I remember watching the movie Glory, a story from the American Civil War based on the personal letters of Colonel Robert Gould Shaw who was the commanding officer of the 54th Massachusetts Volunteer Infantry, the first formal unit of the US Army to be made up entirely of African American men.
Shaw insisted that the men were worthy of being deployed for combat, and volunteered the 54th infantry to lead an assault on Fort Wagner near Charleston, South Carolina. He led the men in an initial, noble charge upon the fort. Facing certain death he rallied the men onward.
Colonel Shaw was killed, along with 29 of his men; 24 more later died of wounds; 15 were captured; 52 were missing in action and never accounted for; and 149 were wounded. Although Union forces failed to take and hold the fort, the 54th became known for its courage during battle, encouraging further enlistment of African-American troops. President Abraham Lincoln noted that the bravery of these men helped secure the final victory.
They gave their lives. But for what? At the end of the movie all you see are dead men being thrown in a grave like garbage. It seems so senseless, so vain, so unnecessary. But it did change things.
I felt the same way watching the Gosnell trial. What was the point of it all? No one needed to die. No one needed to lose a child. No one needed to spend life in prison.
Neither will Gosnell be killed in his battle. He is the killer. He is found guilty, convicted. He gave up his right to appeal so that he could avoid the death penalty, as Troy Newman of Operation Rescue has pointed out. Unlike the courageous men of the 54th infantry, Gosnell wasn’t trying to make his country a better place. He was trying to profit from the vulnerable and innocent. He didn’t go into a battle for freedom, he fought against the right to life itself.
Neither will his life end the way the lives of his victims ended. He won’t die by an induced, painless, “humane” death. He won’t die from a lethal dose of poison or a snip of the spine.
No, when given his last choice as a free human being in the United States of America, he chose life.
He chose life even if it means he will suffer and be unwanted.
He chose life even if it means he will be totally dependent on others to take care of him.
It would have been murder if someone had killed him in the outside world.
It would not have been murder if the authorities had killed him in prison.
Prison is the womb he has chosen to live in, and not to die in.
Something to think about.
Maybe the memory of the dead will help secure final victory in the war of abortion.