The Pro-Life Apologetics Manual
by Angelo Stagnaro, Hope/Life Press, £19.99
This is a really handy resource for anyone committed to the pro-life cause, for it lists and then carefully refutes more than 100 claims, assertions, myths and slogans which the pro-abortion lobby relentlessly peddles. It is cleverly written, witty and well informed. And it is a devastating analysis of the incoherence, illogicality, sophistry, double standards and often ludicrous obfuscations of the abortionists’ case.
Author Angelo Stagnaro asks, for instance, why humanists are so “care-less” of unborn human life. It mocks the ruthless narcissism of the hardline feminists who conveniently overlook the fact that, worldwide, far more unborn girls than boys are aborted. It asks why being “unwanted” (or the “product” of incest or rape) merits death – even in societies that have abolished the death penalty and even though the victims are always innocent. It asks why, if “foeticide” is lawful, infanticide is not. If contraceptives are ever more available, why are there so many abortions? What is the difference between abortionism and racism?
Agreed, the Bible does not explicitly forbid abortion. But it does not explicitly condemn safe-cracking or tax evasion. So are these permitted? And so on. Pro-lifers will cheer every page.
Yes, the book is very “Catholic” in that it quotes Humanae Vitae and other Catholic teaching eagerly. But these are so grounded in right reason that no reasonable person should find them difficult to cope with. And they are so biblical that an old-fashioned Protestant would be equally at ease with them. But I wish Stagnaro did not talk about “the foetus” throughout. That is abortion-speak. Let’s just have “unborn child”.
On the other hand, rejoice, especially in the following message from this clever book: birth is simply an incident in a child’s life. Essentially it changes the way in which he/she takes in oxygen and food. It certainly does not confer humanity on him or her. So if the child in the womb is not already a real human being, we have to conclude that none of us is human. And that, as Euclid would have said, is absurd.