“For all the progress since 1973, I just know in my heart of hearts that this will be the generation that restores life in America.” These inspiring words were spoken by our very own Vice President Mike Pence at a pro-life luncheon held on February 27th.
Of course, NARAL didn’t miss an opportunity to retort back with their antiquated and overused rhetoric to accuse the Vice President of trying to “normalize” the idea that “women don’t get to … control their own bodies.”
Pence is not trying to normalize anything except the right to be given a chance to live, which we have denied to nearly 60 million children since Roe v. Wade.
These days Pence and other pro-life advocates don’t really have to use slick marketing gimmicks to change people’s minds on abortion when science is pretty much already doing that for us, so Pence may be right—this could be the generation that sees the sanctity of life restored, given Americans’ changing opinions.
A recent Marist Poll on “Americans’ Opinions on Abortions” found that:
- Only 12 percent of Americans think abortion should be available to a woman any time during her pregnancy.
- 56 percent believe abortion is morally wrong.
Now more than ever, Americans are changing the way they feel about abortion and want more restrictions on obtaining an abortion.
When the first oral arguments of the Roe v. Wade case occurred in 1971, the attorney for Jane Roe argued that since obtaining an abortion when the life of the mother was at risk was already legal in the Texas statue (where the original Jane Roe appeal was heard), then it was not the child who was the victim but the mother. She argued further that since there was no acknowledgment of death by the state, it was safe to conclude the baby should be treated as biological waste:
“There is no requirement of – even though the State, in its brief, points out the development of the fetus that in an eight-week period, the same State, does not require any death certificate, or any formalities of birth.
“The product of such a conception would be handled merely as a pathological specimen.”
The “it’s just a clump of tissues” argument has a long history.
What Roe. v Wae couldn’t predict was the advancement of scientific technology capable of detecting the intricate design inherent in the unborn child and the astonishing level of development taking place earlier and earlier in the womb.
The same Marist Poll asked Americans the question of when life begins: 47 percent said “at conception."
Contrast this to what presiding Justice Blackmun wrote in 1973 in the majority opinion in Roe:
“We need not resolve the difficult question of when life begins. When those trained in the respective disciplines of medicine, philosophy, and theology are unable to arrive at any consensus, the judiciary, at this point in the development of man's knowledge, is not in a position to speculate as to the answer.”
There’s no “speculation” anymore. Science, in its respective fields of embryology and bioethics, has given us breakthrough answers. Scientists within the past few years have detected that a bright flash of light erupts when a sperm fuses with an egg, signaling when human life begins.
In addition, we are now seeing that early-stage embryos with abnormalities can still develop into healthy babies if given the chance to live. Thanks to 4D ultrasound technology, we can see an unborn child at 14 weeks respond to the sound of music. Previously, many believed a baby in the womb could not hear music until 26 weeks.
At 20 weeks we can scientifically prove that a baby has developed a mature enough nervous system to feel pain. The Marist Poll indicates that 63 percent of Americans now support a ban on abortion after 20 weeks of pregnancy, and 17 states have already enacted some form of a “Pain-Capable bill” to protect unborn children who are able to feel pain from the brutal abortion methods used at this stage.
Even MSNBC “Morning Joe” host Joe Scarborough recently had to admit: “You are seeing poll numbers move on abortion for banning abortions after 20 weeks.” He went on:
“Why? Because for the past decade, younger Americans have been going in and they have been seeing 3-D imagery where they can look into the womb. If some activist said, ‘Your child is a lump,’ I must tell you, I’ve had four kids, I’ve never once had a doctor go to me, ‘we’ve got your lump, let me show you your lump, look at your lump’s profile.’ This is an example of science, technology changing that is going to change the politics of abortion. This is an issue that culturally is going to change. Americans, younger voters are going to become more conservative on abortion because they see their child very early on in the womb.”
It is a marvel to see science catch up to where the morality of most Americans has always been, and where truth will always stand.
These scientific discoveries are just the tip of the iceberg and will inevitably continue to evolve. Many more Americans may begin to doubt the weight of the words from the seven Roe v. Wade Justices who declared abortion the law of the land when the evidence of unborn life right before their eyes cannot be denied.
Patrina Mosley is Director of Life, Culture and Women's Advocacy for the Family Research Council. She is a former Young Women for America Coordinator for Concerned Women for America. She holds a B.S. in Religion, with a specialization in Biblical Studies and a M.A. in Public Policy from Liberty University and works for a Christian public-policy organization. She and her husband have dedicated their ministry to engaging the culture with the truths of the Gospel.
Editor's Note: This piece was originally published by the Family Research Council.