If you believe in human rights for all, including the unborn, you “don’t want to live in the modern world.” Your position is “extreme” — something we’d expect from “terrorist groups.”
That’s what Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton said last week at a speech in Cleveland where she blasted “out of date, out of touch policies” on abortion. We’re going forward, she said. Not backwards.
Here are four reasons Clinton should apologize for such inflammatory rhetoric.
- She shouldn’t label an opposing position as “extreme” just because she doesn’t agree with it.
The United States is evenly divided between so-called “pro-choice” and “pro-life” lines. Do half of Americans have “extreme” views because they believe in an unborn baby’s right to life? To call a viewpoint “extreme” is a convenient way of dismissing it out of hand without ever dealing with its substance.
- How can she call the Republican position extreme when she belongs to a party that opposes virtually any regulation of abortion at any stage of pregnancy?
The Democratic platform on abortion fits nicely with North Korea and China — who (along with Canada) are the only countries in the world that allow abortion after viability for any reason. Would Clinton label Europe’s abortion regulations as extreme? Take France, Germany, Belgium. There, the abortion cutoff is 12 weeks, at the end of the first trimester.
- Comparing pro-life advocates to terrorist groups like ISIS is not only offensive, it’s silly.
In light of the Planned Parenthood videos, that assertion can easily backfire.
What if a Republican candidate compared abortion advocates to terrorists? ISIS beheads people and shows the severed heads on video, like trophies intended to shock people. ISIS also harvests the organs of its victims in order to fund their terror operations.
Planned Parenthood makes sure that the severed body parts of unborn children remain in freezers and behind closed doors. In the most recent undercover video, Cate Dyer, the CEO of StemExpress recommends warning lab technicians before a severed baby’s head arrives, so they don’t “freak out.”
“They don’t want to know where it comes from,” Dyer says. Better to include just a limb, without a recognizable foot or hand. Otherwise, people may get squeamish about the fact that our society sanctions the killing of a child and the harvesting of its organs.
(Planned Parenthood said the newest video was “extremely heavily edited.” The worse the videos get, the more the adjectives multiply.)
- Enough with the ridiculous “war on women” rhetoric.
Clinton might want to confront Charmaine Yoest, president of Americans United for Life. Or Marjorie Dannenfelser of the Susan B. Anthony List. Or Kristen Day, who heads up Democrats for Life, and Alveda King, niece of Martin Luther King, Jr. who calls for an end to “black genocide.” These pro-life warriors have something in common: They are all women.
Clinton believes it is “pro-woman” to be for unrestricted abortion rights, and “anti-woman” to limit access. This must be news to the majority of women in the United States, who consistently express their support for a ban on late-term abortions. Women are more likely than men to support a ban on abortion at 20 weeks. In other polls, women’s views on abortion mirror that of men’s, although women are more likely than men to say that abortions should be illegal (24 percent compared to 19 percent) in all circumstances.
Clinton’s rhetoric demeans women who disagree with her. Furthermore, her position on abortion deviates from previous generations of feminists, such as Alice Paul, the original architect of the Equal Rights Amendment. She called abortion “the ultimate exploitation of women.”
Today, most U.S. women do not believe they need unfettered access to a life-taking surgical procedure in order to be on equal footing with men. Outside of Planned Parenthood circles, few women believe the highest and most sacred aspect of women’s rights is the choice of a mother to take the life of her unborn child.
The ground is shifting in the abortion debate, and contrary to what she said in her speech, it is Hillary Clinton’s rhetoric that is increasingly “out of touch.”
— by Trevin Wax | RNS
Wax is managing editor of The Gospel Project and author of multiple books, including “Clear Winter Nights: A Journey Into Truth, Doubt and What Comes After.”