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Divided We Fall

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September 2019

WANTED: Villain. Must be evil, ruthless, heartless, sinister, cunning, underhanded. Ability to destroy everything in sight and take pleasure in others’ pain preferred. No experience needed. If writers advertised, that’s likely what they’d say. Every good story needs a bad guy or girl. Actually, it could be neither—a tornado or earthquake will work just fine. Whoever or whatever, villains are vital. They provide needed conflict so that in the end, good can triumph over evil.

Throwing a villain into the mix is just not the stuff of storytellers. It’s a persuasive technique used in real life. Ask trial lawyers. They understand that to get jurors on their side, vilifying the other side can really help. Why? It allows the lawyers to wrap their clients in the mantle of a downtrodden victim. And it gives jurors reason to believe that by ruling in their favor, they are righting a wrong and doing justice.

Who understands this principle best of all? Politicians, of course. They’re famous for making their opponents look downright evil. Negative ads, the more vicious the better, have become the staple of American politics. And when politicians can’t find a way to vilify an opponent, they create a villain and associate their opponents with it.

For about the last ten years, some politicians have been working on an old favorite—racism. We know for a sad fact that racism has been a part of our country’s history. Slavery was present at its founding, and it grew into a mighty institution. We had become so divided over slavery that by 1861, we went to war against ourselves. That war cost 625,000 American lives, with many others wounded. We came thisclose to destroying our county. But even afterwards, the vestiges of racism remained. It merely took a different form: segregation in education, public accommodations, voting, and employment. It kept us divided. One hundred years after the Civil War, our nation had once again become a powder keg. In the 1960s, cities were literally in flames all across the country.

But those same ’60s also marked a change for the good. With great struggle, our country began to pass legislation that would help bring us together. The Civil Rights Act of 1964 was landmark legislation, followed by other laws having a single purpose: to show us that we could prosper if we gave each other an equal opportunity. By and large, those laws have worked. Our workplaces and neighborhoods are increasingly diverse. People are treating each other as equals. All over the country, true friendships among peoples of all different races have taken root and blossomed. Opportunities do exist for advancement in all types of endeavors. In government, our leaders are people of all races, from the lowest to the highest posts. Nothing is perfect nor will ever be, but in fact we have made tremendous strides over the last 50+ years in resolving the racial tension. It’s something for which we should be rightly proud. It has united us in ways not previously known in our history.

Yet to listen to many Democratic politicians these days, racism is the biggest problem this country faces. The media has fueled that message. And as we march towards election 2020, it’s sure to grow louder and louder. But ask this question: in your experience, does it seem true? And if not, why are we hearing it? It creates a villain useful in dirtying up the other side, and so in garnering votes. But this manufactured villain hides, likely purposely so, the real villain they so strongly support. And this villain will destroy us.

The real villain is legal abortion. It’s destroying the black community right now. Estimates are that over 260 black babies are killed by legal abortion every single day, mostly by Planned Parenthood. Want something more frightening? Planned Parenthood kills more black people in two weeks than the Ku Klux Klan killed in a century. If black lives truly matter, why does Planned Parenthood kill more black people in a day than police do in a year? In New York City, there are more black babies aborted than are born alive. Black females make up about 13% of our population but have 36% of all abortions. At that rate, are they being targeted? They’re certainly being preyed on.

If we understand racism, we’ll realize that abortion is its ultimate form. Racism is the incorrect belief, put to action, that a person of one race is superior to a person of another. Some have expanded that definition to include cultural racism. Whatever, the essence of racism is the belief than an oppressed person lacks the same dignity, and so the same rights, as the oppressor. That’s the essence of legal abortion. It is the erroneous belief, put to action, that the already born are superior to the waiting-to-be-born. Legal abortion holds that the unborn lack the same dignity, and so the same right to life, as the born. It’s more than that they can’t eat at the same restaurant, or sit on the same bus seat, or even use the same toilet as a born person. It’s that they can’t even live. Is there anything more racist than that?

This racism is eating at our hearts and tearing us apart. Consider comments about efforts to end abortion. “White women should be encouraged to abort their children.” Another person says that abortion is needed self-care because of the effects of “white supremacy.” Recently actress Anne Hathaway got into the act, accusing pro-life white men and white women of hating black women. She’s angry that Alabama’s governor and a state rep, both women, supported pro-life legislation. Then there’s the white female professor who says that white Republican men deserve “miserable deaths” while feminists “castrate their corpses and feed them to swine.” She teaches at a Catholic university. How’s that for division—just for trying to save lives.

We need to realize before it’s too late that that allowing an evil to exist just allows more evil to exist. It’s time to unite in battle against what is destroying us as a people. We don’t need to invent villains. The real villain is bad enough. It’s out to kill. And kill.


Paul V. Esposito is a Catholic lawyer who writes on a variety of pro-life topics. He and his wife Kathy live in Elmhurst, Illinois and have six children.

© Paul V. Esposito 2019. Culture of Life. Permission to copy and distribute for pro-life purposes is granted. Visit us at and on Facebook.

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