Images from inside the womb show babies apparently smiling and crying
Link courtesy of RC at Catholic Light.
Unlike many of my fellow pro-lifers, I do not think that re-criminalizing abortion is the best way to eliminate this sin and scandal. I think that it will require a cultural abhorrance such that it won't matter if it is legal or illegal, it will become unthinkable. Alas, I also do not see that happening anytime soon. As utilitarianism and consumerism have become the predominant cultural ethos, life itself has become of lesser value than the ability to produce and consume material goods.
I personally know otherwise caring physicians and nurses who will freely acknowledge that the embryo and fetus are fully human, with awareness and the ability to experience physical pain and possibly even emotions, who still support unlimited abortion rights. It is their belief that the rights of the adult(s) to continue life unencumbered by pregnancy, childbirth, and a living child supercede the right to life of that unborn.
There used to be a plot device in fiction (novels and movies) where there was a difficult medical decision to make between the life of an unborn and the life of the pregnant woman. Catholic hospitals and physicians were inevitably (stereotypically?) portrayed as sacrificing the life of the mother to save the baby so it could be baptized. Before cesareans were something that women routinely survived, there were limited options for obstructed labor. Some accoucheurs would perform destructive operations on living infants in the hope of saving a mother at the cost of her baby's life. (In reality, in those days, such an operation usually resulted in the death of the mother as well from infection or hemorrhage). Even today, cesareans carry a greater risk to the mother of death and disability than does a normal birth, and should only be done for reasons of medical necessity. A mother is asked to be generous, but only rarely is it a matter of the life of one vs. the life on another. Abortion on demand trivializes the generosity of so many mothers, and has significanlty decreased the status of women in our society.
Blessed Gianna's story is an example of a difficult medical decision. To quote from the medical description of her condition and choices
Sadly, though, we live in an age where life and death decisions against the unborn child are made with an ever greater casualness, and pregnancies are terminated for reasons that can only be termed trivial. Blessed Glanna's example of heroic commitment to the life of her own child throws into clear relief the scandal of the easy-abort mentality of our day. She believed that the privilege of being a mother, of being a cooperator with God in bringing forth new life meant always defending and protecting her children, whether in or out of the womb, even to the point of giving up her own life on their behalf. Even though it is rarely to the point of death, every mother is aware of this profound maternal reality of being immolated and making great silent sacrifices on behalf of their children.
Blessed Gianna, pray for us. May the explosion of medical technology, that might have saved your life, be used for the good of mankind and not to further the cause of the destroyers of human life. Continue to pray for those of us working in the field of human reproduction, that we might keep our focus on the Kingdom of Heaven and not on the pressures of earth.