So I've been through a bit of feels lately. As most of you know, two movies have come out recently dealing with the subject of abortion. This first is Gosnell: The Trial of America's Biggest Serial Killer. The second is Unplanned. Both of these are good movies, rare for Christian movies, and shocking given that the people who made Unplanned also made God's Not Dead. For those of you unfamiliar with the subjects.
Kermit Gosnell ran an abortion clinic in Philadelphia in the inner city. His clinic was filthy and covered in cat feces, among other things. Staff were administering drugs and procedures without so much as a nursing license, as Gosnell didn't actually spend a lot of time at the clinic. An investigation started by a narcotics detective (Dean Cain in the movie) led to the discovery that many babies were born alive from their dilated mothers while they were waiting for him to show up. When he did show up, he would simply 'snip' the baby's spinal cord at the base of the neck. Further investigations revealed that the unsanitary conditions and downright dangerous practices at his clinic (at least one woman who came in for an abortion died) went on for so long because the state neglected to inspect it. One of the more touching stories was a poor girl who changed her mind on the table. Gosnell yelled at her and left her dilated and in the stirrups for, IIRC, over half an hour. She had a miscarriage, but the child survived and is in Kindergarten today. Gosnell was convicted for the murder of the born alive babies and cut a deal for life without parole (instead of death) on the condition that he not appeal the conviction.
Unplanned is about Abby Johnson, founder of "And Then There Were None," an organization dedicated to getting abortion workers out of the industry. She grew up a Southern Baptist and, like many young people, went astray and started having sex before marriage. Her contraceptive failed and she got an abortion, but never told anybody. In college, she continued to say she was pro-life for a long time, but was recruited as a Planned Parenthood volunteer on the lie that Planned Parenthood actually tries to reduce abortions and provides services to women. She went on to a) have another abortion, this one chemical (ru486) and b) become one of the youngest PP clinic directors in history. She did terrible things at that clinic, but in 2009, she was asked to assist a visiting physician in an abortion. Uncommon for the industry, this doctor used an ultrasound so he could see what he was doing (they usually just keep the vacuum on until they think there's enough blood and tissue in the jar), and she was told to operate the ultrasound. What she saw was a fully formed human (about the size of your hand) fight and struggle to try to avoid the probe, but 'there was nowhere to go,' and piece by piece, that baby was sucked through a small tube. The spine was the last to go. She went to the local pro-life charity that day and quit a week later. Today, she has something like 8 kids (IIRC, one of them was adopted from a mother who wanted to abort).
It wasn't these movies that woke me up, though. Their effect was amplified by seeing my own son on ultrasound. At an age so young that even the most wishy-washy pro-abortion advocate would argue that this isn't a person, I saw arms, legs, a face, a heart, a spine, ribs, even little fingers and toes, and I felt a wave of love and emotion come over me that I lack the words to articulate. Before that moment, I was intellectually against abortion. I excused my silence and inaction on the idea that there was nothing I could do about it, when I really just didn't care enough to do more than debate the point with friends and vote for allegedly pro-life politicians (who somehow never get around to putting a dent in, say, federal funding of Planned Parenthood). Every case of abortion I have heard since then makes me tear up, and sometimes openly weep. When watching the depiction of Unplanned, I lost it at the opening scene, thinking they used recorded ultrasound footage from a real abortion, felt some relief when I found out it was CGI, then wept again when I realized that the reality is probably worse.
In the past few months, I've seen the testimonies of so many more than Abby Johnson (though I'd heard of her before the movie when she appear on Louder with Crowder). I've seen the testimonies of Jill Stanek, Carol Everett, Linda Couri, Patricia Sandoval (that one was the hardest), and Dr. Anthony Levatino, as well as speeches by people like Lila Rose, Ben Shapiro, and others talk about it, but none of those people have had the passion in what they say that I hear from people who have been in the middle of it. I'm probably hitting the character limit. More to come.