I was reading an article today about abortion and the gender-based stereotypes that exist. But I quickly found that this article makes the same mistake that many do. It neglected to ask the REAL question about abortion. I don’t know anyone who believes it’s okay to kill a person (I know there are killers out there, I just don’t know any of them). So we should all at least agree that killing is wrong. So the REAL question here is this: “When does human life begin?” That’s what I believe to be our true disagreement in this country.
Many of us believe human life begins at conception, which then of course means that the baby has rights at that point in time. And many of us believe that human life begins at birth. And of course, law of the land since 1973 supports the latter. Unfortunately, as the article eludes to, the reason many of us think life begins at birth is for convenience; after all, if I get a girl pregnant, we can still fix that situation, right?
For me, I believe God’s gift of the miracle of life has begun at conception (and then continues forever). And my beliefs have been strengthened as I’ve watched several fantastic women in recent months share their pregnancies on Facebook. Those images that show “what my baby looks like at 7 months” are so powerful. There’s just no denying that there is life there, before the baby is born.
So, what then about a woman’s reproductive rights? Well, that’s simple for me. Those rights end when the new life has been created. Period. It’s really that simple. All of the possible extenuating circumstances (rape, etc) do not change that for me.
Yeah, I know I’m a guy. Yeah, I know I’ve never been pregnant, so it will never directly affect my body. I’m sorry, but that’s not my fault, this is who I am. But I’ve got children. I’ve been through pregnancies. I’ve watched the miracle happen. And I carry with me in my wallet (for 26 years now) a reminder of our 1989 pregnancy that didn’t make it. I think about that son or daughter often. For me, he/she was indeed a life, and the pain of the loss of that child is not lessened simply because it was never officially born.
If this issue were as simple as the issue of killing someone, there would be no debate. But that’s not the case. We need to focus on our definition of life.