WaPo 'On Faith' Editor Sally Quinn Fears Personhood Amendment's 'Slippery Slope'

The day before Mississippi voters went to the polls to decide whether to amend the state constitution to define "person" to include unborn children as early as the point of conception, Washington Post's Sally Quinn set out to denounce Initiative 26 on the "On Faith" blog that she edits.

Quinn, an atheist, groused that religious voters in the Magnolia State may make a significant change to the state constitution in order to protect unborn children's lives:


Attorney Brad Prewett, executive director of the “Yes on 26” campaign, was quoted as saying “It’s an opportunity for people to say that we’re made in the image of God.” And the founder of Personhood Mississippi said, “We’re just going to the heart of the matter, which is this: Is this a person or not? God says it is and science has confirmed it.”

There it is. The law of the land, which gives women the right to choose, is being challenged for religious reasons.

Of course the cornerstone of American political philosophy is that every human being is "endowed by their creator with certain unalienable rights" such as "life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness." What's more, Quinn failed to challenge the undisputable science behind the claim that, yes, a fertilized human egg is in fact, biologically speaking, a living human being.

Quinn moved on to another tired left-wing trope, working in a straw man argument about the death penalty for women who get an abortion or use birth control:

I’ve never been able to square the fact that so many of those who are in the pro-life movement are also pro-death penalty and have no problem with war. Some have even murdered people who are pro choice. Murder can be punishable by death. So if one follows that reasoning, everyone who takes a morning after pill, uses an IUD or any of more conventional ways of terminating a pregnancy could be on death row.

Quinn quickly recognized that, in fact, no one is arguing for prison time, much less the death penalty for women who get abortions. So she charged pro-lifers with hypocrisy and even worried that eventually they'd stop being hypocrites and look to shed blood of abortion patients:

There are a number of people who support the amendment, like Haley Barbour and Richard Land, who get nervous about using words like murder. Barbour is concerned about the issue of ectopic pregnancy and Land would not prosecute the women involved in ending a pregnancy. He also says that is why we have crimes that are called manslaughter.

But you can’t have it both ways. Abortion is always premeditated. You can’t call it murder and then say that the women should not be punished. Land wants to punish the doctors. Why only the doctors? The idea of not punishing a woman for deliberately cooperating in the murder of her own child is ridiculous and infantilizing. Oh, the girls just don’t know what they are doing and shouldn’t be held accountable?

[...]

Those who are anti-abortion often quote the Bible to back up their points of view. But here’s one that twists those views in knots:

In Genesis, God makes a covenant with Noah. God says, “Whoever sheds the blood of a human, by a human shall that person’s blood be shed: for in his own image, God made humankind.”

Is this the sort of draconian, literal reading of Scripture that supporters of Mississippi’s personhood amendment really want to see made law? That whoever sheds the blood of a fertilized egg, “by a human shall that person’s blood be shed”?

"When you take this issue to its final conclusion you have to see how insane it is to categorize the issue and to make absolute rules," insisted/

But apparently to Quinn it's okay to make "absolute rules" -- no state shall amend its Constitution to define unborn babies as persons -- so long as they serves the cause of abortion rights advocates.

Ken Shepherd
Ken Shepherd
Ken Shepherd is the Managing Editor for NewsBusters