Choice vs. Compulsion: America's War Over a False Binary
Pro-life and pro-choice is like producing a fight between oil and water. These two do not mix, they never have and they never will.
Life is not comparable to yin, and choice to yang. Is the opposite of human life in the womb, giving a woman the right to decide on whether or not she chooses the responsibilities and physical tolls of motherhood and giving birth?
This debate does not pin those who favor life and those who favor death against one and other, though that is what it has been made to seem. Those who support pro-choice do not endorse the death of humanity. They are not sadists. They do not endorse violence, murder, and ceaseless killing. They are however endorsing the dignity of decision and the reality of free will.
All human life must be preserved. This is undoubtedly true. And on the pro-life side they are in favor of protecting the innocent, the unborn children who are killed through abortion. They stand forward promoting themselves as protectors of human life and human dignity. And yes, this is an admirable and respectable stance.
God has a plan and image for all of his creation, even those in the womb. He does not want them to die. He does not support the assisted death of those who he has loved and set aside a place for in his grand schema of creation.
It is also true that God does not want us to be captives. Our creator made us out of love to return to him in love. In a relationship with God, there is a horizontal and vertical paradigm. He loves us unceasingly and will do so until the end of time â€“ he initiates the relationship. It is our free response that matters; our decision to love and engage in relationship with God is what perpetuates us as believers.
Free will in essence is the crux of this decision. Fear and force do not compel us to live. I do not know a loving God that forces anything out of us. It is all within our choice, our decision to come to him freely and lovingly.
That being said, what gives humanity the right to compel a single woman, who was raped, beaten and abused the binding legality of having to keep her child?
It is death. Abortion is murder. But as in all heinous crimes it is in the choice of the actor to make their decisions. She is culpable. Not you, and not I. We stand on our own valor and our own decisions when we dwell at the pearly gates.
One may say that we need to stand firm and promote the truth, the values of the Gospel. And we shall continue to do so. We can tell women that they are taking the life of a child of God. We can tell them that they are making a decision that ought to be out of their hands. But ultimately, we cannot control what they choose to do with their own livelihood.
I refuse to be castigated into a false binary of choosing life or choosing choice, because once humanity is denied the right of choice, then what do we live for?
Is it wrong for someone to say that they respect human life, that they know that that child is alive and well inside of you, yet that the choice is yours because God gave you that choice? I will be upset, crushed when a woman chooses to abort. But I will not force a woman to see what I see, to believe what I believe. This decapitates the beauty in a genuine relationship with our creator who will continually be waiting for us to turn to him freely, lovingly, with an open heart and open mind. The choice stands not to be yours, but hers. You are on the yoke of your actions and influence. Support the women who need your care and compassion. Don’t trivialize them any longer by making them out to be cynical marauders against the cause of life. Too much time will be wasted by you trying to play the righteous man, force-feeding a religion that becomes harder and harder for some to ingest upon every spoonful. Stop condemning those who are piloting their own destiny. Stop pretending like you know what is best for an individual with their own life story and their own belief system.
For it was in the Garden of Eden where God made man and woman. He knew of the decision they would make to eat the fruit, to succumb to the temptation of Satan. But he acted out of love to give them the chance, the benefit of the doubt. He gave them choice. And think about at whose bedside Jesus would dwell.