Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Media and Politics


‘The Good Wife’ Wants to ‘Kick Some Pro-Lifer Butt in 2016’

By Karen Townsend
thegoodwifeSeason 7 of The Good Wife is off with a roar using timely references for its liberal, pro-abortion viewers. The writers pull no punches that this show promotes Hillary Clinton for President – a continuing part of this season’s storyline is that Peter (Chris Noth) is running for re-election as governor of Illinois and is really, really hoping to be Hillary’s pick for Vice President.
In this episode, “Innocents,” Alicia (Julianna Margulies), Peter’s ex-wife, notes how much their relationship and the Clintons’ are alike. Both relationships, you see, are full of adultery and enabling. How fun! Alicia and Hillary could swap tips on how best to live with a man who has so little respect for women!
-Oh, come on.
-No, Peter, you want to be Hillary’s vice president. The way to do that is by showing you have a happy family. A family that overcame your sexual indiscretions because your wife forgave you and continues to forgive you.
-You’re being used.
-I know. Who isn’t?
For good measure, a reference to abortion and Emily’s List is brought into the mix. Diane (Christine Baranski) is having a cozy lunch with some professional women in an upscale restaurant. This bunch includes members of EMILY’s List – a political PAC that raises money for pro-abortion female candidates. Diane tells the group that just raising money isn’t enough, they have to raise the bar a bit. A Super PAC, perhaps? Next thing we know, the senile older equity partner of the law firm, Howard (Jerry Adler), is crashing the lunch and declaring, “I think abortion is great!” Just to make sure you understand where he stands, he asks Diane if they are ready to “kick some pro-lifer butt in 2016.”
-Simply donating to pro-choice candidates isn’t enough anymore. We need to think much bigger.
-Is that your polite way of saying we should launch a super pac, Diane?
-Well, it’s a much more flexible structure.
Howard: Good afternoon, ladies. Howard. Howard Lyman. And may I say how honored we are to be having this meeting with the leadership of Emily’s World?
-Emily’s List.
-Of course. So, Diane, are we gonna help these ladies kick some pro-lifer butt in 2016?
-Uh, Howard, may I have a moment?
-Cary tried to keep me out of this meeting. I will not be sidelined.
-Cary’s not involved with this group.
-Don’t enable him, Diane.
-And may I say, ladies, I think abortion is great.
-You told Howard not to attend my meeting with Emily’s List, knowing he’d show up and make a fool of himself.
-No. I told him not to show up.
-You two have to quit this. Now!
There was really no reason for the abortion support narrative to be brought into this show, other than to simply take a cheap shot at pro-lifers because they can.
Editor’s note. This appeared at newsbusters.org.

Source: NRLC News



MDs: Declare Total Non-Cooperation with Euthanasia!

By Wesley J. Smith
Supreme Court of Canada
Supreme Court of Canada
The cowardly Canadian Medical Association went “neutral’ on euthanasia before it was forced nationwide by that country’s Supreme Court.
An encouraging 63% of doctors say they won’t participate. So, euthanasia zealots–many in the medical establishment–are moving toward coercion.
On the downside, it came out in support–and 79% of voting delegates oppose conscience exemptions for their morally or religiously opposed colleagues.
Now, the CMA’s mealy-mouths are calling for “cooling off periods” before doctors kill. From the CTV story:
The Canadian Medical Association suggests there should be a 14-day period to allow patients who want the help of a physician to end their lives to reconsider whether they are making the right decision.
What a sad and nihilistic joke.
NO! The proper medical and ethical response is total non-cooperation.
If most doctors refuse to kill–leaving it to the bottom feeders–far fewer patients will be killed. And the message will go out to society:

Euthanasia isn’t healthcare. A lethal injection isn’t medicine. Homicide is not a medical treatment.
Editor’s note. This appeared at Wesley’s fine blog.

Source: NRLC News

Planned Parenthood's Sham


Planned Parenthood’s defense of using fetal organs to ‘treat and cure’ is a sham

By Bill Cassidy and David Prentice
adult stem cellsIn the wake of videos exposing its involvement in trading fetal organs, Planned Parenthood has resorted to a “silver lining” defense. The taking of brains, hearts, lungs and livers from the unborn, even the delivery of intact fetal bodies to commercial middlemen, is hailed as a valid scientific procedure. The words “treat and cure” are used.

Proponents of using fetal body parts from induced abortion claim three areas of medical research need harvested tissue: transplantation to treat diseases and injuries, vaccine development and basic biology research. Yet the facts show neither necessity nor therapeutic success when relying on an aborted baby’s organs and tissues.

First, a little history. Human fetal tissue transplant research began decades ago. The first recorded fetal tissue transplants were in the 1920s in the U.K. and Italy; the transplants failed. In the United States, the earliest documented attempts came in the 1930s, to treat diabetes, and they also failed, as did transplant attempts in succeeding decades. By 1991 approximately 1,500 people had received fetal pancreatic tissue transplants in attempts to treat diabetes, mostly in the former Soviet Union and the People’s Republic of China.

Up to 24 fetuses were used per transplant, but fewer than 2 percent of patients responded. Today, rather than failed fetal tissue, patients take insulin shots and pharmaceuticals to control their diabetes, and adult stem cell transplants have shown initial success at ameliorating diabetes.
Between 1960 and 1990, numerous attempts were made to transplant fetal liver and thymus for various conditions. According to a review just last year, “the clinical results and patient survival rates were largely dismal.” Conditions such as anemias and immunodeficiencies are now treated routinely with adult stem cells, including umbilical cord blood stem cells, in some instances even while the patient is still in the womb.

Between 1988 and 1994, roughly 140 Parkinson’s disease patients received fetal tissue (up to six fetuses per patient), with varying results. But this glimmer of utility faded when subsequent reports showed that severe problems developed from the transplants, including growth of non-brain tissues (e.g., skinlike tissue, hair, cartilage) in the brain.

The first full clinical trial (funded by the National Institutes of Health–NIH) using fetal tissue for Parkinson’s patients was prominently featured in The New York Times in 2001, documenting the tragic results. Doctors described the patients writhing, twisting, and jerking with uncontrollable movements, further noting the results were “absolutely devastating,” “tragic, catastrophic,” “a real nightmare.” A second large, controlled study published in 2003 and also funded by NIH showed similar results, with over half of the patients developing potentially disabling tremors caused by the fetal brain tissue transplants.

These two large studies led to a moratorium on fetal tissue transplants for Parkinson’s. Long-term follow-up of a few of the patients in these studies showed that even the grafted fetal tissue that grew in patients’ brains took on signs of the disease and were not effective.
Disastrous results for patients are seen not only with fetal tissue but also with fetal stem cells. In a recent report, a young boy developed tumors on his spine resulting from fetal stem cells injected into his body.

In decided contrast to results from fetal tissue, a recent review found that as of December 2012, over one million patients had been treated with hematopoietic (blood-forming) adult stem cells (the basis of bone marrow or cord blood transplants), with uncounted additional patients benefitting from other adult stem cell types and transplants.

In terms of claims regarding vaccine development, it is true that early attempts (1940s and 1950s) at growing viruses used cultures of mixed human fetal tissue, because it was the only human tissue that scientists knew how to grow in the lab at that time. For the same reason, viruses including poliovirus were often grown in human fetal cell lines such as WI-38 and MRC-5 in the 1960s and 1970s.
But now most manufacturers of polio vaccine and other vaccines use other, more suitable cell types including monkey cells, and most do not use fetal cells. Newer cell lines and better culture techniques make reliance on fetal cells antiquated. Moreover, the Centers for Disease Control and other leading medical authorities now say, “No new fetal tissue is needed to produce cell lines to make these vaccines, now or in the future.”

A clear example of the lack of necessity for further fetal tissue is development of the new vaccine — rVSV-ZEBOV — against Ebola virus. The successful results of the field trial were published on July 31, 2015 in the journal Lancet, welcome news in the fight against this deadly disease.
This successful Ebola vaccine was developed without using fetal tissue or fetal cell lines, but rather with Vero, a monkey cell line, demonstrating again that medical science has moved well beyond any need for fetal tissue in productive medical research.

Broad, undefined claims also continue to be made that fetal tissue is needed to study disease biology or generic development. It is telling that these assertions never cite specific results, but only vague promises, still clinging to antiquated science (not to mention medieval ideas of organ harvest).
Current, progressive alternatives such as induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells provide an unlimited source of cells for study, and can be produced from the tissue of any human being without harm to the donor. These iPS cells, the creation of which won the Nobel Prize, have the ability to form virtually any cell or tissue type for basic study, disease modeling or potential clinical application. Furthermore, stem cells from umbilical cord blood also show significant potential not only as laboratory models but also for therapy, and are already treating thousands of patients for numerous conditions.

The long and short of it is that the heyday of fetal tissue research never really happened, and the gift of adult stem cell science has rendered the occasionally barbaric methods of the past functionally obsolete. Congress is right to put an end to this brutal trade once and for all and to defund its remnant of ghoulish devotees.

Source: NRLC News

Media Bias


A demented “defense” of Planned Parenthood

By Dave Andrusko
Andrea Grimes
Andrea Grimes

You know how it is sometimes. You’re about to layer into some pro-abortion propaganda piece, nonsensical point by nonsensical point, and then you get stopped in your tracks.
You run into statements so off the wall, so out to sea, so part of a different dimension that you can’t help but stop in stunned amazement.

That’s what happened to me when I read a piece in Rolling Stone by Andrea Grimes. I’m thinking of two statements in particular.

For those who read NRL News Today on a regular basis, Grimes’ name is a familiar one. She writes for (among others) the pro-abortion blog RH Reality Check, and may be best remembered as the originator of a demented version of the “Ice Bucket Challenge.”

At the time Grimes told her readers that she started her campaign “as something of a Twitter joke” after hearing about the ALS ice-bucket challenge. Then she figured out that just as abortion perverts real medicine, the Tacos and Beer challenge could pervert/co-opt the ALS challenge all to further the “destigmatization” of abortion. That is,encourage people to eat Tacos and drink beer and then donate money to fund abortions!
After all abortion is “normal” and “common,” Grimes told her readers. So, too, is child and spousal abuse but only the Abortion Establishment would encourage us to hoist a few in order to multiple the number of victims.
So we shouldn’t be surprised when she bashes the Center for Medical Progress and Congressional Republicans for having the audacity to draw back the curtain and expose what Planned Parenthood and Tissue Procurement Organization say (and do) when they think it’s just them.
The undercover videos caused–and continue to cause–a tremendous controversy because of the utterly cavalier way Big Shot PPFA officials talk about crunching and crushing unborn babies, the better to secure intact baby body parts.
Yet Grimes tells her readers
[T]he video campaign against Planned Parenthood has taken root in contemporary conversations about the politics of reproductive health care, and the myth that Planned Parenthood is a baby-killing behemoth persists, despite all evidence to the contrary.
PPFA President Cecile Richards
PPFA President Cecile Richards
Pardon? PPFA does not abort at least a third of the over 1 million babies lost in abortion clinics each and every year?
It’s not true that nearly one out of every eight women walking through the door of a Planned Parenthood clinic has an abortion?
There is no “evidence” that abortions provide at least $150 million in annual revenues for PPFA?
It’s not true that Planned Parenthood received at least $528 million annually from various levels of government, mostly through federal programs?
Pro-lifers just dreamed up one senior Planned Parenthood official boasting in 2014, “We have 40 percent of the [abortion] market in the whole country”? Or that PPFA now defines abortion as a “core” service, which means that PPFA requires every PPFA affiliate to provide abortions?
Of course ALL of that is true which is precisely why it is 100% accurate to say that PPFA IS a “baby-killing behemoth.”
And then, a statement even weirder. In a parenthetical aside, Grimes writes
(By the way, “baby parts” is not a medical term that any reputable doctor would use professionally. Anne Geddes takes pictures of baby parts; doctors handle fetal tissue and products of conception.)

In the CMP videos, you see lab staff handling intact baby parts. You hear references repeatedly because researchers WANT intact organs–kidneys and lungs and trachea and livers and skulls with the baby’s brains still in them.

Those who traffic in this ghastly business may like to call this “fetal tissue” or “products of conception,” but outside of them and their apologists none of the rest of humanity does.
And Anne Geddes doesn’t take pictures of “baby parts.” On her website you read

Anne Geddes is the world’s foremost baby photographer — a beloved cultural icon known for her iconic, playful images of newborns. . .. Anne creates images that are iconic, award winning, internationally acclaimed, and beloved the world over. [Emphasis mine.]

Only in the world occupied by the likes of Andrea Grimes can the most touching, the most beautiful, and the most emblematic be turned into a shield for the Abortion Industry.
Editor’s note. If you want to peruse stories all day long, either go directly to nationalrighttolifenews.org and/or follow me on Twitter at twitter.com/daveha

Source: NRLC News

Monday, October 12, 2015

Abortion Clinics


“Carafem” —the latest pro-abortion idiocy—abortion as a trip to the spa

By Dave Andrusko
Editor’s note. This first ran earlier this year. It is particularly appropriate in light of some of the comments made Thursday by pro-Democrats on the House Judiciary Committee which we will discuss elsewhere today.

carafemlogoThere is a kind of in for a dime, in for a dollar logic to “Carafem” which (the Washington Post tells us) “promises a ‘spa-like’ experience for women with a very open and unabashed approach to pregnancy termination.”
It’s the latest extension of the hey-abortion-is-no-big-deal mantra that gives us women uploading their abortions onto YouTube [Emily Letts], unfunny “comedies” about casual hook-up/abortions [“Obvious Child”], and a defiant insistence that having an abortion is “as moral as the decision to have a child” (the feminist poet Katha Pollitt).

So what does Carafem offer besides a location in “tony Friendship Heights,” in Maryland, just a few blocks outside of Washington, DC? Several things.
“Slick ads set to go up in Metro stations across the Washington region,” says the Post’s Sandhya Somashekhar, which “leave nothing to doubt: ‘Abortion. Yeah, we do that.’”
Once inside,
“staff members plan to greet clients with warm teas, comfortable robes and a matter-of-fact attitude.
“We don’t want to talk in hushed tones,” said Carafem president Christopher Purdy. “We use the A-word.”
“It’s fresh, it’s modern, it’s clean, it’s caring,” Purdy added. “We use the A-word.” None of this “hushed tones” stuff for Carafem.
But there’s “another striking aspect of the project”–the design. Somashekhar (“the social change reporter” for the Post) tells us
The clinic will have wood floors and a natural wood tone on the walls that recalls high-end salons such as Aveda.
Appointments, offered evenings and weekends, can be booked online or via a 24-hour hotline.
“It was important for us to try to present an upgraded, almost spa-like feel,” said Melissa S. Grant, vice president of health services for the clinic.
If the project is successful, Purdy says, he hopes to expand his model to other states.
In most ways the story is actually less about Carafem per se than it is about how it fits into the counter-offensive by pro-abortionists who are getting their ears pinned back, electorally and in the battle for public opinion: destigmatization.
Lanae Erickson Hatalsky, director of social policy and politics for the relentlessly pro-abortion Third Way
praised efforts to “destigmatize” the procedure, which she said is attracting a passionate new crop of young activists to the movement. The effort to tell personal stories echoes a strategy successfully employed by the gay-rights movement, she said, which helped change public opinion by coaxing people to come out of the closet to their friends, neighbors and colleagues.

Lots of luck with that.
Actually the most interesting section of the story is something NRL News Today has written about numerous times: how the Pro-Abortion Establishment is responding to what is, after all, an in-your-face campaign.

“Groups such as Planned Parenthood are trying to walk a fine line,” Somashekhar tells us diplomatically.

As the very epitome of the old-guard, PPFA is trying to stay “appealing” to the younger set without offending those “who are less supportive of abortion,” as Planned Parenthood spokesman Eric Ferrero delicately put it to the Post.

How? By trying to “communicate is in a more empathetic framework that kind of says, ‘Look, these are really complicated personal issues.’”
But, of course, the whole point of the “No apologies, ever” set is that abortion is not complicated at all!

A woman wants one. A woman (or a girl) gets one. She moves on—and woe be to anyone who dares to disagree that having an abortion is essentially indistinguishable from a quick trip to the spa for a pedicure.
They actually think this is a winning strategy. You have to wonder what planet they are living on.

Source: NRLC News

Down Syndrome


Parents speak up: I was told to abort my baby

Last month, Yahoo printed an article by a mom who horrifyingly wrote that if she had known her daughter would have Down syndrome, she would have aborted her.
The mom argued that every woman should have the right to abort – in other words, kill – their child with Down syndrome if they want to.
Yet that’s not the real story here. The real stories are found in the over 1500 comments below the article.

Numerous people chimed in with their own true stories, making three things very clear.
(Photo credit: Carla Alves)
(Photo credit: Carla Alves)
1) We have no idea how many babies have been aborted for Down syndrome when they were actually perfectly healthy.
2) Parents are being rushed and prodded into making a decision for abortion – without being given the real, modern facts about having a precious child with Down syndrome.
3) Babies with Down syndrome have an absolutely equal right to live and are 100% equally as valuable as any other child. As one commenter said: “Disabled kids have a right to life too – and disabled kids can still experience joy, can still achieve, can still provide joy to their parents, and can still live full and meaningful lives. I don’t believe that it should be a women’s ‘choice’ to abort disabled children for the same reason I don’t believe it should be legal to kill disabled kids.”
Here are just a few of the stories:
Donna wrote of her own prenatal test being completely wrong:
… There is no reason to abort a child. Ever.
My daughter was diagnosed with Down Syndrome. There was no “choice” to me. No matter what she was and is my daughter. And guess what? The test was wrong.
Sharon and Greg shared about their own precious granddaughters:
My Down’s granddaughter, now a 27 year old woman, is joyful, helpful, more organized than we are. Works, live in a group home. At birth doctors told her parents they ‘didn’t have to keep her’, ‘they could turn her over to an institution! Heads up folks..many of the “Fetal Diagnoses” turn out to be wrong! grandma
… She is beautiful, she is loved and she is alive!
Jennifer reiterated the truth that blood tests don’t reveal everything:
I tested positive for possible downs through blood work years ago with my daughter. It was the longest 6 weeks of my life. I chose to keep her no matter what. We did the ultra sound and everything. Luckily for us she came out with not having downs, but now she has the early on set of schizophrenia at the age of 9. She is doing very well with medication, etc. but you can’t tell that in a blood test can you?
(Photo credit: Gezelle Rivera)
(Photo credit: Gezelle Rivera)
Linda told of her friend’s brother and the value he brought to the lives around him:
I have a friend who had a disabled brother. He lived with his parents and worked in a sheltered workshop. He recently died at the age of 79. Billy saw kindness in everyone .Sometimes Saints reside on this planet for a specific purpose,only.
Metalmom said:
I would advise anyone who may be thinking of aborting a Down syndrome fetus to not do it. Down syndrome children will love you and think you are the greatest person in the world throughout their entire lives.
("Tilly has downs syndrome but to me she is beautiful and always will be my little princess." Photo credit: Andreas-photography)
(“Tilly has downs syndrome but to me she is beautiful and always will be my little princess.” Photo credit: Andreas-Photography)
My House shared of having to go through her pregnancy without medical care, because the doctor refused to help her when she chose life for her baby:
I was 19 when I found out my baby had down syndrome. I was 5 months pregnant when I felt in my heart that something was wrong with my baby. I begged by doctor to give me an ultrasound, they didn’t think it was necessary because all of my initial test results were good, but I felt in my heart that something was wrong. The ultrasound confirmed that the their was something wrong with the baby, and the amniocentesis let me know that it was down syndrome. We were so young and scared, we didn’t know what to think or do. I scheduled an abortion but I was never able to make the appt, something in my heart couldn’t allow me to do it. The doctors stopped giving me appts because they said he would probably pass away before I could give birth. … I finally gave birth, and out came a beautiful crying baby boy. … I went to the NICU and saw my beautiful baby. He was called him to Heaven at 2 months old, but I still thank God for the time I was allowed to spend with him. My miracle baby.
Michael, who was adopted, responded to My House, writing:
Apart from Christ, you can do nothing, but as you learned, with him, you can do anything. And now your baby is with the Lord and will be joyful forever. And you know who you are! God bless you and my biological mother who didn’t abort me!
Janika spoke for the couples waiting to adopt babies with Down syndrome:
I can guarantee there are people who DO want that child and would adopt him/her into a loving home. There are actually waiting lists for parents who want to adopt these wonderful children.
Down Syndrome
PattyW agreed:
Why does everyone assume that its either keep the child or abort it. There are many families that would willingly adopt a child with Down Syndrome. … I have a child with Down Syndrome and everyone’s posts are correct, its hard raising a child with a disability but very rewarding. Lets not forget that adoption is always an option over abortion.
Phil h told this story:
I had a neighbor about 20 years ago who was told her unborn child had severe issues and she should kill (abort) her child, she refused and had the baby. Today her son is 20 something, having gone to school through the gifted and talented program, a very intelligent young man who turned out perfectly normal with looks that could have made him a model if he wanted….
Chester mourned the loss of children with Down syndrome – something that is very personal for him:
I’ve volunteered at a camp for children with disabilities for 35 years. When I started the vast majority of children we served had Down Syndrome. Now, the vast majority of the kids are on the autism spectrum. There are very few Down Syndrome kids who get to live anymore. The ones I knew were all very special and sweet and loved life.
If they ever develop a prenatal test for autism, I guess we’ll just close up shop.
(Photo credit: Allison Stillwell Young)
(Photo credit: Allison Stillwell Young)
B told of being pushed to “terminate” her perfectly healthy twins because one of them was prenatally (and wrongly) diagnosed with Down syndrome:
They told us one of our twins had downs syndrome. Asked us 3 times if we wanted to terminate the pregnancy. We said no we wanted to have them anyway. They just turned 1 last month and neither has downs or anything else wrong with them. If we would have listened to the doctors we would have killed 2 perfectly healthy babies…
Patricia shared her thoughts about all babies:
No one can be guaranteed that their child is going to be totally healthy. You pray and love and raise the child you were meant to have. They have rights too!
©Downs Designs

Source: LiveAction News

Pregancy Centers Forced to Promote Abortion


New California law forces pro-life pregnancy centers to promote abortion

California has successfully removed the right to choose – from pro-lifers. On Friday, pro-abortion Governor Jerry Brown signed a bill into law that requires even pro-life, faith-based pregnancy centers provide abortion information, even if it’s against their religious beliefs to do so.
AB775 is known as the Bully Bill because it prevents pro-lifers from exercising their free speech rights. It has been making its way through the California legislative bodies for months, as Live Action News reported earlier this year. And now it’s law.
KCRA reports:
Pregnancy crisis centers often are operated by abortion opponents, and critics say workers imply the facilities provide a range of medical care and have credentials they do not possess.
Under the new law, the centers will be required to offer information about affordable contraception, abortion and prenatal care. Those that are unlicensed also must inform clients of their status.
Backers of the measure include the abortion-rights group NARAL Pro-Choice California.
When the law was being debated, Jonathan Keller, executive director of the California Family Council and California Family Alliance (CFA), said:
Remarkably, AB 775 would turn every Pregnancy Resource Center (PRC) into a state-mandated abortion referral service. The bill would force over 160 PRCs in California to use their lobbies, websites, and literature to promote state-funded ‘free’ abortions, a direct violation of their moral standards. Violators would face heavy fines of at least $500 for each infraction.
But abortion proponents see it the opposite way, as KCRA reports:
Critics say center employees imply the facilities provide a range of medical care and have credentials they do not possess, existing merely to coerce women into continuing their pregnancies. They say the clinics provide false information, including making unproven claims about health risks associated with using birth control or having an abortion.
The authors of the Bully Bill were  pro-abortion Assembly representatives, David Chiu, (D-San Francisco) and Assemblywoman Autumn Burke (D-Los Angeles). The bill had vocal support from NARAL Pro-Choice California, as well as from California’s own Attorney General, Kamala Harris, who is now running for U.S. Senate.  Chiu said in a statement, “A growing and alarming movement is working to mislead women in order to achieve their political ideology.”
But all of the proponents of this bill closed their eyes to the reality that free speech means just that. To force a Catholic-run counseling service, for example, to tell clients how to get an abortion for low or no cost is a conscience violation, and turns civil rights into a farce rather than reality.
Pro-lifers had their own advocates in the legislature.  Assemblywoman Shannon Grove (R-Bakersfield) had fought long and hard to prevent this injustice from being enacted. She said:
“Does the government have a right to tell a newspaper what to write, a preacher what to preach, a private school what to teach? Of course not,” Grove said in arguing against the bill. “So why is it OK for the government to force prolife pregnancy centers against their will to advertise and promote government abortion services?”
Assemblyman James Gallagher also was a vocal and bold opposer of AB775 and challenged the bill’s authors:
Why doesn’t your notice say, ‘adoption’ in it? ‘Free or low-cost access to comprehensive family planning services, prenatal care, adoption, counseling.’ I don’t see any of those services listed in your notice.
You’re saying that these private (entities) who receive no funding—no government funding whatsoever—they’re completely private, they have to tell about the government-funded programs that are out there, but the same is not true of the government programs. They don’t have to say, ‘There’s these groups out there who have qualified, licensed people.’
Ultimately, the  abortion lobby, combined with a heavy pro-abortion majority of political leaders in the state, won this battle, and now religious conviction in pro-life counseling is illegal.
California’s battle to remove the right of free speech for residents opposed to abortion isn’t new, nor is it a surprise to see the bill signed, but it’s a stark reminder that abortion advocates only advocate the right to choose if it adheres to their choice.

Source: LiveAction News



‘Send Congress your uterus’ campaign targets members of Congress

Using the tackiest postcard campaign imaginable, a new website lets women send pictures of a uterus to pro-life members of Congress.
Most abortion advocates lose their reasoning when it comes to fighting for abortion. They consider it “controlling their uterus” if anyone opposes killing a new, unique life inside the uterus. Now two women have found a way to make a statement – and probably a bit of profit – off the accusation.

The Huffington Post reports:
Frustrated with politicians who are voting to restrict abortion access, startup colleagues Alexa Natanson and Chelsea Kent launched Send Congress Your Uterus last week. For $3.50, the online service will send one of three postcards to a congressperson who has voted against abortion access.
“Dear Congress member, You’re receiving this because your voting patterns have demonstrated to the women of these United States, that you believe you have a right to regulate our bodies. Enjoy the sentiment of this postcard.”​ 
People who buy the postcards are not able to select which member of Congress to send their postcard to, but “the website identifies 305 members of Congress who have voted against reproductive rights, for example by supporting measures that mandate waiting periods or require that abortions must take place in ambulatory surgical centers. ” The postcards will be sent to any one of these 305 pro-lifers – who have actually, by their votes, taken action to ensure the safety of women.
The tone of the whole campaign is a sarcastic and defensive one. The site says:
Frustrated with the government’s attempts to control the female body? Members of Congress are chipping away at women’s reproductive rights. So, we’re sending them love letters. For $3.50 we’ll send the postcard of your choice to one of the 305 Congress members who have voted against your uterus.
Of course, no member of Congress is sitting there voting against a woman’s uterus. Unlike these defensive drones, the 305 members of Congress are voting in light of what science proves – that there is a new human life inside the uterus, and the Constitution of the United States guarantees that person a right to life, too. The idea that an educated man or woman actually sits around pondering how to block a woman’s uterus from having rights is so outlandish that it would be humorous, if it weren’t so sad.
A unique human person who has rights
A unique human person who has rights. See more amazing photos and videos at www.ehd.org.
The only people thinking day and night about a uterus are the ones who take time and money to create a website to send illustrated uterus postcards to people who will probably never see them or be influenced by them anyway.
Even if the postcards reflect what the website creators believe, there are more effective ways to influence political decisions than sarcasm and profanity. But logic and reason aren’t nearly as easy to elicit publicity.
Pictures of a uterus might be headline grabbing – but much in the same way a middle schooler uses a sexual term for shock value. People react, but no one can really take it seriously.

Source: LiveAction News

Friday, October 9, 2015



What science tells us about the unborn

By Paul Stark
zygoteBefore deciding how we ought to treat the unborn—a moral question—we must first be clear about what the unborn is. This is a scientific question, and it is answered with clarity by the science of human embryology.
When sperm fertilizes egg
The facts of reproduction are straightforward. Upon completion of the fertilization process, sperm and egg have ceased to exist (this is why “fertilized egg” is an inaccurate term); what exists is a single cell with 46 chromosomes (23 from each parent) that is called a zygote. The coming into existence of the zygote is the point of conception—the beginning of the life of a new human organism. The terms zygote, embryo and fetus all refer to developmental stages in the life of a human being.

Four features of the unborn

Four features of the unborn (i.e., the human zygote, embryo or fetus) are relevant to his or her status as a human being. First, the unborn is living. She meets all the biological criteria for life: metabolism, cellular reproduction and reaction to stimuli. Moreover, she is clearly growing, and dead things (of course) don’t grow.
Second, the unborn is human. She possesses a human genetic signature that proves this beyond any doubt. She is also the offspring of human parents, and we know that humans can only beget humans (they cannot beget dogs or cats, for instance). The unborn may not seem to “look” human (at least in her earlier stages), but in fact she looks exactly like a human at that level of human development. Living things do not become something different as they grow and mature; rather, they develop the way that they do precisely because of the kind of being they already are.
Third, the unborn is genetically and functionally distinct from (though dependent on and resting inside of) the pregnant woman. Her growth and maturation is internally directed, and her DNA is unique and different from that of any other cell in the woman’s body. She develops her own arms, legs, brain, central nervous system, etc. To say that a fetus is a part of the pregnant woman’s body is to say that the woman has four arms and four legs, and that about half of pregnant women have penises.

A whole organism

Fourth, the unborn is a whole or complete (though immature) organism. That is, she is not a mere part of another living thing, but is her own organism—an entity whose parts work together in a self-integrated fashion to bring the whole to maturity. Her genetic information is fully present at conception, determining to a large extent her physical characteristics (including sex, eye color, skin color, bone structure, etc.); she needs only a suitable environment and nutrition to develop herself through the different stages of human life.
Thus, the unborn is a distinct, living and whole human organism—a full-fledged member of the species Homo sapiens, like you and me, only at a much earlier stage in her development. She is a human being.

Affirmed by textbooks, scientists

This fact is confirmed by embryology textbooks and leading scientists, who could be cited here ad nauseam. In The Developing Human: Clinically Oriented Embryology, perhaps the most widely used embryology text, Keith L. Moore and T.V.N. Persaud explain: “Human development begins at fertilization when a male gamete or sperm (spermatozoon) unites with a female gamete or oocyte (ovum) to form a single cell — a zygote. This highly specialized, totipotent cell marked the beginning of each of us as a unique individual.”

Langman’s Embryology notes, “The development of a human begins with fertilization, a process by which the spermatozoon from the male and the oocyte from the female unite to give rise to a new organism, the zygote.”
Adds Dr. Micheline Matthews-Roth of Harvard Medical School, “It is scientifically correct to say that an individual human life begins at conception, when egg and sperm join to form the zygote, and this developing human always is a member of our species in all stages of its life.”
In 1981 a U.S. Senate judiciary subcommittee heard expert testimony on the question of when life begins. The official subcommittee report reached this conclusion:

“Physicians, biologists, and other scientists agree that conception marks the beginning of the life of a human being—a being that is alive and is a member of the human species. There is overwhelming agreement on this point in countless medical, biological, and scientific writings.”

The report also noted that “no witness [who testified before the subcommittee] raised any evidence to refute the biological fact that from the moment of conception there exists a distinct individual being who is alive and is of the human species. No witness challenged the scientific consensus that unborn children are ‘human beings,’ insofar as the term is used to mean living beings of the human species.”

Evidence is decisive

The evidence, then, shows that the unborn is a living organism of the human species from his or her beginning at conception. Thus, to kill the unborn by abortion or for embryo-destructive research is to kill a human being. This is not a moral claim about whether such killing is right or wrong, but a factual one, based on the scientific evidence of embryology.
Objections to this conclusion stem from scientific ignorance, confusion or misunderstanding. I consider common objections below.

Objection #1: ‘No one knows’

The claim that “no one knows when life begins” is so often repeated that it bears addressing. While there is indeed debate about when a human being becomes (if she isn’t by nature) valuable and deserving of full moral respect, the strictly biological matter is clear, as I explain above. The life of a human being, a living member of our species, begins at conception.
(Contrary to what many pro-choice advocates apparently believe, agnosticism regarding the unborn is actually a decisive reason to refrain from killing her. A hunter does not shoot into the brush unless he is sure that his target is not a person.)

Objection #2: Potential of sperm and egg

Some say that if the unborn is a human being, then we must (absurdly) conclude that the sperm and egg are also human beings, for they also have the potential to become a child, a teenager and eventually an adult.

This is bad biology. The sperm and egg are simply parts of larger organisms. When they unite they cease to be and something new comes into existence: the zygote, a whole organism with the active capacity to develop into a mature member of its species, given only a suitable environment and nutrition. Each of us was once a zygote, but none of us was ever a sperm or egg.

Objection #3: Somatic cells

Some people compare the zygote and embryo to regular somatic (body) cells, which are also human, living and possessing of a full genetic code. Since these cells are not actual human beings—brushing skin cells off my arm is not the killing of hundreds of tiny humans—the zygote or embryo is not an actual human being either, the critic reasons.

But there is a crucial difference. The unborn is its own organism, not a mere part of another. The unborn from conception is a distinct and complete individual whose parts work together in a coordinated fashion to develop the whole to maturity. That is not true of skin or other somatic cells, which function as mere parts of a larger organism.

Objection #4: Twinning

Defenders of embryo-destructive research sometimes say that because very early embryos can split into two distinct embryos—an event called twinning—the early embryo must not itself be a unitary individual. But the conclusion does not follow.

When a flatworm is cut in half, or when an organism is cloned via somatic cell nuclear transfer, a single organism gives rise to two distinct organisms. In both cases the original entity is a unitary, self-integrating, whole individual. The scientific evidence shows that the embryo likewise functions as its own organism, from the zygote stage forward, regardless of whether twinning occurs.
Objection #5: Brain death

The irreversible cessation of brain activity is used as a criterion for the death of a human being, even though some of the body’s organs can live after brain death. For this reason, some advocates of embryo-destructive research claim that the life of a human being does not begin until the unborn develops a brain.

But brain death is accepted as a criterion only because it signals the end of the body’s ability to function as an integrated organism, for which the brain, in older humans, is essential. After brain death there is no longer a unitary organism. By contrast, the embryo from conception is a unitary organism, actively developing herself to the next stage of human life. The brain, at this earliest stage, is not yet necessary for her to function as such.
All, or only some?

Because the scientific facts are clear, the permissibility of taking unborn human life hinges on a moral question. Do all human beings merit full moral respect and protection, as you and I uncontroversially do—or only some?

Editor’s note. Paul Stark is Communications Associate for MCCL, National Right to Life’s state affiliate. The following originally ran in two separate issues of Minnesota Citizens Concerned for Life (MCCL) News.
Source: NRLC News

Ireland and Assisted Suicide


Ireland may debate assisted suicide soon

By Paul Russell, Founder, Hope Australia
Irish MP John Halligan
Irish MP John Halligan
The Irish Times has reported that Irish Independent MP, John Halligan, plans to table [introduce] his assisted suicide bill in the Dáil (parliament) ‘within weeks’.

The threat of an attempt at legalizing assisted suicide has been building for some time.
The first significant attempt at law reform came via a Court case brought by MS sufferer, Marie Fleming. She was seeking assurances that her husband, Tom Curran, would not be prosecuted if he assisted her in her suicide, claiming that her disability rendered her unable to act herself and that, therefore, she was being discriminated against under the Irish Constitution.
Marie Fleming’s case failed on appeal

It was very similar to the successful British Court case of fellow MS sufferer, Debbie Purdy in 2009. That forced the UK Public Prosecutor to issue guidelines for the circumstances under which an accompanying relative or friend to Dignitas in Zurich would not face the law.
In April this year, Gail O’Rorke was tried in the Irish criminal court and found not guilty of an offence against the Irish laws prohibiting assisted suicide in relation to another MS sufferer, Bernadette Forde.
In June this year, Dr. Kevin Fitzpatrick, director of the Euthanasia Prevention Coalition International, held a conference in Dublin that included the timely launch of HOPE Ireland, in preparation for the pending debate.
Fitzpatrick said recently:
“We must oppose legalizing euthanasia/assisted suicide for reasons of the terrible consequences that have come where laws have been passed. Even a minimal scratch at the surface reveals all the dangers inherent in such laws. The evidence is overwhelming and that is where the ‘big’ conversation needs to be honest.”
John Halligan seems to be in agreement, telling the Irish Times that we need a, “dignified, compassionate and thoughtful debate”.

“This affects many families and at some point it may affect all of us or a member of our families. You have a right to dignity in life and you have a right to a dignified death.”
No complaints so far. On this we agree, but differ, sadly, from that point forward. Halligan offered much the same kind of rhetoric heard across the Irish Sea in the recent Commons Debate at Westminster.

As was expected, Halligan was assisted in the development of his bill by Tom Curran, husband of Marie Fleming and co-ordinator of Exit International Europe, an arm of Philip Nitschke’s network.
Halligan also claims that the draft bill was ‘compiled by two barristers’, yet in the description of the criteria – the so-called ‘safeguards’ – it sounds like the bill is substantially the same as every other type of bill of this kind, most, thankfully, defeated [except for California].

This all seems more about an attempt to impress rather than any sense that the bill is going to be some revolutionary text that will solve all of the problems present in every other bill. It simply cannot do that. No matter what the framework, the risks are inherent.

It will be a huge task for Halligan to negotiate the rigors and torturous paths of parliament via his private bill [a bill not introduced by the government]. Also standing against him is the Supreme Court judgment in the Fleming case and the more recent and overwhelming defeats of legislation in Scotland and the UK.

Still, one must never underestimate an opponent.
Editor’s note. This appeared at noeuthanasia.org.au.

Source: NRLC News