There’s an old saying we have in the film industry that says movies are like sausage - if you want to keep on loving it, don’t go looking too deeply into how it’s made or what it’s comprised of. A lot of of disgusting parts of the film sausage used to be hidden away in the deep cracks of the machinery. You had to be working on the production line to know how dirty the process and the people really were sometimes. Since the invention of social media and the accompanying paradigm that truth is relative and ever-shifting depending upon the whims of the day, everyone now knows how twisted the ingredients and the people making the end product really are. Unfortunately, those in Hollywood with the least value to add to life seem to scream the loudest, and they really just can’t seem to shut themselves up. That some people in Hollywood manage to keep a career going despite how much we know about them is a testament to the depths of our apathy as consumers.
But the depravity I’ve seen in my own industry is nothing compared to the depths of sludge I’ve found in my research and production of an abortion-themed documentary film.
When you’re shooting nonfiction, you still have characters that you outline at the start of the process. The only difference is that they are not fictional characters that you’re creating and shaping through a fictional screenplay. Instead of the process of making up characters from scratch, you’re analyzing characters that are real people. The “casting” process for a documentary film is nearly the same, with just a few differences. Instead of looking for people who can play a character that exists only on paper, you’re looking for real characters that have already played a part, and deciding if they can add to the story in a unique way or not, and how well they can tell their part of the tale.
Most characters in a nonfiction film act pretty much as you would expect them to act. For example, in “Inwood Drive”, George Klopfer, the abortionist, acted exactly as you would expect an abortionist to act. In fact, if there was anything about his part of the tale that shocked me (which is hard to do), it was that he essentially confirmed everything I’ve ever suspected about someone like him. Surprisingly, it was not only that he confirmed all of the stereotypes I had around him going into the film, he pretty much blew them out of the water. Whatever I expected of him, the reality of it was much worse.
He’s an abortionist. He’s murdered over 30,000 children. I expect him to be completely twisted in his worldview, his philosophies of life and morality. I expect him to have a tragic childhood experience that mangled his moral compass and set him on a path of anger and misguided revenge. I expect him to be angry. I expect him to be lonely. I expect him to be pretty much everything he is. The one thing about George that really stuck with me was how human he is. I realized that I had only believed in the monster, and not thought about the man. As terrible as his life and deeds have been, he is still a man with a soul and breath in his lungs - and he needs the Lord as much as I do. As much as you do. And, until we each draw our last breath in this life, it is not too late to come to repentance. When I think about George, I weep for the boy who became the monster.
But, my weeping over George turns to blood boiling rage when I think of some of the other characters that revealed themselves in this story, not the least of which is an entire group of individuals who disgustingly call themselves a church. In particular, I’m talking about the church that sat directly across the street from the original abortion clinic in downtown Fort Wayne, Indiana, from 1978 until 2006 - First Presbyterian Church. Why rage, you ask? Well, how would you expect a church to act with an abortion clinic directly across the street from its back doors?
I’ll tell you how. All you have to do is look at how the congregation of Statewood Baptist Church reacted when Klopfer moved his clinic from downtown out to the suburbs and once again right across the street from a church - their church, in July of 2006. Statewood Baptist, once they got over the initial shock of what had just happened, mobilized in prayer. They united with other churches and other denominations from across the city - across the state - in prayer. They didn’t act out in violence. They didn’t kick people off of their back lawn who wanted to unite with them in prayer. They welcomed believers from everywhere to come and pray with them - even putting up a tent to keep them warm and dry. Prayer. Pure and simple. For seven long years, the congregation of Statewood Baptist did exactly what you would expect a church to do. They prayed without ceasing.
But, then there’s First Presbyterian. With an abortionist directly behind them for 28 years, what did their congregation and staff do? Well, of course, they welcomed the prayer warriors and sidewalk counselors and let them park in their lot, right? Hardly. In fact, not only did they kick the pro-life community out of their precious parking lot (downtown real estate is precious, don’t you know), they welcomed the abortionist - George Klopfer - and let him and his patients park in their lot.
But wait, it gets much better.
Did you see the pastors of First Presbyterian Church standing outside with the pro-life sidewalk counselors and prayer warriors? Nope. You saw the pastors of First Presbyterian Church volunteering as escorts for the abortion clinic, shielding women from the sidewalk counselors and actually escorting them into the abortion clinic to murder their unborn children. Stop and try to process that. These are the pastors of a church acting as volunteer escorts for the abortion clinic - marching women right to the door of the abortionist to murder their unborn children. Like the very priests of Baal themselves, showing their true colors as they bring children to the altar of child sacrifice. All the while, watching with glee as the police haul off the pro-life protesters, putting them in jail for the act of trying to save lives.
It should be no surprise to any of us, actually, if we had just studied up on a little publicly available history. Presbyterian Church USA went off the cliff of insanity back in 1970. They were probably popping corks on the champagne and pouring it over the altar on January 22, 1973, when abortion was legalized. And while Satan and his demons danced in the streets, the clergy of First Presbyterian Church followed their god straight to the gates of hell, dragging misguided women and their condemned, innocent children with them.
Yes, I guess it is possible to shock me. I thought it would be somebody predictable, though, like the abortionist or the spinsters from Planned Parenthood. I never expected the shock of my life would come from behind the doors of a church that still flies the cross from the tops of their steeples. Perhaps someone should start a petition to have them take the crosses down. If you’re going to deny Christ, just be out in the open with it. Christ left that building decades ago. I don’t know why they even bother.
I actually can’t wait to hear the screams of outrage from PCUSA and the congregation of First Presbyterian in Fort Wayne when “Inwood Drive” is released. At least it would indicate some form of life within the walls, right? Maybe it would indicate someone with a heartbeat. At least then I might have hope for them. I can’t even imagine what their doctrine really looks like today, but there’s one thing that I do know that reveals everything for what it is. To quote my wife, Amber, from Inwood Drive: “If you can’t get life right, what else can’t you get right?”
Pretty much nothing. That’s what.