Terror in America
By Judie Brown
Merriam-Webster defines the word “terror” as “a state of intense fear,” a “cause of anxiety,” or a “frightening aspect” of something. These are but a few of the definitions.
So during this week when we remember so vividly the terror of September 11, 2001, and its aftermath—a week we also remember and pray for the American families, the victims, and others—I am reminded of the terror America will not acknowledge.
That unmentionable terror comes in many forms.
It comes in the form of the fear and pain imposed on the preborn child who is intentionally killed simply because it is legal to kill her—usually because her mother does not want her—and so she goes to her death suffering only God knows what sort of terror. In fact, we know that the act of abortion itself is a terrorist act, plain and simple, because it is the imposed death on an innocent victim without the benefit of a trial, a jury, or even the simple recognition that she is a human being.
Another terror comes in the form of the post-traumatic stress disorder suffered by mothers who have aborted their babies, only to realize after the fact that what they chose to do was wrong.
Ramah International lists many symptoms of post-abortion PTSD, including but not limited to guilt, anxiety, feelings of numbness, avoidance of children, depression, and thoughts of suicide.
One mother wrote of her feelings about her abortion after completing her healing retreat with Rachel’s Vineyard. Her words speak to the torment she felt after her abortion in a way that only someone who suffered through it could speak. She writes:
Nothing in this world could ever make me feel like I made the right decision. But attending a Rachel’s Vineyard retreat helped me to realize so many things: I am not alone; God forgives me because I have contrition; and most importantly, my child forgives me. My little boy is waiting for the moment when I can hold him in my arms and tell him about all of his siblings, and how much we love him, and how I have missed him.
The third type of terror is the silent suffering and conscious fear experienced by victims of imposed death because of their physical inabilities. Terri Schiavo’s tragic death comes to mind. Terri was starved to death by order of a judge who ruled her life unworthy to be lived.
There is no room in this article to recount all the ghastly acts of terror that the culture refuses to admit occurs in our homeland, but there is one more I have to mention. And that is the patient in a hospice or nursing home whose family naively believes that pain medication/terminal sedation is the answer to their loved one’s apparent suffering. But more often than not, a dose of this sort of palliative care can lead to an untimely death.
The realization that such a tragic “treatment” has caused the death of a loved one is a torment only those who lived it can explain. The family of William Knightly, for example, went through hell, as William was deceptively consigned to hospice care, denied the treatment he needed, and even suffered from an untreated urinary tract infection prior to his death. Mrs. Knightly writes:
“Our loved ones are dying because hospice and palliative care providers are getting away with illegal euthanasia. That is, patients’ lives are being intentionally ended by denial of lifesaving and life-sustaining medical treatment, and instead are being drugged into oblivion. This needs to end.”
Such terror not only needs to end, but it must end. Human beings are not chattel and should never be treated as such. We are not living in a prison camp; we are living in the United States.
We must do everything within our power to bring moral sanity back to the forefront in education, medical practice, politics, and especially in the pulpits.
As Paul’s letter to Peter says:
“No one can hurt you if you are determined to do only what is right; and blessed are you if you have to suffer for being upright. Have no dread of them; have no fear.”