Human Personhood v. Conflict of Interest

Judie Brown
by Stephanie Hopping
January 1, 2011
Reproduced with Permission

The problem of past decades has always been in defining abortion within a political framework. In 2011, we should define it in terms of human rights. To do so will require true grit similar to that which defines Pastor Walter Hoye II. In a recent "Conflict of Interest" column, Pastor Hoye wrote:

According to the American Right To Life Partial Birth Abortion (PBA) Ban summary, "Gonzales v. Carhart is the most brutal ruling in the history of the U.S. Supreme Court and is a virtual manual on how abortionists can continue to perform late-term and even partial-birth abortions. The ban and ruling explicitly keeps partial-birth abortion legal with the justices declaring what the misguided regulation obviously indicates, that the abortionist can deliver the baby to the navel (a four-inch variation on standard PBA) and then kill him or her; and he can even perform a textbook PBA if the mother is over dilated; and the justices list other ways the same late-term child can be killed, and they suggest that these other methods may indeed be more violent (and thus more painful to the fetus) than PBA itself, but they justify this in that the ban improves the public perception of the abortion industry."

Now I am quoting the ruling verbatim: "In addition, if intact D&E is truly necessary in some circumstances, a prior injection to kill the fetus [i.e., offspring or little one] allows a doctor to perform the procedure, given that the Acts prohibition only applies to the delivery of a living fetus [i.e., offspring or little one], 18 U. S. C. 1531(b)(1)(A) [emphasis added]. Planned Parenthood of Central Mo. v. Danforth, 428 U. S. 52, 77-79, distinguished." Brothers, Margaret Sanger admits abortion takes an innocent human life. Even todays Supreme Court justices admit abortion takes an innocent human life.

As we move closer to Saturday, January 1, 2011, I wonder what have we learned from our past. Today, can we admit abortion is an incontestable evil that takes an innocent human life? Today, can we admit that abortion is a sin, that abortion has no moral component whatsoever, that abortion does not liberate or empower the lives of women, that we, as the Body of Christ, have thought more about our own welfare than the welfare of women and children? Today, can we admit that we have shamefully tolerated the death of children, instead of rising up to save and provide for the life of children? If not, why not? Saturday, January 1, 2011 starts a New Year. Ending abortion in 2011 starts with us! I wonder what could be holding us back.

Brothers, we really need to talk.

Hoye is challenging you, me and every American concerned with human rights for all to be careful about what we do and how we frame our message. Understanding that the preborn human being is equal in every way to you and to me is challenging for many. In fact, it is safe to say that we are a minority. Most prefer to avoid humanizing that baby and discuss his fate in the context of politics instead. 2011 is the year to change that, to refocus, to do things differently.

In a recent essay, American Life League communications director Shaun Kenney expressed it this way,

Let me give you five good reasons why personhood is the right strategy for the upcoming decade:

1. Personhood is bringing new people into the pro-life movement. Period. Its no secret that many evangelicals and Catholics view abortion through the eyes of faith. Such a view encourages us to look at abortion as an attack on the human familythe Body of Christ. For this, Christians seek the common good of all those members, and will not sacrifice a single one to gain a greater goal. That sort of ethiccommon to any member of Americas military or emergency personnelis easily identifiable, and strikes deep in the heart of the souls of those disillusioned with what are perceived to be half measures.

2. Personhood is bringing new money into the pro-life movement. When you hear the phrase "scarce resources" bantered about, its from the perspective that pro-lifers are old, dying, with pensions and savings accounts being dwindled away every day. That sort of defeatism (and it is defeatism) is precisely what has driven away any donor from any organization, regardless of the cause. With personhood, there is a battle plan and a light at the end of the tunnel.

3. Who believes personhood is the right strategy? Planned Parenthood. In 2008, and in Colorado alone, Planned Parenthood committed over $10 million towards defeating the Colorado Personhood Amendment. In 2010, they spent over $3 million doing the same. $3 million multiplied by 30 efforts across the country puts Planned Parenthood and the abortion industry out of business in monthsnot years.

4. Personhood works in tandem with every pro-life strategy embarked upon over the last four decades. This is where we get to the "breathing with both lungs" argumentthere is no threat to other efforts by engaging communities in personhood, other than the traditional resistance to new ideas.

5. One in three Americans is already on the side of Personhood. Marketers would argue that the idea is "pre-sold" to the American public. Whats more, certain states stand a better chance than Colorado (arguably a battleground state if there ever was one) in passing personhood legislation and state amendments. All it takes is for one state to pass personhood and the likelihood of a 5-4 decision in the U.S. Supreme Court upholding personhood, though a coin flip, is altogether better than never taking the chance at all.

When thinking about resolutions for 2011, remember that it is our responsibility to speak for the preborn babies and to ensure their protection. In Gods eyes, all human persons are equal and deserving of the life He gave. We should take this new year and resolve to demand that our voices be heard. For, if we do not, the voices of preborn babies will forever remain silenced.