A new bill in Texas, put forth by Rep. Tony Tinderholt (R) of Arlington would criminalize all abortion, even to the extent of punishment by death. As the Washington Post Reports:
Men and women, young and old, native Texans and immigrants, they rose to ask lawmakers to protect life, describing a “genocide” and foreseeing the arrival of “God’s wrath.”
The act of public atonement they are seeking is passage of a bill that would criminalize abortion without exception, and make it possible to convict women who undergo the procedure of homicide, which can carry the death penalty in Texas. Though it faces steep odds of becoming law, the measure earned a hearing this week amid a larger legislative push in GOP-controlled states to curtail abortion rights, in a direct challenge to Roe v. Wade.
It should not have to be said that this approach to abortion is anything but pro-life.
While the legislation is unlikely to pass, given extensive resistance – including from some pro-life groups – this should stand as a warning to all pro-lifers who actually care about the well-being of the women whose bodies are situated at the center of this debate. There is a danger in the kind of rhetoric that is so frequently, casually tossed, even if it is well-intentioned. Referring to abortion as “murder” leads too easily to this kind of legislation. And framing it as a “holocaust” or “genocide” not-so-subtly equates vulnerable women in difficult situations with the moral monsters of recent history.
Misrepresenting recent bills as permitting or promoting “infanticide” adds to the general atmosphere of inaccuracy and hysteria in which those with a fundamentally good cause in mind – protection of unborn life – end up being the worst transgressors against life’s inherent dignity. We’ve reached the point of radical utilitarianism in which “the end justifies the means,” when it comes to abortion, which is why we were all told to vote for Trump or else the babies get it. Now, the Trump administration is guilty of direct crimes against the sanctity of life and family, and the GOP is enacting policies are likely to increase, not decrease abortion, but we keep hearing the same lies.
The anti-life extremism of a movement that claims to exist in order to defend life needs to be addressed and stopped, before bills like this become the norm instead of the exception.
image credit: pixabay.com/photos/image-desk-woman-office-worried-2834891/