The existence of objective moral values is often debated, with atheists denying their existence and Christian theologians affirming them. Such a matter is partially settled, however, when those atheists honest enough to admit it concede that it is objectively wrong to intentionally torture and/or kill a child for one’s own personal pleasure. This scenario demonstrates that objective moral values do exist and that intentionally killing a child for one’s own pleasure is ipso facto, flat-out and obviously wrong. In fact, we would brand anybody who thought otherwise either totally insane or just plain evil.
Now, put that ethical bombshell on the back burner and consider the science behind both conception and the subsequent human gestation period. Then consider the fact that there’s not much serious opposition in the scientific community that at conception the newly fertilized egg takes on its own unique chromosomal identity. As Harvard University Medical School Professor Micheline Matthews-Ross once testified, “It is scientifically correct to say that an individual human life begins at conception ….”
Sarah Terzo quotes both scientific textbooks and Senate Judiciary Subcommittee (April, 1981) testimonies that affirm this same reality with “a complete absence of opposing testimony (Subcommittee on Separation of Powers to Senate Judiciary Committee S-158, Report, 97th Congress, 1st Session, 1981). The significance of these scholarly and subcommittee conclusions is worth noting here and can be found in full at this link, https://www.liveaction.org/news/life-begins-at-conception-science-teaches/.
Dr. Micheline M. Mathews-Roth, Harvard Medical School, “It is incorrect to say that biological data cannot be decisive…It is scientifically correct to say that an individual human life begins at conception.”
“Father of Modern Genetics” Dr. Jerome Lejeune told the lawmakers: “To accept the fact that after fertilization has taken place a new human has come into being is no longer a matter of taste or opinion … it is plain experimental evidence. Each individual has a very neat beginning, at conception.”
Dr. McCarthy de Mere, medical doctor and law professor, University of Tennessee, testified: “The exact moment of the beginning of personhood and of the human body is at the moment of conception.”
Dr. Alfred Bongiovanni, professor of pediatrics and obstetrics, University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, concluded: “I am no more prepared to say that these early stages represent an incomplete human being than I would be to say that the child prior to the dramatic effects of puberty … is not a human being. … I have learned from my earliest medical education that human life begins at the time of conception.”
Dr. Richard V. Jaynes: “To say that the beginning of human life cannot be determined scientifically is utterly ridiculous.”
Dr. Landrum Shettles, sometimes called the “Father of In Vitro Fertilization,” notes: “Conception confers life and makes that life one of a kind.”
And on the Supreme Court ruling Roe v. Wade, “To deny a truth [about when life begins] should not be made a basis for legalizing abortion.”
Professor Eugene Diamond stated: “… either the justices were fed a backwoods biology or they were pretending ignorance about a scientific certainty.”
Gordon, Hymie, M.D., FRCP, chairman of medical genetics, Mayo Clinic, Rochester: “By all criteria of modern molecular biology, life is present from the moment of conception. … Science has a very simple conception of man; as soon as he has been conceived, a man is a man.”
Finally, I include the official Senate report: "Physicians, biologists, and other scientists agree that conception marks the beginning of the life of a human being – a being that is alive and is a member of the human species. There is overwhelming agreement on this point in countless medical, biological, and scientific writings."
Of course, Scripture made the same call when Moses reminded us that God made man in his own image and then that Adam “begat a son in his own likeness, after his image…” in Genesis 5:1-3. The “imageness” of God makes us human with said imageness being perpetuated through the parents.
Essentially, the unborn are fully human and to deny it puts “pro-choicers” in a tough spot. To deny the essential humanity of the unborn at any stage is to reject the scientific consensus, but to concede said consensus and still contend for the killing of innocent children makes one either sadly demented or disturbingly demonic.