“Health secretary slams abortion pill ruling as ‘not America’”
When I read this headline, I felt a flicker of hope. For an absurd moment, I thought our health secretary had come to his senses and realized that providing women with pills to kill their babies is ‘not America’—or any other nation in a moral world.
50 years ago, an American health secretary would be as appalled as the vast majority of Americans would be by the notion of aborting unborn babies for virtually any reason, let alone for convenience. “Safe and rare” was a lie in 1974. The lie would laughable today, if it weren’t so damnable.
Clearly, abortion is never safe for unborn children. It was relatively rare when it was done to save a mother’s life, not to save men and women from the life-changing consequences of their sexual freedom. The truth is that the vast majority of unwanted children are aborted to avoid unwanted responsibility.
What about rape and incest victims?
According to a 2004 Guttmacher Institute study, the percentage of women who said they were seeking an abortion after being raped was one percent. Those seeking abortion as a result of incest was .05 percent. The study also found that these numbers haven’t changed appreciably between 1987-2004.
The health secretary is right—providing pregnant women with abortion in a pill to kill their babies is America. Sadly, it’s our world. It’s what we’ve become. We’ve embraced the lie that unwanted children are better off dead.
The health secretary is outraged not because any woman’s health is actually endangered by a judge’s ruling. He’s outraged because our sexual freedom is at stake. In his America, we must be able to end a life in order to preserve a lifestyle.
Instead of focusing on phantom rights to abort unwanted children, our health secretary should safeguard the health of those are routinely—and conveniently—denied their health and freedom.
At first blush, the Respect for Marriage Act seems reasonable and fair—even needful. After all, its decency is in its name. What’s in a name? In this case, everything. When you read the bill, you’ll realize its name smacks of a marketing trick, a Machiavellian ruse.
In truth, the Respect for Marriage Act will federally force respect, not for marriage, but for the redefinition of marriage, created by the Supreme Court’s Obergefell v. Hodges decision legalizing gay marriage .
In their rush to rush to codify gay marriage federally and force states to recognize same-sex marriages, the bill’s backers fundamentally disrespect the institution. Worse, they further fray the tenuous fabric of the family, which will surely hurt children the most.
The Respect for Marriage Act, known as the RFMA, was named and written to assure quick passage before democrats lose the House of Representatives. Its disingenuously clever nomenclature makes it more difficult to vote against. After all, if one does, isn’t he or she disrespecting marriage?
Apparently, 12 republican senators considered this question and chose to support the bill. To be fair, they may actually think the RFMA is fair and needful legislation and that it respects marriage. Does it?
Is marriage respected when one of its most essential functions is removed? If one views marriage as simply a way to seek happiness and not necessarily for procreation and family building, a redefinition makes sense logically, but not practically—or morally.
This is not all the Respect for Marriage Act gets wrong—or right—depending on one’s cultural goals.
The RFMA green lights litigation against virtually anyone who opposes the redefinition of marriage. For example, photographers, cake makers, church leaders, and faith-based nonprofits who refuse to participate in same-sex weddings can be sued despite their conscientious objections.
Concerning nonprofits, those that operate based on traditional marriage values stand to have their tax exempt status revoked for discrimination.
What about states that do not accept any other definition of marriage other than between men and women? When this bill becomes law, they could face federal repercussions because the RFMA requires that all states recognize same-sex marriages regardless of their positions on traditional marriage.
The RFMA also endangers faith-based social-service organizations that work with the federal government. If they challenge provisions of the act in court, the hill to winning their he cases based on religious freedom and free speech will become that much steeper.
Additionally, objections need not be faith-based. A secularist can respect several millennia of precedent for traditional marriage, based on common sense and the complimentary natures of men and women, and consider same-sex marriages far less beneficial to society. Is this disrespect for marriage?
What the RFMA is not
The Respect for Marriage Act is not a codification of Obergefell v. Hodges, in which the Supreme Court invented a constitutional “right” to same-sex marriage—as they did for the “right” to abortion in Roe v. Wade.
Backers of the bill portray it as such in order to ensure smooth sailing through the house and senate. They hold that the Obergefell decision settled the argument. It did not. Many Americans, as with Roe v. Wade and abortion, are not in favor of same-sex marriage.
Because the constitutionality of same-sex marriage is founded on a phantom, the issue isn’t any more settled than the right to abortion was. If it is indeed settled, why the rush? The RFMA is being whisked through congress out of fear that the Supreme Court could overturn Obergefell.
Who will suffer most?
Children. Eons of human history bear witness to the essential importance of traditional family for the healthy development of children. Science, common sense and millennia of experience unequivocally show that children do best with fathers and mothers.
The family is vital to any healthy society. Is it any wonder that crime, drug use, poverty, and now gender confusion—virtually any and all relatively recent ills of American culture—stem from the denigration of the family?
The undeniable truth is that a man and woman, designed and created with complimentary strengths, give children the best shot to grow and develop into healthy, happy adults. All one need do to affirm this self-evident truth is to honestly contrast and compare the health of society from decade to decade.
Sadly, the Respect for Marriage Act is a further slide down the slippery slope. It’s dishonest and destructive. A more apt and respectful name would be the Redefinition of Marriage Act.
No matter its name, if the RFMA becomes law, its provisions will endanger those who hold traditional marriage values and deeply hurt families and children. It’s is simply a misguided attempt to ensure “fairness” based on yet another redefinition of an institution that underpins all healthy societies.
My response to a New York Times December 21, 2021, article about Christian and scientist Katharine Hayhoe in the form of questions for Dr. Hayhoe:
Is it possible that many who identify as Christian aren’t followers of Christ? Could it be that they simply check a box that includes choices like Muslim, Hindu, atheist, agnostic (and others)—and evangelical? If so, why expect God to work through them? Why expect them to manifest the kinds of love by which you judge them?
Is it fair to offer only two distinctions when it comes to Christians and climate change—“climate-change skeptic” and “climate-change denier?”
Both buckets imply that a Christian who doesn’t embrace climate change—as popularly defined—is either skeptical that it exists at all or is skeptical that human activity is to blame for it.
What if a Christian wonders if climate change is intrinsically natural and allows for the possibility that we may be contributing to it to a lesser degree than “climate explainers” claim?
What if a Christian doesn’t think about climate change in terms of his differences with others? What if tribalism plays little or no part in his thinking when it comes to the issue?
What if a Christian ponders the enormity of time and posits that the amount of time with which scientists are studying climate change is a tiny sliver compared to the vastness of time itself?
What if a Christian embraces the notion that to study science is to do so skeptically and that to be a scientist is to be a natural skeptic?
What if a Christian has an aptitude for critical thinking and is technically minded and prefers proving hypotheses (or reading the findings of scientists who do so) rather than simply accepting the words of climate explainers who work closely with politicians and activists?
What if a Christian trusts that God will ultimately redeem his creation and embraces her role as steward of the creation? What if she’s confident that the creation is much more resilient than climate explainers say it is? What if she wonders whether an inflated belief in our ability to irreparably damage the earth is a form of arrogance?
Science or dogma?
Should we, as critically thinking Christians, take pains to interpret scripture with contextual accuracy? As a scientist and Christian, Dr. Hayhoe, shouldn’t you be more careful about interpreting Jesus’ words to his disciples? His command for them (and for us) to love others—neighbors and enemies—is given in other conversations, not in the one you referenced (John 13:35).
What if a Christian doesn’t consider the use of fossil fuels or nuclear power an affront to God and his creation? What if he wants to transition to electric vehicles and other forms of viable alternate energy sources, but sees a rush to green energy happening before viability?
What if a Christian wonders if resistance to truth is also on the side of those who claim to understand climate change? What if climate change is cyclical and mostly naturally caused? Is the question of human causation not open to discussion?
What if a Christian sees arrogance and ignorance on both sides of the argument? What if she’s concerned for the silenced scientific voices who dare not question the explainers and powerful people who back them?
Our fallen world.
Do Christians who do not fit snugly in climate-change denier or climate-change skeptic buckets deserve a seat at the table? Do they deserve denigration as Facebook churchgoers, Fox News watchers and head-in-the-sanders?
Does science allow for honest disagreement and the possibility that so-called climate-change explainers, though intelligent and well-meaning, are simply seeking rather than dispensing truth?
As Christians and non-Christians, shouldn’t we resist labelling others and being swayed by politics while grappling with climate change?
As Christians, why would we doubt God when we see people treating others in less than loving ways? Did Jesus not tell us this would happen? Do we not live in a broken and fallen world? Is there not an adversary prowling like a lion seeking to devour us and others with deception and hatred?
Shouldn’t we as Christians view God by what he says about himself? Shouldn’t we trust him by how he works in our lives? Shouldn’t we love him because he first loved us through his son, Jesus? How can we expect Christians or those who identify as such to be barometers of God’s efficacy or trustworthiness?
How can we claim to embrace scientific truth without embracing the essence of science—healthy skepticism and the humility to admit that we simply don’t yet know enough about climate change—or our broken world?