By Dave Andrusko
Maybe it’s because my youngest just graduated from college, but I have a particularly soft spot in my heart for pro-lifers who stand up to be counted in universities where when the topic of abortion is brought up there is an immediate end to “tolerance and diversity.”
Which brings me to “For an open abortion dialogue,” which appears in the Yale Daily News.
Elizabeth Gray Henry doesn’t ask for a lot–a less hostile reception in “our college community, which strives to be a place of frank and open exchange” which she write “is closed-minded to the point of absurdity when it comes to arguments from people like me, who believe that abortion is wrong.”
Her arguments are very much worth reading. But where you learn the most is the manner in which pro-abortionists respond. The answers fit into four categories:
(1) Talk about something else (premarital sex, for example), always a favorite tactic.
(2) Insist no one knows when human life begins—a patently absurd contention—by a rhetorical slight-of-hand. Without so much as a “by your pardon,” they conflate basic biology with “personhood,” which is a legal term.
(3) Ad hominem (personal) attacks Never a pretty sight.
(4) Misrepresentation. For example, when Ms. Henry talks about slavery and abortion, she is not saying the unborn child is a slave. She is drawing a comparison (as one defender explained) and asking for consistency. Would those who tell pro-lifers “don’t force your morality on me” accept the same rationale from a 19th century slaveholder when confronted by an abolitionist?
My hat is off to Ms. Henry and to all those other pro-lifers on campuses where it takes courage to unabashedly affirm your beliefs!
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