Wouldn't your position mean that some forms of artificial birth control result in homicide?

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Yes. For example, forms of birth control that result in the death of the conceptus, such as the IUD and the “morning-after” pill (RU-486), would logically entail homicide if the pro-life position is correct. However, not every form of birth control results in the death of the conceptus. For example, the condom and sterilization would not logically entail homicide if the pro-life position is correct, for they merely prevent conception.

This is why the pro-life advocate makes a distinction between contraception and birth control. Contraception literally means “to prevent conception.”

Therefore, all contraception is a form of birth control, since it prevents birth. But not all forms of birth control are contraceptive, since some forms—such as the ones cited above—prevent birth by killing the conceptus after conception. Hence, the pro-life advocate as such finds no problem with contraception as a form of family planning.

Editor's note: According to knowledgeable pharmacologists we have corresponded with, all “birth control pills” have the potential to do more than just prevent conception. [more information]

Author: Francis J. Beckwith, adapted from a series in Christian Research Journal, Spring 1991. Provided with permission by Summit Ministries and the author.

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