If you are an older reader you know that the term gay wasn’t always about sexual preferences. At one point in time it meant happy, or brightly colored.
The word now days is so easily conflated with sexual preference it is unwise to use it when referring to someone’s clothes.
The word tolerant used to mean that you disagree with or dislike something a person does, but you will treat them with respect anyway. Now according to the younger generation it means agree with politically correct dogma 100%, or be branded as a hate monger.
The word pro-life has been poisoned in much the same way. Many people when they hear the term pro-life, they don’t hear that babies deserve the right to life, they hear that you hate woman, that woman should die in back alley abortions, that you are a dictator…. The term isn’t half as useful as it used to be. While replacing a word with an entire phrase isn’t practical all of the time, I believe that as often as possible it should be replaced with “Preserve as many innocent human lives as possible”.
One confusion people have with the term pro-life is that many of us also believe in the right to keep and bare arms, and believe that we are being inconsistent. But it is perfectly consistent with the term protect as many innocent human lives as possible. You see when someone breaks into your house, it is often a choice of kill or be killed. You see the intruder if they get away with stealing everything you have and maybe even killing you, they are unlikely to stop there. The will often continue committing the horrible crime until someone either kills him, or locks him up for a long time. If you are forced to defend yourself and your family, you are likely protecting their lives, and the lives of further victims so you are being perfectly consistent.
You don’t want woman having back street abortions any more than the people who made heroine illegal want others to take back-alley drugs. While yes there are still illegal drugs on our street, there are many more lives that have been saved because they could not get the drug legally.
Changing the terms used can clear up any societal misconceptions, or at least invite conversations that culturally poisoned words would not.
If you have any suggestions for changing a politically hot term, or any questions about my reasons for believing that abortion is wrong, please comment below.
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The Case for Life: Equipping Christians to Engage the Culture
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