By Leslie Miller | Catholic News Service
HERNDON, Va. (CNS) — In her June 25 presentation “When They Say … You Say,” Olivia Gans Turner described five main categories of challenges pro-lifers hear.
Turner, the director of American Victims of Abortion, a program of the National Right to Life Committee, based in Alexandria, Virginia, was one of dozens of speakers at the 50th annual National Right to Life convention in Herndon June 25-26.
Here are excerpts of her suggested responses from a presentation that has become a pro-life classic:
• “It’s not a person, it’s a blob of tissue.”
Science tells us that the new life a mother carries is a completely separate and fully new human being, Turner said. She added that by the time most abortions can be performed, the baby already has a beating heart and identifiable brain waves separate from the mother. This human being has the inalienable right to life and deserves full protection under the law.
• “A woman has the right to control her own body.”
Every mother is faced with profound decisions to make for herself and her child, but “they are two people,” Turner said, adding a woman has no right to kill her baby. Mothers facing difficult pregnancies require accurate and compassionate information about their baby’s development as well as practical support, available through more than 3,000 helping centers around the nation.
• “Every child should be a wanted child” and other social arguments.
Poverty, abusive situations and other social problems exist and must be addressed, but “we don’t solve these problems by killing people,” Turner said.
• “If you make abortion illegal, there will be ‘back alley’ abortions.”
The numbers often used by abortion supporters to back their claims are fabrications, Turner said, mostly made up by the pro-abortion lobby, as admitted by Dr. Bernard Nathanson, founder of NARAL. Turner said despite new drugs, the basic methodology of abortion has not changed much in 40 years. Legalizing abortion just gave abortionists “the ability to hang their shingle on the front door and stop using the back alley,” she said.
• Hard cases: Rape, incest, fetal abnormality.
We don’t cure disease by killing the person who has the disease. If a baby with an abnormality is going to die an hour after being born, “it’s a gross and horrible attitude to say ‘kill it and try again,” Turner said, adding that helping people process fear is the biggest part of this category. Also, perinatal hospice programs now exist in many localities.