Of course, no one could ever accuse journalists in Northern Ireland of jumping on a bandwagon, but, just before the recent hysterical attacks on Jim Wells and Northern Ireland’s restrictions on abortion, the issue of rape was being used in the US to batter pro-life politicians there.
When the question of abortion following rape was put to Todd Akin, a Missouri Republican running for a seat in the Senate, his answer caused a firestorm of protest in the media. Overnight, he became the most hated man in America, while many of his terrified party colleagues panicked and threw off their pro-life principles in the mad rush to distance themselves from the controversy.
While the mainstream Republican Party claims to be pro-life, it has always tried to side-step hard questions by saying it approves of abortion in cases of rape or incest. Afterwards, Todd Akin apologised for his poor choice of words in responding to the question, but he refused to apologise for being pro-life. Mr Akin at least understands that you can’t have double standards when it comes to the sanctity of human life. If abortion hurts women and kills children, then it is inconsistent to argue for the right to life of some children in the womb whilst supporting the abortion of others.
No issue has been so ruthlessly exploited in the battle to legitimise abortion as the trauma of rape. Newspaper editors and abortionists claim the moral high ground and public compassion for rape victims is used to dehumanise innocent children before they are born. This is why the real stories of children conceived in rape and allowed to live have proven to be such a powerful defence of the unconditional right to life.
In the wake of the Todd Akin controversy, a man in the US called a radio show to talk about the subject from a perspective we usually don’t get to hear. His conversation with the host of the programme only lasted nine minutes but is well worth listening to.