Letter to the editor

Photo courtesy of Matt Holtmeyer
Matt Holtmeyer

On March 15, an opinion article was published in The Gateway by the opinion editor in which she expressed her disapproval of the Iowa Legislature’s vote to pass the “Heartbeat Bill,” which would ban abortions after the first detectable heartbeat.

Within just the first three sentences of her piece, she disingenuously painted a picture of pregnant rape victims and drug addicts being forced into motherhood by some tyrannical governing leviathan that doesn’t even possess the compassion to allow those unfit to be parents to seek a legal abortion.

Of course, to the many individuals who have spent any amount of time in the anti-abortion movement, this argument is nothing new. Abortion advocates routinely utilize the most horrific, heart-wrenching circumstances, regardless of rarity, to make an emotional, irrational appeal for unlimited abortion access.

Indeed, according to the Guttemacher Institute, a group dedicated to preserving abortion rights, less than two percent of abortions are attributed to rape or incest. As someone who believes that abortion should be illegal in all cases, I would be very much willing to agree to a compromise that would limit abortions to cases of rape, incest, drug abuse, and so on. This would mean approximately 95 percent of abortion procedures would be outlawed, saving countless lives, and abortion advocates could sleep well at night knowing that rape victims still had the option to terminate their pregnancies.

This compromise is a utopian fantasy, as we all know. While pro-abortion activists are certainly interested in protecting access to abortions in the aforementioned situations, they are far more concerned with eliminating any and all restrictions on the procedure. They utilize rape and incest as rhetorical weapons in their war for abortion on demand.

In my view, the vast majority of points made on either side of the abortion issue are insignificant and unoriginal, including those made in the editor’s piece. Most relevant conversations miss root of the discussion entirely. Really, the debate is as simple as any, and should only include one single question:

Is the unborn child a living human being with unalienable rights?

If the answer to this question is “no,” than abortion is morally inconsequential and the procedure should be as accessible as a hair transplant or a root canal. If the answer is “yes,” however, then abortion should be illegal in any and all circumstances, period.

Very few people would disagree with the notion that no individual in a free society should possess the legal authority to take the life of another, innocent individual, regardless of how horrific a particular circumstance might be. Humanity does not include varying degrees, obviously, so if it is concluded that the unborn child is, in fact, a living human being, that unborn child is protected by the exact same rights that defend all people from one another, and our laws should unquestionably reflect that.