Here’s a hypothetical situation to consider: If a genetic predisposition to homosexuality were proved and it could identified in utero (i.e., in an unborn child), would your position on abortion change in either direction? Keep in mind that this may be a reality one day.
A friend of mine is pro-choice (an escort at Planned Parenthood, no less) and fiercely pro-“same-sex marriage” (SSM *). While we were having a friendly debate on his blog he insisted that there were genetic connections to homosexuality. I find this to be irrelevant with respect to the morality of homosexual behavior, but for the sake of argument I posed this to him:
So what will your position be if those traits [genetic predispositions to homosexuality] are ever identifiable in utero? Given that people abort for all sorts of reasons (gender, club feet, convenience, etc.) it isn’t hard to imagine that people will be quick to abort if their child is somewhat predisposed to be gay. I’d be opposed to those abortions, of course, but if there is a genetic correlation it will be virtually wiped out in a hurry.
I’m sure others have come up with this question but I haven’t seen it anywhere else. I think it effectively determines the priorities of the average liberal (pro-SSM / pro-choice) and conservative (pro-traditional marriage / pro-life).
If you are in one of those categories, what would you decide?
If you are pro-traditional marriage and pro-life then I hope you took 0.0 seconds to choose the life position, as I did. If you would make an exception for abortion in the case of a potentially gay human then shame on you. Please stop by my house at your earliest convenience so I can grab you by the collar and shake some sense into you. Seriously, abortion kills an innocent human being and is therefore immoral. Exceptions for people who might be predisposed to a certain sin wouldn’t be exceptions at all because we are all sinners in need of a savior.
Now, if you are pro-SSM and pro-choice, it is time to squirm. If you aren’t willing to legislate that abortions couldn’t be performed to eliminate potentially gay humans, then please meditate on your position relative to mine: I think it should be illegal to abort just because the unborn might be gay, while you think it should be legal. I’m not saying you would want them to be killed, just that you think it should be legal. Please keep that in mind the next time you want to label a pro-lifer as an intolerant, bigoted, “homophobe” for merely opposing government recognition of SSM.
On the other hand, if you would support legislation to make this type of abortion illegal, then please reconcile why you think the lives of potentially gay humans must be spared while those in the following categories are fair game for unrestricted crushing and dismemberment:
- Financial distress
- Disruptive to education or career
- Pressure from parents or father of the child
- Potentially disabled – Down syndrome, cleft palate, club feet
- Wrong characteristics – hair color, too small, too big, etc.
- Gender selection – male or female
- Just plain unwanted
Once someone makes an exception for any class of unborn human then they have the burden of proof to explain why others wouldn’t be just as deserving of life. And that argument will be impossible to make.
I encourage conservatives to gently work these arguments into conversations where feasible. They can simultaneously advance a pro-life position and disabuse people of the myth that anyone who considers homosexual behavior to be a sin is a “homophobe.”
In summary, if a genetic link that can be identifed in utero is ever proved then Lefties will need to choose which they love more, abortions or gay people. As an orthodox Christian I’ve already picked gay people. So far all the Lefties I’ve asked value abortion rights more, but the sample isn’t that large. Feel free to weigh in yourself.
* “Same-sex marriage” (SSM) is an oxymoron (“the same-sex union of a man and a woman”). However, for easier readability I used the term SSM to connote the recognition of these marriages by the government.