Friday, January 23, 2009

An objectively wrong decision

Well, it looked a lot like politics as usual today with President Obama's signing of an Executive Order that reversed what is known as the Mexico City Policy. It is called this because President Reagan announced it in a speech he gave in 1984 at the U.N. International Conference on Population held in Mexico City. The Mexico City policy stipulates that no monies given by the U.S. government to foreign NGOs can be used to fund abortions or abortion-related services. The rule also prevents foreign NGOs that receive U.S. money from presenting abortion as a possibility to the women they seek to serve. Hence, the policy is known by proponents of abortion-on-demand as "the global gag rule".

It is important to point out that the policy does not extend to NGOs based in the United States because such a denial has been determined to be unconstitutional. The Mexico City policy was in force from 1984 until the first few days of the first Clinton Administration, when then-President Clinton overturned it by another Executive Order issued on 22 January 1993, the twentieth anniversary of the Supreme Court's unfortunate Roe vs. Wade decision. The Mexico City policy was once again put into effect with yet another Executive Order signed by Pres. Bush on 22 January 2001.

I gave a hearty guffaw to the idea put forward by a reporter for NPR, which she no doubt received from the White House Press Office, that by not reversing the Mexico City policy on the anniversary of Roe vs. Wade, Pres. Obama sought to de-politicize the issue. Wow! That is spin at its worst and least creative and most disingenuous. I agree with Ashley Horne from Focus on the Family that it is not possible to "reduce abortions by channelling more money to the abortion industry". What do we offer the world? Abortion on demand! Who does this offend? All traditional cultures. The gap widens. Besides, the right to life is not a political issue, it is not an ethical issue, it is a fundamental moral issue.

David Gibson, who I respect a great deal, but with whom I disagree on this issue, offers some insights worthy of consideration on his blog Pontifications. I will take the bait and answer the question he poses in the title of his post: Obama's Mexico City repeal is not a pro-life policy, just as not repealing it on the anniversary of Roe vs. Wade does nothing to de-politicize the issue. It is the kind of logic that asserts, counter-intuitively and contra the facts that abortions went up during the Bush Administration, when the truth is that from the administration of George H.W. Bush on, abortions in the U.S. have been on the decline, including during both Clinton Administrations. I fact-checked this during the campaign early last fall. Given all this, I stand by Ms. Horne's assertion.

Gibson's post puts in me mind of a sign that hung on the door of the office of one of my logic professors: Gambling is immoral; say no to Paschal's wager- Torture is immoral; say no to torturing your conscience. I am sorry to sloganeer. If nothing else, I offer this as diakonia to the truth of the axiom that is never permissible to do evil that good may come of it.

1 comment:

  1. Deacon Scott, I completely agree with you. Keep speaking out on this issue.

    The imposition of our "abortion mentality" on third world nations offends them. The injustice to women and children in promoting abortion is inexcusable.

    The bottom line, as you have said, is that it is a moral issue based on the medical fact that the unborn are vulnerable human beings, as are women in difficult pregnancies. President Obama's decision is objectively morally wrong. Both women and unborn children deserve our help and protection.

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