With the 30th anniversary of the Roe vs. Wade decision coming up
next Wednesday, is it a positive sign that many abortion supporters have
learned from the Japanese and no longer pretend?
Thirty years ago, pro-abortion stories commonly dehumanized
unborn children and made abortion seem easy: 15 minutes to feel "like a
brand-new woman," the Omaha World-Herald declared. The San Francisco
Chronicle told how a typical young woman "came back from the abortion
smiling" and telling her patiently waiting mother: "I'm starved. Let's go to
That was conventional liberal talk in those days. Now, even
feminists admit that abortion is sorrowful and that the conflict about it
will not go away. Abortion yields too much gut guilt to be ignored.
Aborting mothers in Japan have known that for a long time. They
typically make or buy mizuko jizos, small statues of
babies. They dress the statues in bibs and knitted caps, and leave next to
the statues bottles of milk, baby rattles and furry toys. You can find
stacks of mizuko jizos in cemeteries and also in
special temples where they are housed. Mourning parents pay hundreds of
dollars per year to have a small statue bathed and dressed, with incense
burned and prayers recited.
One survey showed 86 percent of Japanese women and 76 percent of
men saying they felt or would feel guilty upon having an abortion or
pressuring their partners to have one. In this country, abortion advocates
have generally sneered at the reality of post-abortion syndrome. Maybe now
they will accept it and call for government provision of "grief
Mourning is important when death has visited. But mourning
becomes electric only when people are moved to action, and particularly to
help other innocents from dying as well. Confession not followed by
repentance and action is suspect.
A remarkable new book by Alexander Tsiaras and Barry Werth,
"From Conception to Birth," uses the latest technology to show in marvelous
detail the clearly human (and very cute) unborn baby at many stages,
including at eight weeks of age, the time many abortions take place. Time
reported on the new book under a headline, "What scientists have learned
about those amazing first nine months." Sadly, Time did not suggest that our
new knowledge should lead us to protect the children depicted.
It seems bizarre to defend abortion when it so clearly stops the
beating heart of an innocent human being. The ignorance or pretense of some
folks 30 years ago was no excuse, but now that the evil is acknowledged, do
we need any clearer indication of man's sin than our recognition of the
unborn child's humanity combined with our refusal to offer protection?
Let's glance at one other aspect of suppressing the truth. From
"Conception to Birth" includes not only wonderful pictures but explanation
about "the grand plan for human reproduction." Whose plan? The book clearly
points to a planner, but it begins with a quotation from Charles Darwin and
periodically sprinkles in lines suggesting that these marvels are the result
of plan-less evolution.
And so, despite the evidence accumulated for 30 years since the
Roe vs. Wade decision, we still face a traditional movie scene. Behold, a
locomotive (fueled by both feminism and male selfishness) barreling down the
tracks. Cut to a lovely lass (in this case, a lovely unborn child) tied to
the cold rails. Cut to train. Cut to lass. Then cut to the hero riding his
horse hard as he races to untie his sweetheart before she is sliced to bits.
This is no movie. The locomotive has run over 40 million unborn
children, sometimes cutting them up piece by piece, sometimes vacuuming them
up, sometimes poisoning them. But will most of the next 40 million be
rescued? Depends on whether many of us are content with guilt without
action, except the action of paying for our