Whether or not to show graphic images is something pro-lifers disagree on. I do show them, but some equally dedicated prolifers do not. Many worry about women who have had abortions and how they would cope with seeing them. In this passage Theresa Burke, a therapist who works with post-abortion women, addresses this. This is taken from Priests for Life :
“Facing the truth and freeing oneself from deception is, in fact, integral to what healing is all about. That is why Dr. Theresa Burke, a psychologist who founded Rachel’s Vineyard, the world’s largest ministry for healing after abortion, and a ministry of Priests for Life, wrote that the use of graphic images, which impelled her into the fight against abortion, has an important place in the pro-life fight.
Through her extensive experience, Burke has seen the range of reaction such images can provoke. These images disturb not just the mothers and fathers of an aborted child, but the aunts and uncles and especially the grandparents. Yes, these images can wound those who have an abortion in their family, but so do more benign images, like the sight of a pregnant woman or an ultrasound or the cry of a newborn.
Burke acknowledges that some find it easier to attack the pro-lifer who shows the image than to look within at the grief and shame those involved in an abortion bury deep within their hearts. “Those that zealously defend abortion rights often respond to graphic images like a culture of eating disordered bulimics,” wrote Burke. “They simply throw up and out what they refuse to digest.” That much said, Burke reminds us, “The vivid truth spoken through a photograph that can resurrect trauma can also break denial.”
Theresa Burke and J Kevin Burke “Let’s Talk about Graphic Pictures” on the Priests for Life Page Looking Abortion in the Eye, Accessed September 11, 2014
Quoted in Rev. Frank Pavone Abolishing Abortion: How You Can Play a Part in Ending the Greatest Evil of Our Day (Nashville, Tennessee: Nelson Books, 2015) 170
Share on Facebook