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Last night I saw a disturbing photo and story on Facebook. It wasn’t the picture that bothered me as much as the story that went along with it. The picture, hopefully without going into too much detail was of a baby that had been aborted later in the pregnancy, around 6 months if the accompanying story is to be believed. The story was a first person dialog of the baby saying something to mommy each month. It would say I am so many months old, and include a fact about the baby’s growth, and then baby says how much he loves mommy. Each month there would be more first person dialog with another fact and more of baby talking to mommy. It goes up to 6 months, and talks about how mommy went to the doctor and the doctor “told you I’m not a baby”, and ended with the baby being in heaven and asking mommy why didn’t you want me?
This doesn’t offend me because I am pro-choice, because I’m 100% pro-life. this doesn’t offend me because I think the picture is too graphic, because I think that if we as a society think that it is acceptable to do this to babies, we as a society should be able to stomach the pictures. This offends me because it is intentionally inflammatory and excessively plays on the emotions and the point seems to be to hurt mothers who have had or ever thought of having an abortion.
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As a pro-lifer I believe that there is no legitimate reason to have an abortion. I don’t agree with abortion because of rape or incest, or a high number of multiples from fertility treatment, or because the doctors say he is going to have a disability or won’t live past a year (or two months or a week). The only reason I can see being a real reason is if the mother is legitimately in life threatening danger from the pregnancy.
My battle with infertility is not what drove me to this belief. I have always been pro-life, and would choose this topic sometimes for persuasive papers, and would argue my point with anybody who wanted to argue with me. The truth is that you can always give a baby up for adoption. I know that carrying that baby for nine months can make it hard to give it up, but the majority of the time it was your choice to have sex and take the chance (and 100% of the time it is not the baby’s fault). Therefore people should own up to their mistakes and be responsible enough to do the right thing, even if it’s not the easy thing. My battle with infertility certainly has an effect on how I feel now, but my pro-life inclinations have not changed.
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However, this story is over the top. While I believe that a baby is a real person from the moment of conception, I don’t believe that a baby has the cognitive ability to think formed thoughts and love and feel rejected. Also, without getting into a theological debate, I, as a Seventh Day Adventist, believe that when we die we do not go straight to heaven but instead stay ‘sleeping’ until the second coming of Christ. So I also don’t believe that aborted babies, nor miscarried babies are in heaven, but I do believe we will meet them in heaven. Bottom line this story meant to play on the emotions of women is inappropriate and is nearly as detrimental to the pro-life cause as protestors who tightrope on the line between peaceful protesting and criminal behavior, and those who ignore it completely.
The fact is that late term abortions are very rare, and I’m not even sure how legal they are. And a baby, aborted at any stage, is not thinking “Why Mommy?” This doesn’t make abortion any more right in my mind, but it’s misguided to act as though every abortion is a late abortion and that the babies are aware of what is happening and thinking “How could Mommy do this to me? I love her so much.”
This was not my attempt to start a debate, neither to offend any pro-choicers nor any pro-lifers who think this tactic is necessary and acceptable. Everybody has to decide for themselves what is right, and then do it, because everybody has to answer to God, not to each other. This is just one of the things I feel strongly about, and had to get off my chest.
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