Tuesday, June 22, 2010

That Ought To Be A Crime

In 2004, Congress passed the Unborn Victims of Violence Act. This bill established that if a child in utero is injured or killed during the commission of certain federal crimes of violence, then the assailant may be charged with a second offense on behalf of the second victim, the unborn child. Under this law, if the attack on Mrs. Keeler had been a federal crime, Mr. Keeler could have been prosecuted for a homicide of the baby in the womb.

As of 2004, twenty-nine states had passed "fetal homicide" laws (including California), making crimes like the Keeler assault illegal against the unborn child, in addition to the assault on the mother. No state or federal court has ever found that any of these laws conflict with Roe v. Wade or a woman's right to choose. And yet NARAL, Planned Parenthood, and the ACLU all sought to defeat this law. 163 people in the House voted against this bill and 38 Senators.

Here is an e-mail Senator John Kerry wrote to justify his vote. "This legislation elevates the legal status of a zygote, an embryo and a fetus by treating the 'child in utero' as a human being separate from the mother regardless of its stage of development. No knowledge of the pregnancy or intent to cause harm is necessary for prosecution. Under the legislation, women carrying pregnancies are exempt from prosecution, as are the medical professionals who perform abortions or provide emergency medical treatment."

"Although this legislation exempts performing abortions from prosecution, this bill would clearly impact a woman's right to choose to terminate her pregnancy, as that right is set forth in Roe v. Wade. I believe that an attack on a pregnant woman should carry increased penalties. However, legislation granting a fetus the same legal status in all stages of development as a human being is not the appropriate response. I have serious concerns about this legislation because the law cannot simultaneously provide that a fetus is a human being and protect the right of the mother to choose to terminate her pregnancy. Therefore, I do not support the Unborn Victims of Violence Act."

So the ideological lines are drawn. I do not see how anyone can say this statute infringes women's rights, or their liberty, or their privacy. If anything it protects those things from assault, often male assault. And yet feminists and liberals are hostile to this law. They fought for years to stop this act, a statute protecting a pregnant woman's unborn baby from a crime of violence. Why such hostility?

It flows from their absolutist belief that to recognize the humanity of an unborn infant would undercut Roe v. Wade. In a way, they're kinda right. Ideologically it undercuts Roe. It puts a lie to the claim that there is no live baby in the womb for us to protect (or to worry about).

Roe relies upon the dehumanization of the unborn all the way until birth. Stripping babies of their humanity is the foundation of the opinion. It is this brutal aspect of Roe that outrages pro-lifers the most. And liberals defend this aspect of the opinion tooth and nail. Even as they shrug their shoulders at a violent attack on a woman and the murder of her baby. Oh sure, they want enhanced penalties for bruises around her rib cage. Not for any dead baby, because there can be no such thing.

If you love a pregnant mom, if she loves her baby, if everyone is happy, and that happiness is ripped apart by violent attack, how can you not be outraged by that? To dismiss this crime, as liberals do, is appalling.

I find this ideology bewildering and scary. I can see how some people might dehumanize an other, and say they are not like us. But this is not an other. This is how all of humanity reproduces. Even a pagan would be outraged if you attacked his woman and killed a wanted child. He would put your head on a stick. Where is the feeling? If you have decided to keep your child--some of you liberals clearly have--do you not feel love for this child? Do you not say "baby" in your private conversations? Do you not go to the obstetrician and hope all is well? Isn't violent assault on a pregnant woman, and her baby, something that is outrageous?

Your ideology causes you to do and say things that you know is wrong. Your votes cannot possibly describe how you feel about a wanted child in the womb. You are denying that you want to protect that child and keep her safe. Your public position is a lie, a blatant lie, that you know is a lie. And we know it too.

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