Response to “Pro-life rally dishonest”

by Kathryn Elliot

I must disagree with some of the statements made in your recent editorial concerning the Center for Bio-ethical ReformâÄôs display on abortion. You said that âÄúreferring to abortion as genocide is factually incorrect, misleading and does nothing to encourage healthy debate.âÄù During the one hour of microphone time the organization was permitted, I witnessed a respectful and thought-provoking exchange of ideas that could certainly be termed a âÄúhealthy debate.âÄù The speaker fielded questions and comments from members of both sides of the issue. The pamphlet that CBR passed out at the event itemizes the criteria for genocide as defined by sources such as the WebsterâÄôs New World Encyclopedia and the United NationsâÄô legal definition. It then explains how abortion could arguably, if not reasonably, fit the criterion. In specific answer to your editorialâÄôs claim that âÄúthere exists no deliberate and organized effort to destroy all fetuses,âÄù (the âÄúsystematicâÄù portion of the definition of genocide) the pamphlet points out that abortion is paid for through tax dollars and performed in clinics built for the practice. Certainly the abortion rights movement in itself could be labeled an organized effort as well. And while you spent time disseminating the particulars of the word âÄúsystematic,âÄù the crucial point of argument âÄî whether or not abortion is murder âÄî was dismissed. Truly, if the debate does not address what constitutes a âÄúperson,âÄù it cannot begin to discuss whether or not fetuses are an âÄúidentifiable group.âÄù You called the comparison of abortion to genocide âÄúextreme intellectual dishonesty,âÄù but the arguments on both sides are at least plausible. My conclusion after taking in the spoken words, written ideas and indeed graphic images of the CBR display was not that it was irrational and sensationalist, but rather well-researched and conscientious. In my eyes, your credibility as a news source is damaged by this editorialâÄôs exaggerated accusations. If you had done your research well you would have been able to present the organizationâÄôs claims accurately, rather than reporting on the first-glance appearances of the demonstration. Kathryn Elliot University undergraduate student