The Pope departed from his prepared remarks during his weekend address to the Forum of Family Association by denouncing abortion as a solution to possible congenital disabilities – and dropped a Nazi reference in the process.
Those familiar with Godwin’s law know that if a conversation goes on long enough, it’s nigh inevitable that someone will make a Hitler or Nazi comparison. Generally speaking, it’s a bad idea. Calling someone Hitler or a Nazi is almost never an effective way of making a point, but that doesn’t change the fact that those on the left are particularly – and ironically – quite fond of it. But in this case, was Pope Francis correct? Let’s look at the facts.
Qualifying the Claim
“It is fashionable, or at least usual, that when in the first few months of a pregnancy doctors do studies to see if the child is healthy or has something, the first idea is: ‘Let’s send it away.’ We do the same as the Nazis to maintain the purity of the race, but with white gloves on.”
The Nazis attempted to purge humanity of all they deemed inferior in the name of racial purity. As Pope Francis pointed out, that included those with chronic illnesses, birth defects, and other disabilities. He raises an excellent question: How are pregnant women who choose to terminate their pregnancies for the same reason – or the doctors who perform the procedure – any different?
As previously explained at Liberty Nation, it comes down to when a child becomes a person. Is that at conception, at birth, sometime in between, or sometime significantly later? The question is not a biological one – no matter how some pro-abortion advocates might want it to be – as there isn’t a definition of life that applies to all animals, plants, fungi, bacteria, etc. that doesn’t also cover the human zygote.
The question isn’t even when do the unborn become humans, as the DNA of the single-celled organism formed immediately after fertilization is the same as it will be at birth and even at death, potentially many decades later.
Only two questions allow the pro-abortion advocate any wiggle room. When does a human organism become a human person? When does this new person gain the same human rights as others? In examining these questions, we discover that the same rationalizations are used for abortion as any other form of ethnic cleansing.
Is this surprising? It shouldn’t be. The progenitors of today’s pro-abortion movement were eugenicists who argued that the lives of the disabled – amongst others – had no value. Their sentiments were disturbingly similar to those of the Nazis, and some even had direct ties to Hitler and others in his administration.
Quantifying the Claim
But while abortionists may be just as despicable as the Nazis in their values, they are far worse when one considers the respective body counts. There is no definitive list of every life taken by either. However, the most recent estimates credit Hitler and his followers with the deaths of 20 million victims. Had the war gone differently, you can be assured the Nazis would have done far worse, but they were stopped. Not to take away from the evil of the Holocaust or downplay the suffering and loss of life, but that is over and has been for a long time.
Abortion, on the other hand, has been allowed to continue since that unfortunate Supreme Court ruling back in 1973 – perfectly legal and, for many, socially acceptable. The National Right to Life Committee counts more than 60 million abortions since that case in the United States alone. Granted, this group is obviously anti-abortion. So if you’d prefer a more conservative estimate from a pro-abortion organization, consider the Guttmacher Institute’s opinion.
According to a 2012 PolitiFact article examining U.S. Representative Chris Smith’s “over 54 million abortions since 1973” claim – which they rated as mostly true – Guttmacher had tracked about 49.3 million abortions through 2008. But they called the National Right to Life Committee’s estimate of around 1.2 million per year reasonable. This put a reasonable estimate at almost 53 million – six years ago.
The CDC does track abortions as they’re reported, but also admits that reporting is incomplete, as it isn’t mandatory. According to their 2014 data, 652,639 pregnancies were reported as voluntarily terminated in the U.S. In 2015, the CDC lists the top two causes of death as heart disease and cancer, claiming 633,842 and 595,930 lives respectively. If their list included abortion, as it should, heart disease would fall to second place.
U.S. abortionists alone have terminated around three times as many lives as Hitler’s Nazis, and there’s no end in sight. Pope Francis was correct in his assessment of the values of both groups, but he sorely sold abortionists short by not examining the quantity of kills. A look at the numbers reveals the chilling truth: Hitler and his ilk can’t live up to the accomplishments of the modern American left.