Why no one should dismiss the pro-life position as “just religious”

Some people may dismiss pro-life arguments on the ground that they are “religious.”  Scott Klusendorf gives seven reasons why that response is not acceptable:

1) “A non-believer can recognize that human embryos have value in virtue of the kind of thing they are rather than some function they perform” (57).

2) “Second, just because the pro-life view is consistent with a particular religious viewpoint does not mean it can only be defended with arguments exclusive to that viewpoint” (57).  Consider the toddler. . .

3) “Third, the claim that an embryo has value is no more religious than saying an infant or toddler does. . . Indeed, can a thoroughly materialistic (secular) worldview tell us why anything has value or a right to life?” (58).

4) “Fourth, even if we assume the pro-life view is essentially religious why should anyone suppose that religious truth claims don’t count as real knowledge?” (58).

5)  “Fifth, not all faith is bind.  Christianity, for example, teaches trust (knowledge) based on evidence” (59).

6) “Sixth, the “imposing religion” objection is not really an argument, but a ramrod used to silence opposition to abortion” (59).

7) “Finally, I could turn the tables on my secular critic and say, ‘Show me an argument for abortion rights that doesn’t assume some transcendent ground point.’  Here’s the problem for the strict secularist: where does the right to an abortion come from? . . . Most abortion-choice advocates think the right to abortion is fundamental. . .  Yet how can fundamental rights of any kind exist without a transcendent source of authority that grants them?” (60).


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