This episode of CareCast includes Roland Warren, Care Net's President and CEO, and Vincent DiCaro, Care Net's Chief Outreach Officer. Roland and Vince sat down to chat about the tried-and-true strategy the abortion industry uses to deceive people. Let's listen in on Roland and Vince's conversation.
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How the Abortion Industry Deceives People
What follows is a modified transcript of this CareCast episode; an interview with Roland Warren and Vince DiCaro. Audio was recorded at the nerve center of the Pro Abundant Life Movement, in our recording studio at Care Net headquarters.
Vincent DiCaro: Around our issue of life and the abortion issue. You and I go way back, as you know, to our work at the National Fatherhood Initiative. One of the things that we talked about quite a bit when we were at National Fatherhood Initiative and addressing this societal issue of father absence and the breakdown of the family, was that whenever any kind of social movement is trying to get traction in the culture, they focus on three pillars of culture: Government, business, and faith.
So any successful social movement tries to engage those three pillars, win them over to their side, and get them sort of fighting for them, working for them, just sort of operating according to their standards. The abortion issue is no different.
I'd like to hear you lay that out a little bit in terms of how the pro-choice movement has, in a lot of ways successfully, at least so far, engaged at least two of those three, and we're going to talk about how we've seen a lot of new stories recently in terms of their efforts to engage the third of those three. The first two at least are government and business, so talk about how the abortion industry, the pro-choice movement, have sort of won those two over in a certain sense.
Roland Warren: No, it really is true that when you look at cultural movements that had traction, they have a concerted strategy. In many cases, they'll start with the government section. Let me get something legalized if you will. If I can get it legalized, then I can get the government to do that. So the government legalizes it, then the business community funds it and then the church community is supposed to sanctify it. So you can just look through movements in history; slavery, a perfect example. We had a government structure that legalized chattel slavery. Then you had a whole business structure that funded that injustice, if you will. And then the church was complicit and sanctified it.
So you see that again and again and again and again. And again, these are kind of a focus, for good or for ill, is what we see. We are seeing the same kind of thing happen on the abortion issue, that the government, Roe v Wade, and then even what you see that's in the post-Roe environment. These states are turning their states into abortion sanctuaries even, saying, "Hey, bring all your folks who want abortions here."
So they're legalizing it, and then the business community is funding it. We've seen lots of stories about companies who are saying, "We're for women, and what we're going to do is we're going to help women have abortions by funding that, by giving them travel vouchers, by giving them vacation," all those kinds of things. Not to fund them in their pregnancy, but to fund them in their abortion. And so the next frontier is co-opting the church to get the church to sanctify it in terms of that. And so we're seeing that trifecta of things happening around this issue.
Vincent DiCaro: Yeah. Yeah. I think in one particular story that really just brings that home in a big, big way is Governor Gavin Newsom of California took out a billboard campaign actually using a Bible verse to justify abortion. So it's again, not the first time we've seen this sort of thing, but this idea that not only is abortion not wrong, but it's actually condoned in the Bible. You're actually doing something very Christian and very good by actually supporting and having abortions. Right?
Roland Warren: Yeah. It's actually, I mean if you think about it, it's actually like this is a Christian duty.
Vincent DiCaro: Right. Yes.
Roland Warren: This is actually a Christian duty to help a woman have an abortion. It's actually a Christian duty for you to do that.
Vincent DiCaro: Yeah. So Roland, the thing that's just really kind of fascinating about this billboard that Governor Newsom of California took out is that it actually quotes Mark 12:31, which Jesus says, "The second is this, you shall love your neighbor as yourself. There is no greater commandment than these." So it's really interesting that they just used Mark 12:31 in saying that supporting a woman and having an abortion is a form of loving your neighbor, and therefore it is a good Christian thing to do. You can almost kind of see the finger wagging going on by the folks that took out this billboard. "If you good Christians, if you really are the good Christians that you say you are, your Bible says that you need to love your neighbor, and there's no greater commandment than these." That's only one commandment, right? And so it's really interesting that they left out Mark 12:30 and just used 12:31 to justify abortion. But what does Mark 12:30 say, Roland?
Roland Warren: Well, it talks about loving God. Right. And it's interesting here because it's a truth, but not the truth, which is what Satan always does. He just leaves part of it out, and that part that he leaves out brings the fullness of what God is really speaking about in that moment. That's really the point. It's that the great commandment is to love God, and then to love your neighbor, and there's more, as yourself. To love God and to love your neighbor as yourself. So there are basically three actors there. There's God, you, and then your neighbor.
It's interesting because when you actually look at other places in the Bible where that question was asked of Jesus, I know once a lawyer asked him that same question, and he kind of goes into the story of the Good Samaritan. It's interesting because on the abortion issue, what you really have is not a loving of God and not a loving of your neighbor, but basically a focus solely on loving yourself. Because if you look at the word neighbor in Greek in terms of how that's kind of viewed, it really means "near one." So a neighbor is a near one. And for a woman who's facing an unplanned pregnancy, who is nearer than her than the child growing inside of her?
And for the guy who participated in an unplanned pregnancy, who is nearer to that guy than the child that's growing inside of her? Bone of her bone and flesh of her flesh. So explain to me, again, using Gavin Newsom's perspective and this limited theology that he's trying to use here, explain to me how it supports loving your neighbor when you abort your neighbor, when you kill your neighbor, when you kill the near one? Explain to me how that is loving your neighbor. And explain to me how it's loving God when you kill his image bearers.
You actually have a hard time, I think, and this is one of the challenges I try to present to Christians who profess to be pro-choice. I say, "Explain to me how you reconcile your support for abortion with the great commandment. How do you support that? How does helping a woman end the life of one of God's image bearers support loving God? And how does ending the life of one of God's image bearers support loving your neighbor who is that image bearer?" And oh, by the way, there's the great commandment, but then there's also the great commission, which is for us to make disciples and to teach them to obey all that Christ taught us. Well, what is it that Christ taught us? I mean, all the Scriptures can be distilled down into the two great commandments, and Christ kind of living those out, showing us how to love God, and showing us how to love our neighbors.
All that he's taught us is actually the great commandment. So he actually links the great commission and the great commandment together. So explain to me again, how does aborting your neighbor helped that person to become a disciple of Jesus Christ? So it's part of the disciple process, actually aborting your neighbor?
You see what I'm saying? So it's a real challenge from a theological perspective when you walk through this, and that's kind of the challenge I put before folks who profess to love Christ, which means that you don't get a pass on the great commandment and the great commission because you call yourself pro-choice.
You're still required. So my question is, how do you reconcile living out the great commandment to love God and to love our neighbor as yourself and the great commission, and supporting the abortion decision? I'll wait.
Vincent DiCaro: Yeah, that's a really challenging question to ask. I think folks like Governor Newsom and other politicians who are again, trying to sort of use Scripture, use Christianity to try to convince Christians that they actually should be supporting abortion, they're hoping and assuming that people aren't really going to think through those deeper theological issues.
They're going to see, "Oh, love your neighbor. Yeah. I guess if this woman really wants and needs an abortion, the way to love her is to go ahead and let her do that." But then, like you said, if you peel back the layers, it doesn't make a whole lot of sense, especially when you're quoting one-half of Jesus's statement and awkwardly leaving off the first part because it ends with, "These are the greatest," and there's only one in there.
Roland Warren: Yeah. And the crazy thing about it, it just shows truth always has this way of rearing its head. They didn't even realize that in the verse that they used, it was actually a condemnation of their whole worldview. Because if they did, they could say, "Oh, here's the tricky thing we'll do. We'll just use the second part." But then they left, "These."
Vincent DiCaro: Another target here that I think the pro-choice movement has really honed in on, and again, is sort of using very moralistic language is men, and kind of relying on men to buy into this notion that the moral thing, the Christian thing to do as a man, is to actually support abortion and support the mother of your unborn child in her desire to have an abortion if that's, in fact, what she wants. I think it goes around this idea of building out this worldview that the greatest moral imperative of our time, including whether you're a Christian or not, so including Christians, the greatest moral imperative of our time is that individual happiness and fulfillment governs everything.
And I think unfortunately a lot of Christians have bought into that worldview, maybe a light version of it, but some version of that, that we're basically here to try to be happy. And if part of being happy and "loving your neighbor" in the very incomplete way that we just talked about is actually allowing or supporting or having an abortion, then so be it then. In fact, you're actually doing something very Christian. It's just very ironic.
Roland Warren: It's absolutely ironic. It does, and particularly this focus on men and the role of men and the role of men actually supporting the abortion decision. You and I have talked about this for years, that the fact that the pro-choice movement in many ways, her body, her choice, and the perspective I think to men is, you have no agency in this discussion unless we give you a point of view. So you can be bro-choice, as they'll say.
So the only option you have is actually to support her in the decision that she makes, even if the decision is an immoral decision, that the right thing to do as a man is actually to support her in that decision. That leads back to that. And we're not called, as you know from a Christian perspective, it's not about happiness, it's about holiness. And holiness means being set apart in terms of how we think about issues, and we're set apart to think about those issues the way that God thinks about those issues.
And that's why again, going back to the great commandment, loving God, is basically adopting a worldview, a way of thinking about all the issues of life, the most important issues of life, thinking about them with the mind of Christ. That's how actually how you love God. You actually think about and act on issues based on the mind of God.
You really have a problem when you're trying to exclude men from this discussion, because we are called, really, in a big way as men to really be protectors and providers in a big, big way, and especially towards the vulnerable. Especially towards the vulnerable.
Vincent DiCaro: But I think over the last several decades, our culture has just done an unfortunately masterful job of really sort building a lot of complacency in men, right? Around this issue in particular. Basically like you said, if we want your opinion on abortion, we'll give it to you. I think men have sort of been "trained" in a certain sense to basically wait for the culture's cues. So you just tell me what I'm supposed to believe about abortion.
In that sort of environment, it becomes much easier to come in with this very moralistic or moral-sounding way of basically giving men an out in a sense. Like, oh no, this is not some neutral position. This actually makes you a good person to believe what we, the pro-choice movement, believe about abortion. In fact, you could even find it in the Bible. For somebody who's kind of complacent and is waiting to be told what to believe or what to say, that can sort of be comforting in a negative way.
I think one last place, again, this is what we're seeing in the news is we're about to come up on an election here, a midterm election. You're seeing lots of politicians really sort of going after religious voters with this idea that you as a religious voter should actually support my pro-choice position, and you yourself should be pro-choice because you are religious.
So again, it's this concerted effort to get that third pillar to sort of sanctify abortion. Because obviously with the overturning of Roe v. Wade in June, abortion has sort of become more of an issue in this election than it probably otherwise would have been. And so both sides are of jockeying for position and trying to get their votes, get their base. It's just interesting to see the tactics that the pro-choice movement is using to try to take advantage of this cultural moment and actually use religion to try to make their case with religious voters.
Let's get back to these three sectors, these three pillars of culture that movements try to affect in order to get their worldview pushed through into the culture, government, business, and faith. When it comes to that faith sector, what you talked about was the goal is to really sanctify abortion so that the church and believers come to believe somehow that abortion is actually a good thing. So it's this idea of sanctifying abortion. But there's another side to that coin that we also see happening. Why don't you talk about that?
Roland Warren: So really it's a de-sanctification, if you will, of what is good and what is true and what is right. So you have a sanctification of what is wrong, and a de-sanctification of what is right. In other words, calling what is evil good, and then calling what is good evil. And we see that.
One of the ways that have been manifested, certainly since the Dobbs leak, and then further after the Dobbs decision, is the attack on pro-life pregnancy centers, pro-life people, and pro-life organizations; both physical attacks that we've seen, certainly in our affiliated network of pregnancy centers, fire bombings, bricks thrown through windows, graffiti, all those kinds of things. Even pro-life people are being attacked personally as they've been trying to do the work that God's called them to do. So if you think about that through this kind of construct that we've kind of laid out here, it really is the de-sanctification. We're trying to say that those who are doing this work to preserve life are actually doing an unholy act.
Vincent DiCaro: Right. They're lying to women, they're deceptive, they're doing all these terrible things. And again, you really see these three pillars of culture come into place. So you have people in the government trying to pass laws and regulations that make it difficult for pregnancy centers to do what they do.
Roland Warren: Or turning a blind eye to the violence.
Vincent DiCaro: Right. You see the business sector, you see companies, and you see people in the private sector funding studies about how terrible pregnancy centers are. You see corporations making public statements about, "Be careful for these folks. These are 'fake' clinics."
Roland Warren: Social media campaigns are orchestrated and used through those platforms in order to block the message that pregnancy centers would bring into public schools.
Vincent DiCaro: You have Big Tech companies making it as difficult as possible.
Roland Warren: Absolutely. So you got the government, you got the business community.
Vincent DiCaro: You got business, and then of course the faith community as you said. Folks saying that "No, actually these people are the unholy ones. They're the ones that are lying and deceiving. And to love your neighbor, you need to actually support abortion."
It's just fascinating to see this strategy play out, even though it's, of course, for a nefarious purpose, you could sort of see how this could be used for good or for evil. And it's just consistent really across that.
Roland Warren: Here's the thing about it. Like Scripture says, "There's nothing new under the sun." It's actually not a new strategy.
Vincent DiCaro: Yeah. Talk about how do we know that this strategy actually works or that people have used it for really bad things.
Roland Warren: Well, we saw it frankly in the crucifixion of Christ and what happened there. Because what happened? Well, we had the church sector, if you will, which was represented by the Sadducees and the Pharisees coming together to bring Christ to who? The government structure, which was Pontius Pilate.
Vincent DiCaro: The Roman government.
Roland Warren: The Roman government. And who set the whole thing up? Well, it was a consumer transaction, where who was given money?
Vincent DiCaro: Judas was given money.
Roland Warren: He was given money.
Vincent DiCaro: He was basically paid to perform an abortion, in a certain sense.
Roland Warren: Right, because abortion is basically killing the life that you know, and we know that Jesus is the way, the truth, and the life. So abortion, when you think about it in that context, is actually the ending of a life that you know is life.
Vincent DiCaro: And an innocent life.
Roland Warren: And an innocent life, right? But you come to the determination that this is a life not worth saving, but a life worth sacrificing. And for whom? For yourself. So instead of loving God who Christ represented, loving God your neighbor which Christ also represented in humanity, you loved yourself. Do you see what I'm saying?
Vincent DiCaro: And you took money.
Roland Warren: And you took money and you sacrificed the innocent one. So you see the three of those things coming together for the biggest injustice that's ever happened in human history, which has been the crucifixion of Christ. So that's where this comes from. It's not a new strategy, it's actually an old strategy, and it's one that really comes from the evil one doing the work that he does. Because we know that our battle, again, is not against flesh and blood, but what? Forces of evil. Dark forces of evil in the heavenly realms, and this issue that's in the public square today comes from the same source.
Vincent DiCaro: Yeah, absolutely. And the good news, the other side of that coin is that of course, this is a strategy that can obviously be used to do good, too, right?
So if pro-life people and pro-abundant life people as we like to think of ourselves as being, we can also use the government sector, the business sector, and the faith sector to actually do good. We need to be doing that right, and we will continue to do so.
I think we'd like to close out with a word to the wise, so to speak. So for our listeners to realize that when you see news stories come up, when you see something happening in our culture around this issue, sask yourself this question.
- What is pro-choice movement or the abortion industry, who are they trying to manipulate or affect here?
- Are they trying to affect the government?
- Are they trying to affect the law?
- Are they trying to affect the business sector?
- Are they trying to affect the church?
Roland Warren: It's all that together. And what that does is it gives you the wisdom of how to respond. So if it is in the government sector, then you know that you have to have sort of a government response to that in terms of how you do that. In other words, you need to be calling the government to protect the vulnerable.
If it's in the business sector, then what do you need to be doing? Well, you need to be calling the businesses forward to protect the vulnerable. So if you have companies that say, "Well, we're going to give all this money to help a woman have an abortion in whatever stage she wants," well, as a consumer, you need to challenge. You say, "Well, what are you doing to help a woman bring her child into the world?" Because you can actually see how helping a woman have an abortion through a business transaction actually is good for business. She doesn't have to leave work, she's not off time, she doesn't have all the issues that come with parenting and all that stuff.
Vincent DiCaro: They don't have to pay maternity leave.
Roland Warren: Absolutely. So it's actually a cost-effective thing. It's not a righteous thing, if you will, to help a woman have an abortion through a business construct. It's actually purely a mercantile sort of transaction.
And then in the faith sector, you have the same kinds of things. If we have those who profess to be followers of Christ who then want to support a pro-choice worldview, then you have a way that you talk to them in the context of, "Help me understand, again, how supporting abortion fulfills the great commandment to love God and to love your neighbor as yourself, and also how it fulfills the great commission to make disciples and to teach them to obey all that I've taught you?" So you have a strategy against each one of those kinds of areas where the pro-choice movement, or any movement for that matter, tries to challenge what God has put in the public square to be righteous and to be just.