The Family Doctor Speaks: The Truth about Life - Part 2 (Transcript)

Dr. James Dobson: Well, hello everyone. I'm James Dobson and you're listening to Family Talk, a listener supported ministry. In fact, thank you so much for being part of that support for James Dobson Family Institute.

Roger Marsh: The following program is intended for mature audiences. Listener discretion is advised. Hello, I'm Roger Marsh. Today we're sharing the second part of a classic conversation that Dr. Dobson had with Dr. Robert Jackson Jr. and his wife Carlotta Jackson. Dr. Jackson is a pro-life family doctor in South Carolina. He's the author of the book, The Family Doctor Speaks: The Truth about Life. He's also the host of the podcast More than Medicine. He's dedicated much of his life to protecting the preborn in the womb. And his wife Carlotta Jackson is also a writer as well as a speaker, and she homeschooled their... Are you ready for this? Nine children, all the way through high school.

Today here on Family Talk, Dr. Dobson will be talking with the Jacksons about the importance of pregnancy resource centers for women who are in crisis pregnancies. They'll also discuss the vile acceptance of euthanasia in culture, especially as it pertains to the disabled and terminally ill. Here now is the conclusion of this interview, originally aired in January of 2018, right here on today's edition of Family Talk.

Dr. James Dobson: Dr. Jackson, I'm going to start with you. As I said, you have written this wonderful book about life and about why you're passionate about it. And yeah, you're really doing everything you can to help other people know that that baby being carried in the mother's womb is a human being and has to be treated as such. And our passions should be to protect that youngster. And I grieve over what we've done as a country, killing 60 million. There's never been any Holocaust like that in history. Now, we started a conversation we didn't finish last time, where I ask you about the hard cases, rape, incest, and the life of the mother. And you take a pretty strong position there, as do I. Explain why.

Dr. Robert Jackson: The reason I take such a strong stand, Dr. Dobson, is because fundamentally we have to understand that the child in the mother's womb is a child created in the image of God, whose life needs to be preserved and protected. And it's our responsibility as God fearing Christian folks to be an advocate for the unborn child. And even the difficult situations do not change that perspective. People always look at me and say, "Yeah doctor, I hear what you're saying, but what about rape? What about incest?" And my answer to them is those situations do not change the status of the unborn child. The child is still an infant created in the image of God and special in the economy of God. Now listen, it's a twisted logic that would kill the unborn child for the misdeed of one of the parents. In the case of rape or incest, why would we kill the unborn child for the misdeed of one of the parents?

More than that, the research done by folks like Reardon and Burke in his book, Victims and Victors, a book that I would encourage people to read, tells us that only 25% of women who have been victims of rape and incest seek an abortion. Now, why is that? It's because that women who have been victims of rape and incest do not sincerely desire an abortion as a solution to that social dilemma. Women who have been victims of rape and incest believe that if they have that child, that they can be a victor over that violence that has been perpetrated against them.

Dr. James Dobson: Let me tell you my story, which recounts how I came to be even more convinced about what you're saying. I went to Washington DC for the remembrance of those babies that have been aborted since 1973. I was in a hotel and I was coming out and there were, as I recall, five young women there. And I stopped and got acquainted with them and they quickly told me that they were part of an organization made up of women who were the products of rape. Every one of those women had resulted from the rape of their mother. When we're talking about life, what about the life of that unborn child?

Dr. Robert Jackson: Unborn child. That's right.

Dr. James Dobson: And here these women are. And when you ask members of Congress who are pro-life or anybody else who's pro-life, what's your position on abortion? They'll say, "Well, I believe in life except for rape, incest, and the life of the mother."

Dr. Robert Jackson: That's right. That's right. That's right.

Dr. James Dobson: Now the life of the mother is a third category and I have different views on that.

Dr. Robert Jackson: Yeah.

Dr. James Dobson: If it was my wife and I really did have to choose.

Dr. Robert Jackson: Yes sir.

Dr. James Dobson Between the two I would take Shirley.

Dr. Robert Jackson: Yes sir.

Dr. James Dobson: And I think the Lord would exonerate me for that.

Dr. Robert Jackson: Yes sir. Yes sir.

Dr. James Dobson: I don't know how you feel about that, having nine children of your own. But I really feel strongly that we have to remember that while you're saying I'm opposed to abortion for every reason other than rape and incest. And those young women who came here and talked about their situation really convinced me there's another life here that we need to think about.

Dr. Robert Jackson: Yes. That's right. Well, here's the thing. The world on the outside is looking in askance at the church, is always looking for opportunity to be critical of us because of our hypocrisy and our double standards. And when we say that we are opposed to abortion except for rape and incest, what we're saying is that the life of the unborn child is sacred except for these difficult circumstances. Well, either the child in the womb is created in the image of God and sacred in the economy of God or either he's not.

Dr. James Dobson: Yeah.

Dr. Robert Jackson: Those circumstances don't change the status of the unborn child. He's still created in the image of God. He's still sacred in the economy of God. Those difficult circumstances do not change the status of the unborn child.

Dr. James Dobson But it does make it harder for us to defend the mother who was raped.

Dr. Robert Jackson: That's right.

Dr. James Dobson: And now has to carry a memory of that tragic circumstance.

Dr. Robert Jackson: Sure. Well, it just calls on us as the church to be more compassionate.

Dr. James Dobson: Exactly.

Dr. Robert Jackson: More loving, more concerned, and to come alongside them and be their support. We can't abandon them and we can't just point a bony critical finger at them and say, "You should not get an abortion," without coming alongside them and being their support.

Dr. James Dobson: And that's true for all women who have had abortions. They carry a lot of guilt.

Dr. Robert Jackson: That's true. They do.

Dr. James Dobson: They struggle with what they did. They killed, in some cases, the only baby they would ever have.

Dr. Robert Jackson: That's right.

Dr. James Dobson: We have to be compassionate for the women who've been through that.

Dr. Robert Jackson: That's right.

Carlotta Jackson: So many CPCs now have post-abortion counseling. Ours does in our area and that's powerful for those women.

Dr. Robert Jackson: That's right. That's what compelled me, Dr. Dobson, so long ago to start a crisis pregnancy center in our area. I was involved in a pastor's protest against abortion in the early 1980s, about 1985. And the whole time I was organizing that protest, the spirit of God was saying to me, "Robert, you cannot just protest abortion. You have to provide meaningful, viable options to abortion."

Dr. James Dobson: Yes.

Dr. Robert Jackson: And about that time, I read a book by Jerry Falwell entitled, If I Should Die Before I Wake. And in that book, he talked about the whole network of crisis pregnancy centers and maternity homes that Liberty had created all across the United States. And to be honest, I didn't know what a crisis pregnancy center was. And I finished reading the book, I laid it down, I looked at my wife and I said, "Carlotta, I think God is leading me to start a crisis pregnancy center."

Carlotta Jackson: And I asked, "What's a crisis pregnancy center?"

Dr. Robert Jackson: And I said, "Darling, I don't really know." But we started and we began to recruit people to help. And that's when I met my Wesleyan pastor friend, Gene Burgess, who had really already started a 501(c)(3) and he had a board of directors and he'd raised a little bit of money. And the next thing you knew, we were on our way to starting a crisis pregnancy center in our area. And God has used me to help start three others in the upstate of South Carolina. And now I'm involved with counselor training for three different CPCs in our area and I do fundraising banquets for crisis pregnancy centers all over the Southeast.

Dr. James Dobson: And you are a godly man and that's why I'm glad you're here. Carlotta, we've kind of ignored you to this point.

Carlotta Jackson: That's okay. I'm okay.

Dr. James Dobson: But I want to go back to the last program because we were talking about you, and you were talking about your own experience. Now you, as I said, are the mother of nine children.

Carlotta Jackson: Yes sir.

Dr. James Dobson: And two of them are disabled.

Carlotta Jackson: Yes.

Dr. James Dobson: One of them's down syndrome and you'll have to describe the condition of the other one.

Carlotta Jackson: Right. I was telling you that John Richard was born, he's our sixth child, and we did not know he had a problem either, but his problem slowly evolved. And we became slowly aware of his issues and God slowly prepared me. And he had brain damage. So John Richard is like a four or five year old and he's now 23 and such a delight. And then-

Dr. James Dobson: Tell us the name of the syndrome that he has.

Carlotta Jackson: No one knows. We had him tested genetically 23 years ago, but at that time, no one identified a syndrome and we have not had him genetically tested since. I know that they have developed new syndromes and they've learned a lot.

Dr. James Dobson: It doesn't change a thing, does it?

Carlotta Jackson: And well we've decided, what difference does it make? It's not going to change, even if we knew what his problem was, if they had named a syndrome now. But then I was telling you that we had Thomas and immediately I knew that, "Okay, I think God just gave me a downs child." And Robert and everyone left the delivery room. It was just me, Dr. Dobson, in that delivery room.

Dr. James Dobson: They left you alone?

Carlotta Jackson: Struggling with the Lord about having a second special needs child. And I knew what was coming. I knew the work. I knew the therapies. I knew that he was probably going to have some sort of medical issues. And so I just struggled a little bit there.

Dr. James Dobson: Right.

Carlotta Jackson: And I didn't ask God, "Why me?"

Dr. James Dobson: Goodness.

Carlotta Jackson: I just really asked him, "Okay, God, what are you up to?" And so, but it took a little while for me to deal with God and He to deal with me.

Dr. James Dobson: Did you grieve there in the hospital?

Carlotta Jackson: All by myself. But all the verses that I-

Dr. James Dobson: Why did they leave you alone?

Carlotta Jackson: They were checking on Thomas. They knew that Thomas was not well and he had had the cord tied around his neck twice and he had a poor Apgar score. So Robert had left to go and check on Thomas and I just found myself all alone. But I wasn't alone, Dr. Dobson, God was with me.

Dr. James Dobson: Yeah.

Carlotta Jackson: And he revealed himself to me in that delivery room. And all the verses that I had memorized down through the years came to me. And the verse that is my, what I call my takeaway verse from that experience, was I realized how faithless I had been. But He gave me a verse that says, "If I am faithless, he is faithful because he cannot deny himself." And at my weakest moment, when I was so faithless, He still was faithful to me. And He came to meet me that day and he took care of me and He brought me out of that pit.

Dr. James Dobson: Was that your ninth child?

Carlotta Jackson: That was our last child and our ninth child.

Dr. James Dobson: And so, you had eight others to take care of and here comes the little youngster who's going to take the measure of you.

Carlotta Jackson: Yes sir. That's right. Our oldest was 16 and here was Thomas and our other special needs child was seven. And we were still going to therapies for him. And so I ended up having Thomas, and so it was a very tricky time. But you know, the Lord was good and my children stepped in. The church-

Dr. James Dobson: How'd they feel about having a downs youngster?

Carlotta Jackson: They thought it was fun. I don't think they really understood the implications, the long term implications. But I will also tell you, Dr. Dobson, the church stepped in. My friends, my Christian friends. I didn't cook a meal for months. They all brought food and they helped iron my clothes and wash our clothes and take care of my other children while we were in the hospital. So the church stepped in for us. And I don't know how people do this without the church and Christian friends.

Dr. James Dobson: God bless you.

Carlotta Jackson: But he has enabled us-

Dr. James Dobson: I just, my heart goes out to you.

Carlotta Jackson: Well, God has abled us-

Dr. James Dobson: And your attitude toward it is exemplary.

Carlotta Jackson: Well, not at first, but certainly the Lord did a work in my heart and he certainly taught me what it meant to be a servant and to love Him.

Dr. James Dobson: Did you ever say, "Lord, why did you send this youngster to me?"

Carlotta Jackson: I didn't necessarily ask why, but I did ask him, "Lord, what are you up to? What lessons do you want to teach me? Lord, nine children and I've still got a lot to learn, huh God?" And so, He did teach me that Thomas's life is worth living.

Dr. James Dobson: You were 44 years old.

Carlotta Jackson: I was.

Dr. James Dobson: And of course, having a physician as a husband, you knew the risk that you were taking.

Carlotta Jackson: Yes. Yes I did. But we felt like the Lord was calling us to have a large family so we just continued to have babies. And though the road has been curvy and the road has been rough, thankfully we've had your books. But the Lord has been good and gracious and I wouldn't trade it for anything. I would not trade having a large family for anything in all of this world.

Dr. James Dobson: Let me tell you something nobody knows. My first book was not The New Dare to Discipline. That was my first book.

Carlotta Jackson: We were discussing that today. We were wondering.

Dr. James Dobson: The New Dare to Discipline was written in 1970.

Carlotta Jackson: Okay.

Dr. James Dobson: And then revised later.

Carlotta Jackson: Okay.

Dr. James Dobson: And I have the original manuscript on the wall here if you want to see it.

Carlotta Jackson...: How about that? Yes.

Dr. James Dobson...: But there was another book. I was a co-author and co-editor of a book done when I was at Children's Hospital in Los Angeles called, and it would not be titled this today, The Mentally Retarded Child and His Family.

Carlotta Jackson: Oh wow.

Dr. James Dobson: It was a big book.

Carlotta Jackson: Wow.

Dr. James Dobson: And so, my very first attempt at writing a book at least was on the subject of mental retardation then.

Carlotta Jackson: Oh wow.

Dr. James Dobson: It's mentally handicapped now or disabled or other things. So I have lived some of what you have experienced and have written about it.

Carlotta Jackson: Well, some people would call these boys the hard cases, but their lives have been worth living. And you can ask anybody in their circle and their brothers and their sisters.

Dr. James Dobson: Hey, listen.

Carlotta Jackson: They love them.

Dr. James Dobson: You ask anyone who has carried a down syndrome to term and then given birth to that child say it has been a wonderful experience.

Carlotta Jackson: That's right.

Dr. James Dobson: Those kids are precious.

Carlotta Jackson: Delightful. They are delightful.

Dr. James Dobson: How did you feel when in Iceland, they decided they were going to kill all down syndrome?

Carlotta Jackson: Dr. Dobson, I have been following that and it just makes me sick to my stomach. It's just disgusting.

Dr. Robert Jackson: In the United States, down syndrome children that are diagnosed before birth, the stats are anywhere from 67 to 90% of downs children diagnosed before birth are aborted in America.

Dr. James Dobson: How do we explain that before the Lord?

Carlotta Jackson: That's right.

Dr. James Dobson: Yeah.

Dr. Robert Jackson: In the Scandinavian countries, the percentage is greater than 90% of downs children diagnosed before birth are aborted.

Dr. James Dobson: Did you write about that in your book?

Dr. Robert Jackson: Yes sir, we have that in there. And it just breaks my heart, because if you'll notice, there's a chapter in there that is entitled, "Every Family Should Have One." And that comes from a remark made by my daughter, Rebecca. When she was 16, she was playing with my son Thomas, my downs boy, on the couch. And she was tickling him and making him laugh because he has a very infectious laugh. And she just popped up over the couch and she looked at me and Carlotta and she said, "You know, every family should have a downs baby."

Dr. James Dobson: Oh my.

Dr. Robert Jack...: Well, we looked at each other in amazement, wondering how in the world she could say that. And then we nodded to each other and said, "You know, she's right. Every family should have a downs baby."

Carlotta Jackson: That's right.

Dr. Robert Jackson: And you know why? Because of the lessons in life that downs children teach us. And because of the joy in life that they bring us. And more than that, Dr. Dobson, I think every church should have a sprinkling of downs children and handicapped children spread throughout every congregation.

Dr. James Dobson: But they don't.

Dr. Robert Jackson: Because they don't allow them to live.

Dr. James Dobson: Yeah.

Dr. Robert Jackson: We abort handicapped children before they're born. And they are the professors, they are the teachers that God gives to every family, every congregation, to teach us how to be more like Jesus. Now listen, why do we have so much angst in our hearts when we know that a handicapped child is going to be born into our families? I'll tell you why. Because we know that when our children, our normal children reach 18 to 20, they're going to fly away. They're going to sprout wings and they're going to fly away. But when we have a handicapped child born into our family, we know in our heart of hearts that we're going to be a servant to that child forever. We're going to help them button their shirts and put on their shoes. We're going to be taking them to doctors and therapists forever. And we have that sinking feeling in the pit of our stomach when we know that we're going to give birth to a handicapped child, because we know that we're going to be a servant to that child forever.

Dr. James Dobson: It's one of the most selfless things you can do.

Dr. Robert Jackson: To give birth.

Dr. James Dobson: Yeah.

Dr. Robert Jackson: And nurture a handicapped child. And most of us don't want to be that much like Jesus. We're not willing to pay that kind of price to be that much like Jesus.

Dr. James Dobson: Well, the two of you have been like Jesus to us here. I just thank you for the things that you've said. It'll make a lot of people angry.

Dr. Robert Jackson: The truth hurts, Dr. Dobson.

Dr. James Dobson: It does.

Dr. Robert Jackson: That's why the title of my book is The Truth about Life.

Dr. James Dobson: And give it to me in one sentence. What is the truth about life?

Dr. Robert Jackson: The truth about life is that life comes from God and that all life deserves to be nurtured and protected, from the cradle to the grave. And it's our responsibility as God fearing, right thinking Christian folks to protect all of life.

Dr. James Dobson: When Jesus walked the dusty streets of Jerusalem, what do you think he would've said about such a youngster, such a disabled child in the crowd who came up to him? Would he have pushed him away?

Dr. Robert Jackson: He would've said, "Suffer the little children to come unto me, for of such is the kingdom of God."

Dr. James Dobson: Dr. Jackson, who's reading your book? And who do you wish would be reading your book?

Dr. Robert Jackson: Well, it's interesting that you ask that. I've noticed that the majority of my readers are people 50 years old and older. My generation. My concern is that the younger generation is not adequately educated about pro-life issues. The millennials and Gen X. And my prayer is that my generation will take this book and purchase it for their children and their grandchildren. And that they will begin to share the truth about life with the succeeding generations, because who's going to be an advocate for life, Dr. Dobson, when you and I are gone? Who's going to man the CPCs in the next generation, when your generation and mine are gone? Who's going to write the Congressman and who's going to craft the legislation, the pro-life legislation in the next generation when we're gone?

And so, my prayer is that the folks that are reading my book will purchase this book and share it with their children and their grandchildren. And that they will begin to teach their children and grandchildren the truth about life and the principles of life and pro-life principles. I'm concerned that the next generation is not going to know the things that are so important, the things that you and I value.

Carlotta Jackson: Rumor has it that this generation, the millennials are a more pro-life generation. Isn't that true? But are they educated on the hard cases like rape and incest? Do they really understand why they are pro-life? That's my concern.

Dr. Robert Jackson: I'm just hopeful and prayerful that the folks in our generation will take pains to teach and educate the succeeding generation.

Dr. James Dobson: Well, it's quite certain that you've done your part in helping to get that information out there, both in your life and in the way you handle your practice. And in with this book that you've now published called The Family Doctor Speaks: The Truth about Life. Robert Jackson Jr. MD. This is available in Christian bookstores, Amazon, elsewhere you can find it.

Dr. Robert Jackson: Yes sir.

Carlotta Jackson: We have a website called Now we've been trying to do a little more speaking and we have a daughter that sings. We have children who speak and we're trying to do some more writing. So we have-

Dr. James Dobson: And they can find out about all of that from the website.

Carlotta Jackson: Yes sir,

Dr. James Dobson: Well, I hope you get a lot of mail from people who heard this program and are writing, frankly, to thank you for your courage and for standing up for the sanctity of human life. And that's why I'm glad you were here.

Carlotta Jackson: Dr. Dobson, you have stood for life for a long time as well and we thank you so much.

Dr. James Dobson: I've been at it for a long time.

Carlotta Jackson: Yes sir, you have. A long time. Bless you, Dr. Dobson.

Dr. Robert Jackson: Thank you, Dr. Dobson. We love you and we appreciate you.

Dr. James Dobson: Well, thank you all for being with us. Come back, will you?

Dr. Robert Jackson: We'll come back.

Dr. James Dobson: I would love to have you here again.

Carlotta Jackson: Thank you.

Dr. James Dobson: And it's a great thing. One of the neat things about doing this program and the previous one for 45 years is the people I meet and the godly people that are out there trying to serve the Lord. You're among them and let's keep this relationship alive.

Roger Marsh: In Proverbs 31 verse 8, the Bible says, "Speak up for those who cannot speak up for themselves, for the rights of all who are destitute." As Christians, we have a responsibility to care for those who are vulnerable and helpless. Children in the womb are one of the most helpless and vulnerable populations on earth. They have no defense against an abortionist's instruments. They can't fight the chemical death brought on by an abortion pill. We must speak up for them. This could mean volunteering at your local pregnancy center. It could mean reading a pro-life book so that you're more informed next time a family member or friend brings up the topic of abortion. This also could mean giving financially to Family Talk or any one of the great pro-life organizations that we partner with in this fight to end the slaughter of the preborn.

We hope that you've been encouraged by this conversation over the past couple of days, and to learn more about Dr. Robert Jackson Jr. and his wife Carlotta, go to our website at We have links there to some of our favorite pro-life organizations' websites as well, so make sure you check those out also. That's Or feel free to give us a call. Our team is available around the clock to answer your questions about Family Talk or the JDFI. We're also here to take your prayer requests and to pray with you and for you. Our number is (877) 732-6825. That's (877) 732-6825. Well that concludes today's edition of Family Talk. For Dr. Dobson and his wife Shirley, Dr. Tim Clinton, and all of us here at the Dr. James Dobson Family Institute, I'm Roger Marsh. God's richest blessings to you and your family.

Announcer: This has been a presentation of the Dr. James Dobson Family Institute.
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