A Tale of Two Victims

Two news stories in the last month illustrate a profound truth about the difference between secular society and Christian truth. The first involves Shannon Faulkner, who as we all know hoped to become the first female cadet at the Citadel, the state-supported military college in South Carolina. The other involves Norma McCorvey, better known as Jane Roe of Roe versus Wade. Both of these women were used as battering rams, human weapons in the war to advance political agendas. That they were used as ideological mules is not lost on either woman. On the day Shannon Faulkner left the Citadel—after spending most of her first week in the campus infirmary—she announced that it would not do her lawyers any good if she stayed on and suffered a nervous breakdown. Her lawyers? Those were the very people who kept pressing the overweight, underprepared 20-year-old to stick it out. I'm reminded of a prizefighter who, after being knocked down by a brutal opponent, apologizes to his manager, despite his manager's complicity in his failure. Norma McCorvey also knows what it's like to be treated as a human battering ram. Slick, feminist attorney Sarah Weddington didn't tell the poor and pregnant McCorvey that abortion was easily available in Mexico. As McCorvey explained later, Weddington wanted to keep her pregnant in order to achieve her own ideological goal: a court decision. Once that goal was achieved—that is, legalized abortion and fame and fortune for Weddington—McCorvey was tossed aside like an empty can. And when McCorvey accepted Christ—and announced she was now pro-life, her former allies dropped even the veneer of friendship. Scoffed abortion leader Susan Hill, "It was [McCorvey's] . . . situation that was the symbol for the movement, not . . . McCorvey herself." That attitude, you see, is in direct contrast to how McCorvey's new, Christian friends treated her. She says she's finally found people who care about her as a person, not as an ideological water carrier. That both Faulkner and McCorvey feel bruised by their experiences as ideological pawns shouldn't surprise us. Ideology has produced enormous suffering. The victims were recently tallied by Professor R.J. Rummel who found that while the wars of this century have claimed 39 million lives, people murdered by governments—usually their own—numbers 170 million. Murderous ideologies share the belief that individuals are expendable in order to "save" humanity to serve their ideological goals. By contrast, Christianity recognizes the primacy of individuals who, despite their fallen nature, are more important than any set of political ideas. C.S. Lewis spoke to this truth when he pointed out that civilizations come and go, but individuals are eternal, and must be treated accordingly. That's why you and I need to use examples like this to teach our neighbors what a profound difference Christianity makes. People like Norma McCorvey and Shannon Faulkner are treated as mere pawns of political agendas—and then tossed aside after they've served the almighty ideology. Christianity on the other hand, treats people as human beings, infinitely precious because they are created.


Chuck Colson


  • Facebook Icon in Gold
  • Twitter Icon in Gold
  • LinkedIn Icon in Gold

Sign up for the Daily Commentary