* A column I wrote in last week’s Zoutpansberger newspaper in Makhado, South Africa.
The greatness of a culture is determined by what it loves and hates most. If the sordid abortion advertisements that litter our town are any indication, our culture isn’t worth much.
The newspapers this past week spoke of the carnage on the road due to Easter weekend. We mourn the dozens who passed away. But what of the carnage in today’s abortion mills, where hundreds and thousands of children in South Africa are killed each year? Where is the public outrage on behalf of the unborn from a town where the majority claims to be Christian and Muslim?
What is worse, such killings are advertised in bright colors—papers by the thousands slapped on every stop sign and light post. Sleazy advertising for a sleazy profession.
The promise is that the procedure will be “pain free”, but being pain free doesn’t change the fact that abortion kills children. We don’t admire a man who chooses not to torture his wife, but instead kills her painlessly in her sleep. The tragedy remains.
These young girls are guaranteed “body cleaning”, as though what is vacuumed out is just tissue. She’s told she has the right to do this because the blob is only a part of her body, as though a loaf of bread is a part of the oven since it is baked inside.
I respect the doctors in this town who refuse to perform abortions, who swear by the Hippocratic Oath, and who refuse to hide behind aliases like “Dr. Vicky” and “Dr. Eddie.”
We ease our conscious by calling it a fetus, for the B-word (baby) would make us cringe. But the child inside is a baby no matter what we call it. “A rose by any other name would smell as sweet”, the poet said. A baby by any other name is still a baby. Everyone knows that to break a chicken egg before it hatches is to kill the chick. What is it, then, to perform an abortion?
Some may argue: “It is the law of the land, get over it.” But I challenge you to think differently.
(1) Unjust laws should be overturned. We learned this with apartheid. Or did we?
(2) Speak compassionately with those considering an abortion. There are alternatives.
(3) When you see such an advertisement, throw it in the trash, and let your children see you do it.
(4) For the pastors and community leaders among us, you must not hold back the truth on this matter, regardless if there is not consensus in your assembly. Teach in such a way to create a consensus.