Can you imagine 73 pre-school children being murdered every day in Hungary? Would such a tragedy only affect parents? It is easy to quickly say no to both questions. But what about children in the womb? Here the response of pro-life and pro-abortion advocates would differ.
According to some, abortion is a social taboo while others say it is a private issue. However, there is a much more serious underlying question: do we consider a foetus a human being? It is a question about life and death. Therefore, it is hard to talk about it without emotions. Still, it is almost the only way in which we should.
Let us start with the most important fact. It is a biological reality that human life begins at conception. Yet, most European legal systems do not protect the lives of foetuses like they do yours or mine because foetuses are not recognized as a human being. But why do they say a foetus not human?
Let us look at their core arguments.
The first argument of pro-abortion activists is that the foetus is not a human because it has no self-consciousness. Because of this, a foetus does not have intrinsic worth and is not deserving of human dignity and the right to life. However, if we accept this view, it leads to severe corresponding problems.
According to this line of argument, a man in a coma who is being kept alive by machines is not actually a human either and therefore he or she can be killed without any moral concerns. Or if we do not consider anyone a person until birth then restrictions are no longer necessary. Consequently, there is nothing wrong with killing a 9-month-old foetus just before birth. This theory has already been put into practice in New York State.
Is that not strange? Almost everyone agrees that as soon as a baby is born, killing him/her would be murder. But many do not have any moral objections to doing the same a few months before birth. It is as if the foetus magically turns from non-human to a human at a certain point of the pregnancy.
The second argument of pro-abortion groups is based on a woman’s right to bodily autonomy. Radical feminists say women should decide on their child’s life because this way they can control their own bodies.
“My body is my choice” is the familiar refrain. But it is time to correct it: our body is my choice. The foetus is not a part of the mother’s body. I do not recall that when I was expecting my daughter my family members, friends, or even my doctor asking about the wellbeing of my body.
Instead everyone asked: how is the baby? Alternatively, how are you? When you talk to a pregnant woman, no-one actually talks as if mother and baby are the same body.
According to pro-abortion logic, the foetus only becomes worthy of life and of society’s protection if the mother says yes to having a child. The dad cannot do anything about it.
Consequently, if the mother says no to the little one for any reason then his/her life is of no interest. It is exceedingly difficult to protect a baby’s life if his/her mother does not want to also.
Since their word is decisive, it is worth examining what factors influence the decisions of mothers. A recent American study found that most of the time women do not really want to have an abortion but they still do it because of one or more coercive factors.
The study shows that:
I. 64 per cent of women had their abortion because of external pressure or possible coercion
II. 79 per cent of women were not informed of alternative options such as adoption
III. 84 per cent of them felt that they did not receive adequate medical information about the risks and possible psychological consequences of terminating their child
If I were a radical feminist, this is what I would be concerned with.
This is the point where pro-abortion advocates raise the question: fine, but what if the mother’s life is in danger? Or what about cases where the woman was raped? How about if the foetus is suffering from a severe disability or terminal illness?
They build the strongest pillars of their arguments on these truly tragic situations. But this position collapses quickly when faced with reality as less than 3 per cent of abortions occur due to the heart-breaking reasons mentioned above. In Hungary, women indicate a severe life crisis to justify their decision in 97 per cent of cases. Many of them are indeed in a state of spiritual crisis, but in practice healthy women decide against the life of their child based on financial or relationship reasons.
Also, no matter how difficult and horrible the situations we mention are, we can all easily realize: they do not change the fact that their innocent child cannot be blamed for them.
Since 1956, 44 per cent of conceived children in Hungary, equal to more than 6 million foetuses have been aborted while the number of children born during the same period was barely over 7 million. This trend has improved in Hungary, but every 4th child is still aborted by his or her mother. That equals 73 abortions a day. Without change, it is going to be very difficult to achieve demographic recovery.
We all think differently about issues regarding politics, economics or worldview. But abortion is not a matter of opinion. Whether someone is human is not determined by your opinion. We, who have been born know this to be the truth.