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Why pro-lifers shouldn’t support the coronavirus lockdown

'The pro-life argument is not that we must do everything to oppose death at all costs...The pro-life argument is we will never intentionally kill an innocent human being.'
Wed May 6, 2020 - 10:00 am EST
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May 6, 2020 (LifeSiteNews) – Even as some states in the U.S. begin the process of “reopening,” millions of people in America and across the world are still on lockdown due to the coronavirus.  

In a recent article published through the Christian Research Institute, pro-life apologist Scott Klusendorf argues that these lockdowns aren’t aligned with pro-life values. Klusendorf is a renowned speaker for the Life Training Institute and trains others to passionately defend life. 

In today’s episode of The Van Maren Show, Jonathon speaks with Klusendorf about why he sees a fundamental flaw in locking down the country under the guise of preventing people from getting coronavirus.  

Klusendorf explains that his recent article, Covid-19 Do Pro-life Principles Require A Sustained Shut Down of the Economy? Who Decides?, came after a fairly public social media debate with other well-known pro-lifers.  

Watch the full interview:

“The thesis is basically this, that in lifting the economic shutdown, we are not violating pro-life principles. And then secondly, doctors alone should not be the ones setting policy.” 

Klusendorf was surprised by how people clung to the dichotomy that the lockdown was a simple choice of life versus profits. The lockdown prioritized life while staying open emphasized selfish profit mongers.  

“The issue here is not lives versus profits. The issue here is how should pro-lifers respond to save the most lives given the pandemic we've been dealt?” 

Klusendorf sees the lockdown as motivated by the worldview that a market economy is evil and exploits the poor. The research, Klusendorf says, shows the opposite. Market economies, “when they're undergirded with the rule of law and a robust moral culture, actually do more to lift people out of poverty than any other thing you can point to.”  

“The pro-life argument is not that we must do everything to oppose death at all costs. That is not the pro-life argument. The pro-life argument is we will never intentionally kill an innocent human being.” 

It is important to keep in mind the benefits to millions that the economy provides – most importantly, keeping food on people’s tables. Klusendorf argues that it is important to consider the impacts on life of shutting down the economy. Surgeries such as bypass surgeries and other lifesaving procedures have been considered non-essential. People are struggling to make ends meet after being laid off. Addicts cannot attend their support groups, which combined with the isolation is a recipe for relapse. Additionally, mental health issues are skyrocketing as people deal with layoffs and being at home. Suicides have already started to increase.  

Listen to the full interview:

“In the pursuit of other intrinsic goods, we will allow for the possibility of death that we don't intend it.” 

Klusendorf makes an important distinction between intrinsic evil and prudential evil. Intrinsic evil is something that is always evil, irregardless of circumstances, such as abortion or euthanasia. Prudential evil is an evil that is dependent upon the circumstances. War falls into this category; it can be a prudential good or evil depending on the circumstances.  

Klusendorf sees this misunderstanding of the types of evil as the foundation for why some pro-lifers don’t always vote for the pro-life candidates. Life is the most important issue if one understands intrinsic evils. 

We need to realize that we cannot make the coronavirus vanish by staying at home. We must instead work to find the best solution by weighing all of the options. Klusendorf argues that doctors alone should not be allowed to decide when the lockdown begins and ends. Economists and other professionals who can bring an understanding of the broader implications must also be part of this decision.  

A doctor cannot tell someone what the shutdown will do the economy, nor can an economist tell someone how coronavirus will impact him, or how a lockdown will change the spread of disease. For this reason, multiple experts need to be consulted.  

Don’t miss this great conversation on the lockdowns and why you can oppose them and still be pro-life.  

You can read Klusendorf’s article in entirety here. To learn more about the Life Training Institute click here.  

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  abortion, life training institute, scott klusendorf, the van maren show

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