...and keeps the dialogue hot.
The saga I described on Friday included a new episode over the weekend. Yale University, frustrated that Aliza Shvarts won't recant on the truthfulness of her abortion-as-art senior project, has decided that either she must say the whole thing is a performance art fiction or she can't display the project.
This is a curious demand. If abortion doesn't kill a human being, what could possibly be wrong with Shvart's project? It's a bit crude, I suppose, but with all of the other things that pass as art these days, it seems odd to exclude abortion from the mix. If someone were displaying the tissue that was removed during their liposuction surgery, people would recoil, but I doubt the university would censor it.
And if Yale is censoring this project because abortion kills a human being, and Shvart's art may have included that sort of killing (she claims one point of her project was to be ambiguous about this), then is Yale willing to follow that logic and discourage all Yale students from getting abortions? Why is Yale so concerned about such a small-scale abortion operation as Shvarts's when the Yale Medical Center Family Planning Department teaches doctors to perform abortions and appears to offer abortions as a service?
So, the question remains: Why is Yale censoring the Shvarts art?
Regardless of the answer, I contend that the situation continues to create a good opportunity to begin a dialogue on abortion with common ground. Whether pro-life or pro-choice, don't most people agree that Shvarts's art project is not a good reason for abortion? Once we have agreed that we think abortion shouldn't be used as art, we're ready to discuss why.
See Common Ground Without Compromise for 25 other topics you can use to build common ground in order to discuss abortion effectively.