Matt C. Abbott
Mom of three: abortion, rape not evil for everyone
By Matt C. Abbott
August 30, 2009

Certain e-mails I receive are simply mind-boggling. Consider the following unedited e-mail from Amy, a seemingly sincere yet terribly misguided mother of three, who wrote in response to my Aug. 27 column on Ted Kennedy:

    'I don't usually respond to these types of things, but for some reason I felt like it today. I stumbled on your article because of the word undiagnosed, just so you know I'm not a regular reader.

    'I'm sure you have heard this before and I'm not intending to get in to a debate, I'm just telling you what I think. The difference between a pro-life person and myself is that I'm not narrow thinking. I would not have an abortion and do think it is cruel and sad, however I'm aware that these are my thoughts and not the thoughts of others. My situation is different than others and things happen that are often beyond our control. Sometimes I wonder if abortion is meant to be for many different reasons, just as ill children as my own. Abortions and sick children have happened for years neither is good and very sad but it happens beyond our control that is life as it is.

    'Judging people for there decisions I can not do whether they are politicians or have a certain religion they are still human and have views of there own.

    'Just thoughts from a mom of 3, one with multiple congenital anomalies that represent a syndrome with out a name.'

I responded:

    'Thank you for writing. I do want to ask: If you think abortion is cruel and sad, and would not procure one yourself (which I commend you for), why do you believe it's morally acceptable for others to do so? Would you say the same thing about, say, rape or assault?

    'That line of thinking — 'Abortion is bad, I wouldn't have one myself, but I won't say it's wrong for someone else to have one' — doesn't make sense to me. Just substitute another evil act in place of the word 'abortion' and see if you come to the same conclusion.'

Amy's second response:

    'Who am I to say what is moral or immoral for someone else. I personally don't think it is morally acceptable for others, but they obviously do. I can not say they are wrong, nor can one that speaks for god [sic]. There are many that speak for god [sic] who side differently, who is right or wrong, I can not say.

    'It is all a matter of perspective to when life begins, again who is right or wrong, I can not say. The subject of what is considered rape has changed over the years. Some don't agree on what is now considered rape, it is a similar matter on what is considered life, what should be legal and what should not be legal. It is best to start with what many people can agree upon, but in politics it doesn't work that way. It is all or nothing, which is sickening to me. And is happening with health care reform, mind you I'm on neither side, but am for change. It seems we will get no changes because we can't start with changes that we all agree on.'

I responded again:

    'Let me put this another way: If someone were to harm a member of your family and assert that he didn't think harming your family member was immoral because he 'follows his own morals,' you would be understanding about that? Is that a 'matter of perspective'?

    'I'm trying to follow your logic, but you sound like a moral relativist, at least on certain issues. If someone murders an innocent person, would you actually say that you can't judge the evil act because the murderer may have a different code of ethics than you? Is that a 'matter of perspective' as well?

    'Is it a 'matter of perspective' if someone promotes the killing of disabled children under the age of five because of that person's 'belief' that such a child is a burden to society?

    'What I'm getting at is this: There are certain things that are intrinsically immoral for everyone, and abortion — the killing of an innocent unborn child — is one of them.'

Amy's third response:

    'The matter of perspective is how someone compares one act to another. The perspective is how people relate and compare acts and situations to one another. Whether one determines in there own mind that an abortion is killing a child or not allowing an embryo to become a child. That is the perspective I'm talking about. Though I don't believe in abortion I do not compare murder of a special needs child anywhere near the same. That is my perspective and I can see how others may feel differently.

    'Me a moral relativist, what's that? I do not categorize myself. I'm just me with my own thoughts. No one person will share the same exact thoughts and experiences as I.

    'Again who determines what is immoral for everyone? Some may feel it is not immoral to murder, rape and so on. It is when a great deal of people believe something is immoral that it becomes against the law. It still doesn't make it immoral to everyone. I respect your perspective and just wanted to share mine with you, that's all.'

I can just hear some unscrupulous defense attorney who's representing a cold-blooded murderer saying to himself/herself, "I'd sure like to have Amy on the jury in my case!"

God help us all.

Robert Schindler, father of the late Terri Schiavo, died of heart failure on Aug. 29.


    '...In the aftermath of Terri's euthanasia death, Robert Schindler started a foundation with the rest of his family to help other disabled patients.

    'The Terri Schindler Schiavo Foundation would connect patients or their families to legal help, physicians and pro-life groups who would speak out on their behalf to obtain basic medical care or lifesaving medical treatment denied to them by the government, hospitals or family members....

    'Schindler's heart figuratively broke when both state and federal courts denied his family's attempts to provide care for his daughter as her estranged husband Michael Schiavo sought her death.

    'The National Right to Life Committee, which worked very closely with the Schindler family to save their daughter and which continues to support their work, sent a statement to after learning of Schindler's death.

    'Wanda Franz, the president of the pro-life group called Schindler a good friend and said it 'joined with pro-lifers nationwide in mourning the passing of our dear friend Robert Schindler.'

    ''Bob Schindler was an extraordinary father, husband and friend,' Franz said. 'His death is a profound loss for all of us in the pro-life movement. Today, our thoughts and prayers are with his loving wife, Mary and their children, Bobby and Suzanne.'

    ''Despite facing legal setbacks at virtually every turn, the Schindlers, with their children at their side, fought unceasingly to defend the right of their daughter, Terri Schindler Schiavo, to receive food and fluids,' Franz explained.

    'She thanked Robert and his family for 'advocating for other medically dependent and disabled patients facing similar circumstances.'

    'Condolences and donations for the Foundation can be sent to: Terri Schindler Schiavo Foundation, 5562 Central Avenue, Suite 2, St. Petersburg, FL, 33707.'

From the Catholic League:

    'Catholic League president Bill Donohue comments on last night's edition of Penn & Teller's show. The program aired on Showtime which is owned by CBS:

    'The Nazis couldn't have done better. Having been in this job for over 16 years, I have never seen a more defamatory, obscene and vicious show on TV. And I mean about any religious or demographic group — not just Catholics. The lies about the Catholic Church, to say nothing of the vile language used by Penn Jillette, were positively astounding. Moreover, it never attempted to be comedic — from the very beginning it advertised the show as payback for 2,000 years of alleged crimes. This was Julius Streicher back from the grave.

    'In this half-hour show, the Catholic Church was blamed for every evil in history. Jillette said the 'intolerance, greed, paranoia, hypocrisy and callous disregard for human suffering' was the hallmark of the Catholic Church. Others on the show branded the Church an 'amoral' and 'power hungry' institution that is just worried about its 'cash flow.'

    'Jillette lied about the Vatican's reaction to Sabina Guzzanti, an Italian foul-mouthed comedian who staged an assault on the pope in 2008: the pope never sought to throw 'her sexy ass in jail' and never once sought any punitive measure against her — it's all a bald face lie! Jillette lied about a 1962 Vatican document — it was a statement about penalties for priests who used the confessional to solicit sex: it was not a cover-up for sexual misconduct! He lied about Pope Benedict XVI — he had absolutely nothing to do with overseeing cases of priestly sexual misconduct in the United States! And so on....

    'I have asked to meet with Les Moonves of CBS. On Monday, we will have a mass mailing of DVD copies of this episode to bishops and religious leaders across the nation. This cannot go unanswered.

    'Contact CBS rep Nancy Tellem at'

From the Catholic Action League of Massachusetts:

    'The Catholic Action League of Massachusetts today decried the scandal which occurred this morning at Boston's most historic Catholic shrine — the Minor Basilica of Our Lady of Perpetual Help, known as 'Mission Church' — where a Mass of Christian Burial was used to 'celebrate the life' of one of America's most notorious opponents of Catholic morality, the late Senator Edward M. Kennedy. Senator Kennedy fought for more than three decades to keep the killing of pre-born children legal and unrestricted in the United States. Surgical abortion has claimed more than 51 million human lives since 1973. The Catholic religion defines abortion as an 'abominable crime.'

    'President Obama delivered the eulogy, in which he alluded to Kennedy's support for gay rights. One of the Prayers of the Faithful was a petition to end divisions 'between gays and straights.'

    'Ecclesial participants included the Rev. Raymond Collins, rector of the Basilica; the Rev. Mark Hession, Kennedy's parish priest from Our Lady of Victories Church in Centerville on Cape Cod; the Rev. J. Donald Monan, chancellor of Boston College; and Sean Cardinal O'Malley, archbishop of Boston, who thanked President Obama for his words and his presence. Father Hession and Cardinal O'Malley suggested that the late senator had found eternal salvation.

    'The Catholic Action League called the event 'a tragic example of the Church's willingness to surrender to the culture, and serve Caesar rather than Christ.'

    'Catholic Action League executive director C. J. Doyle stated: 'Senator Kennedy supported legal abortion, partial-birth abortion, the public funding of Medicaid abortions, embryonic stem cell research, birth control, federal family planning programs, and so-called emergency contraception. He defended Roe v. Wade, endorsed the proposed Freedom of Choice Act (FOCA), and opposed both the Human Life Amendment and the Hyde Amendment. Kennedy maintained a 100 percent rating from both NARAL and Planned Parenthood. In 1993, he received the Kenneth Edelin Award from Planned Parenthood, and in 2000 received the Champions of Choice Award from NARAL Pro-Choice Massachusetts at the hands of the same Dr. Kenneth Edelin, the infamous abortionist.'

    'During his 1994 reelection campaign, Kennedy said, 'I wear as a badge of honor my opposition to the anti-choicers.' His successful obstruction of the nomination of Judge Robert Bork to the U.S. Supreme Court in 1987 effectively prevented the overturning of Roe v. Wade. Beyond his specific positions on human life issues, Senator Kennedy, along with the late Congressman Robert Drinan, provided the cover and the example for two generations of Catholic politicians to defect from Church teaching on the sanctity of innocent human life.'

    'No rational person can reasonably be expected to take seriously Catholic opposition to abortion when a champion of the culture of death, who repeatedly betrayed the Faith of his baptism, is lauded and extolled by priests and prelates in a Marian basilica. This morning's spectacle is evidence of the corruption which pervades the Catholic Church in the United States. The right to life will never be recognized by secular society if it is not first vindicated and consistently upheld within the institutions of the Church itself.'

© Matt C. Abbott


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Matt C. Abbott

Matt C. Abbott is a Catholic commentator with a Bachelor of Arts degree in communication, media and theatre from Northeastern Illinois University. He also has an Associate in Applied Science degree in business management from Triton College. Abbott has been interviewed on HLN, MSNBC, Bill Martinez Live, WOSU Radio in Ohio, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel's 2019 ‘Unsolved’ podcast about the unsolved murder of Father Alfred Kunz, Alex Shuman's 'Smoke Screen: Fake Priest' podcast, WLS-TV (ABC) in Chicago, WMTV (NBC) and WISC-TV (CBS) in Madison, Wisconsin. He’s been quoted in The New York Times, the Chicago Tribune and other media outlets. He’s mentioned in the 2020 Report on the Holy See's Institutional Knowledge and Decision-Making Related to Former Cardinal Theodore Edgar McCarrick (1930 to 2017), which can be found on the Vatican's website. He can be reached at

(Note: I welcome and appreciate thoughtful feedback. Insults will be ignored. Only in very select cases will I honor a request to have a telephone conversation about a topic in my column. Email is much preferred. God bless you and please keep me in your prayers!)


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