Tag Archives: abortion

Presidential Candidates’ Stand on Life Issues

Live Action, known for its investigative journalism,came out with a guide to the position of the candidates running for president and vice-president. Those candidates are Republicans Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan as well as Democrat incumbents Barak Obama and Joe Biden.

After stating each candidate’s stand of the right to life, the guide present historical statements and positions of each candidate to prove the validity of each candidates views.

To read or download a copy of the guide, go to http://liveactionadvocate.org/LAFLYER.pdf.

US Experts Testify on Dangers of Disabilities Treaty

By Lisa Correnti

(WASHINGTON, DC – C-FAM) A panel of experts warned U.S. lawmakers this week that the UN Disabilities treaty could threaten the rights of parents and advance abortion rights.

“This treaty… would allow unelected bureaucrats in Switzerland to determine the meaning of the words ‘disability’ and ‘sexual reproductive health,’ said Congressman Jeff Duncan following a briefing to the House Sovereignty Caucus. “Such ambiguity could lead to frivolous litigation and advancing abortion as a ‘human right.’”

The Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) passed the Senate Foreign Affairs subcommittee in July. An amendment by Senator Marco Rubio clarifying that the treaty cannot be used to advance abortion was supported by all Republicans senators but was defeated when all Democratic senators voted against it.

Dr. Susan Yoshihara explained to the Caucus how “sexual and reproductive health” was inserted in the treaty despite a lack of consensus. The Director of the International Organizations Research Group at C-FAM participated in the UN negotiations on CRPD.

“In order to get this term into the Disabilities Treaty, proponents had to circumvent the objections of 23 nations, resorting to such tactics as secret meetings and venues where not all delegations were allowed” she said.

Some U.S. senators support the treaty on the belief that pro-life protections exist since the term “reproductive health” is mentioned as a category of non-discrimination and not as a right. Dr. Yoshihara cautioned against this false sense of security.

“This should not allay the fears of pro-life lawmakers or make them think that this treaty will not be used to advance a right to abortion,” she said. “The Women’s Convention, CEDAW, never mentions abortion or ‘reproductive health’ nor does ICCPR [International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights], but their committees have pressured more than 90 countries over 120 times to liberalize abortion.”

Treaty proponents say “reservations” agreed to by the U.S. Senate will protect against any problems. The experts, however, called reservations inadequate. Dr. Yoshihara recalled a U.S. Supreme Court decision (Roper) in which the court “cited a portion of the ICCPR that the United States had specifically rejected in a reservation.”

Michael Farris, chairman of the Home School Legal Defense Association, warned that the CRPD threatens the rights of parents of special needs children. “Government agents, and not parents, are being given the authority to decide all educational and treatment issues for disabled children.”

“Signing the treaty is an empty gesture” said Steven Groves with the Heritage Foundation. “Current U.S. law meets or exceeds the provisions of the Convention, and mere membership in the Convention will not convince the international community that America protects the rights of its disabled citizens,” he continued.

Concerns about the CRPD were expressed by the Holy See delegation when the UN adopted it in 2006. Explaining why they could not support it, the delegation stated, “It is surely tragic that…the same Convention created to protect persons with disabilities from all discrimination in the exercise of their rights, may be used to deny the very basic right to life of disabled unborn persons.”

The U.S. does not need to ratify the treaty to gain moral authority, noted Rep. Duncan and his co-chair of the Sovereignty Caucus Rep. Doug Lamborn. “America is already one of the world’s leaders in advancing the cause of those with disabilities,” said Lamborn.

Resistance to the treaty is growing. A letter from congressmen urging senators to reject the CRPD now has 49 signatures.

Lisa Correnti is Director of Operations at C-FAM. Her article first appeared in the Friday Fax, an internet report published weekly by C-FAM (Catholic Family & Human Rights Institute), a New York and Washington DC-based research institute (http://www.c-fam.org/).

Pro-life Doctors Movement and South Korea’s Abortion Ban

By Susan Yoshihara, Ph.D.

(NEW YORK – C-FAM) South Korea’s highest court upheld that country’s 59-year abortion ban last week, amidst a surge of pro-life activism led by former abortionists. On Wednesday the government reversed a decision that would have lifted the prescription requirement for emergency contraception.

The Associated Press’ brief report on the court ruling, picked up by several major media outlets, omitted mention the pro-life influence in South Korea, pointing only to government concern over Korea’s low birthrate.

What dramatically changed dynamics in Korea was that the government, which had for decades encouraged doctors to perform abortion as a means of population control to foster economic growth, expressed official support for a pro-life doctor’s group. Because of that, “the political terrain of abortion politics in South Korea is changing drastically,” researcher Young-Gyung Paik said.

Young-Gyung’s 2012 paper showed that pro-life activism, long marginalized as “religiously driven,” suddenly gained prominence: “It was only after the formation of the group of doctors called ‘Pro-life Doctors’ in 2009 that the contentious issue of abortion started to gain public attention in South Korea.” “In [the doctors’] opinion, the South Korea’s low fertility rate has originated from its high abortion rate, which, in turn, was the result of the immoral and profit-oriented conducts of Korean medical doctors,” Young-Gyung found.

Whereas Korean media painted the pro-life activism as a “war between doctors,” Young-Gyung’s extensive interviews with both sides found it was fostered by the development of neo-natal medical technologies, decreased interest in embryonic stem cell research, the rise of disability activism, as well as concern about depopulation.

According to a paper by the Pro-life Doctor’s Association, the winners from the court’s decision are Korea’s women. “Most abortions used to be easily performed because doctors or women undergoing abortions were not prosecuted even though abortion was illegal,” the paper said. Even after the country had become economically successful, the “trend of encouraging abortion was prevalent in our society and as a result, women used to be compelled by social pressure to undergo abortion.”

“I bought into the government’s argument that it was OK to do this,” Shim Sang-duk told the Los Angeles Times in 2010. The doctor received death threats and took a significant pay cut after abandoning the practice of abortion. “[I thought] it was good for the country. It boosted the economy,” said Shim, who founded the Korean Gynecological Physicians’ Association to encourage other doctors to stop performing abortions and call on the government to enforce the law’s penalties.

An eight-judge panel needed six votes in to declare the law unconstitutional but only got four, which has spurred hot debate in the Korean media, a spokesman for the doctor’s association told the Friday Fax. An opinion piece in The Korea Times Thursday criticized the government on its decision not to allow emergency contraception to be sold over the counter as bowing to “doctors and religious groups.”

In 2010 a midwife who helped perform an abortion at 6 weeks gestation went on trial and then challenged the law’s constitutionality, especially the law’s maximum two-year jail term for medical practitioners. The constitutional court argued that a lighter punishment would only make abortion more rampant, Radio Australia reported.

Abortion has been illegal in South Korea with exceptions for rape, incest or severe genetic disorders since 1953, but the law has been routinely flouted.

Kwak Seung-jun, chairman of the Presidential Council for Future & Vision, told reporters in 2010: “There are few people who realize abortion is illegal. We must work to create a mood where abortion is discouraged.”

Susan Yoshihara is Senior Vice President for Research at the Catholic Family and Human Rights Institute (C-FAM), a New York and Washington DC-based research institute (http://www.c-fam.org/). Her article was first appeared in the Friday Fax, an internet report published weekly by C-FAM.

Women Lawyer’s Perspective On Legitimate Rape

Rebecca Kiessling is a family law attorney who wrote several informative posts/articles about the origin and legal problems of legitimate and illegitimate rape in abortion and rape laws. Her articles show how liberals are distorting Congressman Akin’s “use of legitimate rape” for political advantage. In fact, Akin was not claiming some rapes to be legitimate but rather that it was his understanding that the medical profession made that distinction.

Kiessling’s post addressing the unfortunate remark by Congressman Akin is titled “Another Good100% Pro-Life Candidate Flubs on the Rape Question” and her article about the legal issues related to abortion and legitimate rape is titled “woman Who Cried Wolf: The Illegitimate Rape Claim Behind Roe v Wadw,” both are worth reading.

New Analysis Of World Maternal Mortality Confirms Health Care, Not Abortion, Key Factor in Saving Lives

Improved medical care, not abortion, is the solution to the problem of maternal deaths in the developing world, according to a new analysis of research from Chile and other sources. The analysis was released today at the World Health Assembly (WHA) in Geneva by Minnesota Citizens Concerned for Life Global Outreach (MCCL GO) and National Right to Life Educational Trust Fund (NRLC), an NGO based in Washington, D.C. Leaders of both organizations called for a renewed emphasis on improving health care for women as the only sure means of reducing maternal mortality.

“We have known for decades that most maternal deaths can be prevented with adequate nutrition, basic health care, and good obstetric care throughout pregnancy, at delivery, and postpartum,” said Jeanne Head, R.N., National Right to Life vice-president for international affairs and U.N. representative. “Yet some in the international community have focused their resources primarily on legalizing abortion at the expense of women’s lives.”

“Our analysis presents clear, factual evidence to repudiate the claim that legalized abortion reduces maternal mortality,” said MCCL GO Executive Director Scott Fischbach.

The analysis, “Women’s Health & Abortion,” compares the impact of improved medical care and legalized abortion on maternal mortality rates in several countries. Maternal deaths declined sharply in the United States through the 1930s and 1940s, for example, coinciding with advancements in maternal health care, obstetric techniques, antibiotics and in the general health status of women. This occurred long before the widespread legalization of abortion.

Chile offers the most striking proof that maternal mortality is unrelated to the legal status of abortion. Chile sharply reduced its maternal mortality rate even after its prohibition of abortion in 1989, and now has the lowest maternal mortality rate in Latin America. Even maternal deaths due specifically to abortion declined—from 10.78 abortion deaths per 100,000 live births in 1989 to 0.83 in 2007, a reduction of 92.3 percent after abortion was made illegal.
In the developing world, the danger of legalized abortion is profound, the analysis found. Ms. Head explains: “Women generally at risk because they lack access to a doctor, hospital, or antibiotics before abortion’s legalization will face those same circumstances after legalization. And if legalization triggers a higher demand for abortion, as it has in most countries, more injured women will compete for those scarce medical resources. The number of abortion-related maternal deaths may actually increase.”

MCCL GO and National Right to Life called upon the WHA to focus its resources on the improvement of women’s health care in the developing world.

“We urge the World Health Assembly to adopt measures to significantly reduce maternal mortality in the developing world by improving women’s health care,” Mr. Fischbach added. “We call upon the WHA to save lives, not expend endless energy and resources in areas where there is profound disagreement, such as the legalization of abortion.”

Amnesty International Uses Maternal Deaths to Push for Unrestricted Abortion

By Elizabeth Charnowski

(New York – C-FAM) Amnesty International, a human rights organization that used to be abortion neutral, is now using the problem of maternal mortality to advocate for abortion. In a new report, ostensibly on medical care for maternal health, Amnesty calls on governments to repeal abortion laws and conscience protection for medical workers who may object. They also call for public health systems to train and equip health care providers to perform abortions.

Amnesty’s “Maternal Health is a Human Right” campaign focuses attention on four countries: Sierra Leone, Burkina Faso, Peru, and the United States. Amnesty argues that maternal mortality will decrease if it is treated as a human rights issue, if costs to health care are covered by governments, and if a right for women to control their reproductive and sex lives is established.

The United States’ maternal mortality ratio is only 21 deaths per 100,000 live births compared to Burkina Faso’s 300 and Sierra Leone’s 890 deaths per 100,000 births.

The Amnesty’s report that in Sierra Leone, Burkina Faso, and Peru, that women face death because of inadequate medical conditions and corruption. But then the report goes further arguing that abortion is needed, too.

Even though Amnesty says the United States has the best health care system in the world, the group urges that abortion services be expanded and obstacles eliminated, including what they call racial and cost barriers. They say abortion services are restricted for Native Americans and women on Medicaid since abortions are only paid for by the government in cases of rape, incest, or when the woman’s life is in danger. These women can still obtain an abortion, but it would not be covered by federal insurance.

Amnesty takes issue with restraints on abortion, including conscience clauses and laws that allow health care providers and institutions to decline to commit an abortion if it is against their religious or moral beliefs.

Elsewhere Amnesty has called for small steps towards the legalization of abortion. The group submitted a report to the UN Committee on the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW) calling for the legalization of abortion in Mexico for women who are pregnant as a result of rape or incest.

According to its official position, “Amnesty International believes that where women’s access to safe and legal abortion services and information is restricted, their fundamental human rights may be at grave risk.”

At the time Amnesty changed its position, many long-time Catholic supports left the group and at least one Vatican Cardinal called upon Catholics no longer to support the group. In the intervening years Amnesty has become an aggressive public campaigner for a right to abortion and even makes the claim that abortion is a human right in international law.

Elizabeth Charnowski is a Blackstone Intern, a wonderful program of the Alliance Defending Freedom, at the Catholic Family and Human Rights Institute (C-FAM). This article was originally published in Friday Fax, an internet report published weekly by C-FAM,a New York and Washington DC-based research institute (http://www.c-fam.org/).

Governments Fight Back Against CEDAW Committee

By Elizabeth Charnowski

(NEW YORK – C-FAM) Countries are fighting back against the CEDAW Committee’s questioning on abortion and maternal mortality as delegates complain about the inaccurate information the Committee relies on and the ideological rigidity of its experts. Committee experts insist abortion decreases maternal mortality, despite conflicting evidence, in order to push countries to change their abortion laws.

The 30th anniversary of the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW) kicked off the 53nd session of the Committee in New York last week. The Committee is reviewing reports of Indonesia, Guyana, Mexico, and a few other countries.

The Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF) along with other pro-life organizations filed an extensive report to the CEDAW Committee focusing on the false correlations between liberalized abortion laws and maternal mortality. That report was outnumbered by reports filed by pro-abortion advocates.

Guyana, Indonesia, and Mexico detailed efforts to reduce maternal mortality. Throughout the session, CEDAW experts relied on arguments submitted by abortion advocates, instead of the data in the ADF or country reports.

Zohra Rasekh, one of the reputed health experts on the committee, questioned Guyana’s Human Services and Social Security Minister Jennifer Webster about reducing maternal mortality. Rasekh was previously an analyst for Population Action International, whose goals include advocating for access to contraception for all women. She stated that Guyana’s high rate of maternal mortality is linked to unsafe abortions, and safe abortions are not available in the country.

Ms. Webster replied that there is no data showing that maternal mortality is related to abortion laws. Moreover, public hospitals in Guyana must provide abortions, and the public health system is completely free. The Committee seemed taken aback by the challenge.

The episode made it into the Guyana Times, which reported the delegation complained about the reliance of experts on “alternative sources” for their data, especially when accurate data was available in their report. Guyanese delegates plan to file an official complaint over the CEDAW Committee’s questioning.

Rasekh questioned the Indonesian delegate on abortion and maternal mortality again relying on inaccurate data. Amnesty International’s report on Indonesia included parallel data, claiming that unsafe abortions account for 5 to 11% of all maternal deaths in the country, and that legalizing abortion would be a “positive step towards combating maternal mortality.”

After the delegate ignored the abortion questions, Rasekh asked again if Indonesia had any intention of changing its abortion laws, specifically to allow for abortion in the case of incest and for women less than 6 weeks pregnant. The delegate defended the laws of her country where abortion is only allowed when a pregnancy threatens the life of the mother or in the case of rape.

As much as the CEDAW Committee and NGOs insist the maternal mortality rate is linked to abortion, no evidence supports this claim. The ADF report stated data, including a recent Chilean study, that found legalizing abortion does not contribute to maternal mortality rates. Rather, education, increases in health care quality, and improved medical conditions are key to decreasing maternal mortality.

Elizabeth Charnowski writes for C-FAM. This article first appeared in the Friday Fax, an internet report published weekly by C-FAM (Catholic Family & Human Rights Institute), a New York and Washington DC-based research institute (http://www.c-fam.org/). This article appears with permission.

No Controversy? Facts For Melinda Gates

The Bullying that U.S. Law Protects

By Judie Brown

Whenever I hear or read of a news story involving the problem of bullying, my husband always reminds me that, as the youngest of four boys, he was bullied from the moment he could walk! I suppose that, because brothers will be brothers, in retrospect this is rather funny and is likely to be expected in a house full of boys. But that was then; this is now.

In today’s cultural climate, however, we are not talking about the taunts of a sibling. In fact, today, bullying and the actions many educational institutions are taking to prevent it make headlines with regularity. The reason is perhaps best defined by the National Crime Prevention Council, which reports, “Bullying has become a tidal wave of epic proportions. Although bullying was once considered a rite of passage, parents, educators, and community leaders now see bullying as a devastating form of abuse that can have long-term effects on youthful victims, robbing them of self-esteem, isolating them from their peers, causing them to drop out of school, and even prompting health problems and suicide.”

Undoubtedly there should be no place in a civilized society for brutality among classmates, on college campuses, or anywhere—including the family, which is often scarred beyond belief by abusive authority figures or inhumane acts perpetrated against those who are helpless. For example, could you ever have imagined a time in America’s history when commentators would be addressing a mother’s spoken desire to terminate the lives of her disabled children?

Or could we have ever imagined news reports about men who do not want their girlfriends or wives to be pregnant and subsequently brutalize them or even kill either the preborn child or both mother and child?

With all this violence and abuse being discussed, it is amazing that none take note of the underlying cause of this increasing exhibition of brutality. The fundamental problem that has aggravated human aggression, pitted the strong against the weak, destroyed families, and turned American values upside down is abortion. The violence that concerns so many in America today got a jump start when the Supreme Court chose to permit the ultimate child abuse by ignoring the result of the act of abortion in deference to the rights of the mother.

This deadly war is waged daily pitting mothers against their innocent preborn babies, pitting the strong against the weak, and pitting truth against fabrication. And sadly the lies have won the day and thus the acts that result from a callous disregard for human life go on and on, becoming ever more threatening not only to the expectant mother and her child, but to the society in which we live.

As long as America condones the act of abortion, and her citizens believe that it is nothing more than a choice a woman has a right to make, we will witness ongoing dastardly deeds of hatred perpetrated against those who are less fortunate—including the poor, minorities, children, and the infirm. What has happened to our national sense of justice, our concern for the weakest members of the human family? It has evaporated in an era of tolerance and delusion.

It seems to me that if, for example, our president can create a special agency to address atrocities abroad, he could most certainly address the horrors imposed on the innocent in the womb that he knowingly persists in condoning right here on American soil.

Why does America have a bullying problem? Because we are the bullies!

Judie Brown is co-founder of the American Life League, a grassroots Catholic pro-life education organization committed to the protection of all innocent human beings from the moment of creation to natural death.

Reflection of a Pregnant Pro-Lifer

The above title originates from an article posted on the Canadian Centre For Bio-Ethical Reform. It is the personal story of an pro-life advocate about see her pre-born child in her own womb. As she reflects about this life-changing moment, Ruth Shaw realized two important things: (1) The use of pictures and photographs by pro-life advocates is the best evidence that a fetus is not a blob but a unique person in development, and (2) it is this reason why women contemplating abortion will not likely have an ultrasound.

The following is a excerpt of her story.

As many people know, the work that I do with CCBR is often considered to be controversial because of our constant use of imagery, both of fetal development and abortion. We have often been accused of making women feel guilty about their abortions and have been encouraged to use slogans instead of pictures as though there is no greater merit to using the latter.

As someone who has been using CCBR’s methods for a few years, I first became convicted of their effectiveness while doing pro-life activism on campus. But, once again, the overall effectiveness of imagery was clarified for me when I saw photos of our baby up close.

I now more fully understand why ultrasound technicians are less likely to show abortion-minded women ultrasound imagery before their abortion. There is no way that a woman could in good conscience choose to kill her child after seeing his/her spine, legs, head, eyes, and mouth and after each body part is described to her in detail. There is no way she could justifiably continue to say that her child is just a blob, or a cancerous growth, or simply an extension of herself. Ultrasound imagery shatters the pro-choice perspective of pre-born children into a million pieces.