Slavery then, abortion now

In today’s Clarion-Ledger, CNN news analyst Kirsten Powers has a column titled “‘Fetal heartbeat’ laws will hurt women.”  In her rambling, pro-abortion attempt to claim the moral high ground–which is simply impossible–she says:

Recently, I followed the outrage over a New York abortion law, which conservatives claim allows abortion even as the woman is giving birth…. Many defenders of he redundant ‘Born Alive’ act claim that if even one baby is not provided medical care after surviving an abortion, it is reason enough for the law.  But when it comes to far more American children being murdered by guns, many of the same people provide only ‘thoughts and prayers,’ not legislation.  I’m struggling to see the moral consistency here.

Yes, it’s clear to see that Ms. Powers does have trouble identifying moral consistency.  If she did, she would see that to support abortion on demand (aka, the right to kill the unborn) and to want to protect children in schools is as morally inconsistent as it’s possible to get.  Okay to murder them before they’re born, but not afterwards.

Btw, she makes the mistake of thinking because someone is prolife, they are against all gun control.  Fully half the Christian conservatives I know while supporting tough anti-abortion legislation also want tighter gun control laws.  You don’t hear them because the Second Amendment and NRA advocates suck all the air out of the room and frequently shame those who try to be the voice of sanity here.

Personally, I resent our Clarion-Ledger presenting such a skewed and unworthy column.

I’m reading David McCullough’s The Pioneers: The Heroic Story of the Settlers Who Brought the American Ideal West.  By “West,” McCullough refers to Ohio.  His little history covers the 1787 Northwest Ordinance and the settling of Ohio into the early 19th century.  One of the issues was slavery.

From the beginning–i.e., from the Northwest Ordinance itself–Ohio and that territory was to be slave free.  But when Thomas Jefferson became President, he and his team decided there would be a certain amount of slavery allowed.  No man could be a slave after age 35, no woman after age 25, said the clause Jefferson wanted inserted into the state charter.  But the citizens rebelled and held their ground, and the original mandate remained.

One of the primary voices for freedom was that of Ephraim Cutler, who figures large in McCullough’s story.  On a cattle drive, bringing a herd to markets in the east, Cutler’s group came upon “a party of slave drivers and masters, with two or three ‘droves’ of Negroes.”  Later, Cutler told how he “gave one of the drivers and the master who rode in a carriage, a lecture they will be likely to remember.”  (p. 146)

Cutler noted that he felt better for having done it.  “I felt some energy, and what little humility I possess was roused at this shocking sight.”

We understand his revulsion at slavery and we appreciate his courageous stand, even when it seemed to make little difference.

That’s us and the abortion issue today.

Slavery was defended by the powers that be.  Even Jefferson himself, lauded by everyone from JFK on down as the wisest and best mind ever to lead this country, was on the wrong side of the issue.

So with abortion.  Our politicians will declare that “personally I am opposed to it, but do not wish to impose my view on others.”  And other such silliness.

The courageous had no trouble imposing their views on slavery on the society.  And they were right to do so.

Let us be faithful and outspoken in our defense of the rights of the unborn.


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