1995 Pro-life Victories
A. A. Granke, Jr.
As Christians ought (1 Tim 2:1-4), we have been praying for our government and all men, that they might come to know the truth, and that God would help our leaders make right decisions which accord with his will. "For righteousness exalteth a nation, but sin is a reproach to any people" (Prov. 14:34). In regard to the abortion issue, here are eight reasons why we should realize that God has been hearing and answering our prayers (James 5:16), that there is more reason than ever to keep praying (1 Thess. 5:17), and that we ought to be abundant in our thanksgiving to God for honoring our requests (Phil. 4:6).
1. Last August, Norma McCorvey was baptized in a Dallas, Texas, swimming pool. She renounced her lesbian lifestyle, now even opposes all abortion, and works for Operation Rescue headquarters, in Dallas. Not by any means the only woman to abandon the pro-abortion cause on religious grounds - indeed, many others have done the same; but as the "Jane Roe" of the infamous 1979 U.S. Supreme Court Roe v. Wade decision which established murder of the unborn as a "fundamental Constitutional right," she is, by far, the highest profile defection from their ranks.
2. Feminists and social liberals are beginning to recognize flaws in their pro-abortion position, and are emphatically saying so. For ex-ample, in the October edition of The New Republic, America's fore-most liberal magazine, feminist Naomi Wolf criticized the abortion movement. She wrote:
To its own ethical and political detriment, the pro-choice movement has relinquished the moral frame around the issue of abortion. It has ceded the language of right and wrong to abortion foes. The movement's abandonment of what Americans have always, and rightly, demanded of their movements - an ethical core - and its reliance in-stead on a political rhetoric in which the fetus means nothing are proving fatal.
We are also in danger of losing something more important than votes. We stand in jeopardy of losing what can only be called our souls. Clinging to a rhetoric about abortion in which there is no life and no death, we entangle our beliefs in a series of self delusions, fibs, and evasions. And we risk becoming precisely what our critics charge us with being: callous, selfish, and casually destructive men and women who share a cheapened view of human life.
Any doubt that our current pro-choice rhetoric leads to disaster should be dispelled by the famous recent defection of the woman who had been Jane Roe. What happened to Norma McCorvey? To judge by her characterization in the elite media and by some prominent pro choice feminists, nothing very important. Her change of heart about abortion was relentlessly "explained away" as having everything to do with the girlish motivations of insecurity, fickleness and the need for attention, and little to do with any actual moral agency.
Norma McCorvey should be seen as an object lesson for the pro choice movement - a call to us to search our souls and take an-other, humbler look at how we go about what we are doing. For Norma McCorvey is in fact an American Every woman: She is the lost middle of the abortion debate.
3. Abortion advocates are even beginning to notice the disingenuousness of their rhetoric, and to concede what Christians have argued all along, the obvious fact that abortion is killing, and human beings are the victims. George McKenna answered the following questions in an article appearing in the September issue of the ultra-liberal magazine, Atlantic Monthly:
"The Clinton Administration, the first administration clearly committed to abortion, seems to be trying hard to promote it without mentioning it.
Why, in a decade when public discourse about sex has become determinedly forthright, is "abortion" so hard to say? No one hesitates to say "abortion" in other contexts - in referring, for example, to aborting a plane's takeoff. Why not say "abortion of a fetus"? Why substitute a spongy expression like "termination of pregnancy"? And why do abortion clinics get called "reproductive health clinics" when their manifest purpose is to stop reproduction? Why all this strange language? What is going on here?. . . What is it about abortion that is so troubling? The obvious answer is that abortion is troubling because it is a killing process ... [Abortion clinics') primary purpose is to kill human fetuses.
4. In November and December, powerful medical testimony by nursing, OB/GYN, and anesthesiology experts and drawings depicting partial birth abortion (PBA), also known as "dilation and extraction" (D&X), displayed in committee hearings and on the floors of the U.S. Senate and House, fueled several months' debate which concluded with both chambers passing legislation outlawing PBAs. Although the President intends to veto it, it was the first legislation either house had passed banning any method of abortion, since the Roe v. Wade decision, in January 1973, and it is one of several key pro-life issues awaiting disposition in the present balanced budget impasse, where much more is at stake than a mere seven dollars, in seven years!
5. Other legislation regulating abortion has also been passed by Congress and signed by the President, including:
An appropriations bill for the Treasury Department, Postal Service, and other agencies, prohibiting coverage for abortions under federal health insurance, except in cases of rape or incest, or to save the mother's life.
An appropriations bill banning abortions at all U.S. military facilities worldwide.
6. In the public debate, the tide is turning against abortion, as evidenced in November 1994, when pro-life candidates won election in all Congressional and Senatorial contests against pro-abortion candidates and incumbents nationwide.
7. Pro-abortion politicians are surrendering the field of battle. The freshman Congressmen's determination to uncompromisingly represent their constituents' pro-life, anti-abortion views, to date, has contributed to decisions by twelve pro-abortion U.S. senators not to seek reelection in 1996, including Democrats Shroeder (Colorado), Bill Bradley (New Jersey), Paul Simon (Illinois), and Re-publican Alan Simpson (Wyoming).
8. Victories won nationally reflect even more victories won at the state level, as legislative and executive measures favoring righteousness succeeded in at least 21 states, during the past year. Here are a few of them:
Beating Congress to the punch, the Ohio House voted last spring to outlaw partial birth abortions.
Legislation requiring informed consent for abortion was enacted in Indiana, Louisiana, and Montana. An informed consent bill passed both houses of the Missouri legislature, but was vetoed by the governor. The Rhode Island Senate also passed such a bill, and similar legislation cleared committees of the Alabama Senate and the North Carolina House.
Illinois, Montana, and Tennessee enacted new laws, and Louisiana amended its statue, to mandate parental notice or consent before an abortion can be performed on a minor. Similar bills have passed both houses of the Iowa legislature, as well as the Delaware, North Carolina, and Washington Houses of Representatives, and the Oregon Senate. Parental notice or consent legislation has also cleared senate committee hurdles in Alaska and Texas.
Montana enacted legislation outlawing abortion by anyone other than licensed medical doctors. All but a handful of states now have such laws, notwithstanding abortion industry exertions to promote authorization for abortion procedures by others besides physicians.
A bill passed by the Washington House requires doctors to inform women seeking abortion of numerous studies suggesting that women who undergo elective abortion prior to their first live birth face an increased risk of breast cancer. It further orders the state health department to compile and summarize research on this possible connection. Pennsylvania has allocated funds to analyze current studies of the link, as well.
Although, Roe v. Wade prevents states from criminalizing abortion, most states consider it a felony homicide to kill an unborn child by any other means, including death resulting from motor vehicle accidents. South Dakota came on line with new legislation last year, and Georgia and Kansas increased their penalties. Such laws clearly imply that if Roe ever falls, the days of legalized abortion in America are numbered.
Obviously, the cause of righteousness has not gained all we could hope for, but these are steps in the right direction for which we ought to give thanks. Let us diligently continue to watch, pray, and work while it is still day.
Guardian of Truth XL: 8 p. 8-9