By Rebecca Stapleford
Editor’s note. This appeared at Secular Pro-Life and is reposted with permission.
Chances are, if you’ve been exposed to the writings and ideas of the modern progressive social justice movement, you’ve encountered the concept of privilege—a common term used to describe the favorable treatment of certain groups by society as held in contrast to the discrimination faced by other groups. Common examples given of privilege are white privilege, male privilege, Christian privilege, heterosexual privilege, cisgender privilege, able-bodied privilege and class privilege.
Members of privileged groups are reminded of their favored status and encouraged to “check their privilege” by comparing their experiences to the average experiences of members of oppressed groups and recognizing the social, political, and economic inequalities that exist in the lives of the latter. Towards this end, activists write up privilege checklists that outline specific examples of privilege for a certain privileged group. Privilege checklists have been written for almost every possible group of people—except for one group.
The unborn have been left behind by progressive social justice movement. They aren’t even considered to be people. In an attempt to raise awareness of this injustice I have compiled a checklist for born privilege—the privilege experienced by individuals who are already born.
- No one tells your bereaved parents that they can always try again, that you weren’t a “real baby,” or that it was a good thing that you died because you probably were defective anyway.
- Society doesn’t believe that ending your life is the best solution to the problems and challenges that you might face in the future.
- The law doesn’t deny you personhood based on age, personal appearance, size, level of development, degree of dependency, or current temporary lack of consciousness.
- The law protects your life, even if your mother wants to end it.
- Society doesn’t try to justify killing you based on the hardships experienced by your mother. Instead, we try to help both you and your mother through your hardships.
- People who fight for your basic, most fundamental right to live are almost universally supported and encouraged. No one accuses them of being religious theocrats who just want to force their beliefs on everyone else and who want to oppress women. (Note: This privilege is obviously not experienced by death row inmates.)
- Your right to live is almost universally acknowledged and respected by everyone, regardless of religious beliefs or lack thereof. (Note: This privilege is obviously not experienced by death row inmates.)
- There is not a dedicated movement of people who honestly believe that only through having the right to kill you, an innocent human being, can women achieve equality with men and be liberated from the bonds of patriarchal oppression.
- No one denies that you are, in fact, a human being.
- The UN and various NGOs do not suggest that the killing of people like you is an important and acceptable way to reduce world overpopulation.
I could go on, but by now you should get the general idea. While there are many groups oppressed in our society, which still struggles to recognize the dream of “liberty and justice for all”, no group is more oppressed than the unborn. No other group has their personhood, humanity, and right to life (which is the most fundamental human right on which all other rights depend) regularly denied by society. Modern progressives need to realize that in order to truly stand up for social justice for all of humanity, it is absolutely necessary to fight for the unborn and their rights as well.