Friday, February 4, 2011

Entrapment - an Ethical Problem

Gut feelings - should we trust them? I have had ambivalent feelings about the videos released by Live Action over the past two days and some email conversations with Suzanne of Big Blue Wave about this. As readers of her blog know, Suzanne calls this simply "lying" and that we harm ourselves and our cause when we engage in it. She has commented on the previous post.

I opened my email this morning and got the newsletter from Mercator Net. The editor, Carolyn Moynihan, has written about this very issue and her column is definitely worth reading.

Stung! the Ethics of Entrapment

Moynihan asks why the Planned Parenthood's employee's face was not blurred in the video as it would have been in a police video; the simple act of giving one presumed innocence until proven guilty should apply here too. But the crucial part of Moynihan's article deals with a recent case in England where a homosexual posed as someone wishing therapy and sought the help of a Christian therapist who believes that homosexuals can change if they wish, and he did this to expose her to disciplinary action by those who have the authority to do so. When the shoe is on the other foot, what do we say?

The entire episode leaves me uncomfortable. My most pressing concern is that 40 Days for Life has become involved in this; the thought of Shawn Carney and David Bereit becoming involved in this whole affair, and now people like Father Frank Pavone amongst many others, disturbs me.

As well intentioned as she might be, Lila Rose is young and fearless. She doesn't have the years of experience or maturity to be taking on the giant of Planned Parenthood. And I don't need to hear about David and Goliath; I know the story. My fear is that Lila will bring a whole lot of people with great track records into a messy unethical situation that they should know better than to get involved with.

Yes, we all want the illegal activities of Planned Parenthood exposed; yes, we all want to see funding cut to an organization that teaches youth that sexual activity of all sorts is harmless and fun; and no one wants to keep supporting an organization that drives a wedge between young people and their parents by giving them cover when things go wrong.

But the pro-life movement has too much to lose by getting messed up by the actions of an enthusiastic newcomer whose main activity is setting up stings. Surely, we can get at the truth by methods that are in keeping with our Christian moral code.

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