I’m pro-choice. I’ll get that out of the way right now. I am also a firm supporter of free expression.
On Sept. 17 and 18, pro-life group Project Truth held events in front of the library at our school, Las Positas College. The group posted seven-foot-tall images of aborted fetuses and distributed informational pamphlets with the same images.
The moral implication of abortion is a more than valid topic for debate. To the same degree that anti-abortion advocates have a right guaranteed by the first amendment to present pictures of dead fetuses to argue their point, I have the right to argue that doing so amounts to nothing more than mental terrorism.
Titled, long-windedly, “You Can Help Break Down the Wall of Injustice!” the 12-page pamphlet handed out at the event contains images of whipped slaves, animal slaughter, the Holocaust and severed heads. That’s just pages two and three.
Page four contains the same images of aborted fetuses which were displayed so prominently on campus. The main point of the pamphlet suggests that abortion is an injustice on the scale of the Holocaust, human slavery and the indiscriminate slaughter of animals.
While each of these points is debatable—the use of each set of images is questionable, at best.
The pro-life movement uses pictures of dead children like some use porn or Al-Qaeda uses propaganda. It’s a set of words and images designed to provoke an intended response. Even on free speech grounds, Christian moral crusaders would never approve the use of pornography or anything having to do with Muslims.
They have no interest in free speech other than to further their own agenda.
It’s free speech in the sense that one side of an argument has their say and then the conversation hits a brick wall. Take a closer look through their pamphlet and see what Project Truth thinks of anyone who disagrees with them.
Page 12 of the pamphlet quotes from the Bible and says that those who disagree with their position face the “wrath of God” unless they “call out to God for forgiveness and (their) trust in Jesus Christ today.”
As a rule of thumb, I can’t take seriously any earthly human being who claims the absolute authority of God. James 4:12 states “There is only one lawgiver and judge, he who is able to save and to destroy. But who are you to judge your neighbor?”
Some balance or credence to the opinions of others always furthers a discussion.
The definitive look on the topic of abortion is the 2007 documentary “Lake of Fire.” The film, directed by “American History X’s” Tony Kaye was filmed over the course of 16 years and contains objective interviews with multitudes of people on both sides of debate. It is unflinching and painfully graphic—but at no point are Kaye’s personal feelings on the topic made known.
My favorite quote in the film comes from Noam Chomsky, a noted liberal who nevertheless presents what is, at the very least, the best possible framework for the debate itself.
“You are not going to get answers from holy texts,” Chomsky said. “You are not going to get the answers from biologists. These are matters of human concern that have to be discussed seriously, reasonably (and) with attention to the array of differing values that people have and different decisions they may come to under similar circumstances.”
The topic of abortion is not as black and white as some would have you believe. In reality, it is an issue colored with the deepest shades of gray.
My personal opinion is that no one has a right to tell anyone else what to do with their bodies and that a child in the womb belongs to the mother, no one else.
As a man, I consider any other feelings I have on the topic to be moot. What I would concede to the other side though, is that there are deep moral issues to be discussed on the matter of abortion.
Shoving pictures of dead children in people’s faces is not the way to start that conversation.
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