SOCIAL ECOLOGY & DEMOGRAPHY

Every Tuesday and Thursday from 2:00 – 3:15 I am sitting in Room 218 of the Liberal Arts Building at UCO. The course title is “Ecology & Demography.” Basically, it is a population class. We talk about mortality, fertility, migration, and really anything that deals with population. Yesterday was a different kind of day for that class. I left extremely frustrated, irritated, and angered. As I walked to my car it felt as if all of my energy was quickly leaving me. My heart was hurting. 

Because this is a population class, we look at a lot of statistics. Most of the things that we discuss are factually based and there is not a lot room for personal ideologies or values. As I already noted above, yesterday was different. We were discussing the various reasons for why fertility rates have dropped and continue to drop. Reasons included education, social norms and expectations, contraceptives, abortions, conflicts and wars, government controls, and so on.

Dr. Michalikova took this opportunity to use her platform to advocate for abortion. Statistics suggest that in America, four out of every ten pregnancies will result in an abortion. My professor and many of my peers jumped at the opportunity to tell of their support for abortion and their dismay that we still have people trying to advocate for the unborn. One student pointed out that men write the laws here in America and that it is not fair to women because it is a choice for them to make about their bodies. Dr. Michalikova added that in reality, abortion is a woman’s reproductive right.

We then took a few minutes to talk about the availability of abortion here in America. It baffled my professor that in many areas people have to drive over 350 miles to obtain an abortion. We talked about how some states are making it more difficult to obtain an abortion and that they are trying to “educate” women on what they are doing.

As this fifteen minute or so discussion happened, I sat there in my seat quietly. My frustration, irritation, and anger all continued to increase. I knew that if I expressed my thoughts I would essentially be feeding myself to the wolves and that would further increase my anger level, likely causing me to be hateful. I was certain that if I spoke up I would be displaying the fruit of the flesh instead of the fruit of the spirit. Although I wanted to, I said nothing.

Class dismissed and I went straight to George, my Ford Escape, to try and calm my spirit. I spent a good thirty minutes talking to God and thinking on the discussion in class. Since then, I have continually been thinking about this abortion topic. These are a couple of my thoughts.

It is a matter of life. Period. End of discussion. We must acknowledge that the unborn is indeed a life. Believers in the Lord Jesus Christ must most certainly acknowledge this. This is not a trivial matter. This is not about a woman’s reproductive rights. This is not about the government seeking to oppress women. This is not about political platforms. This is not about anything else other than life. Sure, there are a lot of other things in the discussion, and rightfully so, but the supreme issue at hand is life.

Politicians can debate it. Scientists can research it. Philosophers can ponder it. But at the end of the day, all day and every day, it is indeed a life in the womb. God knew this individual before he or she was conceived. He had a plan for this individual before he or she was in the womb. Scripture tells us that God knit together and formed this individual while in his or her mother’s womb. And so if it is a life in the womb, it is a matter worth fighting for.

Wrongly so we have convinced ourselves that we are magicians. When someone finds out that they are expecting, it is indeed talked about as if he or she is a real person. We talk to children while they are in the womb. Mothers alter their diets and activities to make sure that the are doing what is best for the child within them. Special healthcare is given to the mother and we carefully and closely monitor the progress within her. However, when someone decides that they do not want to continue on with the pregnancy, he or she ceases to be a child and they become a fetus or mass of cells and tissue. If we want the child, it is a child. If we do not want the child, it is simply a fetus. Society worldwide has bought into this lie that it is a child if we want him or her to be or it is mass of cells if we do not want it to be a child. This is foolishness. What is in the womb does not magically change depending on what we want it to be.

I always hear the argument made that males should have no say in this process because they cannot become pregnant. They do not have to carry the child till birth. It is not their body that holds the unborn and allows it to develop and grow. Somehow, this disqualifies them from advocating for the unborn. This makes no sense to me. A person should not have to experience something firsthand to be able to support, defend, and speak up for someone else. I am not an abused child, but I can still advocate for them. I do not go to bed hungry every night, but I can still advocate for those who do. I am not a minority, but I can still advocate for those who are. I am not mentally or physically handicapped, but I can most certainly advocate for them. I think you get the point.

Conservatives are often called out because while they claim to be prolife they also support capital punishment. I see this as a weak effort to defend someone’s right to abort an unborn child. On one hand you have a group who are wanting to protect innocent, unborn children. On the other hand you have a group of people wanting to protect convicted murderers, rapists, and terrorists. While in my head I do not understand this, I am willing to compromise.

You read correctly. Tommy Merritt is willing to compromise. If I need to be anti-capital punishment so that we can stop abortions from being legal and readily available, I will be glad to make that compromise. And I am not done yet. People also suggest that conservatives only care for the child while it is in the womb, but once it comes out they forget about it and do nothing to better his or her life. Okay, if you want to increase my taxes so that we can provide a number of free social services to families, I will gladly see an additional portion of my earnings taken from me so that we can protect the most innocent and defenseless members of humanity.

I will quickly compromise on a number of issues if it means that we begin to value and protect life. So long as it does not require me to go against the teachings of scripture, I will compromise on just about anything. Life is that important to me because it is a gift from God. God is the giver and sustainer of life. I acknowledge this and am so thankful that He continues to give me life each day.

I mentioned that I spent some time in prayer after class. I prayed for my professor and for my peers. I asked that God would cause them to think more about this, that He would cause them to recognize that it is really a life in the womb. Their hearts are hardened on the subject and I pray and hope that their hearts would be softened. I am asking that something would happen in their lives that would cause them to value life and to see life as God does.

I also prayed for the Church. Most people look to government for solutions to social issues. I, however, think the Church should be stepping in here. I am beginning to believe that the government is having to do so much because the Church is failing to do so much. We should be supporting and aiding the family. We should be a tremendous resource to families. We should be supporting places like Hope Pregnancy Centers with our time, resources, and prayer. As a body of believers, we should be all about life! This should be evident in every ministry of the Church. We should be all about investing in families. God, use us.

4 thoughts on “SOCIAL ECOLOGY & DEMOGRAPHY

  1. Thanks for this heartfelt post, Tommy. This is why we should continually pray for our college students, professors, and those who minister in the midst of these battles. God will show you a way to speak your thoughts, even if to one person.

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    1. Thanks Alethea! I find great comfort and encouragement knowing that there are people who do pray for me. I hope that many of our members are praying for us younger people on a regular basis and I also hope that my peers find the same comfort and encouragement as do I in knowing that SHBC people are indeed praying for us!

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  2. Tommy, you’re right on. You are so good with words. I pray that God will use your life to be an inspiration to others & lead them to come to know Christ in a personal way.

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