Normally I like to at least recognize both sides of an issue. Generally, I find it educational and informative for one to know what the arguments are from both sides. But this one, I cannot and will not give any recognition to a position that I find morally deplorable and reprehensible. So as such, my main purpose is to plead on the behalf of life.
Now since there appears to be 2% that don't get the abortion issue, I believe it would be beneficial to attempt to identify what they are. A definition of abortion that appears to be as ambiguous as possible is found under MedicineNet.com:
Abortion: In medicine, an abortion is the premature exit of the products of conception (the fetus, fetal membranes, and placenta) from the uterus. It is the loss of a pregnancy and does not refer to why that pregnancy was lost.
If you're like me, you read that definition and said, "What?!? How come it doesn't refer to why the pregnancy was lost?" I have to go even further in saying that not only is this definition ambiguous, it borders on deception, if not lying. Interestingly, it leaves out some very important details as to what abortion really is. Details, that if you were new to all of this, that it would give you a much different perspective. According to AbcBirth, abortion is:
Abortion: The loss of a pregnancy by artificial or natural means. The lay public often refers to "abortion" as any artificial means to induce the loss of a pregnancy. Physicians and midwives refer to this type of abortion as "therapeutic abortion" or "elective abortion". Physicians and midwives also refer to miscarriages as "spontaneous", "threatened" or "incomplete" abortions.
Some other important terminology to understand the abortion debate can be found at Religious Tolerance. I'll list a few here that are relevant to the discussion:
Anti-abortion: This is a term whose meaning is in flux. Sometimes it is used as a derogatory synonym for "pro-life." Recently, it has been frequently used to refer to individuals and groups who take violent action against abortion providers or clinics, up to and including shooting staff and bombing clinics.(WARNING: The following paragraphs are graphic in nature.)
Anti-choice: Derogatory term used to refer to pro-life advocates, implying that their prime motivation is to control women and restrict their freedom. It is not. Almost all "pro-lifers" appear to be motivated by the belief that a fertilized ovum, embryo and fetus are a human person whose life must be protected.
Embryo: A stage of pre-natal mammalian development which (in humans) extends from 2 to 8 weeks after fertilization. It is termed a "bilaminar" or two layer embryo during its second week and becomes a trilaminar (3 layer) embryo during its third week. At 9 weeks it is generally referred to as a fetus.
Fetus: From the Latin fetus, meaning offspring, bringing forth, hatching of young. 2 A stage of pre-natal mammalian development which (in humans) starts 9 weeks after fertilization or at the gestational age of 11 weeks. Once born, the fetus is referred to as a newborn.
Life: Sperm is a form of human life, because it contains human DNA. An individual sperm might have been alive for many months before it has the opportunity to approach an ovum. An ovum is a form of human life, because it also contains human DNA. It ripens and is expelled by an ovary many days before having the possibility being exposed to sperm. A new-born baby is a human life and a human person. Pro-life advocates typically believe that the transition from human life to human personhood happens at fertilization. Pro-choice advocates typically believe that the transition happens much later (e.g. when the fetus is viable -- capable of living on its own, or when its higher brain functions start to operate, or when it is born).
Pro-choice: A belief that women should be given free access to abortions if she wishes to terminate a pregnancy. People who consider themselves "pro-choice" take many positions. Some believe that a woman should have free access to abortions up until fetal viability; others say that a woman should be able to choose to have an abortion later in pregnancy.
Pro-life: In general, this is movement whose members believe that human life (in the form of a spermatozoon and ovum) becomes a human person at the instant of conception (or perhaps shortly after when a unique DNA is produced). Thus the lives of all pre-embryos, embryos and fetuses are to be protected under law until birth. The term has been embraced by some who feel that abortions should be totally unavailable, even to save the life of the woman. Others would allow a woman to have an abortion to avoid disastrous or disabling health problems. At the other end of the spectrum are persons who would allow abortions if caused by of rape or incest. According to one Pro-life group, legislators who have vote in favor of a partial birth abortion ban are now calling themselves "pro-life:" Pastor Matt Trewhella of www.missionariestopreborn.com noted that now even a person "who is only opposed to partial-birth abortions can sell themselves as pro-life."
Now, keep in mind, these definitions are not based so much on a Christian perspective. But here is where a spade must be called a spade. I understand there are different definitions pertaining to abortions: therapeutic, elective, spontaneous, threatened, incomplete, or whatever. We all know what the main discussion here is about, and where abortion is being discussed everywhere in society. It's about the intentional, or elective, abortion of a life inside a womb. Christianet.com puts the definition in terms regarding the methodology:
Perhaps the best way to arrive a a fair definition of abortion is to take a look at the different methods that are utilized in the termination of a pregnancy. Dilation and curettage involves the forced dilation of the woman's cervix. After this the fetus is cut apart and dismembered and vacuumed from the mother's womb through a suction tube. After the unborn infant is removed, the abortionist must reassemble the various body parts to make sure that nothing has been left inside the mother. When this occurs it is called retained products of conception and can result in infection or further surgery for the aborting mother. Early in the pregnancy, a looped knife may be used to kill and cut apart the unborn child. In later term abortions, the abortionist will use forceps to tear apart the infant through violent twisting actions. Often the spine will need to be broken in two and the skull collapsed. Such descriptions can certainly do much to change an individual's definition of abortion.
After the fourth month of pregnancy, a procedure called saline injection may be used. The abortionist will use a long needle to inject a saline, or salt solution through the mother's abdomen into the amniotic sac. The infant will swallow this solution and be poisoned by it. The outer layer of the unborn child's skin may also be badly burned. This procedure takes time and the unborn child may suffer for an hour or more. In some cases, this approach does not succeed in killing the infant. The mother will then go into labor sometime within the next twenty four hours. She may give birth to a dead baby, but there have been cases of infants who were still living when they were delivered. If left unattended, as is often the case, these infants will die. There are many stories of individuals who have survived these late term abortions and gone on to be adopted and lead full lives. These survivors certainly offer a unique perspective on the definition of abortion.
Understanding abortion is important. Unless you allow yourself to come to grips on what abortion does, you can never fully appreciate the seriousness of situation. That is why I believe we all need to know the definition as put forth (as above) by Christianet.com. And that is why so many pro-life advocates are pleading with our elective representatives that women who are considering abortion should know the behind-the-scenes actions that are part of abortion. For example, in Florida advocates were seeking to pass a measure that would "have required a woman to undergo an ultrasound before undergoing an abortion" as they were able to pass in Oklahoma. Unfortunately, this failed at the hands of its governor. Not only that, this has left many liberals upset that they're being forced to waste precious time AND saying it infringes on womens' rights to have an abortion. Another example of this is The Unborn Child Pain Awareness Act of 2010. This seeks to "ensure that women who are seeking an abortion are made aware that a child may be able to feel pain at 20 weeks of gestation and allows a woman to choose anesthesia for the baby if they decide to go through with the procedure." This is currently being presented before Congress by Rep. Chris Smith.
By now you understand what abortion is. But do you understand what is being done in regards to abortion? Are you aware that in some ways you ARE supporting it? Unfortunately, you are. Whether you like it or not. And whether it goes against your conscience or not. To the government, that is irrelevant. What is relevant is the fact that it is legal and they're going to use your tax dollars to ensure that their agenda is being moved forward. According to the Government Accountability Office (GAO), nearly a billion of your (recorded) tax dollars have been spent on pro-abortion organizations in the past seven years. And they say that's not including the amount that cannot be accounted for. What many people DO NOT even realize (including some uninformed Christians) is who these particular organizations are. Let's list out the five main ones the GAO discloses:
Advocates for Health
The Guttmacher Institute
Planned Parenthood Federation of America (PPFA)
Population Council and Sexuality Information
Education Council of the United States (SEICUS)
Planned Parenthood? Really? Isn't that an oxymoron? Interestingly, I have known Christians, and some well-meaning people, who were not even aware that Planned Parenthood was involved in such things. But if you have paid any attention at all to the news or read any current events in the newspaper, you would know that Planned Parenthood plays a BIG part in the abortion industry.
So, is this it? Again, no. Unfortunately, it's going to get worse. Like it or not, we're going to be supporting the abortion industry through our premiums and tax dollars in the new Healthcare Reform passed by Congress and signed by the President. You say that you don't believe it? Check out what the Family Research Council has to say about it. But it doesn't stop there. Abortion advocates are pushing for abortions to once again be allowed on military bases. (Who is it again that pays taxes that pays for our military?) And now the FDA is holding hearings on (which may already been approved) the use of yet ANOTHER 'Morning After' pill. For those who are wondering what abortifacient drugs are, Life Issues Institutes describes it as "a drug or device which causes an abortion within the first one or two weeks of a human's life."
Of course, in this whole debate, I go on without even examining what the Bible, God's Word, has to say about it. First, I have to ask, "Would God support a procedure that basically dehumanizes and devalues life?" Life that David said:
11 "If I say, "Surely the darkness will hide me
and the light become night around me,"
12 even the darkness will not be dark to you;
the night will shine like the day,
for darkness is as light to you.
13 For you created my inmost being;
you knit me together in my mother's womb.
14 I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
your works are wonderful,
I know that full well.
AND life that Solomon said:
5 As you do not know the path of the wind,
or how the body is formed in a mother's womb,
so you cannot understand the work of God,
the Maker of all things.
God who gave us life. Should we take God's place and determine whether a child is to live or to die? Does God not see even the sparrow that falls from the tree? God even knows us before we're born! So let's not think that God is unconcerned about these matters. Life that He gave is precious to Him. Life even inside the womb.
Now, if you're like me, you're asking what can be done? Is it hopeless? First of all, God is still in control. So no, it's never hopeless. But we can do our part. In whatever way God leads you, be a voice for the unborn. Speak out, vote, write your congressman, join pro-life organizations taking the fight to the government, and take part in the legislative process. But above everything else, pray. Pray is the most powerful weapon we have against the spiritual forces of darkness. And whether we realize it or not, we are in a battle.
11Put on the full armor of God so that you can take your stand against the devil's schemes. 12For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. 13Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand.
Ephesians 6:14-18As Thomas Jefferson once wrote, "The chief purpose of government is to protect life. Abandon that and you have abandoned all."
14Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, 15and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. 16In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. 17Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. 18And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the saints.