Convincing the Apathetic Middle the Truth About Abortion
For the apathetic middle, phrases like “abortion is murder” are an almost guaranteed turnoff and are found repulsive. So how can we convince them the evil of abortion?
Barring some sort of cataclysmic disaster, and assuming the confirmed leak from SCOTUS indicating an impending reversal of Roe v. Wade isn’t an elaborate hoax, it seems that legalized abortion will be taking a mortal blow very soon. Praise God. This is an unbelievable thing, and it still has me in shock.
Although I sit on the other side of the Covid Curtain, and my Soy Minister in Chief has yet again shown he is a lapsed Catholic apostate by trumpeting the “right to abortion,” I am overjoyed at the thought of the international precedent this will set. America, the most powerful nation on earth, will very soon stare down the slaughter of innocents and tell Moloch to take a time out. That demon has had his hour, but God will have His day.
Of course, this does not mean that abortion will go away in toto, as it will be kicked to the states, some of which will doubtless set up their own temples to Baal as they plunge infants into the trash can in order to appease the demon-gods of prosperity. The federal framework of abortion being struck down does not mean that abortion goes away, but it will be reduced dramatically; and this must be celebrated and shouted from the rooftops.
Throughout the coming months and years, there will commence a battle of existential proportion for the soul of a nation, the world that watches in disbelief, and, most importantly, the souls of the infants and adults involved in the destruction of innocent human life.
At 34 years old, I do not know what it is like to live in a world where aborting one’s child is not a normative activity for a secular person. Abortion has been normalized for my generation to such an extent that what has followed is not so much an intrinsic “for or against” the procedure, but instead, a general apathy.
Many in my millennial cohort have never even considered the question of when life begins. The lie that a child in the womb is just a “clump of cells” or “not fully human” is as mundane a truth for the masses as saying something like “too much sugar is bad for your teeth.” There are minorities of strongly pro-life people and strongly pro-death people on the relative fringes of the population, but there exists a large, squishy middle that has no real opinion on the subject.
No doubt emotions and hopes are high in this pro-life moment in a way that they never have been. Finally, it seems, the good guys will have a massive victory and the Gates of Hell will surely not prevail. However, in this fight against Satan and his anti-sacrament of Child Sacrifice, we must venture forward with the apathetic majority in mind, as they are the ones who can still be converted to sanity—unlike the unhinged leftist crowd who will require either a miracle from Heaven or a lobotomy to drop their tired and lifeless reasoning.
For the apathetic middle group, phrases like “abortion is murder” are an almost guaranteed turnoff and are found repulsive. Please, do not confuse my meaning or intention and think that I am trying to pretend that abortion is not, in fact, a homicidal crime—it is. However, when the average person thinks of “murder” they have in their mind a more technical and legal idea that corresponds to the historic definition of willful homicide.
In the law, we speak of mens rea and actus reus, which is to say the guilty mind and the guilty act. For someone to be fully culpable for a grave crime, they must willingly commit a grave act with sufficient reflection and clarity of mind. We understand this easily as Catholics, as it is the theology behind mortal sin—something that has to be done freely and with knowledge and intention.
Regarding the crime of abortion, it has historically been dealt with under the tradition of Common Law, with varying degrees of punishment. It has been called feticide, or child destruction, and in cases where a person intentionally murders the unborn child of a pregnant woman who has not chosen abortion, many places rightly call this a form of murder.
However, in a world where generations have been raised to not see abortion as murder, or to not see the fetus as a person with rights, it is a hard sell to argue to the apathetic majority that abortion is murder. Again, this is not to take away from the crime; it is just an observation.
When we say something is murder, then it is assumed that those involved are murderers. Personally, I believe that the abortionist is a murderer, as he should know better. However, it would be a stretch to say that many of the confused women who seek out the procedure are acting as murderers. As someone who grew up in a fully secular environment, I can tell you that there was never any talk in any of the relevant institutions that form children that would teach a young person the truth about life in the womb.
In addition, many women are regrettably pressured into the activity by a variety of stressors. None of this is to say that there should be no retribution or culpability. It is only to say that from a legal perspective, and a philosophical perspective, the mens rea and the actus reus are simply not there in most cases.
Ultimately, I make these points to suggest that we must proceed with realism in the pro-life moment. It will arguably be legally futile to march forward with a clarion call to have all those involved with abortion treated as “murderers” because many of them simply aren’t. It is a delicate moment we find ourselves in, and the good guys are finally going to have the upper hand. We have a great responsibility on our shoulders, as we possess the truth. Thus, finding a way to transmit this to our neighbors will be paramount in bringing forth a change in the hearts of people and not just in the codes of law.
If we want to ensure lasting pro-life legislation to the best of our abilities, then keeping in mind the nuances of the legal realities surrounding abortion will only help our cause and ensure that Roe v. Wade is buried in the pits of Hell for good.