North Dakota, Amendments, and Christian Courage

ND quarterToday, March 22, the North Dakota legislature has sent to voters an amendment to its state constitution requiring that “the inalienable right to life of every human being at any stage of development must be recognized and protected.” The amendment will appear on the ballot in November of 2014.

If approved by the voters, the amendment would effectively ban abortions in North Dakota, likely with no exceptions for rape or incest. Some birth control methods could be affected as well.

Certainly this vote will be contested hotly over the next year and a half, and much demagoging will be engaged as opponents will claim a lack of compassion for rape and incest victims and most certainly will suggest all sorts of awful consequences, especially for women. We have seen it before. Already, Huffington Post is assuming that this amendment would rule out abortions to save the life of the mother. Yet this amendment does not raise the protection of one life above another and certainly nowhere raises the life of the child above that of the mother.

If the amendment passes anyway, then the lawsuits will ensue, demanding that the federal courts overturn the heinous infringement upon freedom as an affront to the hallowed interpretation of the US Constitution given in Roe v Wade by a split Supreme Court.

This small, pro-life state is in a tough spot. In fact, it is a spot in which most Christians in America do not want to be. That spot is having to decide whether rape or incest trumps the life of an unborn baby. Are Christians in 2013 ready to say that abortion is wrong, even in rape and incest? The discussion will be intense. The results will be historic. We will talk about it along the way.

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