When Is a Baby a Person?

In the previous post, “Look Westley, It’s a Watermelon,” I shared a metaphor to illustrate that I believe the human life begins at conception. I realize this isn’t a popular concept today. I also expect there will some who will disagree and push back. That’s good. The one response I don’t welcome is apathy, because the issue is a matter of life or death for one person involved in an abortion.

The debate ought to center on this question: When is a baby in the womb a baby that deserves legal protection?

Fortunately (or perhaps unfortunately) that debate began in the United Kingdom and the British Parliament after a woman aborted her baby that was seven months or more old in gestational age. See the excerpt below:

“A fairly one-sided ‘debate’ has been launched after a woman lied to medical professionals in order to kill her unborn baby, whose gestational age was between seven and eight months.”- Michael Curzon, Writer for The European Conservative- June 15, 2023

The incident involves a mother of three who claimed she was just seven weeks pregnant in order to secure the drugs mifepristone and misoprostol. She was in fact 32 to 34 weeks pregnant. The woman had made a number of online searches, including “How to lose a baby at six months.”

After taking the drugs that she had dishonestly obtained, they triggered labor, as intended. Her daughter—that she had named Lily—died before being born.

Today, in Great Britain the debate is over appropriate punishment, if any, for deliberately taking the life of a baby. Caroline Nokes, a member of British Parliament is calling for overhauling The Offences Against The Person Act of 1861. The act has been adapted over the years but remains British Law.

Section 58 of that law states that “Every woman, being with child, who, with intent to procure her own miscarriage, shall unlawfully administer to herself any poison or other noxious thing, or shall unlawfully use any instrument or other means whatsoever with the like intent, and whosoever, with intent to procure the miscarriage… shall be guilty of felony, and being convicted thereof shall be liable…to be kept in penal servitude for life.”

Sounds harsh.

Section 59 of the Law deals with those who supply the poison or procure the instruments to cause the miscarriage. They are also considered guilty and are to be “kept in penal servitude.”

Closer to home, in the spring of 2022, a mother assisted her 17-year-old daughter who was nearly 6 months pregnant to abort the baby. The mother ordered the abortion drugs and gave them to her daughter who reportedly had said, “I can’t wait to get this thing out of my body so I can wear jeans again….”

Mother and daughter first attempted to burn the body before finally burying it to hide the evidence. Both now face misdemeanor and felony charges for an illegal abortion and for concealing a death and abandoning a body.

Just writing that account rips my heart over the cold, insensitive attitude toward and treatment of the “stillborn” baby. My shock and pain are increased because these are people from my home state of Nebraska, where people are “common, ordinary and decent.” At least that’s what it seemed like when I grew up there.

So, if it’s not a real baby—a human child–why did the British woman name her seven-month-old baby? And in the American case, if the baby was only a “thing to get rid of,” why try to burn the body and bury the evidence?

Yes, I am angry at the careless, cold, evil treatment of these innocent persons—discarded for the sake of “convenience.” Scripture condemns it. Laws forbidding abortion have been on the books for centuries in most nations and most cities and states in the USA. Common sense and just plain decency screams that it is wrong!

I am also angry at the lies being told to justify abortion. Every little baby is precious and is wanted by someone waiting to adopt. Every embryo, even a zygote—that first diploid cell that is formed when the sperm unites with the ovum—carries the genetic material or DNA of a real person. Its gender has already been determined, as well as the color of its hair, eyes and skin. Its potential athletic skills or mental capacity is all there, waiting, just like Westley’s watermelon seed was waiting to break through the soil and greet the sun. Just like Westley’s baby sister is waiting to be cherished and loved and protected. One day, Lord willing, she will greet the world with her first cry.

But no! Some people prefer to silence them forever.

I believe the voices of the victims of abortion have not been silenced. Perhaps they may join the prayers of the martyrs whose blood cries out to be avenged. Someday, that same gentle Jesus who tousled the hair and held little children in His lap—no longer a lamb but the Lion of Judah—will avenge every innocent life that has been taken since that of Abel.

If you believe there is no God, there is also no right or wrong. Life is not sacred. It’s the survival (and pleasure) of the fittest. Let the powerful destroy the weak. But if there is a God, a Creator who made us in His image, then all life is sacred, and the reality of “right” and “wrong” can never be buried, cancelled or glossed over with politically correct terminology.

We can ignore God for a while, but not forever.