Steve Chapman’s Terrible Parallels

POLITICS & POLICY

The columnist uses various analogies to try to justify exposing unborn children to lethal violence. All of them are inapposite.

We would not legally require a father to give up his liver to save his child, or force people to donate kidneys to others who need them, because we typically value bodily integrity and autonomy. So, too, Chapman argues, we should not “force women to go through pregnancy and give birth.”

In none of the analogies, however, is anyone taking an action or even refusing to perform an action in order to kill someone else. Killing someone else is neither the goal of the non-donors nor their means of achieving a goal. In the vast majority of abortions, stopping the life of a human organism is both means and end. That is why many people believe abortion should generally be banned while nobody has ever seriously maintained that every effort to save someone’s life should be legally required.

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Ramesh Ponnuru is a senior editor for National Review, a columnist for Bloomberg Opinion, a visiting fellow at the American Enterprise Institute, and a senior fellow at the National Review Institute.

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