Friday, January 29, 2010

Scott Roeder convicted of first degree murder

It took the jury only 37 minutes to find Scott Roeder guilty of first degree murder after he admitted that he shot abortionist George Tiller.

Life Links 1/29/10

Yesterday, Scott Roeder admitted on the stand to killing abortionist George Tiller and at the end of his testimony Judge Warren Wilbert ruled that the jury couldn't consider Roeder guilty of only voluntary manslaughter.
In his testimony, Roeder did not dispute any of the evidence brought against him by prosecutors. He admitted he bought a gun and ammunition, and took target practice in the days prior to Tiller's shooting.

He said he had thought about killing Tiller for years, even considering buying a sword to cut off his hands or hiding out like a sniper to shoot him walking into his Wichita, Kansas abortion clinic.

Roeder also acknowledged having carried a gun into Tiller's church on at least two occasions prior to May 31 and said he had considered killing other abortion doctors but that Tiller was his only "target."

Authorities in New York have released some more details about Kisha Jones' alleged attempts to kill the child of her husband's mistress. After tricking her into taking an abortion drug (which could have caused the child's premature birth), Jones then pretended to be a hospital administrator and tried to get hospital staff to allow a man to feed the child a "tainted liquid" she claimed was breast milk.

In New Jersey, a trial is underway where the defendant Ahmmad Johnson is charged with car jacking and then shooting his girlfriend's father (he survived) in a drive-by. He allegedly attempted to kill his girlfriend's father because he had convinced her to have an abortion. He also allegedly killed the car's owner, Piotr Raczek, after Raczek identified him as the car thief.

A teen in South Carolina will appear in court today after being charged with desecrating human remains for burying a stillborn child.
Officers with the Horry County Police Department were dispatched to a location on 17th Avenue North in Surfside Beach around 3 a.m. on Dec. 7 after pictures of the deceased fetus were discovered on the teen's phone. Other pictures shown to authorities upon arrival included what appeared to be a burial for the fetus.

Police say the mother of the 16-year-old girl went to an address on Woodwinds Drive in Conway, where she dug up the skeletal remains of the fetus herself.
Another story notes the child was less than 20 weeks old.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Check-mated by his own P.R.

I think Rich Lowry provides an apt explanation for President Obama's recent troubles.
It's a sign of how lost he is that he invoked the "I didn't explain clearly enough" defense on health-care — this from the guy whose every utterance has been hyped as brilliant, moving, and for the ages. By the end, the self-pity (it reminded me a little of that debate where Bush kept on saying the Iraq War is hard) and the dishonesty (it's as if he didn't bless all the back-room deals that have disgusted people) interacted in a toxic way. Here is a man check-mated by his own P.R., which created the otherworldly expectation that all the inherent difficulties of governing could be resolved in himself, and his blatant misreading of the electorate and his mandate.

Life Links 1/28/10

Chris Stirewalt on the left’s reaction to Focus on the Family’s Super Bowl ad featuring Tim Tebow:
News of the ad had a predictably Pavlovian effect on the Left. Since the spot combines many of the elements that the "educated class" most detests about America -- frank expressions of Christianity, pro-life advocacy, home-schoolers, football hero worship and the South -- they were incensed that cash-strapped CBS would take Focus on the Family's money.

Jehmu Greene, head of the Women's Media Center, is leading a drive to punish CBS for airing the ad, which she claims is "sexist."

A little decoding is necessary here.

In terms of Super Bowl ads, "sexist" is code for "anti-abortion." But "sexist" does not apply to parading women around in their underpants to sell beer.

Got it?

Meghan Duke relates her experience of being told to remove a prolife pin when she visited the National Gallery of Art after the March for Life.
I decided to visit the Gallery after attending the March for Life the day before. There was an exhibit on processes of photography before the digital age that I hoped would confirm me in my refusal to give up on film. After searching my bag, the two guards at the Gallery told me, “You’re good to go in, but first you need to remove that pro-life pin.” He was indicating the small lime green pin with the message “” and the silhouette of a small hand inside that of a larger hand that I had attached to the lapel of my coat. The pin, they informed me, was a “religious symbol” and a symbol of a particular political cause and it could not be worn inside a federal building. Why, I asked, can I not wear a religious or political symbol inside a federal building?

Stanford scientists have changed skin cells from mice tails into neurons without first making them pluripotent.
In the past, normal cells have been coaxed into changing function by first turning them into "induced" stem cells.

These have similar properties to stem cells taken from embryos, giving them the potential to become any kind of tissue in the body.

The new research went a step further by transforming mouse skin cells straight into functional neurons, while by-passing the stem cell process. .

Remember those “Choose your own adventure” books? You know, the ones where the reader could decide what the protagonists would do. “If you choose to enter the spooky old house, turn to page 131. If you choose to go to the police station, turn to page 189.”

There is now a web show called “Bump +” in which the viewers apparently choose what the actors in this fake reality show do with their pregnancies.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Life Links 1/27/10

Sarah Palin slaps down NOW for their protestations of the Tebows' Super Bowl ad.
NOW is looking at the pro-life issue backwards. Women should be reminded that they are strong enough and smart enough to make decisions that allow for career and educational opportunities while still giving their babies a chance at life. In my own home, my daughter Bristol has also been challenged by pro-abortion “women’s rights” groups who don’t agree with her decision to have her baby, nor do they like the abstinence message which she articulated as her personal commitment. NOW could gain ground and credibility with everyday Americans, thus allowing their pro-women message to be heard by more than just their ardent supporters, if they made wiser decisions regarding which battles to pick. They should call attention to and embrace the Tebows’ message, instead of covertly and overtly disrespecting what Mrs. Tebow, Bristol, and millions of other women have chosen to do (in less than ideal circumstances).

Serge contrasts how our society treats thalidomide and RU-486.
Thalidomide accidentally caused harm to 10,000 unborn children. However, the UK as well as the US presently approves a medication that intentionally kills millions of unborn children. That medication is mifiprex or RU-486. Unlike thalidomide, the only reason that mifiprex is given is to intentionally kill an unborn child. If the unborn child survives after a woman takes mifiprex, it is considered a failure of the medication.

What does it say about our culture that we issue apologies for harming children in the past at the same time we market a medication that intentionally kills children? Instead of harming children, what if thalidomide was more effective in killing them? Would we still apologize?

Senator Ben Nelson is now claiming in an interview with LifeSite News that he planned on putting the Nelson-Hatch-Casey amendment (which mirrors the Stupak amendment) into health care reform once the bill got to conference committee where he thinks he would have had more leverage. I don't know who's going to buy that story.

What is happening to my city?

A 15-year-old girl allegedly stabbed her cousin in the back with a knife after a dispute regarding his borrowing of movies.

Woman, child die in crash on I-94

This is an incredibly sad story. A pregnant woman and her child died yesterday on the I-94 in Detroit when their car hit a pole and she was thrown out of the car. The child came out of his mother's body after the crash.
A 23-year-old pregnant woman died in a car crash on I-94 on Tuesday morning, along with her baby, who was ripped from her body along the freeway.

Shardae Homesly of Detroit was not wearing a seat belt as she rode in the front seat of her SUV, driven by her fiancé, Michigan State Police Sgt. Linda Mys said.....

But the 7 1/2 -month-old fetus Homesly had been carrying fell from her ripped-open body, Mys said.

"Troopers at the scene realized the grotesque scene in front of them," Mys said, explaining the rush to save the baby.

Mother and son were taken to St. John Hospital, where Homesly worked as a lab technician. Both were pronounced dead there.

The AP's version of the story in the Chicago Tribune calls the child a "fetus."

New Jersey woman dies after abortion in New York clinic

A 37-year-old woman and mother of four named Alexandra Nunez died after getting an abortion at the A1 Medicine abortion clinic in Queens.
Alexandra Nuñez began bleeding heavily during the procedure at A1 Medicine in Jackson Heights on Monday, officials said.

One of Nuñez's arteries was inadvertently severed and she went into cardiac arrest, according to police sources.

She was taken to Elmhurst Hospital Center, where she died a short time later.
Here's the caring response from the abortion clinic.
An employee at the clinic - a one-stop gynecology and plastic surgery clinic that was still seeing patients yesterday - insisted that everything had gone well at the second-floor medical facility.

"The patient was transferred to the hospital, she didn't die at the clinic," said the woman, who refused to give her name. "Nothing happened here."

Former Aide: John Edwards wanted his mistress to have an abortion

This shouldn't really come as a surprise to anyone. According to former aide Andrew Young, former Vice-Presidential candidate John Edwards allegedly tried to get Young to help him talk his mistress Rielle Hunter into an abortion.
According to Young, Hunter called him in May 2007 to say she was pregnant. Young says that when he informed Edwards, the senator told him to “handle it,” to which he replied: “I can’t handle this one.” Young writes that Edward unloaded on Hunter as a “crazy slut,” said they had an “open relationship,” and put his paternity chances at “one in three.” Young says that Edwards asked him for help persuading Hunter to have an abortion. Young writes that Hunter believed the baby to be “some kind of golden child, the reincarnated spirit of a Buddhist monk who was going to help save the world.”

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Teen Pregnancy, Abortion Up in 2006

That's according to a new report from the Guttmacher Institute.

When you hear lazy pro-choicers like Jill at Feministe make horribly stupid generalizations (like blaming the increase completely on abstinence education) note that the majority of increase was amongst 18 and 19-year-olds.
But the new Guttmacher report rounds out the picture: in 2006, there were 71.5 pregnancies for every 1,000 women under the age of 20. That's 3% more than in 2005. The increase was concentrated among 18- and 19-year-olds — pregnancies among those 17 or younger rose only marginally — and occurred in a year when the number of abortions among teens rose 1%.

Life Links 1/26/10

The National Organization, the Feminist Majority and other pro-choice groups are petitioning CBS to not run Focus on the Family's prolife Super Bowl ad featuring Tim Tebow and his mother Pam.

CBS doesn't appear to care.
CBS said it has approved the script for the 30-second ad and has given no indication that the protest would have an impact. A network spokesman, Dana McClintock, said CBS would ensure that any issue-oriented ad was "appropriate for air."
It's amazing what abortion advocates will say about an ad they've never even seen. NOW's Terry O'Neill can't seem to understand how ridiculous it is for here to make this statement.
Terry O'Neill, the president of the National Organization for Women, said she had respect for the private choices made by women such as Pam Tebow but condemned the planned ad as "extraordinarily offensive and demeaning."

"That's not being respectful of other people's lives," O'Neill said. "It is offensive to hold one way out as being a superior way over everybody else's."
Because NOW would never hold one view about anything out as being superior to the views of others.

The LA Times summarizes early testimony in Scott Roeder's trial.

A pregnant woman in Iowa has been arrested for "attempted feticide" after allegedly throwing herself down the stairs to kill her child because she was mad at her husband.
Police were called to a hospital late Tuesday after (Christine) Taylor reportedly told a nurse she intentionally fell down the stairs of her home because she wanted to end her pregnancy.

Monday, January 25, 2010

Such a small view of woman

Watching this video of interviews at RH Reality Check blog with the few pro-choicers protesting the March for Life, I’m reminded about how often times the most adamant of pro-choicers have such a small view of women.

Interviewees act like women won’t be able to do anything if they can’t have abortions. It’s as if they think giving birth to a child from an unplanned pregnancy completely destroys any future a woman would want to have.

It's also interesting because the same poor reasoning could just as easily be used as an excuse to kill born children.

One interviewee says, “Choice means an ability to choose your path in life.”

Laurette Cucuzza doesn’t think she would have been able to “make something” of herself if she didn’t have an abortion at 17.

Maria Lauron interview thinks without abortion women wouldn’t be able to control their futures.

Michelle Kinsey Bruns thinks abortion is what allows women to make their lives what they want them to be and “make her life happen how she wants”

Polly Stamatopoulos think abortions rights are the “most fundamental rights in this country.”

My son, "a choice"

How disturbed of a person do you have to be to give your toddler a sign which reads, “I was a choice”?

The parents are basically bragging about how they could have chosen to kill their child.

HT: Jill Stanek

WaPo columnist struck by the youthfulness of the March for Life

The Washington Post has at least one pro-choice columnist who is living in reality. Robert McCartney was with it enough to actually take the time to visit the March for Life and interview some young people.
Iwent to the March for Life rally Friday on the Mall expecting to write about its irrelevance. Isn't it quaint, I thought, that these abortion protesters show up each year on the anniversary of Roe v. Wade, even though the decision still stands after 37 years. What's more, with a Democrat in the White House likely to appoint justices who support abortion rights, surely the Supreme Court isn't going to overturn Roe in the foreseeable future.

How wrong I was. The antiabortion movement feels it's gaining strength, even if it's not yet ready to predict ultimate triumph, and Roe supporters (including me) are justifiably nervous.
Also, for another example of how down in the dumps pro-choicers are now, check out the quote McCartney gets from pro-choicer at the March. Imagine how depressing it would be to see thousands of young people file by you as you stand with a dozen or so people.
Activists who support abortion rights conceded that there's less energy among young people on their side of the debate.

"Unfortunately, I feel my generation is a little complacent," said Amanda Pelletier, 20, co-director of the abortion rights group at American University. "It just doesn't seem to be a very hip issue."

Life Links 1/25/10

In a NPR interview, late-term abortionist LeRoy Carhart shared his opinion on “back-alley” abortionists who performed illegal abortions prior to Roe v. Wade.
But I've always defended the back alley providers because most of them do a really decent job.
Carhart also says, he’s “pro-life” and claims the only person who knows when life begins is the “mother of the life that she's carrying.”

Jack Cashill on a couple cases of media malpractice relating to the March for Life 2010.
As Sanchez deliberated, CNN's cameras seemed to have found the same disgruntled crew of pro-abortion protestors that USA Today had found the year before. After the commercial break, Sanchez finally conceded that although he had not "gone out and counted signs individually," most of the protestors "seem to be anti-abortion activists."

A couple of pro-choice filmmakers (Rachel Grady and Heidi Ewing) debuted a movie at Sundance Film Festival entitled, “12th and Delaware” which focuses on a crisis pregnancy center and an abortion clinic which share a street corner in Florida.
Making "12th and Delaware" turned out to be eye-opening for the filmmakers in another way: It made them feel that the anti-abortion forces, in Grady's words, "are winning the hearts-and-minds campaign. Abortion is still legal, but there's a huge taboo about it. Who cares if it's legal if no doctor will train to do it?"

"While we were sleeping," says Ewing, "the pro-life side organized a cultural campaign. A recent Gallup poll showed that for the first time more than half of the country identifies itself as pro-life. They have an unpaid multitude of soldiers and they're more revved up; they think it's murder, so of course they're revved up."

The Guttmacher Institute has a couple of resources which may be useful to prolifers. One describes various legislative actions relating to abortion in 2009. The other lists new laws enacted by states and the month of enactment.

Here’s the San Francisco Chronicle’s write-up of the West Coast March for Life.
A counterdemonstration organized by the Bay Area Coalition for Our Reproductive Rights drew only a few dozen demonstrators, many of whom marched alongside their counterparts on the Embarcadero, chanting slogans including, "Get off our ovaries, keep your rosaries."

Organizers and participants of the abortion rights demonstration worried about their paltry showing.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Friday Baby Blogging

Prolifers in 2009

Michael New explains how prolifers made a comeback in 2009.
It’s no secret that the pro-life movement lost significant ground during the 2008 elections. However, the events of 2009 have clearly demonstrated the movement’s resiliency and heft. Indeed, it is safe to say that pro-lifers have been the most effective opponents of Obamacare. Their efforts on this issue alone show unmistakably that the right-to-life movement is an indispensable part of the center-right coalition.

Life Links 1/22/10

Sarah Palin promoted the March for Life on her Facebook page yesterday.
In the years following Roe, we were told that the issue was no longer open for debate and that we should get over it and move on. But we couldn’t get over the stirrings of our conscience or move on from an issue that cuts to the heart of who we are as a nation. Affirming the dignity and worth of every innocent human life and defending the defenseless are fundamental American values. With that in mind, this peaceful, hopeful grassroots crowd of individuals, families and students comes to our capital every year to remind us that every innocent life is beautiful, precious and full of potential. These warrior souls come to show their dedication to the weakest among us: those with special needs, women without anyone to turn to, and children without a voice.

Justin Taylor has an interview with Americans United for Life's Clarke Forsythe on overturning and undermining Roe vs. Wade.
When it is not possible to completely prohibit a social evil, it is both moral and effective to limit it as much as possible. When the ideal is beyond our power, it is moral and effective to seek the greatest good possible. Prudence instructs us that an “all-or-something” approach is better than an “all-or-nothing” approach in politics. One of the reasons is that progress is almost always a result of momentum, and momentum—in the face of countervailing obstacles—is often produced by small victories.

A Newsweek blog has probably one of the most uniformed (or intentionally deceptive) posts about the March for Life that I've ever seen. Krista Gesaman takes quotes from Stanley Radzilowski, an officer in the planning unit for the Washington, D.C., police department, and Kristy Maddux, an assistant professor at the University of Maryland, to assert that the majority of people at the March for Life are in their 60's(!!!!) and young women aren't involved in the March because they're not trained to go out and protest.

Only someone who is blind could honestly assert that the majority of Marchers are in their 60s and only someone who is extraordinarily incompetent wouldn't think about how improbable it would be for the majority (50+%) of participants to be in their 60s. The largest contingents at the March are easily young people from high school and college. The streets of Washington, D.C. are teeming with these young people before and after the March.

There's so much goobledy-gook on the RH Reality Check blog today. Robin Marty thinks that because months after her miscarriage her hcg level is high that the definition of pregnancy is complicated. Therefore, whether the unborn are alive or not must be complicated as well. She writes,
We lost that potential life at 8 weeks 2 days, or just over six weeks after conception.
If it was just a "potential life," how did you lose it?

Gloria Feldt's piece is downright weird.
Reproductive choice is our right and also our responsibility, an awesome responsibility. But in an even more profound sense, choice is the human condition. It defines us as humans, and we are in turn defined by the choices we make. Choice is the basis of morality after all, and it is sacrifice as much as it is freedom.
Huh? Choice is the basis for morality? What does that mean? Is she asserting that what we choose to do makes something moral or not?
So this grandmother of 12 dedicates Roe's 37th anniversary to changing the conversation about abortion from a debate about the limits of privacy to to an unwavering affirmation that reproductive choice is a fundamental human and civil right and as a result, a health care service that should be covered for all women in any health reform plan regardless of who is paying the premium.
Does Gloria Feldt really think she can change the conversation about abortion (and get rid of debate) by simply asserting the same choice mumbo-jumbo she's been asserting for years?
Because if we want our beautiful, wonderful, precious granddaughters to have an equal place in this world, then our society must value their choices as much as we grandmothers value their lives.
How stupid is that? We should value people's choices as much as we do their lives?

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Pro-choice Canadian retracts comments about images of aborted children

This is interesting.

Jeanette Doucet, a former board member and volunteer spokeswoman for Canadians for Choice and (former? - yep on her twitter page she's looking for a job) executive director of Planned Parenthood Ottawa, admits she had no clue what she was talking about when she claimed graphic images used by the Canadian Centre for Bio-Ethical Reform were fake.
I described Mr. Ruba’s presentation to Ms Teitel as follows: “The first thing he does is show a movie – it’s a show of gore, images of a fake abortion not medically possible.”

I wish to retract my allegations that The Canadian Centre for Bio-Ethical Reform uses videos which depict a “fake abortion” (which is) not medically possible”. I am not a physician or a nurse or a medical professional of any sort. I have no medical or professional experience in the performance of abortions. I regret any harm my remarks may have done to the reputations of Jose Ruba and The Canadian Centre for Bio-Ethical Reform.

Blogs4Life Conference 2010

Unfortunately, I'm not going to be able to make it to the March this year but if you’re going I’d suggest checking out the Blogs4Life Conference. Last year’s was excellent and I don’t doubt this year’s will be as well.

If you're not going to the March for Life, you will supposedly be able to view a livecast of the Blogs4Life Conference online at the Family Research Council's webpage.

Life Links 1/21/10

Justin Taylor has a video of John Ensign promoting the hope of Heartbeat International to rent a property that is on the same block as four abortion clinics.

Speaking of Heartbeat International, I wonder if Jessica Valenti from Feministing can read. She had a post yesterday of accusing Heartbeat of misusing Virginia’s special prolife license plates funds. She then links to a Washington Post story which says that one agency which Heartbeat lists as a pregnancy care center isn’t a pregnancy care center any longer. Nowhere in the story is there any evidence that Heartbeat provided license plate funds to this now defunct organization. They were apparently eligible for funding but if they never applied for funding since they aren’t a center anymore, I don’t really see how this is a big issue, or an issue at all besides maybe Heartbeat needing to update and edit its list slightly.

Anyway to get in a cheap attack on pregnancy care centers, huh?

Politco has an interesting piece on how Democrats are reacting to Scott Brown’s victory in Massachusetts. All those people voting for change in 2008 wanted a change for the better. I think they’ve come to realize, they got a change for the worse.

Ruby Lee Medina, a woman who allegedly used an abortion pill to abort her 28-week-old child and then put her dead son in a box under the Christmas tree is denying guilt.
“The stuff they’re saying is completely crazy,” Medina said. “They make me sound like some sort of monster who put her son in a box under the Christmas tree. None of that stuff happened.”

The police chief rebutted Medina’s claims.

“I was personally there at the house,” he said.

He also said witnesses have stepped forward alleging they were called to Medina’s house to assist in terminating her pregnancy.

“Her intent was to harm the fetus and try to hide it so that nobody would find it,” the chief said.

In South Korea, a woman and her doctor were arrested for an abortion which was allegedly performed three years ago.

NeuralStem has a press release noting yesterday’s treatment of their first patient with ALS using neural stem cells created from the spinal cord of an aborted child.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Life Links 1/21/10

The Louisiana Department of Health and Hospitals has revoked the license of Gentilly Medical Clinic for Women, an abortion clinic in New Orleans.
The department says Gentilly Medical Clinic for Women has been operating without a nurse on staff, and without either a state license for controlled dangerous substances or federal registration for such drugs.

All three are required under state license standards for abortion clinics.

The clinic is run by Dr. Ifeanyi Charles Anthony Okpalobi (ok-PAH-luh-bee), who has had an abortion clinic in Metairie or New Orleans at least since the mid-1990s.

he Washington Post printed a letter from Michael F. Johnson responding to the obituary of Dr. Henry David, who did abortion related research.
Here is the logical problem: Say 70 percent of the 220 children grew up poorly educated, got divorced, were jailed or used drugs. How does that justify aborting the 30 percent who grew up healthy, happy and productive?

It is obvious from their misuse of this statistic that abortion advocates did not care whether they were advocating killing "potential" kids who would grow up healthy or whose only crime would be being high school drop-outs or divorced. Eugenics, anyone? If we kill all 220, then we are sure to get fewer jailbirds and addicts. The rest are merely "collateral damage."

The Times Record News has a heartfelt story about Terri Otto, a prolife advocate who was recently killed by a truck while jogging.
When Colonial Baptist Pastor Terry Chapman preached against abortion Sunday, he did it at Terri Otto’s urging, even though Otto was not there to hear it.

Three days before Christmas, the 37-year-old mother of three had reminded Chapman in a Facebook message that Roe v. Wade had forever changed America’s morals but that God’s truth about the sanctity of life was rarely proclaimed from the pulpit.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Life Links 1/19/10

A Navy officer has been charged with first degree murder after allegedly killing his pregnant girlfriend because she wouldn't have an abortion.
Investigators pulled the body of 25-year-old Samira Watkins from Bayou Grande on Nov. 3. She had been stuffed in a 36-by-17-inch duffel bag. Her face, from her mouth to her eyes, was covered in layers of duct tape. She was last seen alive Oct. 29.

Zachary Littleton, 25, a master of arms in the Navy, is accused of killing Watkins because she refused an abortion of a child he fathered. He is married and has a child. He had been held without bond.

A woman in Phoenix has been charged with first-degree murder after allegedly leaving her child in a trash bin.
Homicide detectives said Williams knew her child was alive when she gave birth at her parents' house at 19th Avenue and Roeser Road. She stayed with the newborn for moments in the early-morning hours Monday, police said, before she walked the newborn two houses away and placed it in a green city garbage bin.....

Arizona law allows mothers to drop newborns 3 days old or younger at any fire station or hospital without questions or repercussions. Emergency centers, adoption agencies and churches displaying "safe haven" signs also accept newborns.

I really think that some abortion advocates may be clinically insane. For example, here's Rebecca Sive at the RH Reality Check blog asserting that the Senate version of health care reform (which allows the the federal government to subsidize health care plans which include abortion) is like taking women back to the days before Roe v. Wade.
As I’ve previously written in these pages, in lockstep with their male colleagues, the 13 Democratic women U.S. Senators voted for a healthcare "reform" bill that, tragically, takes millions of American women back to pre-Roe v. Wade days, i.e., to daily life in which they will, odds-are, be unable to obtain an abortion, in their very own state.

A former employee is suing Pfizer for providing an unsafe work environment. She claims she was infected with an unknown virus while working with embryonic stem cells.
McClain, who worked at Pfizer for nearly a decade before being terminated in 2005, was employed in Groton's embryonic stem cells program when she said she became ill after being subjected to repeated noxious fumes coming from the hood of a device at Lab B313. She said her supervisor also became ill, but later conspired to cover up the incident, warning her that she "would lose her job if she made too big an issue out of lab safety," according to the suit.

McClain said she asked for a transfer out of Lab B313 because of ongoing health concerns. Later, she developed chronic fatigue symptoms, according to the suit, and discovered that a co-worker had been working next to her with a "dangerous lentivirus material and embryonic stem cells on an open lab bench without biological containment."

Monday, January 18, 2010

Life Links 1/18/10

According to a local CBS news station, Tim Tebow will be featured in Focus on the Family’s prolife Super Bowl ad.
In the spot, the Tebows will share a personal story. "Focus on the Family" hasn't released any details about the spot, but it's believed the commercial is likely to be an anti-abortion message that chronicles Pam Tebow's 1987 pregnancy, according to the Associated Press.

Prolifers heckled Obama during a rally for U.S. Senate candidate Martha Coakley. Newsbusters has the video.

Russia’s health minister has called on Russia to reduce its high abortion rate in order to increase its population.
"The topic of reducing abortions is definitely on today's agenda. This won't solve the birthrate problem 100 percent, but around 20 to 30 percent," Health Minister Tatyana Golikova said, quoted by Russian news agencies.

Golikova said that in 2008 there were 1.714 million births in Russia and 1.234 million abortions. Russia has long had one of the world's highest abortion rates.

John Garvey writes about Martha Coakley’s attack ads against Scott Brown’s conscience protection bill.
Political ads by nature are not sensitive to nuance. Coakley’s ad charges Brown with a lack of “understanding or seriousness” because he “favors letting hospitals deny emergency contraception to rape victims.” But suggesting that we protect the right of conscience does not show a lack of understanding or seriousness. It does not even show a lack of support for abortion - any more than it shows a lack of support for the armed forces to say that we should exempt Quakers. What both show is a decent respect for religious liberty, as admirable and American as the author of the First Amendment.

Friday, January 15, 2010

Friday Baby Blogging

Playing with a couple of her favorite Christmas gifts.

She is fairly consistent in being able to identify Michigan, Kentucky, Louisiana, Texas, Hawaii and Florida. She often identifies states she doesn't know as Alabama.

Life Links 1/15/10

I want to believe some pro-choice bloggers when they claim they think all reproductive choices are equal and they don't have a problem with women choosing to give birth, but then you get reactions like this and this to the cover of In Touch magazine featuring Sarah and Bristol Palin (along with their children) with the headline: "We're glad we choose life."

WORLD Magazine's most recent issue entitled "Pro-Baby" features a number of articles relating to prolife issues.

The New York Daily News has an article on former Congressman and possible Senate candidate Harold Ford Jr.'s changing abortion position.
"To say that I'm pro-life is just wrong," Ford said this week. "I am personally pro-choice and legislatively pro-choice."....

Ford repeatedly called himself "pro-life" during his failed bid for the Senate in 2006. "I'm pro-life, too," he declared in a debate that year, echoing his Republican opponent.

At the National Post, Lorne Gunter explains how the politicization of science has effected how people look at recent research showing women who had an abortion had an 40% increased risk of getting breast cancer.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Center for Reproductive Rights' lame "No Abortion Ban" campaign

I don’t see how the people at the Center for Reproductive Rights could think this new “No Abortion Ban” campaign against the Hyde amendment and its accompanying video is in the least bit persuasive.

A bunch of liberal bloggers don’t want their tax dollars spent on a variety of things. Ooooohhhh..... For some reason they think that means our tax dollars should pay for abortions.

Amanda Marcotte doesn’t want tax dollars going to Blackwater so therefore federal tax dollars should pay for poor women’s abortions.

I know, the logic is impeccable. It's such a great argument I don't where to begin.

The National Rifle Association could make a similar video and then claim federal tax dollars should pay for guns. Yippee! Every poor person gets a free .357.

It’s completely unpersuasive to anyone who is not already in the tank for tax-funded abortions.

They’re so pathetic that they have to call it a “No Abortion Ban” campaign when anybody who’s living in the real world already knows there isn’t an abortion ban in America. Just because the federal government doesn’t pay for abortions, doesn’t mean they’re banned.

I do think this is a somewhat clever fundraising initiative by the Center for Reproductive Rights (CRR). They are a fair number of pro-choicers out there who are disappointed in Planned Parenthood’s and NARAL’s tip-toeing around the Hyde amendment and their unwillingness to increasingly advocate for tax-funded abortion. And a good number of those pro-choicers probably visit pro-choice blogs. So just invite some popular pro-choice bloggers to take part in the video and then they'll link to at their blog. That's some nice free advertising.

CRR will, of course, do nothing to attempt to change the Hyde amendment but they may get a few donations by creating a nice echo chamber video.

Life Links 1/14/10

At the Stand to Reason blog, Alan Shelmon explains how he answers pro-choice objections with the prolife two-step during an event at Central Michigan.
In the end, I was able to fend off the challenges raised against the pro-life view. I used a little organizing tactic to make my job easier. I call it the pro-life two-step. Most objections against the pro-life view can be categorized into one of two groups.

1) They assume the unborn is not a human being.
2) They disqualify the unborn from being a valuable human being based on an arbitrary quality or characteristic.

As I heard each objection, I determined which of the two categories it fell in. Then, I responded accordingly.

From a long New York Times article on the health care reform negotiations comes this tidbit.
Lawmakers apparently spent little time discussing abortion at the White House. The House bill would impose more stringent restrictions than the Senate on insurance coverage of abortion.

A couple in South Africa have been arrested for running an underground abortion clinic.

Sounding off against leading pro-choice organizations

At Daily Kos, a pro-choice blogger named Angry Mouse has an interesting take on the leading pro-choice organizations.
And I'm wondering if FeminismTM is really such a good investment.

You know those emails? The ones from NOW and NARAL and Emily's List that declare, with great urgency and lots of ALL CAPS and exclamation marks, that you must give money right now? Stop this bill! Block this nominee! Protect Roe! Save the Supreme Court! And give, give, give!!!

And since you often agree -- why yes, I do want to stop this bill; why no, I do not want that nominee confirmed -- you click and give. It won't stop this bill or block that nominee, but you will get another email at the next crisis.

And it's always a crisis. Even under a Democratic president, with a Democratic supermajority in Congress, the nation's biggest feminist organizations are in crisis mode, raising money but unable to deliver results. They're just as effective as they were under Bush. Which is to say, Not. At. All.....

In the last decade, we've seen more restrictions on women’s reproductive health, more government-funded sex (mis)education, and budget cuts everywhere -- for after school and early education programs, for employment and training programs, for programs to fight domestic violence -- all of which directly and disproportionately impact women.

And at every step backwards, the major feminist organizations have been powerless to stop it. Or just plain absent....

They’ve failed to frame the debate and influence how we talk about issues that affect women’s lives. While they're still arguing about "choice" -- a word that persuades no one and narrowly focuses the conversation on abortion instead of the full spectrum of reproductive health -- opponents are thinking up clever new phrases to use incessantly and force into the public consciousness until they become law. "Partial birth abortion." "Rights of the preborn." "Culture of life."
While I don't mind pro-choicers dissing leading pro-choice organizations, I don't know how much of this is NARAL and company's fault. I think it's more that those organizations are focusing most of their efforts clinging to what they have because the facts and arguments aren't on their side.

For example, the majority of the population isn't in favor of tax-funded abortions. Maybe NARAL and company could change that with some new slogan or debate framing operation but I doubt it.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Life Links 1/13/10

Investor's Business Daily has an editorial on the California Institute of Regenerative Medicine's (CIRM) move to switch its focus to adult stem cell research and away from embryonic stem cells.
Five years later, ESCR has failed to deliver and backers of Prop 71 are admitting failure. The California Institute for Regenerative Medicine, the state agency created to, as some have put it, restore science to its rightful place, is diverting funds from ESCR to research that has produced actual therapies and treatments: adult stem cell research. It not only has treated real people with real results; it also does not come with the moral baggage ESCR does.

To us, this is a classic bait-and-switch, an attempt to snatch success from the jaws of failure and take credit for discoveries and advances achieved by research Prop. 71 supporters once cavalierly dismissed. We have noted how over the years that when funding was needed, the phrase "embryonic stem cells" was used. When actual progress was discussed, the word "embryonic" was dropped because ESCR never got out of the lab.

Judge Warren Wilbert has decided not to block Scott Roeder's attorneys from using a voluntary manslaughter defense. Scott Roeder is accused of murdering abortionist George Tiller.
Roeder has admitted shooting Tiller on May 31, but said he killed him to protect the unborn. Kansas law defines voluntary manslaughter as the "honest but unreasonable belief" that the use of force was necessary in defense of another. It's called the imperfect self-defense.

A study from the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences estimates that sex-selection abortion in China will lead to a gender imbalance of 24 million more men than women over the next decade.
The report is similar to other studies in recent years that warn of serious social problems because of the gap.

The official Global Times newspaper quoted researcher Wang Guangzhou as saying men with lower incomes would have trouble finding spouses in rural areas, leading to crime problems. The newspaper also said abductions and trafficking of women were widespread in areas with excess numbers of men.

Monday, January 11, 2010

Life Links 1/12/10

The LA Times has an article focusing on how the California Institute of Regenerative Medicine is beginning to turn its focus on stem cell work which is actually close to treating patients, the majority of these projects don't involve embryonic stem cells.
When the institute handed out nearly $230 million in October to 14 research teams, including Aboody's at City of Hope, it was its largest scientific investment by far. But it came with strings attached: In four years, recipients should have a clinical trial request ready to file with the FDA. Only four of the projects involve embryonic stem cells.

It is a significant change in direction for an effort originally designed to bolster research on human embryonic stem cells.

A group in South Dakota hoping to legalize the killing of human embryos for research appears to have been unable to raise the money they needed for a ballot measure so instead they'll again take the issue to the legislature where it's passage is unlikely.

At the Bookworm Room, Bookworm describes how her mind changed on abortion.
By the time I had my second child, I knew, without question, that every “fetus” is a nascent human being. I finally recognized on an emotional level that the zygote created on the first day is the same life as the baby you hold in your arms on the last. It is also the same as the toddler that lisps “I wuv you,” and the pre-teen who says “Y0u’re the best mommy ever.” They all start there, right inside each mother.....

As for me, long time readers of this blog know that, even though intellectually and morally I’m no longer pro-choice, I’m still not entirely pro-life. I accept abortion to protect the mother’s life, and can agree to abortion in cases of rape or incest, even though that’s not fair to the innocent fetus. My problem is that, while I know that convenience abortions are morally wrong, I still get this emotional, lizard-brain feeling of a trapped rat in a cage when I imagine myself being a young woman who finds herself pregnant when she doesn’t want to be. For me, although motherhood has had many rewards, it’s also entailed many sacrifices. When I think of those sacrifices, and then apply them to, say, a 22 year old version of me, or when I imagine my daughter grown, and in the same situation, I still want to cry out “But that’s not fair.” When that happens, though, I squish my lizard-brain, tell myself “Life isn’t fair,” and try to focus on the fetus and not my feelings. I only hope that, if my daughter, before she’s married, ever does come to tell me she’s pregnant, I remember that deeper morality, and give her the right advice.

A blogger named Eric Ashley shares how an ex-girlfriend had an abortion without his knowledge and against his wishes.
If things had gone according to plan, my child would have been born around Christmastime. But obviously, things took a different turn. After a few weeks of getting used to the fact that I was going to be a Dad, I began thinking about names, getting excited for it, and picturing the future as a father. But that rug was ripped out from under me. Now I am stuck with having periodical dreams of dead babies, random crying noises, future images of my child growing up … and worst of all, the one last night in which I was holding my baby before it melted into a pool of blood in my arms.

The trial of Scott Roeder has been delayed a couple of days so a judge can hear arguments on whether Roeder's lawyer could try to use voluntary manslaughter as part of his defense.
Kansas law defines voluntary manslaughter as the "unreasonable but honest belief that circumstances existed that justified deadly force" during an intentional killing.

Chief Deputy Dist. Atty. Kim Parker contended in her motion that case law indicated "the attacker must have an actual fear of an imminent attack, regardless of whether the belief is reasonable."

A speech by Senator Bob Casey (D-PA) was interrupted by prolife protesters upset about his willingness to accept government subsidized health insurance reform which includes abortion coverage.
That push back -- in some ways reminiscent of the town hall fervor that greeted other lawmakers last year -- was on display again this Monday at Casey's rally. Still, the senator stressed his pro-life credentials both during the speech and after its disruptions had been removed.

"One of the points of contention was the issue of abortion," he told the Inquirer. "I was one who voted to stop taxpayer funding of abortion."
Is he referring to the Nelson-Hatch amendment which he voted for but then quickly abandoned when it didn't pass?

A partial prolife conversion

At Racefor2012, Alex Knepper, a self-described atheist, shares how he is becoming pro-life. He used to believe that autonomy was when rights began and the unborn didn’t have rights because they were dependent on their mothers. He still has exceptions for a mother’s health and a first-trimester rape exception. Some excerpts:
What I increasingly found myself unable to account for was why physical autonomy was the basis of rights. And if actuality and not potentiality, too, forms the basis of rights, then what’s the moral issue with simply pulling the plug on a man in a coma? I kept having to ask and re-ask: What really is the basis of rights? But the real tipping point for me was, upon arguing with someone about animal rights, finding myself unable to rationally explain why a profoundly retarded person has any more rights than a dog. And I recoiled with horror when I discovered that Peter Singer, the evil animal liberationist/utilitarian philosopher, was openly spouting the same lines as the basis of rights — self-awareness, autonomy, rationality — and following it to its logical conclusion: we can legally put dogs to death. Why? Because they are not self-aware, they are not rational, they are dependents, they cannot reason. But everything mentioned applies to the profoundly retarded, as well as much of the elderly. That’s the road to involuntary euthanasia. And that’s most definitely a culture of death. With much discomfort, I was forced to admit that these concessions threw most of my reasoning for my pro-choice position out the window.
He also has some pointers for prolifers who want to bring others to the prolife position.
I have four main lessons for all pro-lifers who actually want to convert others rather than merely secure the purity of their own ideology: first of all, ditch the religiosity. Anyone who would have accepted that argument has already done so. Second, ditch the ‘baby-killer’ rhetoric and bring it to the fundamental question of who has human rights and how they are acquired.....

And finally: be patient. My conversion, incomplete, partial, and just beginning as it is, was not a Road-to-Damascus style one. It’s been bubbling under for months, even as I’ve argued with several others from a pro-choice perspective. If you want to convert fence-sitters, you’ll need to have a patient, philosophical discourse. It is possible to convert someone. But you have to know how to do it.

Ann Stone defends herself

Republican for Choice PAC chairwoman Ann Stone has left two comments in a previous post at this blog defending herself and her organization from the report by the Center for Public Integrity.

I find her comments unpersuasive but you can draw your own conclusions.

Life Links 1/11/10

The Wall Street Journal has an articleabout Bart Stupak’s congressional district, abortion and health care.
"I can go back to my district [on some issues] and say I did the best I could, I tried," he said. "But on abortion you can't go back and say, I used to be right to life; now I'm pro choice. That doesn't work; it's either or."

The New York Times discusses jury selection in Scott Roeder’s trial for killing abortionist George Tiller.
Potential jurors who are adamantly opposed to abortion or who favor abortion rights -- and who acknowledge they look at this case with a bias from the start -- will likely be eliminated by the court without either side having to waste a strike, Anthony said. But it's the unstated biases of the rest that pose the biggest challenge to both sides.

Defense attorneys will be looking for the juror who during deliberations might say something like, '''You know this case isn't as simple as just convicting somebody for a murder; we have to think about social implications. ... We have to think about what in the system caused this person to have to come in and do this,''' Anthony said.

In the National Catholic Register, Donald DeMarco shares two stories he recently heard at the Catholic Medical Association conference.

The Daily Mail has an article on plastic surgeons using adult stem cells and fat cells for a kind of non-surgical face lift.
First, around 250ml of fat is removed by liposuction. Stem cells are extracted from half of this fat, while the other half is purified.

The two mixtures are then recombined and injected into the areas of the face - the cheeks, the hollows beneath the eyes and around the temples - that need boosting.

By the time the work is finished, the face will look puffy from all the injections and the swelling will take a good week to settle.

Friday, January 08, 2010

Life Links 1/8/10

At National Review, Wesley Smith lists what he considers that top 10 stories in bioethics over the last decade.

A policeman in New Jersey has been suspended without pay for getting a recruit drunk, having sex with her and getting her pregnant.
Trooper Alexis Hayes, 29, of Berlin, filed a seven-count federal suit Dec. 1, charging Shallcross and six other staties subjected her “to repeated acts of sexual misconduct” and turned her “into an object of disdain ... .”

Jones said Lt. Thomas King has been suspended without pay after being accused by Hayes of plying her with booze during an NJSP detail that attended the funeral for three slain officers in Pittsburgh, Pa. — and then impregnating her.

The shaken Hayes had an abortion and has been on paid sick leave since August.

Legislators in Indiana heard the story of Danielle Steinberger and how she lost her son Drew to a drunk driver.
Danielle Steinberger's voice shook Tuesday as she told an Indiana Senate committee about losing her unborn son, Drew.

"Our lives were changed in a moment because of the recklessness by another person," said Steinberger, supporting a proposed Indiana law that would allow prosecution of drunken drivers whose actions lead to the death of an unborn child.

Steinberger, of Ohio, was eight months pregnant in 2007 when her car was struck by an intoxicated driver in Richmond.

"I woke up three-and-a-half weeks later to find out we had lost our son," Steinberger recalled.

California abortionist ordered to stop performing abortions

A judge in California has ordered abortionist Andrew Rutland to stop taking part in surgeries (including abortion) until a formal hearing is held regarding the death of one of his patients.
Administrative Law Judge James Ahler stopped short of granting a request by attorneys for the Medical Board of California to immediately suspend the license of Dr. Andrew Rutland, opting to temporarily limit his practice instead.

Deputy Atty. Gen. Douglas Lee, at a hearing in San Diego, had argued that Rutland "committed repeated negligent acts in his care and treatment" of a 30-year-old woman who came to a clinic in San Gabriel in August seeking an abortion.

The patient, Ying Chen, had a toxic reaction to a drug administered by Rutland, Lee said, and the doctor did not have the proper equipment or personnel in case of an emergency. In a written decision, Ahler said that Rutland's willingness to perform a second-trimester abortion in a facility inadequately equipped for emergencies "casts doubt on his professional judgment."

Republicans for Choice PAC = Money for Ann Stone

The Center for Public Integrity has a report on the Republicans for Choice PAC and it's not pretty.
In recent years, most of the PAC’s payments have gone to one of three recipients: Capstone Lists (a direct-marketing company owned by Stone), The Stone Group (a political consulting firm owned by Stone), and Ann Stone directly.

Dating back to the beginning of 2005, about 69 percent of the $967,108 spent by the group has gone to those three entities. Both companies and the PAC, along with the not-yet-built National Women’s History Museum (Stone is senior vice president), share space in an Alexandria office building. Though the four entities list different suite numbers on correspondence, filings, and the building’s occupant directory, the four Stone groups share a second-floor office with a door marked “250-260.”

Republicans for Choice pays thousands of dollars each year for office, equipment, and list rental to Capstone Lists. The Stone Group’s services are retained for the PAC’s accounting, mailing production, and website updates (though contains numerous out-of-date and under construction pages).

Stone herself received nearly $250,000 since the start of 2001 as reimbursements for her “travel and entertainment,” “automobile maintenance repairs,” phone, tires, gasoline, and various other expenses.

HT: RH Reality Check blog

Thursday, January 07, 2010

Life Links 1/7/10

The New York Times profiles Congressman Bart Stupak and his difficulties with being a prolife Democrat.
Scott Schloegel, his chief of staff, said wearily, “I can’t tell you how many New Yorkers have called me up and yelled at me about this Stupak guy.”

Those tricky Catholic for Choicers. After reading this press release, you’d think voters in the 4 districts they surveyed favor abortion services being part of the government’s subsidized health care plan. Except if you read the results of the survey, you find some differing results:

For example when asked, “Do you think someone who receives financial help from the government to pay for their health insurance should or should not be allowed to choose a plan that covers each of the following?” the majority of respondents in 3 of the 4 districts (65% in one) they selected respond “Should not” to “Abortion Services.”

Catholics for Choice then asked those who responded “Should not” if they’d “support allowing health insurance plans that receive government subsidies to cover abortion if that coverage was paid for with private funds, not government funds?” The majority of “Should not” respondents still say “Should not” but when combined with the minority of people who favored abortion services being covered by government subsidized insurance, Catholics for Choice claims “voters do not agree with proposed healthcare reform legislation on the issue of insurance coverage for abortion.”

Of course, survey respondents weren’t told that in the accounting scheme (Capps Amendment) favored by pro-choice groups the “private funds” actually become public funds since they go to the federal government and are paid out by the federal government or that every person in the plan would also have to pay at least $1 for abortion coverage. But why mention those little details when your only goal is to convince people abortion coverage is more popular than it really is.

Senator Ben Nelson still can't understand his abandonment of the Stupak amendment and why prolifers oppose his amendment to health care reform.
He said he is puzzled by criticism he has taken about language banning federally funded abortions.

“I cannot understand the level of anger and frustration aimed at me because this language that I put together does ban (federally funded abortions). It absolutely bans it,” he said.

Nelson said the Senate bill stipulates that if an insurer writes a plan with abortion coverage, they must write a similar plan without abortion coverage. People who choose to have an abortion coverage rider on their policy will have to pay that portion of the premium out of their own pockets.

Bob Enyart has always come across as a shady character to me but this seems really bad. I don’t understand how the President and Vice-President of Americans for Life couldn’t prevent the organization they’re supposedly in charge of from creating a new web site they oppose or why Enyart would persist in keeping their names up when they want them removed.

Apparently, telling women in crisis pregnancies that you love them and care for them and that abortion isn’t a fix for their problems is "verbal harassment."

Wednesday, January 06, 2010

Life Links 1/6/10

Dr. Charmaine Yoest, Marjorie Dannenfelser, Kristan Hawkins and David Bereit have an editorial in the Washington Times about abortion and health care reform.
Earlier this month, New York Democratic Rep. Nita Lowey claimed that the Stupak-Pitts Amendment "puts new restrictions on women's access to abortion coverage in the private health insurance market even when they would pay premiums with their own money." Just days later, issued an analysis and said her comments were "false."

Planned Parenthood's cover has been blown. Before the vote on Stupak-Pitts, there were no uproars from the abortion lobby about government funding of abortion in the health care bill. There were no send-your-legislator-a-hanger campaigns. Why? Because they were hoping this issue would slip under the radar and that the bill would pass without any specific exclusion of abortion, which would ensure that abortion would certainly be funded by the government.

The bodies of at least six unborn children were found alongside a river in Nepal.
The fetuses were found wrapped in a polythene bag near the banks of the river. Eyewitnesses said that the fetuses could be anywhere from four to five months.

Police suspect private hospitals and clinics involved in illegal abortion to have disposed off the fetuses and said that they have started an investigation into the case.

In yet another case of RU-486 being used by fathers to end the lives of their unborn children, Jared Merril Ahlstrom has been arrested for unlawful termination of a pregnancy.
According to an arrest affidavit, Ahlstrom wanted his girlfriend to have an abortion after he impregnated her. About a year after his ex-girlfriend lost the baby, he admitted to her that he had drugged her twice to kill the baby. Ahlstrom told the woman he had purchased Misoprostol in Mexico and laced her food with the drug before they went hiking.....

In early January 2009, the woman told Ahlstrom she was still pregnant, and he again told her to have an abortion, but she told him she would not, the affidavit said.

Soon after that, the two met up to go hiking again, this time on Grand Mesa, when she began to have pelvic pain and some bleeding, the affidavit said. About 90 minutes later she went to her doctor, who had her deliver the baby. The baby was stillborn at 16 weeks, but her doctor said he didn’t know why the woman miscarried and that it was “very unusual,” the affidavit said. The woman said she wanted an autopsy done to determine why the baby died, but Ahlstrom protested, saying he wanted their baby cremated, but he did not want the ashes, the affidavit said. The woman had the baby cremated.

John Cherry drops out of the race to be Michigan's governor

Cherry is out, citing lack of funds.

I wouldn't have wanted to defend the Granholm administration's record either.
Polls also showed Cherry attracting well under 50 percent of the Democratic vote. Speculation that his campaign was in trouble heightened last month when his campaign manager resigned and Cherry replaced his chief of staff. An EPIC-MRA of Lansing poll in mid-December showed 39 percent of voters did not recognize Cherry.

Political observers have said the lieutenant governor was damaged by his connection to Gov. Jennifer Granholm, whose popularity has plummeted along with Michigan's economy.

"He would have to run on Jennifer Granholm's record. And that's an indefensible record," said Oakland County Executive L. Brooks Patterson, who considered and then decided against a 2010 gubernatorial bid.

Tuesday, January 05, 2010

Life Links 1/5/10

A new Rasmussen poll finds that 53% of Americans favor a ban on abortion coverage in any health insurance plan0 which gets federal subsidies.
Earlier polling on the abortion issue, using a different question, found similar results. Just over half support the abortion ban, while 13% want mandatory coverage of abortion.

The New York Times has an article on the growth of the prolife movement in South Korea among doctors who formerly performed illegal abortions.
In a country where abortion is both widespread and, with few exceptions, against the law, Dr. Choi and Dr. Shim are hoping to force South Korea’s first serious public discussion of the ethics of the procedure. In November, they and dozens of other obstetricians held a news conference to ask “forgiveness” for having performed illegal abortions.

The group they formed, Gynob, has called on other doctors to declare whether they have performed illegal abortions. In December they set up another organization, Pro-Life Doctors, which tries to discourage women from having abortions and runs a hot line to report clinics that perform them illegally. This month, they plan to begin reporting practitioners of such abortions to the police.

In the UK, the General Medical Counsel is having hearings regarding the case of Dr Saroj Adlakha, a doctor who took her teenage daughter to Spain for an abortion at 31 weeks.
Records allegedly show that Adlakha contacted the Ginemedex Clinic to book an appointment and bought airline tickets to Barcelona days after her daughter was turned away from the Calthorpe Clinic.

She told her practice receptionist that she could lose her license for helping her daughter arrange the abortion after returning from Spain, the tribunal heard.

"She must have been very well aware of the seriousness and the potential consequences to her as a doctor," Heather Norton, representing the GMC, told the tribunal.

"The mere fact, we would suggest, that Dr Adlakha had to take her daughter out of the jurisdiction to obtain a termination, strongly suggests that, whether correctly or not, Dr Adlakha believed that it would not have been possible to obtain a lawful termination in this country."

On Britain's Celebrity Big Brother, former Hollywood madam Heidi Fleiss apparently said, "Thank God for abortion."

Monday, January 04, 2010

Pushing tax-funded abortion = The cure to pro-choice ills?

Frances Kissling, former head of Catholics for a Free Choice, has a piece on Alternet which attempts to be a battle cry for overturning the Hyde Amendment.

She basically blames the pro-choice movement for not focusing enough attention on Hyde and thinks Hyde passed because pro-choicers were too busy fighting to prevent the Human Life Amendment from passing. She laments that it doesn’t appear that health care reform will pay for the abortions of women on Medicaid.

After reading it, I’m left wondering how Kissling thinks the overturning of the Hyde Amendment is going to happen. She calls on legislators to introduce such a measure and pro-choice PACs not to support candidates unless they co-sponsor this legislation but she doesn’t seem to grasp that the pro-choice movement doesn’t have the votes to repeal the Hyde Amendment.

On one hand she laments how the health care reform debate hasn’t been a sad story for abortion advocates but somehow she thinks pushing for federally-funded abortions is going to “help build the base of support needed to save legal abortion in the United States.”

Life Links 1/4/10

New data from the Illinois Public Health Department shows that abortions in Illinois have reached a ten-year high.
In 2008, the most recent year for which data are available, figures from the Illinois Public Health Department show that 47,717 abortions were performed statewide.

That represents a 5 percent increase from 2007. And it's the most abortions in Illinois in a year since 1998, when 49,403 women were reported to have had abortions.
Prolifers are pointing to the new Planned Parenthood facility in Aurora as a possible explanation.
Abortion statistics in three of the four counties straddling Aurora saw the number of women seeking the procedure jump dramatically in 2008, state records show.

There was a 73 percent jump in abortions for women in Kendall County, the home of 194 women who had an abortion in 2008. A year earlier, 112 women in Kendall County had an abortion.

In Kane County, the number of women who obtained abortions in 2008 rose 38 percent, increasing to 1,145 from 832 in 2007.

And in Will County, the number of women who obtained abortions grew by 22 percent. In 2008, 1,161 Will County women got abortions, compared with 953 in 2007.

At the web site of the Catholic Family & Human Rights Institute, Samantha Singson summarizes International Planned Parenthood’s latest annual report.
IPPF’s overall income for 2008 was US$119.7 million, down from over $120 million the previous year. While IPPF's total financial intake dipped, its abortion business boomed. The organization provided almost 428,000 “abortion services” to young people alone, with a staggering 1,134,549 total number of such services – almost double the number from 2007 – across the globe.

Why is Massachusetts Citizens for Life supporting Scott Brown, a U.S. Senate candidate who supports Roe v. Wade? I know that true prolife candidates are hard to find in Massachusetts and Martha Coakley wants to replace Barbara Boxer as Senator Abortion but prolife organizations need to have some line in the sand.

The abortion rate in Israel has fallen 10% since 2000.
Israel requires all women seeking abortions to get approval from hospital abortion panels, which approved 98 percent of all requests in 2008, consistent with the approval rate seen in previous years. Last year, 19,594 abortions were carried out in Israel....

The reason given for more than half (54 percent) of the abortions approved in Israel in 2008 was attributed to pregnancy out of wedlock, adultery or incest. About one-fifth of abortions were approved due to concern for the physical or mental health of the mother; one-fifth due to possible harm to the fetus; and one-tenth due to the age of the mother (either younger than 17 or older than 40).

Friday, January 01, 2010

Life Links 1/1/10

David Prentice writes in the Family Research Council's blog on the call for more embryonic stem cell lines created from African-American embryos.
Of course, it’s also not a surprise that the embryonic stem cell researchers want more embryos, especially minority embryos, from whom to wring their embryonic stem cells. It’s never enough with some of these people. Supposedly having at their disposal several hundred new hESC lines was satisfactory, plus the open-ended promise from President Obama of as many fertility-clinic embryos as they would like. But Michigan’s Sean Morrison
“will also make it a priority to derive new embryonic stem cell lines from underrepresented groups, including African-Americans.”

So, apparently Prof. Morrison is going to be stalking minority couples at IVF clinics, targeting their embryos for his lab. Or soliciting egg and sperm donors to create custom-made embryos specifically for the experiments. Or trying to make cloning work. All of this is legal in the U.S. But not all of this can garner federal taxpayer dollars.
Thankfully, human cloning is illegal in Michigan and Proposal 2 only legalized research on "leftover" IVF embryos. It looks like Morrison will be left to stalking African-American IVF couples or trying to overturn Michigan's human cloning law.

Prentice also notes that a much easier solution would be to get induced pluripotent stem cells from African-American patients.

Wesley Smith explains the Montana Supreme Court decision on assisted suicide. The decision didn't claim physician assisted suicide was a constitutional right but did say it was legal under current law.

At FireDogLake, Jane Hamsher is not at all happy that pro-choice Congresswoman Rose DeLauro is planning on supporting the Nelson abortion language in health care reform.

A woman from Michigan may get less time in jail after an appeals court ruled her 9-18 year sentence for killing her newborn daughter (she plead guilty to manslaughter) was too harsh.