The king of Egypt said to the Hebrew midwives, whose names were Shiphrah and Puah, “When you are helping the Hebrew women during childbirth on the delivery stool, if you see that the baby is a boy, kill him; but if it is a girl, let her live.” The midwives, however, feared God and did not do what the king of Egypt had told them to do; they let the boys live. – Exodus 1:15-17
The Susan B. Anthony List has a new commercial out taking on the president’s history of supporting 4th-trimester abortion:
(If link doesn’t work, video can be found here)
It’s not a new issue. We’ve known for quite some time that Barack Obama opposed protection for those born alive after a failed abortion. I doubt it will have any political impact – those callous enough to vote for such a man the first time around are unlikely moderated their views on human life, and those who are driven to vote by such an advertisement would have been driven to vote without it (and would never vote for Obama).
The point I want to take away from the video here is the nurse who rescued this young lady. We’re not given the nurse’s name or the rest of the story. All we know is that the discarded female infant (side note: gender-selective abortion is on the rise … and it’s the females who are getting aborted more frequently) was heard by a passing nurse who took pity on her and saved her life. Amen. May God bless that nurse (though, I’m clearly about 20 years too late with that prayer).
I’ve argued often that I believe life begins at conception, and that the definition of when life begins is critical to this issue – perhaps it is the only issue. When life does begin is when we have a new “person” who is created equal in the eyes of God and is every bit entitled to the same defense of their life.
I argue for conception because it is the most clearly defined “step function” in our composition. At that point we become completely defined in “blue print” terms. We have a genetic code, we have DNA, we are inherently everything we will become (from a biological standpoint anyway). And so this is where I define life, the point where you became you.
This isn’t necessarily a post about the definition of life. I just wanted to make my position plain before pointing to another consideration that abortion defenders often use: “viability”. That is, you are “alive” when you are “viable”. Now, viable is a squishy term. It implies some level of not-so-clearly defined support. You are “viable” when you require this much support to live but no more. But how much is “this much”?
The 2 day old zygote requires support from the mother to live, as does the 5 minute old … post-birth that is … baby. The young lady in this video clearly doesn’t survive if she is not rescued by the nurse. She was viable, I think, but needed some level of support to live. So what is the level?
Is it “able to survive outside of the mother”? But this is an ever-changing level. Advances in medical technology have pushed that barrier back to as early as 25 weeks or so here in the US (not in other places though). Is this the defining point of life? And what if medical technology pushes us to the point where a non-implanted fertilized egg can be taken into laboratory conditions and maintained and “grown” into a full blown human being? Do we tell mothers “you have until we couldn’t have possibly saved the baby, to have an abortion – but no later”?
As a historical note, I will add that ancient traditions were different and not as sensitive as our own. In the Roman world a father held unlimited sway over the lives of his children. Until they were adults he could act with impunity – even killing a disobedient child (aren’t they all?).
I only point this out to say that some may argue for life-or-death issues of the child based on absolute parental authority. It’s an interesting argument to have, but not one that we really take up in our society. Most Americans stop cold at the thought of killing a child, and the pro-life argument needs only to cast light on the definition of “child” as, well, a defined human being of less than adult age … a baby … even pre-born.
Videos like these are moving, and I hope the SBA List keeps them coming. Do they change an election? I’m not sure. But perhaps they change a national conscience over time, and that does change the country and the world.