Mike Adams

B. Build a bridge to the central issue. Get to know an adult who is a product of rape. Then, ask the proponent of the rape exception whether it would be permissible to kill your adult friend who is a product of rape. They will, of course, say that it isn’t permissible to kill them now. Ask them why not. They will likely say that killing the unborn is “different” because of size (they are smaller), level of development (they are less developed), environment (placement in the womb), or degree of dependency (the unborn are not “viable”). Each of these arguments is flawed and each tends to undermine human equality. For example, the argument that one’s right to life is contingent upon size means that women have less of a right to life than men. It also means Asians have less of a right to life than Caucasians. As you defeat each “that’s different” argument, you will gradually lead them to conclude that the unborn are indeed innocent human beings and that there is no meaningful distinction between the terms “human being” and “person.”

C. Capture the moral high ground. People often say there is a double standard is displayed by those who support the death penalty and oppose abortion. But that is absurd. A double standard exists when one applies two different standards to the same thing. Clearly, an unborn innocent is not “the same thing” as a convicted murderer. True moral inconsistency exists among those who would execute the product of rape while allowing the rapist to live. That moral inconsistency is enshrined in our current constitutional jurisprudence. The rape victim has a right to abort the product of rape because the unborn have no rights regardless of the circumstances of their conception. Yet the rapist has a constitutional right to be spared execution. It is simply morally indefensible to execute the innocent product of rape instead of the guilty perpetrator of rape. Ask the proponent of the so-called rape exception to defend killing the innocent and sparing the guilty.

Getting in the driver’s seat on the abortion issue is important. Staying in the driver’s seat is just as important – especially when the conversation takes a turn toward the difficult cases of rape and incest. But you can do it without concocting false arguments that really only avoid the issue. It’s just as easy as learning your ABCs.


Mike Adams

Mike Adams is a criminology professor at the University of North Carolina Wilmington and author of Letters to a Young Progressive: How To Avoid Wasting Your Life Protesting Things You Don't Understand.