By John Ellis
Abortion provider Willie Parker believes that murdering babies while they’re still inside their mothers’ wombs is “the Christian thing to do.” In fact, in a recent interview with Rolling Stone, Parker explains, “I don’t think it’s bombast at all that the closest thing I could think of that would be analogous to women not being in control of their reproductive rights would be the horrible legacy of slavery we have in this country.”
Promoting his new memoir, the professing Christian claims that “anti-choicers” (the label that many who are pro-baby murder often use when referring to pro-lifers) have dishonestly claimed the moral high ground, causing much pain and mistreatment of women. He goes on to detail his move from a Christian doctor who refused to perform abortions to a Christian doctor working as an abortion provider in Mississippi’s only abortion clinic. According to Parker, he “decided to exercise Christian compassion not by proxy, but with my own capable hands.”
Since the abortion provider professes to be a Christian, this should be a rather open-and-shut case. God, the divine and sovereign Creator of the universe, created all humans in His image, and “all humans” includes babies still living inside of their mothers’ wombs. This is why all humans are deserving of respect and should be treated with compassion and courtesy. Once again, “all humans” has under its anthropological umbrella those humans who are still enjoying life inside of their mothers’ wombs.
If that previous paragraph requires more theological nuance than I’m assuming it does, how about the Sixth Commandment? You know, the one in which God very clearly commands that we are not to murder. The command to not kill humans overrides any claims to women’s rights. I mean, there is a hierarchy to these things.
I have a right to my property, but just because I catch someone sleeping in my shed, that doesn’t give me the right to suck the trespasser’s brains out with a vacuum cleaner. And my analogy doesn’t even take into account that a baby inside of her mother’s womb is not a trespasser, she’s supposed to be there; it’s her home.
You know who else got ripped away from their homes against their will for the convenience and benefit of others? Slaves.
Parker comparing the desire to protect the lives of babies by ending the legal sanction of abortion to the great sin of chattel slavery is absurdly and dangerously wrong. Justifying evil was turned into somewhat of a rhetorical art form by those who defended chattel slavery during the 18th and 19th centuries. I guess that it should come as no surprise that an abortion provider would borrow cues from those who believed that is was ok to kidnap humans and then force them into the service of other humans. Remember, the pro-slavery crowd co-opted words like “compassion” and “rights,” too.
One of the arguments frequently used by the pro-slavery crowd was that it would be cruel to turn the slaves free, since no one in society was clamoring to help them once freed. You know—and stop me if you’ve recently heard a similar argument in relation to a contemporary issue—”slavery is complicated and until Christians are willing to step up to the plate and care for the slaves, they should stop this push for abolition.”
For starters, and circling back to the 21st century, people need to stop slandering Christians by claiming that Christians aren’t willing to help poor or unwed mothers. Christians are the most philanthropic group of people in the country. Furthermore, and by way of example, being opposed to government-funded welfare doesn’t mean that the individual doesn’t care about the poor. Most often, it means that the individual has a different understanding than liberals of the ways that society can best care for the poor and needy.
But, and this is an important ethical “but,” two wrongs do not make a right. Even if it were true that Christians en masse were turning their backs on needy mothers, murdering babies would still not be ok. I fail to see how murdering someone is ever the compassionate thing to do.
Hiding behind buzzwords like “Christian” and “compassion” does not remove the great guilt that Willie Parker is going to carry with him when he stands before God one day. No amount of obfuscation or hiding behind a perversion of rights theories is going to be enough to overcome the fact that he is guilty of the murder of children. Apart from repenting of his sins and placing his faith in Jesus, Willie Parker is not going to be able to argue his way out of God’s punishment.
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