By Susan Brinkmann, OCDS
Last Friday night’s episode of NBC’s Law & Order, which was infused with a pro-life message, is angering abortion supporters who claim it wasn’t “balanced.”
According to a report by LifeSiteNews.com, the episode was entitled “Dignity” and began with the murder of a fictional late-term abortionist named Dr. Walter Benning (played by Matthew Boston) and the subsequent trial of his killer.
During the investigation, two detectives were discussing abortion. One said that forcing an 11 year-ld rape victim to give birth was unthinkable. The other responded, “You got it backwards, man! The horrible thing is the rape, not the bringing of a life into the world!”
When two District Attorneys argue about a plea bargain during the episode, one argues that Roe v. Wade conformed to the science of its day, but that it deserved another look.
One of the most surprising issues raised in the episode concerned the connection of abortion with infanticide. During the course of the trial, the defense, desiring to show that the doctor was a murderer, calls a witness to testify how a breathing, born-alive infant was killed by Dr. Benning.
“The boy was crying a little cry, moving his arms and legs,” the witness said. “Dr. Benning cut the umbilical cord; then he took the surgical scissors and inserted it into the base of the baby’s skull.”
“What makes the Law & Order episode so riveting is that virtually every pro-life argument you knew you would never hear on a network program is a part of ‘Dignity,'” writes Dave Andrusko on the National Right to Life Committee’s website.
“More important, it occurred to me as I listened in utter astonishment that each of these observations could have been presented in a way that was artificial, forced, or (as so often is the case with network portraits of pro-lifers) something that you would expect from an idiot. None of that was the case. These were real flesh-and-blood people, not caricatures.”
Abortion supporters see things differently, however, and have responded to the episode with outrage that it would feature an abortionist modeled after Dr. George Tiller in such an unbecoming light.
Charlotte Taft, director of the Abortion Care Network, writes that “NBC cannot hide behind the words” by stating that the story is fictitious. For the media to make a negative story so blatantly ripped off the death of “St. George,” as she dubs Tiller, is to murder him again. “There is no balance here,” she says.
Pro-abortion journalist Kate Harding complained on Salon.com that the episode features only two groups: “Anti-choicers, who believe fetuses’ rights trump women’s, and the pseudo-pro-choicers, who are conveniently persuaded to agree with them by the end of the episode.”
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