"I Feel Super Great About Having an Abortion" — The Culture of Death Goes Viral
- Thursday, May 08, 2014
Emily Letts is a 25-year-old abortion counselor at the Cherry Hill Women’s Center in New Jersey whose video has gone viral. These days, videos go viral on a daily basis, and most are soon forgotten. But not this one. Emily Letts decided to make a video about her own abortion, and the result is one of the most disturbing video messages ever presented to public view.
“I feel super good about having an abortion,” Letts told Philadelphia Magazine. “Women and men have been thirsting for something like this. You don’t have to feel guilty.”
Her video follows her through her first-trimester abortion, undertaken at the clinic where she counsels other women. About a year after she began working at the women’s center, she found herself pregnant. As she told her story in Cosmopolitan, “Once I caught my breath, I knew immediately I was going to have an abortion. I knew I wasn’t ready to take care of a child.”
She was, however, ready to produce a video about her own abortion. “I searched the Internet, and I couldn’t find a video of an actual surgical procedure in the clinic that focused on the woman’s experience,” she wrote. “We talk about abortion so much and yet no one really knows what it actually looks like. A first trimester abortion takes three to five minutes.”
She chose a surgical abortion, rather than an abortion by pill, just in order to be able to tell the story. “I could have taken the pill, but I wanted to do the one that women were most afraid of. I wanted to show it wasn’t scary — and that there is such a thing as a positive abortion story,” she recounted. “It’s my story.”
So Emily Letts set out to make a video of her own abortion in order to create “a positive abortion story” that would show the world that women seeking an abortion should feel no guilt. Over and over again, she suggests that she feels absolutely no guilt about terminating the life within her.
And make no mistake — guilt is her major focus. In her words: “I know there are women who feel great remorse. I have seen the tears. Grieving is an important part of a woman’s process, but what I really wanted to address in my video is guilt.”
Actually, what she wants to address is her argument that the guilt women feel in having an abortion is simply imposed upon them by society. “Our society breeds this guilt. We inhale it from all directions,” she asserted. “I didn’t feel bad,” she insists. Her purpose in her video is to eradicate the link between abortion and guilt. “I am thankful that I can share my story and inspire other women to stop the guilt.”
She is unlikely to be successful in that aim, and her article in Cosmopolitan about the video makes that point. “Even women who come to the clinic completely solid in their decision to have an abortion say they feel guilty for not feeling guilty,” she acknowledged. “Even though they know 110 percent that this is the best decision for them, they pressure themselves to feel bad about it.”
Our post-Christian society has been working hard for well over a century to bury guilt in the cultural backyard and deny that guilt can be morally significant. In the wake of Sigmund Freud and the therapeutic revolution, the modern secular worldview demands that guilt be understood as the lingering residue of the Christian conscience, an experience merely forced upon us by a society that imposes oppressive moral judgments. It is to be overcome and denied, never heard.
But the Christian worldview affirms that guilt is inescapably moral, and that our experience of guilt comes from the fact that we are made in God’s image as irreducibly moral creatures. We cannot not know of our guilt, which exists as God’s gift to drive us to the knowledge that we are sinners in need of a Savior.
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