Some Thoughts on the Killing of Abortionist George Tiller
Across the nation, everyone's talking about the killing of George Tiller, the infamous abortionist who ran the late-term abortion clinic in Wichita, Kansas. On Sunday May 31, 2009, Tiller was shot to death while serving as an usher at the Sunday morning service at his church. His clinic is one of only three nationwide which provides abortions after the 21st week of pregnancy. He specialized in late term abortions that even most abortionists cannot stomach doing, partly due to the obviously human body parts that must be removed after the abortion.
Certainly my heart goes out to Tiller's family. Regardless of the evil he committed, I’m sure they loved him. I know nothing about his killer or his beliefs, but if he was motivated by revenge, he ignored God's warning, "Do not take revenge . . . Vengeance is Mine; I will repay" (Rom. 12:19).
I don't hate the abortionists I know. I pity them and pray for them. But that doesn't change the ugliness of what they do. President Obama said in response to Tiller's killing, "However profound our differences as Americans over difficult issues such as abortion, they cannot be resolved by heinous acts of violence." But we dare not forget the heinous acts of violence being committed daily in every abortion clinic in the nation.
Many Christians decrying this killing are eagerly distancing themselves even from nonviolent prolife intervention; however, many of the same Christians are doing little or nothing to stop the extremist violent killing of innocent children. Tiller's death is being focused on and condemned by the media; but every day the deaths of countless unborn babies are ignored and justified by the media.
The Chris Fabry Live radio program asked me to come on the show Monday afternoon and comment on Tiller's death. Not an easy task, and I struggled with how to answer, knowing my words would be put under scrutiny. (Download the mp3.)
Here's some further articles to check out:
Denny Hartford, director of the prolife ministry Vital Signs Ministries, wrote a great blog post on Responding to Violence. Denny and Claire Hartford are Christ-centered, compassionate and truth-telling in their approach and are committed to the sanctity of human life, from the unborn to the elderly.
Here’s an article by Douglas Phillips of Vision Forum, asking who we should be mourning for.
Frank Schaeffer, son of Francis Schaeffer who I’ve blogged about twice recently, wrote a horribly misguided article for the Huffington Post, called "How I (and Other "Pro-Life" Leaders) Contributed to Dr. Tiller's Murder." Incredibly, Frank blames his father for being a prolife champion who convinced people to get involved on behalf of unborn children, saying that he and all prolifers bear responsibility for Tiller’s death.
Finally, here's an article from our EPM newsletter fourteen years ago, that brings an important perspective to the question of whether peaceful pro-life ministries should suffer a loss of credibility due to violent acts against abortionists committed by a few. And whether or not Christians should be intimidated into trying to appease public opinion by cowering in the corner and failing to point out that it is, in fact, morally repugnant to kill children.