Last weekend, I was in Memphis speaking to a group of 1,200 attendees at the LifeChoices Banquet. LifeChoices has been helping women in the greater Memphis area facing a crisis pregnancy since 1986. In 1987, LifeChoices became a state-licensed child-placing agency that has found loving homes for children who would have otherwise been aborted.
Two years ago, they added a number of medical services, including ultrasound and diagnostic pregnancy testing and, more recently, opened a counseling center and medical clinic minutes from three abortion clinics. It was an honor to applaud LifeChoices’ fine work on behalf of the unborn.
On my return, energized by my interaction with LifeChoices, I noticed a Fox News interview with Supermodel Kathy Ireland. In it, Kathy explained why she is no longer pro-choice. That got my attention. While it may be fashionable amongst celebrities to maintain a pro-abortion position, Kathy, who appeared in Sports Illustrated three times as well as in a host of women’s magazines, was moved by the evidence—not the politics—of life.
She says, “My entire life I was pro-choice—who was I to tell another woman what she could or couldn’t do with her body? But when I was 18, I became a Christian and I dove into the medical books, I dove into science.” But her journey from pro-choice to pro-life didn’t happen overnight.
When Kathy married her husband Greg, who is an emergency room medical doctor, she immersed herself in his collection of books from medical school. She explains, “What I read was astounding and I learned that at the moment of conception a new life comes into being. The complete genetic blueprint is there, the DNA is determined, the blood type is determined, the sex is determined, the unique set of fingerprints that nobody has had or ever will have is already there.”
Still, she wasn’t quick to abandon her views.
“I called Planned Parenthood and begged them to give me their best argument and all they could come up with that it is really just a clump of cells and if you get it early enough it doesn’t even look like a baby,” Kathy told Fox News. “Well, we’re all clumps of cells and the unborn does not look like a baby the same way the baby does not look like a teenager, a teenager does not look like a senior citizen. That unborn baby looks exactly the way human beings are supposed to look at that stage of development. It doesn’t suddenly become a human being at a certain point in time.”
When Planned Parenthood’s arguments failed to fortify her pro-abortion position, she turned to science. “I’ve also asked leading scientists across our country to please show me some shred of evidence that the unborn is not a human being. I didn’t want to be pro-life, but this is not a woman’s rights issue but a human rights issue.”
After much research and soul searching, Kathy, now an outspoken pro-life advocate, concluded that “no justification is adequate” to take the life of an unborn child. The only exception she makes is when the life of the mother is at risk. She’s especially grieved that women aren’t told the truth about when life begins, saying, “Women are not given all the facts, they’re told it is a harmless procedure and now it has turned into such a political football.”
I commend Kathy for speaking out with courage and conviction, and I applaud LifeChoices as well as the thousands of crisis pregnancy centers (CPC) around the country for their vital role in defense of the unborn. If you are in a position to give of your time or resources to support a local CPC, allow me to encourage you to do so. And, why not point your teens or young people you work with to Kathy’s story. Pray that it inspires them to take a stand for life.