Friday, January 27, 2006

"Abort Fort"

by Kyle Michaelis
Abort Fort. Enough said. Ring it from the mountaintops (or the highest point along the prairie).

Here's the latest press release from the Nebraska Republican Party's website.
Congressman Jeff Fortenberry addressed thousands at the National March for Life. Following are Congressman Fortenberry's remarks:

"Good afternoon. It is such an honor to be with you today to peacefully gather and celebrate the beautiful gift of life. I am particularly encouraged by the many young people here. Despite the culture of death that rages around you, you courageously challenge the nation's leadership -- especially the impoverished decisions of the Supreme Court -- showing the world that we can be a country of life giving love.

Together we say abortion is a fundamental injustice against women and their unborn children -- that abortion has caused a deep wound in the soul of our country, resulting in untold grief and violence....

We say that women deserve better, especially those who feel coerced into abortion. For abortion is so often a decision brought on by emotional and physical abandonment. And what is the result? An unborn child dies. A woman is left scarred. A man escapes his responsibility. And the abortion industry profits from this pain.

The beautiful thing about the pro-life community is that we offer hope. We pray, we plead to our society: Please do not make the choice for abortion. Please do not go down that road. You deserve so much better.

And yet even if someone makes the tragic decision for abortion, we still say we support you and we love you. We will help you heal. Our voices are the voices of hope and compassion....

Thank you all for your sacrifice. Thank you for your courage. And thank you for your wonderful dedication to our message of hope and healing. Together we will rebuild our society with a true respect for women--and the beautiful gift of life."

Abort Fort - 2006. Maybe not the most tasteful response ever, but between these comments and all the "Support Fort" sloganeering in the 2004 1st District Congressional race it's just too golden an opportunity to pass up. I'm thinking bumper stickers, buttons, t-shirts...and I'm sure my design team could put together one heck of a graphic to go along with it.

Honestly, I take very seriously the dueling conceptions of morality and freedom - both, not one against the other - at the heart of the abortion issue. Still, it is a speech like Fortenberry's above, so much a triumph of rhetoric over reason, that lowers the terms of the debate and has gotten the nation in this sad stalemate benefitting neither women, children, nor society as a whole.

America's is not a culture of death no matter the hundreds of billions of dollars we spend on our military every year. What exactly does it mean for women to "deserve better" than being able to make their own life and health choices? Is this some sort of Orwellian "slavery is freedom"-proposition? I thought so.

Finally, while I have great respect and sympathy for the actual outreach and education efforts coordinated by the Pro-life/Anti-abortion community, why do they have so little faith in their message that they would choose to give up their principled pleading - please do not make the choice for abortion - in favor of legislation that takes that choice away, making less of our morality and a woman's humanity?

Of course, if you really believe this is genocide orchestrated by an imagined "abortion-industrial complex" rather than the complicated moral dilemma faced by real women and understandably wrestled with in any open society, then these are nonsense questions to you. In that case, Fortenberry's doctrinaire approach should be right up your alley (perhaps I should say, "back-alley"). But such is not the American way and does not reflect the true feelings of the Amerian public.

Pro-life is a beautiful message and a better ideal - one I only wish more people would truly live by - but, by itself, it makes for bad and injust law when so twisted and simplistic as the view offered by Fortenberry and his like.

No, I'll take no pleasure in it, but I think I'd better get to registering before someone else beats me to it. Abrasive and insulting - particularly with Fortenberry the new father of a 7-week-old baby - it's nevertheless a message he deserves to hear....a reminder that his religion does not trump other's rights and that women will not be trampled and constrained under his paternalistic idea of what's best for them.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Kyle, that's totally wicked, evil, and deserving of our respect. Republicans are using Christians on abortion, but will never do anything because they raise so much money and cause so much distraction with the issue. Congressman Abort'nbury has only one issue----money for Jeff. The only thing real about him is the wig.

Steve H.

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Repugs only care about pregnancy and birth until the baby is born. After that, the kid and family are on their own. They couldn't care less after that point.

Complete hypocrisy, and a wonderful political hot topic for Republicans that gives and gives every year, because they always talk about it but never actually do anything about it. Good strategy for keeping the less intelligent or informed of society to keep voting for them.

Blogger Knightn said...

oh Fort. I hope his wife gets him a gift certificate to a real barber for Valentine's Day.

Blogger rew said...

"Repugs only care about pregnancy and birth until the baby is born. After that, the kid and family are on their own. They couldn't care less after that point."

It's the difference between pro-life and pro-birth. Unfortunately, most of those speaking out against abortion fall into the latter category.


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