Let Me Make Everyone Angry

In Christianity on April 9, 2011 at 2:07 am

Cecile Richards of Planned Parenthood (PP) was on MSNBC as I began this post. Her argument was that PP does preventative care, affordable early detection of breast and cervical cancer, and family planning. Lawrence O’Donnell, one of my favorite commentators, appeared later in the day reading an email endorsing PP that left him all choked up.

Planned Parenthood does provide medical services that are a huge help to the medically under-served in the U.S.  And PP should be commended for that. But the overriding argument here is not about the good PP does. It is about the non-negotiable horror they inflict. Click here: “abortion is a safe and legal way to end pregnancy.”

You be the judge.  First, look at the Life Legal Defense Foundation’s website. Then read Harry Reid’s approach to the issue here. Then look at Magaret Sanger’s views (she is closely identified with PP, as you’ll see here). Despite her controversial views on many subjects, including contraception, even she was opposed to abortion: “While there are cases where even the law recognizes an abortion as justifiable if recommended by a physician, I assert that the hundreds of thousands of abortions performed in America each year are a disgrace to civilization.”

This is not women’s health. Look at Priests for Life’s site (be warned: there are graphic photographs that show the horror of abortion, but those photos are not on the home page). Imagine, God help us, the terrors of a partial birth abortion— because the parent didn’t intend for for the child to live, but waited to exercise “choice.”

This is not “choice,” the mantra that has been attached by advocates to the issue. “Choice” has great resonance for U.S. voters, like motherhood and apple pie. But abortion is the “choice” to destroy of thousands of human lives daily (by some estimates, 3,500 per day). Read Princeton professor Robert P. George’s The Clash of Orthodoxies. The value of human life is intrinsically good (based on what we are), not merely instrumentally good (based whether the life will be useful, or even “convenient”).

Now, perhaps turnabout is fair play. Let me make all my conservative friends angry. With the horrific exception of abortion, the Democrats are a lot closer to “getting it right” than the Republicans. The Democrats are the party of compassion.  That has been demonstrated over decades.  Even today, do any of us really think that cutting taxes, repealing healthcare, and cutting state and federal services is a Christian response to societal needs around us?

Consider, too, that much of Washington is driven by corporate money. Corporations are legally chartered to be pathologically selfish. “They sell the just man for silver, and the poor man for a pair of sandals. They trample the heads of the weak into the dust of the earth, and force the lowly out of the way.” The quotation from Amos 2:6-7 is a fair  description of the impact of large corporations (I’m not talking about small, family companies).  If you want a more current assessment than that of Amos, watch the film, The Corporation, or read the book. And it might be interesting to add Inside Job and Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room to your “films to be watched” list.

Shut the government down if we must. Abortion cannot continue. But please don’t imagine the Republicans have all the answers.

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