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The Wrong Side of History

One of my fellow workers at our Genocide Awareness Project display is a woman named Jacinta. The Genocide Awareness Project (GAP) uses graphic images of Genocide throughout history and compares them to graphic photos of abortion today. Jacinta mentioned to a student at East Tennessee State University, where we set up our GAP display, that most humans do not fall on “the right side of history.” College students don’t like the thought that they may be on the wrong side of history, but Jacinta is absolutely correct in her evaluation of humanity. We can usually see the sins of others, but we use the same arguments of generations gone by to justify the evil in our generation.

One female student at App State in Boone, NC, balked at the graphic images of African-Americans lynched in the southern United States and the dead bodies of Jews from the Holocaust and said, “I think we are past that today.” But I pointed at the dismembered arms of a baby’s body in the following picture. I said, “We are using the same dehumanizing language that the Nazis used to justify abortion today. Genocide is harder to see when it is happening in our generation.”

Another East Tennessee State University female student told me she was politically a “moderate.” I asked her what she thought of our display. Did we fit in her “moderate” category? She grimaced and said, “No. I don’t like this. And I don’t see how you can compare abortion to genocide.” I explained to her that the genocides throughout history had been made possible by convincing ourselves that the group we want to eliminate is less than human. The Jews in Nazi Germany were “subhuman”; the Hutus called the Tutsis “Cockroaches!” and “Snakes!” You can step on a cockroach, and you can kill a snake. By dehumanizing these people, their enemies created a perceived moral space to treat them as animals. “We are doing the same thing to babies in the human by not acknowledging that they are humans.” This student had no answer in reply. There is no moderate position on abortion.

A Jewish male student at App State said he disagrees with me about abortion but thinks we should agree to disagree. I asked him if he would be okay with me enslaving people. Would we agree to disagree about slavery, or would he oppose my enslaving people? He said he would oppose it. But he didn’t want to take the logic any further. I should have asked him if he were okay with me being a Nazi who exterminated Jews! There is no moderate position on these issues. You either condone evil or oppose it. The “moderate” position on abortion is on the wrong side of history, and future generations will condemn it.

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