Don’t ‘Christianize’ abortion with advertisements
Just a few weeks ago a new “reproductive justice” group in Oklahoma, the Oklahoma Call for Reproductive Justice, started advertising on Facebook. Out of curiosity, I checked their website out, and came away deeply disturbed.
Oklahomans take their religious faith seriously. According to Pew Research, nearly 80 percent of Oklahomans are Christians, and from personal experience, being born and raised here, it is an important part of daily life. Oklahoma is also a deeply pro-life state, public polling from Sooner Poll, an Oklahoma City-based polling organization, suggests that
nearly 80 percent of voters call themselves pro-life. The data, unsurprisingly, suggests there is a lot of overlap.
It seems that The Oklahoma Call for Reproductive Justice (OCRJ) has picked up on the fact that they would have a difficult time convincing Oklahomans to turn their backs on the unborn without dressing up their advocacy of abortion in Christian rhetoric. They seem to be attempting to do just that.
On its website, it argues that the ending of a life before birth is something, “God supports,” and in which God “guides the faithful.” OCRJ's suggestion that the killing of the unborn can be justified under Christian teachings perhaps is echoing a sentiment recently expressed by Chelsea Clinton, who declared that it would be “un-Christian” to revert back to a time before the judicial legalization of abortions in the United States.
To any student of history these attempts to “Christianize” abortion should be profoundly alarming. Christianity is a faith that teaches compassion and justice, especially for the weakest and most vulnerable members of society. However, the name of Christianity has frequently been perverted and then used to commit terrible injustices against the defenseless.
Native Americans, such as myself, are keenly aware of terrible injustices that have been carried out under the banner of a perverted form of Christianity. The dehumanization of indigenous people here and elsewhere was all too often justified under the name of Christianity. This dehumanization allowed a litany of injustices — from the Trail of Tears to the frequent tearing away of children from parents to brutal massacres. The stain of chattel slavery was also frequently defended under the banner of Christianity.
Fredrick Douglass, a Christian, put it eloquently, when he said, “I love the pure, peaceable, and impartial Christianity of Christ: I therefore hate the corrupt, slaveholding, women-whipping, cradle-plundering, partial and hypocritical Christianity.” Christians in America must guard against repeating such past mistakes. We must not allow Christianity to be used to rationalize lethal violence against the most vulnerable members of the human community today: unborn children.
Chance Fletcher, a Princeton University graduate and a student at Harvard Law School, is from Oolagah.