Double standards

Written by Tom Waseleski on .

I take exception to John Lewandowski's statement that Sister Margaret McBride "excommunicated herself" by performing an abortion to save a woman's life ("She Did It Herself," June 4 letters). I've read the whole story online, and the chances of survival, if the pregnancy went to term, were zero for both mother and child. Either way, the fetus -- which, unlike its mother, didn't yet know it was alive or what it had to lose by dying -- would have died. But at least the abortion saved the mother's life.

What about a case of conjoined twins, where only one can be saved by separation, but both would die without it? Would Mr. Lewandowski oppose separation? What if you had to shoot someone dead to keep him from killing you or an innocent third person? Would that be a mortal sin? What about the soldier who shoots enemy soldiers to save his people? Mass murderer? Somehow, I don't think so.

The church allows for the concept of defense and "just war," and it should end its double standard when it comes to "the unborn" -- as if their existence mattered more than that of the already-born. In an ideal world, physicians and others would "save life without the direct and intentional taking of another life," but sometimes that simply isn't possible. On Earth -- as opposed to in heaven -- one must sometimes pick the lesser of evils.



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