Common charity prompts the belief that such women cannot know the awful enormity of the crime they commit. It is to be hoped, at least, that they may have that shield of ignorance to cover themselves with in the last day; but in order to convince such that they cannot hide behind any silly notion that the killing of the fœtus in the womb is a whit different from killing the child in the cradle, it is only necessary to quote Beck's Medical Jurisprudence.
"The absurdity of the principle upon which these distinctions are founded is of easy demonstration. The fcetus, previous to the time of quickening, must be either dead or alive. Now that it is not the former is most evident from neither putrefaction nor decomposition taking place, which would be the consequence of an extinction of the vital principle. The embryo, therefore, before the crisis, must be in a state different from that of death, and that can be no other than a state of life."
This, as well as an almost similar definition in Dr, Taylor's work on medical jurisprudence, sufficiently, I think, establishes the status of the unborn infant from a legal standpoint, as well as the resultant fact that the destruction of that pre-natal life constitutes, clearly and unequivocally, murder, in some one of its juridical degrees. But, "independent of all laws, human authorities or decisions," as Dr. Eddy well says, "the true Christian theory is that the thought of man, in the mind of God, embraces the entire period of his earthly relations, between the extreme limits of embryotic existence and old age, and whosoever, with sacriligious hand, does violence to this chain of sacred relations is a murderer."
These statements dispose, very effectually, of the fatuous pretence put forward by some, in defence of the abominable practice, that the unborn child is not a separate and independent being; and, with the equally strong words of Bishop Coxe, of New York, ringing in the reader's ears, I think it well to leave this subject for the present.