Saturday, 22 March 2008

Wilberforce would have campaigned against abortion, says relative

William Wilberforce would have abortion at the top of his list to fight against if he was alive today, the slavery abolitionist's great great grandson has said.

Catholic priest Father Gerard Wilberforce said the status of the foetus and the status of African slaves two centuries ago have "great similarities".

His comments come in an article published on Good Friday by the Passion For Life website.

In it he says: "I am often asked what would be the campaigns Wilberforce would be fighting if he were alive in 21st century Britain. I believe that there would be a number of different issues - among them human traffiking and the scourge of drugs. But almost certainly at the top of the list, would be the issue of abortion.

"Slaves were considered a commodity to do with whatever the vested interests of the day decided. Today, in our desire to play God in our embryology experimentation, with all its’ unfulfilled promises of miracle cures, and our decision to abort unwanted children, we are no better that those slave traders who put their interests and world view higher than they placed the sanctity and value of human life."

Apart from calling for amendments to the HFE Bill to tighten the law on abortion, which this blog has serious concerns about, the article is excellent.

I, and many people involved in the pro-life movement, have consistently said that if Wilberforce were alive today he would be leading the fight against the killing of innocent human life in the womb. How fantastic it is to have a direct descendant of the man himself say this.

A few years ago, SPUC Evangelicals published a very successfully circulated leaflet entitled Who will be today’s Wilberforce for unborn children?

Fr Gerard is a Catholic priest currently based in Devon. I had the pleasure of meeting and interviewing him after a lecture by Archbishop Michael Fitzgerald last year as part of Hull's commemoration of 2ooth anniversary of the abolition of the slave trade.

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