Over at the Center for Morality and Public Life, President Andrew Haines wisely brought on board a great new author, Catherine Palmer, who has just finished her second year at the College of William and Mary. Ardently pro-life, Catherine also has her own blog, Vita Pro Omni. We welcome her to the ranks of pro-life authors and activists, invoke God’s continued blessings in her life, and pray that she see the end of this scourge in her lifetime. Catherine wrote the following article for her new column at CFMPL. It is reprinted here with her permission.
by Catherine Palmer
There are those ideas which serve the fulfillment of the human person and there are those ideas which diametrically oppose this purpose. Of course, there are also those which are somewhere in-between—but such ideas are less noteworthy and unrelated to our discussion today. For the time-being, I would like to focus on a string of modern thought which has abused humanity and poisoned minds over the last 50 years in particular.
Throughout the course of a few decades, this mentality has essentially seeped into every corner of our society. When considered at face value, this seems an almost shocking phenomenon: how could an ideology so dangerous, so depraved, get past the conscience of millions of Americans? But when we realize that this philosophy is a great masquerader, concealing its true colors behind the guises of “women’s liberation” and “population control”, it all begins to make a bit of sense.
The ideology to which I am referring is, broadly speaking, the pro-choice ideology. This doctrine insists, sans sound premise, that certain human beings ought to be labeled non-persons and thus be denied rights. It insists further that the choice to destroy a living human fetus is fundamental to a woman’s freedom and equal place in society. According to this mindset, abortion is a constitutional right and ought to be protected as such.
The ramifications of this mentality are unspeakable, but not unprecedented. Anytime unpopular human beings are reduced to something disposable, we see horrific effects. We saw it in our segregated nation under Jim Crow laws in the 1950’s, when African-Americans were lynched by the thousands because they were dark-skinned; and we see it in America today with abortion-on-demand, where the unborn are dismembered, burned, and suffocated because they are inconvenient. But I would like to think (and generally do think) that the propagators of these killings would never commit them were they to see them for what they really are.
As far as I understand, segregationists genuinely believed in their racial ideology and pro-choicers (by and large) truly believe in abortion as a just societal policy. But popular ideologies may or may not be at the service of truth. And there is good evidence that neither the segregationist nor the abortionist has his story straight.
By drawing an analogy to segregated America I do not intend to offend pro-choice readers but rather to illuminate a historical moral evil that is perhaps more clearly a moral evil due to the boon of retrospect. Masquerading ideologies are characteristically deceiving in their own time, but become transparent in following years.
This transparency comes about in several ways, but two in particular. Perhaps one could classify them as a single means involving paired steps. In any case, it seems there are several initiatives we must undertake to try to disrobe the costumed pro-choice ideology, leaving it naked and stripped of its charm.
The first initiative is educational in nature. In short, we have a responsibility to learn the facts about the unborn. The abortion question ultimately comes down to their moral status, so knowing 1) what they are and 2) how to articulate what they are is crucial. Embryology, biology, philosophy, sociology—all are at our service in correcting the inimical pro-choice mindset. Where there is intellectual confusion, we must submit ourselves to the service of truth and aim to correct it.
The second initiative is active in nature. Armed with proper knowledge, we can enter the realms of higher education and politics to make a legitimate case for life. This is what groups like ALL (American Life League), AUL (Americans United for Life), and the Susan B. Anthony List do, to name a few pro-life powerhouses. Without resorting to extremist tactics, never considering violence, these organizations nonetheless make measurable strides toward advancing pro-life philosophy and policy.
Utilizing history as our teacher, we see that the Civil Rights Movement required authors and activists, professors and preachers, to bare segregation for the world to see. The Pro-Life Movement will likely prove no different.
Surely, inhuman ideologies parading in dress-up clothes and pretending to be human are among the most dangerous sort— and C.S. Lewis understood this ably: “But in general, take my advice, when you meet anything that’s going to be human and isn’t yet, or used to be human once and isn’t now, or ought to be human and isn’t, keep your eyes on it and feel for your hatchet.” Pro-choice euphemisms, be gone.
 Joseph M. Scheidler, paraphrased