"They Are Human Beings With
an Inalienable Right to Live"
Cardinal Edward Egan of New York City
Statement Reaffirming the Church's Stance against Abortion
August 26, 2008
Like many other citizens of this
nation, I was shocked to learn that the Speaker of the House of
Representatives of the United States of America would make the kind
of statements that were made to Mr. Tom Brokow of NBC-TV
August 24, 2008. What the Speaker had to say about theologians and
their positions regarding abortion was not only misinformed; it was
also, and especially, utterly incredible in this day and age.
We are blessed in the 21st century with crystal-clear photographs
and action films of the living realities within their pregnant
mothers. No one with the slightest measure of integrity or honor
could fail to know what these marvelous beings manifestly, clearly,
and obviously are, as they smile and wave into the world outside the
In simplest terms, they are human beings with an inalienable right
to live, a right that the Speaker of the House of Representatives is
bound to defend at all costs for the most basic of ethical reasons.
They are not parts of their mothers, and what they are depends not
at all upon the opinions of theologians of any faith. Anyone who
dares to defend that they may be legitimately killed because another
human being “chooses” to do so or for any other equally ridiculous
reason should not be providing leadership in a civilized democracy
worthy of the name.
Edward Cardinal Egan
Archbishop of New York
August 26, 2008