Responding to Zachary Conover at Apologia: Feeding the Beast

I would like to start out by saying that I am ordinarily a fan of Apologia Studio’s work and I have great respect for their ministry. I also openly admit I don’t know much about Zachary Conover and have every reason to assume he is a fine man. I want to highlight this video not to pick on Zachary, but to point out that this behavior is endemic to Christians who place their political affiliations higher than the word of God and scripture.

The claim of this very short video is this: Christians have been using regulations to strangle off abortion providers. This is apparently bad, because it puts out of business smaller providers while larger ones, such as Planned Parenthood, have managed to survive, and are now claiming the lion’s share of the abortion business. Conservatives are normally against regulation but are for it in this instance and so are guilty of inconsistency when they don’t seek outright criminalization of abortion.

I will applaud Zachary and Apologia for defending what I see as a weakness on the part of many Christians and conservatives towards the abortion question. If we are going to call abortion murder and stand by the courage of our convictions, we should punish it as murder. Even though there are varying views on whom and what should be punished with regard to abortion, most all conservatives and Christians would agree that should an opportunity arise to criminalize abortion, they would do so. However, we live in a post-Roe v. Wade world. Measures like regulation are designed to save lives by hindering abortion mills and delaying would-be infanticidal mothers in the process of killing children. Every extra moment we give to the unborn is an extra moment of consideration given to that young life. If a mother has to see an ultrasound of that baby to remind her that it is in fact a baby she is killing, it may prick her conscience, as well as put an extra financial hurdle in her way she may not be able to clear. The implicit idea conveyed in the video that there are no lives saved by imposing regulatory burdens on abortionists and their clients seems a shaky one that I believe requires data to bear it out.

What I really think is happening here is self-professed conservatives such as Zachary are placing their political and philosophical objections to regulation over their biblical quest to save young lives. I think the most egregious example of this tendency would be Tomi Lahren, the young self-professed Christian conservative woman who turned against the pro-life cause and declared that conservatives “win by staying out of social issues,” but it manifests itself in lesser form here and in many other political areas as well. It is painfully obvious when Zachary declares taxation and government control over business “slavery” that he is not operating from a Christian perspective, but a Rothbardian one. Are we not told in Mark 12 to give to Caesar what is Caesar’s, and to give to God what is God’s? Does Romans 13 tell us to pay our taxes and to submit to the governing authorities, as they are ordained by God? This flies directly in the face of Libertarian philosophy. Zachary’s claim that regulation causes the shrinking of the market and enables monopoly, while possibly true, is almost certainly informed by Libertarian dogma and does not place the life of the unborn at the center of his concerns. Who performs these abortions is immaterial to us. What matters is that they stop.

When considering political matters of clear theological prescription such as abortion, it’s important that Christians keep their eyes on the ball.