The Power of a Portrait

I recently came across the above photographs of a ten week old embryo on flickr, taken by an OB/GYN med student in India named Dr. Suparna Sinha, and I was struck by how beautiful they were. The mother had cancer of the womb, and her uterus, including her unborn baby inside, had to be removed. I can only imagine the pain that she must have felt losing this baby, having already been the mother of six children.

I made one of them my profile picture on Facebook, and the other day, one of my classmates from high school asked me why. I thought about it, and explained that I think that photographs of developing babies are one of the most powerful ways for people to realize the humanity of the unborn child.

I have been thinking about that though, and I think I missed the mark a little bit. It’s definitely true that they are powerful testimonies of the humanity of preborn children. But why?

I think photographs are powerful because it shows a real person, an individual, in one moment of time. These are remarkable photographs of what an unborn baby looks like at ten weeks, but it’s more than just an example of a fetus at a certain stage of development. They are also the photographs, the portraits, of a beautiful, unique, unrepeatable individual, who, sadly, did not live very long.

Photography is a medium that forges a unique connection, a relationship, between the observer and the one photographed, precisely it does not show an abstract idea, or a generalized model, but a real, and unique person, that if you had encountered in real life, would have been exactly the same. It is the same with photographs of babies in the womb, with photographs of babies killed in abortions, with the babies shown in the video HeresTheBlood

Those are all powerful because you’re looking at a photograph of a real person, and in looking at them, you forge a relationship with them. The babies photographed after being killed in abortions are not simply examples of one collective, nameless, faceless injustice. They are unique individual persons that were each victims of a distinct injustices committed against them personally.

For myself, the power of the photograph is precisely that it is the reminder that I need that defending the unborn is not simply “a cause”, or an “issue”, because people are not causes or issue, they unique, unrepeatable human beings that I have a relationship with simply because we both share our human dignity, and it is simply because of that, that I have an obligation to defend them.

 

President Obama challenges pro-lifers to join March for Life! (sort of)

 

by John Jalsevac

Fri Jan 11, 2013 15:07 EST

You have to see this. The folks over at Blackstone Films have put together the most powerful ad I’ve ever seen for the March for Life. And they’ve done it with the (unintentional) help of President Barack Obama.

Many pro-lifers have pointed out that Obama’s emotional speech after the Sandy Hook shootings seemed to reflect eerily on the pro-life cause. We at LifeSiteNews noticed this, and put together a video with the best parts of Obama’s speech, pointing out how they provide a compelling description of the importance of the pro-life cause.

But this new video puts Obama’s speech to use in an extremely powerful way, using the president’s own words to challenge pro-lifers around the country to get off their backsides and to GET INVOLVED in the pro-life cause, starting with the March for Life later this month.

As the president said: “If there’s even one step we can take to save a child, then surely we have an obligation to try.

“Are we really prepared to say that we’re powerless in the face of such carnage, that the politics are too hard? Are we prepared to say that such violence visited on our children year after year after year is somehow the price of our freedom?”

No, it’s not.

 

Watch this ad. And then share it.

 

 

19-Year-Old Recovers as Doctors Start to Harvest Her Organs

by Michael Cook | Copenhagen, Dnemark | LifeNews.com | 11/20/12 8:40 PM

The world of organ donation in Denmark is in turmoil. A documentary was aired earlier this month which showed family members reacting in anguish to the news that their 19-year-old daughter was brain dead after a car accident, agreeing to donate her organs and allowing doctors to turn off her respirator. About 1.7 million viewers tuned in to the heart-rending drama.

But Carina Melchior did not die after her respirator was removed. She is now undergoing rehabilitation and may make a full recovery. About 500 people immediately removed their names from Denmark’s organ donor register.

Doctors at Aarhus University Hospital were embarrassed by the incident. “We are overjoyed that the young woman survived and that she is moving on after the accident,” Claus Thomsen, the hospital’s chief medical officer, said. “But we made a mistake underway and made the family believe that their daughter and sister would die.”

The hospital acknowledged that the question of organ donation should not have been raised as there were no unambiguous signs that brain death would occur. New guidelines have been introduced to ensure that relatives will only be approached about organ donation if no more treatment options are available. There was no risk of a false diagnosis of brain death, the hospital insisted.

But in more bad publicity for the hospital, a Danish tabloid profiled a man who had been falsely diagnosed as brain dead in 2002. He recovered quickly.

Aarhus University Hospital is investigating both cases, although it insists that the correct procedures were followed in the earlier case.

Carina’s family is now suing the hospital for damages. Her family’s lawyer claims that she keeps asking whether her doctors were trying to kill her. “Those bandits in white coats gave up too quickly because they wanted an organ donor,” Carina’s father told the Danish newspaper Ekstra Bladet.

http://www.lifenews.com/2012/11/20/19-year-old-recovers-as-doctors-start-to-harvest-her-organs/