On empathy, science, and life

Saturday, May 9, 2009 Comments

Recently Obama spoke yet again about empathy. He speaks often regarding the importance of science.

While I have to disagree with him on the role of empathy in the U.S. Supreme Court, clearly empathy for our fellow human beings is important. So too, is scientific inquiry, which coupled with faith and spirituality is a part of the search for truth and understanding of God's creation.

Why then, do liberals (including Obama) disregard science and show not even the slightest empathy when it comes to unborn children?

While faith has told us for centuries that life begins at conception, science now confirms that truth. Science has given us the ability to look inside the womb and witness the miracle of life in its early stages. We can see the heart beating as early as 22 days after conception. We can see a baby responding to its environment and behaving in the womb much like he or she will after birth. There is no disputing this when we have the ability to see it with our own eyes. Birth is simply a change in location, from inside to outside, nothing more.

Dr. Fritz Baumgartner eloquently described the beginning of life from a scientific perspective,

There is no more pivotal moment in the subsequent growth and development of a human being than when 23 chromosomes of the father join with 23 chromosomes of the mother to form a unique, 46-chromosomed individual, with a gender, who had previously simply not existed.

Here is a glimpse of what science has shown us:

How can anyone seeing this, however skeptical they may have been, deny the innate humanity of unborn children?

How can anyone who dares to speak of empathy, who has no problem empathizing with murderers, tyrants, and terrorists, show zero empathy with regard to innocent children?

I came across this article "A Question of Empathy: How science is rehsaping the abortion debate" recently, which included some interesting analogies:
What struck him was that so few could identify with the condition of slaves they had never met – and who were so different in so many ways – until the first accounts of what they endured were published, and the first line-drawings of slave ships began to circulate. And all of a sudden there was a wave of empathy which over time eroded the notion that Africans were not like us and therefore not entitled to human treatment.

no dog has yet articulated the subjective emotional response of being bashed on the nose by a wooden spoon; no dog has yet described, in an interview, what it is like to have an injection at the vet’s. But it’s rather nice to think we live in a society where most people give the dog a cuddle when it’s whimpering, rather than simply kick it on the grounds that no one has verified that the whimpers indicate a "subjective emotional response."
I certainly hope that the inside look at pregnancy afforded by science will spur those inclined to dismiss unborn children as "not persons" to look more closely at their assumptions, to look at the unborn child with eyes of empathy rather than disdain.

Our president is an extremist on this issue, having actively fought against protections for infants born alive after a botched abortion, a bill that even NARAL did not oppose. Last time I checked, even the pro-abortion crowd at least considers a baby "alive" after birth. Letting a helpless child die from neglect is no different than physically murdering that child, and yet that is exactly where our president stands.

He and many others lecture us about torture, extending the meaning to essentially anything that could possibly be construed as making someone uncomfortable. No caterpillars, no loud music, nothing but juice and cookies (unless of course, terrorists find juice and cookies offensive in which case those would be considered "torture" as well).

Dr. Conaty gives us a disturbing view of real torture. Torture that as he puts it, Obama believes in. The events required to perform an abortion, and especially a late term partial-birth abortion, can be described no other way. There is no mercy, no acknowledgement that an unborn baby is just as capable of feeling pain as one who is born (as early as 8 weeks, as documented scientifically). In fact science shows that premature babies experience pain, even more acutely than their full-term counterparts as their nervous systems have not yet developed the ability to dampen pain sensations (as a mother of two preemies, I can attest to this). There is nothing even approaching empathy from Obama and those who agree with him on this issue.

One cannot claim the moral "high ground" of being empathatic to your fellow human beings while condoning the brutal killing of the most vulnerable human beings. One cannot claim to respect science while conveniently ignoring the results of scientific study when they don't agree with one's preconceptions.

Reagan once said, "I've noticed that everyone that is pro-abortion has already been born." Indeed.

"All those who supported slavery were free, and all those who support abortion were born... that's the way oppression works." ~Unknown

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