Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Consistently Pro-Life, part 2

In an earlier post I declared my commitment to the pro-life movement. I am unashamedly and unreservedly anti-abortion. I can think of no reason why abortion is ever a good idea. However, I have a lot of reservations about the so-called pro-life movement. Some of those I outlined earlier. Other reservations I will not go into except to say that too often those who are pro-life are naive and too easily manipulated by political operatives.

For now, let me raise the issue of consistency. Many individuals who consider themselves to be pro-life have not taken the time to consider all the implications of their beliefs. For if we are to be "pro-life," we must be pro-life in all aspect of life and on all political issues.
  • Gun Control. If we are going to be in favor of life, we should support measures that protect all life. Therefore, it should not be too much to ask that we regulate the ownership and use of certain guns. I can think of no reason for a private citizen to own an automatic weapon or an assault rifle. Many lives could be saved each year with careful regulation and oversight of gun ownership. It is frequently the same people who are pro-life and pro-gun. 
  • Health Care. All people should have access to the latest advancements in medical technology. Unfortunately, often those who are opposed to abortion are also opposed to greater access to health care.
  • Euthanasia. The end of life is just as valuable, and sacred, as the beginning. We cannot neglect the elderly in institutions and in private homes who are forgotten and taken for granted.
  • Capital Punishment. Here is the big one. We cannot continue to condemn people to hell by putting them to death. I choose to be pro-life by opposing abortion and the death penalty. Just because someone is a criminal it does not mean that his life is not precious to God. Again, it is the same people who favor expanding capital punishment and restricting abortion.
  • Assisted Suicide. Do not tell me that a person should be allowed to take his life. Do not talk about merciful doctors who provide drugs and counsel to end a life. Being pro-life means opposing those who practice this and holding them accountable.
  • War. I know that there is a long history of "just war" from at least the time of Augustine. I am also well aware of the Old Testament commands of God to annihilate enemies. But, I also know and love committed Christian pacifists who love and obey God. I am not ready to become a pacifist, but I am trying to struggle with how I can be pro-life and support military action.
There you have it. We pro-lifers need to get our ducks in a row. I can no longer live with these inconsistencies in my life. I challenge you to evaluate and change where you need to as well.

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