As a renewed abortion debate rages across the nation, Mary Meehan came to Cornell to discuss defending the unborn. A journalist and investigative reporter, Meehan explained the issue in a lecture titled “Why Liberals Should Defend the Unborn.”
She started by explaining that abortion was first legalized to try to give the poor more opportunity. The minority birth rate began to rise rapidly in the 60s and, as where the rich had the resources to support their children, the minorities could not afford to do so.
“The left fell for this, hook, line and sinker,” Meehan said.
After Brown v. the Board of Education, liberals looked at the court as being on their side, she said. Because of this, after the court decided Roe v. Wade, liberals went along with the decision.
“It is out of character for the left to not protect the weak and the helpless,” who in this case are the unborn children, Meehan said. “I think the left should be on the pro-life side.”
Meehan looks at abortion as a major violation of human rights. She believes that many people today who abort their children do so as “an escape from an obligation to another person.”
She praised the influence religion has on the issue, although she says one should not solely rely on the religious perspective. Religion for the most part is on the pro-life side, but many of their theories were developed before modern science, she said. Science has developed enough now to prove that abortion kills a living being.
Religion will still be an important figure in overcoming abortion, though, Meehan explained. Many of the social movements in the past were religiously motivated, and the pro-life movement may be the next.
Despite the importance of religion, “the government can’t stay neutral on this issue,” Meehan said.
She explains that the government is what decides whether to close or open abortion clinics and whether or not to send the police to stop abortions from occurring.
When asked about where politics is headed with the abortion issue, Sandra Czelusniak ’07, president of the Cornell Coalition for Life, said, ” To be honest, I don’t know what is going to happen. We don’t know exactly how Samuel Alito and John Roberts are going to vote.”
Meehan said abortion is another type of warfare. She compared their use of weapons to brutalize people. The major difference between the two is that abortion “only kills civilians.”
When faced with the option of aborting a child, Meehan recommended that one ask themselves, “Isn’t there a better solution?”
She explained that many more options now exist, such as better adoption programs, that were not available thirty years ago.
Meehan closed her lecture by urging liberals to make the defense of life a part of their lives.
“If you have saved one life, it is as if you have saved the world,” she said.
When asked about how the lecture went, Hannah Maxson ’07 said, “I was impressed. I think she made a strong case of why it isn’t [just] a political issue and why people from both sides should be involved in the issue.”