Hours after learning that over 70 ‘pro-life groups’ like National Right to Life and their state subsidiaries, along with the ERLC, released an open letter opposing the bill to abolish abortion in the state, disparaging Louisiana abolitionists for going too far in their efforts to abolish abortion and give pre-born babies equal rights protection under the law, SBC presidential candidate Tom Ascol condemned the ERLC’s betrayal, while his challenger Bart Barber condemned those upset at getting betrayed.
and further proof that It is time to change the direction of the SBC!— Tom @tomascol (@tomascol) May 13, 2022
My fellow SBCers—get to Anaheim and let's #changethedirection
The bill, HB813 amended the Louisiana homicide codes to define “unborn child” as “an individual human being from fertilization until birth,” and “person” as “a human being from the moment of fertilization.” These redefinitions would classify abortion as homicide by including preborn children among those protected by the laws against murder, and therefore women who kill their babies in the womb would be subject to the same fines and punishments as those who kill their babies out of the womb.
The ERLC fought tooth and nail against it, saying that abortion is a tragedy not only for the child, but for the aborting mother, who is also a ‘victim’. The letter they sent said:
“let us be clear: we state unequivocally that any measure seeking to criminalize or punish women is not pro-life and we stand firmly opposed to such efforts…We will continue to oppose legislative and policy initiatives that criminalize women who seek abortions…”
However, by signing his name to this, Brent Leatherwood, the acting head of the ERLC, is expressly going against the will of Southern Baptist messengers, who passed a resolution at SBC21 which explicitly states: “we affirm that the murder of preborn children is a crime against humanity that must be punished equally under the law.”
Whereas Ascol thoroughly condemned the move, Bart Barber did not, releasing instead a video where he didn’t address it directly, but rather nagged and chastised all the people who are getting on the ERLC’s case and not playing nice.
There’s no right to abortion in the Constitution and it’s a… good idea in terms of morality to set Roe v. Wade aside because it was atrocious ethics and morals to declare that people are not people. That’s always been a bad idea, and it has been in terms of abortion, it’s high time.
I’ve got to say that my experience since this announcement has been made is that every single person who is on Southern Baptist Twitter, who’s in my timeline, is elated and celebrating at the news that Roe v Wade is perhaps about to be overturned. Something that we’ve longed for for so long, prayed for spoken about for so long.
It’s sad and counterproductive to me that anybody would take this moment of pretty much universal celebration in the Southern Baptist Convention, and turn it into a moment of accusation and attempted division of people in the convention.
Can we not take a moment with one thing and just all celebrate together something good that God has done? Anyway, I hope that we can, and I’m ready to rejoice with anybody in the Southern Baptist Convention who will rejoice with me about the end of Roe v Wade, and yet another step toward the end of abortion in the United States.
It’s unsurprising that Barber, who was instrumental in trying to see the resolution to abolish abortion crushed at the general conference, would not like how much flack the ERLC is getting over. But by having his attention focused on the wrong thing, Barber has once again shown he is unqualified to lead the convention.
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