When Will The Moral Insanity End?

No, I’m not talking about lying this time.

I’m talking about a bill passed by the Arizona House that will ban sex or race-selective abortions. And like the other Issue I’ve been speaking out on as of late, I have previously voiced my concern and, let’s just be honest, my disgust at the whole concept of banning abortions on these morally dubious grounds. Only way back then, it was Hillary Clinton speaking on behalf of pro-abortion feminists against sex-selective abortions; now it is an Arizona Republican (Steve Montenegro) making statements such as this:

“I introduced this bill to take a stand against bigotry and prejudice.”

What!? Is he serious? I’m still trying to figure out of this is some sort of joke.

You’ve got to read the rest of these comments:

During Monday’s debate over the bill, Montenegro pointed to the massive imbalance in abortion rates nationally between racial minorities and whites in the U.S. “Do you believe that a woman is equal to a man? That a black person is as valuable as a white person?,” he said. “Some people don’t believe that and those people don’t deserve your protection and my protection.”

“I introduced this bill to put an end to offensive and repugnant practices which have no place in an egalitarian, multi-cultural society.”

So, what is this? Is this a Republican cynically adopting the language of the left to pass a bill that will muck up the abortion mills? That’s what it seems like. It also seems like another scheme rooted in ambiguous moral principles for the sake of expediency that will not actually have an impact on the Culture of Death.

First there is the sheer implausibility of this bill actually having some sort of impact on the abortion rate. Call me crazy, but when the law is explained like this:

It also requires that abortionists fill out an affidavit prior to any abortion that says that they are not performing the abortion for reasons of race or sex, and that they have no knowledge that the abortion is being requested for those reasons.

It looks like nothing more than a meaningless and unenforcible statute. I almost hesitate to state the obvious: everyone will just lie.

Secondly I just want to focus on the moral stupidity of this entire argument. I think you have to be on drugs or just totally uninformed and unaware to utter a statement like this:

Rep. Chester Crandell, R-Heber, who supported the Arizona legislation, said this week: “Once we start selecting and we start deciding who we want to be born and who we don’t want to be born, this civilization in the United States as we know it today will no longer exist.”

Once we start!? Once again, we see a total inability to simply face the fact that we started this decades ago, that most Americans want it, they go along with it, and they don’t see a problem with it.

What is really, truly repugnant and disgusting here is that unborn human beings regardless of their race or their sex are treated as worthless garbage and alien intruders as soon as their mothers subjectively decide that they don’t want to bear them. What is disgusting is that some are giving up on the central message that all innocent human life is sacred and are trying to win the battle by playing the game of the radical left, whether they are trying to entrap abortionists for crimes other than abortion, or now hurling the absurd rhetoric of anti-racism and anti-sexism.

When you cut out the central, core message of the pro-life cause - that ALL abortion is immoral and ought to be illegal because it is murder, the intentional killing of an innocent human beingyou undermine the entire movement. All of your expedient gains will be wiped out tomorrow as the public rightly condemns you out of your own mouths.

“You said the problem was that the abortionists helped pimps – we’ve cleaned up that mess. You said the problem was sex and race selection. We now have laws against that. Abortions are now being done exactly in the way you want them to be done” – that is what you will eventually hear. The killing won’t stop because there will still be a huge demand for abortion, you having utterly failed to convince the majority of people that abortion in itself is actually wrong, and abortion will still be legal.

I call upon all pro-lifers to resist opportunistic schemes and laws that undermine and corrode the foundational moral premise of the pro-life movement.

22 Responses to When Will The Moral Insanity End?

  • Putting aside enforceability (on which I think most would agree with you), I don’t see why we shouldn’t support outlawing one evil (unjust discrimination) just because it doesn’t outlaw another evil (abortion). I think most of us will differ with you on the effect of such laws. Outlawing sex or race selective abortion promotes the idea that abortion is at least detrimental to the unborn.

  • Short answer: When Christ comes again in glory to judge the living and the dead . . .

    Political answer: Same reason the NRA (righteously) fights every little “dig” into the Second Amendment. It becomes a slippery slope. Once that camel gets his nose under the tent flap . . .

  • “The killing won’t stop because there will still be a huge demand for abortion, you having utterly failed to convince the majority of people that abortion in itself is actually wrong, and abortion will still be legal.”

    The devil couldn’t have said it better himself Joe. Congrats. Go to confession. Soon.

  • I don’t see the problem with moving incrementally towards the goal of banning all abortions. Granted, banning race and sex selection abortions is not sufficient, but it is a step in the right direction, and is valuable both for legal reasons (as it may force courts to say that you can ban abortion based on the reason it is done) and for educational reasons (in that it brings attention to the humanity of the unborn). In that sense it is no different than the ban on partial birth abortion, or laws requiring parental consent for minors to have abortions, and so forth.

  • I’m thinking that the main reason for this bill is not to stop any abortions, but to send a message — probably only for political grandstanding purposes, but a message nonetheless — that people abort babies for this reason, and to try to force people who abhor discrimination but love abortion into an uncomfortable corner. I suspect that the effort will backfire, but I’m not exactly morally outraged about it.

    As an aside, I wish you would be a little more even-handed about “as soon as their mothers subjectively decide that they don’t want to bear them.” It’s not always the mothers who make the decision, and even where they do, many women feel forced into it. A lot would describe it as “can’t” rather than “don’t want to.” We’re offering redemption, not condemnation, to post-abortive women, remember? Save your wrath for the people who make money off the killings (not that they aren’t redeemable too, but their motives are somewhat more transparent).

  • People get so caught up in defending incrementalism that they never stop to consider whether there is any real progress being made. After 38 years of incrementalism, we still have abortion-on-demand for all 9 months of pregnancy for any reason. I don’t know about any of you, but I don’t consider that progress.

    The “great” pro-life victory of the last four decades was the partial-birth abortion ban, which banned a single procedure in certain cases. I doubt it’s saved a single life.

    Or we’ve got legislative speedbumps like a parental consent requirement that applies as long as:
    -The baby wasn’t conceived in rape
    -The baby wasn’t conceived in incest
    -There is no perceived threat to the life of the mother (bearing in mind that abortionists often claim pregnancy itself is a life-threatening condition)
    -The teen doesn’t just talk to a school nurse about getting an easy court waiver

    I’m fine with incrementalism; I really am. But we darn well better have an end game in mind, or else 38 years from now things aren’t going to look a heck of a lot better than they do now.

    One last point: Some might think I’m overly cynical in pointing out that the GOP’s largest voting bloc is pro-lifers and that, perhaps, if abortion ended that many trusty Republican voters would remain with the party–but that many who favor more liberal economic policies would leave. So it’s undeniably true that the Republicans’ best electoral outlook is a situation in which they appear to be doing everything they can to end abortion, but don’t actually succeed.

    Again, call me cynical, but measures like this or the PBA ban provide great opportunities for the GOP to do some political grandstanding without actually changing anything. They care more about our votes and our dollars than about the babies.

  • “Again, call me cynical, but measures like this or the PBA ban provide great opportunities for the GOP to do some political grandstanding without actually changing anything.”

    And how would the Republicans get a constitutional amendment through Congress Steve banning abortion with the Democrats being totally in favor of abortion? I share your impatience. Tell me how this would be accomplished and I will be happy to share it with every pro-life member of Congress. The problem in banning abortion is not the GOP. It is a Democrat party that is vehemently and overwhelmingly pro-abortion. The Democrats fight tooth and nail against every piece of pro-life legislation. Your criticism of the Republicans ignores that essential part of our political reality.

  • When you cut out the central, core message of the pro-life cause – that ALL abortion is immoral and ought to be illegal because it is murder, the intentional killing of an innocent human being – you undermine the entire movement.

    You do have a good point here. I am in no way in favor of weakening the core pro-life issue, and I am not sure I would support this type of step unless it is made perfectly clear this is only a small step, and no where near the last one. But, just as this legislation potentially undermines the core pro-life argument, it also would undermine the core pro-abortion argument – that abortion is not immoral. To the extent it can cause any reflection on the nature of the human life being destroyed, it forces a recognition that it is in fact a human life. It makes it that much more difficult to blind yourself to the humanity of this alleged “blob of tissue” if it now has to be considered a girl “blob of tissue”, a boy “blob of tissue” or a black “blob of tissue”.

    And as others have said, I would not be surprised that at least some supporters of it are nothing but opportunistic hacks.

  • Steve,

    It seems there are several measures that Republicans in the House have proposed to limit abortions and that seem more than tokens or electioneering.

    You probably haven’t heard them on Catholic blogs since most are straining at the gnat of Lila Rose.

    Finally, if you think that there is no difference between Repubs and Dems on this (the received wisdom of some Catholic bloggers), why don’t you take the word of one of the Dems’ best example of what it is to be pro-abortion:

    http://www.catholicvote.org/discuss/index.php?p=13973

  • Whether this law is a good idea or not, I cannot tell you. I do think it is a good idea to draw attention to the birth rates of certain ethnic groups in this country. Sex selection abortion is widely practiced in this country by certain groups of people. First born children generally reflect the natural girl/boy ratio one would expect. Second and third born children have shocking ratios one would expect to find in China. No I don’t have links, but I remember reading about it in the past few months.

    I suspect the general public has no idea how common the practice is in the United States.

  • Joe, this bill is a good idea. In China and India, baby girls are aborted or exposed since boys are more desired by the family. Here in America, it’s been long known that Planned Parenthood has targeted ethnic and racial minorities because, in their opinion, they “breed like weeds”. So, IMHO, it’s a great way to hamper and cripple PP.

  • I am not opposed to incrementalism as a political tactic.

    I am opposed to any approach that concedes any moral or philosophical ground to the pro-abortionists.

    So you could say I am opposed to a sort of moral incrementalism, whereby we try to drag people along, little by little, to a pro-life position. I believe this will fail.

    This is not a “great way to hamper and cripple PP.” It might work for about as long as the average woman doesn’t know about the law. Then they will learn that they just have to give a socially acceptable reason to murder their child, instead of an unacceptable one.

    “I’m sorry Ms. Lee, we can’t let you murder your child because and only because she is female. However, we will remove this parasitic fetus from your body if you feel that you’d like to go to college and don’t want to have to take any responsibility for your actions right now.”

    This is insanity. This is moral stupidity. I will never support it.

  • Joe,

    I don’t see how this bill concedes any moral or philosophical ground to pro-abortionists. Just the opposite. It highlights the moral contradictions inherent in the pro-abortion position.

  • When pro-abort feminists who go on about “choice” begin to express qualms about sex-selective abortions, it does highlight their hypocrisy, I agree. But there’s no reason to turn that hypocrisy into a law!

    By doing so, we effectively say that abortions that AREN’T done for race or gender selective reasons are ok. We are drawing a much sharper and bolder boundary between acceptable and unacceptable kinds of abortions in the minds of the public. It would be an injustice even IF most abortions were sex-selective, but since the opposite it is true, it is also idiotic in addition to being unjust.

    We don’t want to box ourselves into this corner. Because even if by some magic we could actually enforce these absurd laws, most abortions have nothing to do with race or gender selection, at least in this country. We would eventually have to reach a point at which we would be forced to concede that some abortions are ok, while others aren’t. Not even some, but most.

    This is why we have always rejected exceptions for rape and incest, and “to save the life of the mother.” This is the same problem from the other direction; in saying no to sex and gender selection, we implicitly say yes to everything else. I won’t do it.

  • I mean, we may as well praise Stalin at this point for outlawing abortion for a certain time, for the sole purpose of increasing the population of the USSR after the war. These race and gender policies do not signify a newfound respect for human life; instead they savor of bureaucratic social-engineering.

  • I also have to add that I see nothing morally wrong with desiring a boy instead of a girl. This policy attempts to punish people not for abortion, not for the abominable crime of murdering one’s own child, but for a crime that only matters to people whose religion is radical feminism; desiring a boy instead of a girl.

    How does that not create moral confusions that we don’t need?

  • By doing so, we effectively say that abortions that AREN’T done for race or gender selective reasons are ok.

    Not true. If we pass a ban on partial birth abortions, this is not effectively saying that non-partial birth abortions are okay. If we pass a law requiring parental consent before a minor can get an abortion, we aren’t effectively saying that abortion is okay if a minor gets their parents’ consent (or if they are an adult). And if we ban abortion for reasons of race and sex selection, this doesn’t mean that abortion is okay if done for other reasons.

  • So you could say I am opposed to a sort of moral incrementalism, whereby we try to drag people along, little by little, to a pro-life position. I believe this will fail.

    I don’t know why you think this will fail. It seems to me that when people change there mind on an issue like abortion, they often do so incrementally.

    If a liberal thinks that abortion should be banned in the case of race or sex selection, then they have conceded that it is okay to ban abortion if it is not done for a good reason. The logical next question is to ask what would be a good reason for having an abortion. I believe that if you can get people asking that question, legal abortion will not be long for this world. But to do that, you first need to get people to concede that it matters why a person wants an abortion.

  • I also have to add that I see nothing morally wrong with desiring a boy instead of a girl.

    Neither do I, but I would say that this only serves to highlight the contradiction. Presumably if someone wanted to adopt a child, no one would think it was wrong for them to restrict their search to girls if they wanted a girl or to boys if they wanted a boy. Yet the idea of having an abortion because you want a girl rather than a boy will strike many of the same people as repugnant. And why is that? Because in the case of abortion, you are *killing* the child.

  • BA,

    “Not true. If we pass a ban on partial birth abortions, this is not effectively saying that non-partial birth abortions are okay. If we pass a law requiring parental consent before a minor can get an abortion, we aren’t effectively saying that abortion is okay if a minor gets their parents’ consent (or if they are an adult). And if we ban abortion for reasons of race and sex selection, this doesn’t mean that abortion is okay if done for other reasons.”

    Actually, I think you are wrong. I think in every one of those cases, that message can actually be taken away from the legislation. I can’t even count how many people – liberals or soft conservatives – I have met who actually do oppose partial-birth abortion but not earlier abortions, not first-trimester abortions certainly.

    I don’t want to say I am opposed to banning partial birth abortion, of course. But I think there is a good reason for separating those from other abortions; they really are infanticide. And in that case I am willing to deal with having to restate the case that it is not just infants we want to protect, but all human life.

    This race and gender thing is in a different category as far as I am concerned. It’s just a sin against liberalism to abort specifically for those reasons, and therefore a distraction and even a concession to their absurd claims about these topics.

    Finally, though, please don’t say “it doesn’t mean” as if I think these things mean anything. They don’t. But they do mean something to morally weak individuals who don’t know how to think about this issue. They are comfortable with these distinctions, and they will draw these inferences.

    As for your points about moral incrementalism, I think that can be true for some people. But ultimately I don’t see how you are ever going to get rid of abortion if you focus on reasons. There is no reason that is valid for an abortion. This is what people need to understand. If you fail on that point, and you just convince them that this reason or that reason is bad, they will always find other reasons to justify what they want to do.

    “Yet the idea of having an abortion because you want a girl rather than a boy will strike many of the same people as repugnant. And why is that? Because in the case of abortion, you are *killing* the child.”

    I agree that it strikes many people as repugnant – which is why almost no one in this country would ever admit to such a thing. That’s why it is a non-issue. There are 100 reasons that people find acceptable for abortions; no one needs to state sex-selection as their reason, and no one will.

  • This does seem like an attempt to sort of trick people into taking a pro-life stance. People are so afraid to be called racist these days, so you set them up by making it sound like it’s about race and not about abortion:

    “Did you know that people are X times more likely to abort a black child than a white one?”
    “Wow, that’s horrible!”
    “Why is it horrible?”
    “Well, because it discriminates against blacks!”
    “Who’s it unfair to exactly?”
    “It’s unfair to those black babies . . . . oh wait, they are human beings, aren’t they? Hey, I just became pro-life!”

    It just doesn’t seem like it’d be that easy.

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