Rachel Lucas has some thoughts on hypocrisy, about abortion. “Touré, of the genius lineup at MSNBC, born in 1971, has thoughts about the 40th anniversary of Roe v Wade.”
The discussion in comments to the post ranged, and was often civil. And I just had to dip my oar into those waters. And I commented about using the legal term “murder” when criminal charges weren’t warranted for a legal act, nor verdict rendered in a court of law. Umbrage was raised.
So I explained myself. Ahem.
“An extraordinary claim requires extraordinary evidence.”
Um, actually, I was thinking more of the difference between a system of laws, defined by men and women, that defines a crime labeled “murder”. As I recall, the commandments are content with the term “kill”, which I take to mean taking the life of another.
Murder I consider a legal term, and is awarded by a court within the system of laws. It bases findings on evidence, prosecution, defense, and until the verdict is reached, the presumption is “alleged” or “charged”.
And, no, I do *not* confuse, in my mind, criminal findings and charges and prosecutions with right and wrong, they are about the law, about what is written, how men and women interpret that law, how men and women go about messing with various lives to “prove” this point or that.
I will mention, though, the historic point where the Church initially considered a child to become a “person” — the rite of confirmation. Whether this was because, until modern times reduced infant mortality *drastically* and the Church and society held that children were closer to God and called home so readily, that surviving to puberty age indicated achieving personhood, and a soul to stand as a person in the eyes of God and man.
Another aspect of remote soul-blessing is the rite of baptism, which some hold cannot be held until birth, and others until 18-25 or so. I note that Jesus berated his disciples about “Suffer the little children to come unto me, and forbid them not.” This not only indicates inclusion of children in the love of Christ — but shows that particular interpretation of God’s love <em>contradicted</em> the belief and teaching at the time. I wonder if the threshold is that children and adults must be able to walk and have the desire to be included? I don’t know how fine to draw that distinction. In the years since, people have held all kinds of thresholds in mind.
What I do know, is that the New and Old Testament admonished men and women to bear children, and to rear them in the love and fear of God. To me, that is the point to draw, and concern over abortion completely and totally misses the point. To me, “sacred” begins with raising children intent on living the culture — the values, the rituals, the habits, the observances and celebrations — of the home they are raised in, including raising children of their own in the values and beliefs the family adheres to. My own thinking is that this is the foundation of community, of state, of nation — of any faith.
I don’t mean promiscuity, or that family is the sole goal of life. I just find the quibbling over when abortion is acceptable as a fundamental truth to be disheartening. Every child that could have grown to respect and serve in their faith and/or community is a loss to that faith and/or community. Whether it is killing, whether it is avoidable, whether it is wrong — these are matters of conscience and law. But conscience and law are *not* fundamental, incontrovertible truths. Because they can and each has been argued, and people do believe and act in opposing ways.
I just thought I had said something about how I was uncomfortable with people flinging a word from the criminal realm of word usage as if it were the verdict of a court of law, in instances where no such charge had been tried and verdict rendered. Huh.
And, no, I was adopted. I understand my birth mother never recovered her place in family or community, and committed suicide from depression. I had an aunt on the US hospital ship “Hope” off Normandy Beach on D-Day, in WWII. During her service to the military (she retired after 30 years service), she was required to have an abortion; in her last years that tormented her a great deal, and she never did marry.
I watched a neighbor put his mother-in-law into a nursing home. She had lived alone in a small house, was very paranoid, in her nineties, and her demands about what food she wanted brought to her, prepared, etc. got demanding. So into the home she went. She was confused and very fearful from day 1; and dead in four months.
There are different kinds of killings, and honoring the sacred, and deciding what to do. There <em>are</em> life and death choices. Banning abortion because we deny that there is such a thing as a life-and-death choice belittles us all. Not because abortion is a good thing, it is not. But because banning abortion, etc., denies our <em>individual</em> responsibilities to take life, all life, seriously.
And, then, I despise the hypocrisy of denigrating abortion, and not following through with every single, last instance, “Yep. I got your medical bills, etc., and will take care of the child and raise it.” Leaving a child inadequately parented, or abandoned, has to be at *least* as foul as the abortion would have been.
Riddle me this. If we raised our children to revere life, to understand place, discipline, whatever we hold sacred and true — why would we worry about abortion? Hasn’t the damage to soul and to community been committed long before those involved in an abortion ever meet? But few want to address that aspect of the problem. Many are satisfied with the lurid details of the end of the trail of devastation, at the abortion.