Posted on January 17, 2001
Human Weeds and Witches
Abortion advocates in their own little worlds
Next Monday marks the twenty-eighth anniversary of Roe v. Wade. It's a time for defenders of the unborn to gather in Washington to demonstrate their numbers, and petition their political representatives. But it's also a time for the anti-abortion movement to take a step back and reevaluate its tactical approach to the whole conflict.
Up until now, the anti-abortion side has been winning the battle of facts, while the "pro-choice" or "pro-abortion rights" side has been winning the battle of images. This only stands to reason, since so many of the people who control the images we see are squarely in the pro-abortion camp; nevertheless, abortion foes have ceded this ground far too readily. The pro-abortion movement, despite holding the dominant viewpoint among the news and pop media, is vulnerable to a broadside attack on the image front, and for one simple reason. These people are flippin' berserk.
Of course, that kind of intemperate language is frowned upon these days. In this case, though, it's accurate ... so why should right-to-life activists, routinely maligned as toothless, snakehandling, trigger-happy chicken molesters, be at all hesitant to hurl more accurate invective at the opposition?
The most persuasive argument from the pro-abortion side has been that those who are undecided wouldn't want to become like those people, the pro-life "extremists." The undecideds are discouraged from even examining the issue, because the "mainstream" position is that it's none of their business. Caring enough to learn the biological and constitutional facts of the issue would place them "outside the mainstream." That is to say, they would be uncool.
Of course it would be preferable if the debate were held on a higher plane than that, but the unfortunate fact is that it's not. It has been foolish of us, then, to resist pointing out to the public that the pro-abortion movement consists of a collection of geeks, misfits and lip-diddlers unparalleled in political circles (with the possible exception of the animal-rights movement, but many of those are the same people anyway.)
Every political cause has its fringe elements, but the pro-abortion side is loony to the core. There's no better example of this than its epicenter, the Planned Parenthood Federation of America.
He's no regular Joe
The nation's leading "family planning" organization decided to put on a show for the kids last fall, at a parade in Eugene, Oregon. Its contribution to the festivities included its new mascot, an enormous smiling sperm, whom they have cleverly named "Joe Sperm." Lest you accuse the folks at the PPFA of civic irresponsibility, note that Joe Sperm brought with him several giant condoms and birth control pills. He was also accompanied by some people in sperm costumes, who were chasing other people dressed as eggs. Evidently, whoever orchestrated the display was a good feminist, because the eggs were shunning the sperm's advances.
Mind you, this wasn't an isolated, bizarre action taken by a lone, eccentric activist. This required the participation of an entire cast. You can't go just anywhere and find people who are willing to do something so banana-brained. For instance, it would be hypothetically possible to put on a sperm parade on behalf of the right-to-life movement. You could dramatize the creation of human life by having a sperm and egg followed directly by a strolling embryo. The trouble, however, is that you couldn't find any participants. There will probably be somewhere between 120,000 and 150,000 people at this year's March for Life, and out of that whole crowd, you'd be hard pressed to find anybody willing to put on a sperm costume in public. For the PPFA and like-minded organizations to find such people is easy, because their movement is crawling with them.
Despite Planned Parenthood's neck-deep involvement in the lucrative abortion industry, its members insist that they actually want to prevent abortion, by preventing pregnancy in the first place. Hence their slogan, "Want to say no to Joe?" The idea is for Joe Sperm to be perpetually frustrated, by pills, condoms, and fleeing eggs. Actually, if you take a good look at Joe, he does sort of look like the Charlie Tuna of microbiology.
Why, then, is Mr. Sperm so obviously modeled after Joe Camel. If ads showing Joe Camel enjoying a cigarette are supposed to encourage kids to do the same, then what is it that Joe Sperm is encouraging them to enjoy? Rather than thwart Joe Sperm's exploits, why not resist creating him in the first place? Because at Planned Parenthood, that is not considered a feasible option.
This kind of sex-peddling is the standard mode of operations of "family planning" organizations. By promoting "safe sex" to minors, they are encouraging kids who weren't having sex to start having it, and those who were to have it more often. Then, if something goes amiss, Planned Parenthood will be there, offering to provide its -- wink, wink -- services.
Obviously, part of the sales pitch is that kids should want to have sex because it's naughty, just like those wacky scamps at the PPFA. Recently, in another of their Disneyish pranks, those mischievous family-planners began distributing condoms disguised as smiley-faced lollipops. Just imagine all the tee-heeing that must have gone on at the brainstorming session for that one.
Anyone who has trouble believing that such a "mainstream" organization could be so irresponsible knows nothing of its founder, Margaret Sanger. A pioneer in the birth control movement, Ms. Sanger was an outspoken advocate and practitioner of extramarital sex. This was among her more inoffensive viewpoints.
A snapdragon among "human weeds"
Sanger was the driving force behind the American eugenics movement of the early twentieth century, with her plans for mass sterilization of "genetically inferior races," and for rounding up mentally and physically handicapped people into work camps. She foreshadowed today's incarnation of her organization when she said, "the most merciful thing that the large family does to one of its infant members is to kill it."
Aside from being unambiguously racist, Sanger also detested Catholics and Jews. As if her writings didn't adequately underscore those points, she infamously spoke before a women's division of the Ku Klux Klan in 1929. Too bad C-Span didn't exist in those days. If her normal mode of speaking was such that she often referred to whole categories of people as "human weeds," she must have really been something when she loosened up in the company of the KKK.
Margaret Sanger's dementia has characterized Planned Parenthood to this day. As another demonstration of its endless delirium, this organization showed the world its idea of charity by sending abortion suction machines to war-torn Kosovo, as part of the "reproductive health kits" distributed by the United Nations. A watchdog group called the Population Research Institute discovered that the kits often displaced badly needed supplies from emergency shipments.
NOW rises to the level of a patootie
This hypnotic devotion to abortion has also overtaken Planned Parenthood's close allies in the feminist movement. As a result, they've become groupies of Bill Clinton, a man to whom women are little more than something with which to wipe his mouth after eating. After years of insisting that women don't lie about sexual harassment, feminists like Gloria Steinem, Betty Friedan, and Eleanor Smeal were quick to dismiss and often insult women who leveled accusations against their man.
All of a sudden, feminists were giving the kinds of excuses which they'd previously considered to be insidiously sexist. Paula Jones wouldn't have been in that hotel room if she didn't want it. Kathleen Willey's lips may have said no, but her eyes said yes. If Juanita Broaddrick were telling the truth, she'd have come forward sooner.
What passed for a scathing rebuke of Clinton finally came from NOW president Patricia Ireland, who, during the impeachment hearings, called him "a horse's patootie" That's not exactly NOW's usual description of a man who uses his secretary to facilitate his perverted trysts with an intern. Ireland explained her permissive attitude, however, when she continued, "...but you have to consider the totality of his presidency."
Hmmm ... let's see. President Clinton has been totally crude and threatening toward women, totally abusive of his power over female employees, totally unfaithful to his wife, and totally committed to abortion on demand. Sure enough, that works out to a net positive to NOW and the other major feminist organizations.
It's not unexpected that the feminists would sell their souls for abortion, but what's telling is that they've done it so instinctively, never recoiling in horror and lashing out at Clinton before stopping to think what it means to the abortion cause. It came as no surprise to them that when they got their man in the White House, the most pro-abortion president we've ever had, he would prove to be a vulgar, abusive pervert -- and possibly even a rapist. Nor are they surprised that Jabba the Smut, a.k.a., Larry Flynt, has become one of Bill Clinton's political operatives.
Pigs for choice
When it comes to abortion, feminists have an unspoken agreement with their natural enemies. They may like to refer to abortion foes as "anti-woman," but the reality is that nearly every real pig and real misogynist in America is avidly pro-abortion: from Flynt to Clinton, to Hugh Hefner, to Norman Mailer, to Howard Stern, and on and on. Abortion is one area where women who hate men and men who hate women are in perfect agreement. Isn't bipartisanship wonderful?
Norman Mailer once stated flatly during an interview that abortion is killing. He nevertheless defended the act, by pensively adding, "but then, life is about killing." What a convenient philosophy for a wife stabber to embrace. (The novelist knifed the second of his six wives, though not fatally, in 1960. That didn't stop Gloria Steinem from encouraging him to run for mayor of New York, nine years later.) Since Mailer surely believed this pronouncement of his to be sufficiently deep, he must have been unbearably smug when he asserted the following:
"Abortion, finally, is a religious matter, and the assumption that God wants every one of his children to be born is a very large assumption. What if God is more complex? And what if God is in league sufficiently with the devil so that some children are conceived that are diabolical? And who would have a better sense of that than the woman who conceived that child?" Diabolical fetuses? It sounds like he's watched those It's Alive movies a few too many times.
Who knew that the grand poobah of the He-Man Woman-Haters' Club believed in such a concept as women's intuition, let alone trusted it to impose preemptive capital punishment on those yet unborn?
The good die young
While Mailer believes that fetuses should be killed because they're evil, there are others who believe that they should be killed because they are good. One of these is Ginette Paris, a French feminist author who proclaims herself to be a witch. In 1992, Paris penned an eloquent hallucination called The Sacrament of Abortion, in which she obsessively compares abortion to the Greek myth of Iphigenia.
According to Paris' perception of things, a woman considering an abortion becomes the goddess Artemis (perhaps better known by her Roman title, Diana the Huntress). The witch writes that, "Artemis, who personifies respect for animal life, accepts the necessity of the hunt. ... In most Goddess religions a similar reasoning is applied to the fetus and the newborn. It is morally acceptable that a woman who gives life may also destroy life under certain circumstances." How relativistic can you get? Give life, destroy, whatever.
According to the myth, Iphigenia was the daughter of Agamemnon, whom Artemis sought to punish for offending her. By calming the winds, Artemis paralyzed Agamemnon's fleet so that it could not proceed to Troy. When she demanded the sacrifice of Iphigenia in exchange for its passage, Agamemnon reluctantly conceded.
"The story of Artemis claiming Iphigenia as a sacrifice can be told and understood in more than one way," Paris explains, "...[I]n one, Iphigenia is a victim, offered in sacrifice on the alter of Artemis; in the other Iphigenia becomes a heroine, and sacrifice takes on a different meaning. Since abortion is a kind of sacrifice, I believe an exploration of this myth may open up fresh avenues of thought." So an unborn child (or even a born one, according to "Goddess religions") becomes a hero by being killed -- sort of like being a Klingon warrior.
For those who are not persuaded by Paris' heroic dead fetus theory, she offers this blanket rebuttal, "It is not immoral to choose abortion; it is simply another kind of morality, a pagan one."
In case anyone has trouble believing that the views of a French witch are representative of the pro-abortion movement at large, they are corroborated in part by K.B. Welton's 1987 book, Abortion Is Not a Sin: A New-Age Look at an Age-Old Problem. The pages of this book are rife with the usual pro-abortion twittery: comparing human fetuses to chicken eggs, issuing grim warnings of overpopulation, straining to convince himself that Jesus Christ was pro-abortion, etc. At one point in Chapter One, however, Welton does offer a variation of Paris' concept of the heroic fetal sacrifice.
In a section under the heading, "If the fetus could speak, what would it say?" the author confidently answers that question. Here is a sampling of the musings of Welton's suicidal fetus, advising its mother:
"Hey, I don't want to go where I'm not wanted" ... "I don't want to be a burden" ... "If you don't care enough to do the very best for me, forget it" ... "I would not like to be an 'accident' that was forced on somebody" ... "Don't ruin your life on my account, there's plenty of time ahead of you" ... "I don't want to think that my mother sacrificed her own life for mine" ... "I want to be wanted, and have my parents want me and be able to provide for me. Why else would I come? To hurt them? What good does that do me?"
But wait! There's more! Welton's fetus actually believes it will return to life as its mother's next baby, sort of like a prenatal Shirley MacLaine.
"I'll gladly wait for the right time and circumstances" ... " Have me when your life is in order and you are ready, not when you just happen to get it on in the back seat of a car" ... "I want the best deal I can get, I'll wait, thank you" ... "Take your time. There is no rush. I have all the time in the world." (emphais added)
Such demented rants, coming from people not directly involved in abortion, can be more than a little amusing; not so, when it comes from the abortionist himself. Dr. Warren Hern is a third-trimester abortion specialist, and a frequent source for news stories regarding abortion-related legislation. He was also the subject of a chilling profile written by Dave Shiflett for The Weekly Standard in 1996.
Shiflett's introduction of Hern as "spooky as hell" seems like an awkward understatement by the time he finishes excerpting his subject's 1984 book, Abortion Practice, and selecting quotes from some of his more outlandish interviews.
Hern's rationalization of abortion, which, tragically, is not an unpopular one, is to dehumanize humanity. One would expect him to compare unborn children to parasites (which, of course, he does), but then he extends this sub-vermin status to the entire human race. The esteemed "health care provider" once chiseled this philosophical gem: "The idea that the human species is a cancer on the planet is a powerful metaphor that may help explain reality and predict events."
Since Hern has convinced himself that he is helping to cure the planet of cancer, that means that his means of doing that, however grisly, must be good. No wonder he relishes it so. Here's how he describes an abortion procedure in his book: "The sensations of dismemberment flow through the forceps like an electric current." If there's anybody in the world who shouldn't derive such pleasure from his work, it's Dr. Warren Hern.
Pro-abortion activists, frustrated by inconvenient facts, have opted out of reality, and instead created a galaxy of tiny alternative worlds, some of them inhabited by only a single person. In one world, fetuses are diabolical. In another world, they are noble and selfless. In still another, they are eloquent, melancholy and suicidal. Where Dr. Hern comes from, they are not even an animal life form, but only a symptom of a deadly disease.
Far from being in the mainstream, these people aren't even on the main planet. It's no wonder that they are willing to believe Justice Harry Blackmun's assurance that a right to abortion exists in the Constitution, but that only he and his colleagues could see it. To people who live in fear of devil babies, daydream about fetuses reciting Hamlet, and walk around town dressed as sperm, an invisible amendment doesn't seem crazy at all.
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