ethics politics

harder than it looks…

I’ve got a quick thought to share…

It’s easy to distance ourselves from people like Hitler and Stalin. We can’t imagine such horrible evils. I mean really, what was the rest of the world doing, right? Why didn’t someone stop him sooner? I guess they just stood by and said, ‘Who are we to say otherwise?’

While I’m sure it’s not a one-for-one analogy, many would say that the large number of modern abortions is comparable to the genocide of those days, and that the same thing is happening today, and still, the world stands by and says, ‘Who are we to say otherwise?’

Now, abortion is a huge issue and I’m not going to take the time to offer a well-nuanced and carefully phrased view, but what if this was actually the case?

One of the small, behind the scenes things that helped bring an end to the regimes all those years ago was people using their voice to let the world know about what was really happening, not what they wanted you to think was happening. (go out right now and watch the movie ‘Sophie Scholl’ – it’s incredible!)

My point is, they didn’t start by physically going in with guns blazing. Some had to make the difficult but necessary decision to not act then and there, but to wait and tell others that could make a bigger, more permanent difference.

What if abortion is a modern-day genocide?

Well, if it is, I think something needs to be done. But what? Try and get the law changed? Use brute political force? Fund Christian political lobby groups?

I think that’s not the wisest way. I think we’ve got to face the fact that the abortion issue, as horrible as it is, is only a part of a much more foundational issue – toxic and destructive human sexual values and practices…

Changing laws won’t last. It won’t help. We’ve got to do the difficult work of influencing people. Now. With grace and truth.

That’s my quick thought…


4 replies on “harder than it looks…”

Hey Dale

Can you txt/phone me sometime today – I forgot to bring your cellph number up to auckland with me! (2pm tomorrow is out unfortunately – maybe 3:30ish?)


Hi Dale,

I’d like to pass on my condolences regarding your grandmother. No matter how sure we are that loved ones are resting with Christ, it is still hard for us to let them go.

Regarding your comments:

First, “modern day genocides” do still exist. Darfur comes immediately to mind. Recently there have been the genocides in Iraq (the Kurds murdered by Saddam Hussien), in Bosnia, in Rwanda,in Cambodia — they go on and on.

I often hear abortion referred to as “genocide” — usually with the implication that genocide is otherwise a thing of the past. There is a danger that we forget that there are on-going genocides in the world.

We should be fighting these genocides as strongly as we are fighting abortion.

Please don’t get the idea that I condone abortion. I would much prefer it to go away. But I think that religious right organizations are “attacking” abortion in the wrong way. I have no idea how much time and money is being spent in the legal fight against abortion in the US — Millions of dollars? Tens of millions? Hundreds?

I think that instead of trying to make abortion “go away” by trying to make it illegal (it won’t go away — it will just go underground, and women will die in back rooms and back alleys getting abortions like they did in the US prior to the legalliuzation of abortion), we should be trying to make it irrelevent. How do you make it irrelevnet?

— Strengthen the family
— Educate young women & young men about the consequences of sexual promicuity
— Provide easy access to low cost birth control
— Provide easy-to-access affordable pre- and post-natal care
— Strengthen the adoption system
— Provide substantial support for child rearing AFTER the birth happens
— remove the stigma of pregnancy from unwed mothers (especially teens) within the Chrisitan community

I’d also like to ask why we are spending so much money fighting abortion in the United States when the vast majority of abortions are taking place in the developing world. Does it make sense to allocate 90% of the resources to fight 10% of the problem? note: I understand that the most abortions in any country are in China — something like 30% of all abortions worldwide, and that 78% of abortions are in the “developing world”. I don’t know what the real distribution of resources is to fight abortion in the US versus the rest of the world, but it appears to me that we have an imbalance of resources versus magnitude of problem.

take care,


Excellent comment Joe.

I personally don’t have a problem with the concept of abortion up to a certain point. And I don’t know where that point is.

I know that ‘God’ is responsible for a massive amount of abortions because of the way the reproductive system culls possible mutations and weak embryos. When you are at your healthiest 3/4 of all conceptions are naturally aborted apparently.

I don’t believe that there is any evidence for such a thing as a soul. If you do believe in a soul what do you make of identical twins? Do they have the same soul? What about a chimera (two eggs that merge)? Does that person have two souls?

I don’t believe that there is any evidence that a cluster of 100 cells has any ability to suffer and experiences no sense of loss.

I do believe that there comes a time when a central nervous systems develops and that at some stage during pregnancy there occurs human deserving of our protection. I don’t know when this time is though.

The tendency to live in a world of absolutes can IMHO cause people to inappropriately focus on the wrong issues.

I’m with Joe on this one. How about focussing on the parts of the world where we know that real human suffering is occurring?

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