Perhaps you are familiar with actress and stand-up comedian Jenny Slate. She became known for her stint on Saturday Night Live, but has increased her visibility by starring in roles on various other TV shows such as House of Lies, Parks and Recreation, Bob’s Burgers, and Kroll Show. And recently she starred in a Sundance film called “Obvious Child.”
Obvious Child is a movie about a twenty-something woman who aspires to be a comedian. Her brand of humor revolves around her intimate sex life and is, apparently, quite crude. In the movie, her character, Donna Stern, gets dumped, loses her job and finds herself pregnant from what was meant to be a one night stand – all just in time for Valentine’s day. The story line is about how she handles the adversities in her life – part of which is to deal with the pregnancy by getting a an abortion.
Obviously, having a movie character get an abortion is not a new thing. But apparently the way it is handled in this movie is unique. In fact, Louise Melling, deputy legal director for the American Civil Liberties Union, wrote an opinion piece for the Washington Post praising the portrayal of abortion in this romantic comedy deeming it to be “sympathetic, and funny.” And it seems that this is actually the purpose of the movie – to try and take away any stigma from abortion.
Of course, there is no shortage of help from the cadre of liberal movie critics who also try to make this point for the movie. In addition to Melling’s op ed, New York Daily News reviewer, Joe Neumaier, says the movie deals with this sensitive topic “by using humor rather than standard Hollywood judgments or cliches.” And Peter Travers with Rolling Stone calls this an “abortion movie with jokes.” He goes on to describe it as a great movie because of the sympathetic treatment of abortion.
The truth is, those who hold to a naturalistic worldview (which certainly includes the folks in the ACLU and most people in the movie industry and news media) believe abortion is no big deal. In fact, they see it as a very good thing. They express this by framing their arguments using naturalistic presuppositions. The assumption is, abortion is good because it frees women to make their own choices about what they do with “their own bodies.” In a naturalistic worldview, there is no consideration whatsoever for any other people in the picture – either the father or the child.
When it comes to how to deal with a pregnancy, there actually may be, in certain circumstances, reasons to discount the input of the father (for instance where there is abuse or rape). But there is never an excuse to throw out the life of the preborn baby. And this is what abortion does – it completely dismisses the life of the child. There is no negative thought whatsoever to the idea of killing the baby. Often the argument is made that the preborn child is not even a person.
In naturalistic belief, this is actually a logical argument. Naturalists don’t believe in the existence of a spiritual reality. Thus, a human fetus is nothing more than a piece of tissue to be dealt with in whatever way the mother desires. In other words, a child is not a person until it is born, or in some arguments until even later.
For those of us who place a higher value on human life, the naturalistic argument is grim enough. However, for pro-abortionists, who have already gained the legal right to abortion, that is still not enough. They want to take it a step further and actually enforce the celebration of abortion in the culture. To accomplish that they must destroy anyone who gets in their way. Anyone who is pro-life must be silenced.
Based on Naturalist’s approach to understanding morality, this reaction is also expected. Since, in their view, there is no God or any outside source for a transcendent or objective moral code, all moral judgments are purely based on personal preference. For them, there is no other possibility. Beyond that, enforcing their preference must be based on the law of the jungle. Again, they see no other possibility since the only force able to sway society is the power of powerful people. So in addition to trying to beat down pro-life foes, they also make movies like this one in an attempt to make abortion seem like a good, natural, and even funny event.
So why do Christians even care about this? Why not just let women do what they will “with their own bodies?”
Frankly, I think most Christians don’t have any problem with people doing what they will with their own bodies. Personal responsibility and freedom of conscience are hallmarks of Christian thought. The problem with abortion is that it moves the action beyond the person’s “own body” – to the point that it actually murders another person. Naturalists try to sidestep this issue by refusing to acknowledge the personhood of the preborn baby. But it cannot be done. At the moment of conception, a new baby is already a person.
The reason Christians have a problem with this is that God has revealed to us that human life is particularly sacred. God created human beings as persons “in his own image.” The life that he put into mankind is unique in that it is an expression of his own life and personhood. It is valuable and uniquely special because God made it to be so. In his revelation, he has told us that because of the value of human life, human beings are not to take the life of any innocent human. And preborn babies fall into the category of “innocent human life.”
The reason people who hold a naturalistic worldview position are willing to celebrate abortion is because they don’t view human life as sacred and special. Since they believe all animal life is naturally evolved, they see human life to be no better than any other life form. Beyond that, they put a priority on personal desires above the survival of what they consider to be unwanted body tissue.
At this point, it should be pretty obvious that the naturalistic position and the Christian point of view are at polar opposite ends of the spectrum. So the question becomes: Which belief is true? For Naturalists who do not know Christ, it is impossible to believe that human beings are anything more than natural animals with no more value than any other natural animal. But Christians who have actually entered into a personal relationship with God know better. We are special creations loved by him. As such, it is vital to understand the implications of the wanton killing of innocent human life and stand up against this barbaric practice.
© 2014 Freddy Davis