April 22, 2021

Fear and a Coat Hanger

coat hanger

One of the things that we in the pro-life movement have heard tons of times is “If Roe v. Wade is overturned, it’ll be back to coat hangers for women.”  It’s even to the point that at some pro-abortion rallies that coat hangers are held and displayed all around to attempt to make the point.

It’s sad that any woman would choose to insert a coat hanger into herself to kill a life.  It’s sad that hospitals and doctors had to deal with the aftermath of these botched abortions:

The worst case I saw, and one I hope no one else will ever have to face, was that of a nurse who was admitted with what looked like a partly delivered umbilical cord. Yet as soon as we examined her, we realized that what we thought was the cord was in fact part of her intestine, which had been hooked and torn by whatever implement had been used in the abortion. It took six hours of surgery to remove the infected uterus and ovaries and repair the part of the bowel that was still functional.

So, this doctor rationalizes that because women will have an abortion by any means available, we should keep it legal because it’s better that it’s done in an controlled, sterile environment.

What the doctor does not do is make the logical connection in regards to what the baby is and what abortion does.  Since abortion takes at least one life, I could make these arguments using the same logic:

  • We should have a place where criminals can take victims to have them killed, so that innocent bystanders aren’t hurt when they would spray gunfire into a crowd.
  • We should assist those that are going to commit suicide in doing the deed, because if they fail doctors and hospitals may have a tough time bringing the people back from the damage they’ve done to their body (since they would do it by any means available anyway).

Of course these two things are morally repugnant, but they use the same basic reasoning—it’s going to happen anyway.

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2 thoughts on “Fear and a Coat Hanger

  1. Min, the argument about coat hangers is not an argument from the pro-choice crowd to the pro-life crowd telling them why they should switch sides. The argument is an argument from the pro-choice crowd to the pro-choice crowd telling them why they should fight against pro-life legislation.

    If arguments like these weren’t made even if you did not think a fetus was a person you would have no reason to argue against the pro-life legislation because it would cause no negatives, but because arguments like this are made those who do not think a fetus is a person can point to these examples for reasons to argue against pro-life legislation, as it is now shown to have negatives.

  2. @Loc: Well, that’s not exactly what the referenced article said. This doctor was arguing that Roe v. Wade not be overturned. First, it’s not honest about what would happen– if Roe was overturned it would be left up to the states to decide. Certainly some states would be pro-life and some would be pro-choice (again, not much unlike the whole slavery question). So, abortion would not be immediately banned. In fact, some states I’m sure would embrace it further than the federal gov’t now allows it.

    But aside from that, the audience for this article and argument is multi-fold. Yes, it has the audience that you suggest. It’s also trying to address defectors– those that see the pro-life argument and see its merits.

    But regardless of your position on what the fetus is, my counter arguments hold against his primary argument…

    His primary argument is “Women will seek out any way to rid themselves of the fetus, and doctors and hospitals have seen coat hanger abortions.”

    My rebuttal is this: “That a person will chose to find a way does not justify us providing that way, especially if there’s a moral question there.”

    It is not enough to say “the woman will abort, we have to provide her a clean environment” any more than it is to say that “a man will inject drugs, so we must give them clean needles.”

    I see your point, and I’ll have to mull it through a little more– but the crux of your counter relies on the person believing something that is medically untrue (that the fetus is not a person).

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