Lately I’m tired. I’m tired of having to constantly explain reality. You would think in this modern day and age that reality would be fairly well nailed down. However, it seems the opposite is true. Never have we been so unsure of our footing despite our great leaps in knowledge and technology. If I ask anyone do they know what a human being is they look at me puzzled and answer “of course!” If I follow this with claiming that all human beings have human rights, again an affirmative answer is given. And if I state that the law should protect these rights, yet again I am agreed with, although the post-modern relativist will start wondering where the trick question is, despite there not being one.
I’m tired of people disagreeing with the basic scientific fact that following conception an entirely new and unique human being is created. Dehumanising arguments abound over physical development, consciousness, illness and autonomy, but whether we like it or not conception is the scientific beginning of a new human life. A complete and unique human genome is created that will remain with that person until they die. If I am still growing am I somehow less human? If I am asleep or have a brain injury which reduces my mental cognition am I less human? If I require somebody else to feed me, or somebody to make insulin to be injected into me, am I less human? All of these things vary across the human spectrum and can even change during an individual’s life, but we do not try to say that these make somebody non-human.
Yet, why are these arguments applied to a human inside a womb? I’m tired of hearing that an embryo is not fully formed, but would we say this to dehumanise a toddler just because they haven’t reached some arbitrary growth point? Without any scientific evidence we hear the claim that a foetus is not conscious. Yet all of us spend hours every day unconscious when we sleep, does my classification as a human change then? Is it permissible to treat me differently because I am not awake? The case is made to end the life of humans diagnosed with so-called “fatal foetal abnormalities.” But if I am diagnosed with a terminal illness does somebody else have the right to end my life because of this? Is my human status lessened because of my illness? And somehow because the unborn rely on their mother for sustenance, unable to autonomously live, they are less human. But what child can autonomously live without parents or guardians? Indeed many adults rely on the intervention of others to survive. If I require dialysis am I less human?
And if I am human I have human rights. Surely this is the only logical conclusion. Or do we subscribe to a scheme that only some humans have human rights? That at the whim of politicians, authorities or tyrants human rights can be removed from some. We need only review the crimes of history to see where this leads. But if we believe that all human beings have human rights then, as a civilised society, we must expect the law to uphold those rights for everyone. If we are scientifically human beings we morally have human rights which should be legally protected. No exceptions.
So in the words of John Henry Newman, I wanted heart to speak to heart. If people are willing to deny scientific, moral and legal truths, to circumvent logic and reason, to be willingly or ignorantly misled, another route is needed. The way of the heart; that deep intuition buried under the cerebral chatter. So my friends and I decided to compose a song and compile a video to explain all of the above without argument, without debate, without reams of words. Just music, song and images. Because we are all human from the moment we are conceived, we all have inherent human rights and we all deserve the chance to live.
To listen to and view the song and video Together Beat Our Hearts by The Mustard Seeds please click the following link:
Or simply search “Together Beat Our Hearts” on YouTube.