From the American Presidential race, to pro-life protests in Southland, abortion continues to remain a contentious and hugely controversial issue (in fact, it is arguably the most controversial issue of our era).
And so it should, because, as any intellectually honest person knows (even if they aren’t willing to openly admit it, or aren’t willing to publicly speak out against abortion) abortion kills an innocent human being who did absolutely nothing to justify such a cruel and barbaric end.
Pro-choice activists might have become deft hands at dodging the important ethical questions that lie at the heart of the abortion debate, and while they may have also done their darndest to try and convince the rest of the populace that abortion is nothing more than a simple surgical procedure, the controversy still rages on.
There are three good reasons why things have played out the way they have, and why controversy over abortion will always be with us (until abortion has been abolished, that is):
Reason and conscience
When it comes to the ethics of abortion, and the issue of which side of this debate has more reasoned and logically sound arguments to back up their position, it’s all one way traffic, and it’s all in favor of the pro-life position.
To support abortion choice someone has to actually make a break from sound human reasoning and logic in the area of ethics, and instead turn a blind eye to the obvious and very grave ethical problem of killing an innocent human being.
This is why attempts to justify abortion using ‘bodily rights’ arguments have become more popular in recent times – because they try and justify abortion by simply ignoring the glaring reality that an innocent human being is killed in every abortion (too bad about their bodily rights aye?).
Most people (i.e. the vast majority, who are NOT rabid in their commitment to the pro-choice ideology) know what abortion really truly is, and what it actually does to innocent human beings – they simply choose to suppress this reality (maybe because of cultural peer pressure, or out of an unreasonable fear of seeming unfairly ‘judgmental’ about the abortion choices of others?).
The only problem is that there is only so long that such profound ethical realities and truths can be suppressed, and for most people, sooner or later their conscience awakens from its pro-choice slumber and begins to nag away at them about the unethical nature of abortion.
This ‘gnawing’ of the conscience may never result in a fully-fledged move away from the pro-choice position for many people (ingrained social conditioning is hard to break free of – especially if you also carry a whole lot of preconceived and false notions about pro-lifers being irrational lunatics and placard waving religos, etc.), but it never goes away either, and this creates an ethical discontent that simmers away beneath our collective cultural skin.
Such ethical simmerings are the first step in a move away from social acceptance and cultural moral cowardice in the face of grave evil – the next step is a more vocialised discontent and questioning of the legitimacy of the evil (a phase that I believe we are now starting to move into as a culture). The final stage is a social rejection of the evil, and a cultural embrace of the opposite ethical truth.
Science and technology
I don’t think that it is any coincidence that abortion enjoyed such strong support at a period of human history when science and technology offered lay people very little in the way of a window into the womb, and fetal development, etc.
This has changed dramatically in the decades since, however, with ultrasound now even being routinely carried out in 4D – a technology which confronts us with the stark reality of what exactly this thing we call a ‘fetus’ actually is (yep, there’s no doubting that it really is a vulnerable human being in need of our nurture and care – as opposed to the age-old pro-choice lie that it was nothing more than a ‘blob of tissue’ or ‘clump of cells’).
I once heard someone suggest that if a woman’s belly became translucent during every pregnancy almost no abortions would ever take place – and I believe there is a profound truth to this idea. It is always easier to endorse the killing of a human being you never see up close and never have to personalize (if you doubt this fact, just do some reading up about the difference between being a soldier on the ground – who had to see and witness the death of the enemy firsthand – as opposed to the bomber pilots and crew who only ever witnessed the devastation from afar during World War 2).
More and more though, the reality of the unborn child is becoming harder and harder to escape and deny, because modern technology and information availability (thanks Mr. Google!) is giving us an evermore translucent womb.
The reality of abortion in the lives of women
The acolytes of the pro-choice ideology might be content to spout unreasoned nonsense about abortion being just another surgical procedure, but the fact is that the majority of women who have been through it know that abortion is far from ‘just another surgical procedure’.
It has always struck me as rather illogical that certain so-called ‘feminists’ would harbor such a militant commitment to abortion that they would even attempt to attack and write-off the serious harm done to their fellow females who have been hurt in some way because of an abortion.
Instead of actually owning up to the fact that many of their sisters (to borrow a popular term from 70’s era feminism), who have had abortions, have been hurt and damaged by the experience, these ‘feminists’ would rather make their wounded sisters out to be liars or deluded fools.
How else is a woman who has experienced abortion meant to feel when she hears someone like Margaret Sparrow, and other defenders of abortion choice, vehemently engaging in public denials of the fact that there is even such a thing as post-abortion trauma?
I can only imagine it would make their grief all the more painful, only serving to isolate them further.
As British feminist Germaine Greer once said: “The crowning insult is that this ordeal [of abortion] is represented to her as some kind of a privilege. Her sad and onerous duty is garbed in the rhetoric of a civil right.”
Surely never a more true statement was made about the commitment of the pro-choice ideology to abortion – a commitment that doesn’t seem to waver even in the face of woman being harmed by abortion.
Sooner or later, however, much like other ‘denier’ movements, the truth becomes too overwhelming to ignore.
When that happens a wave of reality will break open the deception and lies that have been perpetrated by those who have elevated support for abortion, with a religious-like fervor, above concern for the harm that it is doing to the women in our communities.
So there you have it – the three main factors that I think will eventually lead to an end to the toleration of abortion, and the three main reasons why abortion has never been able to achieve the mainstream normalization that pro-choice militants like ALRANZ, etc. had hoped to see secured by now.
In fact, truth be told, I think that ALRANZ is well aware that the writing is on the wall for the toleration of abortion, and that it isn’t a matter of ‘if’, but ‘when’ we will come to our senses as a culture and cease turning a blind eye to the killing of thousands of our fellow kiwis every year.
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