Guest Post: Donald Trump and the True “Victims” of Abortion
What does it mean to be pro-life?
Guest post by Dr. Mark Christian
Donald Trump has ignited another firestorm, and this time, he should have stood his ground. His interview with Chris Matthews yesterday on MSNBC has people on both sides of the abortion issue condemning, cursing, and distancing themselves from Trump’s point of view. I contend, however, that Trump’s thoughts on the matter opened up a discussion that is long overdue.
Trump said that if abortion became illegal (which isn’t likely anytime soon), he felt it would be only right for there to be a punishment of some kind for the women who seek out and receive illegal abortions. His campaign quickly backtracked and said that the pregnant women (whom they described as victims) should not be punished, but rather only the doctors who perform the illegal procedures.
As an OB/GYN, the son of an OB/GYN, from Egypt, I have a very different take on the matter. I know that the unborn child is alive, innocent, and deserving of life from the very day of conception.
Most Muslim countries outlaw all abortions after 14 weeks of gestation. That is the age the imams (religious teachers) decided is when life has unarguably begun, guided by some verses of the Quran. Because of the stringent abortion laws, there is a robust black market in illegal abortions. When those who participate in abortions are caught, all are gravely punished; and if the woman is single, her fate is even worse. She usually becomes the victim of an honor killing. That horrible, barbaric culture spawns a dark black market that we have to avoid at all costs.
When I first came to America, I spent seven years working in a pro-life clinic serving young girls and women facing unplanned pregnancies. I saw first-hand the difficulties these women face. But I believe Trump’s statement should be an opportunity for us to begin a real dialogue about abortion in this country and whether we actually believe that unborn lives matter.
I firmly believe that those who call themselves Pro-Life, yet still use the lives of the innocent unborn as a political chess pieces, or tragic vehicles for fundraising, without resolving to adequately deal with the overarching circumstances that surround the issue, share deeply in the guilt of those who bring about the deaths of innocent human life.
The head-spinning rapidity of Trump’s backpedaling aside, the fact that the campaign said that the women, too, are victims and should not be punished, is at once distressing and repugnant. Let’s not mince words here – women who willfully go into an abortion clinic with the intent to kill their unborn child are not innocent victims. As of yet, I haven’t heard of any abortion clinics kidnapping pregnant women and forcing them to abort their babies.
Some women, to be fair, feel pressured to have an abortion, either by family, the father, or friends. But just as there is pressure to join a gang or shoot someone for “dissing” you, this does not relieve you of the responsibility for having fired the shot. A woman has the opportunity to pursue any number of options for her unborn child. Feeling “pressure” does not absolve her of her role in seeking out someone willing to destroy the unborn child in her womb.
For any politician to suggest that the pregnant woman should bear no culpability for her role in pursuing an abortion is an egregious example of blatant pandering, and represents the ultimate betrayal of the only truly innocent party in the whole sordid affair, the unborn child.
It is time we ask ourselves some very difficult questions. What does it mean to be pro-life? What steps need to be taken to make abortion illegal in this country and if we succeed in outlawing abortion, what are some of the solutions we can offer to prevent the emergence of a black market? What can we do to assist women facing an unwanted pregnancy? Are we ready to get serious about finding solutions to these problems rather than bandying about empty slogans? Trump answered honestly at first, and should have let his words stand on their own merit. Will anyone else step up and do the same?
In truth, if a person is pressured by another to kill someone else, we have a name for that – conspiracy to commit murder – and such existing laws would/should apply to the fathers, families or friends who are exerting pressure on the mother to abort.
The bottom line is clear – if abortion is outlawed, it should be treated as any other crime, with prosecution for the perpetrator, the facilitators and their accessories, both before and after the fact. To suggest otherwise is evidence of unadulterated moral corruption, and stands as an indictment of society as a whole.