Keep abortion debate civil
Why can’t we discuss abortion sensibly? I admit the subject is complicated and painful. Yet abortion is easy to oppose with ordinary science, basic morality and plain speech. I would like supporters to use the same simple honesty.
In the Aspen Times, Maurice Emmer (Aspen Times, Jul 9, 2019, “Time Well Spent”) gave his straightforward judgment. He called abortion baby killing.
My friend Ruth Harrison right away objected to discussion. She resorted to denial. She might have questioned Emmer’s statement. Had she a case, she might have made it. Instead she told him, in effect, to shut up. (Aspen Times, July 11, 2019, “The Enemy is Us”).
Shut up. Really? What have champions of human rights declared over and over, if not every person’s duty to speak up? To protest abuse of any human being — to get loud in defense of the weak and voiceless. Emmer was speaking up. Good for him.
Sadly, Ruth is not the only pro-choice to use denial. How often do I hear otherwise intelligent people deny the unborn are even human? That they have no human rights? This denial is, of course, a plain affront to science. To speak plainly, it is ridiculous. And its depravity is blatant. Its record is horrific. We all know what that same dehumanizing lie did to American Indians and African Americans. We know what it meant for European Jews.
We should know that human rights cannot abide denial. That they require open, honest discussion. We can start where we agree: that when mothers kill their babies — or, if you like, their human offspring, their unborn human cargo — that is not a trifle. We all know it can’t be brushed aside. That silence is impossible. All the denials in the world will never satisfy objections, or make the protests go away.
So let us deal with it patiently. Out of respect for each other, let’s talk sensibly. And honestly. Let us stop denying. For the sake of humanity, let everybody tell the truth, and let’s be unafraid to hear it.