Abortion and Hostage Situations
I have usually stayed out of the abortion debate because it generally brings about too many emotional responses that I would rather not deal with because I dislike drama. However recent posts in other secular forums by posters who wanted to "put me on the spot" about my stance on the issue inspired me to write the following in which I compare unwanted pregnancies to hostage situations. I will never be pregnant because I am a male, so I've never felt completely comfortable giving my opinion on abortion, but I do know a little about hostage situations.
As a photojournalist, I've probably covered about a dozen hostage situations. They usually last anywhere from 12 to 18 hours at which point the hostage takers are either going to come out in handcuffs or body bags. To law enforcement's credit and thanks to their diligence, skill , perseverance and dedication, I've never seen a victim killed while I was covering the ordeal.
What many don't realize is that the first priority of any hostage rescue team, anywhere in the world is NOT the safety and lives of the innocent hostages. A hostage situation is considered a "homicide in progress". If the hostage takers can be neutralized while minimizing collateral damage (innocent lives), great, if not, the hostages are an "acceptable loss". Now while this may seem cold and calculating to the uninformed, let's examine why the deaths of hostages is acceptable while negotiating with terrorists is not. If, say, the one time a hostage taker gets away with negotiating what he wants, either he will strike again eventually, taking more innocent lives or his success will inspire more to follow in his example, again taking more lives. This is the chief reason why we had the fiasco in Waco back in the 90's. Now I'm not going into the obvious mistakes the government made in that disaster, but there is a very good reason, why you would've never seen David Koresh walk out of that compound,his lawyer by his side to get anything at all that he demanded. The Branch Davidians had to go down, it didn't necessarily have to go down the way it did, but the Davidians HAD to lose, for if they had've succeeded in keeping the government at bay, AFTER we had seen the images of the ATF agents backing down, that would've sent a message to every dissenter in North America from white supremacists to black separatists that they could thumb their nose at the government and get away with it (not to mention the earlier fiasco with Randy Weaver)and we would've been on the brink of anarchy. It makes no difference what KIND of government we have, no government be it totalitarian or democratic could tolerate out and out dissension.
Now lets look at abortion and the the "lesser of evils". First off, I have no sympathy for people who get pregnant unintentionally. There are too many ways to avoid it. It happened to me and my then girlfriend who later became my first wife, and we ended up raising two daughters, so personally I don't like abortion, my ex didn't like it and we walked it like we talked it. This may have been fine for us at the time, we were in our 20's, had jobs with benefits and while an unplanned child was an inconvenience, we weathered the storm. However others are not so lucky. Stats will show many, probably the majority of unwanted fetuses who will be born in abject poverty, with horrific birth defects to mothers addicted to crack and meth with virtually zero chance to be anything but another statistic on a system that can't afford it and a burden to the next generation who don't deserve it.
Now, sure, I've read the pro life propaganda about how Beethoven was born in such a condition, but deciding legal policy on such statistics is like trying to earn a living by playing the lottery.
I've heard enough about faith based morality and Bible based morality being taught in abstinence based sex ed programs (that have been miserable failures), heard enough proud Christian parents who brag on their home and private schooled kids and definitely heard enough about God's judgement on a nation and really don't care how any fundy wishes to cherry pick scriptures to support his political agenda,and definitely heard enough blame being placed on "loose morals of the hippie Hollywood liberal generation", the bottom line is, stats are stats and it doesn't matter what brought us to this point. The lesser of two evils for an unborn child in such situations is not to be born as stats will show, that the child has almost less than zero chance of being anything but another statistic on an epidemic situation.
As Forrest Gump says, "That's all I have to say about that."
"Science flies you to the moon. Religion flies you into buildings."