Have you noticed the increasing overuse of the word political lately? The trend evidences itself in everyday discussions while overshadowing the basic tenets of right and wrong.
It has become normal and acceptable to disparage others by categorizing their speech, ideas and attitudes as “politically correct.” For example, if you and I point out a presidential candidate’s behavior as reprehensible, we are being, guess what? Politically correct. Such a candidate is lauded for his courage and ingenuousness in refusing to behave according to our rigid, politically driven expectations.
When did we reduce the concept of treating others with respect and dignity as a mere political ploy? What has happened to us?
In today’s landscape, it is common to push aside controversial subjects labeling them “political.” One such example is the subject of developing human beings in the womb.
I recently watched an award winning documentary titled Hush. It is a fascinating piece of journalistic work – a thorough search for the truth about health risks associated with abortion.
I learned a great deal from the film. Clarity erased haziness about important questions like, “Does abortion really increase the risk of breast cancer? And, if so, why and how?”
Why do those who support abortion adamantly proclaim that a link between abortion and breast cancer has been proven false while pro-lifers insist the link exists? A pro-choice, feminist filmmaker Punam Kumar Gill wanted the same answers. And she took the time to get to the bottom of it.
My respect for her grew as I watched her doggedly connecting the dots, listening intently and drilling into glossy, hardened veneers of long-held claims.
But what is true? How were these decisions reached? When and Where? By whom? On what research was it based?
Her questions led her into a world of lies, cover-ups and shocking disregard for the wellbeing of women.
“If it’s really about a woman’s health, her reproductive health, and her ability to make a choice, then why are they lying about the risks?” she reflected. “It’s, therefore, not about her health. It’s not about her making a choice if it’s not an informed choice.”
Gill voiced her intentions to put aside presuppositions in a desire to get the black and white answers. As with each of us, her value system is engrained into her psyche. So in reality, it is difficult for any of us to actually fulfill such an extraordinary endeavor. We all see everything in life through the lens we call a “worldview.”
In the end, she still described herself as pro-choice. Her worldview seemed to enable her to focus unequivocally on the dignity of the mother while disregarding the questions related to the life of the unborn.
“We are not talking about pro-life and pro-choice anymore,” she said. “We are talking about very serious claims – like breast cancer, premature birth and psychological damage. And we should be able to discuss these openly. We are now talking about critical health risks related to abortion that may affect the lives of millions of women.”
In the view of many, the terms “pro-life” and “pro-choice” only identify polarizing political ideologies: “Should a woman have the right to abortion or not?”
But, we are really talking about more than politics. We are talking about the conviction behind the positions held. We are talking about two lives. We’re talking about right and wrong.
Gill’s desire to present women with honest answers about concealed risks to their health, directly related to abortion, is noble. A search for the truth about abortion’s effect on innocent, developing persons in the womb is unquestionably no less noble. Nor is the plea for their protection.