Mary takes on a pro-abortion “Christian” woman

Our commenter Mary likes to debate online. She found a pro-abortion woman to fight with. The pro-abortion woman explains in the post how she supports abortion in her work on “maternal health” in the developing world.

The pro-abortion woman’s first argument is that because we don’t have funerals for miscarried babies, that proves that the unborn aren’t human:

We don’t issue death certificates for miscarriages, nor traditionally perform funerals for them. My mom miscarried at six months before she got pregnant with my first brother. She didn’t consider herself a mother until she had my brother two years later. That is anecdotal of course.

Her second argument is that making abortion illegal is not practical:

This is a genuine question: how do you see ending abortions being carried out? I understand on an abstract level what I think you and others who are pro-life want–no more abortions (unless perhaps in the case of the mother’s life being in danger?). But practically, what would that look like? Making abortion illegal? Incarcerating doctors who perform and women who have abortions? Increasing access to family planning? Better sex ed? Better health care? Increased social services for poor women? All of the above? I can’t get behind something that says “Don’t have sex or live with the consequences.” It’s incredibly impractical.

And finally, she argues that people who are some pro-life people are “religious, misogynistic crazy people”, so the unborn have no right to live:

I guess that’s what frustrates me about the stunt from last week–it was meant to terrorize and disrupt, but I don’t see what it did constructively to further their agenda. Honestly, all it did was solidify for most people there that anti-choice activists are religious, misogynistic crazy people. Not very helpful.

That’s it. Those are her 3 arguments. I should add that this woman thinks that she is a Christian. But she finds chastity and personal responsibility for one’s own decision to treat sex as recreational “impractical”. Incredibly impractical.

Mary to the rescue

And now, here comes Mary:

Thanks for posting this, James-Michael. And thank you for asking the questions, “Rachel”. I love it when I’m given the opportunity to be persuasive on a topic which is close to my heart. :)

Regarding miscarriages, I actually think that there *should* be funerals for children that die before birth. I am close to someone who lost children in a miscarriage and the pain she feels is as real as that of a mother who loses a newborn. I think that our society does women a disservice when it ignores the reality of loss in the instance of miscarriage. Our society’s omission in the case of miscarriage is no grounds on which to disregard the humanity of the pre-born.

You bring up the issue of practicalities, which is a good one. A very similar argument was brought up by those in favour of retaining legal slavery in the British Empire. But thankfully, we no longer have legal slavery in the western world. Just because something will require work does not mean that we should avoid it – especially when it is something as important as this. I support abortion being made illegal, except in the instance of saving the life of the mother. I would support incarceration for doctors or nurses who subsequently performed such illegal abortions, and for those who sold abortificants. I think there needs to be better education regarding foetal development, I believe that women should be offered an ultrasound of their baby, and I would love to see the resources currently being allocated to abortion being reallocated to crisis pregnancy centres.

I think it’s also vital to recognize that the pro-life position is based on the following sound logic:
1) Taking an innocent human life is wrong (we call it murder).
2) The pre-born child is scientifically definable as a human life and is as innocent as they come.
3) Abortion takes the life of a pre-born child.
4) Abortion takes an innocent human life.
4) Abortion is therefore wrong.

As a fellow woman, I would also like to challenge you to seek better things for women. Your commitment to maternal health is commendable. However, did you know that abortion increases the incidence of miscarriage in subsequent pregnancies? Did you know that it has been implicated in a dramatically increased incidence of breast cancer? And this is in addition to the psychological damage done to women who have abortions. Abortion is bad for women. Check out Feminists for Life. This organisation believes that women deserve better. I love that.

Think also of the unborn women. Women’s health begins in the womb. Pre-born women have a right to life too. Surely their right to life is of greater importance than any other right of the mother’s, except her right to life. Did you know that abortion is used by societies that do not value women to eliminate women? Sex selective abortion and female infanticide are common in China and India. Women’s rights are not furthered by offering women the right to kill their own children.

Thank you for reading.

And then the strange pro-abortion “Christian” replied with craziness:

Mary, I will join you in lifting up miscarriage as loss. I’m not sure, though, after reading your comments that you want to have dialogue with me because your only questions to me about breast cancer, miscarriage, and gender-selection are rhetorical in tone.

I would still be interested in hearing how you would address eliminating abortions. Women with unintended pregnancies will seek abortions, illegal or legal. So, how do we go about eliminating (or more practically, reducing) unintended pregnancies in the first place?

Go here to read the whole thing. Mary tells me that she’s going to go right back there and reply to Rachel again, but she was too tired to do it on Tuesday night. If you feel like debating, like Mary seems to like to do, then you can march right over there and help her out.

Learn about the pro-life case

14 thoughts on “Mary takes on a pro-abortion “Christian” woman”

  1. Another argument I would make on the miscarriage thing is that some people don’t know they had a miscarriage and that’s the reason no funeral is held. Likewise, there are some people who are murdered and buried in the woods and no one ever figures out what happened to them, and they don’t have funerals either. Does that mean they weren’t human?

    The nazis didn’t have funerals for the Jews and homosexuals they brutally murdered. Should we concur with the nazis?


  2. The argument about miscarriages really boils down to wantedness: do we value people because they are wanted by other people?

    If not, then regardless of how people react to miscarriages, that doesn’t change their objective value.


  3. Mary, I can’t join in.
    Even though I’m pro-life and come from a pro-life family, for me just saying “Abortion is bad” even for all the right reasons is like putting a bandaid over a gaping wound that needs stitches.

    I think Rachel’s questions are valid even though abortion is not the answer.

    Actually, this is why I commented on Wintery’s Abortion, Moral Relativism, and the Banality of Evil thread.
    I appreciate your stand for life but feel that the real issue is the screwed up view most cultures have towards sex and women which puts women in the stupid position that makes them think that abortion is the answer they are looking for.

    So, I can’t join in because, whereas on the one hand I agree with you about abortion being wrong, on the other hand I see where women are being hurt and destroyed by something terrible that came way before the time to make a choice about abortion. Their sex saturated, sex-crazed cultures. And in third world countries there is added grief I won’t even get into.

    How do you change this without changing the culture?
    And how do you change the culture without changing the men, educating them, making them see how their attitudes toward women and sex is destroying women? And what men, among some of these third world countries, even care if they are destroying their women as long as they get what they want?

    Women in these countries are between a rock and a hard place. They are in a no win situation. Because you and I agree. In abortion, nobody wins. But guess what? Not aborting also hurts women (even though it shouldn’t) because of the culture they are in.

    I’m pro-life.
    But I don’t think it helps the pro-life position to be short sighted and only look at the abortion end without looking at the conception end and all that leads up to conception.

    I’m staying out of it, Mary.
    But you go, girl.
    Just remember to have some mercy on women forced into positions you and I could never imagine.


    1. I’m pro-life in an absolute sense, but am not for neglecting these other issues, and exactly the way you described. I am for abstinence before marriage, and for training men and women to respect that with things like removing sex education, encouraging fathers in the home, and abolishing co-ed schools, etc. Policies.I’m sure that Mary favors the comprehensive approach.

      The thing about Rachel is that she takes pre-marital recreational sex as a given, but calls herself a Christian. Those things are mutually exclusive. And that’s where abortion comes from. You can’t shift the moral goal posts and then say that abortion is consistent with Christianity. It isn’t because recreational pre-marital sex is not consistent with Christianity.


  4. Thanks, Mara. I agree completely with you and Wintery that the “comprehensive approach” is needed. Thank you for articulating this. However, I do still think that arguing against abortion is necessary and helpful – to help women AND their children. I think we can use a multi-pronged approach to combating evil.

    I get your point about third world countries. I live in a country which is a rather unusual mix of first and third world, so I understand where you are coming from. All sorts of unhealthy attitudes to women prevail in some settings, where men feel that they are entitled to any woman they take a fancy to. But there again, abortion plays into the hands of such men. They now no longer feel that they will have to support any children they father. They think that it becomes a woman’s responsibility to abort and “get rid of it”. Hey, it’s legal, so that means it’s fine! If a woman won’t have an abortion, what’s her problem? Women who are poor and ignorant believe the “eminent legal experts” who have decreed that abortion is ok enough to make it legal. There is an increased worry over women now using abortion as a replacement for contraception too, so repeat abortions are common. The abortion end feeds back to make the conception end worse. And I would even say that to address the conception end without addressing the abortion end can be short sighted. Saying that abortion is ok leads to more women being pressured into sex to please selfish men.

    Abortion became legal in 1996 in my country, so I have seen the difference. Instead of preventing the illegal abortions it was touted to be preventing, these have proliferated. Now, illegal abortionists put advertisements on lampposts all over the streets, advertising the services of “Dr.Cure” (an actual “name” uses) who is contactable via a cellphone number and who offers abortions in addition to “medications” that will return your cheating spouse to you or who can put curses on your work enemies. I have been handed adverts for these things at the traffic lights. The overburdened police service are indifferent about this. I’ve taken one such advert to the police station to complain and they thought I was asking them to help me get an abortion! Once I got through to them and told them that what this was advertising was illegal and harmful to women, they looked at me in disbelief and asked what I wanted them to do about it. Long story short, they took down my details, promised to call me back and never did. Abortion is now considered quite acceptable, where it wasn’t before. Even most Christians here are pretty apathetic about it. There is such an attitude of complacency on this issue and it worries me.

    I do strive to be compassionate with women who find themselves in horribly difficult positions. However, the people arguing the pro-choice side on this blog are not desperate, third world poor women. If you read their comments, abortions are even seen as a potentially good thing – for any reason. One woman (not Rachel) has related how she got an abortion, despite being married, having money, having resources, etc. She just didn’t want to be a mother. Her justification is that she prayed and felt peaceful about it. I have been blunt with her (although not nasty, I don’t think). With someone in a horrible situation I would be a lot more gentle.


  5. I would still be interested in hearing how you would address eliminating abortions. Women with unintended pregnancies will seek abortions, illegal or legal.

    You make adoptions popular. There’s no shame anymore in unwed pregnancy, so if adoptions are promoted instead of expensive fertility treatments where’s the problem?

    Here in New Zealand, abortion *is* actually illegal, but those responsible refuse to enforce the law meaning that it ends up doing to opposite to what parliament intended.


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