A Feminist Horror Story

Happy November, dear readers! I know that Halloween was yesterday, but there is something scary still out there that needs to be discussed, and involves the Holocaust, abortion, and the film 180.

Normally I ignore protestors who try to convert people into being pro-life. However, after hearing about 180—which was distributed out by Northrop Mall last Tuesday—I was curious enough to watch it and figure out the logic of the director, Ray Comfort. I didn’t expect to finish the 33-minute film in a huff and with the urge to throw the DVD at the wall.

If you haven’t seen the movie or don’t want to see it, the movie starts out describing the Holocaust and the actions of Adolf Hitler and the Nazi Party. Ray Comfort, an Evangelical Christian, sympathizes for the Jews who perished and reminds viewers on the “Never Again” mentality. After setting it up, he asks people on the street (mostly high school students) how much they know about Hitler. Surprisingly, most of them have little to no idea who he was and laugh off their ignorance. After spewing out a few more facts, Comfort asks the people who do understand the Holocaust if they would shoot Hitler with a gun in 1939, if given the chance. Of course, they say yes. Comfort amends the question: would they shoot his mother decades earlier if given the chance? Again, most of them say yes. Then, he creates a scenario where the interviewee is forced to either bury Jews alive or kill them with a gun—would they do it? Some say yes, some say no, but they all agree that they value a human life. His final question is where the film takes a scary turn: if they value a human life, then do they accept the abortion of a baby in the womb? Most of the people being questioned have a hard time answering this, even more so when he asks them to finish the sentence, “It’s okay to kill a baby in the womb when…” By the end of the film, Comfort has converted a few people from being pro-choice to being pro-life and spreads the word of God (especially the Ten Commandments), even to a Neo-Nazi.

First of all, let me say that this movie has to be one of the most manipulative pieces of modern propaganda I have ever had the misfortune to watch. Secondly, his comparison of the Holocaust to abortion is disgusting and wrong in every way imaginable.

When Comfort interviews everyday people at the start of the film, it’s interesting to note how many people don’t know a lot about Adolf Hitler. Many of these people are high school students in what looks to be a typical high school. Is it just me, or is it strange that they are completely unaware of one of the most notorious dictators in history? World War II and the 1930s/40s are greatly defined by Hitler’s actions, and for students to somehow not know about him is suspicious. My assumption is that Comfort interviewed quite a few more people but decided to leave out interviews where people knew who Hitler was, or the majority of interviews. When he relates the Holocaust to abortion, most of the people he talks to don’t seem to have a solid opinion on the matter, and he interrupts those who do have opinions.

It doesn’t come as a surprise that a few people end up changing their mind about abortion. After taking this into account, it infuriates me that someone could compare the Holocaust to abortions. Of course these people value a human life. Of course if given the chance to stop genocide they would do it. By making it seem like abortion is coldblooded murder, the responders are less likely to say they would be pro-choice. It’s an unfair way of making a point. Genocide is genocide and Hitler was Hitler. Extreme cases should never be compared to something like abortion, especially when I can almost certainly say those who do decide on abortion do not make the decision lightly. Many women choose to have abortions because they have no means of supporting the baby or cannot handle the pregnancy. It is deplorable to compare someone to Hitler and their abortion to the Holocaust simply because many happen every year. In addition, many women don’t even believe that a fetus is the same thing as a baby, yet Comfort constantly uses “baby” when talking about what is inside the womb.

Regardless of your views of abortion, it is disgraceful to compare it to the Holocaust. Anything can be compared to the Nazis’ beliefs, but that doesn’t mean it’s right. Not only does the topic automatically cause people to rethink their statements, but also the tactic is beyond manipulative. As a result, I caution others to watching this film, as it is far from receiving my stamp of approval.

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