The Unborn, First in Public Policy
The Scriptures say, that when we obey Christ and transform our minds to conform to His, that “there is no Greek or Jew, circumcised or uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave or free, but Christ is all, and is in all.” Colossians 3:11. Over history, by development of ideas, and by transformation of minds and hearts by the grace of Him, mankind and the law have also accepted this elevated thinking.
Before God, as is the goal of modern human law, there is no distinction between groups of people. In principle, it is “justice for all.” This is well established in the founding principles and laws of the United States, where it was written:
We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. –That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, (Declaration of Independence, July 4, 1776).[i]
This elemental legal cornerstone of the United States of America proves we are a Godly nation at our founding, and are based upon two principles: (1) that no man is above the law, and (2) that there are fundamental laws grounded in the natural law, or that law which is derived by nature. For instance, any human legislative body cannot repeal the law against murder, assault, battery, robbery, stealing, and lying, among others. These laws are written into our very beings, and if the state were to allow such infringements, the state’s laws are void because they violate the natural law that is written on our minds and upon our hearts. (Hebrews 10:16) St. Thomas Aquinas says such governmental enactments are not law, but are a type of violence. Without just men and women serving in governmental posts and without just laws, tyranny will soon follow.
Public policy and public laws must be rooted in and guided by the natural law and the concept that no man or woman is above the law. God has called many people to advocate for good public policy. These are advocates, jurists, and activists who work in the political arena for the common good, seeking to perfect society through the cooperation of public and private officials and entities. There is many a laudable goal, when these activists advocate for the homeless, the disenfranchised, the naked, the voiceless, and the poor, among others.
The foremost principle in our modern social culture is that all such advocates and activists should first advocate justice for unborn persons. The unborn share in the characteristics of all other disenfranchised groups. In other words, the unborn persons are naked, voiceless, innocent, unseen, disenfranchised, blind, choice-less, and marginalized. Based upon present U.S. law as stated by the Nation’s highest Court, the unborn have no rights or guarantees to pursue happiness, to own property, to make love, to have children, or to simply live and breathe. The unborn children who are aborted will never see the sunset, or be guided by the Scriptures, or see, or feel, or touch those about them. Innocent of personal sin, the unborn child has made no choices, has not failed or succeeded, or responded to God’s grace or sinned.
Advocacy for good public policy is not grounded in a proverbial woven cloth, but a priority rooted in justice first for the most innocent and voiceless in our society. Effective advocacy starts with the rights of the innocent unborn, which fruitfully legitimizes and encourages advocacy for the homeless, the disenfranchised, the disabled, the marginalized, the poor, the sick, and the suffering.
Under the present law in the United States, the pure power of choice trumps the rights of persons (unborn) granted under the natural law—in other words, God-given rights—and life becomes cheap in all its forms; whether unborn, old, sick, homeless, hungry, blind, poor, voiceless, powerless, or disabled. When men and women of good will seek legal justice and public policy based upon fundamental rights and not for political purposes, it will result in clarity and priority of purpose for all other advocacy.
Therefore, as a matter of justice, as a matter of true concern and Godly charity, it is essential that Christian advocates and activists, whether for political, religious, or social purposes, and Christian public officials, concern themselves by prioritizing their effort for life; firstly the unborn, and secondly other persons. To bring justice to all the disadvantaged, we must first bring it to the most humble and poor first. In modern America, that is the unborn.
[i] I believe St. Robert Bellarmine would have echoed this key element of the Declaration of Independence, with one exception that is set out in the Holy Scriptures, that there is no authority except that which is established by God. [Romans 13:1]. In as much that all power derives from God, those people who control the government do so by the consent of the governed. This is one of the key safeguards against tyranny.