Friday, March 30, 2007

Friday Niece Blogging

Dogs think little kids are great when they sit in their high chairs and spill food on the floor but I think a dog's opinion might begin to evolve when the kids begin use them jungle gyms.

Life Links 3/30/07

Dave G. at Race42008 discusses whether or not Fred Thompson has changed his position on whether first trimester abortions should be illegal or not. I think prolifers need to have some clarification on what his current position is before jumping on his boat.

The Center for American Progress highlights 2007 polls on embryonic stem cell research . None of the polls note that a human embryo has to be destroyed in order to obtain embryonic stem cells. Also of note, the page claims, "It's interesting to note that even Republicans in the CBS News poll said they approve of embryonic stem cell research by 54-36. On the stem cell research issue, Bush isn't even representing his own partisans, much less the rest of the public."

But the reality is that Bush approves of embryonic stem cell research. He's the first President to provide federal funding for human embryonic stem cell research. You could only prove Bush isn't representing his own partisans if you had a question which showed the majority of Republicans favored the expansion of federal funding to newer embryonic stem cell lines. Also note the rather high "Don't know/No Opinion" responses. A good portion of the public really doesn't know where they stand on this issue - most likely because the public in general doesn't know much about it.

A man from Missouri named Bill Bernhardt claims an adult stem cell procedure performed on him and his heart in Bangkok saved his life.

You just have love those proponents of human cloning for research. This from David Dietz , who is the founder of an organization in favor human cloning for research organization in Delaware.
S.B. 5 specifically outlaws the creation of human versions of Dolly the sheep. It does not outlaw the procedure known as somatic cell nuclear transplantation when, and only when, it is used for medical research and therapeutic purposes......

Do they have the courage of their convictions to publicly reveal their true intentions, or will they continue to obfuscate the facts with half-truths and misrepresentations and continue to use opposition to S.B. 5 as the scapegoat to cover up their true motives?
Unfortunately, Dietz doesn't have the courage of his convictions to admit that somatic cell nuclear transplantation is human cloning and the legislation he favors doesn't outlaw the creation of human clones, it outlaws them being implanted into a uterus.

Thursday, March 29, 2007

Life Links 3/29/07

A woman named Penny Thomas from Hawaii with Parkinson's disease traveled to China and received stem cells taken from a donor's retina. One of the doctors she's going to in the U.S. says,
"I can't believe she's been so active," Arrington said. "She's doing surprisingly well. She's reducing her medication and is still maintaining without any reoccurrence of the Parkinson's symptoms."

In the meantime, a Michigan State University student named Ryan Dinkgrave claims adult stem cell research is an "unproved" form of stem cell research. Another student responds.

It should also be noted that the MIRS/Rossman survey which Dingrave cites asked the following question:
"Missouri recently passed an amendment to their constitution dealing with stem cell research. Their amendment would allow scientists to conduct research on stem cells and establish strict reporting and oversight on any stem cell research in their state. If you had the opportunity, how would you vote on this issue, would you vote (ROTATE) for this amendment or against this amendment?"
And some have and will use this question to claim that 65% of the people in Michigan would favor overturning a law which doesn't restrict embryonic (notice how this word was left out of the question) stem cell research but merely prevents researchers from killing human embryos for research.

What an absolute joke.

A teen who used one of the drugs in an RU-486 abortion to abort her child (the child was born alive and eventually died) in the 25th week of pregnancy won't be charged with murder but has been charged with "illegally procuring an abortion, a felony that carries up to seven years in prison if convicted."

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Exposing Myths or Exposing Your Own Ignorance?

I came across this list of "Top 10 Anti-Choice Myths" by Tom Head at and thought some of you might enjoy it, especially the first myth and the answer to it.
1) "Human life begins at conception."
False. Human life actually begins prior to conception, because each sperm and egg cell is a living organism....
Don't you just love a myth-exposing expose filled with such utter nonsense?

And Tom Head isn't just some random pro-choice person either. According to his online bio, he's the secretary for Mississippi NOW and is an active member of the ACLU. The ACLU of Florida even posted this list on their website.

Again, the list claims that sperm and egg are living organisms and there isn't anyone at the ACLU of Florida headquarters who realizes how ridiculous it is to claim sperm and egg are living organisms. Did no one there take a basic human biology class in high school?

Head's list also has some great strawmen for him to take down. For example, copy and paste (with quotation marks) myths #4, #6, #10 into google.

Life Links 3/28/07

Charles Colson on what children have become.
Orenstein, however hesitantly, believed she had the right to have a child at any cost. Raper believed that she had the right not to have a child if she did not want one. Both children, different as their situations are, demonstrate the reality in our culture today: the tragic reality that children have become mere commodities to meet our needs, or, if they don't meet our needs, things to be discarded.

What does the New York Times Magazine's most recent mistake have to do with their error regarding the story about abortion in El Salvador? Mark Hemingway notices an interesting connection.

What happens when you can't find enough doctors to do abortions? In Britain, some people are trying to make it so nurses can perform abortions. The article probably has one of the most classic pro-choice quotes I've ever come across. Dr. Vincent Argent, "who heads the abortion unit at Addenbrooke's Hospital" and who has written an article entitled "How can abortion be made simpler for women," says,
""I would not say I am particularly pro choice and I am not particularly pro life. Every doctor has their own point of view.

"I think probably women should be able to make a choice about abortion."

Wouldn't that be like a prolifer saying, "I'm not particularly prolife or particularly pro-choice. I think probably abortion should be illegal because it intentionally takes the life of an innocent human being."

Cloning by any other name

The Scientist magazine is inviting individuals to participate in a discussion on human cloning.
In the June issue of The Scientist, we will be publishing a special feature that re-casts the scientific approach and public image for the process that has become known under several guises, including "stem cell cloning" "somatic cell nuclear transfer (SCNT)," "research cloning," or "therapeutic cloning."

Questions they hope will be addressed include "Is the nuclear transfer challenge one of understanding or technique?," "Is it time to reevaluate the ethics of stem cell cloning?" and "Does stem cell cloning need new terminology?"

On that last question, I was thinking, "Isn't "stem cell cloning" new terminology?" It seems to be a new attempt to blur the reality that human cloning for research wouldn't create stem cells, it would create a nascent cloned human being who could then be destroyed for her stem cells while at the same time trying to connect cloning to something which must people see as positive (stem cells). This new terminology question could almost be a contest to find the best way for proponents of human cloning for research to label what they want to do in a way that doesn't turn off the public.

So if you're one of those individuals interested in this kind of bio-ethical stuff, go over there and leave a comment.

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Life Links 3/27/07

The Daily Mail reports on the work of German researchers to use adult stem cells from the hip bones of patients with liver cancer to grow their livers big enough to remove the cancerous sections.

The National Institutes of Health is providing a $1 million grant (with the possibility of it being extended to $4 million) to a biotech company which will focus its work on using stem cells from amniotic fluid and the placenta to help treat diabetes.

German authorities are working to stop a rash of infanticides.

Monday, March 26, 2007

Failure to Compute

Jessica Valenti at the BushvChoice blog has a post attacking the bill in South Carolina which would require women to see an ultrasound of their child before having an abortion. At the end of her post, Jessica has a paragraph which makes no sense at all. I think this is mainly because of the pro-choice echo chamber she's in. Some pro-choice activists, including Jessica, are convinced the restrictions prolifers enact to limit abortion aren't about protecting the unborn but rather are about punishing women for having wanted sex. Sometimes they'll go to the most absurd lengths to fit this fiendish motive on prolifers. For example,

And if you had any doubt that this law was about punishing women, and somehow making them “face” their transgression, check this out:

Rep. Todd Rutherford, D-Richland, railed against Republicans for opposing his amendment to exempt victims of rape and incest from the required ultrasound viewing.
This logic goes to show that this isn’t about making sure women are informed—it’s about punishing them. So women who were raped shouldn’t have to have their noses rubbed in their pregnancies and be punished any further--that’s just for the “bad” women who wanted to have sex. Ugh.

Huh? Either Jessica didn't read the article very carefully or somehow she thinks because an amendment sponsored by a Democrat (who voted against the legislation without his amendment) to provide exemptions for rape and incest was turned down by Republicans, that somehow proves Republicans want to punish women who wanted to have sex.

When you believe the mean-spirited motives you've put on your opponents, it appears it is difficult to recognize information which turns your theory on its head.

Stem Cell Links

Wesley Smith on Feinstein's and Hatch's deceptive cloning bill.
Through deceptive definitions and smoke and mirror redirection, the Human Cloning Ban and Stem Cell Protection Act of 2007 claims to ban human cloning, but actually legalizes it. It purports to prohibit egg buying, when instead it explicitly opens the door to paying women to be egg "donors." And it purports to protect "stem-cell research," even though that area of experimentation isn't anywhere mentioned in the bill--other than in the title.

An ABC News story on how researchers are using stem cells from leg muscles to treat patients with poor heart function or heart failure.

Osiris Therapeutic's has announced that treating patients who recently suffered a heart attack with adult stem cells can help patients recover and ease symptoms like irregular heartbeats and premature contractions. The stem cells came from donors instead of the patient.

Friday, March 23, 2007

Life Links 3/23/07

But the embryos will destroyed anyway, so why not perform research on them and get something out of it? Scott Klusendorf (who'll be in my part of country on April 4 to debate the ACLU's President) provides an answer.

Mississippi's governor Haley Barbour has signed an abortion trigger law that will go into effect when Roe v. Wade is overturned.

Paying women $500 to choose adoption over abortion? That's what one Texas legislator wants to do.

The LA Times had an article (registration required, I believe) about the prolife movement's attempts to reach out to the African-American community.
"Now that I look at him, I wouldn't care if the counselors were white, Asian, black — they saved his life," Yarbrough said. "But when I first started out … I wouldn't have been as comfortable with a white person as I was with Jettie. She looks like me. She knows what I'm going through."
Also, you won't want to miss Janice Martel Gaiter's opinion on which organizations should be allowed into the black community. For some reason, I think she believes that Planned Parenthood, NARAL, NOW, etc. aren't "upper-middle-class white organizations" while prolife organizations are.

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

As if you needed another reason to dislike prosperity theology

A church in Michigan has purchased a $4 million house for their pastor.

Supposedly, this is "compensation" for the pastor leaving a high paying job in the auto industry. Is it me or does this totally skew what the call of God to be a pastor is all about?

HT: Mindful Mission

LifeLinks 3/21/07

Is praying in front of an abortion clinic worker's house and having a picture of an aborted child "disturbing the peace?"

An abandoned newborn was found dead outside a motel in Ypsilanti Township. Here's the reaction of the man who found the child.
"I didn't get much sleep," Dziak said Tuesday. "How you can live with yourself after this? That has to be an amazing strain on somebody."

MIT's Technology Review has an article on a new study which hopes to clarify some issues in using adult stem cells to treat patients with heart ailments.

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Life Links 3/20/07

The Georgia Senate has passed a bill to promote non-destructive types of stem cell research.

South Carolina legislators have introduced a bill which would require women to see an ultrasound image of their unborn child before an abortion.

Wouldn't be nice if AP reporters (and editors, for that matter) knew enough about stem cell research and human cloning to not allow this kind of gobblegook into their stories.
Challengers say they want cures, too. But they're against research that uses embryos. With the technique, known as somatic cell nuclear transfer, embryos are destroyed once stem cells are extracted from an altered human egg stimulated to grow in a lab dish.
How did somatic cell nuclear transfer (a technique researchers use to try to create cloned human embryos) become a technique to destroy human embryos altered human eggs?

One wonders if Andale Gross took the time to actually interview anyone who was opposed to the creation and destruction of cloned human embryos. Probably not.

When the headline doesn't match

How is this for a headline? Ugh....At least the first sentence clarifies the headline.

Monday, March 19, 2007

Abortion "meltdown"

A woman who is scheduled to have an abortion near the end of the month is struggling with her emotions about her decision. Some excerpts from her posts:
My feelings of guilt and shame are overwhelming. I can't bear to face friends/co-workers/ family right now because I feel like a fraud. I feel that if they knew about the scheduled abortion, they would lose all respect for me.....

I don't for a second doubt my decision – I just don't know how to handle the feelings inside. I can't stop crying and I want to lash out and scream and vent. I know that won't solve the problem – I just don't know how else to cope. My conscience is killing me and I'm trying to reconcile the fact that there is a life growing inside of me and I'm making the decision to end it. Who am I to play God and will I ever be forgiven?? Do I even deserve forgiveness?? ......

He's not the one that has this life inside him, he's not the one that has to deal with the shame of lying on some cold medical table while a horrendous piece of equipment is shoved inside the most private part of his body in order to suck out a human life (sorry for the vulgarity).....

A while back we talked about the death penalty and he said he was opposed to it because he doesn't believe in a world that doesn't value life. Isn't this life?? This his own flesh and blood! How does he reconcile that in his mind?? I guess he just picks his values and beliefs by supporting those that have no direct or unpleasant impact on him. How very easy and convenient. .......

MB and I have none of those issues – there is absolutely no reason for us not to see this through other than we are two of the most selfish people on the planet. We are completely capable of providing a good life for this child but instead we care only about ourselves and how we would be inconvenienced. The realization that this is who I really am is making me sick ....

This woman admits there is a life inside her and she is making the decision to end that life for what she says are selfish reasons. She even wonders if she deserves forgiveness.

As prolifers I think we sometimes think we just need to prove to women that what is growing in their wombs is a life (therefore abortion takes that life) and then they'll decide against abortion.

But it doesn't always work that way. There are some women who know full well what's going on, don't think abortion is a positive thing and yet have one anyway. This woman's conscience isn't allowing her to go through with an abortion as if it were a just an everyday medical procedure. Her conscience is forcing her to examine herself and her reasoning and she doesn't like what she sees. Yet she still plans on having an abortion.

What can the prolife movement say to a pregnant woman who understands she's carrying a life, is against making an adoption plan, and has decided on abortion even though her conscience is fighting it and she doesn't like the reasons for her decision?

Life Links 3/19/07

The NIH has a site on new advances in non-embryonic stem cell research which claims it will be updated on a regular basis as new peer-reviewed studies are published.

Meanwhile, the Detroit Free Press editorial board is continuing to prove itself to be one of the most incompetent in the country. A recent editorial calls on Michigan to lift its non-existent ban on embryonic stem cell research. The headline ("Lift state's ban on stem cell research") is even more misleading. The article is filled with more misinformation including the claim that Iowa lifted their restrictions on stem cell research when what the actually did was repeal their ban on human cloning for research. I think the best claim though has to be that Minnesota has an "express ban" on embryonic stem cell research. Don't tell that to the people in charge of the University of Minnesota's human embryonic stem cell training program!

So is the Detroit Free Press editorial board A.) stupid, B.) lazy, C.) biased or D.) all of the above?

Macht on what happens when we see children as "wanted" and "unwanted." I think he also has a good point regarding how sexual temptation doesn't disappear if you're homosexual or heterosexual or with marriage.
A "wanted child" owes his or her very existence to his or her mother. A "wanted child" in an abortion-friendly culture is a child whose existence is due to that child's particular qualities or the "life situation" of the parents. In other words, the child is not accepted or welcomed into this world unconditionally. If the child is in good health and doesn't have any genetic abnormalities and the parents are financially well off and if the parents are responsible enough and so on and so forth, then we will welcome and accept the child.

The idea of a "wanted child" is totally foreign to Christian thought. Christians say that all humans deserve love, dignity, and acceptance unconditionally and a culture of abortion does not allow this.

Bobby Schindler reviews some of what happened to his sister on the second anniversary of the removal of her feeding tube.

Friday, March 16, 2007

I must be one of those "useful idiots"

What I often find disconcerting about some individuals who post comments on pro-choice blogs is how they view the prolife movement and its intentions. For example, this comment by Dianne at Feministe:
It is in the US's interest to make people in most of the world as miserable as possible and killing and maiming women is one way they do it. Plus anti-choicers get off on the idea of women being hurt. Oh, there are people who believe that they are saving lives by preventing abortion. I suspect that the higher ups in the anti-choice industry refer to them as "useful idiots". But the average professional anti-choicer is dedicated to enslaving, maiming, and killing women. Period. There is no desire to "save babies" there.

Pushing aside the nonsensical U.S. interests bit - this is just so weird to me. Are all the professional prolife women (probably the majority of professional prolifers) dedicated to enslaving, maiming and killing women? If the main goal of professional prolifers is to do all these horrible things to women then why do they spend all this time and energy on other issues (embryonic stem cell research, euthanasia, cloning, etc.) which don't effect whether women can have abortions or not? Is all that work just a ploy to keep their cover? If prolifers want to hurt and punish women then why do most prolifers not favor the idea of imprisoning women if abortion were to become illegal? What are the board meetings of the "higher ups" like? Old, white men cackling as they plot the next way to enslave, maim and kill women?

How can people who go about working, interacting and living as average human beings think such incomprehensibly foolish things?

Is it really that hard to fathom some people genuinely think killing nascent human beings is wrong and should be stopped and because of this they dedicate their lives to trying to save those human beings?

Winning the Fetus Debate

The posters at the Life Training Institute Blog are having a decision about the term fetus. Jay started by writing that he thinks prolifers shouldn't fear the use of the term "fetus," Serge points out some pro-choicers use the term "fetus" as an attempt to dehumanize the unborn and he tries to remember to always use the terms "human fetus" or "fetal human being" instead of just saying fetus, and then Jay discusses how poor an argument it is when pro-choicers act like they've proven the unborn aren't worthy of protection simply by calling them fetuses.

What I find interesting here is that I think the prolife movement for the most part has won the debate over what a human fetus is or isn't. I think when most people hear the term fetus, they don't think about a tiny grouping of cell with no value but rather they think about a miniature human being in the womb which has some value. Their minds go to the 3-D images of unborn children or they think of children who are born very premature as being in the womb. As time has passed, more people have become familiar with the term and it is not as abstract as it once was. Hardly anyone thinks fetal farming (killing human fetuses solely for their parts) should be permitted and reading pro-choice blogs I rarely see the term fetus used as if human fetuses weren't worth a dime. Only the dimmest of dim think this somehow amounts to some great point. Some prolifers have even used terms which were once so dehumanizing to humanize the unborn in the eyes of others.

I believe the same thing is happening to a certain extent with the term "embryo." Lawmakers and advocates whom favor of embryonic stem cell research and the creation of cloned human embryos for research will often intentionally avoid using the term "embryo." Somehow they think it's persuasive to argue the human embryonic stem cells they so crave are removed from something which is not a human embryo. Other terms like "pre-embryo," "certain material" or, in the case of legislation to expressly legalize the creation of cloned human embryos for research, "unfertilized egg" are used as synonyms for what they know to be a human embryo.

Why are they scared of using the term "human embryo?" Or even just "embryo?"

Because they recognize a decent portion of our society has become familiar with the term "embryo" and recognize that a human embryo is, just that, a human being in the embryonic stage of development. Terms like "pre-embryo," "unfertilized egg," and "product of nuclear transplantation" are the next generation of terms used to dehumanize the unborn. They need these new terms because the terms "fetus" and "embryo" no longer have the dehumanizing effect they once had in the public arena.

Thursday, March 15, 2007

The Worst Father of Year Award

Goes to a man from Indianapolis named Kevin Chandler who is accused of stabbing his 11-month old son Devon in the back with a kitchen knife and then throwing him out of the car.

Thankfully, the child survived and is recovering.

More stem cell links

Scientists in Britain are using adult stem cells to help treat patients who have a rare genetic eye disorder called aniridia.
Four patients have so far received the treatment successfully in one eye and reported an improvement in their comfort and vision, and now await treatment in their other eye.

The University of Wisconsin is one of 15-20 research sites taking part in a Phase II study to "investigate the efficacy, tolerability, and safety of blood-derived selected stem cells to improve symptoms and clinical outcomes in patients with chronic myocardial ischemia (CMI), a severe form of coronary artery disease."

There's an event tonight at the University of Michigan co-sponsored by the Student Society for Stem Cell Research and the Students for Life focusing on embryonic stem cell research. I'm impressed these groups are working together to put on what looks to be an interesting and informative event. Each group has invited three speakers to address the issue. According the SFL web site, former congressman Joe Schwarz, Dr. Sue O'Shea and Kathleen Russell will be speaking for the SSSCR while Rep. Jack Hoogendyk, Dr. David Prentice and Cindy Northon will be speaking for the Students for Life.

Worst Boyfriend of the Year Award

This year's award goes to Daniel Riase. Riase is a 21 year-old man from Virginia who faces charges (including administering a drug with the intent to cause an abortion) after crushing misoprostol (one of the drugs used in an RU-486 abortion) pills and putting them in his pregnant girlfriend's glass of milk.

His girlfriend began to bleed and then drove herself to a hospital where she was told that she miscarried. Here are some more background articles with more information.

After losing her child, I-Sharii Best, investigated her boyfriend and found an e-mail verification of his order of the abortion pills. She then recorded her boyfriend's admission on a tape recorder after confronting him. Before spiking her drink with the abortion drug, Riase had tried to pressure Best into getting an abortion.

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Stem Cell Links

Six Stem Cell Facts by Robert George and Father Thomas Berg
Most scientists acknowledge that ESCs will not provide therapies for many years, if ever. Their therapeutic potential is, at best, speculative. They cannot be used now, even in clinical trials, because of their tendency to produce tumors. So it comes as no surprise that many scientists now admit that their primary interest in pursuing ESC research lies not in the hope for direct cell transplant therapies, but in the desire to enhance basic scientific knowledge of such things as cell signaling, tissue growth and early human development.

The Baltimore Sun has an article about the importance of words in the stem cell debate.

California's U.S. Senator Dianne Feinstein delusionally thinks embryonic stem cell researchers are "handcuffed" even though her state will be doling out billions of dollars to them in the next decade. We should also know that "the hopes of millions of Americans depend on" President Bush changing his mind about the federal funding of killing human embryos.

"Forceps encrusted in brownish blood-like residues"

That was one of the reasons the New Jersey state health department has temporarily closed down the Metropolitan Medical Associates in Englewood according to this story in the Record.

Inspectors also found opened packs of items which were supposed to be sterilized, rusty crotchet hooks (which were used to remove IUDs), and "a quarter-inch of dark red "dirt and debris" under an exam table."

The clinic also couldn't prove they had anyone in control of infection control and the person who was supposedly in charge of it wasn't trained and couldn't recall being in charge of it. Also,
In separate records released Tuesday, investigators concluded the facility failed to notify the department "of an event occurring within the facility that jeopardized the health and safety of a patient." The department refused to release details of the "event."

The department also found that the patient's medical and operative records were incomplete.

"The operative report was not immediately completed following the procedure because Staff Member #1 reported being 'superstitious' and was aware that Patient #1 had emergency surgery performed and was waiting for the results," investigators wrote. The patient has since sued for malpractice.
Pro-choice advocates spend a lot of time lamenting on the poor conditions of illegal abortions in foreign countries yet I've heard not a word from abortion advocates (like the National Abortion Federation) about these seedy conditions at one of their own facilities.

This case also shows how some abortion providers work to cover up their mistakes and don't follow the law about reporting abortion complications to the state health department.

Another less than safe abortion clinic
More on shady abortion clinic
Still more on the Metropolitan Medical Associates

"It just hurts so bad!!!! Yes, I feel like I am murdering my own child!"

So says a pro-choice woman who is pregnant with her fourth child. Yet she thinks abortion is the right decision in her situation. Plus, her boyfriend, who is 20 years older, is pushing her to have an abortion because he doesn't want his father (a pastor) to find out he had sex outside of marriage.

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Life Links 3/13/07

The bodies of two unborn children were found in a storage shed after a woman admitted to self-aborting after her husband's suicide. The police got a tip after the woman told friends. How does that subject come in conversation?

Rich Lowry: Who Cares About Abortion?

Rudy Giuliani hates abortion? My behind.

Researchers at the University of Michigan have that a type of stem cells in lungs "may be able to help with lung disease and donated organ rejection."

Monday, March 12, 2007

Baby got book

This is about a year old but I hadn't seen it until today.

"It's worn, it's torn and I know that girl's reborn."

"39 plus 27 equals 66 books. And if you're Catholic, there's even more."

Friday, March 09, 2007

Friday Cat Blogging

In case you wondered whether cats like to be put in a Christmas stocking.

They don't.

They can't wait to start misrepresenting prolife legislation, huh? Totally believable.

Jessica at Feministing and at the BushvChoice blog links to an article about Mississippi's trigger law to ban abortion except in the cases of life of the mother and rape once Roe v. Wade is overturned. After quoting the article about the legislation and how someone guilty of performing an illegal abortion would spend 1 to 10 years in jail, Jessica exclaims,
They just can't wait to start punishing women, huh? Unbelievable.
Too bad Jessica probably hasn't actually read the legislation because if she did that basic research she might have known the law says specifically that women won't be punished for performing abortions on themselves (my emphasis below).
Any person, except the pregnant woman, who purposefully, knowingly or recklessly performs or attempts to perform or induce an abortion in the State of Mississippi, except in the case where necessary for the preservation of the mother's life or where the pregnancy was caused by rape, upon conviction, shall be punished by imprisonment in the custody of the Department of Corrections for not less than one (1) year nor more than ten (10) years.
But hey, why do simple research like reading legislation before commenting on it when you can just pigeonhole prolifers as people who just want to punish women?

Life Links 3/9/07

Ramesh Ponnuru on prolife litmus tests.

One thing I think is often missing when talking about Giuliani's positions on life issues is his position on other life issues like the funding of embryonic stem cell research and human cloning for research and even the funding of international groups which promote abortions overseas. He promises to appoint the right kind of judges but will he promise to continue the Mexico City Policy and prevent tax dollars from being used to kill human embryos? Probably not.

Beverly Nuckols explains how embryonic stem cells need to be changed into adult stem cells before they can be used.
The answers are obvious if you think about it -- even the "embryonic proponents" are trying to make adult stem cells.

None of the treatments involved in therapy - now or in any likely future therapies - are actual embryonic stem cells, because the cells we need will only function in specific conditions and surroundings. The specific conditions and surroundings are only found in place, in the actual site of damage.

Embryonic stem cells function is to make embryonic tissues and must develop into precursors and then specific tissues. The "gold standard" test for embryonic stem cells is their ability to make tumors called teratomas in mice. And this is what they would do in any body, as long as they are "embryonic stem cells."

It's all about the patents, baby! An editorial in the journal Stem Cell says isolated stem cell lines should be patented. When researchers like the University of Michigan's Sean Morrison tell you they need to create their own embryonic stem cell lines, it's not because those stem cell lines are somehow going to work better than other embryonic stem cell lines or being able to create kill embryos is somehow going to create thousands of jobs. It's because they want the patents.

Thursday, March 08, 2007

Life Links 3/8/07

Catholic World News is reporting the baby boy from Italy who survived an abortion has died.

Missourians aren't going to accept human cloning in Missouri without a fight.

Richard Doerflinger lists 75 New Reasons to Reconsider the Alleged Need for Stem Cell Research which Destroys Human Embryos.

Attempt to kill unborn child because of supposed abnormalities fails and it turns out there weren't abnormalities

A baby in Italy is struggling to survive after an attempted abortion at 22 weeks failed. The reason for the abortion was because there were indications the child had digestive system abnormalities (which are correctable, by the way). After the child was born alive, it was discovered the child didn't have the abnormalities.

Michigan's financial woes

Greg Kaza paints the picture of Michigan's continuous single state recession and how the economies of western states are expanding. Will Governor Granholm take note? Not likely.

Wednesday, March 07, 2007

Life Links 3/7/07

A woman in the Boston area named Jennifer Raper is suing Planned Parenthood for child rearing costs after one of Planned Parenthood's abortionist failed at killing her unborn child in 2004. She is also suing another doctor who failed to detect her pregnancy months after the failed abortion.

The Metropolitan Medical Associates abortion clinic in Englewood, New Jersey has failed to pass its follow-up investigation 12 days after being closed up by the health department of the state of New Jersey. The clinic had assured the health department that it had taken care of its violations.

The Detroit News has a good article on umbilical cord blood and how to donate umbilical cord blood in Michigan.

The National Catholic Register isn't about to accept Rudy Giulani's position on abortion.
We're sorry, but we don't see what is so unreasonable about the right to life. We've seen ultrasounds, we've named our babies in the womb, we've seen women destroyed by abortion. What looks supremely unreasonable to us is that we should trust a leader who not doesn't only reject the right to life but even supports partial-birth abortion, which is more infanticide than abortion.

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Life Links 3/6/07

Here's a spectacularly bad editorial on stem cell research entitled "Stem cell research is the only hope for our future" by Cal-State Fullerton student Cindy Cafferty. Paging Obi-Wan Kenobi.

Probably the worst part is when Cafferty tries to explain the financial cost of Proposition 73 (6 billion dollars "might cost us a penny or two") and then acts like California's taxes ( 7.25% sales tax, which is highest in the nation and 9.3% income tax if you make more than $40,000 ) - aren't that bad ("California, comparatively speaking, is in the bottom of income tax revenue collection by national standards").

An Iowan takes issue with the DesMoines Register's assertion that "Destroying (human embryos) isn't the same as destroying a human life."

Stuart Taylor has a prediction on how the Supreme Court will rule on the federal partial-birth abortion ban amongst other predictions.
Abortion. The Roberts Court has already voted in a big abortion case, on the constitutionality of the federal Partial-Birth Abortion Ban Act of 2003. But we probably won't know who won until June.

Pro-choicers noisily fear, and pro-lifers hope, that the Court will uphold this congressional ban on a late-term abortion procedure likened by critics to infanticide because the fetus is destroyed when mostly outside the womb. In the process, many predict, the justices will overrule a major 2000 decision striking down a very similar Nebraska ban. O'Connor was the fifth vote then. Alito is now, and this will be the first salvo in a conservative assault on Roe v. Wade.

My predictions are different: The Court will indeed uphold the federal "partial-birth" ban -- thanks to the Alito-O'Connor swap -- but only by construing it so narrowly that it will have very little effect. And the Court will never overrule Roe v. Wade.

Specifically, the justices will limit the federal ban to "D&X," or dilation and extraction, abortions, the most grisly late-term procedure, and exempt "D&E," or dilation and evacuation, abortions, which are much more common. The Court may also carve out an exception to the ban for those exceedingly rare cases in which more than a few medical experts consider D&X safer than D&E. The justices will narrow but stop short of overruling the 2000 Nebraska decision.

During the argument on this case, Roberts seemed to be pushing for a narrow interpretation of the federal ban. Such a split-the-difference approach might appeal to the conflicted Kennedy; he is the fifth pro-Roe vote, but he wanted to uphold the Nebraska "partial-birth" ban. In future cases, the justices will narrow Roe v. Wade (as they started doing in 1992) but strike down any state laws making it difficult for most women to get abortions.

Amazing Ignorance

At ProlifeBlogs, Barbara links to an article in the Columbia Tribune which discusses ministers, rabbis and other religious people who are pro-choice.
Blake's 40 years of supporting reproductive choice began when he was a medical student and saw women who had been mutilated by illegal abortion, he said.

"Millions of women had illegal abortions," he said. "Only a small percentage had abortions that were performed by people that knew what they were doing."
How does one square that quote with the following quote from Dr. Mary Calderone (medical director of Planned Parenthood at the time) in the American Journal of Health in 1960?
"...90% of all illegal abortions are done by physicians. Call them what you will, abortionists or anything else, they are still physicians, trained as such; and many are in good standing in their communities. Whatever trouble arises usually comes after self-induced abortions, which comprise approximately 8 percent, or with the very small percentage that go to some kind of non-medical abortionist. Another corollary fact: physicians of impeccable standing are referring their patients for these illegal abortions to colleagues they know are willing to perform them."
Another classic quote from the pro-choice religious crowd:
Brown said he believes the right to reproductive choice is inborn and connected to being created in God's image and free will.
Do you get that? So being created in the image of God gives us certain rights, including the right to kill another being created in the image of God?

Still more really bad arguments. One Bonnie Shapero:
"My feeling has been all along if the government can tell you that you can't have an abortion, that is very close to the government telling you that you have to have an abortion."
What utter nonsense. They're not very close. They're polar opposites. For example, "My feeling has been all along if the government can tell you that you can't steal, that is very close to the government telling you that you have to steal. If the government can tell you that you can't rape, that is very close to the government telling you that you have to rape. If the government can tell you that you can't murder, that is very close to government telling you that you have to murder. If the government can tell you that you can't snort cocaine, that is very close to the government telling you that you have to snort cocaine. If the government can tell you that same sex people can't marry, that is very close to the government telling you that you have to marry someone of the same sex." What other issue could someone say something so completely unreasoned and incoherent and not get laughed at by everyone around them?

Another from Rebecca Turner:
Turner said the MORCRC's bottom line is "because religions do not agree on the beginning of life, ensoulment or when abortion is a morally acceptable choice, the government cannot legislate one religious view over another.
Bad assumption: The belief that life begins at conception is a religious view.

Bad argument: Because different religion take different positions on what is morally acceptable, the government cannot (or should not) speak legislatively on an issue where there is disagreement among religions.

What would be consequences of such an argument? Human sacrifice would be legal because some religions call for it. Some Muslims religious leaders think killing certain non-Muslims is morally acceptable so therefore the government shouldn't speak legislatively on whether Muslims can kill non-Muslim. Some church leaders might even think it is morally acceptable to bomb abortion clinics so killing abortionists shouldn't be legislated according to Turner's argument.

I sometimes think that the people who attempt to defend abortion on religious grounds often come up with some the worst arguments for why abortion should be legal.

Monday, March 05, 2007

Still more on the Metropolitan Medical Associates

After hearing about Rasheedah Dinkins' lawsuit against abortionists Keith Gresham and Nicholas Kotopoulos of the Metropolitan Medical Associates, a woman named Christina Ruvolo has come forward to talk about her abortion complications at MMA.
"They didn't finish it," Ruvolo said. "There was a part of the baby inside."
She said she tried to talk to a doctor after the second procedure resulted in complications, but the staff would not help her.
Another woman named Gloria Mozas has also come forward and is suing the abortion clinic for injuries she suffered in 2003.

Friday, March 02, 2007

Are we smarter than a fifth grader?

Bryan Kemper points out how in describing what the unborn are, adults are often not smarter than fifth-graders.

National Day of Appreciation for Abortion Providers

At least one organization, the National Abortion Federation, is gearing up to celebrate and honor people who make a living killing unborn children. The irony is that they're doing this while one of their abortion providers is being sued because they put a woman in a coma for a month. I'm guessing Rasheedah Dinkins won't be signing that petition anytime soon.

Life Links 3/2/07

Michael Fumento on the "false adult stem cell paper" that wasn't false.

Frank Beckmann: Civility can still reign even on divisive issue of abortion

Though Tim Stickel's kindness towards the protestors was commendable, I believe he could have given some better answers to their questions.

Adult stem cells might eventually be able to help treat male infertility.
These data demonstrate that bone marrow stem cells have the potential to differentiate into cells of the testes involved in sperm production, both germ cells and supporting cells. Interestingly, the germ cells did not differentiate fully into sperm, suggesting that additional factors or cellular signals are needed.

Future studies will characterize the other factors, such as hormones, required to complete sperm production in this transplant model. In addition, since the bone marrow cells used here represent a mixed population of stem cells, further studies will determine which specific stem cell type was able to colonize and differentiate in the testes. The results of future studies could have dramatic implications for treating male infertility or testosterone deficiency.
The abstract of the study is here.

Thursday, March 01, 2007

More on the shady abortion clinic in Englewood, New Jersey

After being temporarily shut down by the state of New Jersey, Metropolitan Medical Associates is getting sued by a woman named Rasheedah Dinkins who spent a month in a coma after her abortion.
Dinkins, 20, felt ill after undergoing the abortion, and had to be rushed to a hospital by ambulance after she passed out at her home, her family said.

Once there, she was given blood transfusions and had her uterus removed, Slater said. The attorney also said Dinkins suffered a stroke due to serious blood loss, and one of her lungs collapsed.

More Cloning Deception in Iowa

Iowa Governor Chet Culver signed a bill into law to legalize human cloning for research. At the signing he said ,
"Today, thousands of Iowans who have been affected by serious illness and disease now have hope."
Do you think Culver actually believes this? I can't imagine how ticked off I would be if I had a horrible disease and politicians like Culver were continually telling me that this research would save my life only to find out this research is never going to come anywhere near saving my life. I guess human cloning for research proponents hope people with diseases have short memories.

Culver also said,
I want to thank everyone who has been fighting for this life-saving research for the last five years since the stem cell research ban went into effect.

Things to note:
1. Human cloning for research hasn't come anywhere near helping any human patient much less saving a single life so how can Culver call it "life-saving?"
2. Did the Iowa legislature ban stem cell research or did they ban human cloning for research five years ago? Why can't proponents of human cloning for research be honest about what they want?

The absolute vileness of these people. It makes my skin crawl.

Our argument is we have no argument

Debating Human Cloning Legislation in Iowa