Who Has the More Radical Social Agenda?
Last month, Abort73 had 78,688 visitors. It's the most visitors we've ever had in a single month. I am thrilled to see the steady growth of Abort73.com, but it does come at an emotional price. Though the percentage of angry feedback is relatively small, it adds up quickly as traffic increases. Here are some of less than flattering comments that have come in recently:
"A lot of misinformation and propaganda."
"Lying fear mongering propaganda being used to deceive people into taking women's rights away."
"Grossly inaccurate scientific information, fearmongering, actively misleading, morally reprobate."
"There is no god, you people are doing so much harm to women everywhere, you should be ashamed. you and your god have no business in my vagina. it is called science....and basic $*#!! understanding. $*#!! idiots.. people like you make me work harder to protect womens rights you right wing patriarchal fascists!"
"Abort73.com is $*#!!. It is completely biased and full of wild speculations, attempting to guilt trip people into thinking that they are 'murdering' the 'defenseless'."
"The people who run this website should have been aborted. You are all beyond ignorant, and I take pleasure knowing that one day people will think of the ones who were against abortion and laugh/not really believe you existed what so ever. Religion is waste of time. Get a life and leave others to live."
"this website is a mental abortion....stupid people with stupid ideas that should have been aborted themselves years ago."
"I think sites like this are absolutely repulsive… Closed minded zombies."
"Religious crazy people, insane people in a insane cult. All over the world, overpopulation is a serious issue. Both mothers and children are dying because they wouldn't do an abortion in time."
"People don't need to be told what to think and coerced into those beliefs with propaganda. People should think for themselves and make their own choices even if someone else doesn't agree with it"
"You're a nasty group of self-righteous thugs."
I get the impression that some abortion opponents are more naturally inclined to take a sort of Matthew 5:11 delight in eliciting anger like this. I can barely stomach such remarks. Each one grieves me; each one feels like a weight on my heart. In an actual dialogue, I can question such remarks in an effort to steer the conversation to a more profitable end. When people have to more specifically explain their criticism, they are often unable to do so. Remarks submitted online, often anonymously, don't provide the same opportunities. Without addressing each criticism individually, you'll notice a common theme: broad, sweeping claims of misinformation and religious narrowness. Even though we use no biblical arguments for the first 30+ pages of our Case Against Abortion, and even though we consistently cite standard, mainstream sources, these are the knee-jerk arguments abortion advocates throw up. Dialogue can be hard to come by.
Amidst remarks like the ones above, we also receive stories that help me to stay the course and avoid despair–stories from women who have aborted and cry out with regret. If only they'd known.If only they hadn't been so pressured. If only it hadn't been so easy. But what do we do with stories from women who have had an abortion and maintain that it was one of the greatest blessings in their life. Though such stories make up only about 5% of the testimonies we receive, two of them came in this last month, and I want to deal with them fairly. There is no getting around the fact that many aborting women seem to bear no physical or emotional baggage for their decision. That being said, we must remind ourselves that even if every aborting women counted her abortion a blessing and relief, it would make the act itself no less condemnable. In considering these stories of "celebration," there are a number of things to draw out. The first story comes from a 38-year-old woman in New Mexico:
I had an abortion when I was 25. The man I was physically abusive and also I had been doing a lot of drugs at that time. I'm so grateful that I could choose to not bring that child into the world, and it was a wake up call for me to find a better boyfriend and to stop doing drugs. I'm so glad that I didn't have to have that man's child, as I'm sure he would have been a bad father and a bad husband, and I think there would have been a good chance the child would have had health issues from all the drugs I was doing. Abortion gave me the chance to change my life and pick a great dad for my kids. Abortion allowed me the chance to not ruin 2 lives, mine and that child that would have been born.
You may notice that her entire premise is built on a significant misunderstanding. She says, "I'm so grateful that I could choose to not bring that child into the world." Abortion does not keep a child from coming into the world. It kills a child that is already in the world and living in the mother's womb. To deny this requires that you define the beginning of human life in very "spiritual" terms. The biology is clear. Human development begins at fertilization. The only reason she can conclude that abortion kept her from ruining 2 lives is because she is denying the fact that abortion ended one life. The concerns she has about drug use and the moral character of her boyfriend are great reasons to not get pregnant, but horrible reasons to have an abortion. We do not kill children who have abusive fathers and drug-addicted mothers. Nobody would suggest such a "solution" after birth. It is no more reasonable a suggestion before birth.
The second story, from a 59-year-old woman in Los Angeles, covers some of the same things, with far more contempt:
I have received two abortions in my life. One when I was 23 and one when I was 32. The first one was in Canada and the second one was in Los Angeles. I was poor and single and the thought of bringing a child into my life and subjecting it to my poverty and imposing a greater burden on my already difficult circumstance, did not seem fair to the child. I had no extended family and I was not going to become another single mother on welfare chained to a cycle of poverty. Having the abortions was the smartest thing I could have done as I was able to move forward and create a life that pulled me up out of the depression and poverty that my family of origin had sentenced me to. I have never regretted it, suffered over it. I didn't even cry when it happened because I don't perceive a fetus as a "baby". It is a human fetus that I had NOT invited into my body. I pity the poor girls stuck in religious mindwashing who still get abortions (and many of them do if they can) but are made to feel guilty about it. The thought of a future where every woman who gets pregnant is forced to have the child reminds me of Authoritarian States where the Government makes choices for you. What's next? Women being forced to conceive because that is their function according to the bible? It's because of Anti-choice organizations like yours that America is increasingly being seen as a backwoods nation filled with fundamentalists who have infiltrated the government and are trying to impose their radical social agenda's on others. Gee, I wonder where else in the world that is happening?
Like the first woman, she is positioning abortion as an act of mercy to her child. And like the first woman, she has made a baseless moral distinction between killing a human fetus and killing a human newborn. It is her last remark, however, that particularly stands out. She labels Abort73's position on abortion as a "radical social agenda." Think about that claim for a moment and then look at our page of abortion pictures. As you do, ask yourself, which is the more radical social agenda? The one that says mother's should have the legal right to kill their innocent, helpless offspring, or the one that believes innocent human beings should be protected by law from those who would violently destroy them? If there is a "radical social agenda" being espoused, I don't think it is ours.
Michael Spielman is the founder and director of Abort73.com. His book, Love the Least (A Lot), is available as a free download. You can also find him on Facebook and Google+. Abort73 is part of Loxafamosity Ministries, a 501c3, Christian education corporation. If you have been helped by the information available at Abort73.com, please consider making a donation.