Norma was a young twenty-something. She was poor and lived with her father. And she was pregnant… AGAIN! And already being 21 with two kids, she felt hopeless and depressed. At the time, the law forbade her from having the child aborted, unless she was raped. So she did what any desperate young adult would do; she went to the police and lied. But due to a lack of physical evidence, she was denied the “right” to abort her child…
It’s strange that at this moment in my life, I can really sympathize with Norma. Being around the same age as her, same financial desperation, and same failing feelings regarding life, I can see now more than ever why Norma would want to abort her child. She felt like she could barely support herself, and being pregnant meant not being able to work to support the family she already had as a single mother.
Dietrich spent sometime in America after finishing his doctoral work in his homeland – Germany. He worked at a church at the time, and made friends with the few people that would tolerate his poor English. He looked at the culture of America with ridicule – coming over in the 1930’s when racial prejudice was still at a high. He didn’t understand how human beings, whites and blacks, could treat each other so poorly. And Dietrich loved the gospel choirs of Black America!
Within several years, Dietrich didn’t know that he would only wish that his country had racial prejudice as mild as that in America. What Dietrich faced before him was far worse! The Fuhrer had black listed the Jews in Dietrich’s country. Close friends and colleagues had lost their jobs and were starting to disappear without a trace. Hitler was also using misguided quotes from Martin Luther, a prime historical figure of Germany, to make the people think that the Jews weren’t even human at all.
Dietrich Bonhoeffer would end up being killed by firing squad for his role in the conspiracy to kill Adolf Hitler. He was a theologian, and a pastor, and some would say a martyr. I look up to him because he was willing to speak up for the voiceless, and stand with few against the millions for something that he knew to be true.
Norma McCorvey, who most people probably know as Jane Roe, stood up for what she believed to be the right thing at the time. She went to court to fight for her right to choose abortion as an outcome for her child. The case Roe v. Wade was won on January 22, 1973 (though her baby was born during the trial and placed into adoption). Later, McCorvey would say that she was merely used by her attorneys to get what they wanted – a person who would allow them to challenge the state law.
And now millions of unborn children have died due to that outcome – abortion.
I wonder in another 40 years if we will look back and see the harm that we have caused our nation and the world. Abortion is no more a fight of religion as was the Holocaust. Abortion isn’t a matter of a woman’s right, but it is about the definition and importance of a human life.
I guess my favorite part of Norma McCorvey’s story is one of redemption. Now, 40 years after Roe v. Wade, McCorvey is a pro-life advocate. “I felt crushed under the truth of this realization. I had to face up to the awful reality. Abortion wasn’t about ‘products of conception’. It wasn’t about ‘missed periods’. It was about children being killed in their mother’s wombs. All those years I was wrong. Signing that affidavit, I was wrong. Working in an abortion clinic, I was wrong. No more of this first trimester, second trimester, third trimester stuff. Abortion — at any point — was wrong. It was so clear. Painfully clear.”