“A Note on _Unplanned_”Categories: Meditations
This past weekend, the movie Unplanned opened. It follows the transformation of a woman named Abby Johnson from abortion-clinic worker to pro-life activist. Suffice it to say that the reaction from the secular left has not been ecstatic. It received an R rating from the MPAA for its graphic depictions of abortions. Strange. I didn’t know a depiction of a medical procedure could be graphic.
Theater owners have refused to run it. Reviewers have generally ignored it, and those who have seen it have evaluated it on progressive-morality (“Worst. Movie. Ever.”) rather than artistic grounds. Even the movie’s Twitter feed went down on opening night, for reasons that have yet to be adequately explained.
If you will pardon the pun, we’ve seen this movie before. Back in the day, the sensational Gosnell trial was roundly ignored by the mainstream media. So too was the film produced about it. Pro-life Supreme-Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh was treated to the most impressive smear campaign in recent memory, with uncorroborated accusations treated as gospel and fabrications advanced as plausible.
Just ‘cause you’re paranoid doesn’t mean they aren’t out to get you.
With a little thought, the reason for this one-sided narrative becomes obvious. It’s not about the truth of the matter. In their heart of hearts, everybody knows that abortion is about killing babies, whether or not they will admit it. Instead, it is about the progressive idol of sexual autonomy, the idea that everybody should get to have all the unrestricted sex they want without consequences.
However, sex as designed by God is a consequential act. Its most significant consequence is the creation of new life. Once you have to reckon with those consequences, the idol of sexual autonomy is revealed to have feet of clay. The only way for progressives to resolve the problem is to make it possible for the consequences to. . . go away.
See? No harm done! Continue fornicating!
Unfortunately for them, the pro-choice case started out weak and is getting weaker. Viability used to be the buzzword for distinguishing between a baby and a clump of cells. However, as medical technology continues to advance, babies born as early as 21 weeks now have a chance at survival. The day may come when even an embryo can be nurtured outside the womb.
This reveals what always has been true: the pro-choice position is based on magical thinking. What you want something to be—in this case, a fetus—determines what it is. The wanted fetus is a baby to be defended with an arsenal of medical might; the unwanted fetus is a malignant growth to be scraped out and discarded. If that’s the argument you have to defend, then, yeah, you’re going to do whatever you can to shut the other side up.
One final thought, though. The treatment of Unplanned reveals a great deal about the abortion debate, but it also reveals a great deal about the mass-entertainment elite. They want to stifle Unplanned because they believe that if watched, it will have a powerful effect on the moral convictions of its audience. They believe that movies are very effective propaganda.
What does that tell us about their goals with the movies that they do produce, that they do promote? What does it tell us about all the other movies that we watch?