A friend from high school suggested that I like a page called, “North Carolina Values Coalition,” which just goes to show that the definition of “friend” on FB is nothing like the definition of a friend outside of social networking.
It has occurred to me that there’s nothing quite as “un-value-like” as an organization that claims to promote family values, which, of course, just means a group of conservative church-folks forming a coalition to push their own agenda. The religious right is good at that, at forming groups to criticize, condemn and complain about what other people are doing. If you need proof of who is running the show, take a look at their website. (Be sure to read their “values” and their “strategy.”)
The first thing I noticed when I viewed the North Carolina Values Coalition page was that it was mostly addressing one issue: abortion. The second thing I noticed, which I’m sure you guys already know, is that, for people who claim to love fetuses and all of God’s creatures, they are the most vulgar, hateful group I’ve ever seen. If you need proof of that, too, check out the stones these nice followers in Christ are throwing at Chelsea Clinton for expressing her views. In the absence of intellectual horsepower, name-calling seems to be their only option. Of course, no one on this FB page addressed the most important issue associated with limiting a woman’s choice: If the fetus is saved from the evils of abortion, whether he is healthy or disabled, who is stepping up to the plate to care for him until he is 18 or older?
Which brings me to the next point, an article I read recently about a woman who had an abortion at 23 weeks, a woman who struggled mightily with her decision. Whether a woman is terminating a pregnancy because she cannot afford a baby or because her boyfriend is in jail or because the baby is not developing properly, who are we to judge? It is clearly a personal struggle for women, and it’s a burden on her body, even when conceived intentionally and out of joy.
Why would we let our personal feelings get in the way of someone else’s decision that does not even remotely affect us? An abortion seems like a horrible experience, an experience that, apparently, sticks to your conscience forever. I have no idea, if faced with an unwanted or difficult pregnancy, what I would do, but I sure as hell would not want some stranger making me feel even worse. I wonder what percentage of pro-lifers have actually had abortions themselves, and now, with a guilty conscience, feel that this is their cause.
This coalition–and others like them–claim to be pro-parental choice. But you can’t have it both ways. You can’t say we want government out of our lives, except when it comes to pregnant women. Unless you’re saying, “We want government out of our lives, but we (God’s crusaders) want to stay in your life.” You can’t say, “God tells me not to judge,” and then try to bully others into making choices that you would not necessarily make for yourself. Of course, either way–in judging others or in physically preventing a woman from entering a doctor’s office–you’ve just stepped into “God’s” shoes. And for those of you who live where I do, I’m sure you’ve seen the right-to-lifers (and their embarrassed children), standing on the corner of Eldorado and Highway 75, picketing Planned Parenthood. Pathetic.
What I don’t understand is the vehemence with which some of these folks fight to make choices for someone else’s fertilized eggs when there are children in need all over the world. Hungry children. Sick children. Abused children. Children caught in the crossfire of war. The Catholic Church is one of the loudest voices, and it makes sense that, once upon a time, they wanted to fill their churches with as many babies as possible–that was the church’s future source of revenue (or potential pool of priests and nuns).
But, why, when so many children born today will not grow up to be Catholic or Protestant, do the religious work themselves into a frenzy? There is no Biblical support to suggest that saving fetuses will buy you a ticket to heaven.
I guess that’s why we need groups like North Carolina Values to throw a bone for its followers to chase after. They make people feel useful, feel purposeful, without giving them real responsibility. Every organization needs something that unifies its members, even if it just means getting into everyone else’s business while ignoring your own flaws and limitations and hypocrisies.
Oh, and about FB. I suggested a page, too, for the first time ever. I sent my “friend” a recommendation for the Freedom From Religion page. I’m sure the devil made me do it.