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Abortion Abolitionism Is Not the Answer for Republicans

The opinions expressed by columnists are their own and do not necessarily represent the views of
AP Photo/Ng Han Guan

In a world created by someone with absolutely consistent anti-abortion views, not only would all abortions from conception to birth be illegal, those who receive an abortion, or aid and abet one, would be criminally charged in the exact same way as if that zygote or fetus were a one-month-old human baby. That’s because, to a person with absolutely consistent anti-abortion views, that zygote or fetus exists on the exact same moral and legal plane as any other human being who exists outside the womb.


That means at least an attempted murder charge for the teenaged mother who takes an abortifacient after a rape. That means a murder charge if she waits until a pregnancy confirmation to have an abortion. It also means aiding and abetting, if not outright murder, charges for the physician and any nurses or other healthcare providers who assist. It means investigations into anything that happens during a pregnancy that results in miscarriage, especially ‘suspicious’ falls or bruises. Should the mother be charged or was this a mere accident? And if it was just an accident, was the mother being unlawfully risky? Would any involuntary manslaughter charges apply?

Maybe those scenarios sound absurd, but they would absolutely apply in a world created by the consistent abortion abolitionist. For those of us who abhor the idea of a police state, imagine the kind of police state it would take to enforce extreme anti-abortion laws to the fullest. The 2-day-old union of sperm and egg is, after all, a human life deserving of every protection given to every other human life, according to this view.

“Oh, we’d never criminally charge the mother in this way,” you say. Fine, and I agree, but that means you are openly admitting that there is nuance to the abortion issue. Otherwise, why would the demise of a 2-day-old zygote deserve any less investigation or punishment than the murder of a 60-year-old woman?


And while you’re admitting to nuance, you should know that most every other reasonable person also has nuanced views on the subject. They may differ from yours or mine, but in many case they are just as thought out and sincerely held. Depending on the audience, I’ve been called both a religious extremist and a baby-murdering monster for what I consider balanced views on the topic.

But that’s what makes abortion such a divisive issue. It’s not as black and white as either extreme side would have us believe. When does life actually begin? Is a 2-day-old zygote an actual life or potential life? If you’re religious, when is a soul conferred? Is it immediately after the union of sperm and egg or sometime thereafter, perhaps when the heart and brain is formed and the blood begins flowing? If you can freeze a zygote or embryo for a hundred years before restarting the process, is that a soul or just a potential life?

Yes, there are evil leftists who relish the thought of as many abortions as possible up to and even after delivery, and I think it’s fair to say that these are not good or sincere people. Unfortunately, this includes almost every elected Democrat. On the other end, there are also complete abortion abolitionists out there who would, if they had the power, criminally charge anyone and everyone involved in any abortion from conception to birth. I know some of them and I do believe they are good people who mean well. They are small in number, to be sure, and their views are considered extreme by most, but to their credit they are at least intellectually consistent. 


But their views, if enacted into actual law, aren’t sustainable and they certainly aren’t politically viable. In fact, were Republicans to take the intellectually consistent pro-life position, they would absolutely get wasted electorally, handing what’s left of the country over to leftist Democrats. That’s why even the staunchest pro-life politicians aren’t for tossing a rape victim in prison for having an abortion, and if they publically admitted such a stand they wouldn’t have a snowball’s chance of getting elected dog-catcher even in the reddest of areas. Many pro-life Republican politicians, in fact, admit to nuance and allow for it in their stated policies. But not all.

Even now, strict abortion positions are hurting rather than helping GOP candidates. Like it or not, “no abortions, no exceptions” just isn’t a view held by the vast majority of the country. However, most of the country isn’t comfortable with mid to late term abortions either, and that’s a good thing. Instead of trying to argue for no rape or incest exceptions, how about focusing on the fact that leftists are completely cool with crushing a fully-formed baby’s brain and sucking it out with a vacuum cleaner? How about pointing out that if Democrats had their way, there would be a federal abortion law making it completely legal all the way to birth? That’s the kind of rhetoric we need to be crafting while not allowing for the kind that makes martyrs out of child rape victims having to cross state lines.


On this issue, most people don’t want extremes. They want laws that are fair, make sense, and are enforceable and sustainable for everyone. While I respect the arguments of abortion abolitionists who are intellectually consistent, I also would respectfully implore them to understand that if we hand the rest of the country over to leftist Democrats hellbent on destroying it, countless more babies will die in the long run.

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