By Rebecca Richmond, Executive Director
The tea cups went down at Tim Hortons and the debate started. We’re good friends and old friends and yet we had always side-stepped the issue. She was outraged at the Carleton arrests and any sort of infringement of pro-lifers’ free speech rights, but she didn’t agree with me on the issue.
“I’m pro-choice,” my friend explained. “I don’t think abortion should be used as birth control. If I got pregnant, I’d have the baby. But in the case of rape, I don’t think the woman should be forced to endure that for nine months. I can’t tell her what to do in that circumstance.”
The conversation unfolded in the typical way, (for the pro-life position against abortion even in the case of rape, please see this link) but eventually we reached an impasse. She admitted she didn’t know exactly what the preborn child was. She agreed it was killing but… When she walked right into a logical flaw, she admitted it. But…
“A woman with a born child can give it up; there’s a system in place to help. But with pregnancy, she alone deals with that.”
“But why does that give her a right to kill?”
She admitted that she wanted the number of abortions to decrease. She thought the reality of abortion in Canada is far from ideal, in terms of reasons for it, the lack of informed consent, and the lack of support systems to help woman keep their children.
“So you disagree with most abortions that are happening but why?” I asked. “Why do you care about them when you don’t even know what they are?”
“Look, purely based on logic, yeah, what you said makes sense. But there’s more to it than just logic.”
“Yes, I absolutely agree with you in terms of logic,” piped up another friend. “In terms of logic, I’m on your side. But there’s also the emotional side to it.”
The discussion ended abruptly and we parted ways. If this had been a formal debate with a judge keeping score, I would have won. I had made a clear, coherent and logical case for the pro-life position, a fact conceded by my friends.
But winning arguments doesn’t matter and I don’t care what a judge would think of how I argued. All the logic in the world can’t move a heart that doesn’t want to move. Perhaps my words planted seeds; perhaps progress was made. Perhaps. Maybe all I have left is to not waver in my commitment to the cause, regardless of the sacrifices it requires. My words can’t change a heart, but perhaps the way I live my life can.