My primary calling is to share the love of Jesus Christ with those who are broken over our participation in abortion. Part of this task is bringing moral clarity to the question of whether abortion is wrong, and whether there couldn’t be some way that it is acceptable in God’s sight. That question haunted me for more than a decade after my abortion in 1978 as I tried to reconcile my choice in light of my dormant conscience and my guilty heart.
I landed in a place of saying, “Well, I’m opposed to abortion, but I can’t tell others what to do.”
I now recognize this former position as so morally bankrupt that I want to help you to refute this idea if this is your current point of view.
This is for those still stuck in a moral morass, especially those who have been listening to spiritual leaders who are defending abortion. Reverend Carlton Veazey of the Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice, the defender of abortion in this exchange from NPR’s Tell Me More Podcast which originally aired on July 18, 2011 adds to the moral confusion by employing poor logic and reasoning:
Here are just a few flaws in Reverend Veazey’s abortion defense:
• The most glaring logical fallacy is that two wrongs make a right. This is the heart of Rev. Veazey’s defense of choosing abortion: he charges that born children are being “aborted” by governmental neglect. In the aftermath of my abortion, while I wandered the spiritual wilderness of self-justification, I would sometimes repeat this idea, “If I am not willing to raise a woman’s child, I should have no say in her abortion decision.” But the suffering of poor children is not pertinent to the loss of life of aborted children. This logic only works if you follow it to its conclusion—which means you believe poor children are better off dead than living in poverty. That is the opposite of the position of our Lord Jesus Christ who poured out his life for the poor. Every life has value in his sight. Christ called his people to love the poor, not to place our hope in the state to do so. Nor to advocate for their elimination.
• Veazey’s logic is based on a false premise. There are literally thousands of ministries and hundreds of thousands of volunteers helping pregnant women and their families every day in the pregnancy help movement. If Rev. Veazey is not aware of this fact, he should call 1-800-712-HELP and join in.
• Veazey also throws in a red herring. His trump card is the “moral agency” of women. Of course pregnant women are “moral agents,” that’s a basic condition of God’s design for all humanity—not some special pass designed to waive our moral obligations to others. But it sounds good, if your primary value system is feminist ideology over truth. The merciful love of Jesus Christ has helped me see and accept that abortion–including my own–is deeply, deeply wrong, especially as an answer to poverty or the fear of poverty or other lifestyle concerns which drive abortion decisions.
As to Veazey’s idea that women “need” abortion because political forces have denied them health care, Bomberger pointed out that the same facilities aborting black babies in disproportionate numbers are there to dispense contraceptives and other services as well, clearly exposing another false premise. Bomberger was perhaps too polite to point out the political nature of Veazey’s accusation. My favorite moment of moral clarity is when Bomberger said, “I think death as a solution to any social ill is a really poor approach.”
Yet we can be grateful that through the gifts of godly sorrow over the sinfulness of abortion, and the gift of repentance and faith, God’s grace is greater still. Major kudos to Ryan Bomberger for his triumph in the NPR interview. Read Ryan’s comments on NPR’s biased editing of the interview on his blog here.
Bomberger doesn’t need me to defend him, but it’s disappointing to think we’re all paying for NPR to broadcast such shabby treatment of this man. As I understand it, he is an adoptee and the father of adopted children. For NPR and its guest to create the impression that he, his family, or his work on behalf of black families equals neglecting poor children is absurd and an insult. Bomberger’s parents went out of their way–15 children adopted–to provide for the lifelong needs of children; he is also doing the same. His grace to withstand such an onslaught of hostile and dangerous non-sense from NPR and its guest is nothing short of heroic.
Resource: For help to think through whether abortion is a sin, right or wrong, and how to recover from the spiritual impact of abortion, please see my book Cradle My Heart, Finding God’s Love After Abortion. Through 9/28 only the Kindle edition is available for $5.