Catholic Medical Quarterly Volume 67(4) November 2017
The Pro-Life Apologetics Manual
By Angelo Stagnaro,
Hope and Life Press 2017. (18 July 2017)
Also on Kindle
The author of this superb work is an award-winning journalist. The book presents 119 top myths about abortion and detailed arguments against them by use of science, philosophy and, when required, theology. Above all else the arguments are logical and any fair minded person will be open to persuasion. The arguments are presented in a clear and concise manner. The book is easy to read.
I finished the book with the strong impression that being pro-life
means being pro-woman. The idea that the unborn child is in a state of
perpetual conflict with the mother is a myth conjured up by
pro-abortionists. Women need to have the support of a culture to help them
have the child, says the author.
Apart from abortion, other topics include artificial contraception, Natural Family Planning and genetic screening.
Is abortion amoral? No, says the author. The intentional killing of an innocent human being is always a moral decision. Does life start at birth? No, at conception there is a human being with a distinct, unchanging and unrepeatable genetic code. The author also notes that a disproportionate number of female unborn children are aborted: why aren't the feminists protesting?
Surely, legal abortion means the end of thousands of women dying from backstreet abortion? No, maternal deaths were significantly reduced well before abortion was legalized. So where did the figure of 5000 to 10000 deaths come from. The great Dr Bernard Nathanson, abortion doctor turned pro-life, said that the pro-abortionists made the figure up in order to get what they wanted.
But surely the embryo is nothing more than a clump of cells? But then so is an adult man or woman. Better still, from conception we are a self-integrating organism capable of directing our process of maturation. In layman's term, absolutely unique individuals.
But we need abortion because the child is unwanted? This myth reminds me of the day I asked a woman who wanted an abortion whether she would consider adoption. Her response was: "But I would hate to lose my baby." As the author says, there are plenty of people out there who want these children.
Are pro-abortionists interested in democracy? If they are, they would do away with late abortion and abortion for social reasons. If they seriously wanted to keep abortion legal only in cases of rape, they will do away with 99.5% of abortions taking place now.
Thanks to this book, I got to know about what is happening in the United States, about the huge numbers of abortion doctors involved in criminal activities. Abortion dehumanizes all those involved. There have been cases of militant pro-abortionists falsely accusing pro-lifers of assault and of the manager of an abortion clinic who planted a fake bomb in the clinic and then accused pro-life activists of having done so. None of this is to be found in the mainstream media.
We need to keep ourselves informed. This book is highly recommended for both personal formation and for training in groups.
Reviewed by Pravin Thevathasan