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Pro-Life

Abortion at Any Stage of Pregnancy Ends a Human Life

No disturbing images here, just an excellent educational video on how life begins at conception and should be protected at all stages of development. According to polling data from 2003 (these numbers have fallen since then) cited in the video, 66% of American believe abortion should be legal in the first trimester, while only 10% believe it should be legal in the third trimester.  What’s the difference?…watch the video
H/T The hermeneutic of continuity


Bishop Tobin on Pres. Obama’s "Shameful Record on Abortion"

Bishop Thomas Tobin of the Diocese of Providence hits the nail on the head with his latest Without a Doubt column in the diocesan newspaper, the Rhode Island Catholic. Bishop Tobin comments on President Obama’s speech in Tucson and though it was a good speech, “President Obama’s shameful record on abortion leaves his touching tribute and appeal to goodness in Tucson – and other expressions of compassion – sterile and meaningless. As he stood on the stage in Tucson, he was a prophet without credentials; his speech, a song without a soul.”

The President’s Speech; Why I Wasn’t Impressed

BY BISHOP THOMAS J. TOBIN

Since that deadly day nearly two weeks ago, the story has dominated the news; we’ve learned many details about the deranged shooter and his innocent victims; we’ve debated the causes and consequences of the event; and we’ve prayed for all those who have suffered so much from the violence.

President Obama traveled to Tucson and did his level best to offer his sympathy and support, to encourage a city and a nation, and to invite us all to a better future marked especially by more civility in public discourse. In asking us to learn from and move beyond the terrible moment, the president appealed to Holy Scripture and to the better instincts of the human family. Noble sentiments all. As some have said, and I agree, it was his best moment as president.

As I watched Mr. Obama, though, and later reflected on his speech, I sensed there was something missing; there was something that left me cold, unimpressed and unmoved.

And suddenly it became clear. The problem, at least for me, is that President Obama’s persistent and willful promotion of abortion renders his compassionate gestures and soaring rhetoric completely disingenuous. “O come on, Bishop Tobin,” I hear you say. “Abortion’s not the only moral issue in the world.” Correct, I respond. Abortion’s not the only moral issue in the world but it is the most important. And, I confess, abortion policy is the prism through which I view everything this president says and does.

Is there any longer any doubt that Barack Obama is the most pro-abortion president we’ve ever had?

President Obama has enthusiastically supported the Supreme Court decision, Roe v. Wade that has allowed virtually unrestricted access to abortion in our nation and has resulted in approximately 50 million deaths since 1973.

President Obama has consistently surrounded himself with pro-abortion advisors, and has appointed pro-abortion politicians to key positions in the federal government, including his two nominees for the Supreme Court.

President Obama has promulgated policies, including the overturn of the Mexico City Policy (within the first few hours of his presidency) that requires taxpayer monies to provide abortions around the world. Similarly he signed an executive order that forces taxpayer funding of embryonic stem cell research; he signed a bill that overturned the 13-year-long ban of abortion funding in the nation’s capital; and he directed the passage of health care legislation that opens the door to federal funding of abortions and could eventually limit the freedom of religion for individuals and institutions who find abortion morally repugnant.

President Obama has made abortion a key foreign policy issue, pressuring nations to accept abortion policies; he’s supported several pro-abortion initiatives of the United Nations; and he’s appointed Hillary Clinton as the Secretary of State. Secretary Clinton has had a consistent pro-abortion record and in her international travels has promoted abortion as a human right.

The full accounting of President Obama’s track record on abortion goes on for eight typed pages, a very sad and discouraging litany. The net effect, though, is that President Obama’s shameful record on abortion leaves his touching tribute and appeal to goodness in Tucson – and other expressions of compassion – sterile and meaningless. As he stood on the stage in Tucson, he was a prophet without credentials; his speech, a song without a soul.

Perhaps the president’s most moving rhetoric was that about Christina Taylor Green, the precious nine-year-old slain in the barrage of bullets. As a father of two beautiful daughters himself, the president’s words were surely personal and sincere. Of this child he said: “In Christina we see all of our children. So curious, so trusting, so energetic and full of magic . . . So deserving of our love.”

But I can’t help but ask, respectfully, “Mr. President, why can’t you see our other children – so curious, so trusting, so energetic and full of magic, and so deserving of our love – in all of the unborn children who didn’t live because of our nation’s embrace of the abortion option?”

And in one of the most dramatic moments of his speech, Mr. Obama announced that the wounded congresswoman, Gabrielle Giffords, opened her eyes for the first time just after he’d completed his visit to her. “A miracle” some proclaimed, and certainly a welcome sign of recovery at which we all rejoice.

But I can’t help but wonder how many tiny eyes will never open, will never see the light of day, because of this president’s shortsighted and zealous promotion of abortion.

It’s truly tragic that our president – for whose safety and well-being we pray all the time and who has demonstrated an impressive ability to inspire other people – is unable to see the deadly consequences of his abortion agenda. Perhaps we need another miracle, to open his eyes, that he might see and understand how wrong abortion is, how sinful it is, how violent it is, and how it’s destroying the life of our nation.


unPlanned – Behind the Scenes of Planned Parenthood

Remember the story back in October 2009 when a Texas Planned Parenthood clinic director quit her job and joined the pro-life cause?  Her name is Abbey Johnson and after witnessing an ultrasound guided abortion procedure she left her career and joined the pro-life supporters who prayed outside the clinic she used to manage.

Planned Parenthood sued her and placed an injunction to prevent her from revealing the “behind the scenes” of the abortion biz.  The lawsuit was recently dropped and she is releasing her new tell-all book of her story and how Planned Parenthood distorts the truth in order to promote their abortion business model.  The first chapter of her book details the event which precipitated her life-changing change of heart. I think it’s a pretty gripping read…click here to buy.

Chapter 1
CHERYL POKED HER HEAD INTO MY OFFICE. “Abby, they need an extra person back in the exam room. Are you free?”
I looked up from my paperwork, surprised. “Sure.”
Though I’d been with Planned Parenthood for eight years, I had never been called into the exam room to help the medical team during an abortion, and I had no idea why I was needed now. Nurse-practitioners were the ones who assisted in abortions, not the other clinic staff. As director of this clinic in Bryan, Texas, I was able to fill in for any position in a pinch, except, of course, for doctors or nurses performing medical procedures. I had, on a few occasions, agreed at a patient’s request to stay with her and even hold her hand during the procedure, but only when I’d been the counselor who’d worked with her during intake and counseling. That was not the case today. So why did they need me?
Today’s visiting abortionist had been here at the Bryan clinic only two or three times before. He had a private abortion practice about 100 miles away. When I’d talked with him about the job several weeks before, he had explained that at his own facility he did only ultrasound-guided abortions — the abortion procedure with the least risk of complications for the woman. Because this method allows the doctor to see exactly what is going on inside the uterus, there is less chance of perforating the uterine wall, one of the risks of abortion. I respected that about him. The more that could be done to keep women safe and healthy, the better, as far as I was concerned. However, I’d explained to him that this practice wasn’t the protocol at our clinic. He understood and said he’d follow our typical procedures, though we agreed he’d be free to use ultrasound if he felt a particular situation warranted it.
To my knowledge, we’d never done ultrasound-guided abortions at our facility. We did abortions only every other Saturday, and the assigned goal from our Planned Parenthood affiliate was to perform 25 to 35 procedures on those days. We liked to wrap them up by around 2 p.m. Our typical procedure took about 10 minutes, but an ultrasound added about five minutes, and when you’re trying to schedule up to 35 abortions in a day, those extra minutes add up.
I felt a moment’s reluctance outside the exam room. I never liked entering this room during an abortion procedure — never welcomed what happened behind this door. But since we all had to be ready at any time to pitch in and get the job done, I pushed the door open and stepped in.
Continue reading here


The Unborn Paradox

********UPDATE*******
don’t miss this read:  http://www.lifenews.com/2010/12/31/mtv-call-it-what-you-want-its-still-abortion/
**********************

The MTV program No Easy Decision has received much attention and ink since it aired last Tuesday.  Despite all the euphemisms and efforts to rationalize and diminish the reality that abortion ends a human life…none of them really worked.  Thus the most disturbing element of the program…this fact didn’t really matter. There was a surprisingly good op-ed piece in the NYT juxtaposing the reality of abortion with the fact that some go through heroic (though also often immoral) measures to have children of their own.  


The Unborn Paradox

The American entertainment industry has never been comfortable with the act of abortion. Film or television characters might consider the procedure, but even on the most libertine programs (a “Mad Men,” a “Sex and the City”), they’re more likely to have a change of heart than actually go through with it. Reality TV thrives on shocking scenes and subjects — extreme pregnancies and surgeries, suburban polygamists and the gay housewives of New York — but abortion remains a little too controversial, and a little bit too real.
This omission is often cited as a victory for the pro-life movement, and in some cases that’s plainly true. (Recent unplanned-pregnancy movies like “Juno” and “Knocked Up” made abortion seem not only unnecessary but repellent.) But it can also be a form of cultural denial: a way of reassuring the public that abortion in America is — in Bill Clinton’s famous phrase — safe and legal, but also rare.
Rare it isn’t: not when one in five pregnancies ends at the abortion clinic. So it was a victory for realism, at least, when MTV decided to supplement its hit reality shows “16 and Pregnant” and “Teen Mom” with last week’s special, “No Easy Decision,” which followed Markai Durham, a teen mother who got pregnant a second time and chose abortion.
MTV being MTV, the special’s attitude was resolutely pro-choice. But it was a heartbreaking spectacle, whatever your perspective. Durham and her boyfriend are the kind of young people our culture sets adrift — working-class and undereducated, with weak support networks, few authority figures, and no script for sexual maturity beyond the easily neglected admonition to always use a condom. Their televised agony was a case study in how abortion can simultaneously seem like a moral wrong and the only possible solution — because it promised to keep them out of poverty, and to let them give their first daughter opportunities they never had.
The show was particularly wrenching, though, when juxtaposed with two recent dispatches from the world of midlife, upper-middle-class infertility. Last month there was Vanessa Grigoriadis’s provocative New York Magazine story “Waking Up From the Pill,” which suggested that a lifetime on chemical birth control has encouraged women “to forget about the biological realities of being female … inadvertently, indirectly, infertility has become the Pill’s primary side effect.” Then on Sunday, The Times Magazine provided a more intimate look at the same issue, in which a midlife parent, the journalist Melanie Thernstrom, chronicled what it took to bring her children into the world: six failed in vitro cycles, an egg donor and two surrogate mothers, and an untold fortune in expenses.
In every era, there’s been a tragic contrast between the burden of unwanted pregnancies and the burden of infertility. But this gap used to be bridged by adoption far more frequently than it is today. Prior to 1973, 20 percent of births to white, unmarried women (and 9 percent of unwed births over all) led to an adoption. Today, just 1 percent of babies born to unwed mothers are adopted, and would-be adoptive parents face a waiting list that has lengthened beyond reason.
Some of this shift reflects the growing acceptance of single parenting. But some of it reflects the impact of Roe v. Wade. Since 1973, countless lives that might have been welcomed into families like Thernstrom’s — which looked into adoption, and gave it up as hopeless — have been cut short in utero instead.
And lives are what they are. On the MTV special, the people around Durham swaddle abortion in euphemism. The being inside her is just “pregnancy tissue.” After the abortion, she recalls being warned not to humanize it: “If you think of it like [a person], you’re going to make yourself depressed.” Instead, “think of it as what it is: nothing but a little ball of cells.”
It’s left to Durham herself to cut through the evasion. Sitting with her boyfriend afterward, she begins to cry when he calls the embryo a “thing.” Gesturing to their infant daughter, she says, “A ‘thing’ can turn out like that. That’s what I remember … ‘Nothing but a bunch of cells’ can be her.”
When we want to know this, we know this. Last week’s New Yorker carried a poem by Kevin Young about expectant parents, early in pregnancy, probing the mother’s womb for a heartbeat:
The doctor trying again to find you, fragile,
fern, snowflake. Nothing.
After, my wife will say, in fear,
impatient, she went beyond her body,
this tiny room, into the ether—
… And there
it is: faint, an echo, faster and further
away than mother’s, all beat box
and fuzzy feedback. …
This is the paradox of America’s unborn. No life is so desperately sought after, so hungrily desired, so carefully nurtured. And yet no life is so legally unprotected, and so frequently destroyed.





MTV’s Treatment of Abortion – Tragic on Many Levels

******UPDATE******

Last night MTV aired a special Pregnant and 16 episode in which a teenager, Markai, decided to abort her second child.  This was very difficult to watch.  Not surprising is how the subject was treated.  I first heard about this by a Salon article this morning and proceeded to watch the video of the episode.  LifeNews.com has a story here as well.  I was heartbroken, astonished, and saddened at how tragic this is in many different ways.  It is worth viewing simply to see the decision making process of this young couple and the kind of support and information they receive.

The most tragic was to see  a very nice girl in a poor situation receiving little or no support, receiving appallingly unscientific and false information, and ultimately rationalizing a decision clearly against her conscience which she admits will haunt her forever.  This could have been avoided with simple financial assistance.  Period.  

Lack of support.  She first discusses the dilemma with the father who says they have to make a decision that is best for him, her, and their daughter (what about the baby she is now pregnant with).  They don’t want their children to suffer through poverty–admirable.  She seeks the advice of her friend who offers to support her decision no matter what she decides.  Adoption is not an option because she will feel too attached,  “I’m in love with this baby already and this baby not doin’ nothing but making me sick” (I love this baby too much to just give her away, too much to let her suffer in poverty, therefore..).  This is irrational.

Appalling information.  She calls the local clinic to get information on abortion services.  The very friendly woman on the phone instructs her that there is a medication abortion where the “pregnancy tissue is expelled”, and there are surgical abortions in which there is “gentle suction to remove the pregnancy”.  She is so upset she needs to end the call.  Later at the clinic she is told not to think of 10 fingers and 10 toes and a forehead, just a ball of cells or it will make you depressed (her baby had a heartbeat at this point).  The sad reality that euphemisms and dehumanizing rhetoric are employed in order to make the unthinkable thinkable. She seeks the help of her mother and gets the following:  “I can’t tell you what to do but this one you’re on your own,  Mommy can’t help you.”  I really feel for this poor soul.

Contradiction on display.  Watching this tragedy unfold is disturbing but an fascinating glimpse into the inner struggle of conscience on vivid display.  “Mommy loves you a whole bunch…she’ll do anything and everything for you in the whole wide world”.  “I never called that thing a baby because I told you not even to think of it as a baby.”  “You hurt my feeling when you called it a thing I know its not a person but it’s still a part of us.”  “You will never feel my pain”  “A thing can turn out just like that (pointing to her 1 yr old daughter)…nothing but a bunch of cells can be her.”  “I wonder if we could have made a better one [decision].”  “I don’t think God would have given me something I couldn’t handle”.   This is difficult to witness.  Tragic.

The episode ends with an interview with two other young women who had abortions.  The pain of their decisions is more than evident.  Pray for all victims of abortion…this includes so many women who suffer and are in pain.

*****UPDATE*****



Youth Pro-life Leaders Respond to MTV’s Abortion Episode
by Bryan Kemper
For weeks we have been hearing about the MTV special that would feature a teen couple contemplating abortion. We were tempted to write about this show last week but decided to wait until the show aired. We know that MTV is no bastion of decency or truth, but we did not think the show would actually go as far as it did. We were wrong.

One very telling feature of the show was that it played without commercial interruption; this is not normal for MTV. This show was obviously funded by some one or some organization with an agenda; a very deadly agenda.
To be honest it felt like this was almost scripted as the perfect pro-abortion propaganda film. The couple was young, poor, and volatile; and they also already had one baby. They talked about God and the father had a Jesus tattoo on one shoulder and was wearing a necklace that looked like a rosary. They could have made it an extreme case, but they kept it simple; I don’t think they could have cast a better couple for this show to make the audience sympathize with their decision to kill their child. Full story at LifeNews.com


If You’re at a Loss for a Mother’s Day Gift…

Look no further!  Cecile Richards, the director of the largest abortion-for-profit-business in the US, Planned Parenthood, issued an annual fund raising message:

Supporter — It’s almost Mother’s Day … and if you have a mother in your life who’s anything like me or my mom (the late Texas Governor Ann Richards), then you know nothing would make her happier than a gift that represents bold and compassionate values. Like a gift in her honor to Planned Parenthood Federation of America. We’ve made it quick and easy — and we’ve even made it pretty.

It doesn’t get any more outrageous than this!  Honor your mother by making another mother childless.  It’s nice to know they’ve made donating as “quick and easy” and ” pretty” as they make their abortion services.


Sacrificing Health Care for Abortion

If President Obama and the Congressional leadership truly wanted health care reform, they would maintain the 33 year precedent of not forcing those who do not agree with abortion to pay for it with their tax dollars.  If they respected the consciences of individuals and truly sought common ground, health care would now be law.  But they see an opportunity–perhaps their only one–to expand and solidify into law what they perceive to be an absolute right, abortion.  The following article is an excellent analysis:

Throwing the Bathwater Out With the Baby?
by Pat Archbold

In all the discussion about whip counts it is easy to lose sight of what really counts and what the health care debate is really all about.  It should come as little surprise that this is all about abortion, or more specifically about the federal funding of abortion.

However, conversely to what the media would have you believe, it is not primarily about Bart Stupak and a handful of pro-life Democrats holding up health-care reform.  Rather, it is about the leadership of the Democrat party’s willingness to sacrifice their electoral livelihoods and/or health-care “reform” in order to make sure abortion is covered.

The real truth is that if health-care reform were the true overriding objective of President Obama and the Democrat leadership in Congress, then they could have passed this bill months ago.  Instead, Democrats in the Senate refused to compromise on keeping the status quo—an over three decade prohibition on federal funds for abortion. If they had crafted language similar to the Stupak amendment in the House, which merely reflects the status quo, Obamacare would now be the law of the land.

They refused.  Now again in the House, Nancy Pelosi has struggled for months to find votes for the bill.  Even now, the Democrat leadership would rather risk their careers and blatantly violate the Constitution rather than give in on abortion and the Stupak language.  This gives proof to the lie that Obamacare does not change current law on abortion and makes inexplicable the willingness of some Catholics to blindly accept this falsehood.

This bill is all about funding abortion. The Democrats understand that this may be the one chance in the next decade to get this done and they will not sacrifice it.  They will sacrifice the Constitution and their own jobs, but not federally funded abortion.

I am not the only one who thinks so.  Bart Stupak appeared on Greta Van Susteren’s show last night and stated that the Democrats know this is their opportunity.  The Democrats have made clear they intend to throw out the baby, the only question is whether they are willing to throw out the bathwater to do it.  It seems the answer is yes.