The process used by the Center for Medical Progress to obtain undercover videos outing Planned Parenthood’s sale of aborted baby parts was not morally wrong, CMP founder David Daleiden said at the Evangelicals for Life conference in Washington.
Daleiden shared his convictions during the opening day of the Jan. 21-22 conference in an interview with Russell Moore, president of the Southern Baptist Convention’s Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission, and Jim Daly, president of Focus on the Family. Co-sponsored by the ERLC and Focus on the Family, Evangelicals for Life is being held as a pre-event to Saturday’s annual March for Life in Washington.
Moore introduced Daleiden as the man who, through the videos he released last year, “pierced the conscience of the nation.” Daleiden received a standing ovation from the crowd gathered at the Hyatt Regency Capitol Hill hotel. For a full report from the conference, click here.
Moore pointed out that many criticize CMP’s ethics by contending that Daleiden had to lie while undercover in order to produce the videos, which is among Planned Parenthood’s allegations in a lawsuit filed Jan. 14.
“Are you kind of making morality relative here by using lying and deception?” Moore asked.
Daleiden responded that Moore was asking a valid question.
“I think that undercover work is fundamentally different from lying,” Daleiden said, “because the purpose of undercover work is to serve the truth and to bring the truth to greater clarity and to communicate the truth more strongly.”
Daleiden noted, “Certainly in normal everyday life we don’t always communicate the truth by a simple one-equals-one mathematical way of speaking. We often use poetry and metaphor and even pretext in order to communicate really important truth in a more clear way. Our Lord did that in the Gospels with the parables; it’s often done throughout the Holy Scriptures; and so I see undercover work in that same sort of vein, as a creative way of communicating and speaking that is in service of the truth.”
Moore and Daly asked Daleiden about his response to critics who contend that the videos are heavily edited, to which Daleiden replied that CMP has been “more transparent than any news agency” in showing what goes into the production of video files that wind up as the final cuts seen by the American public.
Moore, citing the extensive time and effort involved in producing the videos, asked Daleiden what shaped his own personal pro-life view.
“I myself am actually the child of a crisis pregnancy situation,” Daleiden said. “My parents got pregnant with me their junior year of college. They gave birth to me their senior year and got married after graduation. I grew up in a home that was kind of nominally or culturally Catholic … but I always grew up with the sense really strongly that sometimes people get pregnant and have kids in less than totally perfect situations or less than perfectly planned situations, and that ultimately there is nothing wrong with that, and there is nothing shameful about that because ‘now’ is always a good time to welcome a new little person into the world. So that was really formative to me in terms of how we treat people and how we respect people.”
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SOURCE: Baptist Press
Sharayah Colter/Southern Baptist TEXAN