The Christian dissonance of the “pro-life” movement

I opened my previous post stating that I try to avoid political topics on this blog.   This post is going to make a liar of me as I step into it once more.   I promise (I think) this is the last for quite some time.

My last post was about the Christian dissonance in the phrase, “It’s my body.”   That is to say, for those of us who follow Christ, the Lamb of God who laid down his own life to save ours, it makes little sense for any Christian to claim “It’s MY body.”   Our bodies are gifts from God, temples of the Holy Spirit, and exist to bring glory and honor to our Creator.

The push back I received from my pro-choice friends over that post and others is this: They rightfully point out the dissonance (or hypocrisy) in most of us who are pro-life when they insist we care only about the baby in the womb but fall short in our compassion for humanity beyond that.

If we are honest, we have to admit they are right.   When I have these discussions with people I discover that I am often in the minority among pro-life people.   By this I mean I fully support and desire to see universal health care for all people.  I want to see free maternal care for mothers and mandatory maternal (and paternal!) leave granted by employers.   I want to be part of a nation that cares more about showing empathy and compassion towards the strangers and minorities among us  – refugees, immigrants, etc – than they do about it’s flag.  I want to see the death penalty done away with and real rehabilitation programs for convicted criminals and everyone suffering from addiction.    I want to see real gun reform laws passed and a concerted effort to end mass shootings, particularly in our schools where our children are at greater risk than in any other country on earth.

I guess you could say I am truly pro-life from womb to tomb.

Pro-choice people are right to point out the hypocrisy in many of us when we scream as loud to keep children from crossing our borders as we do to ensure children our born within our borders.

When we argue “I have a right to own a gun,” we sound alarmingly like pro-choice people arguing “I have a right to my own body.”

When we support policies or demonstrations which demean or take lightly the plight of black Americans (who proportionally speaking, are most susceptible to feeling they have a need to have an abortion) we demonstrate to a watching world that we are not really pro-life.

When we argue against health care for every person in our country and continuously vote for leaders who strategically position corporations and the wealthy to get ahead while removing safety nets for the most vulnerable among us, we shoot our cause in the foot and appear to a watching world as white-washed tombs.

When we discourage sex education or free birth control for all, we guarantee a rise in the number of those distressed and hopeless and feeling as though abortion is their only option.

Many of the positions taken against these life affirming policies are rooted in the same beast that gives birth to a pro-choice movement:  Fear of losing what’s rightfully mine.   In essence, it’s a lack of faith in God.   Both the woman who fears she cannot adjust her future life to that of a newborn and the person who thinks allowing in more refugees will water down their culture are committing the same sin:  They lack faith in a God who promises to provide for our needs if we will humble ourselves before him and honor him in all that we do.

I wonder what would happen if we who are pro-life would actually be pro-life in every area of our lives?   Maybe, just maybe, it would bear witness to a watching, confused and hurting world that God truly is the God of all nations, all tribes, all tongues – born and unborn – and loves them dearly.   After all, they will know us by our love.




2 thoughts on “The Christian dissonance of the “pro-life” movement”

  1. Two reasons this common little canard of the pro-abortion movement falls flat:

    1) You can’t credibly label as “compassionate” a system that doesn’t work. Universal health care has yet to be proven economically viable. Bankrupting the country wouldn’t help the poor, sick, female, young, elderly, refugee, racially oppressed, or anyone else.

    2) Even in an imperfect system where wages and medical care are unreliable, a baby has a non-zero chance of prospering in that life, as opposed to zero chance if it gets the forceps in utero. I fail to see how pro-lifers sponsoring the only “non-zero” option is somehow un-compassionate.

    That’s why pro-lifers remain unimpressed with this argument, well-written though it was. The pro-abortion movement has yet to provide satisfactory answers to any of this.

    1. Hi Brandon, thanks for your comment.

      Why do you think universal health care doesn’t work? I’m sure you are aware that the USA is ranked well behind most other countries in the world when it comes to healthcare, and most if not all of those countries offer free healthcare to all its citizens. I’ve never understood why Christians tend to think that a system motivated by greed is better than one motivated by compassion.

      And let me emphasize what I said in my post – I was careful to point out those who argue *against* healthcare for all are those who shoot our cause in the foot. This is an important distinction. We should not be insisting that every unborn child be born while at the same time be seen arguing AGAINST solutions that seek to help pregnant women feel supported through their pregnancy, birth and beyond.

      Sadly, the prolife movement far too often is seen as the sort of people denouncing universal health care as an evil while offering nothing in it’s place to meet the very real needs of the poor, or those without insurance. I don’t care so much if someone is *for* universal healthcare in the way I see it, but I do care to hear them follow up their pro-life speech with holistic and systematic ways they intend to care for the mothers choosing life for their child.

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