It is clearly stated in the Declaration of Independence 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." Life is an unalienable right. It's straightforward. Furthermore, the Constitution passes our rights to our posterity. Who is that? Our unborn children yet to come.
Progressives have done everything possible to discredit our Founding documents, with even President Woodrow Wilson saying, "You can't listen to the Declaration of Independence, and the Constitution is an old dusty document." Progressives would have you believe that abortion has always been a constitutional right, but that couldn't be farther from the truth. In this four-part series on abortion, we'll look at the history of abortion in America, including our Founders's clear beliefs that abortion was murder.
Listen to the Full Series on Abortion
Abortion Part I: The Founders' Views
In 2015, chairman of the Democratic National Committee, Debbie Wasserman Schultz, recited a common refrain of the pro-abortion activists: "We do not support rolling back the protection that the constitutional right to make your own reproductive choices established in Roe vs. Wade has given to women."
It should be noted that the United States Constitution actually says nothing about abortion specifically. And while it is true that the Supreme Court ruled in favor of legalized abortion in 1973, the high court cannot write constitutional amendments, meaning women's reproductive rights are still not mentioned in the Constitution. However, it would seem that the unborn babies would qualify as our posterity, and thus, deserve a chance for life and liberty.
While there is no specific language in the Constitution regarding abortion, the Founders did leave behind their beliefs on the topic. For that insight, we turn to author and historian David Barton.
After America separated from Great Britain and the Founding Fathers made their own brand-new and unique government, they still preserved and protected the legal position against abortion. This fact is made clear by founding father James Wilson. James Wilson was one of only six Founders who signed both the declaration and the Constitution. He was the second most active member at the Constitutional Convention, and he was placed as an original justice on the US Supreme Court by President George Washington.
Wilson began America's first organized legal training, and he authored our first legal textbook for students in which he told law students, quote, with consistency, beautiful, and undeviating, human life, from its commencement to its close, is protected by the common law. In the contemplations of law, life begins when the infant is first able to stir in the womb by the law that life is protected, end quote.
American law was clear. As soon as it was known that there was life in the womb, at that point, that life was protected by law for the purpose of government was to protect all unalienable rights, including that of life. In the Founders' day, they recognized that there was a right to life in the womb, so soon as James Wilson said, quote, the infant is first able to stir. That is, when movement can be felt inside and, thus, they knew for sure that there was indeed life within. But with today's technology, it is now possible to know with a certainty that life is within the womb for only a few days after conception.
Regardless, whenever it is known that life was within, according to the documents penned by our Founding Fathers, at that point, unborn life was to be protected under the law.
In the late 1700s, America's attitude on life stood out compared to the rest of the world. Because our Founders believed the things that they did about God and nature, there was a difference between the law here and elsewhere around the world. Across much of secular Europe, it was wrongly believed that parents --- not God --- gave life to their children. So under the law of those countries, parents had the right to take their child's life. After all, they believed they had given it. But Americans knew that the life of a child came not from parents, but from God. Parents, therefore, had no right to deprive an unborn child of its life.
A signer of the declaration, John Witherspoon acknowledged, "Some nations have given parents the power of life and death over their children. But here in America, we have denied the power of life and death to parents."
It may well be that America's Founding Fathers didn't specifically address the abortion issue because they couldn't conceive of a people that would destroy the lives of 55 million unborn babies in a 43-year period of time.
Abortion Part II: Margaret Sanger
The year, 1957. Mike Wallace interviewed 78-year-old Margaret Sanger, the founder of what eventually became Planned Parenthood, a group that now receives nearly half a billion dollars a year in taxpayer money to function as America's largest abortion provider.
Near the beginning of the interview, Wallace sought to determine her motives for birth control. Even a young Mike Wallace seemed shocked by some of what he heard from Margaret Sanger that day, including her belief that "the greatest sin in the world is bringing children into the world that have disease from their parents, that have no chance in the world to be a human being practically, delinquents, prisoners, all sorts of things, just marked when they're born."
Sadly, and strangely, Wallace never asked Margaret Sanger about the most controversial aspects of her character --- her association with eugenics, and the ample evidence of her racism. In her autobiography, Margaret Sanger wrote about a speech she gave in 1926 at a Ku Klux Klan rally in Silver Lake, New Jersey. The Planned Parenthood founder bragged about the fact that afterward, she was invited by 12 other Klan chapters to speak at their events.
Because of Margaret Sanger's vision, there are, in fact, disproportionately fewer blacks in America than any other race. Since 1973, legal abortion has killed more African-Americans than AIDS, cancer, diabetes, heart disease and violent crime combined. Every week, more blacks die in American abortion clinics than were killed in the entire Vietnam War. African-American Pastor Clenard Childress has said, "The most dangerous place for an African-American to be is in the womb of their African-American mother."
In Sanger's 1922 book, Women, Mortality, and Birth Control, she wrote, "We should hire three or four colored ministers, preferably with social service backgrounds and with engaging personalities. The most successful educational approach to the Negro is through a religious appeal. We don't want the word to go out that we want to exterminate the Negro population, and the minister is the man who can straighten out that idea if it ever occurs to any of their more rebellious members."
In her magazine, Birth Control Review, Sanger wrote, "Birth control must lead ultimately to a cleaner race."
If it sounds familiar, it should. It's essentially the same policy advocated and carried out by Germany's Nazi leader Adolf Hitler, whose sterilization policy Sanger openly praised. Most people associate eugenics with Hitler and the Nazis. And while the Nazis may have perfected the movement, they did not start it. It began in England and spread to the United States very early in the 20th century.
Margaret Sanger was, in fact, a racist and eugenicist who advocated for the, "extermination of the Negro population."
Abortion Part III: Roe v. Wade
In 1973, the Supreme Court legalized abortion, ruling that it was a private matter between a mother and her doctor within the first three months of pregnancy. The 7-2 ruling overturned laws in Texas, Georgia and 17 other states, stating the government had no right to enter into the now protected decision. The court ruled that during the second three months of pregnancy, the state could regulate abortion procedures, but only to ensure the safety of the mother. During the last three months of pregnancy, state laws would prevail.
Unwittingly, the Supreme Court also sentenced 55 million unborn babies to death over the next 42 years, including well over 14 million African-American children. The ruling overturned centuries of laws prohibiting taking the lives of the unborn.
How was this monumental change accomplished? How could a nation that promised the blessings of life and liberty to its posterity, a nation that so treasured its children become capable of allowing millions of its posterity to be wiped out before birth?
Lies and spin from the progressive left.
Pro-abortion activists became something everyone could love — pro-choice. Who could possibly be against choice in America? It wasn't about aborting an unborn baby anymore, but a woman's right to choose what she wanted to do with her body. In order to nullify the objection over the human being growing inside the womb, they also began a campaign to dehumanize the human fetus by referring to it as tissue or cells.
If the spin wasn't enough, there were also lies.
One of the most prominent pro-abortion activists was renowned abortionist --- and cofounder of NARAL --- Bernard Nathanson. Nathanson and his allies lied relentlessly and spectacularly about the number of women who had died each year from abortions. He claimed that between 5,000 and 10,000 women died each year from illegal abortions. The actual number in 1972, the year before Roe v. Wade, was 39. Nathanson later confessed he had lied about the numbers, knowing full well the figures were totally false. He stated his overriding concern was to eliminate the laws against abortion and "anything within reason that had to be done was permissible."
Bernard Nathanson had a change of heart one year after the nation's abortion laws were overturned in 1973. By 1980, he had given up the abortion industry entirely and eventually became active in the pro-life movement, later converting from Atheism to Christianity. But the damage had been done.
In 1970, the woman at the heart of Roe v. Wade --- Norma McCorvey, a young woman who lived in Texas --- became pregnant with her third child. She wanted an abortion, but they were illegal in Texas. So Jane Roe, as she would come to be called in court, found two young lawyers to challenge the laws. They lost their initially court battles, but appealed all the way to the United States Supreme Court. And in 1973, the Supreme Court ruled 7-2 in Roe's favor, negating the abortion laws in 46 states. Jane Roe, never had the abortion, giving her baby up for adoption instead.
Norma McCorvey came to deeply regret her decision and her part in overturning abortion laws. For decades since, she has been a committed warrior in the pro-life movement.
It's a bittersweet irony that two of the people most responsible for legalizing abortion in America became adamantly and actively pro-life.
Abortion Part IV: Today's Fight
In the 43 years since abortion became legal, 55 million babies have been destroyed and hundreds of years of laws and beliefs erased from much of society. The battle to change what we know about biology continues as the pro-life movement seeks to stop the slaughter.
Pro-abortion activists control the debate today in America. So much so that Planned Parenthood --- the organization providing the vast majority of abortions in America today --- maintains its federal funding after secret videos exposed it illegally selling body parts from aborted babies.
If this weren't such a deadly, serious issue, it would be almost comical listening to people like DNC Chairperson Debbie Wasserman Schultz avoid referring to her own children as human before they were born.
President Obama, then Illinois State Senator Obama, once awkwardly and painstakingly discussed a bill about whether a child born alive during a failed abortion should receive medical treatment (a bill that Barack Obama opposed).
As I understand it, this puts the burden on the attending physician, who has determined since they were performing this procedure, that, in fact, this is a nonviable fetus. That . . . if that fetus or child --- however, whatever way you want to describe it --- is now outside of the mother's womb, and the doctor continues to think that it's nonviable, but there's, let's say movement or some indication that, in fact, they're not just coming out limp and dead, that, in fact, they would then have to call a second physician to monitor and check off and make sure that this is not a live child that could be saved.
Hillary Clinton, the woman many consider to be the odds-on favorite to become the next president of the United States, believes that in order to bring about the kind of abortion-on-demand world she envisions, "deep-seated cultural codes and religious beliefs have to be changed." Additionally, she believes that "the unborn person doesn't have constitutional rights."
The United States extends rights to illegal aliens, terrorists tried on our soil and mass murderers. How is it possible that an unborn person, as she admitted the fetus was and is, doesn't have constitutional rights? Rights have been granted to the unborn --- our posterity --- from the very beginning of the Constitution in the preamble.
Conservatives want the government involved where it should be involved --- protecting life.
Then Republican presidential candidate Ted Cruz summed it up this way:
I think the first obligation of everyone in public office is to protect life. Life is foundational. In fact, as you look at the Declaration, that ordering of unalienable rights --- life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness --- I think is a very deliberate ordering. Without life, there is no liberty. And without liberty, there is no pursuit of happiness. That each builds upon the other."
The left speaks of the Roe v. Wade Supreme Court decision as if it had been carved into tablets on a mountaintop. They once spoke the same way about the 1883 Supreme Court decision allowing individuals and corporations to discriminate against blacks. It's time for Americans to realize that Supreme Court decisions are not --- and should not be --- the final and only word in this land.