A lot of pro-lifers, myself included, come to the movement through the path of religion. However, there are many people who oppose abortion for purely secular or practical reasons. In order to have useful discussion with dissenters, it’s important to have reasons other than religious beliefs for choosing life. Here are just three examples of non-religious ideals or beliefs people can hold that may lead them to choose life.
1. Each Person’s Intrinsic Value
The anti-bullying movement, which is largely heralded and controlled by the left, has successfully earned the emotional support of the nation. A big part of this is promoting the individual value of the people who are harmed. However, the anti-bullying movement often takes this to the extreme.
Conservatives should really jump in and take it to combine with the pro-life movement. Anti-bullying advocates argue that we don’t have the right to determine whose life has value, whether they are socially deemed “weird” or not. Pro-life advocates can extend that: we don’t have the right to choose whose life has value inside the womb.
Regardless of the circumstances of one’s conception or birth, each life is important. You don’t kneed to be part of a religious tradition to believe in that idea.
2. Regrets from Abortion
Yes, having a baby at the age of 16 is hard. Yes, it does change your life in a way you might not expect. But no, it doesn’t ruin everything.
There are countless stories written about women who have had abortions, sharing their experiences. While some women claim to have no regrets, others clearly do. The emotional toll that abortion takes on them for years to follow is absolutely heartbreaking. Even women who are pro-choice will admit to regretting having an abortion. For a lot of women who are later infertile, the idea that they intentionally gave up their chance at motherhood is heartbreaking.
These stories offer us real insight into the human cost of abortion. Encouraging women to do something harmful that they may later regret is a huge problem. Further, it’s one that secular folks can very readily understand.
3. Scientific Facts
For those of us who value logic over emotion, scientific proof that a baby is a living being is among the most obvious reasons for being pro-life.
At the age of 10, I read a story about a woman who had been convinced that the baby was simply a clump of cells. Doctors offered her an abortion before even hearing other options, and she saw her baby’s hands and feet as it was carried out of the room.
This idea, however, is false. A baby is a baby from conception. The human heartbeat starts at 22-23 days. All other major organs are developing by the ninth week of pregnancy. The science behind human development is a big source of support for the pro-life movement, one that doesn’t require faith to get behind.
To quote a great leader, Ronald Reagan, “I’ve noticed that everyone who is for abortion has already been born.” Just as we have the privilege to the lives we live, it’s imperative to preserve that right for future generations. There are far more reasons than the three above, but I find these to be the most effective for building secular support for the pro-life movement.