Last week, a story about a New Mexico teen mom made my stomach hurt. A Fox News article showed a gut-wrenching video of a young girl slinging a trash bag into a dumpster. At first glance, it seemed to be nothing more than garbage. But as time went on, individuals around the dumpster began to hear cries and found a baby wrapped in the black plastic.
Swaddled in nothing more than a towel and wrapped in two garbage bags, a baby (with umbilical cord still attached) was thrown into a New Mexico dumpster. Yep. You read that right. A newborn was tossed out of its mother’s car and disposed of like yesterday’s leftovers. Amazingly, after spending hours in 37-degree weather, the baby survived and appears to be doing well now.
As that video reeled, all I could think was how can a mother throw her baby in the dumpster? Better yet, how could anyone do such a thing to another living being? But the truth of the matter is that something just as bad happens every day, and they call it – abortion.
An article by Breitbart revealed that in 2021, there were 42.6 million abortions performed around the globe. But it gets worse. They also included other worldwide causes of death. They are as follows:
8.2 million – cancer
5 million – smoking
3.5 million – COVID
1.7 million – HIV/AIDs
1.3 million – traffic fatalities
1 million – suicide.
In one year, abortion is the number one killer worldwide. Before working at AFA, I knew very little about abortion other than it was wrong. I would have looked at that number and said, “Wow. That’s a lot, but there’s nothing I can do about it.”
Until last year, when I read What to Say When by Shawn Carney and Steve Karlen. As the CEO (Carney) and campaign manager (Karlen) for 40 Days for Life, Carney and Karlen wrote this book specifically for those of us saying that similar thing – “I can’t do anything about it.”
When in reality, that’s just not true.
The ministry 40 Days for Life has been a leader in pro-life advocacy. They operate through prayer, peaceful vigils, and fasting outside abortion facilities. Since 2004, they have seen 19,518 babies’ lives saved, 222 abortion workers quit (including Abby Johnson), and 114 facilities close their doors.
Actually, it was Carney’s office that Abby Johnson walked through when she left Planned Parenthood. They have seen God do mighty things through their ministry. In an interview for The Stand print, I was able to talk to Carney about his new book.
“We don’t have an argument problem,” said Carney. “We sometimes have a confidence problem when [abortion] comes up.”
And he’s right. We lack confidence.
As with many other issues, it’s easier to buy into the lies instead of share the truth. Below, are a few excuses I’ve heard paired with what I learned from Carney.
They have the science to back them up.
“To support abortion, you have to live in 1973 science,” Carney continued. “When Roe v. Wade legalized abortion in our country, we didn't know a lot that we do know now. Science has caught up to the basic reality we know in our guts – life begins at conception.
“The other thing that has changed is abortion advocates have gotten more aggressive and louder as science contradicted their claims. … As science has shown the miracle that is life, abortion advocates haven’t addressed that, because they can’t. They’ve chosen to get louder and prouder.”
People’s minds are made up and we can’t do anything about that.
“We are made of hearts, minds, and souls. We can be changed and converted,” said Carney. “C.S. Lewis said, ‘The first real step to change is repentance.’ We need to know that.
“In the abortion issue, there is an exodus out of the abortion industry by the workers. There is a wave of women who have had an abortion and have laid on that table. And, now regret it. They lead the March for Life. The pro-life movement is a movement of converts and that doesn’t happen just by standing by and allowing our culture to kill 2,500 babies every single day. It has changed by lovingly showing the truth. No one in their heart ultimately wants to wound or harm a baby. We can simply point that out by addressing many different topics and doing so in love.”
I don’t know anyone who would have an abortion so it’s best for me not to get involved.
“We don’t have 200 abortions in our country,” Carney explained. “Every year, we have a million, which means we all encounter somebody who has either had an abortion, is considering abortion, or may have an abortion in the future. We must speak up and we must do so well.”
Those three points alone helped me understand why it’s important to join in and speak about abortion, and to do so respectfully. Life is worth fighting for. If we don’t stand up for the unborn, who will? It’s time to speak.
What to Say When is available for purchase HERE.