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Is God Pro-Choice?

The below was a past article written and sent to me by my reader and friend, John Cunningham in response to last Wednesday's post: what happens after women get an abortion?

John Cunningham is a New Hampshire lawyer specializing in limited liability company law and tax. Before becoming a lawyer, he obtained an M.A. in philosophy from Fordham University and taught philosophy at Georgetown University for three years.

In general, John is a smart and well thought out guy. I found his piece interesting, and if you like my blogs I think you will too.

Here are John's thoughts on: Is God Pro-Choice?

The pro-life legal and ethical commitments of many New Hampshire voters and legislators arise from their religious faith. This faith teaches them that from the moment of conception, a human zygote is a full human person and that God himself mandates its preservation, however great the cost to the pregnant woman who bears it and to her loved ones.

But there are many Christian theologians whose profound belief in God and whose expert knowledge of sacred scripture convince them that God is not pro-life; he is pro-choice.

In addressing abortion, all of us owe it to ourselves and to one another to consider every sincere viewpoint on how to resolve that difficult crucially important issue. This includes the viewpoint of pro-choice theologians. Their vision as I understand it is this:

  • God himself is the creator of every human life. However, he is also the source and, moment by moment, the continuing creator of every teenage girl and mature woman, including those who, because of rape, incest or even just mistake, accident or carelessness, become pregnant.

  • Because it is a human person, God attaches sacred value to every human zygote. However, he also attaches sacred value—indeed, infinite value—to the right of every woman, including a pregnant woman, to seek her self-realization and the self-realization of those she loves. In Thomas Jefferson’s phrase, she has the “unalienable right” to pursue her own and her loved ones’ happiness.

  • Like Jefferson, pro-choice theologians believe this right comes from God. Indeed, they believe that for many women, it makes their termination of their pregnancy not only a right but even, in some cases, a religious obligation.

  • A hypothetical example: Mary Jones is married. She has a husband and two children whom she deeply loves. Her family is poor. Her contraceptive pill fails and she becomes pregnant. Because she and her husband cannot afford to have and raise a third child without harming all three children, she chooses abortion.

  • Jesus was a Galilean peasant. He probably possessed no formal education and may even have been illiterate. His native culture was deeply patriarchal. But he possessed and taught, in his life and on the cross, an original, radical and profound religious vision. The fact that many of his closest followers, those he loved the most, were women was central to this vision. For many theologians, Jesus’s radical respect and love for women is the heart of their pro-choice vision.

As an individual trained only in philosophy and law, I can’t evaluate this vision. But I owe it to my wife, my daughters, my granddaughter and every other woman I know to give it full consideration.

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14 sept 2023

Many college women abort their unintended pregnancy so save face or finish college on time, but she still ended a life. Faith is not foolishness. Many women have told me their pain, in confidence. Since I am the only person they said they knew who could be trusted to be quiet and just listen. They never forgot.

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