Baby Munoz Was a Person, Not a Political Issue
I am Pro-Life.
As I have gotten older I talk less about some of my personal perspectives, particularly on this subject because I find it divisive. I believe honey catches more flies than vinegar, and so I try to be the metaphorical honey for my beliefs.
I am particularly reticent to discuss the subject of abortion because I feel the majority of Americans have made up their minds firmly on this point. It is a deeply personal issue and one I take on here with trepidation. Every woman who has ever been pregnant has on some level been confronted with this choice. As a result, we all feel very protective about these decisions.
I am for life. Because I know that one life can change everything. It did for me.
I do not bring up the subject of abortion here to stir controversy, but rather to assert that recent events in Texas concerning Baby Munoz are not representative of my position on Life.
As a practicing Catholic I believe in the sanctity of Life from conception to natural death. This is what Catholic social law teaches, and I believe it is among the most conservative definitions of Life out there. That being said, even with that definition of Life, the Munoz family's situation has been tragically taken out of context and has been warped to promote a particular ideology, my ideology. I find this disgusting and because I do so firmly believe in Life, I refuse to stand by and watch people who claim to be on the same side of this issue as I am to hijack the issue and essential nullify everything good and strong in my position.
When Marlise Munoz suffered her accident and ultimately became brain dead last November, her baby was 14 weeks old. That tiny baby essentially died with her at the same time. The abilities of the medical world are wonderful. Modern medicine has shown to achieve miracles, but we must proceed with caution. Fundamentally the doctors treating Marlise were able to keep her body functioning enough to allow the baby to continue to grow. However, the intricacies of human development are so complex it is impossible to know how the prolonged period without air affected the baby or the sustained medical treatment and the damage to his/her mother affected his/her growth, much less ability to live. Essentially both mother and child were artificially propped up on life support, neither with any chance to truly survive.
The legalese of Texas law put the protection of the hospital over the rights of the patient, which is an outrageous situation. But even more outrageous is to take this family's tragedy and extend it to a Pro-Life issue. I respect this is a complicated issue. I totally understand the level of litigation hospitals face, and think it ridiculous. I do, however, support legislation that allows for the prosecution of murder for pregnant women killed for both mother and child. However I would argue that the Munoz case was a tragedy outside of those circumstances, as the lawsuit resolved this past week clearly indicated.
I am sometimes frustrated by the ridiculous rhetoric of supposedly "Pro-Life" politicians and advocates. Comments made during the last election cycle by Republican Senator Todd Akin concerning 'legitimate rape' and 'the female body has ways to try to shut down that whole thing' indicate the full extent of ignorance surrounding the issue. Aligning ourselves with morons like these do not make our position stronger. Rather, it weakens the position of reasonable Americans who want to preserve life of unborn children and to protect women from the damage of abortion. (That's right, I believe that abortion is bad for women. It hurts us, it damages our souls. I do not say that with hate or anger. I say that because I love women. I hate that we would subject our bodies to that invasion and unnatural pain).
Across social media and the news this week Pro-Lifers bemoaned the murder of Baby Munoz. I would argue that the reason that poor baby died this week was because the hospital would not allow either the baby or his/her mother to die at the end of their natural lives, months ago. Whatever travesty that has occurred in this scenario is to directly linked to unnatural intervention on the part of the medical profession and their legal department's refusal to abide by a family's rights. It is NOT a Pro-life or Pro-Choice issue.