Saturday, December 13, 2008

Rationalizing Abortion: Paper, Plastic, or Death?

We've come to the point in society where, for some, there is no right and wrong. Or, perhaps we've come to the point in postmodern society where the moral power of universal reason has become so diminished that objective standards of how to live a life of divine goodness have absolutely no implications for personal ethics.

Think about what is really good in the world - or should be good - as you read
this account of the throwaway choice for an abortion, which doesn't sound any more ethically-challenging than deciding whether you want cream with your coffee at the drive-through at McDonald's:

I had a long conversation today with my best college friend's younger sister, who has just found herself unexpectedly pregnant at 21. She wanted to talk to me about making a decision about keeping it, but by the time I finally got her on the phone she was pretty much settled on an abortion. So we talked through logistics, when she could get an appointment, whom she had to go with her. We talked about how it feels to confront and unplanned pregnancy, particularly when you were raised, as she and I both were, with a very black and white view on abortion; that view being, It Is Wrong. She was at the point, which I remember very well from both of my unplanned pregnancies, of just barely believing this had happened to her and dealing with the strangeness she felt at recognizing herself as someone who could chose to end a pregnancy. It just was not a choice she ever imagined she would make, not a situation she ever imagined herself in. She was realizing that she was totally wrong in her sense of who she was; or who she was the last time she actively checked in on it, at any rate.
This should be shocking to read but it's not, sadly - the idea that moral choices have consequences is totally alien to a culture that's abandoned any inkling of a life of universal good. Folks like this probably put more effort in deciding "paper or plastic" at the supermarket checkout line: "Um, let's see, should I save some trees or reduce carbon emissions?"

Both of these characters agreed that "abortion is wrong." For me, though, when something's wrong, one should look to do what's right. You don't cave to the path of least resistance, which in this case is to murder the unborn by excercising "freedom of choice."


Can it ever be denied - when such callousness is before our eyes - that contemporary liberalism is in essence a culture of death?

Look at this rationalizing: She "was realizing that she was totally wrong in the sense of who she was ..." Well, you think?

Where in this discussion is the normal human response of ... "Wow! awesome! You're having a baby! I can't believe it! I'm thrilled! This is the most important thing you will ever do with your life! This is the most important responsiblity you will ever have in your life! This is why we are alive, to fulfill God's plan to be fertile and multiply and do good for others, that is to live life! How can I help you bring this miracle into the world?


Nope, none of that. Instead we see the 21 year-old's story bringing forth memories of previous abortions (or so it seems). How utterly bankrupt. God, that is depressing (and objectively offensive)

The title of the post is "
Doing As One Likes." It should have been titled "Doing What is Right," and that would have been to refuse to toss around meaningless words about "abortion is wrong," and to instead just suck oneself up to the mountain of ethical reason and choose life.

11 comments:

Grace Explosion said...
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Grace Explosion said...
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Donald Douglas said...

"God help us all..."

That pretty much sums it up, Grace!

Grace Explosion said...
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Donald Douglas said...

"Donald, whatever I ever accomplish, so much is due to the fire with which your articles "stoke me" and the grief of my spirit that only ministering spiritual strength to the body will assuage."

You're welcome, Laura! I have confidence you will achieve your goals, and we'll all be better for it.

Angie said...

The name of her blog, "B1tch Ph D." and that horrid banner image of a kid (is she like 5?) giving the finger should leave one to expect nothing less than moral bankruptcy. I tried to read the rest of the blog, and frankly, it was actually rather boring and lacking in substance. The most frustrating part is that characters like "B1tch Ph. D." are coddled in the education system, media and entertainment industries. How horrifying for the rest of us.

TRUTH 101 said...

What is both tragic and ironic about this subject Professor, is that a major reason abortion on demand for any reason is still avalable is that is is in the interests of the right wing to keep it that way. Any number of times legislation has gone through Congress and state legislatures trying to limit abortion to only cases that threaten the life and health of the mother or baby. Invariably some well meaning right wing fool like former senator Rick Santorum will amend the bill to make all abortion illegal. We can all agree that abortion as a means of birth control is shameful and I totally agree it should be made illegal. To impose restrictions against those that may have a difficult choice to make due to other considerations is also shameful and best left to those involved.

Gayle said...

The first thing I thought of when I saw that woman's blog was exactly like what your commenter Angie thought of. "Bitch PHD" and a small child giving everyone the finger! This moronic woman (I don't care whether she has a PHD or not, she's still a moron!) tells everyone exactly who she is without even opening her evil mouth!

Dear Lord in heaven, I hate to think of people like that influencing anyone.

postulant K said...

A beautiful post, Dr. Douglas. You're so right in the fact that most people put more thought into the "Paper or Plastic" choices in life than the important ones. It is so very sad that our culture most often views pregnancy as a burden or an inconvenience. Like you, I've often thought about how friends and families reactions to the news can play a role in how the pregnancy is viewed. Think what a difference it could make by the simple act of rejoicing to the news of life, instead of immediately thinking of the burden that has been handed you.

Philippe Ohlund said...

Great post, Donald! :-)

Grace, your comment, "We cannot stand, Donald, if we do not retain God in our minds", is excellent.

Law and Order Teacher said...

Since when did exterminating a human life become the equivalent of taking out the garbage. Human life is precious. I've seen it taken, done it, and regretted it. For those who do it with a lack of conscience, I feel sorry for you.