The Value of Life – Animal and Human

An ABC News report last week was titled: Global Outrage and Worldwide Outpouring over Death of Cecil the Lion. It said, in part: “Walter Palmer, the Minnesota dentist who acknowledged hunting and killing Cecil, a beloved lion in Zimbabwe, is now the one being hounded on the Internet by protesters flooding his social media, creating online petitions …” Expletives and death threats are included.

Palmer issued a statement that despite having proper permits obtained by professional guides, he deeply regretted the early July hunt that “resulted in the taking of this lion.” He stated that he had no awareness that Cecil was part of a wildlife study and was widely known in Zimbabwe.

Meanwhile, on a separate topic, CNN News reported: “An anti-abortion group has released an online video that it says documents how Planned Parenthood is selling fetal organs for a profit, a felony, while violating medical ethics by altering normal abortion procedures so as to preserve the organs.”

“Planned Parenthood has countered that it donates the tissue for scientific research and receives only reimbursement for its expenses, which is legal. The group also says it helps people donate tissue “with full, appropriate consent from patients and under the highest ethical and legal standards.”

These two reports starkly portray an intriguing imbalance of deeply felt respect for life. On the one hand, people cry out passionately and even violently against a man who took the life of an animal in Africa. Cecil was revered as a special animal from a species of animals generally referred to as “king of the beasts.” His death obviously struck a chord among many. Terry and I have seen “Lion King” on the stage two times. We think lions are awesome animals! So do many of you!

On the other hand, Planned Parenthood, a national organization that performed 327,653 abortions in 2014 alone, is not only doing those abortions but also seems to be selling fetal body parts after the abortion is completed. While protests against abortion have been held since 1973, are they as passionate as that in Cecil the lion’s case? I’m not encouraging expletives or death threats, but peaceful persistence. How does one compare the life of an animal – as awesome as lions are – with the lives of millions of unborn children? Which life is more important – animal or human?

Since the 1973 Supreme Court decision legalizing abortion in the United States, 55 million innocent embryonic human babies have been aborted. It’s estimated that 44 million abortions occur each year throughout the world. Without seeing visual depictions of an abortion, its violent and gruesome nature simply cannot be comprehended. Check the Internet for yourself.

According to the National Pro-Life Alliance, abortion is the leading cause of death in the United States. Annually in America, 121,000 people die from accidents; 580,000 people die from cancer; 600,000 people die from heart disease; 1.6 million unborn babies die from abortion.

People valued the life of a lion with a name – Cecil. How much more should be valued the life, embryonic and fetal though it may be, of every child in the womb of his or her mother – a living being already with an audible heartbeat only 12 weeks after conception! Lord, have mercy!