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sweetsweetstephy's avatar

Why do some people who oppose abortion liken it to the Holocaust?

Asked by sweetsweetstephy (338points) November 3rd, 2012

I’ve seen these types of signs in various places, but I fail to understand why there is such a comparison. I realize it’s a scare tactic, but what is the rationale behind it?

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36 Answers

Buttonstc's avatar

I’m assuming it’s because of the sheer numbers involved in both.

There are pretty exact records kept on abortions because it’s a legal medical procedure now and those number totals are available. And they find the numbers overwhelming.

whitenoise's avatar

The rationale is that they believe abortion is murder. By linking it to what we all accept as mass murder, they want to drive that point home.

Personally, I think it’s an insult to both the potential mothers that had an abortion as well as to the victims of the holocaustand their memory.

Qingu's avatar

Pro-life people think that a brainless clump of cells is morally and politically equivalent to a thinking, conscious human being.

Millions of brainless clumps of cells have been aborted over the years; millions of human beings died in the holocaust. If you think they are morally equivalent, the comparison is apt.

If you don’t believe that a brainless clump of cells is morally equivalent to a thinking human being capable of suffering, capable of forming emotional bonds with a family and friends who will mourn him or her, then the comparison is idiotic and probably offensive.

FutureMemory's avatar

Because they have shit for brains.

amujinx's avatar

They prefer knee-jerk emotional responses over rational thinking of all sides on issues like this, so they use imagery of a horrific event to attempt to garner that type of emotional response.

trailsillustrated's avatar

HUH? Never heard of this. Opposing either is like saying the earth is flat.

YARNLADY's avatar

Wait, aren’t these the same people who say God loves life, yet all life on earth exists on the death of other life. Plus the Bible is full of this same God ordering his favorite people to kill anyone and everyone he doesn’t like. This same God even instructs his so called adversary to kill one man’s whole family just to prove the man worships him.

JenniferP's avatar

If you accept that it is murder than it is a holocaust. I believe it is murder.

rooeytoo's avatar

I never heard that comparison but it seems to me, an absurd thing to say. It is one human being taking control of their own body and its functions as opposed to one human killing another human or thousands of humans. No comparison at all.

trailsillustrated's avatar

@rooeytoo six million GA’s to you. Always a reasonable voice you are, M8.

bkcunningham's avatar

The number of abortions far surpasses those killed in the Holocaust, @Buttonstc. I would guess, because of the race and economics of the majority of women who have abortions that it appears to be a type of eugenics.

glacial's avatar

@uberbatman By that reasoning, @sweetsweetstephy has ended the abortion debate by asking this question. Well done!

whitenoise's avatar


Even if you’d consider it murder, there is a difference with the holocaust… an intent to kill another people over. Holocaust wasn’t merely murder… it was genocide.

For as far as I know, there are no people that choose for abortion in an attempt to commit genocide. Actually, of all the people I know, who had an abortion, none of them was even under the impression that they were killing a human being. So even if it were to be regarded as murder, it wouldn’t come near the vile intent of the premeditated mass murder that the holocaust was.

GracieT's avatar

@whitenoise, I agree with you about the Holocaust being genocide. I know that people see no difference, but I see the distinction in that abortion is ending one life before it begins, while the Holocaust is the killing of a sentient being. While I DO see abortion as murder, I am pro-choice. I don’t believe that I can make that choice for any other woman.

Shippy's avatar

It all boils down to (no analogy meant) getting rid of unwanted humans.

Ron_C's avatar

I find the anti-abortion crowd hypocritical. They say that life is sacred but don’t have much of a problem when one from their group decides to kill a doctor and fire-bomb a building. They also support the death penalty and oppose universal health care.

The only people that seem consistent in their beliefs and actions are the Catholics. The oppose abortion and the death penalty. They also go to great lengths to care for orphans and unwanted children. The right wing protestants are just mean and authoritarian.

JenniferP's avatar

Whitenoise-I agree that there may be ignorance but the result is the same. Death. And some people like to remain in ignorance too. They don’t want the inconvenience that they brought upon themselves so they rationalize. Then 5 years later when they are ready for a baby and get pregnant if someone punched them in the stomach and they miscarried they would want that person imprisoned for murder.

rooeytoo's avatar

@JenniferP – that’s interesting, I wonder if that ever happened in RL???

DrBill's avatar

I am pro-life, but I would never compare it to the holocaust, they are two totally unrelated topics.

sweetsweetstephy's avatar

Thank you, everybody. I was really confused when I saw that sign; it was offensive and the two topics are just completely unrelated! They even said that Obama was like Hitler. And I have seen the signs in a couple of places before: First time, outside a Planned Parenthood in California, and this second time outside a middle school where Joe Biden spoke in Wisconsin (which makes it even more enraging. One of the protesters was given a ticket for making two little girls cry). Both groups were Christian groups. In their mind I guess it makes sense to compare the two because they believe abortion is murder… But still. I disagree with the entire concept; it’s just ridiculous. And ironically, most of the protesters were men.

Qingu's avatar

@JenniferP the funny thing is that the Bible, the book that pro-life people seem to like so much, presents us with the exact scenario which you describe.

When people who are fighting injure a pregnant woman so that there is a miscarriage, and yet no further harm follows, the one responsible shall be fined what the woman’s husband demands, paying as much as the judges determine. If any harm follows, then you shall give life for life, eye for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot, burn for burn, wound for wound, stripe for stripe. —Exodus 21:22

So according to the Bible, killing a fetus is just punishable by a fine, whereas if the fetus’ mother is killed or even harmed it’s eye-for-an-eye. Apparently ol’ Yahweh himself does not believe that killing a fetus is equivalent to murdering a person.

whitenoise's avatar

@Qingu That is a great quote. Can you help me with where to find it in the bible? :-)

Qingu's avatar

Exodus 21:22.

JenniferP's avatar

Quingu-That is not a micarriage but if the baby is born prematurely and is unharmed. I researched it. If the baby dies the person is supposed to also die.

amujinx's avatar

@JenniferP If people are fighting with each other and happen to hurt a pregnant woman so badly that her unborn child dies, then, even if no other harm follows, he must be fined. He must pay the amount set by the woman’s husband and confirmed by judges.

That’s from the Complete Jewish Bible, which is supposedly a fairly close translation to the original Hebrew text for the first five books and changed to be more accurate to true Hebrew teachings when it goes into the new testament and is translated from the original Greek. What it actually says depends on your translation.

I will say though, the Complete Jewish Bible has one of the commandments written as, “Do not murder,” and the word “kill” used in that commandment by most other Bibles is known to be a mistranslation.

Berserker's avatar

@Qingu So according to the Bible, killing a fetus is just punishable by a fine, whereas if the fetus’ mother is killed or even harmed it’s eye-for-an-eye. Apparently ol’ Yahweh himself does not believe that killing a fetus is equivalent to murdering a person.

Ha yeah. Not much to do with this, but it kind of reminds me of the story of that Herod dude and how he got a bunch of babies killed in order to get to Jesus and to stop a potential person to eventually topple him as king. Just kinda thinking, wouldn’t God have had the power to stop all this shit?

amujinx's avatar

@Symbeline I think Epicurus covered your question pretty well: “Is god willing to prevent evil, but not able? Then he is not omnipotent. Is he able, but not willing? Then he is malevolent. Is he both able and willing? Then whence cometh evil? Is he neither able nor willing? Then why call him god?”

Berserker's avatar

Yeah I remember seeing that before on the Internet somewhere. It’s really thought provoking, actually. The only thing in all those options that would certify him as a god would be if he was able but not willing, since gods don’t necessarily have to be good. And if that’s the only option we have if God’s real…I’ll take my chances in Hell lol.

Qingu's avatar

@JenniferP, cite your research. I used the New Revised Standard Version, and I think I’ll trust the Hebrew scholars who translated that more than you.

bkcunningham's avatar

Hebrew scholars, @Qingu?

Qingu's avatar

What are you asking?

bkcunningham's avatar

Because, I call BS on your statement that Hebrew scholars translated the New Revised Standare Version. Either you are a liar or misinformed with your claims. Cite your source.

Qingu's avatar

@bkcunningham, are you actually suggesting that people on the NRSV translation committee did not know Hebrew?

What language do you think they were translating the Old Testament from?

Qingu's avatar

Or is your point that since the NRSV is an update to the RSV, it’s not a true “translation”?

Edit: Here is a list of the scholars involved:

I didn’t bother to dig up all of their CV’s online but it’s obvious that many of them know Hebrew well (you generally have to in order to be a Biblical scholar or respected theologian, along with Greek). Here are accounts from two translators that demonstrate a deep knowledge of Hebrew—they refer to the original Hebrew texts and terms:

So please clarify what exactly it is you’re arguing here.

JenniferP's avatar

@Qingu-You asked my source about Exodus 21:22. I researched it on the internet. I already knew that that scripture was in fact saying that if a woman has the baby prematurely and the baby is unharmed that the person is only fined. But after you said that I went online and many translations don’t use the word “miscarry” and I read the arguments in favor of what I am saying. They are online. You are welcome to research them the same way that I did. You praise the NRSV but I have never seen any evidence that that is any better than any other. I have talked to people who swear by the NIV or KJV. Everybody picks their own Bible that they want to go with.

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