Our convictions, when lived out, will cost us.
On the day I am drafting this essay, I have dinner plans with my friend, a Canadian physician. No doubt our conversation tonight will quickly turn to the recent United States Supreme Court decision, Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health. No doubt we will each vigorously defend our opposing opinions about abortion.
My friend, who claims no religious faith, strongly defends a woman’s right to choose abortion. She will talk to me—as she has throughout the 11 years I’ve lived in Canada—about married women who confirm unwanted pregnancies in the ER.
Sometimes, my friend tells me, these patients worry about the economic hardship another child will impose upon the family. Sometimes, having already endured one difficult, even life-threatening pregnancy, they can’t conceive of risking a second (or third or fourth). Sometimes these mothers are already caring for aging parents or a child with special needs and simply can’t imagine assuming responsibility for one more life.
“Many of these women don’t want to have abortions, but they can’t conceive of the alternative,” she will tell me, pleading for me to understand their predicaments. I will listen sympathetically to the stories my friend tells and acknowledge the real fears of her patients.
Whatever a woman’s ethical views on abortion, she may end her pregnancy because she cannot script a story in which both she and the baby flourish. As Lifeway Research reports, nearly 16 percent of all abortions are sought by evangelical Christians, many of whom might see it as a necessary evil and feel like they have no choice.
Whatever the legal status of abortion, our continuous battle is to conceive of a world where abortion isn’t …