As a child, I liked to survey strangers about what it means to be human. Brandon Stanton has created a fully realized version of what I was doing.
A few years after Howard Stephens started providing abortions, he became the target of local anti-abortion protesters. They picketed his home on weekends, distributed leaflets around his neighborhood calling him a murderer, followed his moves around town, and sent hate mail to his son. Perhaps most concerning, the protesters picketed Howard’s church twice.
There has been a broad and dramatic shift toward more abortion restrictions in the United States. This will almost certainly continue.
Fabrizio Amerini’s analysis creates precision about Aquinas on beginning-of-life issues—something other accounts, especially abortion polemics, often lack.
Is Burwell v. Hobby Lobby about freedom of (corporate) conscience broadly, or is it just about a few specific contraceptives? It can’t really be both.
Be sure to read Amelia Thomson-Deveaux's article on the emerging evangelical-Catholic alliance over contraception. I think her historical analogy is entirely fair: evangelicals haven't always been opposed to contraception, but then they weren't always galvanized against abortion, either. And I appreciate that she doesn't simply endorse one of the two standard narratives on how evangelicals came to hate abortion—that either they came around to this opposition organically as they learned about the facts OR they were cynically manipulated by political operatives. There's truth in each of those stories; they aren't mutually exclusive.
Nowhere has our callow politics asserted itself more thoughtlessly and noisily than in the politicization of personal or private life.
I’m proud to be a part of a movement whose great concern is learning to love your neighbor as you love yourself. And as we move into the new year, I hope those voices of justice will grow stronger—and I wish for some other things as well.