It’s overwhelmingly clear that life is far from sacred, or even “precious” according to the Bible. Throughout scripture (and history to this day), God has killed (and daily kills) billions with apparently no regard for their “sanctity.” Scriptures view life as a “flower that fades,” “a vapor that appears for a little while and then vanishes away,” “dust to dust”, etc. The genocidal flood, the earth swallowing people, bears sent to kill children, people commanded by God to kill thousands upon thousands–men, women, children, livestock, even one’s own family members. Jesus said of Judas, “it would be better if he’d never been born,” and to his disciples, “unless a man hate his life…he is not worthy of me.” I like to think (if I gave these narratives any credence at all) that these murders and devaluings of life were all done to mitigate suffering. But at minimal we can know that the God of the scriptures does not share the modern Christian church’s obsession with “life.” (or marriage)
My wife and I have never had an abortion, but I deeply value the freedom to do so if the crisis arose. Through birth control, we have preempted countless offspring (and continue to do so). I sometimes “miss” those people and wonder what they would’ve been like. And deciding not to conceive them was, and is, the most responsible way for us to steward the life-creating powers we wield. I even shudder with horror sometimes at how presumptuous it was of us to bring the four we have into this world. Ours is a world of anomalous magic and beauty amid relentless difficulty and pain. So much suffering and joy hang in the balance every second of every day they’re alive. Life is hard. Abortion is hard–a difficult, painful decision. But it is the lesser of several evils sometimes, and must remain an option if we aspire to be a humane people. No one is “pro-abortion;” it’s a lose-lose and extremely painful for many involved but I think it’s a win for the fetus and the future of the mother.
And while I regard life as “precious”, any person with a conscious knows to put a suffering horse down. It’s strange how we don’t bring that same compassion to human beings. There is a point in which suffering can escalate and eclipse the “preciousness”–a point where death (or abortion) is the more empathic option. Sometimes that point is pre-existence; sometimes that point is post-conception, at any point in one’s lifespan. A civilized society operating in wisdom and compassion needs the freedom to decide that. This honesty is afforded to me as a non-theist. Thus I must agree somewhat with the video’s claim that “you can’t be a Christian and be pro-choice.” Abortion is only “playing God” if you believe in a personal God, which Christians obviously do. And I believe that the only thing that can detach a person from reality far enough to make the thought of outlawing abortion conceivable is religion.