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Speaking Tonight on a World After Roe
Speaking across a moral chasm
My maternity leave officially ends on Monday, but I’ve come back a little early to help my colleagues at Braver Angels plan a debate responsive to the possible overturning of Roe.
We want to give attendees the chance to debate abortion itself, but also to answer the question:
How do we live alongside people who advocate for and are complicit in grave moral evil?
Abortion is the issue where I think both sides would claim the urgency of William Lloyd Garrison in his abolitionist newspaper The Liberator:
I am aware that many object to the severity of my language; but is there not cause for severity? I will be as harsh as truth, and as uncompromising as justice. On this subject, I do not wish to think, or to speak, or write, with moderation. No! no! Tell a man whose house is on fire to give a moderate alarm; tell him to moderately rescue his wife from the hands of the ravisher; tell the mother to gradually extricate her babe from the fire into which it has fallen; — but urge me not to use moderation in a cause like the present. I am in earnest — I will not equivocate — I will not excuse — I will not retreat a single inch — AND I WILL BE HEARD. The apathy of the people is enough to make every statue leap from its pedestal, and to hasten the resurrection of the dead.
We’re planning how to structure our debate to help both sides give voice to this urgency, while still doing something more than shouting at each other. We’re finalizing our plans (and I’ll share the registration link when it’s up) but one idea I proposed was starting the debate by having people write their answers to two questions: