My friend and fellow Mere Fidelity cast member Matt Lee Anderson had a piece on the subject of the pro-life focus on abortion over on Vox. It is well worth your time. The following are a few selected quotations:
But for the pro-lifer, that “clump of cells” is as wondrous, as potent, as mysterious as, well, the cosmos. The recognition of the “baby” induces a hushed reverence. The universe once appeared out of nothing, a fact that reasonably seems to induce the strange vertigo of awe, but the formation of a new human being is not so different from this. The embryo contains a whole world of possibilities and adventures. The “newcomer,” Hannah Arendt once wrote, “possesses the capacity of beginning something anew.” For those weary and afraid, the opportunity for a new start that the embryo announces momentarily refreshes their spirits.
These natural reverences permeate the pro-life movement’s ethos. While many pro-lifers are at home speaking the language of rights and respect required for democratic political discourse, we are — if our own rhetoric is at all truthful — animated by something much nearer to love. We cannot shed ourselves of the sense that there is something too powerful, something too good about the human being, to make its life or its death a matter for our choice. It is better for the embryo to go on existing, for it and for us and for the cosmos whose beauty new human life adorns and deepens.
For the pro-lifer, there is no clearer instance of the marginalized, the voiceless, and the vulnerable than in the womb — and no more profound source of wonder at the limitless possibilities that human life is capable of achieving. The early embryo looks nothing like us, has none of our capabilities, drains the mother’s resources, and often requires the mother to sacrifice many of her interests. If in these conditions one can see something worthwhile, something that can be a benefit or a blessing to the world even when unwanted, then one can start to glimpse why pro-lifers are so animated and so patient in their efforts.
Read the whole piece here.