A lot of attention has been given the last few weeks to a some videos released by The Center for Medical Progress. The videos show representatives of Planned Parenthood trading in the body parts of aborted babies. It’s a ghastly and ghoulish business. But to hear some people speak, the outrage is entirely misplaced. It’s not the crushing and dismemberment of the youngest and most vulnerable human beings among us that should disturb us, but the fact that the frightful proceedings should ever be brought to light.
Watching Planned Parenthood and its media and celebrity apologists attempt to deflect criticism reminds me of one of Jesus’ more humorous—but scathing—word pictures: the one in which he accused certain hypocrites of straining out gnats and swallowing camels (Matt. 23:24). The image is designed to point out the pretentious hypocrisy of paying scrupulous attention to relatively inconsequential matters while ignoring fundamental moral concerns. Jesus set up the striking image by pronouncing woe upon those who diligently tithed the smallest garden herbs like mint and dill and cumin, but neglected the very heart and soul of the law: justice, mercy, and faithfulness.
Watching the whole Planned Parenthood debacle convinces me that there is a whole lotta camel-swallowing going on. Below, I offer a few tips to help readers determine if they too might be straining out gnats while swallowing camels…I mean aside from the painful lump in their throats.
You might be straining out gnats and swallowing camels if…
- You object to the deception involved in gaining undercover video of Planned Parenthood representatives discussing the crushing and dismemberment of preborn children in order to harvest their organs, but do not object to the crushing, dismemberment, and organ harvesting
- You object to the “tone” of the discussion in the videos, but not to the deeds being discussed
- You find the discussion of the acquisition of fetal body parts gross but do not find it morally objectionable
- You quibble about whether Planned Parenthood sells the body parts of the children they kill in utero or whether they are simply being reimbursed “to cover costs associated with collecting and transporting the tissue”
- You use an "ends justifies the means" argument in order to defend the killing of unborn children in the hope of using their harvested organs to find a cure for cancer and other diseases
And while we’re at it, let’s toss this in, too: You might be straining at gnats and swallowing camels if…
- You feel more moral outrage by the killing of a single lion (no matter how beloved) than by the killing of 3,000 human beings every day