Saturday, September 3, 2011


A couple of years ago I wrote this as a "mass mailing e-mail" to about 425 folks who had signed up (since then Outlook decided I was spamming and has blocked the sending of these items--oh, well).  It was addressed to President Obama on the occasion of comments he made in the context of his invitation to give the commencement address at the University of Notre Dame in 2009 (this explains the use of 2nd person in my questions).  I offer them in this forum as a way of reflecting on an item in the 9-3-11 Mobile Press-Register (by the Associated Press), reporting that pregnant women who take illegal drugs can be prosecuted for endangerment of a child, provided the woman is carrying a "viable fetus."  This application, along with its terminology, begs many questions--some of them reflected in my remarks below.  I hope they can still generate meaningful dialogue in pursuit of truth. 

1. You support a woman’s right to an abortion. Is this on the basis of a belief that a pregnant woman is not carrying a human life, or on the basis of a belief that that human life is not worthy of protection?

2. In either case, what is the scientific/medical information that leads you to this conclusion?

3. In either case, when do you believe that human life (or human life worthy of protection) does begin, and how scientifically/medically did you determine this?

4. If an unborn child at 8-1/2 months of gestation can be aborted by the mother, what logical barrier is there for not following Prof. Singer of Princeton and thinking that a baby 2 weeks after being born cannot also be “aborted”? The answer must surely involve more than “location”...

5. You have said you are “wrestling” with the issue of life. If the unborn child is not a human life or a life worthy of protection, with what are you are wrestling?

6. If induced (adult) stem cell research is offering such promising results, as opposed to the results of any kind of embryonic stem cell research, why is the Administration reducing funding for such research?

7. If the unborn child is not human life or human life worthy of protection, why express willingness to work to reduce the numbers of abortions?

8. If the unborn child is not human life or human life worthy of protection, why should the slaying of a pregnant mother be regarded in a court of law as a “double homicide”?

These are questions that not only deserve but cry for an answer in honest dialogue.

1 comment:

  1. Well stated. It always seemed so simple to me, what the church teaches. As much protection and respect for EVERY human life, at EVERY stage and age, as humanly possible. These questions are well written. It reminds me of a Jewish friend of mine: the true winning argument can be found in the question. The goal is not to defeat those who feel differently, it is to help them understand.