-- Tom Hoefling, President and Founder, Equal Protection for Posterity
"To claim a right to 'decide' whether or not some individual, or class of individuals, should be protected, is to deny the unalienable, God-given nature of our rights, the basis for the American claim to liberty, the cornerstone for the rule of law, the very raison d'etre of human government, according to our founders: 'We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. That to secure these rights, governments are instituted among men...'"
-- Tom Hoefling, President and Founder, Equal Protection for Posterity
Passages of Right
Kevin M. Nelson
While there is no perfect way to attempt creating analogies or arguments that will properly reflect the sanctity and indescribable value of an innocent human life, I am always searching for new and better ways to unlock the closed minds of those who would rather put the convenience and circumstance of one human, above the God-given unalienable right of another, completely innocent human, to live.
Two questions come to mind when attempting this difficult task of unveiling the motives behind people’s casual willingness to destroy innocent human life:
1. Does the inability to see or fully understand something truly diminish the value of the unseen or mysterious- and/or- does not seeing something give people a calculated self-justification as a defense mechanism for deniability?
2. What do You value, if not innocent Human Life of another- your own life, the lives of wild animals or pets, inanimate objects, or philosophical concepts?
1. The Unseen and Misunderstood.
I am often amazed at the uninformed assumptions people hold regarding children at the fetal stage or what “terminating” the child actually involves, but even more so by those who become enraged by graphic images that do nothing more than depict the very same act they claim to condone, support, or advocate for.
The most staunch supporters of abortion never seem to address this hypocrisy, most notable on social media sites where one minute Miss Pro-“choice” is ranting and raving about the “fetus” being a blob that a women should not be “forced” to carry for nine months, only to absolutely freak when faced with an image of that “blob” with its torn limbs and pierced torso, all of which is followed by this staunch supporter “reporting” the image as “inappropriate” to the site’s governing powers, who most certainly seem more concerned about protecting liberal agendas and hate, while censoring truth and reality.
On the other end of the “unseen” spectrum is the first part of the question- is there a diminished value? Perhaps better stated- is it easier to classify the child as “less-than” when the world has not seen the baby’s face, or has not come to terms with understanding their own human prenatal development- several years or decades before holding a pro-abortion philosophy?
Consider, if you will, these imperfect analogies that inadequately, but hopefully at least somewhat effectively, describe things similar to the unseen forces of life:
The sun does not cease to exist simply because there is night.
(The baby does not cease to be a baby because it is hidden in the womb)
The sun does not cease to burn brightly because of a rain storm.
(The baby does not cease to be a baby because of an external circumstance)
Lightning is no less powerful simply because you cannot hold it or explain it.
(The baby is no less alive because it cannot yet be held in one’s arms or does not yet possess the features it will develop before birth)
A young White Oak (Quercus alba) sapling, uprooted by the wind and left to whither in the sun, does not, by definition, instantly become anything less than a dead White Oak (Quercus alba) sapling, no longer able to become the towering tree it might have been.
(Killing a Human (H. sapiens) baby in the womb does not cause it to suddenly become anything other than a dead Human (H. sapiens) baby. Often stated as- “abortion doesn’t make you un-pregnant, it makes you the mother of a dead baby”- author unknown)
2. What You value, or suddenly- Don’t value.
Is there anything more hypocritical than a self-described pro-abortion advocate (though they still often hide behind the popular term “Pro-choice”) being seen holding a baby, or attending a baby shower?
I submit to you that such actions are evidence of a selfish ideology that does not value innocent human life, at all, for anyone, but rather simply values people’s ability to have what they want, when they want it.
Their actions reflect this clearly, if you observe and listen carefully, though they may or may not actually say the following out loud:
“I want to focus on my career or education right now. I shouldn’t be forced to put those things on hold with a pregnancy”
Translation: My career or diploma/degree is more important than an innocent Life.
“My body- my choice. The government shouldn’t tell me what to do with my body”
Translation: My body is more important than the other body growing inside me. Government can tell people not to kill other people, unless the other person is a living preborn human baby.
“No Man is going to tell me I have to stay pregnant”
Translation: No one (not even one of those “brain-washed” Pro-Life women)can tell me killing a baby is wrong, but since men can’t give birth, I will target them. This makes me sound like a strong independent woman, and a champion of feminism. My independence to do what I want is more important than protecting the innocent human life I want to destroy.
“I’m still young. There are so many things I want to do before becoming a mother”
Translation: I planned the sex part, but didn’t plan on the getting-pregnant part. My personal freedom to have fun is more important than the innocent Life of the human baby that, by definition, means I’m already an expectant mother.
“Everyone is different. It’s a complicated issue. What’s right for you is not always right for someone else”
Translation: Morality is subjective. Dismembering and extracting a living human baby from the womb is only wrong if someone thinks it is wrong, or if personal desires and circumstances are conducive to motherhood at this time. My desire to avoid motherhood is more important than the fact that someone will die as a result of my personal moral standards.
“I am personally pro-life, but think others should have the right to decide for themselves”
Translation: I would never kill one of my own babies, but someone else’s freedom to decide whether or not to kill their baby is more important than the Life they may decide to destroy.
Career, Education, Fun, Independence Vs. An Innocent Human Life
If you’ve read down to this point, you probably fall into three categories:
Pro-Life, Undecided and seeking answers, or Pro-Abortion seeking a reason to change or to find the best line to formulate an angry response with.
Whoever you are, please bear with me just a little longer.
At the end of the day, some would rather focus on perceived “viability” of the human babies being discussed, rather than letting go of everything other than the simple fact-
It is an innocent, Human Life.
Unfortunately, the “viability” argument is deceptive, as it most always focuses on “Viability in the absence of any other assistance”.
Webster defines ‘viability’ a few different ways. Strangely, when describing humans, the term means such things as “able to exist as an independent unit” or “capable of survival outside of the womb”. Yet when discussing other life forms such as eggs or seeds, the meaning somehow suddenly changes to “capable of growing or developing”.
I challenge the notion that seeds or eggs should be categorized in a way that transcends the discussion of human life, but will work to address both views.
If we continue to base the sanctity of life on concepts like “viability” we are destined to become even more murderous than we have been in allowing 55,000,000 babies to be murdered since ‘Roe V. Wade’. There will be countless Terri Schiavo-like court-sanctioned dehydration murders at the behest of adulterous spouses. The dark society in which we live is only a degree away from allowing the “Viability” argument to justify murder of the elderly, the mentally or severely physically handicapped, or infants.
Do not these other groups of people require some sort of assistance that prevents them from living as an “independent unit”?
I know beyond reasonable doubt that my precious two year old little girl simply cannot survive as an “independent unit”. Though a completely healthy child, without assistance to eat or drink or bath or use the “potty”- she would die of starvation, dehydration, or disease. Does this mean that she therefore does not meet the “viability” standard and consequently does not have the same right to life as her eleven year old sister?
Now let’s look at the other definition of “viability” that more accurately describes the preborn baby in the womb, and my two year old daughter. Both are “capable of growing or developing”. The baby in the womb only loses that type of viability when outside forces including the deadly procedure of abortion, ends the baby’s life- which obviously ends all potential for growth or development.
Sadly, many severely disabled people do not meet most of these “viability” definitions.
Though not dependent on the womb, they are dependent on others to feed them, sometimes machines to help them breathe, and cannot survive as an independent unit, and depending upon their age and disability, may no longer be capable of growth or development. Does this mean that the severely disabled, not meeting the “viability” standards that many use, are lawfully or morally subject to neglect or execution?
In closing, I’ll leave you with a few words from a man who was there for the
‘Roe V. Wade’ ruling, Supreme Court Justice Byron White:
Senior Dissenting Justice, Byron R. White, called ‘Roe V. Wade’:
"a constitutional barrier to state efforts to protect human life and by investing mothers and doctors with the constitutionally protected right to exterminate it."
Also saying the Court: "values the convenience of the pregnant mother more than the continued existence and development of the life or potential life that she carries."
“Our fathers, recognizing God as the author of human life, proclaimed it a ‘self evident truth’ that every human being holds from the Creator an inalienable right to live … If this right be denied, no other can be acknowledged. If there be exceptions to this central, this universal proposition, that all men, without respect to complexion or condition, hold from the Creator the right to live, who shall determine what portion of the community shall be slain? And who shall perpetrate the murders?”
-- Joshua R. Giddings, abolitionist, 1858
1 707.1 Murder defined.
2 1. A person who kills another person with malice
3 aforethought either express or implied commits murder.
4 2. “Person”, when referring to the victim of a murder,
5 means an individual human being, without regard to age of
6 development, from the moment of conception, when a zygote is
7 formed, until natural death.
8 3. Murder includes killing another person through any
9 means that terminates the life of the other person including
10 but not limited to the use of abortion-inducing drugs. For
11 the purposes of this section, “abortion-inducing drug” means a
12 medicine, drug, or any other substance prescribed or dispensed
13 with the intent of terminating the clinically diagnosable
14 pregnancy of a woman, with knowledge that the drug will
15 with reasonable likelihood cause the termination of the
16 pregnancy. “Abortion-inducing drug” includes the off-label
17 use of drugs known to have abortion-inducing properties,
18 which are prescribed specifically with the intent of causing
19 an abortion, but does not include drugs that may be known to
20 cause an abortion, but which are prescribed for other medical
22 4. Murder does not include a fetal death as defined in
23 section 144.1 or the spontaneous termination of pregnancy as
24 defined in section 144.29A.
25 Sec. 9. REPEAL. Sections 232.5, 702.20, 707.7, 707.8,
26 707.8A, 707.9, and 707.10, Code 2013, are repealed.
27 Sec. 10. REPEAL. Chapters 135L and 146, Code 2013, are
29 Sec. 11. SEVERABILITY. If any provision of this Act or
30 the application of this Act to any person or circumstances is
31 held invalid, the invalidity shall not affect other provisions
32 or applications of the Act which can be given effect without
33 the invalid provisions or application and, to this end, the
34 provisions of this Act are severable.
35 Sec. 12. EFFECTIVE UPON ENACTMENT. This Act, being deemed
1 of immediate importance, takes effect upon enactment.
3 This bill defines “person” in the context of the victim of
4 the crime of murder to be an individual human being without
5 regard to age of development, from the moment of conception,
6 when the zygote is formed, until natural death.
7 The bill provides that murder includes killing another
8 person through any means that terminates the life of
9 the other person including but not limited to the use of
10 abortion-inducing drugs, and defines “abortion-inducing drug”.
11 The bill also provides that murder does not include a fetal
12 death as defined in Code section 144.1 or the spontaneous
13 termination of pregnancy as defined in Code section 144.29A.
14 The bill makes conforming changes throughout the Code to
15 eliminate any reference to allowing abortions or terminations
16 of pregnancy in keeping with the definition of “murder” under
17 the bill.
18 The bill amends the termination of pregnancy reporting
19 section (Code section 144.29A) to only include the reporting of
20 spontaneous terminations of pregnancy.
21 The bill amends a Code section relating to unfair employment
22 practices (Code section 216.6) to eliminate references to
23 disabilities caused or contributed to by legal abortion.
24 The bill amends a Code section relating to discrimination
25 relating to health insurance abortion coverage (Code section
26 216.13) to eliminate the reference to abortion coverage.
27 The bill strikes and repeals Code provisions that relate
28 to allowing abortions under certain circumstances. The bill
29 repeals Code section 232.5 (abortion performed on a minor —--
30 waiver of notification proceedings), Code section 702.20 (the
31 definition of “viability”), Code section 707.7 (feticide),
32 Code section 707.8 (nonconsensual termination —— serious
33 injury to a human pregnancy), Code section 707.8A (partial
34 birth abortion), Code section 707.9 (murder of a fetus aborted
35 alive), Code section 707.10 (duty to preserve the life of the
1 fetus), Code chapter 135L (notification requirements regarding
2 pregnant minors), and Code chapter 146 (abortions —— refusal
3 to perform). The bill also makes conforming changes to strike
4 references to Code provisions stricken or repealed in the bill.
5 The bill provides for severability of any provision
6 or application of the bill that is held invalid from the
7 provisions or applications of the bill which can be given
8 effect without the invalid provisions or application. The bill
9 takes effect upon enactment.
The highest duty of the States...was to protect the unalienable rights of all persons within their boundaries
"The very highest duty of the States, when they entered into the Union under the Constitution, was to protect all persons within their boundaries in the enjoyment of these 'unalienable rights with which they were endowed by their Creator.'"
-- U.S. v. Cruikshank, 92 U.S. 542 (1875)
Monsignor Ignacio Barreiro-Carámbula
Note: The following comments were adapted from a speech given on May 12, 2012 as part of Italy’s March for Life weekend celebration.
In the defense of life, it is absolutely essential that we are committed to the abolition of all laws and judicial decisions that would permit even a single abortion. But we have to look further ahead to protect in an integral way the whole of human life from its biological beginnings until natural death. The same logic of dominion over life that leads to abortion serves as justification for euthanasia, assisted suicide, as well as contraception and artificial means of fertilization. If a person is capable of deciding on the life or death of the baby in the womb, that person could also make these same decisions over the life of a dying or disabled person under his or her legal care.
Nobody owns his life; no one has the right to euthanasia or assisted suicide. No one has the right to judge if the life of a human person is “not worthy of being lived” and should thus be eliminated.
Behind an apparently compassionate approach to the sufferings of a person that is dying, there is often a strong economic motivation to save society of the expenses of keeping alive a person whose condition has been deemed terminal. Life is the property of the Creator, so only He may decide the time of its beginning and the time of its conclusion; thus neither abortion or euthanasia, suicide, assisted suicide nor any form of artificial conception where human persons decide the time of the beginning or the end of life are permissible.
We have to protect the family which is the cradle of life and encourage generosity with life at a time of demographic winter. We should do everything possible to guarantee children their natural right of being born in a stable family, constituted by a man and woman, and their right to be conceived in natural fashion and not artificially.
The struggle to protect life is closely related to the acceptance or the rejection of the fullness of the Way, the Truth and Life that was brought to the world through the incarnation of the Eternal Word. John Paul II in Centesimus annus, demonstrates that a society cannot live without God in the emptiness of atheism. He finishes this analysis indicating how the Kingdom of God has to have a concrete effect in the life of society, enlightening it and penetrating it with the energies of grace. In light of these principles we can understand the gravity of Italian Law 194 of May 22, 1978 that legalized abortion and of the Law 40 of February 19, 2004 that legalized artificial fertilization. We cannot be in agreement with those that are of the view that Law 194 has to be applied in a correct way as a means of limiting the number of abortions. The first article of this law is totally ambiguous. It states that, “The Republic…. Protects human life from its beginning.” But right away we can ask: who between the partisans of this law is ready to define the beginning of life as its biological beginning? We can try to limit the damages caused by this law applying article 73 of Evangelium vitae, but we can never accept the ideological foundations of the Italian abortion law.
The Italian law that legalizes artificial fertilization is the consequence of view of life in which men think everything he wants to do is licit. Some see this as a consequence of the Enlightenment, but really behind it we have the old demonic temptation that led our first parents to think they could be like God and become the Lords of everything created, instead of accepting that man is only a temporary administrator of a spiritual and material reality that has been entrusted to him during his life on this earth.
Behind this law there is a view in which children are not seen as a gift from God but as a right. This frame of mind of dominion over life is a grave evil in itself, but we also have to be keenly aware of its immediate consequences, which are the death of thousands of newly conceived babies, because many are rejected at implantation in the womb of the mother due to the unnatural means of implantation. There are sources that indicate that in this way more than eighty percent of the embryos produced artificially die before being born.
There is a connection that can never be taken away between the unitive and procreative meanings of the sexual act; this connection should not be broken by man. Artificial fertilization separates procreation from sexuality, and in certain way there is a relation between a contraceptive frame of mind and artificial fertility because we can say it is the reverse.
The defense of life is a fundamental part of building up the common good of society, as John Paul II taught us:
To be actively pro-life is to contribute to the renewal of society through the promotion of the common good. It is impossible to further the common good without acknowledging and defending the right to life, upon which all the other inalienable rights of individuals are founded and from which they develop. A society lacks solid foundations when, on the one hand, it asserts values such as the dignity of the person, justice and peace, but then, on the other hand, radically acts to the contrary by allowing or tolerating a variety of ways in which human life is devalued and violated, especially where it is weak or marginalized.” Then John Paul II adds with sober realism, “There can be no true democracy without a recognition of every person’s dignity and without respect for his rights.
A central element of the common good is the active protection of life as part of a commitment to establish a just and well-organized society under the Social Kingship of Christ, where Faith would be lived with a deep love of the truth, and as a consequence all the social and economic resources should be properly managed to assure a social and economic growth in real terms. A fundamental element in this struggle to establish the common good is generosity with life, because selfishness with life is the consequence of the lack of hope, which is in turn due to a lack faith. This lack of faith and hope leads directly or indirectly to abortion, euthanasia and all sorts of aggressions against the family. This happens also because without a hopeful and strong view of the future grounded in the faith it is difficult to make the permanent commitment which is the essence of marriage. A lived faith would encourage the generosity of families with life and a healthy socioeconomic policy would give them the necessary material security to carry forward their mission.
In the missionary presentation of the faith we should make a courageous and integral effort to communicate the teachings of the Church on life and family, demonstrating how all of them are bound together, and the abandonment of one of them leads to an attack on the others. These teachings are strongly opposed by a world dominated by relativism and hedonism, but without these it impossible to lead a happy and well integrated life. These obstacles should not discourage us, because nothing is impossible with God who always wishes our salvation.
Monsignor Ignacio Barreiro is the executive director of Human Life International’s Rome office. This article reprinted with permission from hliworldwatch.org