OPINION – The downside of watershed moments in human history is that almost no one recognizes them except in retrospect.
Fundamental changes to our thinking and our character seldom come in one jarring moment. They creep in on cats feet and incrementally become a part of our way of life.
Things that would have shocked our sensibilities just two generations earlier are not only accepted but vigorously defended in the court of public opinion.
The undercover videos recently released by the Center for Medical Progress have brought this phenomenon to the forefront. In the videos, representatives from Planned Parenthood are clearly recorded arranging for the sale of fetal body parts harvested from abortions.
Those who wish to verify the claims for themselves can watch the investigative videos in their entirety or read the transcripts here.
The videos have prompted outrage among long-time abortion opponents. Some who have been largely indifferent to the abortion issue are finding it hard to remain neutral.
Even if it were possible to set the moral issues aside, it is still illegal to sell body parts and to kill newly born children; both activities which the videos show Planned Parenthood employees engaging in or admitting to engaging in.
At the same time, video proof of the depths of depravity within the abortion culture has brought forth some surprising attempts to defend the indefensible.
In a classic case of, “Are you gonna believe me or your lying eyes?” the White House defended Planned Parenthood and dismissed the videos as “fraudulent” with “not a lot of evidence behind them.”
A Los Angeles Superior Court judge sought to ban the release of the latest video from the Center for Medical Progress by granting an injunction against them at the behest of the National Abortion Federation.
Pro-abortion media sources are desperately trying to distract and discredit those who have brought the disturbing footage to light. Abortion is a topic that has been relegated to carefully chosen words like “termination” or “product of conception” that do not allow us to accurately envision what is taking place.
That linguistic deception is about to collide head on with reality.
It was only a matter of time before Americans were confronted with indisputable proof of what is going on behind the doors of our nation’s abortion mills.
This is the watershed moment that we are facing as a nation. The larger question that will define us as a society is: What will we do about it?
Will this be the catalyst that prompts us to examine our individual sense of right and wrong and to make necessary adjustments in our thinking and behavior? Or will we find a reason to ignore what we’ve learned and simply allow our already numbed consciences to slip deeper into the abyss?
If the prospect of taking millions of innocent lives isn’t enough to shock us awake, will the malevolence of those profiting from the destruction of those lives be enough to arouse our sense of propriety?
At what point would we be willing to draw the line?
If no such moral line in the sand exists, then we’re not so different ethically from the societies that countenanced such horrors as the Holocaust, the Soviet Gulag, and China’s Cultural Revolution. They too surrendered their humanity on the basis of their leaders’ insistence to use whatever means it took to accomplish their ends.
We believe we’re better than the German citizens living under the Third Reich who eventually came to the sickening realization that their gradual departures from morality were leading to madness. We shake our heads and wonder why they didn’t speak out or take a stand when they had the chance, yet our society is following the same pattern.
In Milton Mayer’s book “They Thought They Were Free – The Germans 1933-1945,” a German citizen explained how the growing shift in personal values suddenly becomes clear:
And one day, too late, your principles, if you were ever sensible of them, all rush in upon you. The burden of self-deception has grown too heavy, and some minor incident, in my case my little boy, hardly more than a baby, saying ‘Jewish swine,’ collapses it all at once, and you see that everything, everything, has changed and changed completely under your nose. The world you live in — your nation, your people — is not the world you were born in at all.
As much as we may wish it were not so, we are facing a similar moment of realization.
This is much more than a question of whose politics will prevail. It’s a test of personal character and whether we will stand for our best values or surrender them.
It may not be an easy choice but none of us will avoid it. How we view our actions in retrospect will tell us if we made the right choice.
Bryan Hyde is a radio commentator and opinion writer in Southern Utah. The opinions stated in this article are his and not representative of St. George News.
- Hatch joins 49 senators raising concerns with planned parenthood practices
- Advocates take to the streets for, against Roe v. Wade; STGnews Videocast – 2015
- Advocates for life, babies, demonstrate before Planned Parenthood; STGnews Videocast – 2014
- Demonstrators converge before Planned Parenthood; STGnews videocast – 2013
- Planned Parenthood: Sexual Education Before Abortion as STDs On the Rise
- Abortion in Utah legal but availability limited, especially in Southern Utah
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