I can picture vividly this van that used to drive around Houston when I was a kid that had pictures of disgusting aborted babies on this side of it with something like “Abortion is Murder” scrawled across it. I have a staunch opinion on abortion but I can’t say I always did. Just like my political views, I didn’t know WHAT I thought about abortion when I was growing up. The problem was that I was also honestly not sure what the owners of that van were thinking with their larger than life grotesque pictures of slaughtered baby parts and angry intimidating rhetoric. It churns my stomach and only makes me think of how persecuted abortive mothers must have felt being accosted by that image while they were just trying to drive to work in the morning or pick up their kid from daycare after a long day. Is that really what Jesus would do? I grew up Catholic in a proudly pro-life household, but it wasn’t my mother’s voice or a beautiful newborn baby or even a homily that ran through my head when I heard whispers of girls at school having abortion procedures. All I thought of was that disgusting van and it’s cruel, damning message. It wasn’t until I became a libertarian that I was introduced to the pro-life movement from a different angle. It was probably Austin Petersen (who ran for President in 2016) that first explained the prolife movement to me as a human rights issue from the in utero human’s perspective. He explains that no human should infringe the liberty of another and without life we cannot have liberty. Even in our Declaration of Independence, life precedes liberty. (https://humandefense.com/why-libertarians-should-be-pro-life/) So, when I walked into the Unplanned movie this weekend, I was wondering whether I would experience a grim reaper van approach or a “life liberty and pursuit of happiness” one. I’m very glad to report that I found the later.
Having seen lots of YouTube videos of speeches and interviews with Abby Johnson, I was not surprised that she managed to have her story written in a way that speaks to my Libertarian motherhood like no one else’s I’ve heard. Her pivot point was not a result of being worn down by protesters or being graced with an epiphany by God. It was because she gained new information, processed it and was welcomed to the pro-life movement by her husband who had been quietly waiting there for her. Here is her story.
Abby Johnson’s Bryan, Texas Planned Parenthood Clinic had a visiting abortion doctor who wanted to talk to the clinicians about the safety of performing an ultrasound-guided abortion instead of the blind surgical digging that PP regularly performs which obviously runs a MUCH higher risk of perforating the patient’s uterus, which is a complication depicted in the film with the young girl whose daddy brings her in for her abortion. Her uterus is accidentally perforated by during the blind surgical abortion and she luckily starts bleeding before she leaves the clinic so they can save her life. Her uterus is repaired before the anesthesia wears off so she won’t remember it happening. Because PP does not want to spend the extra 3-4 minutes on an ultrasound-guided surgical abortion, they instead will do an ultrasound to confirm the size of the in utero human (to determine the cost of the procedure) and then they wheel that cart away and poke around with the vacuum tube until they think they have extracted all of the parts. Afterward, someone in the POC (Products of Conception, or it’s slang, “Pieces of Children”) room has to logistically reassemble those parts to be sure that they got everything. The Ultrasound-Guided Abortion was being presented to her clinic that day and she had never seen it done this way before. Abby was under the impression that a fetus this young could not feel pain so this is where the new information came in. When the probe got close to the baby, she recognized for the first time that he was actively trying to get away from the pointy object. With nowhere to go, the child is dismembered and sucked away into the vacuum tube and as that happens the doctor says “Beam me up, Scottie” (that’s a Star Trek reference for you non-trekies). The lumps of tissue are then neatly collected into a container that the grim reaper van could only dream of envisioning. So… New information. She processes it and SHAZAM, there’s her pivot point.
THAT is where it’s at!! People coming to their own conclusion about the sanctity of life. You can yell at someone all day and make laws that make their choices illegal, but until they have a pivot point you are just a bully and they will never respect your opinion. That is why I have made it my mission to help people to CHOOSE to protect the life of all humans once they have been involuntarily created in their mother’s womb. Information is power. As Abby Johnson explains to us, the people shouting angrily from the fences outside just made patients run to the safety of the Planned Parenthood clinic but it was the people peacefully hoping and praying for grace that actually caused patients to remain mothers. The Unplanned Movie reminded this libertarian mom that you catch more bees with honey than you can with a grim reaper van.
Here’s a link to my idea for helping your kids and even adults to understand the sanctity of life through celebrating their own conception on their “LifeDay”. https://boujache.com/2019/03/29/raise-a-pro-life-child/