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The Conversation

How do we respond to those who have had an abortion and still remain pro-choice? This question was recently posed to me to answer by the Whole Life Committee, part of the And Campaign, as part of a series of responses or "talking points" for difficult conversations that are prone to pop up from time to time between Pro-Life people and folks in the "muddy middle." Often as people who stand for life in our hearts we are caught unaware and can fumble for compassionate yet accurate things to say to a particular query. While some prefer to argue, most of us would rather answer kindly and in humility and not degrade our witness.

I suspect that I was asked to contribute because folks on the Whole Life Committee know how my heart had been changed over the years from Pro-Choice to Pro-Life They know I could speak candidly about this particular question because 20 years ago, the Pro-Life convert was me. Even though I'd heartily identified as a "Christian " since age 12, growing up, I'd had no clue about what "sanctity of life" meant. I knew what "Civil rights" meant because it was the clarion call of my generation. When you long for rights that have been denied you then, you begin to see EVERYTHING as a "right" to be acquired. The "right" to bear arms, vote, have privacy, control your body etc. The quest for "rights" begins to define who you are in your own mind and can become equated with your worth in society. In my case, my abortion felt like a "right" that had been fought for by 'forward' thinking women and consequently extended to me by civil authority. As such, abortion was a "right" I now had access to that I could exercise without penalty.

But, what I didn't know was that "rights" didn't extend to taking human life in the womb.

The right to "choose" life or death was lumped in with other just rights when it shouldn't have been.

I'd often hear people argue for abortion by citing verses in the bible where God sanctioned the taking of life during times of war. Our supposed justification of what we do when we