Abortion: Some Common Objections Answered

 

Fr. Frank Pavone

 
  11/4/2008
   Following are statements some people make about abortion. Each one of them misses the point, which is that every abortion kills an innocent baby.

"The abortion issue has no place in the Church." Then what does? Are people who worship God supposed to be blind to injustice? Are believers supposed to be unconcerned about what goes on in the world? Abortion kills 1.6 million babies in America every year. In Church we say we believe in "the Lord, the Giver of Life." Church is the place to talk about things that concern God, and God cares about the destruction of 1.6 million babies a year! The Bible says that those who worship God but do not act to correct injustices are not pleasing God at all (see Amos 5:21-27, and Isaiah 1:10-17).

"We shouldn't impose our beliefs on others." Do you really think that to say "killing is wrong" is imposing a belief? Would you want people around you who have the opposite belief?

A society cannot run if it tolerates the killing of the innocent. Nor can it run if it tolerates stealing. These are basic aspects of human life, and are not exclusively tied to the beliefs of any one religious denomination. You do not have to be Catholic or religious at all to understand that killing the innocent is wrong. To speak up against it is not "imposing beliefs"; it is basic human decency.

"The woman should decide." Decide what? Abortion is the killing of a baby. Nobody has the right to "decide" whether an innocent person should live or die. If we say that a woman can decide that an innocent baby should die, what is to prevent a person from deciding that an innocent parent should die, or a governor from deciding that you should die? Once you say that the right to life depends on someone else's "decision", you have crossed a line into chaos and have put society on a collision course with itself. Women should not be helped to kill their babies; they should be helped to nurture them, and the pro-life movement does precisely that.

"Abortion is not a political issue." In other words, "political issues" have nothing to do with protecting human lives? Why do people organize themselves politically? What is the purpose of government and of power? Thomas Jefferson stated that the only legitimate object of good government is the care, and not the destruction, of its citizens. Abortion kills 1.6 million babies a year, and that is a serious, public issue involving human rights and human lives. It therefore involves those who are responsible for public policy. Government has a duty to protect its people, not to pretend that they aren't people at all.

"I oppose abortion, but who am I to tell a woman she can't do it?" Do you ever hear this reasoning applied to other violations of human rights? Let's test it out. "I oppose bank robberies, but who am I to tell her she can't do it?" That would be an interesting position especially if it were your bank! "I oppose rape, but who am I to tell him he can't do it? "I oppose race riots, but..." and so on.

If abortion kills a baby, then you have every right -- and duty -- to protect that baby, and also to protect that woman from a tragic decision which wounds her morally, psychologically, and physically. Who are you to tell her she can't have an abortion? You are a human being who has enough concern and courage to stand up to evil and say "No!"

"You might upset women who have had abortions." Yes, in talking about injustice, you might upset people who have stolen or cheated. In talking about unkindness, you might upset people who have been unkind. But issues that impact on our lives must be addressed.

Look at the other side. By NOT talking about abortion, you fail to help women who are tempted to make the same tragic mistake. By your silence, you also tell women who have had abortions that it was no big deal, and that you really don't care about the pain they now may have. Those who keep silent do what the pro-abortionists do, leaving these women alone with nothing but a wounded soul and a dead baby. Pro-lifers, instead, confront the evil. They assist the women who want to have their baby, and they help women who have had abortions to find forgiveness and peace.

"There are other issues." Sure there are, but only for people who are alive. The pre-born babies are the people treated with MOST contempt, and so they need the MOST attention; they are the ones who are the MOST helpless, and so they need the MOST help; they are the ones dying in the LARGEST numbers, and so they need the LARGEST number of advocates.

Other issues are important because life is important. Poverty is an issue because the poor have a RIGHT TO LIVE. Unemployment is an issue because people have the right to work IN ORDER TO LIVE. It all comes back to LIFE. Abortion is the most direct attack on LIFE itself, at its most defenseless stage. To be concerned with other issues and NOT concerned about abortion is an absurdity.

Furthermore, the pro-life movement is falsely accused of caring "only" for the pre-born. The facts show that pro-lifers are deeply concerned with mothers, and with ALL human life.

But there is a specific mission to protect the pre-born and to end abortion. Don't people have a right to dedicate themselves to that task without being judged? Since when is a group condemned for having a specific focus? Do we condemn groups that serve the deaf for not caring for the blind? Do we condemn those rescuing people from a burning building for not going to Africa to feed the starving? Nobody can do everything. That doesn't mean we don't care. Maybe it's time that as we live our lives; we all care a little more for the pre-born babies who may not have a chance in life at all.