Hat tip to Ed Morrissey at Hot Air. For a second year in a row Gallup finds that more Americans call themselves pro-life than pro-choice.
The conservative shift in Americans’ views on abortion that Gallup first recorded a year ago has carried over into 2010. Slightly more Americans call themselves “pro-life” than “pro-choice,” 47% vs. 45%, according to a May 3-6 Gallup poll. This is nearly identical to the 47% to 46% division found last July following a more strongly pro-life advantage of 51% to 42% last May.
While the two-percentage-point gap in current abortion views is not significant, it represents the third consecutive time Gallup has found more Americans taking the pro-life than pro-choice position on this measure since May 2009, suggesting a real change in public opinion. By contrast, in nearly all readings on this question since 1995, and each survey from 2003 to 2008, more Americans called themselves pro-choice than pro-life.
According to two-year averages of these results since 2001, Republicans have become more likely to call themselves pro-life since polling conducted in 2003/2004, as have Republican-leaning independents since 2005/2006. Independents who lean to neither party also became more likely to call themselves “pro-life” between 2003/2004 and 2005/2006, but have since held steady.
Democrats’ self-identification with the pro-life position has moved in the other direction, declining from 37% in 2003/2004 to 31% in 2009/2010. Among independents who lean Democratic, there has been no movement in either direction.
Hattip to Rich Leonardi at Ten Reasons. I have long thought that the way we will win the battle against abortion is by simple persistence. Pro-lifers will never give up until we prevail and abortion is banned. Tommy Behan is an example to us all:
T. ANDREW DEANERY — The White House staffers who open President Barrack Obama’s mail are likely well aware of Tommy Behan’s pro-life stance.
Behan, a member of St. Maximilian Kolbe Parish and a sophomore at Lakota East High School, has written the president every day since Obama’s inauguration asking him to change his position on abortion. The 16-year-old has handwritten and mailed more than 430 letters.
“His stance is the most radical pro-choice one for a president who has ever held office,” said Behan. “In the first letter I made a vow to never stop writing until he changed it or he’s out of office.”
The teen usually writes in the evenings. He avoids email, preferring to show his passion with the extra effort a handwritten letter requires. His parents supply the pens, paper and stamps. If Behan gets pressed for time and misses a day, he’ll write additional letters until he is caught up. The letters are sometimes mailed in batches.
Behan begins each letter by telling Obama how many times he has written before. Then the teen argues the constitutionality of abortion, talks about justice for the unborn and tells of the lives that have been lost. His stance is straightforward: Life begins at conception and comes before liberty, he said.
“I keep building on my argument,” Behan said. “It really upsets me how some people choose to have an abortion when others really want to have children.”
One of six children, Behan has seen his sister and her husband suffer miscarriages. That experience has made him more passionate and given him more resolve to try to get Obama to publicly change his position.
After about three months of writing Behan received a form letter from the White House. There have been about 17 more since. The generic replies thank him for writing and sometimes acknowledge the topic.
The teen also debated the issue in an editorial in Spark, a well-known student magazine at Lakota East.
“He’s always had a deep respect for life,” said Behan’s mother, Jude Behan. “We’re very proud of him. This was not initiated by us.”
She said her son is dedicated to the letter-writing campaign and is self-motivated. Continue reading
The White House on Friday announced that Dawn Johnsen has withdrawn her nomination by Obama to head of the Office of Legal Counsel. This was after a year during which it became increasingly clear that Republicans in the Senate, joined by some Democrats, would never vote to confirm her, and that the administration lacked the votes to break a filibuster. Continue reading
In the pro-life cause there are many ways to serve: volunteering at a crisis pregnancy center, speaker’s bureau, education, political action, the list could go on at considerable length. One of the toughest tasks for pro-lifers is bearing witness to the sacredness of innocent human life outside of an abortion clinic. The pro-life protestors are usually subject to verbal attack and sometimes physical assault. It takes brave people to volunteer for such duty.
On November 24, Sarah Winandy and Leah Winandy, mother and daughter, were standing outside of the abortion clinic in Duluth, Minnesota, calling itself the Duluth Building for women. Part of the Pro-Life Ministry of Duluth, they were passing out pamphlets and protesting abortion.
Mechelle Hall, a pregnant woman, walked towards Leah Winandy. Hall pulled out a knife and waved it at Leah, and said, “Don’t come near me.” Leah told her, “Please don’t kill your baby. Fear God.” She approached Hall, “Look and listen to your ultrasound.” Hall came towards Leah and held the knife to her throat. Leah was unhurt and Mechelle Hall was arrested. Here is a video report on the incident. Continue reading
Laura Chinchilla was elected President of Costa Rica on February 7, 2010. She is the first woman to be elected to that office. She is a member of the Partido Nacional Liberacion (National Liberation Party) which belongs to the Socialist International. Now normally I am as fond of socialists as I was fond of the castor oil that my sainted mother regularly made me swallow a spoon full of daily when I was a little boy. However, Chinchilla is my type of socialist.
She ran on a get tough on crime platform. She is a devotee of free market economic policies. She was the only mainstream politician in Costa Rica to take part in a March for Life and Family on November 28, 2009 in Costa Rica which was organized by a coalition of church leaders. She is an ardent foe of abortion and opposes legalizing the human pesticide known as the morning after pill. She opposes altering the Constitution of Costa Rica which, while enshrining religious freedom, proclaims that Costa Rica is a Roman Catholic nation. Many of her supporters carried rosaries at her rallies and she always has her rosary with her. After her election she asked that all Costa Ricans ask strength of the patroness of Costa Rica, Our Lady of the Angels, and went to the shrine of Our Lady of the Angels to pray. Continue reading
Hattip to Cassy Fiano at Hot Air. This will come as old news to pro-lifers who attempt to spread the pro-life message at abortion clinics, but abortion clinic employees, volunteers and escorts are usually intensely abusive of pro-lifers, sometimes resorting to physical violence. These incidents are usually ignored by the media, most of which is completely in the tank for the pro-abort cause.
According to a police report filed at the scene, supported by several witnesses, the following interaction took place between Miss Rose and the uniformed Planned Parenthood escort:
Rose, from the public sidewalk: “Sir, are you familiar with the abortion procedure?”
Escort approaches Rose rapidly from Planned Parenthood parking lot, says, “You idiot. You’ve caused so much trouble. You piece of crap.”
Rose offers to show Escort a picture: “Can I show you a picture of what it really does to a baby?”
The Escort strikes Miss Rose’s hand, knocking literature and Bible to the ground. Rose steps further back on sidewalk, Escort steps towards Rose.
Escort, visibly shaking, says, “It’s a woman’s choice!”
Rose says, “What about the baby’s choice?”
Escort says, “It’s not a baby!” Escort turns around and walks away.Police were called and interviewed the victim and several witnesses. Rose sustained no injuries from the attack. Charges of assault and battery are pending. There have been no apologies.
Live Action maintains a strong commitment to non-violent public discourse. We expect Planned Parenthood will respond to their escort’s attack by publicly disavowing the use of violence.
Here is Louisiana Congressman Joseph Cao, the only Republican to vote for the recent health care reform bill, speaking on the floor of the House of Representatives:
h/t: Mirror of Justice.
[N]o one in the world who prizes liberty and human rights can feel anything but a strong kinship with America. Yours is the one great nation in all of history that was founded on the precept of equal rights and respect for all humankind, for the poorest and weakest of us as well as the richest and strongest.
As your Declaration of Independence put it, in words that have never lost their power to stir the heart: “We hold these truths to be self evident: that all men are created equal; that they are endowed by their creator with certain inalienable rights; that among these are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness…” A nation founded on these principles holds a sacred trust: to stand as an example to the rest of the world, to climb ever higher in its practical realization of the ideals of human dignity, brotherhood, and mutual respect. Your constant efforts in fulfillment of that mission, far more that your size or your wealth or your military might, have made America an inspiration to all mankind.
It must be recognized that your model was never one of realized perfection, but of ceaseless aspiration. From the outset, for example, America denied the African slave his freedom and human dignity. But in time you righted that wrong, albeit at an incalculable cost in human suffering and loss of life.
Your impetus has almost always been toward a fuller, more all embracing conception and assurance of the rights that your founding fathers recognized as inherent and God-given.
Yours has ever been an inclusive, not an exclusive, society. And your steps, though they may have paused or faltered now and then, have been pointed in the right direction and have trod the right path. The task has not always been an easy one, and each new generation has faced its own challenges and temptations. But in a uniquely courageous and inspiring way, America has
Yet there has been one infinitely tragic and destructive departure from those American ideals in recent memory. Continue reading
Hattip to Creative Minority Report. Economic times are tough and they are especially tough in Michigan, so the Northland Family Planning Centers of Michigan are touting their contract killing of the unborn in the above video as “sacred work” , and they assure us that they “believe in the goodness” of their work. Well, I guess it beats saying that they kill unborn kids for a living for cash on the barrel head. A nice video to recall when a pro-abort argues that no one is pro-abortion.
Of course, what would an ad for an abortuary be without a quote from the late Tiller the Killer?
Abortion is not a cerebral or reproductive issue. Abortion is a matter of the heart. For until one understands the heart of a woman, nothing else about abortion makes any sense at all. Dr. George Tiller 1941-2009
Who knew? I always thought that Tiller the Killer, late term abortionist, did it for the money that made him a very rich man. Instead, he did it because he understood the hearts of women! (Except, I guess, for the little females he slew.)
For a rather more accurate view of what the abortion business is all about, here is a video regarding the change of heart of Abby Johnson, a former director of a Planned Parenthood, a/k/a Worse Than Murder, Inc, clinic.
As to the temporary restraining order mentioned in the video, a judge voided it after a hearing, so Abby Johnson is free to speak. Her testimony is important, and it also reminds us that even the most hardened advocates of abortion may be touched by grace and find themselves as our allies for the unborn. Pray that the makers of the video at the beginning of this post may experience such a conversion.
Faithful readers of this blog will recall this post here discussing the Bishop of Providence Thomas J. Tobin taking Patrick Kennedy, Teddy’s son, to task for attacking the Church over ObamaCare. Now the Bishop has written the following letter to Congressman Kennedy:
Dear Congressman Kennedy:
“The fact that I disagree with the hierarchy on some issues does not make me any less of a Catholic.” (Congressman Patrick Kennedy)
Since our recent correspondence has been rather public, I hope you don’t mind if I share a few reflections about your practice of the faith in this public forum. I usually wouldn’t do that – that is speak about someone’s faith in a public setting – but in our well-documented exchange of letters about health care and abortion, it has emerged as an issue. I also share these words publicly with the thought that they might be instructive to other Catholics, including those in prominent positions of leadership.
For the moment I’d like to set aside the discussion of health care reform, as important and relevant as it is, and focus on one statement contained in your letter of October 29, 2009, in which you write, “The fact that I disagree with the hierarchy on some issues does not make me any less of a Catholic.” That sentence certainly caught my attention and deserves a public response, lest it go unchallenged and lead others to believe it’s true. And it raises an important question: What does it mean to be a Catholic? Continue reading
Last night all but one, who voted present, of the House Republicans voted in favor of the Stupak Amendment in spite of knowing that its passage made likely the final passage of ObamaCare. Here is a statement of the House Republican Leadership issued last night before either the Stupak amendment or ObamaCare was passed:
House Republican Leader John Boehner (R-OH), House Republican Whip Eric Cantor (R-VA) and House Republican Conference Chairman Mike Pence (R-IN) issued the following statement in support of an amendment offered by Representatives Bart Stupak (D-MI) and Joseph Pitts (R-PA) that would prohibit federal funding of abortions under the House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s (D-CA) health care plan: “We believe in the sanctity of life, and the Stupak-Pitts Amendment addresses a moral issue of the utmost concern. It will limit abortion in the United States. Because of this, while we strongly and deeply oppose the underlying bill, we decided to stand with Life and support Stupak-Pitts.
The song is called Magnificent by the musical group U2. It was a minor hit in both the United Kingdom and the United States in A.D. 2009 (and a major hit in Greece).
Some entrepreneurial YouTuber recreated the music video and turned it into a pretty decent contemporary ‘Christian’ music video. The music video now celebrates the Triune God, the Eucharist, of course the love of God all coupled within a strong Pro-Life message. There’s even a guest appearance of His Holiness, Pope Benedict XVI!
(Biretta Tip: Meg)
If you thought the modern world couldn’t get any more messed-up in its understanding of reproduction and the family, you need turn no further than the WSJ weekend section, and a feature article on people hiring surrogate mothers from India to bring their children to term.
According to Hrishikesh Pai, a Mumbai-based in-vitro fertilization specialist and vice-president of the Indian Society for Assisted Reproduction, India now has about 350 facilities that offer surrogacy as a part of a broader array of infertility-treatment services, triple the number in 2005. Last year, Dr. Pai says, about 1,000 pregnancy attempts using surrogates were made at these clinics. This year, he estimates the figure will jump to 1,500, with about a third of those made on behalf of parents from outside India who hired surrogates.
Rudy Rupak, president of PlanetHospital, a California-based medical-tourism company, says that in the first eight months of this year he sent 600 couples or single parents overseas for surrogacy, nearly three times the number in 2008 and up from just 33 in 2007. All of the clients this year went to India except seven who chose Panama. Most were from the U.S.; the rest came from Europe, the Middle East and Asia, mostly Japan, Vietnam, Singapore and Taiwan.
Mr. Rupak says that because of growing demand from his clients for eggs from Caucasian women, he’s started to fly donors to India from the former Soviet republic of Georgia, where he has connections with clinics. The first woman arrived last month. A PlanetHospital package that includes an Indian egg donor costs $32,500, excluding transportation and hotel expenses for the intended parent or parents to travel to India. A package with eggs from a Georgian donor costs an extra $5,000.
For the Indian surrogates themselves, it’s an experience often fraught with emotional conflict. In most cases, the egg comes either from the woman who wants to become a mother but can’t carry a child, or from an egg donor. The egg is then fertilized with sperm from the intended father, or a sperm donor, and implanted in the womb of a surrogate who bears the child. Sometimes, no money changes hands, particularly when a friend or relative acts as the surrogate. Alternatively, it’s a commercial transaction, which is almost always the case in India for would-be parents from overseas.
Still, it’s a way to raise money in sometimes desperate circumstances. Take Sudha, a 25-year-old mother of two who now works as a maid in Chennai earning $20 a month. She owes moneylenders about $2,700, borrowed to pay bribes to secure a government job as a streetsweeper, which never materialized. A neighbor told her she could earn about $2,000 at a local clinic by bearing a child for an infertile couple. She gave birth in July 2008 — and is haunted by the memory. “Whenever I have free time and I lie down, I think about the child. I pray that the child is safe and happy and is taken care of well.”
Sometimes it’s all in the phrasing. The other day I read a mention of the annual Red Mass celebrated in Washington DC which quoted Justice Ginsburg’s explanation of why she no longer attends (though Justice Breyer, also Jewish, attends). The quote in full:
“Before every session, there’s a Red Mass,” Ginsburg said. “And the justices get invitations from the cardinal to attend that. And a good number of the justices show up every year. I went one year, and I will never go again, because this sermon was outrageously anti-abortion.”
Outrageously anti-abortion. Well.
Father John Jenkins, C.S.C., released a message to the University of Notre Dame family outlining two pro-life initiatives to recompense for the scandal of awarding President Obama an honorary degree.
1. Father Jenkins plans to attend the March for Life Anniversary of Roe v. Wade event in Washington D.C.
2. Establish a Task Force on Supporting the Choice for Life.
These two initiatives are a good first start in adhering to the teachings of the Catholic Church established by Jesus Himself.
Salvete AC readers!
Buckle Up! Because here are today’s Top Picks in Catholicism:
Written in Hebrew script, the pure silver amulets were discovered in the ancient tomb complex of Jerusalem’s Ketef Hinnom. Archaeologist Gabriel Barkay wrote the discovery in the Biblical Archeology Review.
“Life with a ‘Quiverfull’ family: the story behind the story” – Reuters journalist Rick Wilking shares his experiences documenting the lives of a Christian “Quiverfull” family who have 15 children due to their belief that all family planning is best left in the hands of God.