When I was in college, pre-Roe v. Wade, I had two friends who had abortions. One had to fly to Japan, where it was legal. I felt bad for them, but we didn’t really give it that much thought, we all moved on. It was about avoiding a complication in life. When Roe v. Wade became law, it seemed right and reasonable to me. It would provide a safe alternative to dangerous back-room abortions. The underlying assumption being that abortion was the prudent solution to an unwanted pregnancy.
After college I joined the workforce, and I began to have friends who were marrying and having children. The moms-to-be would caress their tummies and talk about their “babies.” That also seemed normal to me. And then it happened that one of them suffered a miscarriage. That was a time of sadness, my friend and her husband grieved deeply for their lost child. For their baby. And that was the first time the inconsistency actually dawned on me: that pregnant women were pregnant with children. It couldn’t be that some were pregnant with something else. I began to re-think the idea that abortion was all about the woman’s body only. There is another body involved, the body of a child.
Over time I have learned more about the gestation process. A human genome is formed, with its complete and unique human DNA, within 12 hours of conception. A new human’s life has begun. And it turns out that if it is wanted, it’s a baby in everyone’s mind, right from the start. If a problem is discovered in utero, in many cases that baby can even have surgery. Under anesthesia. (A baby can feel pain by Week 12.)
But if it isn’t wanted, then we’re to believe that it’s not a baby. It’s called a fetus. No emotional baggage is attached to that word. And that fetus can be ripped to pieces in the womb, have his skull crushed, her arms and legs ripped off, without benefit of anesthesia, sucked out like a piece of refuse and disposed of. Even, now, into the third trimester.
Why has that baby no right to live? If his parents don’t want him, there are others who do. If her mother can’t afford to feed and clothe her, there are agencies and service organizations that can help.
Some are concerned about pregnancies that result from rape or incest, or that endanger the life or health of the mother. Abortion in these cases was legal before Roe v. Wade, and they account for fewer than 15% of abortions performed. Health concerns account for about 12%, rape and incest 1% or less. (http://www.abort73.com/abortion_facts/us_abortion_statistics/) So, there is really no argument for wholesale abortion-on-demand based on these exceptional circumstances.
I’m hopeful that, as the pro-abortion movement fears, Roe v. Wade might finally be overturned. I’m hopeful that more enlightened policies will be adopted, and programs funded, with the needs of both mother and baby in mind.