LOPEZ: You contend that for the women you have worked with, “the journey to that abortion clinic did not start on the morning of the abortion or even the moment of conception. It started at a distant point in her history where a crisis moment was encountered, and the outcome of that particular crisis has led finally to the abortion.”
LASTMAN: With women who have experienced early childhood suffering, abortion seems to be entertained more frequently, especially where there is a stunted emotionality. Abortion to this person has been a continuation of that earlier suffering but not seen as such. Abortion at times is a “getting even with him or them.” It is not about the child she is carrying and at times she is not even recognizing what she is doing. The realization of what has happened usually takes the person to a counselor and, when counseled, a peace restored — not by denying the abortion(s) but integrating them into her history as part of who she is. Indeed, a reconciliation of her history.
LOPEZ: What do you mean when you say that “Abortion creates dissonance in the innermost being”?
LASTMAN: “Lord, you have created us for yourself and our hearts are restless till they rest in you” (St. Augustine, The Confessions). There is a restlessness, because the Spirit knows the “natural Law” written on our hearts tells us when we have done something contrary to our design. There is a restlessness and loss of peace until reconciliation with our history.
LOPEZ: You refer to abortion as the greatest form of idolatry. Can a case be made that with its legal acceptance for so long now, we have to tackle other idols first in order to see our way through to confront this one and to eradicate it?
LASTMAN: Perhaps a better word might have been self-worship. We live in a society where, unlike Jesus, who said “I give my body for you,” we say I will not give my body for you. To give your body for 40 weeks to a child who you hand over to a family who can raise him or her is to give your body for him or her. Too often, a culture of “me-ism” forbids this.
LOPEZ: You insist that abortion is not a choice but enslavement? What if the abortion was really a choice?
LASTMAN: Abortion is always situation specific and even if the choice is made because of prevailing circumstances, in time and more specifically in the afternoon and evening of life, the situation which demanded an abortion has passed but the memory of the abortion remains. An 85-year-old, afraid to die because her daughter would hate her and God would hate her — and the fact that she has remembered for so many years and even gendered her conception and named her — speaks to me that what is written in a woman’s psyche, body, and spirit will not permit her to forget or dismiss. Enslavement is the response to doing something that she is not designed to do yet does it because of fears and anxiety.