Monday, August 31, 2009

Overheard

Albert Mohler on frozen human embryos:
The "disposition decision" related to these frozen human embryos represents one of the most significant, if neglected, moral crises of our age. This crisis is entirely the result of our own technologies and we as a society bear responsibility for this moral crisis. As it now stands, we face the specter of untold thousands of frozen human embryos who will meet their demise largely out of sight and out of mind.

Life Links 8/31/09

Ross Douthat compares Senator Kennedy with his sister Eunice, who also recently passed away.
What the siblings shared — in addition to the grace, rare among Kennedys, of a ripe old age and a peaceful death — was a passionate liberalism and an abiding Roman Catholic faith. These two commitments were intertwined: Ted Kennedy’s tireless efforts on issues like health care, education and immigration were explicitly rooted in Catholic social teaching, and so was his sister’s lifelong labor on behalf of the physically and mentally impaired.

What separated them was abortion.


I wish Frank Schaeffer would please explain why he’s so “appalled” by abortion but thinks it should be legal? What’s so appalling about abortion?

Schaeffer also notes his opinion that Roe should be overturned so decisions about the legality of abortion could be handed back to state legislatures.


Amanda Marcotte provides probably the worst “argument” for why government funds wouldn’t be used to pay for abortions under current versions of health care reform legislation: Because she said so.
There's two separate claims and one implication that this hysterical wingnut screaming at a town hall is making, and all are wrong. First, that the health care bill will include funding for abortion. This is wrong, as I've already stated. The second claim is that abortion is not health care. This is also wrong. The implication is therefore that we shouldn't fund abortions under universal health care, and this is also wrong.
She seems to believe that because she said something previously, that it is therefore automatically true and she doesn’t need to provide any evidence to refute FactCheck.org’s analysis or the Time’s analysis.


Abortionist LeRoy Carhart gave Action3News a tour of his abortion facility.


The Kansas City Star has an article about Scott Roeder, abortionist George Tiller’s killer, and his religious background. He’s a Messianic Jew.

Friday, August 28, 2009

Life Links 8/28/09

Father Raymond de Souza has an interesting piece in the National Catholic Register thinking about how today's American political scene might have different had Senator Ted Kennedy held onto his prolife beliefs.
Kennedy’s family legacy, his impregnable position in Massachusetts (he won more than 60% of the vote the year after Chappaquiddick) and his national prominence rendered him immune from the pressures other politicians had to face. He could always choose his own path. Had he chosen to remain economically liberal but culturally conservative, he would have prevented the Democratic Party from embracing the orthodoxy of the unlimited abortion license. Had he remained pro-life the Democratic Party would have had to make place for other pro-life politicians. Had he remained pro-life many others — Bill Clinton, Al Gore, Jesse Jackson — would not have abandoned their pro-life positions as the price to be paid for national ambition.


Geron has announced why their human embryonic stem cell clinical trial was put on hold by the FDA. Some research showed cysts at the injury sites.
But in a prepared statement Thursday, Geron said the hold resulted from the discovery of cysts in some animals given the cells. Although the cysts had appeared in some earlier animal studies, they appeared with "a higher frequency" in more recent animals tests, the company said.

Despite the finding, however, Geron said the cysts were "non-proliferative, confined to the injury site and had no adverse effects on the animals."


Some of abortionist LeRoy Carhart's former employee have shared information about clinic conditions with the Omaha World-Herald.
Two of the women said they routinely started IVs at Carhart's clinic though they weren't registered nurses or certified licensed practical nurses, as required in Nebraska. One was fired from the clinic in June, while the other was laid off this month. There is no indication the women lost their jobs because of their alleged involvement in starting the IVs.

A third former employee, who was fired about six years ago, said she frequently administered medication intravenously although she wasn't a certified LPN. That's the minimum requirement for the procedure, according to Marla Augustine, a spokeswoman for the Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services, the regulatory agency for medical services.....

Another of the former workers said she saw dried blood on an instrument laid out for a procedure.

A fourth former employee said she was concerned for the safety of the patients because she sometimes saw unsanitary conditions while she worked there. She was laid off from the clinic this month.

Three of the women have felony drug convictions. One was convicted after she was let go from the clinic. The two others had the convictions on their records before they were hired.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

"50% Off Abortions with Student I.D."


According a San Francisco Chronicle blog, that's how one hospital in China is advertising their services. Apparently, the above ad reads as follows:
Students are our future, but when something happens to them, who will help and protect them? Chongqing Huaxi Women's Hospital has started Students Care Month, where those students who come to get an abortion can get 50% off if they show their student ids. Abortion surgeries are the most advanced in the world, won't stretch (your womb), won't hurt, it's quick, and you can do what you want afterward, it won't affect your studies or your work.
Students are our future? Uhh... what about the children in their wombs? Who will help and protect them?

Life Links 8/27/09

Edward Kennedy in 1971 via Rod Dreher’s Crunchy Con blog:
"While the deep concern of a woman bearing an unwanted child merits consideration and sympathy, it is my personal feeling that the legalization of abortion on demand is not in accordance with the value which our civilization places on human life. Wanted or unwanted, I believe that human life, even at its earliest stages, has certain rights which must be recognized -- the right to be born, the right to love, the right to grow old.....

I share the confidence of those who feel that America is willing to care for its unwanted as well as wanted children, protecting particularly those who cannot protect themselves. i also share the opinions of those who do not accept abortion as a response to our society's problems -- an inadequate welfare system, unsatisfactory job training programs, and insufficient financial support for all its citizens.

When history looks back to this era it should recognize this generation as one which cared about human beings enough to halt the practice of war, to provide a decent living for every family, and to fulfill its responsibility to its children from the very moment of conception."


A Washington man named Donald Hertz has been indicted after allegedly making a threat against abortionist Warren Hern and his family.
The threat to his family came June 23, three weeks after Tiller was shot to death on May 31 while handing out bulletins inside his church.

"We received an anonymous call saying there were two Vietnam veterans coming from Spanish Fork, Utah, to Boulder to hurt my family," Hern said.


Today, the Wall Street Journal has two stories discussing abortion in health care. One is an editorial by BeliefNet’s Steven Waldman who claims neither side is being 100% truthful and another article which discusses the debate.


Yesterday, the LA Times had an article about the fight between Troy Newman and Randall Terry over the Operation Rescue name.

Speaking of Randall Terry, he recently got thrown out of a town hall meeting. There’s a video of the incident at the Huffington Post. In my opinion, it doesn’t reflect well on Terry. It appears obvious that he wanted to get kicked out and his method of communication (yelling and calling Howard Dean a “Baby Killer”) isn’t something that's going to change anyone’s mind on health care reform. After being kicked out, he got what he really wanted: interviews with media and publicity.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Life Links 8/25/09

FactCheck.org has called out President Obama's fabrications about whether public funds would pay for abortions under current health care reform measures. Some excerpts:
As for other types of abortions, the Capps amendment leaves it to the secretary of Health and Human Services to decide whether or not they will be covered. It says, "Nothing in this Act shall be construed as preventing the public health insurance option from providing" abortion services that would not be legal for Medicaid coverage......

As for other types of abortions, the Capps amendment leaves it to the secretary of Health and Human Services to decide whether or not they will be covered. It says, "Nothing in this Act shall be construed as preventing the public health insurance option from providing" abortion services that would not be legal for Medicaid coverage.


An editorial in yesterday's Washington Times also focused on Obama's misleading statements on abortion and health care reform legislation.


National Right to Life has set up a web page to inform the public about Congressman Tim Ryan and his abandoning of the prolife movement.

National Right to Life's Legislative Director Douglas Johnson has also left some comments at a guest post by Congressman Ryan at Dan Gilgoff's God & Country blog where Ryan falsely claims the Capps Amendment "prohibit(s) public funds from paying for abortions."


The China Daily reports that a young pregnant woman committed suicide by jumping off a bridge after the father wouldn't accept responsibility for the child and asked her to have an abortion.


Ann at Feministing notes an Alan Guttmacher Institute report which found the FDA's approval of the abortion drug RU-486 (also known as mifepristone) hasn't done much to increase the number of abortion providers, much to her dismay.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Life Links 8/24/09

Time has an article on President Obama's lack of truth-telling when it comes to abortion and health care reform.
But this last statement, while technically correct, does not tell the whole story. The health-care reform proposed by House Democrats, if enacted, would in fact mark a significant change in the federal government's role in the financing of abortions.....

The member dues, or premiums, to pay for expanded abortion coverage would be segregated from the federal tax dollars by keeping the money in separate internal accounts. The problem is that all those who sign up for the public option would have to pay into the account for abortion coverage, an amount "not less than $1 per month," according to the legislation. So in effect, anyone who wanted to sign up for the public option, a federally funded and administered program, would find themselves paying for abortion coverage. "You are spreading the cost of the procedure over a public plan," explains Stupak. Under the legislation, the executive branch would have to make a determination that abortion is a basic medical service for the service to be provided, something that the Obama Administration is expected to do.....

In the meantime, (Democratic Congressman Bart) Stupak says that Obama's statements during recent public events signal one of two things: either he does not fully understand the current House bill, which Stupak maintains has the effect of publicly funding abortion, or "if he is aware of it, and he is making these statements, then he is misleading people."


A man in Nebraska has been convicted of first-degree sexual assault and felony theft after raping a 14-year-old girl and then stealing a painting of the Virgin Mary to pay for her abortion because the child was evidence of his crime. For some reason (maybe because she was too far along), the abortion "wasn't possible."


Prosecutors in South Korea want Hwang Woo-Suk to be sentenced to four years in jail for his role in faking stem cell and human cloning results.

Friday, August 21, 2009

Life Links 8/21/09

South Dakota's informed consent law has been upheld in part. From the AP:
U.S. District Judge Karen Schreier's decision Thursday ends a lawsuit that Planned Parenthood Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota filed in response to a 2005 informed consent law that required several disclosures to women seeking an abortion.

She sided with the state in ruling that doctors must make the biological disclosure "that the abortion will terminate the life of a whole, separate, unique, living human being."

But Schreier said doctors can provide more information than the language in the statute, including that the term can be used in a biological sense and not ideological.

Schreier ruled in favor of Planned Parenthood by concluding that pregnant women do not need to be told abortion increases the likelihood of suicide or that they have an existing relationship with the fetus.

Both sides claimed victory.
There's a little more information on the judge's reasoning in this article at the Argus-Leader.


According to the Omaha World-Herald, abortionist LeRoy Carhart recently laid off 4 of his ten staff members because of “the recent decrease in patient numbers and income.”


Doctors in India have injected a man's own bone marrow stem cells into his brain in the hopes that they will help treat his Parkinson's symptoms.
While the doctors who performed the transplant said that they will monitor the patient for the next 18 months before terming it a ‘success’, Jain said the transplant has helped him regain his voice.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

"We will care for any newborn baby"

I wish my church would make the same kind promise as Peach Tree Presbyterian's Vic Wentz:
"I make a promise to you now and I don't want you to keep this a secret," the pastor pronounced, "the Peachtree Presbyterian Church will care for any newborn baby you bring to this church.

"We will be the family to find a home for that child, and there's no limit on this. You can tell your friends, you can tell your family, you can tell the whole world ..."
You can download and view Rev. Wentz's sermon entitled, "Ethics of Life" online here (the sermon starts about 30 minutes into the worship service). Besides giving a pro-life message, Rev. Wentz also shares a personal experience he had with abortion while he was a youth pastor in California about 46 minutes in.

HT: Joe Carter

Life Links 8/20/09

First Things’ Keith Pavlischek writes about common ground, the Obama administration and reducing the number of abortions.
The problem, of course, is that anyone who has been paying attention knows full well that Obama and his crew are not interested in reducing the number of abortions. How do we know this? We know it because Obama and crew keep telling us that they are not interested in reducing the number of abortions. Sooner or later you would think these moderate and progressive Evangelicals would get the message.


Reality TV star Kourtney Kardashian tells People that she’s pregnant and considered getting an abortion before choosing life.
"I looked online, and I was sitting on the bed hysterically crying, reading these stories of people who felt so guilty from having an abortion," she recalls. "I was reading these things of how many people are traumatized by it afterwards."

After scouring the Internet, Kardashian says she started to realize that an abortion wasn't an option for her. "I was just sitting there crying, thinking, 'I can't do that,' " she says. "And I felt in my body, this is meant to be. God does things for a reason, and I just felt like it was the right thing that was happening in my life."


Oklahoma will fight to keep their prolife laws including their ultrasound law.
Judge Robertson did not rule on whether the law, which rolled together five separate anti-abortion measures, violated constitutional protections of privacy and freedom of speech.

Charlie Price, a spokesman for Attorney General W.A. Drew Edmondson, said Wednesday that an appeal would be filed with the State Supreme Court. The state will argue that the law does not violate the single-subject rule, because all its parts are germane to abortion, Mr. Price said.

“Abortion isn’t always pretty.”

Actually, it’s never pretty.

Here’s one for the “Those images of aborted fetuses are fake” or “Those images of aborted fetuses are disgusting” response file.

At the Abortioneers blog, one abortion clinic worker discusses her excitement to work in pathology (examining the remains of aborted children) and her thoughts on pro-choicers who don’t like graphic photos.
Anti-choicers hold up posters of what I see in pathology. Even though their photos are larger than life, I'm not bothered by them. But I know so many pro-choicers who are, and honestly, this rubs me the wrong way sometimes. On the one hand, I know fierce pro-choice advocates who would never watch open-heart surgery on the Discovery Channel, so why would they really want to see this other aspect of surgery? On the other hand, my stubborn brain wonders why they must yell at the protesters, "That's disgusting! Why would I want to see that!?" Because I'm pretty sure that's exactly what the antis are going for. They're all about discomfort and the wrong kind of "humanity." Even if you're not as comfortable around fetuses as I am, why advertise that the protesters' techniques might be working, on some level? Abortion isn't always pretty. I'm one of the few (I say that not self-righteously--sometimes, I wonder if I should force myself to be a little bit uncomfortable.) who is able to counsel AND to assist the doctor in the OR. The less glamorous side of choice is not for everyone, but freedom and an amazing clinic staff and empowered clients are beautiful.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Sarah Kliff's Abortion Viewing

In the last couple of days, Newsweek's Sarah Kliff has been writing up a storm about abortion, including her profile of Nebraska abortionist LeRoy Carhart, a piece noting Esquire's error in claiming Warren Hern is the last abortionist willing to provide late-term abortion and a piece on her experience viewing an abortion in Carhart's clinic.

While reading Kliff's piece on viewing an abortion, I was left wondering: "Why didn't she witness a late-term abortion?"

That was the focus on her other articles - late-term abortions and the individuals who perform them - so why didn't she witness a late-term abortion since that was her subject matter. She briefly touches on the issue:
I knew that I'd most likely be watching a first-trimester procedure; while Carhart does offer late-term abortions, the majority of his patients, and the majority of abortion patients nationwide, are early in pregnancy.
Yeah? So? You're not writing about the majority of abortion or abortion providers. You're writing about late-term abortion.

I wonder if Carhart wouldn't allow her the opportunity to view a late term abortion. Did Kliff not want to see a late-term abortion? Or did all the late-term patients refuse?

I can imagine that a description of him removing limbs piece by piece (an arm here, a leg there) probably wouldn't have gone over so well and probably wouldn't have left Kliff feeling like she had no physical difficulties viewing an abortion.

Also of note, in Kliff's piece about Esquire's error, she chides them for their lack of accuracy regarding Hern's claims that he's the last late-term abortionist.
Accuracy always matters in journalism, and never more so than when writing about such a sensitive and controversial subject.
Yet, her piece on Carhart is filled with inaccuracies which appear to be based solely on what Carhart has told her, not unlike Esquire lazily failing to factcheck Hern. For example,
Past viability, no doctor will terminate a pregnancy without a compelling reason....

Talking to the women reminded him of the patients he had seen as a medical student, in the days before Roe: women whose botched abortions, anywhere from the first to the third trimester, left them with perforated uteruses, intestines protruding from the vagina, or untreatable pelvic infections. The way Carhart remembers it, it was a good week for the emergency room if only five women died.....
Ummm...Carhart's 67 which means the earliest he was in medical school was 1965 and he probably wasn't seeing emergency room patients right away.

When Straight Dope was asked about abortion deaths before Roe they found this statistic regarding abortion in 1965 from pro-choice researcher Christoper Tietze:
"A statistic perhaps more typical of the pre-Roe era was reported in a 1969 Scientific American article cowritten by Christopher Tietze, a senior fellow with the Population Council: "The National Center for Health Statistics listed 235 deaths from abortion in 1965. Total mortality from illegal abortions was undoubtedly larger than that figure, but in all likelihood it was under 1,000."
Yet somehow we're supposed to believe that Carhart's lone hospital was seeing at least 250 women die a year from illegal abortions.

Then there's her description of partial-birth abortion:
The bans, which state legislatures began to pass in the mid-1990s, generally targeted a procedure called intact dilation and extraction, in which the dead fetus is removed intact after the skull is crushed. It is a rare procedure, used in 2,200 of the 1.3 million abortions performed in 2000, and only in cases where doctors believed it was the best option for minimizing risks to a woman's health, according to the Guttmacher Institute.
Except the fetus is partially removed before the skull is crushed and AGI's 2,200 number is basically the lowest PBA estimate available.

The real lesson here should be to not trust late-term abortionists like Hern and Carhart. Anyone who is willing to dismember viable unborn children on a regular basis is not someone who has any remorse about lying to supportive reporters on a regular basis.

Life Links 8/19/09

The FDA has put an indefinite hold on Geron's embryonic stem cell clinical trial.


In First Things, Richard Stith, discusses how abortion may not be as liberating as some pro-choicers think.
If she says she is pro-life so that he thinks abortion is not an option for her, he might decide to keep her from getting pregnant by leaving her for someone more open to abortion, a woman who doesn’t insist on his using a condom. That is, the presence in the sexual marketplace of women willing to have an abortion reduces an individual woman’s bargaining power. As a result, in order not to lose her guy, she may be pressured into doing precisely what she doesn’t want to do: have unprotected sex, then an unwanted pregnancy, then the abortion she had all along been trying to avoid. Even though her abortion in this case is not literally forced, it would be, in an important sense, imposed on her. And, far from alleviating her overall situation, it would merely return her to the same sexual pressures, made worse by a new assurance to her boyfriend that she is willing to take care of a ­pregnancy.
Stith also notes how legalized abortion may have lowered sympathies directed towards women who choose to give birth.
But once continuing a pregnancy to birth is the result neither of passion nor of luck but only of her deliberate choice, sympathy weakens. After all, the pregnant woman can avoid all her problems by choosing abortion. So if she decides to take those difficulties on, she must think she can handle them.

Birth itself may be followed by blame rather than support. Since only the mother has the right to decide whether to let the child be born, the father may easily conclude that she bears sole responsibility for caring for the child. The baby is her fault......

The deepest tragedy may be that there is no way out. By granting to the pregnant woman an unrestrained choice over who will be born, we make her alone to blame for how she exercises her power. Nothing can alter the solidarity-shattering impact of the abortion option.



An Oklahoma district court judge has overturned Oklahoma's ultrasound law because of an Oklahoma constitutional requirement that laws only deal with one subject.
In his ruling, Robertson referenced several difference provisions in the bill. It also allows doctors and other health care providers to refuse to take part in an abortion for moral and religious reasons; requires certain signs to be placed in clinics where abortions are performed; mandates that federal guidelines be followed in the use of the abortion pill RU-486; and prohibits wrongful life lawsuits arguing a disabled child would have been better off aborted.

Special Assistant Attorney General Teresa Collett said all of the provisions relate "to the practices that have arisen related to the taking of human life."


An 18-year-old named Alex Santana has been arrested for stabbing his 28-year-old girlfriend because she refused to have an abortion. According to police, she may not have even been pregnant.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Life Links 8/18/09

Wesley Smith writes regarding a story that a woman in Tunisia is apparently pregnant with 12 children after using IVF.
IVF has brought joy to millions of parents. But it has also fueled the hedonism front of the coup de culture. Moreover, because the reproductive industry, feminists, bioethicists, and others in the anything goes crowd resist any reasonable regulation, it has also opened the door to treating nascent human life as mere ore taken from a mine, set the Brave New World project on its trajectory, led to women becoming so many paid brood mares, caused the death, disability, and serious illness of egg donors and sellers, and transformed reproduction into a mercantile transaction in which people believe they have the right not only to a baby, but to the baby–or many babies–they want.


Debra Hafner is mad about the Capps Amendment because it doesn't force all insurance companies to cover abortion. Here's a portion of a letter written by the Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice, signed by pro-choice religious leader and sent to members of Congress:
If coverage for abortion is eliminated from health care reform, the poor and communities of color will bear the consequences.
"The consequences" clearly meaning "more children." And apparently having more children isn't good for the future of families and communities.
Already, a low-income woman is four times as likely to have an unintended pregnancy and five times as likely to have an unintended birth as her higher income counterpart. Lack of access to abortion services perpetuates inequality and compromises the future of women, their families and their communities.
So poor women and women of color have the future of their families compromised if they can't have abortions paid for with tax-dollars. I think just the opposite is true. In communities where abortions are paid for with tax dollars, my guess is there is likely to a greater breakdown in families and communities.
In this religiously pluralistic nation, our health care system should be inclusive and respectful of diverse religious beliefs and decisions regarding childbearing.
And by "inclusive" and "respectful of diverse religious beliefs," RCRC means, "Take the ultra-liberal position of making abortions part of a public health care plan and pay no attention to the position of those who oppose this."


Here's an update on the medical license of South Dakota's only abortion clinic.
Lawyers for the Department of Health say a formal notice that Planned Parenthood is violating the state's informed consent law does not mean the abortion provider will lose its license anytime soon.

Planned Parenthood last week asked U.S. District Judge Karen Schreier for a temporary restraining order, which would prevent the state from suspending its license until the judge rules on a lawsuit concerning disclosure forms they provide to pregnant women. They said they could lose their license as soon as Aug. 22.

In a response filed Monday, state lawyers say that if the Department of Health takes administrative action Aug. 22, it only will set in motion the steps required to suspend Planned Parenthood's license.

Monday, August 17, 2009

No Human Being Should Be This Fast

Proud of you for making a decision?

Shakesville has an open thread where commenters can share their abortion experiences with a fellow commenter who's planning on having an abortion.

The final part of one comment has me scratching my head: "I am so sorry you have to make this decision. And I'm so proud of you for making one."

Life Links 8/17/09

Newsweek profiles Leroy Carhart, whom they dub “The Abortion Evangelist” because of his attempts to train others to perform late term abortions.

It appears Carhart trusts fewer women than abortionist Warren Hern.
Carhart has a few firm lines; he won't, for example, do elective abortions past 24 weeks, because the fetus is likely viable. "It just makes sense to me," says Carhart. "After a certain point in time, the fetus is viable and we have to look at it differently than if it were not viable." And at 24 weeks, many studies show a fetus's chance of survival to be above 50 percent. Any earlier and the survival rate is lower; at 22 weeks it's less than 10 percent. But Carhart admits that such clear guidelines rarely present themselves. "There are times when abortion is the right answer," he says. "There are times when abortion is not the right answer. I hope I get it right."
So Carhart “trusts women” as long as they aren’t carrying a child who is likely to survive outside the womb and want to abort for elective reasons. So it's not some absolute. I wonder why he keeps acting like it is.

Writer Sarah Kliff describes Carhart shack of a clinic as “an unimpressive two-story building that shares a gravel parking lot with a shut-down gas station.”


A 25-year-old woman in South Africa is on trial after abandoning her son after a botched late term abortion.
The woman was linked to the dead infant after her Sedgefield Court neighbours in Joubert Park saw her allegedly use medication to abort her six-month-old infant in 2005.

She allegedly gave birth to a baby boy, who was born alive on July 28, 2005 and she allegedly dumped him in a nearby rubbish bin before she fled.

Neighbours found the infant in a bin and called the police. The baby later died.


Catholic Culture’s Diogenes writes about Vermont’s lack of an unborn victims of violence law after a woman’s unborn twins were killed in a car accident.
So if we begin with the feminist axiom that abortion must be legal, in order to protect the rights of women, then the rights of some women like Patricia Blair must be ignored. And if her unborn twins were both female, the feminist axiom didn't do much to protect their rights either.

Friday, August 14, 2009

Life Links 8/14/09

Unrestricted access to abortions paid for by the national government? That's not enough!

So declares Canadian columnist Andre Picard, who claims women in Quebec "need fewer barriers to abortion, not more" in response to a proposed regulation which would require abortion clinics to meet the same requirements as other non-hospitable facilities which provide surgeries (the horror!!!!).

From Picard's column, the only other way access to abortion in Quebec seems to be "restricted" is that women "in rural areas of the country often have to travel hundreds of kilometres for care." Maybe Picard thinks every tiny town in the Great White North should be staffed by a government-employed abortionist. Then women in Quebec would really have "access" to abortion.

What's truly amazing about abotion proponents is that many of them believe abortion should be part of an essential health care package yet they don't want abortion treated like other procedures and abortionists to be treated like other health care workers. They want abortion to be completely funded by the government but they don't want the government to impose any standards or regulations.

HT: ProWomanProLife


The cast of the Family Guy recently did a table read of the much-discussed abortion episode which FOX decided not to air.
Most of the episode dealt with matriarch Lois (played by Borstein) deciding to become a surrogate mother for her infertile friend — against Peter's wishes. After her friend is killed in a car crash, the Griffins are left with the difficult decision of what to do about the pregnancy.

At one point, Peter watches an anti-abortion video, which proclaims several people would be alive if abortion wasn't legal, including a fourth Stooge, the guy who would have killed Adolf Hitler and Osama bin Laden's America-loving brother, who could have prevented 9/11.


Karen Sypher, the woman who accused Rick Pitino of rape and is accused of trying to extort $10 million from him, is now claiming to the New York Post that Pitino "forced her to have an abortion." It also appears my initial reaction was wrong. Sypher was pregnant, did have an abortion and showed clinic documents to the Post.
Sypher insists Pitino forced her to have an abortion, even though she felt it was murder.

"This is all I have of the baby," she said yesterday, holding up the ultrasound picture taken the day of the procedure.

"I'll never forget. I wanted to have the baby, but Rick said my children would all be in concrete. I lived in fear for five years," she said.

"I prayed to God, 'Please, I don't want this.' When they called my name [at the clinic], I stood up."

But paperwork Sypher filled out at the clinic, which she provided to The Post, contradicts her account.

She checked off boxes indicating she felt "confident" and "strong" that she was doing the right thing.

Sypher also checked off responses indicating she did not think abortion was akin to murder and that she would not regret having the procedure.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

A Planned Parenthood in South Dakota is Breaking the Law

The South Dakota Department of Health has threatened to suspend the license of Planned Parenthood after they failed to disclose information required by South Dakota's informed consent law to a woman seeking abortions.
Specifically, during the May inspection at the Sioux Falls clinic, the state says Planned Parenthood did not tell a pregnant woman:

- That "the abortion will terminate the life of a whole, separate, unique, living human being."

- That she "has an existing relationship with that unborn human being," which is protected by law, and that the abortion will terminate the relationship and those rights.

- About "all known medical risks of the procedure and statistically significant risk factors ... including ... depression and related psychological distress (and) increased risk of suicide ideation and suicide."

- The correct address of the Department of Health Web site.

- The required information at least 24 hours prior to the abortion.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Rick Pitino Admits to Affair and Giving Money for an Abortion

Rick Pitino, head coach of Louisville men's basketball team, apparently paid for the abortion of a woman he had sex with in 2003. The woman, Karen Sypher, is currently charged with lying to the FBI and trying to extort $10 million dollars from Pitino.
About two weeks after meeting Sypher at the restaurant, Pitino told police that she called, told him she was pregnant and that he had to be the father. Pitino told her when they met again that he had five children and she had four, and that he didn't know what he wanted to do, according to the report by Sgt. Andy Abbott, commander of the sex-offense unit.

Pitino said Sypher told him she was going to have an abortion but didn't have health insurance, so he gave her $3,000 for the procedure done in Cincinnati, according to the report.....

Pitino is Catholic and brings along close friend and spiritual adviser, the Rev. Edward Bradley — a priest in Henderson, Ky. — on many team trips. Bradley often prays with the team before games and is a fixture near the Louisville bench.
I'm not seeing any evidence which shows that Sypher was actually pregnant and had an abortion. I wonder where the $3,000 amount came from since early abortions typically cost around $400. I wouldn't be at all surprised if Sypher made up the pregnancy as a means of extracting money from Pitino and attempting to get more leverage on him in her extortion attempts.


A Planned Parenthood affiliate in Washington has been caught with their hand in the cookie jar. They overbilled Medicaid $629,143 over the span of 3 years.
Planned Parenthood of the Inland Northwest required unnecessary office visits by its poorest patients, a practice that led to excessive payments from the taxpayer-financed Medicaid program, according to a recent audit.

The audit also uncovered troubling billing procedures and problems with unauthorized staff prescribing and dispensing birth control pills, said Doug Porter, Washington’s Medicaid director.
It appears that instead of giving women birth control for 6-months or a year, Planned Parenthood would have the women come in every month, have the secretary hand them their pills and then charge Medicaid for that visit.


The Center for Reproductive Rights is suing to get rid of Oklahoma's ultrasound law.
Stephanie Toti, an attorney for the New York-based Center for Reproductive Rights, said after the hearing that the anti-abortion law was “the most extreme law in the country.”

During oral arguments, she told District Judge Vicki Robertson that the law does not describe in sufficient detail what a physician or other medical professional is supposed to say to a woman about the ultrasound image.....

Special Assistant Attorney General Teresa Collett urged the judge to uphold the statute, saying it clearly states what a doctor should tell a woman about the ultrasound image. They include the dimensions of the fetus as well as the presence of cardiac activity and arms, legs and internal organs, according to the statute’s text.

“There is no lack of clarity in this,” Collett said.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Life Links 8/11/09

Canadian prolife advocate David MacDonald shares the story of a young woman he met while protesting at an abortion clinic.
Afterwards she wanted to die. She cut herself with razor blades all over her body and ended up in a psych ward. The walls were blank but she saw children running all around on the walls and she was in incredible turmoil. When she was released she had tattoos engraved all over her body, some she did herself. She lifted up the front of her shirt and showed us a tattoo over her uterus of a thorn thicket. She said it represented her now inhospitable uterus. She said “It’s a big lie what this world says, it’s a real baby, and I will never be able to replace my lost baby, and I may not be able to have kids anymore because of complications.” She continued “I don’t know how to get over it.”
Read the whole thing to find out why this girl was at the abortion clinic that day.


Eunice Kennedy Shriver, founder of the Special Olympics, died this morning. According to USA Today's obituary,
Unlike other members of her Democratic clan, she remained opposed to legalized abortion and was a longtime supporter of the group Feminists for Life.


Kansas Governor Mark Parkinson and the Kansas Department for Health and Environment have completely cut funding for an abortion alternatives fund after the KDHE was asked to make a 2% budget reduction.


A new law in Quebec which requires health clinic which perform surgeries to have operating rooms could close 3 abortion clinics. Unfortunately, Montreal's health agency is working on making sure they can find the resources to cover the 100 "interventions" a week which take place at these clinics.
What we have already guaranteed is that of the 100 interventions that we need per week, we have about 72 to 75 already covered," said the agency's president, David Levine, adding that he's confident the government will find the resources to accommodate the other 25.


R. Creigh Deeds, the Democratic candidate for governor in Virginia, is hoping that he'll be helped in the polls by highlighting his opponent's history of sponsoring prolife legislation.

Monday, August 10, 2009

Trust women? Apparently, not all women.

Speaking of the long Esquire article on Warren Hern, one item that stuck out to me was Hern’s discussion of his decision not to perform an abortion on a woman who was around 35 weeks pregnant. The pregnancy resulted from rape.
(Reporter:)You wanted to cozy up to the next question but there's no time, so you just blurt it out: What are your limits? When would you tell a woman no?

(Hern:)There's no specific answer to that. I'm in the process of turning down somebody who's going to be thirty-four, thirty-five weeks, with an important reason for doing abortion. I'm not going to do it......

(Reporter:) This woman you refused to treat, what was her reason?

(Hern:) She was raped. I'm very sympathetic, but I can't risk my medical license for someone who just didn't get around to doing anything about it. I've done some cases over thirty-six weeks, but very few.

(Reporter:) For what cause?

(Hern:) For some catastrophic problems.

(Reporter:) Like what?

(Hern:) Oh, anencephaly or lack of kidneys, you know. Lack of a brain.
I’m struck because I remember the slogan “Trust Women” used often by pro-choicers to cudgel prolifers during the days after George Tiller was murdered.

Isn’t Hern refusing to trust a woman when he refuses to perform an abortion on her? If “Trust Women” is some absolute when it comes to pregnancy and abortion, then aren’t abortionists who refuse to do certain abortions, which they are capable of doing, failing to trust women. Hern knows that his medical license isn’t going to be taken away for performing this abortion. He knows the “health” exception Doe v. Bolton gives him plenty of leeway to perform abortions on women in their third trimester. He just isn’t comfortable performing 35 week abortions on completely healthy fetuses. He’s comfortable doing them for fetal abnormalities but women who “just didn’t get around to doing anything about it” until 35 weeks apparently aren’t worthy of Hern's trust.

If you’re going to use an absolute slogan like “trust women” to defend abortion, you should be willing to "trust" the decision-making abilities of all women, including the woman who’s 35 weeks pregnant and wants an abortion because she was raped. It should also include woman who wants a 35 week abortion because she says she's not ready to be a mother. Or women who want to have abortions because their unborn children are females.

Life Links 8/10/09

Frank Beckwith notes the concerns of Charles Lane in the Washington Post surrounding the health care reform legislation’s end-of-life counseling. Beckwith writes,
Supporters of H.R. 3200 claim that its end of life counseling provision, section 1233, is merely voluntary for the patient. But a closer look shows that section 1233 includes conditions and financial incentives for physicians and other health care providers that create a setting in which an elderly patient’s decision to appropriate this option is likely to be less than voluntary.


MercyMe, a Christian rock band, cancelled a performance after their tour bus collided with a car and killed a passenger, the pregnant driver and her unborn child.


Abortion clinic founder Merle Hoffman, in a rambling piece regarding how pro-choicers should respond to sex-selection abortion, shares a story of a Russian woman who came into their clinic for her 36th abortion.
Some believe that the choice of abortion is wrong in all places for all time. But attitudes about abortion are situational, historic and geographic.

My work to open Choices East, a satellite of Choices Women’s Medical Center in New York, in the former Soviet Union was inspired by a 35-year-old woman who came to our medical center for her 36th abortion. Like so many other Russian √©migr√© women living in New York, she was violently opposed to using birth control because her Russian doctor taught her that "the Pill" was far more dangerous than repeat abortions. This misinformation benefited Russian physicians because they could earn extra money doing abortions on women in their homes to supplement their three dollars a month salary. Other forms of contraception were unavailable for all practical purposes. For these women, the "issue" of abortion posed no questions of morality, ethics, or women's rights versus fetal life.



Jill at Feministe has a truly odd post regarding Esquire’s profile of abortionist Warren Hern. After quoting a diatribe by Hern at length in which Hern calls the prolife movement a “fascist movement” and blames George Tiller’s murder on the “hate-speech” of prolifers, she writes about how dangerous it is to compare people to Nazis,
But one thing that Maddow points out is that the rhetoric used even by supposedly “mainstream” groups is intented to incite violence, even as they claim to abhor it. Nazi comparisons are the easy example — I think it’s one thing to say that someone’s views or beliefs are so extreme that they are reminiscent of popular views in Nazi Germany, or even to point out the similiarities between certain regressive, frighteningly controlling policies and the polices of fascist states. But accusations of Nazism, or being just like Hitler, evokes a particular response. It crosses a line to start arguing that a Democratic leader is basically a Nazi, or to say that healthcare is a “Hitler-like policy being heralded like a Hitler-like logo” and “Obama is asking citizens to rat each other out, just like Hitler did” (those are Rush Limbaugh quotes, for the record; apparently Hitler was extremely concerned with universal health care). As Maddow says, “He’s just like Hitler. And you know what that means he deserves, right?”
The argument seems to go something like this: prolifers shouldn’t compare abortion to genocide or used Hitler/Nazi comparisons because they could incite violence.

But in the next two paragraphs of the Esquire piece from which Jill quoted Hern, the writer briefly defends Bill O’Reilly's right to free speech and then Hern responds by saying this:
He's full of (expletive). This is not a debate, it's a civil war. And the other people are using bullets and bombs. I think O'Reilly is a fascist, and he would fit right in in Nazi Germany as far as I'm concerned.
According to Jill, Hern is correct to call prolifers “fascists” and deplore their use of hot rhetoric and saying Bill O’Reilly would have “fit right in in Nazi Germany” is not comment worthy but if prolifers claim that abortion providers kill babies and slaughter innocents, we’re over the line. Double standard anyone???

Friday, August 07, 2009

Life Links 8/7/09

Penny Young Nance writes in the Baltimore Sun about how President Obama really just isn't that into prolifers.
The battles on Capitol Hill over Sonia Sotomayor and health care have convinced me that pro-life Americans should take a cue from a popular chick flick. A hit movie newly out on DVD recently proclaims a shocking truth to women who make excuses for the bad behavior of men they date. That fact is: If he lies, cheats and treats you disrespectfully, "he's just not that into you...."

How could he, you say? My fellow pro-lifers, grab a tissue and listen up. The truth is, he's not scared to get into a relationship, he hasn't lost your number, and he is not simply busy. Noooo. He is in bed with someone else. That's right! President Obama loves the abortion lobby. He takes their money and their calls, but more importantly, he does their bidding.
HT: Americans United for Life blog


Speaking of prolifers willing to make excuses for President Obama, what planet is Jim Wallis living on? He thinks "there is growing agreement from both pro-life and pro-choice that health-care reform should not include funding for abortion, but should be abortion-neutral." Yeah, that's why the pro-choice members of House and Senate committees keep voting down amendments which attempt to exclude abortion from health care reform. Ironically, Wallis' post is entitled "Truth-telling and responsibility in health care." At First Things, Keith Pavlischeck has more.


Representative Tim Ryan can't help himself from misleading people regarding his vote to allow tax-funded abortions in Washington, D.C.
Lastly, Ms. Day accused me of supporting a bill that allows public funding of abortion. That accusation is deliberately misleading. What I voted for was a large appropriations bill, a portion of which allowed Washington, D.C., residents to determine for themselves how they want to spend their own locally-generated, non-federal tax revenue. The bill did not tell Washington, D.C., residents what to do with their own money, and no federal funds were ever at stake.
Well, actually Representative Ryan, you voted against an amendment to that large appropriations bill which would have prevented the District of Columbia from using tax funds to pay for abortions. Note how weakly he defends himself from Day's accurate accusation that he "support(ed) a bill that allows public funding of abortion." He says the bill didn't force D.C. to fund abortion. Did Day ever say it did? He says federal funds weren't at stake. Did Day ever say they were? He arguing as if Day accused him of voting for a bill that "would force D.C. to use federal funds to pay for abortions."


Here's a chilling quote from a Detroit News article on embryonic stem cell research:
Robyn Kovacs of White Lake Township, who conceived a child through in-vitro fertilization, hopes it happens quickly so she can donate her 10 leftover frozen embryos. "They don't need to be sitting in a freezer," she said. "They should be doing something."
Apparently, they should be doing something like being killed and having their cells harvested for biomedical research.

Thursday, August 06, 2009

Sotomayor Confirmed

The U.S. Senate voted 68-31 to confirm Judge Sotomayor to the Supreme Court of the United States today. Nine Republicans voted for her. Ted Kennedy wasn't present for the vote.

Wednesday, August 05, 2009

Life Links 8/5/09

An Associated Press article's title notes that government "insurance would allow coverage for abortion."


The latest statistics on abortion are out in Michigan. Abortions increased by 5.2%. The percentage of abortions on black women rose to 45.4%. The number of abortions performed after 12 weeks also jumped up. One woman died in Michigan as a result of abortion.

Also of note, 98.1% of women paid for abortion by themselves. Only 1.8% of abortions were paid for by insurance. Makes you wonder where the Alan Guttmacher and the Kaiser Family Foundation got their statistics (87% and 46% respectively) used in the AP article above regarding abortion coverage in employer insurance health care plans.


Esquire has a long piece on abortionist Warren Hern which inaccurately describes him as the "only (abortionist) left" to specialize "in late abortions."


A federal judge has upheld the city of Oakland’s abortion bubble ordinance which prohibits abortion protestors from coming within 8 feet of women going into and out of abortion clinics. The judge also noted that efforts by clinic escorts to stand in front of Rev. Walter Hoye and block his sign “violate the law.”


Ramesh Ponnuru takes down another one of William Saletan increasingly lazy columns, this one on Tim Ryan, National Right to Life and how Saletan thinks NRLC doesn’t like Ryan because he favors contraception.

I think the best part is when Saletan accuses National Right to Life of changing its priorities in 2007 because their scorecards didn’t have a lot of abortion-specific legislation on them.

Hmmmm.... I wonder why? Maybe it’s because there weren’t any votes on abortion specific legislation. And why’s that? Oh yeah, it’s because the Democrats took control of the House in 2007 and prevented votes on this type of legislation. So no, National Right to Life didn’t change, Congressional leadership did. This could also be a reason why Ryan’s preference for prolife policies also began to change.

Tuesday, August 04, 2009

Life Links 8/4/09

John McCormack has a piece in the Weekly Standard on Congressman Tim Ryan and his slide away from being prolife. It includes this telling part of an interview between the Weekly Standard and Ryan:

TWS: When do you believe life begins?

REP. RYAN: That answer's above my pay grade. That's for God to determine.

TWS: So you're not saying first trimester, second trimester, conception?

REP. RYAN: I don't know. I mean, that's God. God knows when it begins, and when it ends, and all that other stuff.
If Ryan doesn't know when life begins, then on what does he base his supposed "prolife" position?


Illinois' parental notification laws goes into effect today after 14 years of being in court limbo. Abortionists still have a 90-day grace period where they won't be prosecuted for breaking the law. According to the Naperville Sun, Planned Parenthood's throughout Illinois will begin following the law today. Here's a quote that stands out for its cognitive dissonance:
Rev. Emmy Lou Belcher of DuPage Unitarian Universalist Church, said she always thinks it's better if a girl's parents are involved in her personal life. But in cases where incest and abuse is involved, she said, the law could make it "most difficult for the weakest and frail of our society, and that's never a goal of religion."


The Christian Broadcasting Network has a portion of an interview with Joshua DuBois, head of President Obama's "Faith Based and Neighborhood Partnerships," regarding abortion reduction/common ground.
We’ve been meeting with groups on both sides of this spectrum and in the middle as well and learning their best ideas about that common ground space in the middle. Now we’re bringing all that information back. We’re going to give it to the President. He’s going to think through and talk about where he wants to go forward in that area so we’ve concluded the set of meetings and now we’re just kind of compiling it and getting ready for the President and then he will eventually talk about where he thinks we should be going.”

Monday, August 03, 2009

Life Links 8/3/09

John McCormack provides a little more detail into what happened with abortion amendment in the House Energy and Commerce Committee.
Instead of the Stupak-Pitts amendment, the committee passed an amendment that is being billed by some Democrats as a "common ground" measure on abortion. The amendment--sponsored by Lois Capps (D-Calif.), whose National Right to Life Committee vote-scorecard is 0 for 74--would allow the "public option" to provide coverage for elective abortions and would allow federally subsidized private plans to provide abortion coverage as well. How exactly could this be construed as "common ground"? Congress isn't requiring the public option to cover abortion--merely allowing it.


Last night ABC premiered Defying Gravity, a new show about astronauts on a 6-year mission to visit multiple planets. There was an abortion sub-plot where during flashbacks we discover that two of the main characters had a drunken hook-up and one of them became pregnant. Even though abortion is illegal in 2052 (or in the flashback’s case 2047), the pregnant astronaut candidate is encouraged to have an abortion by one of her fellow astronaut candidates so she can continue her training. Five years later in the present, she doesn’t appear to have a child and is hearing baby cries aboard the ship no one else hears. Here are some thoughts from Todd VanDerWerff at the AV Club:
The show seems to be doing a pretty competent job of arguing against abortion at various points, but it always ends up defaulting to using it glibly. We’re supposed to know one character needs more of a conscience, for example, because she so blithely dismisses it, and the haunted spaceship uses abortion (without spoiling too much) as a scare tactic. Having science fiction tackle political issues is always fun, but it doesn’t feel like anyone on Defying Gravity has thought out too much how they feel about abortion beyond using it as a prop within the show’s universe. (It also doesn’t help that one of the show’s major points against abortion involves destroying rabbit embryos, something even the most hardened anti-abortion person wouldn’t even bat an eye over doing.)


Nashville Scene blogger Jeff Woods comments on Congressman Bart Gordon’s vote switch on excluding abortion from health care reform.
"I misunderstood it the first time," Gordon claimed, according to The Hill.

Ha! That's funny, congressman. Here's what really happened: The first time, Gordon thought he could vote "yes" and the amendment still would lose. In this way, abortion is covered but Gordon doesn't have to go on record as voting for it--a win-win for the courageous congressman. As a Republican Lite Party member in good standing, it's part of the game he plays to trick constituents. Too bad it didn't work out and, after a little strong-arming by Waxman, Gordon actually had to admit he's pro-choice.