Hallmark Holiday for Unborn Child?
Rochester Area Right To Life
The Unborn Child Needs a New 'Hallmark Holiday'
Commentary by Chris
Monday February 26, 2007
If people can still be nice to each other after all our centuries of mayhem, some credit should go to our greeting card industry. It is our greeting cards that have generated our Father's Days, Mother's Days, Secretary Days, Boss Days and so on. These are rather inaccurately called "Hallmark holidays" - not because Hallmark created these so-called holidays, but because the international greeting card community thrives on them.
Among commercially savvy Asians, the greeting card industry has also promoted White Day - basically an encore of Valentine's Day a month later - as well as Black Day, where single people meet and are nice to each other over a noodle dinner.
No greeting card company can claim credit for Groundhog Day; that day was created by 18th-century German settlers of Pennsylvania who had to settle for groundhogs popping up to ground level and warmer weather as a form of entertainment.
In its day, Groundhog Day was to Pennsylvania Dutch country what Super Bowl Sunday is for us. Even with our omniscient forms of modern entertainment, the mere designation of a "Groundhog Day" has practically elevated this lowly little rodent into the status and safety of a national mascot.
I have nothing at all against groundhogs, but I do have an idea that might be even more helpful than a national holiday for a poor woodchuck. This would be a day that celebrates the unborn human child.
In particular, this recognition would be helpful at a time when so many dismissive things are said about our unborn children in our culture and among too many of our political leaders.
It is easy to see the results of this disdain. Even small sacrifices for the unborn child are made grudgingly these days. According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, more than 20 percent of American pregnancies are nicotine-affected, more than 18 percent are alcohol exposed, and more than 5 percent are exposed to drugs such as marijuana, cocaine and heroine.
I doubt that anyone would dream of spiking Mother's Day candy to a helpless mother even for a day, but millions of our unborn children must live with drug intake day after day. This situation is especially precarious in the first trimester, when the embryo increases in size by more than 2.5 million times. During this spectacular growth period, there is practically no strength left in the embryo to fight off any kind of destructive outside force, so it is in this critical phase that practically all known abnormalities in the child are developed.
For the substance-exposed newborn, the best hope lies in recovery after a withdrawal. But any delicate brain cells that perish against an attack of destructive drugs do not grow back and replenish themselves, as do other cells.
My own experience in teaching special education classes to extremely handicapped students has shown me too many tiny eyes under drooping eyelids and flattened cheeks that are characteristic of a severe fetal alcohol syndrome.
However, would a "Hallmark holiday" change our whole national attitude toward unborn children and bring us all to a feeling that they are not just human life, but very important human life at that?
To help answer this question, I have rehearsed this column at some of my jacuzzi sittings - as I usually do with my published commentaries. One good thing about jacuzzis is that unlike cocktail parties, people do not just walk away from you if they disagree with your views. On most days, jacuzzi people are determined to finish their 15 minutes of hot-water time, no matter how much they may dislike the social and political thinking shared with them.
And so I have discovered that when I have brought up a "holiday for the unborn" to my jacuzzi associates, the so-called "pro-choice" types react as if this were equivalent to a holiday honoring Americans on death row.
In fact, the pro-choice vocabulary seems to have words for issues of the unborn child only so long as it is about this child being available for medical termination.
If I say, "Would you be OK if death row were eliminated both for murdering criminals and the unborn child?" some admit they would be fine with all murderers getting reprieved from death, but they feel no such reprieve should be given to all unborn children.
Since Groundhog Day has saved America's favorite rodents from ever being subject to public execution, I have sometimes asked my jacuzzi debaters to compare the success record of groundhogs to unborn children.
Frankly, at this point, I have sometimes been accused of having a "dumb" argument. However, speaking as a former embryo myself, I am proud to share the same embryonic experience that helped prepare George Washington and Abraham Lincoln to live correctly in this difficult world.
I am even proud to share the same pre-born experience of former embryos Barbara Boxer and Dianne Feinstein. What groundhog has ever reached their heights?
Surely, the only difficulties a special day for the unborn could present would be to the so-called pro-choice culture desperately trying to convince anyone that the pre-natal human life is not so important. On every other level - as with any other so-called Hallmark holiday - a national day of celebration always has more love and money circulating than the humdrum day it preceded.
I feel certain that some of those lavish maternity shops in Santa Clarita that have long played second fiddle to candy stores on Valentine's Day will second me in this argument.
Chris Sharp lives in Saugus. His column reflects his own views, and not necessarily those of The Signal.
Copyright: The Santa Clarita
Valley Signal, California, reprinted with permission
RARTL Updated April, 2007
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