Thursday, July 23, 2015

I Stand for Life

In recent weeks, several videos have been released showing doctors, lab technicians, and executives from Planned Parenthood candidly discussing the practice of selling organs from aborted babies. The videos are chilling, and they are incredibly difficult to watch. The only reason I have watched them is because I wanted to see them for myself instead of just hearing what others had to say about them. Critics have said the videos have been highly edited, but the group responsible for the videos has also released full versions of each video conversation. Regardless of your religious views or opinions on abortion, it's hard to deny that the videos are fairly damning for Planned Parenthood.

I recognize that abortion is a hot-topic issue. I usually try to avoid discussing these issues on the inter webs, not because I shy away from discussing hard topics, but because there is wisdom in knowing when and how to discuss these topics and speak truth. People who claim to be Christians too often mar the name of Jesus with how they respond to these issues, making it that much harder for truth to be shared in love. 

But these videos have hit me hard these past couple of weeks, as we are mourning the loss of our tiny ones. The reminder that our society worships the "right to choose" and allows the atrocity of abortion to continue is a slap in the face to those who face infertility and pray for their miracle babies. As a follower of Christ, I am heartbroken and sickened by the videos. As a woman who desperately wants to have children and can't, I am deeply hurt by these practices. 

The videos shed light on the abortion industry in a way that too many have turned a blind eye to for too long. Defenders of abortion are saying that anti-abortion extremists are taking private conversations out of context, just to attack women's healthcare. As someone who is unapologetically pro-life, my stance against abortion has nothing to do with denying women healthcare and everything to do with protecting innocent life.

The reality of the abortion industry is not new, but the continued support of and blind eye to what they do is appalling. These videos further highlight the depravity of the human heart, and how we have strayed so far from truth. In the aftermath of this conversation, we have seen {and will continue to see} the justification for murdering babies. I am not some right-wing fundamentalist, but I cannot dress up the reality of what abortion is: murder. And if you support abortion, you support the murder of an innocent life. You're not pro-choice, you are pro-murder.

"It's not a baby, it's just a clump of cells."
The very fact that organs are being harvested from aborted fetuses debunks this argument. This is what harms the pro-abortion argument the most. If there is not a human life {as they claim}, then how can you harvest the organs of that human life? It cannot be "just a clump of cells" and a human from which you can harvest organs. 

While doctors and science assisted in the process, I know that my babies were created by a loving God, and the very idea that these tiny lives are not valued in our society is a pain that is almost too much to bear. Even at their tiniest and most vulnerable of state {an embryo}, they are image bearers of the living God. I saw this "clump of cells" for myself, and I was even more convinced in that moment of the life they represented.

"But I have a right to my body, the right to choose."
And what about the baby's right to choose? That baby did not choose to be conceived, and he/she certainly did not choose to be murdered. Why is it that when a child is wanted, he/she is a person to be protected and cared for, but when he/she is not wanted, he/she is to be aborted and dismembered?

Why is it illegal to kill an unborn child if the mother wants the baby, but it is legal to kill an unborn child if the mother does not want the baby? Why are we as a society allowed to treat an unwanted fetus as a human without rights? Why does the mother's "rights" supersede those of the baby? Just because the baby cannot speak up for and defend itself? The right of a woman not to be pregnant and the right of a baby to not be killed are not equal rights; wouldn't the value of protecting a life be far more important than the value of not being burdened with a responsibility you don't want?

"It's just part of the procedure. The patient consents to the tissue being donated."
Does the patient truly understand what she is consenting to? Is she {and he, don't want to forget dad} aware that her baby is being methodically torn apart to be sold for parts? This isn't just a matter of doing something with medical waste {ugh, I hate even using that term}. They are planning which babies would have the best body parts to sell. They are modifying the procedures to accommodate the sales. If the demand is for livers, they are sure to crush the baby in a way that would allow the most intact livers. If the demand is for calvaria {head}, they are sure to turn the baby and extract feet first so they ensure the most intact calvaria. And they are purposefully skirting the laws to avoid backlash. They are consulting with their legal team and other clinics to be sure they all have the same story and don't get caught. This is not openly public information; they hide this information. Evil hides in the dark and avoids the light.

"We're not selling human body parts {which is a criminal offense}"
When you receive any form of compensation in the exchange of goods, you are selling said goods. If you truly wanted to donate in the name of science, then don't receive any form of compensation, $100, $30, or $0.01. But even if this is truly Planned Parenthood's stance {which I do not believe it is}, then why do they have an entire legal team advising them on how to ensure their practice is not viewed as breaking the law? This argument would never fly in the corporate world. 

We must not be blind to the depravity of the human heart. If there is a way to make a profit, people will find a way: legal or illegal. So if Planned Parenthood as an organization doesn't condone the practice of receiving compensation for body parts, you can bet that there are individual clinics out there that are finding ways to profit. There should be oversight. Not legal teams advising you how to "interpret" the laws in a way that favors your pocketbook.

"Planned Parenthood participates in tissue donation programs that support lifesaving scientific research."
This is such an incredibly ironic and deeply saddening statement. For an organization who categorically opposes saving the life of the unborn, it is twisted that they would then turn around and want to support lifesaving scientific research. How have we become so blind? 

I can understand wanting to support lifesaving research. I pray every day for a cure for Crohn's Disease. And I know that has to come from the dedication and hard work that comes through scientific research. But despite my desire to live in a world without Crohn's Disease, Cancer, MS, ALS, Lupus, or any other myriad of diseases, I do NOT wish that to come at the cost of innocent lives. With all of our advances in human technology and the smart people out there, surely there is a better way. We cannot be ok with sacrificing innocent children and touting "lifesaving scientific research." 

"Women need access to healthcare; who are you to deny them that right?"
I don't argue this point; women do need access to healthcare. But if we are going to talk about "choice," then we need to be honest and truly offer ALL choices, not just abortion. Planned Parenthood's foundation and bottom line runs on abortions, not women's healthcare, regardless of what they say. And now that we have the Affordable Care Act, PP is not the only place that women can access affordable healthcare {and other options...something necessary to truly have a "choice"}. To believe otherwise is simply false. I want my tax dollars to actually go to women's healthcare, not abortions. And while they may say that the money cannot be used for abortions, anyone with a basic understanding of how a business runs knows this is a smokescreen argument.

Women need to be made to feel like abortion is not their only choice. Women need to be supported and loved, encouraged and celebrated as strong and valued. If I am honest, I can fairly admit that the church has not done this well, and we need to do this better. An unplanned pregnancy is not a death sentence, but abortion most certainly is. Speak up for the life of the unborn. Love the women who find themselves in a place of fear and hurt. Love and care for both mom and baby.


This news will be a short blip on the radar of our liberal media. The pro-life movement will shout from the rooftops for a time, but it will eventually be buried in favor of a more sensational story {apparently the chosen story now is Cecil...umm, what??} Followers of Christ, we cannot turn a blind eye to this horrific story. We cannot deem it sensationalized and ignore the reality of what is happening in clinics across this nation. Our hearts must break for the things that break the heart of God. And I can assure you; the mass murder of tiny lives most assuredly breaks the heart of God.

This is not a matter of choice. This is a matter, literally, of life and death.

"The horrifying knowledge of harvested baby hearts must lead to our own broken hearts." 
- Albert Mohler

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