About a week ago, my family and i watched the film "Amazing Grace", and tonight i watched it again. I'd heard about it from friends of mine, and after hearing about it enough times i actually went and got it from the library, where it so conveniently happened to be sitting on the shelf during one trip where i was told to "go find a movie for us to watch tonight". I can't believe i hadn't taken the initiative to get it before.
"Amazing Grace" was truly, amazing. There was a preview for the movie before the movie (where all the rest of the previews are) and while waiting for my mom to come we watched the preview and i fell in love with "Amazing Grace" right then and there. I loved it even more after i actually watched the film.
"Amazing Grace" is the story of William Wilberforce, a Member of Parliament for 45 years and a tireless advocate of abolition, better education, the poor and countless other social reforms. The movie mentions 'Wilber's' other causes, but focuses on his goal of the abolition of the slave trade in the British Empire. In fact, the release was planned to coincide with the 200th anniversary of the passing of the Parliamentary Bill banning the slave trade.
My mother was wondering why, given the amazing accomplishments that Wilberforce achieved, we had never heard a bit about him before, but a biography on Wilberforce that i just finished reading gives a good analogy. It's a bit like when there is a dreadful disease, the book said. It consumes the populace, destroying the nation, but then a wonderful cure is invented that so totally wipes out the disease that people no longer remember there was a disease, or even a cure for it.
I was and am very inspired by the story of William Wilberforce. He worked tirelessly and doggedly for the end of slavery, even to the point of ruining his health. never giving up, supported by a slow growing group of like-minded people and in the end was able to rid the Empire of slavery.
Of course, after watching "Amazing Grace", i naturally thought of the parallels between slavery and abortion. Abortion is a more silent issue than slavery in the US was, but in England during Wilberforce's time slavery was a 'silent issue' as well. Slaves had previously been emancipated in England, so most people had no idea what slavery was really like. Slaves were in the West Indies, far across the Atlantic Ocean and far removed from public knowledge. The average Englishman had no concept of the cruilties and the horrors of slavery. They were told that the Africans were far better off as slaves, much like we are told that women are far better off without "unplanned pregnancies".
It gives me hope; if one man in Parliment could bring a "silent issue" to the attention of the government and the public, eventually winning over opposition and ridding the empire of a 'peculiar insitution'... could we be rid of abortion by having at least one or two politicians dedicated to the pro-life cause in our government?
With amazing grace, i think we could.