Technology and the Pro-Choice Movement: A Falling Out


Last night, during the Super Bowl, a football game, chatter on Twitter was about…abortion? A hilarious Doritos ad–one of the only funny ones–presented a very typical experience for most American soon-to-be parents: the ultrasound.

The 30 second spot caused a ruckus on social media among pro-choice groups who found it tasteless to “humanize” the fetus:

However, the scene in that Doritos ad was something that millions of Americans have experienced first hand. Whether they realized it or not, NARAL and other pro-choice outrage was not so much against Doritos–but against ultrasound technology.

Best of Friends.

Since the turn of the twentieth century, technology has been a best bud to proponents of abortion as advancement in contraceptives, reproductive technologies, and cleaner abortion procedures have advanced the taming of the uterus.

On the preventative front, technological and medical advancement have brought higher percentage contraceptive protection, less side affects, and sex without the unfortunate consequence of conception (both inside and outside of marriage). Additionally, Plan B options have become more easily accessible for those “morning after” regrets. A woman’s ability to regulate her body’s hormone levels, her ovulation schedule (or prevention of such), and her risk of pregnancy have all been helped vastly by technological advances.

The progressive march of the medical lab has seen the rise of IVF, petri dish conception, and freezer-fulls of frozen embryos–nearly an entire generation of children hoping for the slim chance to continue their lives. Scientists have turned conception into a sterile series: extraction, injection, and implantation.

This too has furthered the pro-choice movement by making it appear that human reproduction is generally no different from any other animal. If human life can be produced in the lab, certainly the tiny speck of tissue in the petri dish deserves no greater protection after being implanted in the womb. In fact, during the IVF process, selective reduction (read eugenic abortion) is routinely suggested and performed to remove the weaker children from the uterus to allow the stronger ones to thrive. Darwinian natural selection at its best.

Abortion has also moved away from procedures with risky side effects to more sterile and swifter methods. The risks of failed abortions are down, and the complications that used to follow are less likely (at least that is what we are told).

All of these technological advancements have demythologized the reproductive process and have made discussion about abortion more sterile, less spiritual, more commonplace, and less offensive. Like most technology these days, we have accepted them all part and parcel without much critical analysis. Like our new cars, new computers, and new iPhones, we use them all but have absolutely no idea how they work.  It all does a great job in obscuring the real issue.

Covert Subversion.

While the pro-choice movement has been enjoying its “awe-inspiring” forward progress, technology has been quietly doing some work on the side.

3d-ultrasound-babyThey were best friends for so many years, so why is it that abortion proponents now suspect that technology–of all things–would prove its undoing?  This picture is the result of the technological advancement of the ultrasound machine.  Taken on GE’s HDlive Ultrasound, what was once obscured by rhetoric, scientific jargon, and lab equipment comes into clear focus.

When you see that little child moving in such crystal clear picture, and you watch his little limbs move around, rub his eyes, and suck his thumb, your heart melts.  All of the sudden, the visual generation is confronted with the advances of technology. The lie that abortionists have clung to for so long–that this little child is merely a lump of tissue–falls completely flat.  Finally, the question truly becomes, “Can we kill a defenseless human being, or not?”

The ultrasound machine is here to stay, much to the chagrin of the pro-choice movement. Millions of Americans are seeing these images years after year. May God use even technology to cause the undoing of the Kingdom of Darkness and its reign of death over the unborn!

(This post originally ran in April 2013. Updated February 8, 2016.)

(photo credit)