There are a few pro-life leaders who have characterized last month's SCOTUS ruling against partial-birth abortion as a mere illusion, a hollow victory that actually works against the cause. I disagree with that view. For while it is true that I am on record (in this blog, in many private conversations, in public speeches, and in TV interviews) as saying that the Court's decision is an extremely limited one and should certainly not be taken as a diversion to the millions of preborn babies being killed by curettes, suction machines and poisonous chemicals, I nevertheless rejoiced in the Supreme Court's ruling.
1) The dramatic reality was that the Court, for the first time since Roe, placed any restriction at all upon abortion. That understandably is a source of hope that the unlimited abortion ethos of Roe might actually be checked; 2) There is also potential for more substantial change in the way the Court will view a preborn baby's right to life as suggested by certain passages of William Kennedy's argument; 3) Anything in the news that motivates Americans to look more closely at the facts about fetal development and the barbarism of abortion techniques is to be applauded, especially the huge publicity surrounding the SCOTUS decision; and 4) Anything that gets abortion enthusiasts so doggone alarmed and angry and out of control in their public demeanor is also a plus for the pro-life movement.
However, to some pro-life persons, including people I like and respect (especially American Life League's Judie Brown), the views I've stated above are completely unacceptable. Such beliefs are, in their opinion, not only evidence of flawed reasoning and cock-eyed optimism, but of moral cowardice and irresponsibility...attitudes for which one should publicly repent.
These are the issues behind the full page rebuke of Dr. James Dobson in a Colorado Springs newspaper by these guys -- an event that is the international buzz today on the net and in several MSM newspapers. And running through most of these news stories and commentaries is an obvious glee over the pro-life movements' disarray and distraction.
It is most certainly a problem we didn't need..an ugly, unjustified and counter-productive action. Disagreement we can tolerate. Discussion we should encourage. But going public in such a startling, expensive and castigating way is bound to create major problems of pain, distrust, defensiveness, confusion, anger, choosing of sides, disarrangement of duties, and more...let alone the opportunities it creates for mayhem by the real agents of the culture of death.