Is Abortion a Tragedy?

Christine Scheller over at the Huffington Post wrote an op-ed today on whether or not abortion is really a tragedy. She recounts her own unplanned pregnancy (that she did not terminate) and the pregnancies of her friends who did terminate. She expresses the thought that while her son’s suicide was a tragedy, it didn’t strike her that abortion was a tragedy; after all, while women express regret, the emotional burden a woman feels after an abortion – even if she regrets it – is nothing compared to the loss of a husband or a child.

But then Scheller makes an excellent point:

When I think about how tragic my son’s death is, I’m reminded that I would much rather live with the anguish it causes me than envision a life in which I never knew him. Abortion is a tragedy in and of itself, regardless of whether or not we, as individuals or as a society, feel that it is so.

This is an extremely potent statement, one that rings with quite a bit of truth. Too often the abortion debate is focused solely on the subjective elements of an abortion. We focus on the mother’s feelings, on the burden the child forces the mother to face, the emotional attachment of the mother, etc. Truthfully, it is time we ignore the mother’s emotional burdens or even fiscal burdens when discussing the morality of abortion.

The above sentence sound quite calloused and cold, but consider the following: Would we consider the mother’s emotional state and/or fiscal state if she chose to “humanely” end the life of her infant? What if her infant had a severe disability that would cause the infant to rely on perpetual aid? In such cases we wouldn’t consider the emotional or fiscal state of the mother. We’d still view what she did as wrong; even if we had sympathy we still wouldn’t condone her actions.

The fact is that abortion is a tragedy. It is the taking of an innocent human life. What makes it an even greater tragedy (other than the loss of life) is that humanity is trivialized in the act of abortion and that such trivialization is sanctioned by the government.

Abortion is a tragedy in every sense of the word, whether we acknowledge it or not. A human life is snuffed out for the sake of convenience; what worse oppression is there? Even those deeply oppressed and even tortured still have life. Only the greatest of tyrannies would wipe out innocent civilians for the sake of convenience. If such governments are tragic, then so much more is abortion.