LifeSite News reports that an anti-abortion ad produced by Priests for Life has been rejected by a Canadian television station. (The video is embedded at the bottom of this post.)

When I read that a pro-life message had been rejected for being “too graphic” I was sure this was some unfair liberal media bias being played out in the name of sensitivity. I rolled my eyes and clicked play.

But then I found the ad deeply disturbing.

It is graphic. But is it too graphic?

I don’t know.

The ad begins with the words “Everyone against abortion please raise your hand” and then shows an image of a baby’s hand in an adult’s hand. Only when the camera pans out, though, do we see that it is actually an aborted baby’s hand, separated from its body.

Are there grosser images on Law and Order and CSI most nights of the week? Absolutely.

But the fact that this is a real baby’s hand is disconcerting—in a way that gory special effects produced with silicon and make up never could be. A real baby was once attached to the hand we see in this video. One whose body was torn apart for the crime of being unplanned and unwanted by his parents.

Some part of me wants to join other outraged pro-lifers, write some angry letters, make demands that we stop hiding the truth, and join the Let the Ad Run Facebook group.

But some other part of me can’t bring myself to do those things. Perhaps it’s the mom part. I am left not knowing what to make of this ad, except that I know I wouldn’t want my young children to see it.

I am sure that Priests for Life means for the image to be unnerving in this way. It’s a very effective way to wake people up to the horror and reality of abortion, after all.

It’s the kind of graphic image that no one should have to see. And yet perhaps all of us need to.