That’s my opinion upon seeing Donald Trump op-ed: My vision for a culture of life published today in the Washington Examiner.
Early this morning almost six hours before the above op-ed was online, I wrote the post Trump Is Silent On the Anniversary of Roe v. Wade. All the other candidates mentioned in that post, Ted Cruz, Marco Rubio, Jeb Bush, Rick Santorum, Carly Fiorina, and Ben Carson took the time on Friday to tweet, write, or speak on their pro-life convictions. I read two different columns yesterday, one written in the middle of the afternoon, and the other written about 5:00 that noted Trump’s silence. Today, lo and behold, Trump finally speaks out. Color me skeptical.
John McCormack noted Trump Publishes Op-Ed Critical of Roe v. Wade, Doesn’t Say If It Should Be Overturned. I noticed that Trump made no mention about SCOTUS justices he would appoint if elected. Nor was there any clarification on the issues McCormack raised in his column I quoted earlier today.
During the first Republican presidential debate, Trump explained that he “evolved” on the issue when he saw an unwanted child grow up to be a “total superstar.” Asked if he would have become pro-life if that child had been a loser instead of a superstar, Trump replied: “Probably not, but I’ve never thought of it.” In an interview last year, Trump was unclearabout whether he still thinks abortion should generally be legal in the first three months of pregnancy. Trump spokeswoman Hope Hicks has not replied to emails from TWS asking for clarification on these points.
In his op-ed Trump wrote:
Let me be clear — I am pro-life. I support that position with exceptions allowed for rape, incest or the life of the mother being at risk.
I’d like to refer you to a column by Matt Walsh that is one of the best columns I’ve read on the pro-life position on those three exceptions: Yes, I am Pro-Life Even in Cases of Rape and Incest. Here’s Why. Here are his bullet points, but I highly recommend reading all of his post.
…So here is the five step logical progression that explains why I am pro-life without exception:
2. Because unborn children are alive…
3. Because unborn children are human…
4. Because abortion is murder…
5. Because murder is wrong…
These five points are the foundation of the pro-life argument. Why do I make no exceptions? Because these apply to every baby ever conceived in the history of the universe. I make no exceptions because there aren’t any exceptions to be made. Remove any one of these points from the equation, and you are left with absolutely no reason to be against abortion.
Do you see why, then, it’s confusing and counterproductive when we attach exceptions to our anti-abortion views? If abortion should be OK before 20 weeks, or if the baby is conceived in rape or incest, then one of these five items must be negotiable. So which is it? When we say it’s acceptable to abort the baby conceived in rape, are we saying he isn’t human, or isn’t alive, or isn’t innocent, or that, in his case, killing the alive, innocent human isn’t wrong? Which part of our premise are we abandoning in order to be diplomatic? All of it?…
If you follow the pro-life movement, you also know that many adults who were conceived by rape have spoken out thanking their mothers who bore them. There have also been women who bore children conceived by rape who have spoken out..
Matt also pointed this out the following on the point Trump raised today about the life of the mother being at risk. (The fact Trump raised it indicates how little he knows of the pro-life movement).
When it comes to the life of the mother, it’s easy to grant no exception because abortion is never necessary to save a woman’s life. Sure, you might have a tragic scenario where the mother needs life saving treatment of some sort — like chemotherapy, if she’s diagnosed with cancer while pregnant — and the treatment is likely to kill the baby. What the woman decides in that situation is up to her, obviously, but if she decides to receive the treatment, she has not “aborted” her child. She is accepting a medical procedure that might result in the death of her child, but she is not killing the child directly. This is an essential distinction and one that every conservative should learn, understand, and communicate….
The pro-life movement has been burned before by those who say nice things about being pro-life, but when push comes to shove, they find excuses to retreat behind a wall of expediency and pragmatism and take no actions. Words are cheap–especially during a campaign. And Trump’s words don’t even clarify questions that have been raised about previous statements he has made.
I stand by what I said. I see absolutely no reason to believe that when the chips are down, Donald Trump is pro-life.
Photograph of baby at seven weeks from Images of Fetal Development: Priests For Life.