Words Are Important

By J.C. Willke, MD

Words are important. Words are powerful. The words we or the pro-abortion activists use very clearly and frequently shape the value system of those who listen. Their use of the word “pro-choice” is no accident. It’s the last major argument they have, that a woman has a right to choose. But every time we call them that, we reinforce their argument and help them kill babies. Therefore, we must call them pro-abortion.

In addition, there are other more subtle words to use. For example, I suggest you not speak of them “doing” abortions, but rather of “committing” abortions. To do so immediately places a cloud or stigma over that abortion being done.

Almost everyone speaks of experimenting on an embryo and then “destroying it”. Please, never use that phrase again. This human embryo is experimented upon and then he or she is “killed”. There is a dramatic difference in what you are saying. It’s biologically correct, and the impact on the listener should be very definite.

I've compiled a list of suggestions that can frequently improve your ability to communicate the pro-life message. When needed, I’ve also provided specifics why one phrase is better than the other. You are already using some of them, while others you are not. But do, by all means, take them seriously. Lives hang in the balance, so we must do our level best to protect them.

You Should Say:

You Should Not Say:

Killing a baby during delivery Partial-birth abortion/alone
"The great majority of people in the US do not know what partial-birth abortion is. Accordingly, many are not opposed. If, in addition to PBA, you say "killing a baby during delivery," they stop short, their jaws drop and you'll get an immediate reaction.
             
Research cloning/clone and kill Therapeutic cloning
Cloning is cloning. In this case, a living human is experimented upon and then killed.  The word is research. It is certainly not therapeutic.
             
Human embryo implants Fertilized egg implants
"The fertilized egg stage lasts one day. Using this term dehumanizes this single cell human being. On day two, cell division occurs, and the proper term is "embryo" or best of all "living human embryo".  The fertilized egg stage lasts one day. Using this term dehumanizes this single cell human being.  On day two, cell division occurs, and the proper term is "embryo" or best of all "living human embryo".
             
Fertilization Conception
Fertilization is an exact biologic term. The term conception has been changed in many peoples' minds to include implantation at one week of life.
             
Abortion mill/chamber/killing center Abortion clinic
A "clinic" calls up an image, in their minds, of a place of healing, which it is not.
             
Abortionist Abortion provider/Doctor
These hired killers do not deserve the dignity of the title doctor. Call them abortionists.
             
NARAL NARAL Pro-choice America
By changing their name to include "pro-choice," they are trying to force us to use their definition. Resist it. Continue to call them only NARAL.
             
Birth dearth Population explosion
There is no population explosion. Every Western nation, and increasingly many third-world nations, now have birthrates sharply below replacement level. The problem before the mid-century will not be too many people, but too few young people to take care of too many old people.
             
Disqualifying issue Single issue
The words single issue, in recent years, have acquired a very negative meaning. Disqualifying issue is much more descriptive and states exactly what it is.
             
Kill Destroy
When you talk of destroying the embryo after experimentation, you dehumanize, for we destroy things. When you say kill, you emphasize humanity.
             
Kill an unborn baby Terminate a pregnancy
Everyone reading this terminated his or her mother's pregnancy - most at nine months.
             
Mother Pregnant woman
Mother is a much softer word, calling for love and compassion by the reader.
             
Abortion Procedure
Fetal handicap Fetal deformity
Handicap calls forth in our minds, "I want to help". Deformity calls forth revulsion, turn away, "I don't want to look".
             
Assault rape, forcible rape Rape
Using the word rape alone includes statutory rape, which is intercourse, consensual or otherwise, with a minor. To use assault or forcible also separates it from the more vague and specious terms of marital rape and date rape.
             
Human life Person
Human life is definitive-this is human, this is alive. Person can be defined in 14 different ways and a government, by its laws, can define who is a person.
             
Place baby in a pair of loving arms Give her baby away
To "give her baby away" sounds negative, almost calloused.
             
Protective legislation Anti-abortion laws
Pro-life people aren't against anything; they are for the life of the mother and the child, so protective is proper.
             
She is carrying a child She is expecting a child
She's not expecting, she already is carrying a child..  
When doctor kills patient Death with dignity
There's nothing very dignified about killing a patient through euthanasia. Call is what it is. A doctor kills a patient.
             
Chemical abortion Medical abortion
Chemical abortion, i.e. RU 486, is accurate and has a negative connotation. Medical abortion insinuates healing, which it is not.
             
Abortions committed Abortions done
Committed carries a very specific judgment.
National Organization For [some] women  National Organization For Women
Always qualify this. They are not the largest group of women by far. They are actually a rather small organization, which has only too major thrusts - they are pro-abortion and pro-lesbian.
             
Womb Uterus
Womb is a warmer, maternal term. Uterus is coldly medical.
   
Permissive/radical abortion laws Liberal abortion laws
Liberal always used to mean concern for the poor person. Permissive abortion doesn't much care for the baby.
             
Abortifacient pills Emergency contraceptives
Call them what they are. They are abortive.  
Safe, legal and everywhere Safe, legal and rare
    (Clinton quote)        
           
Human life with great potential Potential life
Right to Life/Pro-life Anti-abortion
Baby/Fetal Baby Fetus/ Embryo
School based sex clinics School based health clinics
Calling them sex clinics is accurate. Don't disguise this by using the word health.

This article taken from The Connector, the newsletter of Life Issues Institute.  Used with permission.
For more, visit LifeIssues.org

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