Note: The views in my post do not apply to all people who are pro-life. Not all people who support abortion are pro-woman and not all people who are against abortion are anti-woman. Some of my past posts have been critical of articles that take a liberal approach to sci-fi. This is the first post to criticize a conservative article.
Usually I never take sides in the abortion debate because I find the arguments of both sides to be irritating and outdated. Plus abortion is not as cut and dry as some people believe.
But lately I’ve been extremely irritated with the sheer hypocrisy of some that profess to be “pro-life” because they’re anything but when it comes to life outside the womb as seen in this July 4, 2017 article from the Christian website, ChurchPop, titled “8 Surprisingly Pro-Life Quotes From Wonder Woman“. Written by Mark Haas, it’s an admiration of Patty Jenkins’ 2017 blockbuster (appropriate, since we’re getting close to the theatrical release of Wonder Woman 1984 – someday). On the surface, it’s great to see a conservative Christian publication praise and admire a film and character with a feminist legacy. But on closer inspection, it turns out that this writer really missed the point of the movie.
It wasn’t the fancy fighting techniques and impressive scenery that appealed to me. What really drew me in were the overwhelming pro-life themes, and the defense of the innocent. These sentiments were shared on screen (almost exclusively) by the main character, Diana, whom we later discover is Wonder Woman.
Hold on – a strong female lead character – from a major Hollywood blockbuster – proclaiming the defense of innocent life? The themes and quotes were undeniable, so I began to write them down.
Um, “a strong female lead character proclaiming the defense of innocent life”? You think Diana is the first to do that? What about when Queen Amidala said “I will not condone a course of action that will lead us to war?” Or “I was not elected to watch my people suffer and die while you discuss this invasion in a committee!” Heck, her whole story arc in The Phantom Menace was about saving innocent lives from the Trade Federation. Or what about the whole plot of Disney’s Pocahontas – a film I feel gets more criticism than it really deserves – where the titular protagonist begs her father and her love interest to cease hostilities so that the settlers and her people can live in peace?
Maybe it’s because two of those films weren’t critically acclaimed enough?
“Who do you fight for?” Mercenary named Sameer, “No one”. “So you only fight for profits?”
(Note: She was talking to Chief, not Sameer.)
“For example, Planned Parenthood performed 323,999 abortions in 2016, (887 per day; 37 per hour; 1 every 97 seconds) all while earning $1.3 billion (in 2015) in revenue. Their CEO, Cecile Richards, is compensated just under $1 million while working for this “charitable” organization. Again, a few are profiting for the sake of the many.”
Hmmm, 323,999 abortions. You know what else matches that number in loss of life? According to the Giffords Institute (the one founded by Gabrielle Giffords) 37,603 Americans die by gun violence every year – an average of 100 every day. 61% by suicide, 36% by homicide, 1.4% police shootings (interesting), 1.3% by accidental and 0.8% undecided. In 2017, gun deaths reached their highest level in at least 40 years, with 39,773 deaths that year alone. Domestic violence victims are 5 times more likely to be killed when their abuser has access to a gun (see “The Boyfriend Loophole”). And let’s not even get into the profits gun manufacturers make from gun production every year.
Yet whenever a mass shooting (that often involves – wait for it – children) makes the news, these same “pro-lifers” downplay the tragedy and scream about their 2nd amendment rights. What do they need those guns for? Don’t they remember what Jesus said at Matthew 26:52 or read Isaiah 2:4? What good is having a child if that child will later be killed in a drive by shooting?
It’s also ironic that throughout this article Mr. Haas never for once lists any of the casualties of World War 1 (or any war) since that’s the setting for the film. The pro-life messages Diana talks about involve war.
(Don’t even get me started on their refusal to wear masks or their demands to hold church services in the middle of a pandemic. Haven’t these people ever heard of Zoom?)
Yes, Planned Parenthood has its problems, but when it comes to a non-profit, single provider of reproductive health services in the US, PP is the only game in town. Not every woman goes to Planned Parenthood to have an abortion as shown by these personal testimonies below:
I am pro-life, however, I am also highly aware that many pro-life people do little to no work to help babies and children who are hungry, living in poverty, and/or in abusive homes. Why aren’t pro-life people making noise about these childhood issues as well? It’s important to try and protect the unborn, but why aren’t they putting as much effort into protecting the born? – Kelly
A friend of mine was diagnosed with cervical cancer during a well care visit to Planned Parenthood. Planned Parenthood, thank you so much for saving the life of my friend. – Bill
People don’t realize that Planned Parenthood supplies testing, birth control and other good services. – V.O.
PP saved my life, I went in for a free pap and birth control after getting out of the army as neither my husband or I had insurance. I found out I had cancer cells during my pap. It was caught early enough that I just needed minor surgery. So I stand with PP. – Bela
My son is adopted. His birth mother doesn’t believe in abortion but she had no medical insurance and went to Planned Parenthood for prenatal care which ensured she had a healthy baby that she was able to place for adoption. – P.D.D.R
Planned Parenthood does SO MUCH MORE than abortions. They provided my wife with low cost (or free, can’t remember) birth control when we were younger also helped diagnose and treat her ovarian cysts. Then she continued to go to them for prenatal care when she was pregnant with our first child, as she trusted the clinic and staff, and our lack of decent health insurance at the time would have meant a huge burden financially. – Joseph
P.P. helps with OB/GYN services that people with low income or no insurance can afford, prenatal care, family planning, helps people enroll in WIC services, many POSITIVE things. Too many people think it is a fly-by-nite abortion clinic. Unless you have actually utilized their facility, you have no idea. They helped with yearly exams when I had no insurance. What major clinic would provide a pelvic exam for $18.00 and call it a wash? Not in this lifetime… – Lynna
The anti-choice crowd is simply anti-abortion, not pro health of women. They do nothing to prevent unwanted pregnancies, only criticize the availability of the choice to have an abortion after the fact. When they begin to do something to prevent unwanted pregnancies, then they will be doing some good. And isn’t that what PP does? – Bruce
My parents never had “the talk” with me. My intro into sexual health was with PP. They were professional, friendly, and very knowledgeable. I recently had a dr. tell me that I didn’t need to do a full well woman’s exam because it was not over 5 yrs (should be every 3 – 5 yrs). I left and went to PP the next morning and they handle everything. Those in an uproar are oblivious to the facts and let a skewed narrative influence their opinion. – Crystal
The primary service of Planned Parenthood is cancer screening for low income women, primarily ovarian and breast. The obsession on the smallest aspect of their services deprives women of needed services when funding is cut. – MK
I went to PP in the 80’s. Got my first pap and 1st birth control there. They were wonderful. At no time was abortion ever pushed on me. – Tina
Heck, my mother utilized Planned Parenthood’s services when she was pregnant with me and my brother – and it wasn’t to have an abortion and she wasn’t some rebellious, reckless, unwed teenager – she was an adult married woman with a working husband.
If pro-lifers disagree with Planned Parenthood’s stance on abortion, then why not just build more anti-abortion clinics that also provide pap smears, cancer screenings, pregnancy check-ups and birth control? And why aren’t they also exposing Planned Parenthood’s other sins (as seen in the links)?
“You should not be afraid to upset the peace agreement.”
Wonder Woman is not satisfied by armistice peace agreements. Save the innocent – or keep fighting. No one ever said that you have to be satisfied with a faulty societal premise.
Norma McCorvey (the Roe of Roe vs. Wade) passed away last year. Although she was a key player in the Supreme Court decision on abortion, she later became one of the most outspoken pro-life advocates, and devoted her life to the pro-life movement. Slavery was legal at one time. Abusing your wife (privately, and as long as you did not make a scene) was acceptable at one time. An exclusively male voter participation was commonplace at one time.
Laws can be changed. We must keep fighting for the innocent and the defenseless. After all, “You should not be afraid to upset the peace agreement.”
Once again, Diana is talking about the Armistice of 1918, y’know, the one that “ended” World War 1 but didn’t stop World War 2? Or Korea? Or Vietnam? Why does he keep ignoring this? Why hasn’t he talked about the lives lost by wars and genocide for the last 102 years? Is it because some priests and clergymen expressed support for those wars, encouraged people to enlist and even told soldiers that “God was on their side?”
If Mr. Haas is talking about outlawing abortion, then it’s pretty rich that he would compare it to outlawing wife abuse, when some wives have abortions because of an abusive marriage. It’s also reminds me of Christian women who’ve spoken out about sexual misconduct in the churches and are met with denial and anger.
And even if we we’re to overturn Roe,
would that stop women from having abortions? Could that lead to a rise in infanticide? There was abortion before Roe
and it was deadly. Just recently women in Mexico (a country where abortion is illegal) held a protest
for abortion rights. Again, if you’re going to outlaw abortion, you need to replace it with something to help women.
Being pro-life encompasses all lives. There is someone who could use a visit in a hospital or a prison. There is someone who could use some extra clothes. There is someone who could use a hug. Save someone today.
Yes, all lives matter, but it takes more than giving away hugs and clothes to save lives. It takes diligence, organization, effort and financial compensation. It takes government sponsored programs to help those in need. Do you believe in those kinds of programs Mr. Haas?
To be fair, Mr. Haas concludes his article with this very astute assessment:
This final line in the film is so profound. Lead your decisions in life with love. We should all meditate on that sentiment. As the credits rolled, I couldn’t believe what I had been hearing for the last two hours. I was in constant anticipation as I continued hearing these quotes, which clearly called for the defense of the innocent. And then as icing on this cake – love – of course!
Yeah, because that’s been her message for nearly 80 years!
When William Moulton Marston was envisioning a new superhero for the comics, he wanted one that emphasized the qualities of love, peace, wisdom and kindness. May I recommend that Mr. Haas read some Moulton era WW comics for further enjoyment? Or read the equally popular George Perez comics? Or watch the Lynda Carter TV show which also teaches some profound lessons?
I will conclude this post with a quote from author, speaker and nun Joan Chittister, who is pro-life but saw the hypocrisy within the movement:
“I do not believe that just because you’re opposed to abortion that that makes you pro-life. In fact, I think in many cases, your morality is deeply lacking if all you want is a child born but not a child fed, not a child educated, not a child housed. And why would I think that you don’t? Because you don’t want any tax money to go there. That’s not pro-life. That’s pro-birth. We need a much broader conversation on what the morality of pro-life is.”