It is a privilege to have my priest, Bishop David Epps, as my guest today. Bishop Epps writes a weekly article for several local newspapers. Below is the article for this week, reprinted with his permission.
Two weeks ago, six people were killed and 14 wounded in what has been called the “Tucson Tragedy.” One year ago, 200,000 people were killed and 1.5 million remain homeless as a result of a devastating earthquake in the nation of Haiti. One decade ago, some 3,000 people were killed in Pennsylvania, New York, and Washington, D. C. on September 11. One generation ago, in January of 1973, the Supreme Court of the United States ruled that the killing of children in the womb was legal. Since that time, in the United States alone, the death toll is 52,000,000 boys and girls who were destroyed without ever having seen the light of day.
We often make the grave error of believing that if something is legal, then it must be moral and right. At one time in this nation it was legal for one human being to own another. Slavery was legal and many believed it to be right. No one believes this was moral and right today. It may have been legal but it was immoral.
At one time in this nation, husbands could beat, mistreat, and rape their wives without fear of legal consequences. No one believes this was moral and right today. It may have been legal but it was immoral.
At one time in this nation, children could be exploited and abused almost without restriction. In fact, if one desired to protect children, laws protecting the abuse of animals had to be invoked because there were no such laws protecting children. No one believes this was moral and right today. It may have been legal but it was immoral.
There is nothing moral or right about the destruction of any innocent life but multiply this by 52 million and the results are horrific beyond comprehension. Americans have killed nearly six times more unborn children than Hitler and the Nazis killed Jews during World War II. The United States, since the first shots of the revolution were fired, has been involved in 30 wars, including the various Indian wars, the Boxer Rebellion , the Barbary Wars, as well as more modern conflicts in Somalia, Bosnia, El Salvador, and the major wars of which we are all familiar.
The total number of U.S. military personnel killed during the entire history of the United States from 1775 through 2010 is 1,317,588. Tragic as that is, it pales in comparison to the number of American pre-born intentional deaths. There have been approximately 50 times more children killed since 1973 than the number of soldiers killed during the entire history of the Republic.
But even that is not the full story. I was born in 1951. From me came three children. From them were born 11 more children, my grandchildren. That means that in three generations there have been produced, so far, 15 people. Had I been aborted, it would have meant, not just one death, but the elimination of 15 people who are alive today. If only 10 people are given to a family in three generations, that means that not just 52,000,000 lives have been ended but, rather, a staggering 520 million! Over half a billion people do not or will not exist over the course of three generations thanks to an act that is legal. But moral? Right? Not by a long shot.
In the days to come—at some point—I have a dream and a fervent hope that abortion will join slavery, wife rape, and child abuse on the trash heap of acts that used to be legal but were so morally wretched and ethically repugnant that society could no longer bear them. Not everything legal is moral or right.
David Epps is the pastor of the Cathedral of Christ the King, 4881 Hwy 34 E., Sharpsburg, GA 30277. Services are held Sundays at 8:30 and 10:00 a.m. (www.ctkcec.org) He is the bishop of the Mid-South Diocese (www.midsouthdiocese.org) and is the mission pastor of Christ the King Fellowship in Champaign, IL. He may be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.