Murder of KS Doctor to be Ruled “Voluntary Manslaughter”?

As I’m sure I’m going to learn all too often in working on this project, crazy things in the news are going to mess with whatever “schedule” I had planned for this blog. This is one of those cases.

I was reading the Des Moines Register today in an effort to build up my awareness of the world in which I live (since Wartburg College, as is probably the case with most institutions, is kind of in a bubble of its own), and I read an article that absolutely made me sick.

On 31 May, Scott Roeder of Wichita, Kansas, walked over to Dr. George Tiller, pulled out a .22-caliber handgun, and shot Dr. Tiller in the head before a church service. Roeder pleaded guilty to premeditated first-degree murder, and as if that wasn’t enough, there were 250 witnesses that saw him do it. Open-and-shut murder case, right?

Wrong. Oh so very wrong.

Because a judge–who is supposed to be non-partisan and neutral–decided to let Roeder plead guilty to voluntary manslaughter, as the killing would “save unborn children”. For those of you who don’t realize how drastic of a difference this is, let me spell it out for you in plain language: the penalty for premeditated, first-degree, outright murder is a life sentence; the penalty for “voluntary manslaughter” is five years.

This decision makes people like The Rev. Don Spitz of Chesapeake, Virginia, extra super happy, because if a person can claim that straight-up killing a doctor for performing abortions is “voluntary manslaughter”, then it would influence more people to act, as the penalty is drastically reduced.

Here’s where things start to not make sense to me: pro-lifers around the world argue that “murder is murder,” and when you abort a fetus, you’re committing murder. That’s fine; I can handle people having what I view is an essentially backwards view of what a human life is. But when these people, in the same breath, call for the murder of doctors who terminate pregnancies, I’m left to wonder: whatever happened to “murder is murder”? If all life is precious, when does life stop being so precious as to call for murder?

This blog post is jumping ahead of a lot of things I had planned; I had three articles written and planned to post an article stating my views on abortion before anything else. But as one of my professors so eloquently put it: “Life has a way of being life, and it won’t be contained in a neat little box. Things happen that will throw you for a loop, but you just have to adapt and run with it.” No worries; those articles are still to come. But right now, human stupidity has taken center stage, and we must deal with that before we can deal with anything else.

Long story short, though: I am pro-choice, and like many pro-choicers, I don’t want women to have abortions. I don’t encourage abortions, but I’d like the option to be legal and available in case something comes up. Pro-lifers who accuse me of being a “baby killer” and a “murderer” are grossly mistaken. And with situations like this, where they actively call for the murder of doctors who are just doing their jobs, just goes to show how grossly mistaken they are.

It doesn’t make sense to me that someone would rally around a cause, stating that “all human life is precious” and must be protected, and yet can arbitrarily assign certain lives to be not-so-precious. This brings up two questions: one, are abortion doctors suddenly not human, or two, is human life actually not as precious as what was once thought?

Hopefully someone in that courtroom in Kansas will enlighten everyone with some common sense, that murder is in fact murder, and that killing a grown adult for no comprehensible reason is far worse than terminating a pregnancy.

One Response to “Murder of KS Doctor to be Ruled “Voluntary Manslaughter”?”

  1. Emily Ellen Says:

    woah good point..ive always thought those pro-life people were crazy!

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