At one of our recent meetings we discussed many different road blocks you meet in a conversation about abortion and how to work through them. The following is a list of things you
might hear while discussing abortion and some responses that might be
useful. Keep in mind that you should always find common ground before challenging
someone on their beliefs about abortion. Why? People are not pro-choice because
they want to kill babies – they’re usually pro-choice because they are
compassionate towards women. We need to show them that their compassion for the
mother is beautiful and good, and then encourage them to extend that compassion
to the fetus being carried by the mother!
1) Statement: It’s just a
clump of cells.
Response: I am too! I’m
just a bigger clump of cells than a fetus.
2) Statement: Abortion should
be allowed if the mother was raped.
Response: I believe the
rapist should be punished for his crime with a severe sentence...but should the child be given the death sentence for the
actions of his/her father?
3) Statement: The fetus is
part of the mother.
the fetus is not actually a part of the mother, but a separate entity from the
mother. Certainly the mother is carrying the fetus inside her body, but the
fetus is not part of her. For example, the mother could be carrying a male
fetus in her womb (which is determined from the moment of conception). The
child is male and she is female – they cannot be the same individual. This is
also clear if you look at the other components of a woman’s body. Her organs
service her body: her lungs allow her to breathe…her kidneys filter her blood.
The baby is not just another organ in her body but instead a separate human organism in her womb that is not present
to service her body.
4) Statement: I cannot have
an opinion about abortion because I am a man.
Response: If I had my two
year old beside me and I was going to kill her, would you stop me? (Of course) Why? (Because it’s wrong to kill her) Why is it wrong? (Because you’re killing a human being) Why
would you protect a two year old and not the child in my womb? You are a human
being and therefore you have every right to protect all other human beings from
being killed, including those still unborn.
5) Statement: If the
pregnancy could kill the mother, she should be able to have an abortion.
Response: I believe any
woman with health concerns in pregnancy should have access to necessary
treatment. For example, I believe a woman with cancer should be able to receive
chemotherapy or radiation to treat her cancer even though this will likely kill
the child in her womb. Cancer therapy aims to treat the woman’s medical
condition; abortion aims to kill a human being. These are fundamentally
different options even though the fetus may die when the woman receives the
appropriate therapy for her health condition. A therapeutic abortion is never
necessary for women with health conditions.
6) Statement: It’s not a
Response: Do you believe
in human rights? Do you believe in human rights for all human beings? Human
life begins at the moment of conception, therefore the unborn should receive
the same human right to life that we have. Also, women were not considered
persons until 1929…the law has been wrong before and the status of personhood
has been denied to millions around the world in the past.
7) Statement: It’s not even
human…it’s a ‘potential human’.
Response: Science tells
us that human life begins at the moment of conception when a new individual is
formed with a unique set of DNA with forty six chromosomes distinct from its
parents. (Check out the science in any reputable biology or embryology textbook or at: https://www.princeton.edu/~prolife/articles/embryoquotes2.html)
8) Statement: It’s a
Response: If something
has human parents, is it human offspring?
9) Statement: It doesn’t look
Response: We must judge
appearance based on a human’s level of development. You do not judge a newborn
by the standard appearance of a two year old, so why would you judge a fetus by
the standard appearance of a newborn? The fetus looks like what it’s supposed
to look like for its level of development.
I have one other tip to offer you
today for conversations about abortion: be
as loving as you can be! Many people have been personally wounded by
abortions and are not ready to speak about abortion from a solely scientific or logical perspective.
Let them know that you are pro-life, pro-dignity, and pro-respect for them as well as every other human being.