Friday, December 8, 2017

Planned Parenthood May Finally Be Held Accountable for Selling Aborted Baby Parts

It’s taken two years, multiple undercover exposés, a few anti-First Amendment lawsuits and a whole lot of congressional arm-twisting, but the FBI has finally launched a criminal investigation into abortion giant Planned Parenthood. (Because apparently, catching multiple Planned Parenthood executives on tape laughing about the illegal sale of body parts harvested from aborted healthy babies isn’t enough to spur an immediate and public look-see.)

According to Fox News, the FBI has finally requested the Senate Judiciary Committee turn over un-redacted statements made by Planned Parenthood execs and other abortion industry workers that were collected during a congressional investigation into the industry’s trade in baby organs – an investigation that started back in 2015. The DOJ announced this week their request is part of an official investigation into the abortion giant and other abortion providers.

“At this point, the records are intended for investigative use only—we understand that a resolution from the Senate may be required if the Department were to use any of the unredacted materials in a formal legal proceeding, such as a grand jury,” said Justice Department Assistant Attorney General for Legislative Affairs Stephen Boyd.

Just to clarify, once more for those who’ve been out of the loop: it’s not that killing a baby, harvesting its organs and selling them to science labs is illegal. It’s just that under U.S. law, you can’t make more than a certain amount of money – excuse me, “remuneration” – while doing it. That’s the rub. The FBI’s not investigating the killing of the baby or the harvesting of their parts. Just the sale of them. Which, by the way, Planned Parenthood has completely denied doing. (Not the killing, just the selling. They do the killing quite happily, and they’re vocal about it.)

The move was praised by pro-life leaders like Live Action’s Lila Rose as, if nothing else, a step in the right direction.

Of course, just because Planned Parenthood is under investigation for harvesting baby body parts and selling them off to the highest bidder, that doesn’t mean our GOP-led Congress has announced any plans to cut off the half a billion taxpayer dollars the organization reaps each year through Medicaid reimbursements and government payouts. . . . Read More

Tags: Planned Parenthood, May Finally Be Held Accountable, for Selling Aborted Baby Parts To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the Greater Fitchburg For Life. Thanks!

Here’s How to Have a Productive Conversation About Abortion With Someone

by Tim Brahm: Imagine you’re out hiking with a friend in the beautiful (and fictional) country of Florin, as depicted in The Princess Bride. You’re both clueless tourists but you’ve casually looked at some maps and you think you can handle yourselves. As you’re walking by a ravine, your friend points to a group of trees and says, “Hey, I think if we wander down the ravine and into those trees, we’ll save some time!” You agree, but start to get worried as you notice that what started out as a beautiful forest has turned into a terrifying swamp. Ten minutes later, you are both killed by Rodents of Unusual Size.

Now imagine an alternative scenario. Unlike your tourist friend, you’re a native to Florin, so you know about the parts of the country to avoid, such as the Fire Swamp. When your clueless friend suggests wandering into a dangerous area, you casually redirect him, and you both survive.

A conversation about abortion is surprisingly similar. There are plenty of useful topics to discuss, and plenty of tangents that, while they won’t cause you to get eaten, are really not a good use of time.

Some unhelpful tangents come up regularly because they’re fairly natural responses to some of the arguments I regularly use, and I have learned from experience that some of them should just always be avoided. This post is about a simple but effective way to avoid one in particular.

I am very fond of thought-experiments. I find so much success with them that most of my arguments wind up being backed up by some thought-experiment or another. For instance, if I’m arguing for the personhood of the unborn, I regularly offer the Zoo Shooting:

Imagine we’re hanging out at the zoo. We’re having a great time in front of the elephant exhibit, when a crazy gunman runs in and starts shooting. He gets six shots off before he is tackled by security. The first bullet kills the world’s unluckiest cockroach, the second bullet kills a squirrel, the third bullet kills the elephant, and the other three bullets kill three humans: a newborn, a toddler, and an adult woman. Here’s the question: how many of these killings should be considered murder? If the thing that makes you a person is having any level of sentience, then that would mean it’s just as wrong to kill a squirrel as it is to kill a human, because they’re both sentient. If the thing that makes you a person is having a more advanced ability like self-awareness, then that would mean it isn’t wrong to kill the newborn, because it isn’t self-aware yet. What do you think?

This poses a serious problem to most pro-choice views about personhood because they leave the pro-choice person with only three options:
  • Bite the bullet and say that killing a squirrel is just as bad as killing a born human;
  • Bite the bullet and say that it isn’t wrong to kill a newborn human; or
  • Abandon the argument.
But sometimes the pro-choice person instead tries to direct our conversation into the unproductive hell of debating the validity of intuition by asking, “Well, how do you really know that it’s wrong to kill newborns?” Sometimes they’re just being stubborn, but other times they’re honestly just doing their best to externally process and understand their own views.

I used to think it was necessary to engage this “How do you know?” question, given that I was the one who brought up a thought-experiment based on something I think I know via intuition. I’ve attempted that conversation many times, and it has been sometimes interesting, but my conclusion is that it is a poor use of time. It is ultimately a tangent that is almost always best avoided because we usually spend too much time in philosophical weeds that don’t ultimately result in the pro-choice person being convinced. It’s like going for a half-court shot in basketball. Sure, you might hit one once in a while, but it’s always smarter to try a different shot. [Tweet that!]

The key to avoiding this Fire Swamp of a tangent is to ask them to be consistent instead of claiming to have knowledge. I absolutely believe that I have knowledge that it’s wrong to kill newborns, but it’s too complicated to defend that, and, in this case, it’s unnecessary. If they ask, “Well, how do you really know that it’s wrong to kill newborns?”, I just respond by saying, “That’s a complicated question. I’m just asking you to be consistent. Do you really think it isn’t wrong to kill newborns?” They almost always admit that they don’t think that, even if they can’t give a bulletproof defense for why.

At a recent outreach, I spent around two hours talking with an inquisitive student I’ll call Carl. I presented the Zoo Shooting to him and he responded:

Carl: Well, how do we really know? Some people would say that it is just as wrong to kill a squirrel as it is to kill a human.

Tim: Yeah, but would you say that?

Carl: Nahhh.

Tim: Then that pro-choice view isn’t an option for you. If you aren’t willing to bite that bullet, you can’t say that sentience is the thing that makes us equal.

Carl: Yeah, that makes sense.

Ten minutes later we were talking about bodily rights arguments and I asked him if he believed a pregnant woman should have the legal right to take Thalidomide to intentionally deform her baby:

Tim: If she has the right to do anything she wants with anything inside her body, then shouldn’t she have the right to intentionally deform her baby?

Carl: Well, who knows, some people might say she should have that right.

Tim: Yeah, but would you?

Carl: Nahhh.

Tim: Then you can’t justify abortion by saying that a woman can do anything she wants with anything inside her body.

I could have followed Carl down the tangents of whether we really “know” those things, but it would have been completely unnecessary. Carl wasn’t actually open to biting those bullets, but he had a moment of curiosity that could have derailed our conversation if I hadn’t kept us on track.

Around an hour later, Carl changed his mind about abortion, and that would not have happened if I’d let him get distracted by an interesting, but ultimately irrelevant question. Your time in a conversation about abortion is a precious, limited resource, so spend it wisely.

Tags: Tim Brahm, How to Have, Productive Conversation, About Abortion, With Someone, To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the Greater Fitchburg For Life. Thanks!

Thursday, December 7, 2017

Patricia Heaton: Abortion Doesn’t “Eliminate” Down Syndrome, “It’s Just Killing Everybody That Has It”

Emmy award winning actress Patricia Heaton also happens to be a passionate pro-life advocate

Known for starring in “The Middle” and “Everybody Loves Raymond,” Heaton recently wrote a column for America Magazine about the discriminatory targeting of unborn babies with Down syndrome for abortion.

Heaton, who is active on Twitter, said the impetus for her writing was a CBS News tweet in August about Iceland nearly eliminating Down syndrome.

“I was taken aback when I read the CBS News tweet that stated, ‘Iceland is on pace to virtually eliminate Down syndrome through abortion,’” she remembered. “But as I tweeted on Aug. 14, the country was not, in fact, eliminating Down syndrome. They were just killing everyone who has it.”

That report shocked the nation with its exposure of the discriminatory abortion trend. According to the report, nearly 100 percent of unborn babies who test positive for Down syndrome are aborted in Iceland. The rate in France was 77 percent in 2015, 90 percent in the United Kingdom and 67 percent in the United States between 1995 and 2011, according to CBS. Some put the rate as high as 90 percent in the United States, but it is difficult to determine the exact number because the U.S. government does not keep detailed statistics about abortion. . . . Read More

Tags: Patricia Heaton, Abortion, Doesn’t
Eliminate, Down Syndrome,
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Pro-Abortion Sen Al Franken Won’t Resign for Weeks, Blamed Trump Instead

Sen. Al Franken (D-MN) announced on Thursday morning on the Senate floor that he will be resigning from the Senate “in the coming weeks.” Franken said that some of the allegations were “simply not true” and that he remembered others “very differently.”

Franken’s resignation was first reported by CNN shortly before Franken’s speech. On Wednesday evening, Minnesota Public Radio said that Franken would resign, but Franken denied this at the time.

Immediately after announcing his resignation, Franken immediately pivoted to saying that it was a shame that he was resigning while President Donald Trump, who himself was accused of sexual misconduct, was still the president.

Franken said that his decision to resign was not based around him, but rather for the people of Minnesota.

Notably, Franken did not issue any apologies to any of his accusers during his speech, and implied that many of them were lying. He did not provide a timeline for his resignation, saying only “weeks.” His replacement will be appointed by Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton and will serve until 2018. . . . Read More

Tags: Pro-Abortion, Sen Al Franken, Won’t Resign for Weeks, Blamed Trump Instead To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the Greater Fitchburg For Life. Thanks!

Wednesday, December 6, 2017

Helping Women Doesn’t Mean Advocating Abortion. Quite the Opposite!

This November, member nations of the “Group of 7” (G-7) met in Italy to discuss current global health issues and challenges. To the outrage of abortion activists, the G-7 members landed on language that omits abortion terms under the “Gender Perspective in Health Policies and Rights for Women, Children and Adolescents” section of the communique.

Instead, the language states that G-7 nations—made up of the U.S., Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan and the U.K.—would pay special attention to the health of mothers, newborns and children with evidence-based interventions to address issues like mortality and violence.

As the Center for Family and Human Rights (C-Fam) reports:

“The U.S. proposed compromise language during negotiations asking to qualify the term ‘sexual and reproductive health’ by reference to UN agreements that explicitly deny abortion is an international right. In the end, it was negotiators from Canada and Europe who wanted no mention at all of ‘sexual and reproductive health,’ preferring deletion to qualifying the term to exclude abortion rights.

“In international agreements, its (the term’s) opaqueness is used to conceal controversial content such as abortion. This undermines U.S. Law and Foreign Policy by channeling U.S. taxpayer funds to abortion groups and giving them political backing through multilateral aid. The term is also controversial because of attempts to create an international human right to abortion through customary international law.”

This is likely to upset proponents of “She Decides”, a movement created in response to U.S. President Donald Trump’s reinstatement of the Mexico City Policy earlier this year, which influenced the policies proposed by the U.S. at the G-7 meeting.

Most recently halted by former President Barack Obama, but reinstated under President Trump, the Mexico City Policy ensures, “U.S. taxpayer dollars do not fund organizations or programs that support or participate in the management of a program of coercive abortion or involuntary sterilization.”

“She Decides” was started by Lilianne Ploumen, the Dutch Minister of Foreign Trade and International Development. On its website, the group asks visitors to sign a misinformed manifesto—one that curiously fails to point out that abortion mandates such as China’s “One-Child Policy,” not a lack of abortion access—lead directly to coerced abortions and the loss of choice.

Contrary to what “She Decides” and others claim about the devastating effects to women, the Mexico City Policy does not reduce the money the U.S. invests in global health; it simply redistributes where the money will go—which includes the numerous women’s health centers that give comprehensive care without performing abortions.

Again in contrast to much of the hype, the majority of Americans agree with this approach. According to a Marist Poll earlier this year, 83 percent of Americans oppose using tax dollars to support abortion in other countries.

What’s more, the G-7 communique also addresses those issues by stating that the nations commit to address sexual and gender-based violence such as child and forced marriage, female genital mutilation, human trafficking and exploitation.

Removing abortion language from the communique does not hamper women’s access to safe healthcare. And the Mexico City Policy certainly does not either. In fact, policies like these protect women by funding centers who provide more comprehensive care—which often includes post-abortion counseling to help women heal from the real and harmful effects of abortions, which groups like “She Decides” continue to prop up as beneficial for women.  . . . read more and view original links

Tags: Helping Women, Doesn’t Mean, Advocating Abortion, Quite the Opposite! To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the Greater Fitchburg For Life. Thanks!

Archbishop Slams “Pro-Choice Catholics,” Calls on Priests to Preach More Pro-Life Homilies

Archbishop Joseph F. Naumann of Kansas City
Catholic Archbishop Joseph F. Naumann of Kansas City soon will become an even more influential pro-life leader in the United States.

Already a strong advocate for life in his current position, Naumann is slated to become the next leader of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ Pro-Life Activities Committee; U.S. Catholic bishops elected him to the position earlier this fall.

In an interview with Catholic World Report Monday, Naumann explained why the sanctity of human life from conception to natural death is a priority in his ministry and why other priests should make it a priority, too.

“… if the Church is silent on the destruction of life, we’re being negligent, and leaving our young people vulnerable to making this tragic decision,” Naumann said.

When he preaches about abortion, Naumann said he tries to be sensitive that people in the pews may have had experiences with abortion. He said he often mentions post-abortion healing programs such as Project Rachel.

“I say to such people that they know better than anyone else what a tragedy abortion is, and ask them to pray for me in my work that I can help others to know about the pain they’re experiencing,” he said.

He urged priests to talk about abortion more often because of its massive destruction of unborn children and families. He said more needs to be done to teach young people about the sanctity of human life.

“I’d also like to say to our priests: we can’t fail to talk to our people about these real sins that affect the lives of our people. If we talk about sins they don’t commit, of what good is that?” Naumann challenged. . . . Read More

Tags: Archbishop Slams, Pro-Choice Catholics, Calls on Priests, Preach More Pro-Life Homilies To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the Greater Fitchburg For Life. Thanks!

Tuesday, December 5, 2017

FCC Chairman Blasts Twitter for Censoring Tweets from Pro-Life Groups

The Chairman of the Federal Communications Commission has excoriated the social media platform Twitter for censoring pro-life posts and other social conservative viewpoints. FCC Chairman Ajit Pai says that Twitter is employing a “double standard” in blocking conservative content while leaving liberal messaging untouched.

Pai pointed to a recent incident in which Twitter took down a pro-life advertisement from Tennessee Congresswoman Marsha Blackburn. Blackburn had posted an advertisement for the launch of her campaign for the U.S. Senate. Representative Blackburn’s ad touted her leadership in exposing Planned Parenthood’s marketing and sale of the body parts of aborted preborn children.

Congresswoman Blackburn had chaired a special legislative committee which investigated the actions of Planned Parenthood employees and contractors in the trafficking of fetal organs and fetal tissue. The advertisement on Twitter showed Blackburn saying that she “fought Planned Parenthood and we stopped the sale of baby body parts, thank God.”

Twitter yanked the ad, saying that it included an “inflammatory statement that is likely to evoke a strong negative reaction,” and that it had “higher standards for their content.” Twitter officials said they would restore the ad if Blackburn pulled the reference to Planned Parenthood. After a huge outcry from the social media community, Twitter reinstated the ad, saying that it had reevaluated the ad “in the context of the entire message.”

Chairman Pai says that providers like Twitter are making political value judgements about what content users see. “The company appears to have a double standard when it comes to suspending or de-verifying conservative users’ accounts as opposed to those of liberal users. Providers like Twitter routinely block or discriminate against conduct they don’t like.” . . . . Read More

Tags: FCC Chairman, Blasts Twitter,  Censoring Tweets, Pro-Life Groups To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the Greater Fitchburg For Life. Thanks!

11 States Tell Supreme Court: We Have a Right to Protect Unborn Babies From Abortion

Attorneys general in 11 states urged the U.S. Supreme Court on Monday to vacate a lower court’s decision to force the government to help facilitate an abortion for an illegal immigrant minor.

The teen, “Jane Doe,” aborted her unborn baby in October after a federal appeals court ruled in her favor. However, the federal government and the 11 states want the high court to consider the case because of the precedent it could set for future situations.

Earlier this fall, the ACLU won a victory for the abortion industry when a federal appeals court ruled that the government must help facilitate an abortion for the teen who was staying in a Texas government shelter. Barely 24 hours after the ruling, the teen had her unborn baby aborted.

Later, the Trump administration accused the ACLU of deceiving the government about when the teen’s abortion would take place. It asked the Supreme Court to consider the case, as well as disciplinary actions against the ACLU attorneys.

The Dallas Morning News reports Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton filed a brief Monday, along with attorneys general in 10 other states, supporting the federal government’s case.

“No court has ever before recognized such broad rights for unlawfully present aliens with virtually no connections to the country,” Paxton wrote in the brief. “Under the reasoning of the courts below, there will be no meaningful limit on the constitutional rights an unlawfully present alien can invoke simply by attempting to enter this country.”

Also signing the brief were the state attorneys general from Arkansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Michigan, Missouri, Nebraska, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Carolina and West Virginia, according to the report. . . . Read more

Tags: 11 States, Tell Supreme Court, We Have a Right, to Protect Unborn Babies, From Abortion To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the Greater Fitchburg For Life. Thanks!

Friday, December 1, 2017

Planned Parenthood Complains It Costs Too Much Money to Get Women an OBGYN After Botched Abortions

Talk about a conduit. Whenever the abortion industry feels the heat, it knows it can plant long, sympathetic stories in the local media. There will be a paragraph or two (sometimes) explaining why whatever it is Planned Parenthood et al. are whining about is good public policy. But the thrust of the story always is, “Woe is poor little old Planned Parenthood.”

Which brings us to a sympathy bouquet of flowers masking as a news story that appeared in the Springfield (Mo.) News-Leader.

Will Schmitt’s lead tells the reader what the “problem” is:

Paying for physicians to be on call at all times at local clinics could cost Planned Parenthood a pretty penny.
What is Schmitt talking about? Some frivolous requirement with no real purpose? Hardly.

Unlike other state health departments, Missouri’s health department takes seriously its responsibilities to pass rules to enforce state laws.

NRL News Today has written a passel of stories about Missouri’s omnibus SB 5 law passed during a special session of the legislature last summer. As is almost always the case, the state passes pro-life legislation, Planned Parenthood challenges it in court.

In SB 5 Planned Parenthood has, so to speak, a target-rich environment. Planned Parenthood (through Schmitt) in this instance is bemoaning a regulation [referred to as the “Complications Plan Requirement”] that mandates when an abortion “provider” performs chemical abortions, they have a written agreement with an obstetrician-gynecologist who has admitting privileges at a hospital in case of emergencies.

In its lawsuit, Planned Parenthood claims the regulation “is the latest in a series of medically unnecessary requirements imposed by the State, which will, without basis, limit women’s access to an extremely safe procedure using medications alone.”

So the meme is chemical (aka RU-486) abortions are safe, safe, safe. Thus in the upside down world of Planned Parenthood mandating written contracts with OB/GYN’s to be available 24/7 to treat women when they are injured by chemical abortions “will create greater burdens to women seeking abortions,” according to Jesse Lawder, spokesman for Planned Parenthood of the St. Louis Region and Southwest Missouri. “We are very concerned about what SB5 is doing to women seeking access to care.”

Randall Williams, the director of the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services defended the regulations, Schmitt reported.

“Ensuring the safety of all patients is always our Department’s foremost concern. Therefore, the objective of our complication plan regulations is protecting the health and safety of patients by reemphasizing the importance of the physician-patient relationship.”
. . . Read More
Tags: Planned Parenthood,Complains It Costs Too Much Money, to Get Women, an OBGYN  After Botched Abortion To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the Greater Fitchburg For Life. Thanks!

Shocking New York City Figures Show More Than 1 in 3 Babies are Killed in Abortions

One of every three babies is aborted in New York City – a third of all the new lives conceived in the Five Boroughs. Seems newsworthy, but don’t expect to hear that number from the networks.

The day after Thanksgiving, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) released its most recent Abortion Surveillance report, revealing U.S. abortion data for the year of 2014. For the pro-life movement, 2014 symbolizes the year after the conviction of abortionist Kermit Gosnell and the year before the Center for Medical Progress released its Planned Parenthood tapes.

According to the CDC, a “total of 652,639 abortions were reported” for 2014 by 47 states, New York City and the District of Columbia. That number happily represented a 2% decrease in abortion from last year’s 2013 report. Like last year, three states – California, Maryland and New Hampshire – refused to participate.

But there wasn’t just a decrease in abortion, which the CDC links to contraception use. There was also an increase in birth. The CDC reported 3,988,076 U.S. births for 2014, “up 1% from 2013.”

But other news was more somber.

As in 2013, the highest abortion rate, in comparison to the birth rate, came from the most populated U.S. city. In 2014, New York City boasted the highest abortion rate – 34.8 abortions for every 1,000 women of reproductive age (15-44) – and the highest abortion ratio – 575 abortions for every 1,000 live births.

With a total of 67,620 abortions, that means the city had approximately 117,600 births, according to CDC numbers. New York State’s Department of Health reported 117,099 births. That translates into a total of 184,719 babies (born and aborted) for the city in 2014.

That means more than one in three babies are aborted in New York City, and its abortion rate is more than 1/2 of its birth rate.

No other state or area listed had an abortion ratio that came close. After New York City, Florida followed with an abortion ratio of 328 abortions for every 1,000 births.

Other numbers went up. The abortion rate for African-Americans/Blacks increased from 35.6% in 2013 to 36% in 2014. To put that in perspective, African-Americans represent 13.3% of the U.S. population. . . . Read More

Tags: Shocking, New York City, Figures Show, More Than 1 in 3 Babies, Killed in Abortions To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the Greater Fitchburg For Life. Thanks!

Thursday, November 30, 2017

Africans Fight Europeans at UN Over Family and Unborn

It may be the Africans who save us in the end. In recent UN debates, the African delegation and Saint Lucia stood up to the rapaciously radical European states over parent's rights and "reproductive health," the phrase the left uses to promote abortion.

by Stefano Gennarini, J.D. (C-FAM): Last week the small island state of Saint Lucia and African nations threw a wrench into the machinations of the UN system when they added amendments recognizing parental guidance in sex education in three resolutions about children.

We should celebrate this success. But the Africans and their allies have yet to reverse the direction toward which the UN machinery is churning. Despite their best efforts, they could not sanitize the resolutions entirely. All three resolutions also call for the provision of “sexual and reproductive health” to children, defined as young as ten years old. They do so without any caveat or qualification, including allowance for parental authority.

When looking at the broader context of the vote on the parental guidance amendment, we realize just how much the sexual revolution is transforming UN social policy.

Two principal objectives of powerful Western donor states in these resolutions were to legitimize efforts of the UN system to promote “comprehensive sexuality education” and efforts to provide Asian and African girls with contraception and abortion. All of this without parental guidance or consent. UN agencies and their partners have this kind of programming at the ready as part of their efforts to implement the Sustainable Development Goals, and they are simply waiting on UN resolutions to give them normative backing to streamline this into their policies and programs.

The Africans and their allies were able to undermine efforts to legitimize “comprehensive sexuality education” in UN policy at the normative level. But the parental amendment may not be sufficient to derail UN programming on comprehensive sexuality education, as donor states seemed to suggest in statements last week.

Moreover, the amendment applied only to sex education, and not the overall focus of the UN system to mainstream sexual and reproductive health in UN policy and programing.

Merely mentioning “sexual and reproductive health” in resolutions involving children would have been unthinkable until recently.

The entire African Group made a reservation on the Sustainable Development Goals when it transpired that UN agencies were trying to make access to abortion and contraception by children without parental consent a measure of success of the 2030 Agenda. The relentlessness of powerful Western donors and UN agencies appears to have had some effect.

Opposition to this terminology has been eroded in recent years by negotiating fatigue. Abortion groups and the UN system worked to obscure how the terms normally include abortion by definition. And delegates don’t always understand how certain terms in UN resolutions give political and financial support to groups that perform and promote abortion, no matter the intent of governments.

In resolutions they sponsor, European and Latin American are not interested in qualifying “sexual and reproductive health” by reference to previous UN agreements that exclude a right to abortion and other controversial new rights about sexual autonomy. In fact, they fight it tooth and nail, so vested are they in promoting abortion.

By contrast, an African-backed resolution qualified the term “sexual and reproductive health” to exclude abortion rights, and another sponsored by Indonesia and the Philippines did not employ the term at all.

Perhaps these recent developments are a harbinger of more good things to come from the African continent.

Tags: Stefano Gennarini, Africans Fight Europeans at UN, Over Family, Unborn To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the Greater Fitchburg For Life. Thanks!

San Jose’s Christmas Trees Under Fire

by Bill Donohue: Every year since the 1950s, San Jose has had a proud record of honoring Christmas with a grand display of Christmas trees. This year, however, a controversy has arisen over some trees.

San Jose’s Plaza de Cesar Chavez is the site of approximately 500 Christmas trees, an event organized by a non-profit organization, Christmas in the Park. Last year, it drew over 650,000 visitors. In addition to the display of Christmas trees, there are many Christmas-themed events for families. Unfortunately, some have politicized the annual celebration

This year there is a tree erected by the Satanic Temple, and one that celebrates Colin Kaepernick kneeling on the field. There is also a section of the park set aside for LGBT activists: they placed a Barbie doll alongside an image of Bruce Jenner from the Olympics.

Offensive as these displays are, the origin of the problem can be traced to the event’s organizers. According to the ABC affiliate, KGO, they invited schools, businesses and non-profit organizations to “bring awareness to issues or causes they care about.”

While the motives may be noble, invitations to promote issues and causes that people care about ineluctably dilute the meaning of Christmas.

Would the organizers honor Black History Month by asking the public to participate in celebratory events that “bring awareness to issues or causes they care about”? Would this not ensure an attenuation of the respect due African-American achievements? Worse, it may even beckon white supremacists to promote their agenda.

There are those who, unlike the well-meaning people of San Jose, intentionally create faux competition with Christmas so as to neuter its essence.

For example, Freedom From Religion Foundation, a militant atheist anti-Christian group from Madison, Wisconsin, released a statement saying it would provide “free secular displays to erect in public forums.”

Why? “One reason to counter religious displays on public property is to ensure your point is represented at this time of the year.” In other words, the purpose is to “counter” Christmas displays. It is not an oversight that the atheists could care less about countering Hanukkah—it’s Christians they really hate.

City in the Park organizers need to get back to their roots, lest their goodwill be exploited by those with their own agenda. This event started in the 1950s with a nativity scene built by Don Lima in front of his family mortuary—it did not start with an invitation to promote any issue or cause that the public fancied.

There are plenty of opportunities to advance all sorts of political, economic, social, and cultural causes. They should not be held coterminously with Christmas celebrations.
William "Bill" Donohue is President of the Catholic League.

Tags: San Jose’s Christmas Trees, Under Fire, Bill Donohue, Catholic League To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the Greater Fitchburg For Life. Thanks!

Tuesday, November 28, 2017

Abortion Industry Could Face Criminal Charges For Selling Baby Parts: AG Sessions

Attorney General Jeff Sessions
Operation Rescue: Attorney General Jeff Sessions testified before the House Judiciary Committee on Tuesday and acknowledged that Planned Parenthood and others who may have participated in the illegal sale of aborted baby organs and tissue could be criminally charged once the FBI completes its investigation.

Rep. Trent Franks referenced a report published Monday by The Hill that the FBI had asked to view unredacted documents obtained by the Senate Judiciary Committee’s yearlong investigation into allegations that Planned Parenthood and others engaged in the illegal sale of aborted baby body parts. That investigation was initiated by undercover videos released in 2015 by the Center for Medical Progress that clearly show Planned Parenthood executives haggling to get top dollar for aborted baby parts.

The Senate Judiciary Committee and the House Select Investigative Panel on Infant Lives, which conducted a similar investigation, both referred Planned Parenthood organizations and several middle-man organ procurement companies to the Department of Justice for criminal investigation and prosecution.

Franks asked Sessions if any Senate investigation and subsequent referrals provided a sufficient basis to bring criminal charges on any “guilty party.”

Sessions responded, “Well, it depends on the substance of those Congressional findings, but they certainly provide a basis for starting an investigation and verifying the findings of the Congress, and could provide a basis for charges.”

Operation Rescue president Troy Newman, who is a founding board member of the Center for Medical Progress and served while the undercover videos were being filed and produced, welcomed the news.

“When Attorney General Sessions was confirmed, I pledged to stand ready to assist him with access to our research and documentation in prosecuting abortion abusers including Planned Parenthood. That offer still stands,” he said.

“After listening for two years to Planned Parenthood lie about their involvement and stonewall two Congressional investigations, I am now hopeful that an FBI investigation will result in charges against Planned Parenthood criminals and their accomplices who broke the law,” Newman continued. “Planned Parenthood tried to smear the video evidence as faked with a so-called forensic report that has been proven as phony as a three-dollar bill. Now we know the only thing that is fake is Planned Parenthood’s denials of wrongdoing.”

In June 2017, Newman wrote a letter to Attorney General Sessions asking for speedy action on the Congressional referrals.

“Needless to say, these allegations are very serious, and if true, are literally putting innocent lives in grave danger,” wrote Newman. “Because of that, I encourage you to pursue criminal investigations and prosecutions, if warranted, against the Planned Parenthood organizations, the organ procurement companies ... with all urgency in order to protect women and their babies from harm, and in the interest of justice.”

Planned Parenthood and the National Abortion Federation sued Newman and other CMP officials in 2015 to block the release of further videos. They successfully obtained a gag order that was upheld by the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, which prevented Newman and others from releasing any of the forbidden videos to law enforcement even if they obtained evidence of crimes.

Newman and his attorneys with the American Center for Law and Justice filed a petition with the Supreme Court challenging the gag order – a challenge that now takes on new urgency in light of the apparent ongoing FBI investigation.

A decision on whether the Supreme Court will hear Newman’s petition is expected before the end of the year.

Tags: Abortion Industry, Could Face, Criminal Charges, Selling Baby Parts, AG Sessions To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the Greater Fitchburg For Life. Thanks!

Court Orders Liberal Prof To Pay Hefty Fine For Violating Pro-Life Students’ Free Speech

by Dorothy Cummings McLean: A federal court has ruled that a Fresno State university professor must pay $17,000 in damages and undergo First Amendment training.

Gregory Thatcher, a professor of public health, violated the free speech rights of students belonging to the Fresno State Students of Life club when he erased their pro-life chalk messages and recruited his students to do the same. After hearing Fresno State Students for Life v. William Gregory Thatcher, a federal court issued an order that forbids Thatcher from interfering with the student group’s free expression.

The Fresno State Students for Life were represented by attorneys from Alliance Defending Freedom.

“No public university professor has the authority to silence any student speech he happens to find objectionable or to recruit other students to participate in his censorship,” said ADF legal counsel Travis Barham. “Like all government officials, professors have an obligation to respect the constitutionally protected free speech of students. Of all people, professors should be the first to encourage all students to participate in the marketplace of ideas rather than erase the speech of those with whom they differ. The professor’s actions here were wrong and flagrantly violated the First Amendment.”

In April, the Fresno State Students for Life received permission from their university to chalk positive, life-affirming messages on the sidewalks outside the campus library. The chalkings expressed support for pregnant and parenting students and described the development of unborn children. On May 2, after the students finished the project, Thatcher confronted them. He told them THAT they weren’t allowed to chalk the messages outside the library but had to confine them to a “free speech zone.” The free zone had, in fact, been eliminated almost two years earlier.

When club president Bernadette Tasy told the professor that the club had permission to chalk their communications outside the library, he said he would return to erase them. He then convinced at least seven students his 8 a.m. class to deface or remove the pro-life messages. When Thatcher himself returned, Tasy reminded him that she had permission for the project. Thatcher then deliberately began to rub out a message with his shoe, claiming he was exercising his own free speech rights: “You have permission to put (the chalk messages) down … I have permission to get rid of it.”

He also erroneously informed Tasy that “college campuses are not free speech areas.”

The Students for Life captured Thatcher’s violations of their freedom of speech and those of his recruited students on video.
According to the settlement, Thatcher will pay Tasy and another student, Jesus Herrara, $1,000 each as well as legal fees. The Alliance Defending Freedom will provide Thatcher with First Amendment training.

Students for Life of America president Kristan Hawkins welcomed the ruling and called the settlement “a victory for all students who have the same Constitutional rights as professors.”

“As our interactive map illustrates,” she wrote, “nationwide we are seeing incredible opposition to pro-life speech as our student leaders and volunteers speak for the defenseless, reach out to pregnant women, and educate on the violence of abortion. But as this case illustrates, we are not going to be silent, even if it takes going to court.”

Hawkins thanked the ADF and took the opportunity to plug the Students’ for Life Abortion=Violence campaign, which will take place on more than 90 campuses.

“Let this case put college administrations on notice that we expect students’ rights to be respected and that the free marketplace of ideas include college campuses,” she said.

When the lawsuit was first filed, Casey Mattox, director of the ADF Center for Academic Freedom, stated: “Today’s college students will be tomorrow’s legislators, judges, educators, and voters. That’s why it’s so important that university professors model the First Amendment values they are supposed to be teaching to students, and why it should disturb everyone that this Fresno State professor, like so many other university officials across the country, is communicating to a generation that the Constitution doesn’t matter.”

For his part, Thatcher has not expressed regret. According to The Fresno Bee, the professor said he “admitted absolutely no wrongdoing” and “did not have to pay a dime.” Apparently the damages imposed by the court were covered by Thatcher’s insurance company through the National Education Association.

Nevertheless, Kristan Hawkins observed that Dr. Thatcher has a lot to be sorry for.

Tags: Court Orders, Liberal Professor, To Pay Hefty Fine, For Violating, Pro-Life, Students’ Free Speech To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the Greater Fitchburg For Life. Thanks!

Monday, November 27, 2017

Protecting Pregnancy Centers

by Penna Dexter: The Left is attempting to force California pro-life pregnancy centers to promote abortion services they don’t offer and find immoral. These centers exist to help women facing unplanned pregnancies understand they have life-affirming alternatives to abortion. Crisis pregnancy centers help young women who are often afraid and sometimes facing outside pressure to abort. Most of these centers are operated by Christians who are motivated by their faith to affirm and protect the sanctity of human life.

Abortion activists are putting the squeeze on these centers by getting laws enacted that would dilute their message and deprive them of the right to operate according to their beliefs.

A California law, the Reproductive FACT Act, orders pregnancy resource centers to instruct women on how to obtain free or low-cost abortions through the state’s Medi-Cal program. FACT is an acronym for Freedom, Accountability, Comprehensive Care and Transparency. Ironically, enacting this law would deprive pregnancy centers of these very qualities.

The FACT law comes with draconian fines for centers that don’t comply. The law also forces non-medical pregnancy centers to post large and prominent disclosures, in up to 13 different languages, stating they are not medical — an attempt to undermine a pregnant woman’s confidence in them.

Courts have struck down similar laws in Texas, Maryland, and New York. A California superior court judge ruled that the law violates the “freedom of mind” protection in the state’s 1949 Declaration of Rights. But the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit disagreed and permitted the statute to stand.

Now, thanks to this split in circuit court decisions, the U.S. Supreme Court has agreed to take the case and will make the final call.

Requiring pro-life pregnancy centers to promote abortion violates their constitutional rights of conscience and free speech. The nation’s 400 pregnancy resource centers have helped countless women to choose life for their babies and the High Court now has the opportunity to affirm their right to do so.
Penna Dexter is a radio talk show host heard on numerous stations via the Point of View Network endorsed by Dr. Bill Smith, Editor, ARRA News Service

Tags: Penna Dexter, Viewpoints, Point of View, Protecting Pregnancy Centers To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the Greater Fitchburg For Life. Thanks!