Saturday, March 28, 2009

Why Should Atheists Be Pro-Life?

Why Should Atheists Be Pro-Life?
By Judy Ferris

I am often asked this question. I usually answer, "Why shouldn't atheists be pro-life?"
Nobody questions why non-religious persons fight drug abuse, drunk-driving, rape, poverty, crime, etc. Why should fighting abortion be viewed so differently?
Some people think that unless you believe in God, or more specifically, a God that will punish you in Hell if you do something wrong, then you cannot be made to behave. They apparently believe that atheists must be criminals.
Yet, many non-religious people actively fight crime, violence, and "wrongdoing" for many reasons. We believe in fairness and justice, protection of people's rights, lives and property. Heck, we even register to vote and try to pass laws to govern the behavior of other citizens! I am living proof that a belief in God or religion is not necessary for a person to become involved in the fight against abortion.
In fact, one thing that both the abortion industry and the pro-life movement agree on is that public ignorance about fetal development, abortion methodology and post-abortion complications is necessary if abortion is to remain legal. Ironically, the religious orientation of most pro-lifers may act as the major factor preventing education from taking place.
Faith and TrustOnce upon a time, I was a "pro-choice" woman. I believed in many mythical things back then: that sex could be "free" from any committments or consequences, that legalized abortion was "safe", that "control" over female reproductive functions would lead to equal rights for women. But the myth I held to most dearly was that opposition to abortion was merely religious.
Since I had allowed my first child to be killed by abortion, I wanted to be reassured that I had nothing to feel ashamed or guilty about. Certain women's groups comforted me by calling abortion a woman's "right" - merely a medical procedure. I would literally hold my breath whenever abortion was the topic on television, waiting for religion to be mentioned. The media never let me down. Abortionists angrily complained about the trauma experienced by patients because of pro-life picketers. Abortion-rights activists harassed preachers who spoke up against abortion, accusing them of being insensitive to women.
In a sense I was being repeatedly promised the same thing: as long as I avoided pro-lifers or religion, I would not suffer any post-abortion regrets or grief. I faithfully followed this advice for a decade. As an atheist, I was confident that condemnation of abortion by religious leaders would never bother me.
I gained so much confidence that I could even bring up abortion in conversation or joke about it. I mouthed "pro-choice" slogans as if they were proven truths. What little information about abortion that filtered through my defenses I assumed was propaganda dreamed up by religious fanatics who would even stoop to lying. I perceived the truth about abortion to exist somewhere between bad enough to be a little upsetting (messy, blood) but not so bad as to warrant further investigation. I placed such faith and trust in the providers and defenders of abortion; I believed they were there to help women, to protect women. I was totally unprepared when reality hit.
Seeing The LightBelieving that the fetus was just a "blob of tissue", that pro-lifers were lying about how developed aborted fetuses are, I had no reason to avoid information from sources that were not "anti-abortion". I learned about fetal development when my other children were born. I experienced nightmares, crying spells and suicidal thoughts. I knew these were not caused by the activities or words of pro-lifers or preachers. Was I supposed to be upset with sonogram technicians or childbirth instructors for educating me?
Still, I tried to defend abortion somehow. I didn't want to be called a "right-to-lifer". I fell back on the "choice" slogans about child abuse, rape, women's rights... but could not find any real evidence to back up their assumptions. I even contacted "pro-choice" groups to ask questions. It was made very clear to me that my support of the abortion industry was supposed to be "no questions asked!" They had no answers.
As an atheist, one of the most ironic discoveries I made when I became pro-life was the cultist nature of the followers of choice. To a skeptic like myself, the "pro-choice" movement started to look frighteningly fundamentalist. I started asking questions and was "answered" with slogans. Dissatisfied with slogans, I continued asking questions and was accused of being "anti-choice". To question was taboo; information from pro-lifers was "heresy", and I had become a "heretic".
Non-Religious RationaleTwo major differences between atheists and religious persons are their philosphies regarding the origin of the universe and what happens after death. If you examine the atheist's beliefs, it is easy to understand why they could or should oppose abortion.
Atheists do not believe that the universe was created; they believe that the universe evolved, rather than being planned. "Choicists" believe that "unplanned" life is not worthy of protection. Furthermore, they believe that unplanned-for-lives are doomed to unhappiness, violence, and abuse.
Evidence that humanity has suffered unhappiness, abuse, and violence is easy to find in any history book or just by looking around you now. If the "every child a wanted child" (and if not wanted, destroyed) "prescription" for "curing" child abuse were applied to the whole violent, unplanned universe... well, that sort of "logic" leads directly to advocating for the destruction of the entire human race! in fact, it doesn't take genius (just honesty) to acknowledge that this sort of reasoning is already being employed in targeting certain groups of humans for reduction or elimination (for their own good, of course, to ease their suffering). Does violence exist because the universe is a bastard, without even a "biological", let alone spiritual "father"? The theory of evolution and the unplanned pregnancy equals child abuse theory clash with each other.
Examining afterlife philosophies reveals more inconsistencies between "choicism" and atheism. Religious persons generally believe in life after death either in a heaven or via reincarnation; non-religious persons generally believe in the finality of death or a kind of non-religious reincarnation.
For the atheist who believes that when you die, your life is over, period, the taking of an unborn human's life should be a very serious matter. There will be no comforting of this being by a heavenly father, angels, or relatives after a torturous death; there will be no mere reincarnational transfer. Thousands of times each day unique, never-to-be-again, individual beings have their one and only chance at life terminated without even a trace of "due process".
Unfortunately, many pro-life individuals are keeping the link between religion and opposition to abortion the primary focus in the debate. For some religious pro-lifers, employing non-religious arguments against abortion is sacrilegious. Not only do they see abortion as a sin, but failing to make reference to religion with each pro-life effort is sinful. They are upset and afraid of the idea of atheist or agnostic pro-lifers. They answer questions with scripture regardless of their audience. They pray at pro-life pickets and meetings. In short, they fit the negative, stereotypical way that all pro-lifers are portrayed: as religious zealots trying to "impose morality", mindless puppets directed by pro-life preachers.
Some religious pro-lifers simply need more information. They would use the medical, legal, and scientific facts to argue against abortion, if they knew them. Lacking this information, they are not confident discussing abortion. They worry that issues such as child abuse, rape, and "back-alley butchers" will be brought up. They have not yet heard the well-researched, logical explanations that disprove the popular "pro-choice" reasons for "needing" to keep abortion legal.
I hope to educate others about the facts, confident that they will then oppose legalized contract killing of the unborn once they know the truth. I do not try to "impose morality".
The cold reality is that abortionists are prenatal hitmen, employed to impose morality on innocent unborn humans.

Thursday, March 12, 2009


HERE ARE A COUPLE OF REALLY GREAT COMMENTS ON THIS ARTICLE. I like them because they seem to be from Liberals who are "saddened" by the use of abortion as birth control. Actually, I don't see how a person can be pro-choice and pro-life though.? The thing I would like people to think about is that the issue of abortion has NOTHING to do with religion! A fetus is a living thing. How anyone can pretend it's not is mind boggeling to me. As soon as that embryo has implanted into the mothers womb it should be considered a person. Abortion is just murder. There doesn't have to be a God involved in that fact.

I think the biggest problem the GOP has with this issue is that it cannot separate the idea of being pro-life from the idea of being pro-choice. It is very possible to be both, and I think a lot of the country are both pro-life and pro-choice. I am a Democrat, and while I feel that there are WAY too many abortions performed in this country, I do not think it is something that needs to be made illegal. I am all for educating everyone on the choices they have with their pregnancy (abortion, adoption, keeping it), and I would love to see less people actually choose to have abortions. I look at abortion as a last resort, and am saddened that some use it as their preferred method of birth control. Jackson, Seattle (Sent Thursday, March 12, 2009 12:32 PM)


It always amazes me that the republicans are so worried about life and so "compassionate", but when it comes to providing the social programs so that the "unwanted" child has a decent life, they are dead set against it.

So they are pro-life, but against that life having a fair chance at a equal health care, good education, and a strong future. Chris - IL (Sent Thursday, March 12, 2009 12:39 PM

Friday, March 6, 2009

a response to an MSN article about kids and homework.

Kids and homework. I agree with this essay.

I have a bachelor's degree and also a teaching certificate. My husband has two masters degrees. We definitely feel education is important. That being said. . .

There are so many things we need to do as parents to ensure our children grow up as well-rounded individuals. Education is very important, there is no question about that. But there is a whole world of education beyond what our children need to learn in the classroom. I feel it is important for my children to have opportunities to take music lessons, play sports, do chores around the home (cooking, cleaning, etc. for when they grow up and move out), play with friends and even just hang out and have some down-time. I know I need that. I don't expect it's any different for my children. A child, or adult for that matter, who has a well-rounded life is much more likely to be successful in every aspect of their lives even though they may spend less time in one particular area.

The concern I have had with my four children's homework is that sometimes it is so excessive that getting any of these other priorities accomplished can be next to impossible. Or, if we are in the midst of soccer season, getting homework done is next to impossible. I feel we also need to remember that children, even (if not especially) teenagers, need a lot of sleep, about ten hours a night. My children are in school for about seven hours a day. I feel that is enough book education, unless, of course, they are not doing their work during school hours.

For high school students especially, having five and six hours of homework is ridiculous. The argument of many teachers that this homework is preparing them for college doesn't necessarily work for me either. Even in the thick of my college education I never had 12 - 13 hours of school and homework a day. Just being sent home with busy work is not teaching them to study and learn. Those are skills that need to be taught, not just figured out as we bumble our way through loads of homework.

I feel that homework cuts into the other areas of life that I feel it is so important to teach and train my children in. How can they find out their talents, skills and interests in life if all they do is sit around doing homework? Many of us have careers that draw from many areas of our lives, not just our book education. I feel we need to give our children a chance to learn in all areas and live a balanced life. This is vital to their success, happiness and well-being. And isn't this what we ultimately want for our children?