I believe in an incremental approach to right to life and Townhall has an article up that explains what it is.
So here is the article, by a couple of pro-lifers who I am friends with with: Marc Newman and Scott Klusendorf. (H/T McKenzie)
Here’s is some of Marc Newman’s bio from Speakers for Life:
Dr. Marc Newman is president of Speaker For Life, a training firm dedicated to equipping pro-life advocates nationwide with public speaking skills. He has spoken at nearly every major pro-life convention in the nation and is in demand as a banquet keynoter. He is the former Director of Speech and Debate at the University of California at Irvine, and is retired from teaching in the doctoral program in the School of Communication and the Arts at Regent University.
The other one is my favorite pro-lifer, Scott Klusendorf. I’ve met Scott personally, with a girlfriend, and he offered to marry us on the spot. He’s an ordained minister.
Here is some of his bio from my favorite pro-life charity, Life Training Institute:
Scott has appeared on nationally syndicated Christian programs such as Dr. James Dobson’s Focus on the Family, The Albert Mohler Radio Program, Lee Strobel’s Faith Under Fire, Hank Hanegraaff’s The Bible Answer Man, Dr. D. James Kennedy’sTruths That Transform, Richard Land’s For Faith and Family, Tim Wildmon’s American Family Radio, Kerby Anderson’s Point of View, Todd Wilken’s Issues Etc. …
Nationally, Scott has participated in numerous debates at the collegiate level. His debate opponents have included Nadine Strossen, President of the ACLU (1991-2008) – Kathryn Kolbert, an attorney that has argued for abortion rights in a United States Supreme Court case – and Kathy Kneer, President of Planned Parenthood of California.
Scott has debated or lectured to student groups at over 80 colleges and universities, including Stanford, USC, UCLA, Johns Hopkins, Loyola Marymount Law School, West Virginia Medical School, MIT, U.S. Air Force Academy, Cal-Tech, UC Berkeley, and University of North Carolina.
Each year thousands of students at Protestant and Catholic high schools are trained by Scott to make a persuasive case for life as part of their worldview training prior to college. He’s provided that same training to students at Summit Ministries and Focus on the Family Institute.
Scott is the author of The Case for Life: Equipping Christians to Engage the Culture, released in March 2009 by Crossway Books and co-author of Stand for Life released in December 2012 by Hendrickson Publishers. Scott has also published articles on pro-life apologetics in The Christian Research Journal, Clear Thinking, Focus on the Family Citizen, and The Conservative Theological Journal.
I know a secret about Scott, but I’m not sure if I’m allowed to say. Let’s just say that he’s trained other people at the highest levels of influence. If you want to make the case for the pro-life position, then you cannot do better than being trained by Scott Klusendorf. If you are looking for a great pro-life speaker to support, this is your guy.
Anyway, here is their column at Townhall:
Pro-life Christians should promote good and limit evil insofar as possible given current political realities, but the Southern Baptist Convention just passed a resolution that turns that truth on its head.
The resolution, forwarded by abolitionists, calls the SBC to be a “prophetic voice to abolish abortion” immediately and without exceptions. Incremental strategies – the resolution declares – are nothing more than “regulatory guidelines” for determining “when, where, why, and how” adults may intentionally kill innocent pre-born children. In other words, all pro-life work to date has done nothing more than promote evil. Any incremental strategy – rather than immediate abolition – is suddenly a shameful act of which leaders must confess, lament, and repent because it makes them complicit in abortion. Such a charge is scandalous, and factually untrue.
To the extent abolitionists succeed, the SBC will find itself fighting against abortion restrictions; an unwitting ally of Planned Parenthood. The latter fights them because they want unrestricted abortion; the former will fight them out of a misguided sense of ideological purity. The result will be the same: more dead children.
The first line here is important:
Every pro-life advocate wants abortion abolished. But the abolition resolution conflates the laudable goal of ending abortion with the unfeasible tactic of immediate abolition. How, exactly, is immediate abolition to happen, given current political realities? The abolitionist response is a kind of magical thinking: just decree it. But in the real world there are two ways to win a war. If you command overwhelming forces, you crush the opposition swiftly and establish victory. If, however, you are outnumbered and outgunned, then you fight a war of attrition. You wear down the opposition. That’s precisely what pro-life advocates have done with the support of the SBC. The wording of the resolution alienates and slanders them.
And finally the shocking conclusion:
By insisting on “prophetic” purity, the abolitionist position trades actual lives that could be saved right now for hypothetical ones they hope can be saved at some undisclosed future date. Consider the 2015 exchange between pro-life leader Gregg Cunningham and abolitionist leader T. Russell Hunter. Cunningham held up Dr. Michael New’s research on the effectiveness of incremental bills and asked Hunter, “Should these babies saved by incremental legislation have been allowed to die?” Hunter repeatedly attempted to dodge the question, but Cunningham pressed him. Instead of answering, Hunter dismissed the question as a “charade.” But Cunningham was not playing games. He deftly exposed a bankrupt strategy.
I was actually able to confirm this with a smart, effective abolitionist pro-lifer. I presented to him a list of state-level incremental restrictions on abortion, and actions taken by President Trump and his Republican allies in the legislature. He replied that these incremental measures were actually done in collusion with the pro-abortion crowd, in order to protect abortion rights. I pointed out that abolitionists and pro-abortionists both opposed these incremental measures. He would not back down.
So where do you stand on the two approaches?
14 thoughts on “Pro-life Christians disappointed by Southern Baptist Convention vote on abortion”
“Every pro-life advocate wants abortion abolished.”
Absolutely false. In fact, every abolitionist bill brought forward in deep red states was defeated by pro-life GOP, and every pro-life leader, including the “converted” Abby Johnson, has spoken out publicly against abolitionist bills for decades and helped GOP Legislature to kill abolitionist bills for decades. She has nice speaker’s fees too – so long as abortion remains legal of course.
Not one life has been saved by pro-life incrementalism (women just modify their behavior to account for the tiny pro-life restrictions), but a LOT of money has been made by the pro-life industry through donations, salaries, and votes for the GOP by keeping abortion legal and “gnawing around the edges” while the other side plays for keeps.
Almost zero pro-life churches have sidewalk ministries. If they REALLY wanted to abolish abortion in their city, wouldn’t they show up in force to protest abortion in their city? Hmmm. Their actions, and inactions, reveal their hearts.
Just the fact that Townhall would lie like that about pro-lifers wanting to abolish abortion is another reason I left them.
But here is the final test: if they really wanted to abolish abortion, why won’t they even TRY to abolish abortion? They aren’t outnumbered in the red states, are they? This article condemns William Wilberforce for all of those years he put forth clean abolition bills but failed. He should have only tried to save some slaves, say the incrementalists. Harriet Tubman should have only saved slaves of a certain age when she went to the plantations. Or only saved slaves from dirty plantations, but let the the clean plantations keep their slaves. In fact, she was LIVID by Lincoln compromising with the pro-slavers.
Finally, pro-life outnumbers pro-death in this country. Almost every GOP in the nation claims to be pro-life. Therefore, as a minimum, it should be EASY to pass an abolitionist bill in ANY red state if “every pro-life advocate wants abortion abolished.” Who is there to stop them?!? They are all pro-life and all want to abolish abortion, according to Townhall, right?!? That is 100% proof of the lie. I would LOVE an answer to that.
Add that lie to the other pro-life lies that “women are too stupid to know what they are doing in abortions” and “women who commit abortion are victims of their abortions.”
I’d love to see the “pro-life” answers to my questions from yesterday too. It’s tough for pro-lifers to admit that they have been played for money and votes. I know. I had to admit it myself.
LikeLiked by 1 person
You should be able to explain it to me. I’ve been against abortion since I first heard about it in 1975, arguing against it as an early teen with my pro-abort family members. I’ve been saving babies from abortion (away from the sidewalk) since 2006, and I’ve been formally on the sidewalks since 2015, saving hundreds of children from being ripped apart – with zero help from the hundred or so pro-life churches in my city. So, this isn’t something I stumbled into recently. I used to identify as a pro-lifer too, even though I have never taken an incrementalist approach on the sidewalk. I was leading a double life.
I’m sure you can easily explain to me why red states have been unable to pass a single pure abolition law in the past 48 years, since “every pro-life advocate wants abortion abolished.” Who is stopping them – other than themselves and their desire for donations votes. Just one. It can be struck down by the federal courts just like every pro-life incrementalist law in my state has. I just want to know who is stopping them from PASSING such a law. (I realize that they are WAY too cowardly to enforce it.)
LikeLiked by 1 person
Oh, my apologies for the friendly fire!
WK has me unloading on fellow abolitionists today, LOL.
The Left attempted direct assault on America and failed and so about 50 years ago they changed tactics and decided on the incremental approach, patiently winning small battles to move their agenda forward until they ultimately took over leadership of key institutions and are within a stones throw of bringing down the hammer. Had they continued clearly espousing their views and what they were really after, they never would have gone as far as they have gone.
Part of the incremental approach is winning the hearts and minds of people along the way. That is part of what the pro-life movement has been doing and must continue to do. Taking the abolitionist approach will not win hearts and minds even if their goals are honorable.
LikeLiked by 1 person
Its funny that you think their goals are honorable. That’s not what they think of the people who obtain *actual results* in the *real world*.
“Results” with no impact – women and abortionists just change their behavior to get around the tiny restrictions.
Versus actually saving lives on the front lines where so few are. Yeah, results.
Doggone that William Wilberforce and Harriet Tubman! They took the wrong approach and couldn’t win hearts and minds by being so inflexible – and godly. What was it – 20 years of defeat before Wilberforce got any traction?!? Let’s tear down their statues for being “mean” abolitionists. :-)
Actually, it is just the opposite of what you say: by passing incrementalist laws, the pro-lifers have demonstrated to our culture that it is OK to murder certain babies (under 20 weeks in my state, after a 48 hour waiting period, if the death camp is clean and has wide hallways for ambulance gurneys, if the mom has had the option of seeing an ultrasound, etc). So by passing pro-CHOICE laws for most of the babies being murdered, our culture learns from the incrementalists that most babies do not have value, but a very tiny percentage (those who are murdered after 20 weeks, etc) DO have value.
I’ve actually had abortion-minded women come up to me and say “I wish they would just outlaw abortion completely so I didn’t even have this choice. Things would be so much easier.” Think about that. That is proof positive that the law is a powerful teacher!
The other problem is that passing pro-choice laws, which is what every incrementalist law is (think about this if you don’t understand it), is bad for our souls. This is why I always say that the spiritual distance between deathscorts and pro-lifers is much smaller than the difference between pro-lifers and sidewalkers. And it’s why I have received as much pushback from pro-lifers as pro-aborts. Our actions reveal our hearts.
There is no urgency in pro-lifism. But, pro-aborts have gotten everything they wanted and are now going full-term in blue states and talking about packing the Court. They are in it to win it.
LikeLiked by 2 people
Guys, I appreciate all the comments, but if I see them going beyond verbal disagreement, then they may disappear. I mean Snapper’s last comment, for example.
Exactly! We are talking out of both sides of our mouths! And I was guilty of this too – for so long. I desperately WANTED to believe that the pro-life movement had a great strategy and the best of intentions.
But, I had so many people over the years come up to me on the sidewalk and say “I’m pro-life, but…” or “I’m a Christian, but…” and then proceed to tell me that I was doing it all wrong (no matter WHAT approach I was using) while they were never out there.
I learned to reply in one of two ways:
1. “Come show me how.” That was always met with silence.
2. “You don’t like the way I do it. I don’t like the way you don’t do it.” Then the hypocrite would slink off, knowing that he or she had been caught.
“Otherwise we are standing idly by while trying to negotiate who its okay to murder today”
And in the red states, we are negotiating with ourselves! But, I am assured that “all pro-lifers want to abolish abortion.” Uugh!
“In a more righteous time temples of Moloch were simply razed to the ground”
That’s how God is going to do it. He is not making any exceptions either.
And by attacking the edges of this abomination, we are also confusing post-abortive women about the depth of their sin. If you look at the churches and the pro-life movement, abortion is not that big of a deal (by their actions and silence in the pulpits), so I have met a ton of post-abortive women from the churches who get outraged if I say “abortion is murder.” They clearly have been taught (by the pro-life movement) that THEY are the victims, and who, after all, needs to repent for being a victim?!? So, in this way, the pro-life movement and churches are loving babies to death and women to Hell.
LikeLiked by 2 people
They are cultural Christians, NOT cross bearing Christians!!!!
Period! When you understand that, you will know why today’s
Christians will lose every battle they think they are fighting!!!
When people try to focus on the few cases like a rape or possible death as a reason to not oppose abortions. I just point out they don’t to a statically high number and I won’t endorse murder over the ninety percent of cases where they are too stupid to understand how a pregnancy works, too lazy to prevent, or uncaring.
If a marriage or business partner wants to terminate a relationship murder is not acceptable as a way to get out of the relationship to avoid responsibility, but with abortion it is allowed.
Even in a rape or possible death of the mother scenario it needs to be taken serious in the way that we judge if it is just for the police to take the life of one that is threatening others.
The way they refuse to take time to talk to a mother in counseling prior to a situation is alarming and many want to make it illegal to treat it like a very sobre, rare, occurrence