[ 1 ] The original carol text has
several more verses, and so I had continued the parody as
follows, though I omitted these additional verses from the
How silently, how silently,
A fetal life is gone!
God departs from hardened hearts,
And love thereby
Few eyes witness the horror
Found in this
deed of sin,
Where proud souls justify each death,
Each life that would have been.
Where children once
Each mother loved her child,
The fetus, so reviled.
And love held wide the door,
A dark night
wakes, and so forsakes
Some child for evermore.
[ 2 ] The
Jewish segment of this nominal Judeo-Christian ethos is also
divided according to political lines. Yet one reads "Whoever
destroys a soul, it is considered as if he destroyed an entire
world. And whoever saves a life, it is considered as if he saved
an entire world." [Jerusalem Talmud, Sanhedrin 4:8 (37a)] From
this tradition came the tag line for the advertisements for
Schindler's List, Oskar Schindler's quote, "Whoever saves
one life, saves the world entire." Jewish advocates of third
trimester abortion are hard pressed to reconcile this Talmudic
observation with a wholly political stance which effectively
overturns Jewish religious tradition.
More on this subject, the chief rabbis of Israel (Sephardi Chief
Rabbi Shlomo Amar and Ashkenazi Chief Rabbi Yona Metzger) in
this year have commented on abortion in Israel. the "halachic"
basis for the rabbis anti-abortion position is articulated in
Genesis 9:6 which reads: "Whoever sheds the blood of man, by man
shall his blood be shed; for in the image of God has God made
"The vast majority of abortions are unnecessary and strictly
forbidden according to halacha [Jewish law] because they
are carried out even when the pregnancies do not endanger the
mother's health," these rabbis have written in 2007.
The Christian world is equally divided in a great schism,
wherein the secular Christians easily argue the pro-choice
stance, especially when not considering its philosophic roots of
the nineteenth and early twentieth century eugenics movements.
Because the West's Judeo-Christian culture is dominated by two
major themes, Christianity and Marxism, I chose to comment as an
artist using powerful musical symbols from the nominal Christian
world. Given that "about one in five pregnancies worldwide end
in abortion," the challenge to those cultural and religious
Christians whose political stance is "pro-choice" is to explain
and rationalize the statistical fact stated by the World Health
Organization that twenty percent of all pregnancies are
terminated in induced abortions.
While the "caring" argument of the pro-choice stance suggests
that abortion makes women "safe," The Guttmacher Institute
further reports that "Complications due to unsafe abortion
procedures account for an estimated 13% of maternal deaths
worldwide, or 67,000 per year," and that "approximately
220,000 children worldwide lose their mothers every year from
abortion-related deaths." Given such facts, there is perhaps
a better approach in which rampant abortion is replaced by other
social actions which might further defend women's and children's
rights and health.
As to the Christian side of the so-called Judeo-Christian ethic,
one finds this reflection of the Talmudic commentary above: "Any
man's death diminishes me, because I am involved in Mankind; And
therefore never send to know for whom the bell tolls; it tolls
for thee." This text by John Donne, which I have set for
mezzo soprano, harpsichord and string quintet, titled
All is One.
Both Christians, Jews and Muslims allege faith in the
scriptures, and one serves all three in some way. From this set
of scriptural books, one can excerpt a number of quotes by which
to answer the assertion that a fetus is not a human life form,
as is asserted by the "pro-choice" argument.
Among several obvious texts worthy of citation is, "If men
strive, and hurt a woman with child, so that her fruit depart
from her, and yet no mischief follow: he shall be surely
punished, according as the woman's husband will lay upon him;
and he shall pay as the judges determine." [Exodus, 21:22]
The various translations all come to the same as the texts of
nostalgic Christmas carols, "woman with child." The fetus being
a child is a very different challenge that the fetus not being
A second challenge to religiously affiliated individuals comes
is this text, "Before I formed you in the womb, I knew you"
[Jeremiah 1:5]. Another translation offers the notion in this
manner, "Before I formed thee in the belly I knew thee; and
before thou camest forth out of the womb I sanctified thee, and
I ordained thee a prophet unto the nations."
For those affiliated with any of the religions noted above, to
include politicians as quoted below, the challenge is to
synthesize rather than ignore a passage suggesting that their
God could "know" or "form" a human in "the belly" or "womb."
This text refers to a human life in utero. Defining the
fetus as not human life in fact is to define away scriptural
statements upon which religious affiliation is supposed to rely.
Another text is equally problematic. Psalm 139:16 reads in part,
"thou hast covered me in my mother's womb." Another translation
in a lengthier except reads, "Thine eyes did see mine unformed
substance, and in Thy book they were all written--even the days
that were fashioned, when as yet there was none of them."
The convenience of the pro-choice argument to define away the
fetus as human life is without argument contrary to scriptural
statements as the above which speak of the "unformed substance"
as some form of the personal pronoun, "me." While the pro-choice
rhetoric about fetus specifically not being "human life" is
persuasive to many, these believing people have not truly
considered their own allegiance to their own religious tradition
founded on the books from which these quotes above have been
As to my notion that there are two dominant trends in the
Western Judeo-Christian culture, Christianity and Marxism, one
might well observe that the abolition of slavery and its
follow-on, segregation, came through actions of Christians like
Wilberforce(1759–1833) through to Martin Luther King, and that
the economic subjugation and massive open violence and conquest
of the twentieth century came through the National Socialists of
Germany, the Soviet Socialists of the USSR and the Maoist
socialists of China. Moreover among the recent holocausts was
the brutality of the socialist Pol Pot regime in Cambodia. All
these brutal regimes were inspired by Marxist thought and
theory, and the opposing trend throughout recent centuries has
been the Judeo-Christian trend, and its largest subset,
Christianity. One need note that an indisputable part of Marxism
was overt anti-religious stances and activities.
Moreover, Engels went as far as to assert in an attack on
"bourgeois" marriage that if men needed only to be concerned
with sex-love and no longer with property and inheritance, then
monogamy would come naturally. [The Origin of the Family,
Private Property and the State, 1884.] A favorite quote to
illustrate this established relativism is Engels' assertion, "Whatever
benefits some necessarily injures the others...."
Thus in many ways, the so-called attack on the family is a
fundamental part of Marxism' opposition to Christianity, Judaism
and other world religions. Returning therefore to Oskar
Schindler and the notion that "Whoever saves one life, saves the
world entire," one can turn this on its rhetorical head and
suggest that the socialist notion of the state having
predominance over the family might well destroy the "world
entire." Certainly the history of savagery triggered by
socialism in its various militant twentieth-century forms is
evidence of this, and the softer socialism as practiced in
justifying and massive funding of abortion is contributing to
the decline in various populations, evidencing a demographic
fall towards societal destruction.
Those who stand on one side in this societal debate and advocate
coerced government funding of what is now very inexpensive birth
control available at most any pharmacy evidence their view that
a fetus is not human. This is the ethical statement when a fetus
may be killed in utero while so many call "ethically" for
the abandonment of a state-coerced death penalty as well as for
the abandonment of all war based of an ethical stand against
killing, per se.
The casual and modern notion of "harvesting" from fetal tissue
for science is termed by some "ethical." Yet exposing this
openly causes consternation for those who would defend an
ethical decision, but not have it and its outcomes detailed.
One reads an opinion: "This week, pro-life activists
published a three-hour video of Planned Parenthood's top doctor
talking about the exchange of fetal organs that are extracted
from women during abortion. 'We've been very good at getting
heart, lung, liver, because we know that, so I'm not gonna crush
that part,' Dr. Deborah Nucatola tells her lunch guests,
undercover activists who posed as members of a biologics
startup. 'I'm gonna basically crush below, I'm gonna crush
above, and I'm gonna see if I can get it all intact'." In
"Tissue of lies: Why liberals and the media are in denial about
the Planned Parenthood video," by Michael Brendan Dougherty, The
Week, 17 July 2015.
The parts business is open for business, and prices are
dickered. Killing for profit creates a product as its the end
result in this new and enlightened world.
One reads, as but one example: "Fetal Liver CD133+
Stem/Progenitor Cells (FL-CD133) are positively selected from
homogenized liver tissue. First, fetal liver tissue is
enzymatically digested and further processed to generate a
leukocyte-rich suspension. CD133+ cells are then positively
selected from the leukocyte-rich suspension using immunomagnetic
anti-CD133 microbeads, leaving highly purified fetal liver
CD133+ cells." In "Fetal Liver – CD133+ Stem/Progenitor
Cells, $2,425–$24,250," Stem Express web page, accessed July
2015. Some detail for "fresh" reads: "Fresh FL0300F, 0.5
million/vial, $3,031; FL0301F, 1 million/vial, $6,062; FL0302F,
2 million/vial, $12,124."
Hurry! Hurry! Get your fresh fetus parts! Step right up!
In accordance with the promises of some prominent socialists as
history records their sentiments, it will all be accomplished
In a kindly manner
'I'm gonna basically crush below, I'm gonna crush above, and I'm
gonna see if I can get it all intact." So has it been planned.
[ 3 ]
"Holocaust" stems from the Greek through Middle English, the
word being of two parts and referring to sacrifice in the form
of a burnt sacrifice. The ovens of Nazi concentration camps all
too vividly prove the linguistic truth of the word, now often
used with reference to burning alone. The Cambodian genocide,
for example, is often referred to as a holocaust as well, and
some anti-abortion advocates openly term rampant abortion in the
West a holocaust. For more on the implications of this, see my
comments and especially the footnotes to
The Margaret Sanger Song.
[ 4 ]
Among the modern politicians who have spoken on this matter is
presidential candidate and former First Lady, Hillary Clinton.
In an address to New York State Family Planning Providers
(January 24, 2005) she states, "I believe we can all recognize
that abortion in many ways represents a sad, even tragic choice
to many, many women." She added, "The fact is that the best way
to reduce the number of abortions is to reduce the number of
unwanted pregnancies in the first place."
Senator Clinton said, "Being pro-choice is not being
pro-abortion. Being pro-choice is trusting the individual to
make the right decision for herself and her family, and not
entrusting that decision to anyone wearing the authority of
government in any regard" [Remarks at the National Abortion and
Reproductive Rights Action League, Washington, D. C., Jan 22,
This betrays a linguistic parlor trick, as NARAL identifies
itself as an "abortion rights" league, and for the approximately
one million American women and 45 million women worldwide who
"choose" abortion each year, in the moment that the choice is
made for -- the Latin for this preposition is "pro" -- these
women and those who support the decision are most assuredly
pro-abortion. This linguistic manipulation is an attempt to
avoid the simple language and logic which pro-choice advocates
seek to obscure. Moreover public financial support of abortion
is in fact pro-abortion, for all public funding is intended to
engender "more" of that which it funds, such as education,
public safety and the like.
If indeed abortion is a "sad, even tragic choice" as Senator
Clinton argued, the enthusiastic political support for it
conflicts with her characterization of it. Given the
"replacement rate" for Western nations' populations falling
precipitously, it seems that abortion for any and all reasons
might be sound from the justification of "personal choice," but
it is fast becoming a "sad, even tragic" element in declining
populations -- also the stated goal of Malthusians and those
whose credo is the unfounded fear of "population explosion." One
only need examine the demographic forecasts for many Western
European nations to examine the consequences of such thinking,
wherein the survival of the individual mother -- in Darwinian
terms -- is fast becoming a proof of the "unfit" nature of many
Western nations' societies.
Among the arguments for abortion is that it is "safe," as is
"safe sex." The statistics belie this, for "it is estimated that
68,000 women—seeking to terminate pregnancies—die from unsafe
abortion every year, and millions more suffer complications. Of
the estimated 210 million pregnancies that occur every year,
about 46 million end in induced abortion; more than 18 million
of these abortions are performed under unsafe circumstances
every year...." [World Health Report 2005. Geneva: WHO. ] The
report concludes further that in "...many countries, the law
remains silent about harmful traditional practices such as FGM
[female genital mutilation], child marriage and sex-selective
It is an odd twist in the broad dialogue over abortion worldwide
that feminists are now challenged by "sex selection" abortion,
and the gay and lesbian activists are being confronted by some
research suggesting that "sexual orientation selection" might
also become a reality, wherein former avid "pro-choice"
advocates of abortion are now confronting being "anti-abortion,"
when applied as "sexual orientation" selection. Whatever, the
issue is remarkably complex, and simple slogans do not serve to
advance a civilized dialogue.
Whatever ones politics, it is hoped that most -- like Clinton's
remarks above -- find the choice to abort "sad" and "even
tragic." More sadly, there are some avid pro-choice advocates
whose politics is for population reduction on
ecological/environmental grounds as well as on Malthusian
prophecies of worldwide disaster. For them human rights are
As to Christmas, Christians who support abortion even through to
partial birth terminations, and those who speak of the
"unwanted" child, I would remind that among the Western Canon's
greatest Christmas stories is Charles Dickens' A Christmas
Carol. In it, comes this exchange as he is asked to donate
to the poor during the time of Christmas:
"I wish to be left alone," said Scrooge. "Since you ask me
what I wish, gentlemen, that is my answer. I don't make
merry myself at Christmas and I can't afford to make idle
people merry. I help to support the establishments I have
mentioned--they cost enough; and those who are badly off
must go there."
"Many can't go there; and many would rather die."
"If they would rather die," said Scrooge, "they had
better do it, and decrease the surplus population.
Besides--excuse me--I don't know that."
"Decrease the surplus population." So wrote Dickens in the mouth
of the unrepentant, unsympathetic Scrooge. Those who advocate
massive funding for abortion are advocating exactly what this
Christmas "carol" advocated through the words of a character
whose heart was hardened and whose change of heart was the theme
of this seminal story. Senator Clinton, as noted above, calls
abortion "sad" and "tragic" but nowhere manages to come to the
conclusion that a nation should not support it.
At what point in Scrooge's storyline trajectory is she and
others like her then? It is a fair question which will not be
answered until the Ghosts of Unwanted Children Past come to
enact a new Christmas carol, like unto the Dickens' A
Christmas Carol. Until then, I find such as these Three
Abortion Carols quite apt.
[ 5 ]
Medea killed her own children by Jason and escaped in a chariot
sent by either Helios, god of the sun or Hecate, said to be
Medea's mother. In Euripides' retelling of this Greek myth
(circa 431 BC.), Medea exclaims, "It never shall be said that I
have left / My children for my foes to trample on." For this
mother, the murder of her own children was a political and
personal statement at the same time.
Throughout history and in literature the murderous mother has
been a recurring theme, with such entertainments as Wife,
Mother, Murderer (1991), an American drama film, directed by
Mel Damski, or the news stories and books about Susan Smith (b.
1971) who was convicted in 1995, of murdering her two sons,
3-year-old and 14-month-old sons. The image of woman as nurturer
is only half the story, and it is left to those who would
advocate unrestricted abortion and yet find these Three
Abortion Carols offensive to explain their advocacy in terms
of their religious affiliation.