Recently by Laurence M. Vance: Am I Being Unfair to the Republican Liberty Caucus?
“Out of the same mouth proceedeth blessing and cursing. My brethren, these things ought not so to be. Doth a fountain send forth at the same place sweet water and bitter? Can the fig tree, my brethren, bear olive berries? either a vine, figs? so can no fountain both yield salt water and fresh.” (James 3:10-12).
Pro-lifers are dedicated to the idea that God values all human life, they are committed to educating women about the dangers to their physical and emotional health if they undergo abortions, they are relentless in pointing out the horrors of abortion – and they are some of the most bloodthirsty warmongers on the planet.
Beginning in 1984, the Sunday in January closest to January 22 has been designed by many pro-life and religious organizations as Sanctity of Human Life Sunday. This is designed to coincide with the anniversary of the infamous Roe v. Wade Supreme Court decision in 1973 that overrode most state abortion statutes and effectively made abortion a fundamental constitutional right.
Every year on Sanctity of Human Life Sunday churches of all denominations observe this day with special sermons, prayers, and presentations, testimonies from former abortionists, recognition of pro-life organizations, denunciations of pro-choice politicians, Planned Parenthood, and the Roe v. Wadedecision, calls for legislation to restrict abortion, and distribution of anti-abortion literature.
As both a Christian and a steadfast opponent of abortion (see my articles “For Whom Would Jesus Vote?” and “Is Ron Paul Wrong on Abortion?” and “The Pro-Life Assault on Ron Paul and the Constitution“), I sympathize with the pro-life cause. But I go much further than the typical pro-lifer. I don’t think abortion is okay after the third trimester; that is, I believe in the right to life for everyone – including adults and foreigners.
How many churches on the recent Sanctity of Human Life Sunday mentioned the right to life of countless numbers of Iraqis and Afghans who have been killed by American bombs and bullets in unjust wars instigated by the United States? How many churches mentioned the right to life of U.S. soldiers who have died in vain and for a lie in senseless foreign wars? If the pro-lifers in churches that observed Sanctity of Human Life Sunday care about innocent children then surely they mentioned children in Iraq and Afghanistan who have lost their parents because of the U.S. waging war on their countries, children born with birth defects due to the U.S. military using depleted uranium, and children in Iraq killed by brutal U.S. sanctions? Surely they mentioned the orphaned and emotionally scarred children of dead and injured U.S. soldiers?
Although some churches may have mentioned these things, I suspect that the number is rather small or, in the case of most evangelical churches, very insignificant. And if it be argued that the churches that observed Sanctity of Human Life Sunday should be excused because the day is just about abortion then what about the rest of the year? Do not adults have the same right to life as unborn children? Do not foreigners who are not a threat to this country have the same right to life as American babies? Do not U.S. soldiers have the same right to life that other Americans have?
But in some churches it is even worse. Not only is no mention ever made of these things, the U.S. wars in Iraq and Afghanistan are defended and celebrated. Although they may call themselves evangelical churches, they are warvangelical churches. They are churches that worship God and venerate the institution of the military; they are churches that preach Christ and promote warmongering Republican politicians. They are pro-lifers for mass murder.
It is only natural that most pro-lifers love Republican politicians. At the Family Research Council’s Values Voter Summit held in Washington DC this past September, Rep. Mike Pence (R-IN) was the top choice of conservative activists. This same group named abortion as the top issue they were concerned about. Pence was also the top pick for vice president.
The German Nazis fought for the fatherland. The Soviet Red Army fought for the motherland. Mike Pence wants Americans to fight for the homeland. He “supported creation of the new Department of Homeland Security, the largest reorganization of the government since the beginning of the Cold War.” Because of the Department of Homeland Security, “our ability to defend the homeland is more effective, efficient and organized.” Pence is a committed supporter of the bogus war on terror. He even repeats the ridiculous canard that “we must take the fight to the terrorists overseas so we don’t have to face them here at home.”
The runner up to Pence in the Values Voters straw poll was the former preacher Mike Huckabee, who won the top spot last year. Huckabee not only supported the sending of more troops to their death in Iraq, he actually maintained that we should not withdraw from Iraq because “we are winning.” This advocate of perpetual war in the Middle East had only one criticism for Bush regarding his handling of the war in Iraq: he was too timid and not sufficiently bloodthirsty.
Pence and Huckabee are no different from DeMint, Romney, Gingrich, Giuliani, McCain, Graham, Palin, and Santourm – they are all ardent supporters of war, empire, and police statism. Yet, any one of these individuals would get the support of most evangelicals as long as they played the pro-life card. Once a Republican candidate passes a pro-life litmus test (applied to just American babies), nothing else about them seems to matter. They could call for bombing Iran, Pakistan, or Yemen back to the Stone Age and it wouldn’t change anything.
Why are pro-lifers so indifferent to, and in some cases so defensive of, war, militarism, and nationalism? I think the main reason is ignorance. Ignorance of the Republican Party. Ignorance of U.S. foreign policy. Ignorance of history. Ignorance of the military. Ignorance of the Bible they profess to believe. This is especially true if all one does is listen to SRN News on radio, watch Fox News on television, and read news by the American Family Association on the Internet. The importance of LewRockwell.com must here be mentioned. I have lost count of the number of Christians that have written me about how LRC has been instrumental in changing their thinking.
Pro-lifers should be just as concerned about their government sanctioning the killing of foreigners on the battlefield in an unjust war as they are about their government sanctioning the killing of babies in the womb in an abortion.
It is hypocrisy in the highest degree to talk about the sanctity of life and the evils of abortion and then turn around and show contempt for, or indifference to, the lives of adults and foreigners.
Out of the same mouth proceedeth blessing and cursing. Pro-lifers, these things ought not so to be.
January 24, 2011
Laurence M. Vance [send him mail] writes from central Florida. He is the author of Christianity and War and Other Essays Against the Warfare State and The Revolution that Wasn’t. His newest book is Rethinking the Good War. Visit his website.
Copyright © 2011 by LewRockwell.com. Permission to reprint in whole or in part is gladly granted, provided full credit is given.