January/February, 1998 Volume XII Number 10
The dawning of a new pro-life activism
by Curt Beseda
On October 4, 1997, a new chapter of the pro-life movement began -- one that will save the lives of many unborn children and bless many families. When over a million men gathered together to participate in Promise Keepers 'million man march" in Washington, D.C., they were greeted by a group of about 35 pro-lifers associated with Advocates for Life Ministries and the American Coalition for Life Activists who offered these men non-abrasive brochures about abortifacient birth controls.
This christened the beginning of a new pro-life activism. In this fledgling, ground-breaking effort, over 75,000 brochures were distributed. This seed, cast on good ground, can only yield good fruit -- profoundly good fruit. Those men who allow the truth about abortifacient birth control to gain ascendancy will have their personal lives, their marriages, and their families refounded on better ground. As these men eschew methods of "birth control" that actually "work" by causing abortions at the implantation stage of the unborn's life, their concepts of sex, marriage, family life, and indeed manhood are also challenged and transformed.
For single men, a new and compelling reason to remain "chaste according to their station in life" is advanced. For some married men, it will instigate recourse to methods of birth control that are truly and exclusively contraceptive in nature. Such will no longer risk conceiving and then having their children "blindly" aborted. And other men and their spouses will respond in an even more all-encompassing manner as they embrace a fuller dimension of what marriage really means; either as they practice natural family planning in cooperation with their spouses or, in an act of total faith and surrender, they open their marriage and family to be blessed by as many children as God wills.
But many other people and things will be affected as the Christian church breaks with a mutually reinforced silence about abortifacient birth control. On the personal, inter-relational level, ministries to help those who have used abortifacient birth controls to find forgiveness and healing from feelings of guilt and grief will be needed. Wise, just, firm, and yet profoundly compassionate counseling and support will be called for to cope with the tensions that arise in both marital and non-marital relationships as those who embrace and fulfill their individual responsibilities toward their children and "potential children" also struggle to continue to love spouses and others who have not yet ascended to these same choices.
The ramifications that will arise as men and women act on the truth about abortifacient birth control will extend to other areas as well. In particular, those who work in pharmaceutics, i.e., those who prepare and distribute prescription drugs, will be profoundly challenged and affected. If one could not in good conscience cooperate in the manufacture and distribution of Zyclon B gas in Nazi Germany, one also cannot be complicit in the manufacturing and distribution of abortifacients.
Obviously doctors, nurses, and pharmacists, in particular, face an impending crisis -- one that they have not yet honestly addressed. (The assertion that, for instance, it is ethical to allow the usage of the pill that works primarily to suppress ovulation -- based upon the intent of the user -- is simply lethal self-deception. Certainly none of the professionals involved would subject themselves or others to anywhere near the same degree of risk that the use of these abortifacients hazard on the unborn children who are conceived roughly 10% of the time when ovulation fails to be suppressed. But it should also be pointed out how tremendous is the pressure coming from society to avert such considerations, especially when support from Christian churches, theologians, and pastors is wholly lacking)
A new consciousness regarding the true nature of heretofore mislabeled "contraceptives" will also impact society in significant ways. How can a true Christian continue to simply shrug any longer at "in-school" clinics that dispense abortifacients to children without their parents' consent or knowledge, or to ignore American policies and programs relating to population control in foreign (especially Third World) countries? Christian parents informed with the truth regarding "birth control" pills, the IUD, etc., will have new and more compelling reasons to remove their children from today's public schools. Similarly, Christian citizens will have more comprehensive concerns for human life when they go to the polls and when they address their elected officials. In every area, the effects can only be to save at least some human lives and to regain something of the true and full humanity now lost to us.
Spreading and responding to the truth about abortifacient birth control will have deep and wide reaching implications -- just some of which I have touched on. It will involve many people in many ways, and constitutes a new pro-life activism. For a frustrated and withdrawn anti-abortion movement, this is a break from self-deception -- from all-to-culpable ignorance -- and a break through the wall of mutually-reinforcing silence (Pastor Smith down the street doesn't talk about this and neither do I.) This provides not just a new reason to carry on but a genuine hope for the future. Indeed, until the Christian Church adequately addresses and repents of the silent, massive slaughter of innocent children by their own members, how can it honestly hope to provide the salt and light that this decaying society so badly needs?
We have just passed through the most joyous and blest time of the year -- the Christmas season. Refreshed through the celebration of the birth of a cooing, crying, cuddling infant, Who almost 2,000 years ago lay swaddled in a Bethlehem stable, can we now open our hearts and lend our hands to protect and welcome those infants who, for their first time, might coo, cry, and cuddle in days not far ahead?
Curtis Beseda is a recently-released Prisoner of Christ who served 12 years in federal prisons for deconstructing an abortuary in the State of Washington.