“a mild or indirect word or expression substituted for one considered to be too harsh or blunt when referring to something unpleasant or embarrassing.”
Last week in Cleveland euphemisms abounded when it came to a discussion of the unpleasant topic of abortion. In an article from the Religious News Service, Trevin Wax noted the repeated use of these euphemisms instead of calling abortion what it is: the murder of unborn children.
But whose health? Whose rights? Whose justice? Certainly not the unborn child whose life is ended prematurely.
In addition to these we commonly hear other euphemistic expressions for the savagery of abortion.
“A woman’s right to choose.”
In 1946 the English novelist George Orwell wrote an essay entitled “Politics and the English Language,” that described political speech and writing as “largely the defense of the indefensible.”
“Political language,” insisted Orwell, “has to consist largely of euphemism, question-begging and sheer cloudy vagueness. Politicians turn to strange phrases in order to “name things without calling up mental pictures of them.”
In an era of political correctness euphemisms reign in the place of the revealed righteousness of God. The Bible uses the expression “with child” 26 times to refer to pregnant women. The term fetus is never used.
Luke, the physician, records that Elisabeth, the mother of John the Immerser, conceived a son (1:35). In verse 41 the doctor wrote “the baby leaped in her womb.” The baby! Not the fetus! It is the same Greek word that Luke uses to describe Jesus after he was born (2:12, 16). God views the unborn baby and the newborn baby in the same way. Both are living human beings.
In the midst of his suffering Job cries out, “Or why was I not hidden like a stillborn child, Like infants who never saw light?” (3:16). The unborn child is called an infant!
In describing the greatness of Jehovah’s power and majesty, the Psalmist, David, describes himself as a person, unborn in his mother’s womb.
For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful,I know that full well. My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place. When I was woven together in the depths of the earth, your eyes saw my unformed body. All the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be. (Ps 139:13-16)
Trevin Wax was right when he concluded, “No amount of euphemism can avoid the fact that in “medical waste” bags and freezers of abortion clinics, there are tiny, broken bodies of our fellow humans to be disposed of, all in the name of “reproductive health.”
The blood of 59 million babies slaughtered on the triune altars of immorality, selfishness and greed cry for justice. “How long, O Lord, how long?”
–Ken Weliever, The Preacherman