Justifying abortion leads to increased injustices
Letter to the Editor
I was greatly troubled by the April 5 Inside Column by Lauren Berrigan, "Assess abortion cases separately." Her arguments seep with logical contradictions, drastic generalizations and a most shocking disregard for the truth.
So, what is the truth? The language used by Berrigan attempts to veil the reality of what is occurring in an abortion. She says, "Her baby's health forced doctors to perform a medical abortion." Is killing the patient a sound means of "protecting the health" of the baby? Indeed, the health of the baby is not what this young woman had in mind when she and her doctor chose (not, "were forced") to kill him or her.
It is evident in Berrigan's value system that human life must first be scrutinized to determine its relative convenience, comfort and level of dependency before the person is allowed to live. If we use these criteria before giving someone the right to life, there will be no end to the violations of life. Those lives that are vulnerable, those who cause inconvenience to another may then be discarded. Not just the unborn fall into this category, but soon the sick, the aged, the poor and the handicapped. If human life is not valued regardless of the circumstance, then no one is safe.
Perhaps the most disturbing thing about Berrigan's article is her satisfaction with contradictions. She is perfectly happy using words like, "baby" and even goes as far as to say, "I do believe that the rights of the unborn child should be protected." However, after admitting the truth of the personhood of the unborn child, she then sees nothing wrong with killing him or her for the sake of "future opportunities." If you agree that the unborn child is a person and has rights, how can you then proceed to allow him or her to be killed in any circumstance?
Allowing the circumstance to dictate whether or not killing a person is permissible is a frightening prospect when considering morality. One need not think to hard to discover an example when the circumstances of having a 6-year-old child present a burden to the parents' "future opportunities." The only difference between this case and the case of abortion is the child's stage of development.
Where do you draw the line? Birth? Viability? Both of these are slippery lines. The former is a mere matter of spacio-temporal location, and the later is subject to technological advancement. Either human life is always protected, or there will be no end to the treacheries born from human cruelty.
April 5, 2000
All Viewpoint Stories for Thursday, April 6, 2000