What really struck me, however, as I was reading the Hastings Center piece (besides, of course, the hard-to-ignore fact that the authors were defending killing newborn infants, including those who weren't suffering yet, but probably would suffer in the future) is how ill prepared we are to respond to the arguments presented by the authors. It seems to me that the pro-life movement is somewhat behind the times in its approach to responding to the core principles of the Culture of Death, especially in its newest incarnations.
While much of the pro-life movement continues to desperately try to prove to the opposition that the fetus is human, by showing pictures of the unborn child, or proving that the fetus can feel pain, the whole pro-death movement has moved on. With the advent of embryonic research, immoral reproduction technologies, and now infant euthanasia, the pro-life movement has simply attempted to adopt and adapt old arguments for a whole new fight, which calls to mind that old Scripture quote about new wine in old wineskins.
"Human life," we point out time after time, "is a continuity that begins at conception and continues through to the moment of natural death, and since it is wrong to kill an adult, it is also wrong to kill a child, born or unborn."
But this just won't do any more.
The cameras inserted into the womb have proven beyond a doubt that the uterus is not a twilight zone that suddenly transforms a formless blob of inhuman tissue into a hearty, healthy baby at the moment of birth. And hence it is somewhat condescending to our opponents to assume that the they are just so plain stupid that they can't tell that the fetus looks, acts, and feels like a human, and is a human, albeit in its nascent stage of development.
What we seem to have failed to recognize, therefore, at least with the necessary clarity, is that the humanity or inhumanity of the fetus is often no longer the issue - at least, not within the elite spheres of the pro-death movement. The pro-death movement has evolved into a subtler, more radical, and much more dangerous form, a form that requires new intellectual weapons to fight.
Unfortunately, that is what we are up against today. Formulating an argument against the pro-death group, without hysteria and emotionalism, will be the only way to end this holocaust. They are cunning with their use of language. We need to learn from them, and take what is necessary to defeat them at their own game.