When Legal and Moral Collide

Anti abortion rally in Washington, D.C. Decemb...

Anti abortion rally in Washington, D.C. December 2004. My own work. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I have always disliked the “pro-choice”/ “pro-life” titles for the sides on the abortion debate. It simply would have been more truthful to say “pro-abortion”, or “anti-abortion”.  Abortion advocates would like us to believe that the moral determination as to whether or not the embryo or fetus inside is a living thing, is a personal decision that each woman must decide for herself.  This is scientifically incorrect.  Even from the earliest stages an embryo exhibits the basic criteria for being alive.  The real moral question that a woman considering abortion must decide, is at what stage and under what circumstances is the taking of that life justifiable?  When I ask myself that question it becomes obvious that an abortion should only, ever be considered as the last resort to a dire circumstance. A woman who has been raped is in a dire circumstance.  A woman who must choose between life saving cancer treatment that would kill her unborn child or leaving the children she already has motherless, is in a dire circumstance.  A woman who is carrying a child with birth defects so severe as to be incompatible with life is in a dire circumstance. Even as a Christian, I could not sit in judgement of a woman, who faced with such a gut wrenching decision, would terminate a pregnancy. Though I might not have made the same choice.  A woman who gets caught with her hand in the cookie jar? That’s a different story.  There is never a “perfect” time to have a baby. Pregnancies are always expensive, inconvenient and somewhat embarrassing.  Those are never good reasons to have an abortion.  If you feel that you are not mature enough to raise a child, or that now is not the “right” time for you be a mother, there are options available to you that do not require killing a baby.

I felt it was necessary to clarify my position on abortion, because now I am going to say something that many conservative, Christians will strongly disagree with.

It is time to take Abortion, as a political issue, off the table.

By making a willingness to overturn Roe vs. Wade the litmus test for Republican candidates, we have played right into the hands of our enemies  and given them a club to beat us over the head with.  This has never been more apparent than in the last election, with its fictitious “war on women”.  Even with no basis in fact, the liberal left was able to turn an erroneous perception into a political slogan that became a wave of misinformed women voters that turned the tide of the election. Moderate conservatives have shied away from candidates that they felt were too hard-core, while Evangelicals lambasted the same candidates for being too soft.  All the while, the left eagerly exploits the irony that a group that fights for less governmental control of our private lives, fights to give the government control of a very private women’s issue.  Our legal system allows many things that are immoral or at the very least bad for us.  We must acknowledge that in most cases where the federal government tries to legislate morality, it does a very poor job.  Prohibition, the “war on drugs”, “don’t ask don’t tell”, and affirmative action are just a few examples. Can we accept the difference between moral and legal without compromising our values? Absolutely. Unlike the contraception mandate in the affordable care act, that requires businesses run by religious organizations to provide birth control to their employees, even if it goes against their religious tenants, Roe vs. Wade does not compel us to have abortions.   The problem isn’t that abortions are legal, it’s that women choose to have abortions of convenience. The real battle isn’t about overturning a law, it’s about changing attitudes about the sanctity of life.  We can still continue to put up billboards, hand out literature, educate the public, and provide services and alternatives  for pregnant women. We can teach our daughters, granddaughters, and nieces that abortion is wrong in the eyes of God. The battle should continue to be fought on the street corners, our homes and from the pulpit. Just not in the halls of Congress.

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