Posts Tagged ‘rape’
by Nicole Cooley
As part-time staff for the Center for Bio-Ethical Reform (CBR), I knew Molech would appear at the March for Life (MFL) this year. Marching with my oldest sons and pro-life friends from church, CBR’s latest MFL exhibit assaulted our eyes and our ears like nothing I’d ever experienced.
Unlike my CBR colleagues, I didn’t know what to expect. I was unprepared for the horrific Molech exhibit, just like everybody else. We had no idea what we were marching into.
Combined sign panels produced an image of a priest of Molech holding two screaming babies about to be placed in the outstretched, red hot arms and hands of the huge brass idol. The image was 12 feet high and 24 feet wide. I saw an aborted baby’s hand, blinked, and read the words, “Abortion is Child Sacrifice.” Then, another larger-than-life portrait, this one depicting Satan. This image was 15 feet high. My eyes looked away after a brief glance. Meanwhile, my ears recoiled from the sound of babies crying from CBR’s speakers on both ends of the exhibit.
A short time later, CBR’s Maggie Egger interviewed me on camera. She asked, “Is abortion child sacrifice?” My answer flowed easily, recapping my personal history of rape and abortion, and for the first time making the connection, with my own words, that I had sacrificed my child in order to be healed from rape. Believing a lie from my pastor who urged me to abort, I learned the hard way that abortion would not help me heal, but would compound the trauma and make healing infinitely more difficult.
In the days following the March, I rapidly struggled to make sense of it all. Perhaps more so than most, because Facebook acquaintances demanded an explanation, one that I didn’t have at first. In the early hours of Sunday morning, God woke me with the thought, “You have now marched to the altar of Molech.”
After searching the Scripture for references to Molech, and finding an article by Gregg Cunningham on the topic of child sacrifice, I began to understand. Had CBR not assaulted me, I doubt I would have ever done so otherwise. Even with the fourteen revisions of Gregg’s article in my email archives, nothing had compelled me to dig further until the MFL.
As a result of marching to Molech, I now have a deeper understanding of abortion as Biblical child sacrifice. I do not relish the path to this insight; I’m ashamed it took that much to make me want to really study Biblical child sacrifice for myself. I previously knew about Biblical child sacrifice on an intellectual level. Now my heart understood as well.
Consider this: Simon Sebag Montefiore, international best-selling author of the history text Jerusalem, says:
Most dreadful of all, … [Manasseh] encouraged the sacrifice of children at the roaster — the Tophet — in the Valley of Hinnom, south of the city [of Jerusalem]. Indeed “he made his own pass through the fire….” Children were said to be taken there as priests beat drums to hide the shrieks of the victims from their parents. (Vintage Books, 2011, p. 44)
Those of us who participated in the MFL this year have now seen Scripture revealed as plainly as possible.
God’s people in the Old Testament eventually tore down the altars to Molech at Tobeth (2 Kings 23:10). It’s far past time for His people in the United States to do the same to our altars to Molech, most notably our largest abortion provider, Planned Parenthood. Instead of trying to justify their existence through Planned Parenthood’s imaginary “good” services, it’s time to tear them down once and for all. Eliminating over half a billion dollars in federal funding will be a great start towards that goal.
I’m told the MFL is supposed to be a celebration of life instead of a funeral for the lost. The other side doesn’t fear our celebration of life. They do fear our real mourning for the over 58 million lives lost to abortion, because that passion could mean their own demise. Which view would motivate pro-life people more to make a difference in the coming year for life?
Nicole Cooley is a CBR Project Director and a FAB contributor.
CBR Project Director Maggie Egger shares a story from her recent GAP excursion to the University of South Florida
What about rape?
She was staring intently at the pictures when I approached her and asked what she thought of abortion. She said “I’ve never really thought about it. I don’t really have an opinion.”
I’d heard that so many times already that I already had my next question prepared. “Well, can you maybe think of a hypothetical situation where you would think it was okay?”
She thought for a moment and then said, “In the case of rape, I think it would be up to the woman what she want’s to do. I guess that would be the only time I would say it would be okay if that’s what she decided.”
I then gave her this hypothetical rape situation: A married woman has consensual sex with her husband on Monday and then is violently raped on Tuesday. She discovers she’s pregnant. After discussing it all with her husband, they decide to continue with the pregnancy because there’s a possibility that the baby is her husband’s. She gives birth, and then has a paternity test done. They find out that the father is actually the rapist’s and not her husband’s.
I asked “Would it then be okay for her to kill the month-old infant?”
She replied, “Of course not!”
Then I countered, “So, what is the difference between the month-old infant and the 6-week embryo that makes it okay to kill one and not the other?”
That lead us to a discussion of fetal development and when life begins, as well as the harmful effects that abortion has on women, especially women who have already suffered the trauma of rape.
The conversation was slowing down a bit and she went back to looking at the pictures in front of her. So I just came out and asked her again, “So what do you think about abortion?”
She paused for a minute, looked at the pictures again, looked at me and said, “Ya know, I guess there is no good reason to do that.”
Revised: August 28, 2012, 5:00 pm / Updated: August 28 & August 31
“How do you answer the rape question?” We get it all the time. Our answer? “Very carefully.”
Missouri Senate candidate Todd Akin set off a firestorm last week with his answer to the rape question. Of course Obamacrats will demagogue the issue, but I’ve been disappointed by the reaction of some Republicans. Afraid of getting sound-byted themselves, they just want Mr. Akin to go away and take his controversy with him.
I’ve also been disappointed by the media. Of course I expected NBC/CBS/ABC to respond in their normally superficial and partisan way, but not the fair and balanced network. Even there, we got almost no relevant facts, just talking heads reacting out of ignorance. Perhaps research and reason are difficult and boring. Bombasity sells.
There are two attacks on Mr. Akin. The first is about his use of the term “legitimate” rape. The second is about his assertion that a woman who is raped has a very small likelihood of getting pregnant (which he qualified by saying that he had been told this by doctors).
It is clear from the context that Mr. Akin was talking about an actual rape, perhaps as opposed to an accused rape. Of course, the people who screamed for “context” to Mr. Obama’s “You didn’t build that” statement a few weeks ago now want no such context for Mr. Akin. Here’s how everybody is getting this wrong:
President Barack Obama. President Obama said, “The idea that we should be parsing and qualifying and slicing what types of rape we’re talking about doesn’t make sense to the American people, and certainly doesn’t make sense to me.”
Really, Mr. President? So, if we were to talk about alleged rapist Bill Clinton, keynote speaker at the Democratic Convention, we needn’t parse differences between an alleged crime and a real (AKA, “legitimate”) crime, right? Applying your rule, we should simply say that Mr. Clinton is a rapist, right?
For more on Democratic rape hypocrisy, check out this column by Gregory Kane.
Republicans running for cover. Sometimes, people should just stand up and say what’s right … even politicians. I won’t comment whether Mr. Akin should stay in the race or not. I would gladly throw the man under the bus myself (and jump under it with him) to get a decent Senator from Missouri. However, Republicans shouldn’t be so hypocritical … nor hypercritical … regarding an ill-chosen word. They’ve all done it. By piling on Mr. Akin, they are turning a difficult situation into an impossible one. For more about the GOP in panic, see Pat Buchanan’s piece.
I was especially disappointed that Mitt Romney called on Mr. Akin to exit the race. Wasn’t it Mr. Romney who once said, “I don’t care about poor people”? It was clear from the context that he didn’t mean it like it sounded.
What they should say is this: “I am sure Mr. Akin didn’t mean it the way some want to demagoge it. Mr. Akin simply believes that every human life is sacred and should be respected.”
Conception After Rape
I am certain that doctors have told Mr. Akin that a victim of rape is less likely to get pregnant than a woman who engaged in consensual sex. It is an oft-repeated belief, even if it isn’t true. We know some women get pregnant from rape (including CBR’s Virginia Director, by the way). (The ABC Medical Unit blog reported estimates of pregnancy from rape ranging from 10,000 to 30,000 per year.) But here’s how everybody is getting it wrong:
Todd Akin himself. First, he needed to construct his statement based on provable facts and practice his statement, before he was asked the question. Second, he needed to be skeptical of activists, especially those on his own side. He listened to pro-life doctors, but pro-lifers are like everybody else; they repeat what they’ve heard (if it supports their point of view) and they rarely bother to check the facts. In the age of Google, that’s inexcusable. Third, he needs to stay on topic. The percentage of women getting pregnant from rape has nothing to do with the humanity of their children.
Bottom line: He is running for the US Senate. He needs to be more disciplined.
Critics who know nothing about reproductive science (and too little about Google). Lou Dobbs (Fox News) said Mr. Akin’s statement was “absurd” and even invited two psychologists to analyze. Phil Williams, a local radio personality who is nominally conservative, called Mr. Akin a liar for saying that a doctor had told him that rape victims are less likely to conceive.
Not so fast. Dr. Jack Wilke, and OB-GYN and pro-life activist) wrote an article in 1999, Rape Pregnancies are Rare. I don’t have a source, but some have attempted to explain this phenomenon based on stress, which has long been believed that stress can interfere with normal reproductive processes. Certainly rape is stressful. Based on these and other factors, some pro-lifers have believed for many years that a rape victim rarely gets pregnant. I have heard it many times and I’m certain many doctors have repeated it. Readers can judge Dr. Wilke’s analysis of the data themselves and I’m not trying to sell his conclusion; I’m just saying that many credentialed people do believe it and repeat it.
Here’s the science, as nearly as I can Google. The chances of a woman getting pregnant from a single incidence of consensual sex is 3.1% (source). The ABC News blog dutifully reported that some studies have shown that the probability of conception from a single act of rape has been reported as high as 6.4%. What they fail to tell you is that other researchers have reported conception rates among rape victims as low as 1%, which is a despicable omission. In his book Theories of Rape, author Lee Ellis cited one study in which “researchers were able to document only 1 pregnancy out of 232 incidences of rape that could definitely be attributed to the attack” (Theories of Rape, published by Taylor & Francis, 1989, page 47).
I don’t know whether a rape victim is more, equally, or less likely to get pregnant. But this I know: Even if Mr. Akin’s statement is incorrect — I tend to believe it is incorrect — it is certainly not without basis.
Like I said, I don’t know if Mr. Akin should stay in the race or not. If he can’t win, he needs to accept political realities and bow out. Our country and our children are at stake.
I’m not a political expert, but if he stays and fights, I would tell him this:
- Quit apologizing. Enough already.
- Regarding “legitimate” rape, say something like this: “Look, in the course of conversation, I added a word that didn’t need to be there. I understand what they want you to think I said, but everybody knows that I didn’t mean it that way. Rape is a serious crime; and we need to do more to understand it and prevent it.”
- Regarding the science, “Of course I know that women get pregnant from rape. I had been told that it was rare, but now I know it is maybe not as rare as I was told. Deal with it.”
- Answer the rape question this way, “I believe every human life is sacred and should be welcomed and supported by all of us. We can’t solve one act of violence by committing another. By the way, many victims of rape agree with me. So do their living children (example).”
What do you say?
UPDATE – Aug 28, 2012, 10:40 am: More recent over-the-top statements by Karl Rove, Andrew Napolitano, and others have likely delivered the coup de grace to any chances Mr. Akin had left. The Dems will gleefully capture Republican soundbytes denouncing Mr. Akin and play them over and over again. If he wants to make sure the Republicans can win back that seat (so they can pass a budget and stop ObamaCare), he has no choice but to stand aside and let the Republican Establishment send in a relief pitcher. Fair or not, that’s just the political reality.
UPDATE – August 31, 3:25 am: See Ryan Bomberger’s column on Karl Rove’s comments. He is obviously not a friend of the pro-life movement.
Nicole Cooley testified about her story of rape and abortion on the steps of the US Supreme Court building at the 2012 March for Life. Nicole is the Virginia Project Director for the Center for Bio-Ethical Reform (CBR).
A video of Nicole’s remarks is shown below. Here is the text:
I am here today because I deeply regret the abortion I had four weeks after being raped. There is no good reason to have an abortion. All the logical reasons fail to keep your heart from breaking when it’s over.
If, like me, you were raped, and you think you can’t bear nine months of pregnancy, I can tell you from experience the seventeen years of regret have been worse. I realized too late that my baby was a gift from a loving God who wanted to give me a purpose for my pain.
I want women facing this decision to know you can carry to term; you can choose the adoptive parents, and set your own terms, if you wish. You can live without the tears, the regret, and the nights of despair – or worse.
The abortion clinic I went to provided no verbal counseling and instead gave me a handful of papers with words I couldn’t read through my tears and shaking. The anesthesiologist told me, “It will be over soon.” She was wrong. The abortion was the beginning of the real nightmare for me.
I had no idea how the abortion would affect me. The abortion made healing from the rape infinitely more difficult by compounding the trauma. Before the abortion I cried daily. Afterwards, I shut down emotionally.
The rape and abortion made my life a living hell. I had nightmares beginning the night of the rape. Countless nights, I have woken up crying. The anguished tears I have cried are unlike any other despair I’ve ever experienced, including the death of close family members.
The rape and abortion crushed my spirit. Abortion robbed me not only of my joy, but also the essence of who I am by making me turn against my own child.
Since the rape and abortion, it has been very difficult for me to trust men. I am only married today because God sent me an incredibly gentle and patient man. I have difficulty trusting doctors. Annual exams are often stressful and painful. The subsequent births of my sons and daughter with my husband have been very difficult because of an unnatural fear of pregnancy and childbirth.
Abortion is not the answer for rape. It never was. But God is the answer for the pain. My faith in Jesus Christ has not only healed me, but given me the courage to speak out and provided a purpose to all that I have suffered. This is why I choose to be Silent No More!
Nicole Cooley, CBR’s Virginia Project Director, spoke to the pro-life student group at Liberty University last night. She described her experience with rape and abortion and spent another hour answering questions and speaking with students.
One student wanted to know how to help his girlfriend, who is post-abortive from a previous relationship.
Another student wanted to know about our use of pictures at the entrances to the campus back in August. He asked how Christians can do more to end abortion, which is exactly the question we hoped to stimulate with our GAP appearance. Nicole stressed that if we can’t get Christians to care about abortion, we have no hope of ever ending it.
She also spoke to the issue of how Christian women can feel pressured to abort if they are condemned and punished for getting pregnant out of wedlock. Notice that men never have to face this. The irony here is that the sexual revolution was sold to America as an emancipator of women. In practice, women are pressured to have sex. Women become pregnant. Women are threatened with expulsion from school. In many cases, women bear the more severe symptoms of STDs. “Men” get sex without responsibility and then they try to transfer their own guilt to the mothers of their own children by saying, “It’s a women’s issue.” Yeah, right.
Pro-life students told Nicole that we had a huge impact on Liberty when we brought GAP early this semester. Students were talking about abortion a lot for a month after we were there, and they still talk about it now, months later. Even though many of them were angry at us, we still succeeded in making abortion a significant and ongoing topic of discussion on campus. Mission accomplished.
We agree with Martin Luther King. We don’t care what people think about us; we care what they think about injustice. Read my letter to Liberty University here.
CBR Virginia Director Nicole Cooley is a frequent speaker on the subject of abortion and rape. She can tell you from her own experience that abortion does not help the victim of rape, it only compounds the trauma from one act of violence with another.
Nicole asks you to pray for “Kathy,” another victim of rape who was deceived into having an abortion. Working undercover for the police, Kathy was brutally gang-raped. Later, after recovering from her extensive injuries in the hospital, she discovered she was also pregnant. She aborted at 7 weeks, which, according to Kathy, “made everything so much worse.” She told Nicole, “I am no better than the thugs I tried to put in jail.” The combination of traumas created a cocktail of deadly emotions. Like Nicole, Kathy has learned the hard way that abortion doesn’t help rape victims. Instead it makes healing from both traumas infinitely more difficult.
Kathy was recently admitted to the hospital, where she is in critical condition because she staved herself down to 65 pounds, hoping to kill herself. She has damaged her heart and kidneys but the doctors are working now to treat her. In fact, she has already gained 5 pounds, which is good news.
Please pray for Kathy and other post-abortive women who desperately need healing from their abortion traumas. Post-abortion trauma is real. And avoidable. Please help us educate more women (and men) so others can avoid the trauma of abortion in the first place. Your gift will save women like Kathy.
Please pray for Kathy’s medical team and for Nicole, as she ministers to Kathy’s spirit.
Media. It was another awesome day. Unbelievable coverage on the front page of the student newspaper. You can’t see it online, but they published a whole 2-page spread of photos that included some of our best GAP signs. On the paper’s website, I noted that this was the first mention of abortion since 2008! Yikes!
Southern Hospitality, in the North? We were really struck by how polite everybody at Rhode Island has been, regardless of whether they agree with us or not. Not sure why. Perhaps the people of Rhode Island are just naturally polite. Perhaps Rhode Island promotes a small-state, small-town culture. Perhaps the presence of 4 police officers put everybody on their best behavior. Perhaps Rhode Island is so blue (left-wing), they viewed us as more of a curiosity than a threat to their “rights.”
Opportunities. Regardless of the reasons, we had many, many opportunities to present the pro-life message to students. We had 10 or 15 staff and volunteers who never stopped handing out pro-life literature and speaking with students all day long.
Calm down? The pro-abortion protesters gathered, but were relatively quiet. Still, I overheard one student complain as she walked between their group and our display. She said, “Why can’t both sides just calm down?!” I had to laugh as I thought, “This is as calm as it gets!”
Don’t forget us! As usually happens, some Jewish people complain because we compare abortion to the Holocaust. On the other hand, a Ukrainian employee of the University approached me and suggested we add the Ukrainian genocide to our display. A few years ago, a gentleman who was interested in the history of Native American oppression actually praised our inclusion of the Wounded Knee massacre. Go figure.
More to come? We’ll do more of this, but only if you help. If only 8 people give $100 per month, we can add another major university to our schedule every year. Perhaps you can’t give $100, but you can give something. The best way to maintain the status quo is to do nothing. Please do something.
At the University of Rhode Island (URI) yesterday, 4 women and 1 man wore t-shirts identifiying themselves as “Silent No More” (SNM). This outreach has a powerful effect on students.
URI student “Adam” asked if most abortions are performed very early in pregnancy. GAP/SNM volunteer Hannah explained that she didn’t even know she was pregnant until late in the first trimester.
Nicole added that after being raped and convinced by her pastor to abort, she called an abortion clinic. “When I called, I was at 3-1/2 weeks. The clinic told me to wait until 6 weeks because it would be safer for me. What they didn’t tell me was that in 3 more weeks, my baby would have arms and legs. What made the abortion ‘safe’ was their ability to count body parts. When I learned this after the abortion, I was devastated.”
Adam winced as Nicole told her story and took our literature to read more about the genocide comparison. He also returned later in the day to talk to Hannah further.
The most dramatic witness came later in the afternoon from another rape victim who taped the words “RAPE VICTIM, PRO LIFE” on a black shirt, stood defiantly in front of the abortion pictures, and faced the protestors across the street. They gaped at her, and half of them immediately abandoned their protest.