In the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, several politicians have emerged as ardent supporters of vulnerable human life. One notable example is New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo. Under his leadership, New York has mobilized to protect its citizens from the fatal impacts of the virus. He has become a champion of the sick, the elderly and the vulnerable in New York. I commend his efforts in this regard.
However, as he aggressively leads the front in combating the outbreak of COVID-19 in New York State, his actions to protect the sick and elderly contradict his record and treatment of the most vulnerable population group of all: preborn children.
In regard to COVID-19, Gov. Cuomo has said that the choice between life and the economy is a "false choice" or really no choice at all. He has said that New Yorkers will not accept the premise that "human life is dispensable." He has pledged to "fight every way we can to save every life that we can."
I applaud these pro-life statements. But I ask him: Is not the decision of whether or not to value the lives of the preborn also a false choice? Our mothers, our sisters, our brothers and our grandparents are not expendable. But neither are our preborn children.
Abortion is the leading cause of death in the United States, amounting to 1 out of every 3 deaths per day. And New York state consistently has the highest abortion rate in the country. In 2017, over 105,000 preborn children lost their lives to abortion in New York. In New York City alone, 1 in every 3 pregnancies is terminated by abortion. These numbers are staggering.
So far, there have been about 58,000 deaths from COVID-19 in the U.S. This is a truly sobering number. We grieve the loss of these precious human lives.
As we consider the gravity of this loss, we must also realize that the death toll from COVID-19 in the U.S. over the course of several months is equal to the number of deaths from abortion in about 20 days.
Last year, Gov. Cuomo signed into law the Reproductive Health Act, an abortion bill that practically guarantees the loss of more lives to abortion in New York state than ever before. How can he fight to protect the lives of some, yet enable the death of thousands more?
With his words, Gov. Cuomo has rightly rejected the idea that "human life is dispensable." But this must also extend to preborn children who are, scientifically and medically, also human lives. Our government must protect them and advocate for them in the same way it has done for potential victims of COVID-19. Anything less sets the dangerous precedent that some lives are more valuable than others.
The fact of the matter is that every human being is made in the image of God, is valuable and has a right to life. Human life is extraordinary, and all human beings have intrinsic value, including a baby in the womb.
The abortion industry purposefully targets, exploits and profits on hurting women, using deceptive messages such as that abortion is their only option or that abortion will not have any long-term effects on their quality of life. The destructive impacts of abortion on relationships; the family; a person's mental, physical and spiritual health; and the fabric of society are incalculable.
A woman should never feel as though she must have an abortion in order to achieve a fulfilling life. We must come alongside women facing unplanned pregnancy, supporting them with a network of life-affirming resources.
I implore Gov. Cuomo to consider the gravity of his example and to give the same passion, money, resources and attention to victims of abortion that he gives to victims of COVID-19. To do otherwise is to practice selective human valuation and selective human discrimination, which he has publicly condemned.
As our entire country reflects on the value of human life in the midst of a pandemic, I pray that our nation's leaders will expand their actions to protect human dignity to include all vulnerable populations, including those in the womb.
Brian Fisher is president of Human Coalition, a life-affirming health care organization that provides for and promotes the empowerment of women, children and the betterment of society. Human Coalition serves tens of thousands of women each year and has rescued over 16,000 children from the practice of abortion.
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