Editorial: Sure to shock
CONTROVERSY has surrounded the documentary My Foetus long before its August screening in Australia – and there is good reason why.
In part the film depicts the vacuum pump abortion of a four-week-old foetus. Such graphic images are sure to shock.
Over recent years we have been exposed to documentary films on the most intricate and wonderful surgical procedures such as the re-attachment of severed limbs, organ transplants and even operations on the brain itself. We sit in awe as the surgeon’s hands restore life.
What we are not used to seeing is the destruction of life itself.
While we may be shocked, disturbed, even distressed at the filming of the death of a foetus, we have to remember that while this is one case preserved on videoptape, up to 100,000 abortions occur in our country every year. That is the real shocker.
And shocking, too, is the conclusion that this incidence would suggest that society has become de-sensitised and accepting of abortion.
As Bishop Anthony Fisher says, one can hardly recommend that people watch such a film that shows something “unthinkable, unviewable, unshowable ... not because it doesn’t happen, but because we must be very wary of normalising and trivialising something so terrible”.
The bishop is expecting the film to make many face some hard facts they have long preferred not to face. He also believes it will spark a “time of silent grief” among women who have experienced abortion, something which “not only kills their children but a little part of themselves”.
Others, including the Federal Health Minister, Mr Abbott, urge us to watch the film so we can better understand the “brutal business” of abortion.
What we need now is a follow-up documentary outlining practical options to abortion and the fostering of a mentality in this country that will help provide the support, moral and monetary, for those alternatives.