The Honest Abortion Debate

03/02/2006

Science has learned much since Roe v. Wade.

A bill that would ban almost all abortions is headed to the desk of South Dakota Governor Mike Rounds, who has indicated that he will sign it into law. Prepare for all hell to break loose.

There will be much lively debate about such things as states' rights, women's rights, and the weakness of Roe vs. Wade as law. And while these topics may shape the legal framework of the abortion debate, the real battle for life lies in the hearts and minds of the average American.

One Sunday talk show featured a Democratic leader decrying the law as pointless because "abortions will not decrease just because it's illegal." Indeed, one pro-abortion website has already posted "an abortion primer" urging average women to learn how to perform abortions in case their local doctors will not.

One would logically conclude that an abortion clinic on every street corner might encourage more abortions and, conversely, abortions would decline if they were not glorified and encouraged. However, abortion will not go away simply because it's outlawed. Like any other practice that society would deem immoral, such as drug use, sodomy, or prostitution, people will find a way to do it if they believe it will meet their self-serving interests.

The abortion debate will only be won through education and persuasion, leading to a change of mind about the value of life itself. Women (and men) must be forced to honestly look at the core issues of abortion. It's not about the law. It's not about a woman's body. It's not even about religious tradition.
Abortion must be viewed scientifically and morally.

Science has made great leaps in the last three decades. Parents can peek into the womb with 3-D ultrasounds and see if a baby boy has his father's nose. Mothers experiencing complicated pregnancies can deliver any time in the third trimester (and, in some cases, even sooner) and watch her daughter grow into a normal, healthy girl.

From a purely scientific point of view, we know that life begins long before birth. Some would argue that it begins at conception. Others believe it's more accurately tied to brain activity some time around the 26th week of gestation. Intelligent arguments exist for other stages in between as organs develop, senses begin to function, and normal human patterns take place, such as sleeping, breathing, and yawning. The idea that any child in the third trimester can be killed simply for convenience is truly barbaric, and the vast majority of Americans will admit it.

Once people face up to the scientific facts of a baby in the womb, they must make a moral choice, and that is where the actual debate must take place. Those of us who believe that every life is a gift from God, sacred and worth protecting, will preach this message of hope and love. Those who believe that a woman's right to do whatever she pleases supersede the child's right to live will continue to make their argument. But at least we will be debating a moral issue from a scientifically factual position, instead of this pseudo-scientific political rallying that seems to drown out all honest discussion.

"This is an issue affecting real people, real lives around the states and potentially around the country," said Kate Looby of South Dakota Planned Parenthood.

She's exactly right. There are real people whose lives are at stake. The least we can do is have an honest debate about when life begins and when we begin to value it.
 



Author: James Robison

Word Count: 585

About the author: James Robison is the founder and president of LIFE Outreach International, an international humanitarian aid ministry; host of the television program, Life Today; and author of The Absolutes.

Media Contact: Randy Robison, editor at jamesrobison.net

Photo available upon request. Reprint rights granted with attribution for complete, unedited article. Revisions allowed only with approval.

 

 

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