Hayley is a Ghost

Conversations with a London pro-lifer

Posted on: February 26, 2011

40 Days For Life - London

Their aim is an end to abortion throughout the UK and they plan to make this happen through peaceful prayer. Their name is ’40Days For Life- London’ and their next campaign is kicking off in a weeks time in London.

According to their website:

“From March 9th 2011 – April 17th 2011 our community will be one of many cities joining together for the largest and longest coordinated pro-life mobilization in history.”

40 Days for Life is a focused pro-life effort that consists of 40 days of prayer and fasting, 40 days of peaceful vigil, 40 days of community outreach. We are praying that, with God’s help, this groundbreaking effort will mark the beginning of the end of abortion in our city — and throughout the UK.

At first it seems like a harmless protest, they’re entitled to speak out about their beliefs, right? Besides, they’re not being viscious and abusive as the pro-life movement in the US is known to often be. However, as March 9th draws closer I have a cold and terrible concern that has been growing in the back of my mind. The very fact that these people are going to be on the streets with their peaceful protest brings me more fear than the idea of the violent protesters being out there in their place.

It’s all because of a conversation I had with the leader of the London branch of ’40 Days for Life’ last year. I got in touch with him after the Daily Mail ran an article about them entitled: The new abortion war; Doctors murdered… clinics firebombed. Could Britain follow in the steps of the militant U.S ‘pro-lifers’?

At the time I hadn’t known they were in the UK and it surprised me that pro-lifers were so active in this country. The title of the article had shocked me as I knew the extent of the violent ‘pro-life’ protests in the US and I couldn’t imagine such a thing coming to the UK.

The Daily Mail article reported that the British organiser of ’40 days for life’ (which is widespread in the US already) is Robert Colquhoun who is 28 and trained for the priesthood but now works in finance in the City. The Daily Mail said:

Robert paid about £280 for a ‘starter protest kit’ that he bought on the internet from 40 Days’ head office in America.

‘It’s a brilliant idea,’ he says. ‘They give you the best training I’ve ever had. It’s all online and really clever. And then they send the basic resources — the big banner and the signs — and you adapt them to the local campaign. It’s the best thing I’ve ever done in my life. We need to get the message across here.’

In return, he’s provided regular updates to the 40 Days HQ in Texas. ‘They’re very interested in how it all works in the UK and how the ­campaign’s been going in London, so we’ve been feeding all our findings back to them and they seem really pleased. The group’s grown exponentially in America, so we’re hoping it will take off here.

‘We’re hoping for at least 1,500 local volunteers by Lent. This is just the beginning — we have so much to learn from America.’

The last part of that quote scared me very much indeed as he didn’t elaborate on what he meant by ‘so much to learn from America’. Would that be how to firebomb clinics and kill people? How best to use placards with dead babies on them to shock people arriving at abortion clinics? How much did the London branch of 40 days want to learn from pro-lifers in America?

Being the proud skeptically minded person that I am, there was no way I could simply take the Daily Mail’s word as fact so I did what anyone should do, and I contacted Robert directly who very kindly answered most of the questions I had about their campaign, their aims and their beliefs.

As I have said above, I was aware of the ‘pro-life’ movement and protests in the US, but it was always something I only knew a bit about as it had never been something I had to deal with on a local level. London isn’t local for me, but it’s a bit closer than America (if that makes sense).

My knowledge of the way in which pro-lifers justify their actions wasn’t top notch and so for me, this was a great way to really understand the people behind the scary Daily Mail headline that suggested that Pro-lifer activists could already be in the UK.

What follows is my conversation with the leader of the London branch of ’40 days for life’:

Hayley: Thank you for sparing me some of your time, I appreciate you are busy with your campaign. In the Daily Mail article there is a link between breast cancer and abortion mentioned that suggests abortion can increase the risk of cancer. I was wondering where the link with breast cancer comes into play as I saw that many cancer charities deny such a link.#

I was also wondering how exactly abortion was a sin? I saw in the article “We don’t love sin, we love the sinner” but I don’t understand how abortion is a seven sin. Also, do you not feel that making abortion illegal or less accessible, girls and women will still abort in “back street abortion clinics” which can seriously harm them?

Robert: Abortion is a sin because it is the deliberate ending of the life of an unborn child. This is contrary to the will of God. Since abortion has been legalised, it has grown exponentially and has been encouraged throughout.

We encourage people of faith and conscience to pray and fast for an end to abortion. So far six women have changed their minds about having an abortion as a result of our initiative and we have helped to build a growing consciousness about the humanity of the unborn child.

Hayley: You say “Abortion is a sin because it is the deliberate ending of the life of an unborn child. This is contrary to the will of God” but does God not order people in the bible to kill children – and does he not, himself, kill children?

Whoever strikes his father or mother shall be put to death. (Exodus 21:15 NAB)

From there Elisha went up to Bethel.  While he was on his way, some small boys came out of the city and jeered at him.  “Go up baldhead,” they shouted, “go up baldhead!”  The prophet turned and saw them, and he cursed them in the name of the Lord.  Then two shebears came out of the woods and tore forty two of the children to pieces. (2 Kings 2:23-24 NAB)*

Please tell me why your God feels it is okay to murder children, but it is not okay to “murder” unborn children?

Robert: The Old Testament passages you have used are out of context from their true meaning.** The most important passage is from the Old Testament 10 commandments: You shall not kill. Abortion in fact violates all the ten commandments:

If you’ve had an abortion yourself- there is wonderful hope and healing available from this ministry that I highly recommend as truly excellent. <a link was provided via email>

Hayley: You say that six women changed their minds about having an abortion. Were they Christian? If not, do your campaigners have any right to tell other people how to live their lives? Isn’t it a bit arrogant of anyone to presume they can dictate wrong and right to another human?

Robert: Those who changed their minds were from a variety of different backgrounds. Many of them did not know that there were people who were willing to help them with many practical needs which were the primary reasons that they were having abortions. They all felt as if they had no choice but have an abortion.  We do not impose, merely propose an offer of unconditional help to those in need.

In terms of dictating right or wrong to other humans: that is what the law does by giving a list of laws by which society is governed. No laws would equal anarchy. In the case where the law in an injustice, a further difficulty arises.

Hayley: I was worried because I read in the Daily Mail article that somebody involved with 40 days in London feels that the methods used in America to campaign and target people attending abortion clinics need to be used in England too. What was meant by that? Some of the campaigning in the US is dangerous and violent and has led to murder.

Robert: The Daily Mail article was extremely misleading because only peaceful and prayerful means are used in our campaigns.

Hayley: What do your protest entail? For example, do you use graphic images on placards like in the US?

Robert: we have a prayer vigil for 12 hours a day: we have signs saying ‘pray to end abortion’ but no pictures of aborted babies as we don’t think that it is effective of pastorally effective to do that in that context.***

Hayley: Do the protesters really have the right to condemn women to a lifetime of raising a child they didn’t want? I know they may grow to love the child and that is great! However, you don’t know what led them to that clinic, what their backgrounds are, why they chose to abort the baby due to their backgrounds, positions, lifestyles. How can you be sure that you aren’t condeming a child to a terrible life?

Do you follow up with those women to ensure they are okay? Or do you just send them on their way?

Robert: We have a prayer vigil, not a protest. We don’t condemn or judge anyone, merely pray and offer help to those in need.

We offer counselling and help so they are not just sent on their way, so many have been helped thanks to our presence. To learn more about what abortion really is, visit: <link provided to me is available on request due to the graphic nature>

Hayley: But will the banning of abortion not result in women just seeking abortions elsewhere? We’ve seen that happen in the past. Backstreet abortions are dangerous and potentially fatal. Is that okay with you? That you could be condemming women to dance with death in order to live their life how they wish to live it?

Robert: We are not mainly interested in changing the law, but praying for an end to abortion.

Hayley: Do you not think that by protesting abortion you are actually infringing the human rights of the very women being labelled as ‘murderers’? I know people believe they are protecting the human rights of the unborn child and there is a lot of debate regarding the stage at which abortion becomes ‘murder’ but when is it ever okay to disregard one persons human rights for anothers? I don’t think it ever is. #

This is where the conversation ends.

The claim that six women had their minds changed by the campaigners is what worries me the most about the peaceful protests that are kicking off on March 8th. The ’40 days for life’ campaigners have no right to tell a woman what to do with her body, and they have no right to try and change a womans mind. I would also question whether they have the training or qualifications to deal with people who may be in a fragile state of mind.

I accept that the claim made by Robert is that the women in question were made aware of the fact that there were alternatives and that there was support they could get.

However, this happens anyway when you speak to your doctor about being referred for an abortion and when you visit a private abortion clinic.

A doctor is more likely to be able to give somebody access to suitable resources and the correct advice for their situation than a religious stranger on the street.

Peaceful protests or not, pushing your own beliefs onto others at a very difficult time in their lives in fundamentally wrong. Not only that though, threatening them with damnation from your god is cruel.

Beware London, 40 days for life are coming.

# No answer provided for the questions about the link to breast cancer as spoken about by ’40 days’ campaign members and no answer provided regarding the potential for human rights infringement.
*I’m sure some will say that I have quote minded or cherry picked these bible quotes, however, there are many instances of children being murdered by the will of god. I just chose two I was aware of.
** I’m not sure how one can take the story of children being killed at the will of god out of context, but hey ho…
***but providing such graphic pictures and videos is alright in an email to a woman you don’t know, apparently?
Advertisements

30 Responses to "Conversations with a London pro-lifer"

I sincerely hope this group isn’t a precursor for a movement such as we have here in the US. Rachel Maddow had an interview on her show of 2/23 with a woman who used to be an abortion provider in Kansas, until the murder of Dr. Tiller. You might find it interesting. You can download the whole ep on Itunes or watch the clip here http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/26315908/ns/msnbc_tv-rachel_maddow_show/

Hi, 40 Days for Life, in fact pro-lifers in the UK do not support any violence at all. None of us supports violence against abortionists or other abortion staff. It seems journalists do not make muc himagination: there angle is usually to posit that pro-life groups in the UK are on the verge of bombing clinics.

I watched the news piece from the Rachel Maddow show. Utterly bias in favour of abortion. Is this show considered serious news reporting in the US? What a pity. Also, the section that reports on the proposed legislation is done via a slection of paper headlines which makes the whole report less credible. Furthermore, the lady at teh end giving some analyis – Rachel Dryden – is a small time journalist, not a serious legal expert.
Yours,

I accept that you, and your group, don’t support violence but the statement “pro-lifers in the UK do not support any violence at all” is a big claim, I don’t believe that you speak for everyone in the UK who identifies as a pro-lifer.

Dan B,
Abortion is a legal procedure in the United States. Whether or not you agree with it as a practice, reporting on the threats sustained by violent extremists towards abortion providers is not pro-abortion, it is anti-terrorism.

besides, I don’t know anyone personally who identifies as ‘pro-abortion’, usually ‘pro-choice’.

@ Hayley, true, I am not a spokesperson for every peron who is pro-life, although I’ve never met a person who considered violence ok. To me, pro-choice is used as it sounds more acceptable. Would a person who is pro-choice not support that actualisation of that choice i.e. to go and have an abortion? Of course they would, so pro-abortion fits.

@ Amber, a few people who have used violence do not represent the majority of pro-lifers. The report was poor High School quality. Slavery was legal, segregation of black people was legal, Hitler’s rise to power was done throught the vote and the parliament. The ‘it is leagal’ argument is a non-starter. All best.

I’m not pro-abortion, I’m simply not arrogant enough to think I have the right to tell other people to live by the standards I choose to live to.

Sorry, Dan. When abortion providers in the US have to wear bullet-proof vests to work, are constantly threatened, harassed, stalked and in several cases bombed and/or murdered, I don’t care if that represents a “majority of pro-lifers.” It represents a significant enough majority here the US to be the standard. I’m glad your organization doesn’t promote violence but it doesn’t change the fact that violence or the threat of violence is the tool used by your colleagues here in the US to scare people from providing reproductive health services of all kinds, not just abortion.

Our Supreme Court has settled this matter, a woman’s right to privacy supersedes your right to tell her what to do with her body. I’m sorry if you don’t think you have to follow the law because you don’t like it, but I’m afraid we all do until the law is changed and in this case it won’t be.

Many people have argued that better sex education in schools and better access to contraception would reduce the number of unwanted pregnancies, and as a result there would be fewer people considering abortion. I wonder if they’d agree to 40 days of prayer for more contraceptives?

Right, but often abortions take place due to health complications as well.

Oh dear. Are you completed unaware of the statements by the makers of hormonal contraceptives and the male condom? The failure rate of the pill is at least 8%, and the male condom 15%.

Or how about the often repeated words of Bpas CEO ANn Furedi, who tells us that abortion is the back-up to contraception.

Or how about research done by Marie Stopes International and Guttmacher Institue? Well, the number of couples using contraeption at the time of pregnancy ranges between something like 48%-62%.

More contraception means more abortions. It’s really simple and uncontroversial.

There is no health complication that is solved by abortion. Furthermore, the women who do have a medical complication will usually have it before the pregnancy, rather than as a result of the pregnancy. In these cases, women are more determined to give bith, and do it naturally. Never watched ‘One born every minute’ on channel 4? I do understand your concern, but abortion as a necessity for health complication is a real myth.

Wow, you’re seriously arguing that pregnancy can never cause problems that threaten the mother? What about ectoptic pregnancy (think that’s how it’s spelt), where the foetus implants in the fallopian tubes? You clearly are not actually presenting facts, but just thingsyou think sound good at the time, which is no way to have adebate on a serious issue such as this.

Oh, not you, Hayley. I was referring to Dan’s comment, “There is no health complication that is solved by abortion.” The threading of the comments meant I needed to reply to the same comment he did.

Oh, not you, Hayley. I was referring to Dan’s comment, “There is no health complication that is solved by abortion.” There wasn’t a direct “reply” button, so I put it in the same thread.

His last paragraph argues abortions are never medically necessary, and thus we should always encourage pregnant women to carry to term. Ectopic pregnancies make up about 1% of pregnancy, and are a life-threatening condition. There are others, of course, but I that’s one of the most common.

Sorry for the confusion.

“The very fact that these people are going to be on the streets with their peaceful protest brings me more fear than the idea of the violent protesters being out there in their place.” This sounds pretty intolerant. Look at the people power in North Africa and the Middle East, or the countless public protests that we have in London throughout the year. Should people just keep their causes hidden away? Clearly not, and 40 Days for Life wouldn’t adopt such an intolerant attiutde. People in London are used to large group protests etc, it’s nothing out of the ordinary for us.

It’s commendable that you took the time to contact Robert – most people stop at reading a poorly wirtten article in the press. So well done and thanks.

In reference to the abortion-breast cancer link, I suggest you look at the evidence at the Coalition on abortion-breast cancer, and the Breast Cancer prevention Institute. The peer-reviewed studies and meta-analysis done by Professor Joe Brind and Dr. Angela Lanfranchi are amongst the most well know. There is also the statistical evidence by Dr. Patrick caroll. There are many professional organisations that recognise a link. There are some studies that remain inconclusive, and some that say there is not link. We, and the experts, have looked at these – there are serious design flaws that make the conclusions lack credibility.

“The claim that six women had their minds changed by the campaigners is what worries me the most about the peaceful protests that are kicking off on March 8th. The ’40 days for life’ campaigners have no right to tell a woman what to do with her body, and they have no right to try and change a womans mind. I would also question whether they have the training or qualifications to deal with people who may be in a fragile state of mind.”

Please don’t be worried for women who reject abortion. A woman’s body and the body of her child are different things. The ‘it’s my body’ isn’t even used anymore by people in favour of abortion. You might see it in the USA sometimes, but I guess you wouldn’t want anythig to do with pro-abortion people from America, right!! We want an total end to abortion and wed like it if every woman rejected abortion, like the early feminists did too.

As for changing a woman’s mind, every single day we as individuals have our minds changed, and we change others minds. It’s an ordinary and wonderful part of life. I’ve spoken to young women considering abortion – they don’t want it, but a parent or partner is pushing them usually. The pregnant mothers just want an excuse to not go through with it, and we can offer them whatever help they need at that time. We work closely with a pregnancy centre – one of the few that also offers every help to illegal asylum seekers and immigrants. Did you know that? We do have trained and experienced counsellors most of the time, including doctors. They are very experienced too. Sometimes we have trained volunteers who just offer a leaflet and a chat.

In terms fo human rights I urge you to read the internationally agreed human rights agreements of the United Nations: Universal Declaration of human rights, convention on Genocide, Declaration and Convention on the rights of the child etc, and the European Convention of Human Rights. Abortion has never been considered a human right, or healthcare. Countries in the West on began leagalising abortion in the 1960s onwards. Abortion is an a crime agaisnt the child in the womb. It als oleaves woman with a lifetime of regret and psychological damage. We are completely within the law in standing outside an abortion clinic – we clear it with the police and the abortion clinic too.

In regard to the Biblical quotes, first I’d say we are Christians, not Old Testament Jews. Also, the passage does not say that God killed the chidlren, but a bear. Surely a rational person, especially someone who does not believe in God in teh first palce, would look for the plain and rational explanation, right?

In terms of putting to death whoever strikes mother or father, we’d first have to look at teh question of translation. It may be the case that ‘strike’ in teh orginal Hebrew and early translations read ‘kill’ or ‘murder’. In this sense the punishment of death might be seen as a just act of punishment by the community authority. When it says ‘put to death’ we have to be cautious about whether it means a literal death, or a death as in explusion or excommunication from the community. As such, explusion was like a death – ‘that person is dead to us’. Remember that exile could be seen as a punishment worse than death. I would aslo say that Jesus said no to eye for eye, no to revenge, no to murder.

Phew, that was a long one. I think I covered your points. Maybe I’m missed a few too. Anyway, I hope this helps. Feel free to email me if you have more to ask. Usually emails between people are private, so I hope you told Robert before hand that you planned to publish the emails. On the other hand, we have nothing to hide and we’re honest. The picture you’ve used is vulgar, you do a diservice to yourself and makes the post lack seriousness.

Yours Sincerely, Daniel (email on 40days website).

“The very fact that these people are going to be on the streets with their peaceful protest brings me more fear than the idea of the violent protesters being out there in their place.” This sounds pretty intolerant. Look at the people power in North Africa and the Middle East, or the countless public protests that we have in London throughout the year. Should people just keep their causes hidden away? Clearly not, and 40 Days for Life wouldn’t adopt such an intolerant attiutde. People in London are used to large group protests etc, it’s nothing out of the ordinary for us.

It’s not intolerant at all. People have the right to protest, it’s a a civil liberty than should be protected and valued – doesn’t mean I have to like what you’re protesting though

It’s commendable that you took the time to contact Robert – most people stop at reading a poorly wirtten article in the press. So well done and thanks.

You’re welcome. I like to know the facts about something and the Daily Mail aren’t a paper I trust at the best of times.

In reference to the abortion-breast cancer link, I suggest you look at the evidence at the Coalition on abortion-breast cancer, and the Breast Cancer prevention Institute. The peer-reviewed studies and meta-analysis done by Professor Joe Brind and Dr. Angela Lanfranchi are amongst the most well know. There is also the statistical evidence by Dr. Patrick caroll.
There are many professional organisations that recognise a link. There are some studies that remain inconclusive, and some that say there is not link. We, and the experts, have looked at these – there are serious design flaws that make the conclusions lack credibility.

Which suggests to me that you are cherry picking those studies as they fit with your belief systems.

“The claim that six women had their minds changed by the campaigners is what worries me the most about the peaceful protests that are kicking off on March 8th. The ’40 days for life’ campaigners have no right to tell a woman what to do with her body, and they have no right to try and change a womans mind. I would also question whether they have the training or qualifications to deal with people who may be in a fragile state of mind.”
Please don’t be worried for women who reject abortion. A woman’s body and the body of her child are different things. The ‘it’s my body’ isn’t even used anymore by people in favour of abortion. You might see it in the USA sometimes, but I guess you wouldn’t want anythig to do with pro-abortion people from America, right!!

Well, I’m not the one linking myself with the activists in the US who harass women entering abortion clinics, you are, so you tell me…

We want an total end to abortion and wed like it if every woman rejected abortion, like the early feminists did too.

I want world peace, but it doesn’t mean I’m going to get it. If you were a woman and you got pregnant and didn’t want an abortion as you didn’t agree with it that would be your right. It’s not your right to tell others what to think or do. Luckily for you though you have the right to protest and speak freely, something which I defend strongly.

As for changing a woman’s mind, every single day we as individuals have our minds changed, and we change others minds. It’s an ordinary and wonderful part of life. I’ve spoken to young women considering abortion – they don’t want it, but a parent or partner is pushing them usually. The pregnant mothers just want an excuse to not go through with it, and we can offer them whatever help they need at that time.

I agree that if someone is being forced into an abortion by a partner or similar then it’s wrong, nobody should force anybody to do something with their body that they don’t want to do, right?

We work closely with a pregnancy centre – one of the few that also offers every help to illegal asylum seekers and immigrants. Did you know that? We do have trained and experienced counsellors most of the time, including doctors. They are very experienced too. Sometimes we have trained volunteers who just offer a leaflet and a chat.

I didn’t know that, this wasn’t highlighted in the exchange with Robert. I’m glad that you work with people who are qualified to give advice, as long as they’re not led by a religious agenda, but instead, a professional and ethical conduct.

In terms of human rights I urge you to read the internationally agreed human rights agreements of the United Nations: Universal Declaration of human rights, convention on Genocide, Declaration and Convention on the rights of the child etc, and the European Convention of Human Rights.
Abortion has never been considered a human right, or healthcare. Countries in the West on began leagalising abortion in the 1960s onwards.

I wasn’t claiming it was a human right. Please also don’t assume I’m not knowledgable about human rights.

As humans we have the right of respect for privacy – It determines that every human being has a right to respect for private and family life, home and correspondence. You don’t allow those women entering the clinics you protest the right to privacy.

Not to mention freedom of religion, that works for both the religious and the non-religious.

Abortion is an a crime against the child in the womb.

In your opinion.

It als oleaves woman with a lifetime of regret and psychological damage.

In some cases. Not all cases, and this doesn’t warrant a stop of all abortion. Not all abortion is conducted simply because the baby is unwanted. Sometimes it’s for health reasons.

We are completely within the law in standing outside an abortion clinic – we clear it with the police and the abortion clinic too.

Didn’t say you weren’t.

The picture you’ve used is vulgar, you do a diservice to yourself and makes the post lack seriousness.

You have the guts to tell me a picture I use is vulgar after the founder of your group emailed me with a link to videos showing abortions? Yeah, pull the other one.

A few thoughts.

Cherry picking from the Bible and from the bad things other organisations have done in the name of pro-life is not the same as understanding the nature of this particular group and their philosophy.

Suggesting that a Christian movement only has the right to preach to other Christians is as ridiculous as suggesting that skeptics can only enter discussions with other skeptics.

Abortion IS the termination of a potential life. It’s an emotive subject. If you think it’s a right that should be provided when someone needs it, then it’s a tough thing to justify morally (though my own view is in favour of abortion under the circumstances where that’s the only way out of a cul-de-sac in life). If you believe that life is holy and sacred, then you can’t allow for abortion to be in your philosophy. Of course you can’t.

So where’s the debate?

It’s probably in the methods of a group who claim to be using intercessory prayer to solve the problem, primarily. They also claim to be talking to people and trying to sway them. If this were done in a bullying way it would be a problem. If it were to offer a desperate person an alternative choice that they didn’t think they had, which allowed them to have a child (whether they raised it or not) then perhaps it’s not an offence?

We’re not 100% clear on how this group operates, yet the argument has not been about their method of operation, which is, I think, the real issue.

Cancer/abortion link = Red Herring.

As we all know, prayer has never been proven to work, so if that’s all they’re doing, it’s not really going to achieve much.

Moral of the story – complex issues remain complex. 🙂

Suggesting that a Christian movement only has the right to preach to other Christians is as ridiculous as suggesting that skeptics can only enter discussions with other skeptics.

Yeah, I didn’t suggest that for one minute because I’m not a fucking moron. I only mentioned not forcing your beliefs onto other people. Big difference.

Hi Hayley,

Never suggested you’re a moron. I’m also playing devil’s advocate here.

There seems to be a parallel between the activities of the 1023 campaign, standing in the street in front of Boots, swallowing loads of Homeopathic pills and telling believers in Homeopathy to change their beliefs, and a bunch of believers in pro-life, standing outside an abortion clinic, en masse, and campaigning not to have abortion.

And… as I’m not a moron, I’ll identify the differences.

1. 1023 is not based on belief so much as evidence/fact. Though any stand-point could be considered a belief, rather than a deduction.
2. Downing sugar pills is less offensive than showing pictures of foetuses.
3. Alt-med is less emotive than abortion.

All I’m saying, though, is that any group with an opinion is bound to campaign and push its views forward. Why do you think that this group is forcing its beliefs any more than your own activism promotes its own views?

Again, playing devil’s advocate. Not criticising anyone personally here.

BTW – the quote I was referring to, was:

Hayley: You say that six women changed their minds about having an abortion. Were they Christian? If not, do your campaigners have any right to tell other people how to live their lives? Isn’t it a bit arrogant of anyone to presume they can dictate wrong and right to another human?

Which implies to me that you were questioning whether Christian campaigners could preach to non-Christians.

If it helps (it probably won’t), I don’t like abortion much, but consider it a moral grey area where I have no right to force my objection on others. There are many ways pregnancy could harm the mother, possibly to the extent of ruining al her chances in life, psychologically destroying her (after rape, for instance), or even threatening her life. I have no right to insist that woman jumps through my requirements, she has to decide herself if it’s the right, ethical decision after weighing up all factors. I think it’s particularly arrogant for males, like myself, yes, to think we can judge a situation we’re completely safe from.

Adam C,
I think you’ve hit the nail on the head there. Recently in the news was a bustup of an illegal “baby-breeding” ring in Thailand, where women were impregnated, often against their will, and forced to have the babies to be sold to people who wanted them. This is such an appalling nightmare scenario that it was actually used in a particularly creepy story line in the new Battlestar Galactica series. It hits women where we live, the thought of being forced to breed like some kind of farm animal. To me that is the moral issue. No man could ever possibly understand what it would be like to be forced to grow another human inside themselves against their will and as such I don’t think they should get a vote.

Besides that consideration are the societal costs of forcing women to have babies that they cannot or will not care for. If you read the book “Freakonomics” the author explains that in the early nineties a great explosion in youth crime had been predicted. When this explosion didn’t happen and in fact crime rates dropped over 50%, the experts were falling all over themselves trying to explain it. There was no correlation between this drop and the economy, education rates, poverty or anything else they looked at. The answer was very clear but nobody wanted to admit it until everything else could be ruled out. The reason for the precipitous drop in crime in the US was the passage of Roe V. Wade in 1973.

It is all very well and good to be against abortion. As you said you aren’t a great fan of abortion and I’ve never met anyone who was. As Hayley said, nobody is pro-abortion and though Dan was quick to jump in that it “sounded nicer” thats a bunch of bullshit. It has nothing to do with sounding nicer. There isn’t anyone out there screaming abortion yeah woo hoo! What we are FOR is a woman’s right to decide what happens in her body. The term pro-choice is not newspeak, it is what we are actually fighting for.

The bottom line is while I respect the rights of the 40 Days for Life to peacefully protest what they see as a crime against their god and for them not to want women to have abortions, the implications of making abortion illegal are far greater than the one woman/one child focus that they have. Here in the United States especially we have a saying “love the fetus, hate the child” – those same people who are stridently and often violently opposed to abortion are the same people who don’t want to pay for the social safety net that women with unwanted pregancies need to make it. This is a much more complex issue than the pro-lifers want to admit. So yeah, if they want to protest abortion on religious grounds I say let them (as long as they aren’t harassing or threatening anyone). However if the rest of us want to bring up the damage that could be done to society if they get their way, that’s our right as well.

Thanks for that, interesting and informative piece!

@ Adam C

Quote:
“I think it’s particularly arrogant for males, like myself, yes, to think we can judge a situation we’re completely safe from.”

Agreed!! I do at times wonder what right men have over such issues involving the human female. We can NEVER understand the feeling of impregnation, birth or abortion.

@Dan B

Quote:
“More contraception means more abortions. ” LMFAO You should be doing stand up comedy with Pope Been-a-dick.

I just love men telling me what I should do with my body. Just like I love sceptics who tell me what I should believe.

Well a sceptic shouldn’t tell you what to believe. I’m certainly not. That’s sort of what being ‘pro-choice’ is about. I want people to have a choice, I’m not telling them what to do or what to think.

Leave a Comment

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Hayley is a ghost

Hayley Stevens is an advocate for science-based research into seemingly paranormal experiences and occurrences. With a background in the pseudo-scientific research into ghosts, Hayley offers a unique insight into the strange world of ghost hunting through her experience.

She describes herself as 'a ghost hunter who doesn't hunt for ghosts' and this is her personal blog where she writes about ghosts, people, and other interesting things. Read more here.

Recommended Posts




Question.Explore.Discover. Back for an encore. Only £89


Those looking for the 'QED Rebel Dinner' click here.

Enter your email address to follow this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 41 other followers

%d bloggers like this: