January 22 marked the anniversary of Roe v. Wade, the 1973 Supreme Court case that liberalized abortion law. Last year Diana Hsieh and I reviewed the reasons why that’s a good thing. But the religious right, driven by religious faith, ignores the reasons why abortion should remain legal.
The Rocky Mountain News reports, “Abortion is the slavery issue of our time, author Eric Metaxas told about 400 people at the annual Colorado Right to Life rally Thursday on the steps of the Capitol.” Metaxis made it clear that his motive is religious faith: “God is the one who calls you to the battle.”
However, the comparison between abortion and slavery completely falls apart in light of the fact that a fertilized egg is not a person, whereas a slave is. As Diana and I also point out, the true comparison is between the abolitionist movement and the progress in making abortion legal. Abolishing slavery and legalizing abortion both protect the rights of people.
Yet, not only does the religious right continue to push its faith-based politics, it makes it a priority, despite the movement’s sound defeat last November. For example, Andrew Tallman writes, “[A]bortion is the single greatest moral evil of our day. Nothing else even comes close.” But where is his argument that abortion is evil at all? In fact it is the prohibition of abortion that is morally evil. But, to the religious right, violating people’s right to get an abortion is more important than fighting terrorism or preserving economic liberty. And that is precisely why the religious right took such a beating at the polls.