For a long time the leaders of the Republican Party have said that “abortion is murder,” but, until now, they haven’t meant this literally.
No such exception would be allowed by Marco Rubio, Scott Walker, Ted Cruz, Dr. Ben Carson, Rand Paul or Mike Huckabee, according to a report by Thomas B. Edsall of the New York Times.
If you honestly believe that abortion is murder, it is logical to say, as Huckabee did, that friends of a 10-year-old girl in Paraguay who became pregnant after being raped by her step-father has no more right to commit murder than anybody else.
Edsall noted that the top 15 Republican candidates, including Jeb Bush, Chris Christie and Carly Fiorina, all agree that life begins at conception. This sounds strict to me, but Edsall pointed out that, to some of the most powerful anti-abortion groups, it is not enough. To these groups, life begins at fertilization.
The difference is that conception begins when the fertilized egg is implanted in the womb. Most fertilized eggs fail to be implanted.
The importance of this difference is that the “morning after” birth control pill works by preventing implantation of a fertilized egg. Experts disagree on whether IUDs prevent implantation of fertilized eggs. Extremist anti-abortionists think such forms of birth control are the same as abortion.
But if preventing a fertilized egg from being implanted is abortion, then God would be the greatest abortionist of them all.
That’s why so many philosophers, Christian and otherwise, have believed that human life begins with quickening, when the fetus is capable of independent movement within the womb, or when the brain is fully formed, and the unborn child is capable of experiencing pain, or viability, when the baby is fully formed and capable of survival outside the womb,
In my opinion, if you want to reduce the number of abortions, you should reduce the number of unwanted pregnancies. If you want to reduce the number of unwanted pregnancies, you should increase access to knowledge and means of contraception. If you want to do these things, you should support Planned Parenthood.
The Republican Conception of Conception by Thomas B. Edsall for the New York Times. Most Republican voters do not follow the cruel logic I describe. That’s a dilemma for the Republican candidates.
Planned Parenthood Means Fewer Abortions by Michael Specter for The New Yorker.
How False Narratives of Margaret Sanger Are Being Used to Shame Black Women by Imani Gandi for Reproductive Health Reality Check.
Mitch McConnell and the Planned Parenthood Atom Bomb by Ben Domenich for The Federalist [Added 9/3/2015] Evidently the current Republican Congress is not going to try to defund Planned Parenthood.