16 March, 2006

A pox on abortion!

As you know, South Dakota has banned abortion. The law is particularly fire-breathing, including a five-year prison sentence for doctors performing an abortion and abjuring any exception for rape or incest (which even President Bush feels should be allowed). There's some compelling logic here, after all - why should you kill an innocent child merely for the crimes of its father? And as we read here, most women who are victims of rape or incest decide to keep their child anyway. Just ask Sheryle!
Sheryle Bowers didn’t take part in research for Victims and Victors [a book by the Elliott Institute, a pro-life research group --ed], but her testimony tells the same story. She was just turning 12, and her family was in turmoil. Sheryle’s mother, Mary, was doing her best to care for her five children after her alcoholic husband left them. Then a suitor entered her life. She was attracted to him and appreciated the attention he gave her children. But unknown to Mary, the 29-year-old man, whom she would eventually marry, began a sexual relationship with Sheryle.

“He told me we needed to be very careful not to tell anyone,” Sheryle recalls, “or we would get in big trouble.” Sheryle’s childish desire to protect her mother from further pain caused her to keep the terrible secret.

Undetected, the abuser continued the incest for years, even through his marriage and divorce from Sheryle’s mother. Desperately wanting to escape, Sheryle tried again to end it when she was 18. In return, he caused her to become pregnant, hoping to force her to marry and go away with him.

The pregnancy finally revealed the awful truth, and the abuser left. Sheryle’s family rallied around her. Her mother, in Sheryle’s words, “scooped me up.” Though dealing with shame, guilt and embarrassment, Sheryle’s Christian beliefs kept her from abortion, and she gave birth to Christopher, who is now 21.

“I cried for two days in the hospital,” she recalls. “It’s not your ideal way to have a baby. But does that mean, for our convenience, we take his life?”

Overcoming the abuse took years, but Sheryle attributes her healing to God, and she credits Christopher’s birth as the beginning. “Finally God fulfilled a promise He had given me: ‘The LORD has taken away your judgments, He has cast out your enemy. The King of Israel, the LORD, is in your midst; You shall see disaster no more’ (Zephaniah 3:15).

“My son was really a gift from God because he created a way of escape,” Sheryle says. “The natural thing is to stay in the dark, to cover [the incest] up. Abortion is another way [for abuse] to stay hidden.”
Thankfully, now all women in South Dakota can "choose" life, just like Sheryle did, with the gentle encouragement of the State. And if bans in other states like Mississippi fall into place, women everywhere will be able to "choose" life! With any luck, Jesus will be SO pleased by this turn of events, He will come right down and sweep up the righteous* and take them to heaven.

Exciting times we live in. It's enough to make you ask, what should we ban next? Poll to the right!

* Viz., not us.


I must say that this story is so horrifying it's not really humorous. And it is true that in some cases abortion becomes a way to cover incest up.

A scientific study of 1,000 rape victims who were treated medically right after the rape reported zero pregnancies. [L. Kuchera, “Postcoital Contraception with Diethylstilbesterol,” Journal of the American Medical Association, October 25, 1971.] 

Uh, treated how?? B/c any treatment that helps with this process would count as abortion by most people's most honest definitions.

I can't believe the abuser just left. That's it! He left! A child molester, out on the streets. Do we care about that as a society? No! WE focus our efforts on making life maximally difficult and option-free for his victim, now *that's* our priority. Gah.

The other thing is how these stories always fast forward from the moment of conception, however accidental/irresponsible/victimized that might be, to the moment of birth, when there's a new fully formed baby no one disputes the rights of. They completely ignore the six to 9 month process in which the woman--sorry, baby-carrier-- essentially has a potentially life-threatening medical condition. If I was a pro-choice activist, I'd go find someone who maybe wanted an abortion, was discouraged by picketers or whathaveyou, and then had massive medical complications. I'd be statistically shocked if such a case did not exist. It's one thing to willing embrace those risks--huge risks--because a woman *wants* to. It's the first of many gifts our mothers give us. It's another thing entirely to have them forced upon you by a rapist aided by the state. In my mind it trivializes the gift of motherhood.

Posted by Saheli

I have never been able to understand why someone should even oppose a mother's right to have an abortion. The right to pursuit of happiness of a full grown can't be less important than that of an unborn unwanted embryo.

Posted by Anshul

See, the thing about this story is that Sheryle had a choice, just like every woman has a choice. She CHOSE to deal with her pain and trauma by having and raising the child. Another woman might CHOOSE differently. That's what the anti-abortion people don't get.

Oh, and I would revise the poll If I were you. All your female readers are going to choose to ban menstruation. :-) 

Posted by DearDarlingDidi

sheryle's story has inspired me. i'm going to physically and mentally torture young women throughout their sexual development as a way to prevent them from getting any ideas about their own self-worth. that is the critical missing component in the campaign to reduce abortions.

"i'm dirt," says the child.

"i'm so happy to hear you say that," says the adult. "you're on the road to recovery."

Posted by david

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