A common criticism of pro-lifers is that their arguments are steeped in emotionalism, not facts. Women have abortions all the time, they insist, and they aren’t depressed or traumatized. However, solid academic research proves this isn’t true. The findings show that “fetal loss is traumatic” and that this may have serious impact on our national health care system.
In a review of scientific studies on post-abortive women, published on July 16 in Psychiatry and Clinical Neurosciences, entitled “Abortion and subsequent mental health: Review of the literature,” Carlo V. Bellieni MDand Giuseppe Buonocore MD, PhD (Department of Pediatrics, Obstetrics and Reproduction Medicine, University of Siena, Siena, Italy) show objectively that the likelihood of women who have abortions suffering from metal illness as a result is significantly increased.
The physicians reviewed all of the research between 1995-2011 that related to abortion and its correlation to mental problems in order to asses the connection. Of the 36 scientific studies that exist in that period, 30 were used; the eliminated studies were primarily due to “methodological bias,” such as invalid questionnaires or control groups.
Ultimately, the researchers discovered that in “Abortion versus childbirth: 13 studies showed a clear risk for at least one of the reported mental problems [Depression, anxiety disorders (e.g. post-traumatic stress disorder) and substance abuse disorders] in the abortion group versus childbirth,… and only one paper reported a worse mental outcome for childbearing” (Bellieni & Buonocore, 2013).
The researchers examined the differences reported between abortion, childbearing and also miscarriage because it is known as “fetal loss.” The results are statistically significant.
Abortion versus childbirth
Researchers noted that “Thirteen studies supported the presence of a risk of mental disorder in the groups of women who had had an abortion versus those who gave birth. Only five papers showed no risk in the abortion group.” This is an important finding to note. Scientific unbiased research found there was a presence of mental disorder resulting from abortion. Most often, abortion advocates insist that it’s in a woman’s best interest to have an abortion if she feels unprepared to parent; it is presented as a positive metal health decision; however, almost 20 years of research proves that assertion incorrect.
Abortion versus unplanned pregnancy
Researchers found, “When comparing abortion and unplanned pregnancies that ended in delivery, four studies found a higher risk for loss of self-esteem, anxiety disorders, depression, suicide ideation, and substance abuse disorder or substance abuse rate in the abortion groups” (Bellieni & Buonocore, 2013). This finding was the majority of this category, further showing abortion affects mental health, and for most in a negative way–more negative than if the woman has an unplanned birth.
Some other findings from the research review, all from (Bellieni & Buonocore, 2013):
Clinical depression- present in 17% of women who give birth to a living baby and in 26% of those who abort.
Depression and bipolar disorder- present in 43.2% of women who miscarried, in 45.5% of those who had an abortion, in 28.7% of those who gave birth and in 25.1% of never pregnant women.
Anxiety- One study showed that 10 days after the event, 47.5% of the women who had a miscarriage had high Impact of Event Scale [self-report measure that assesses subjective distress caused by traumatic events] scores, compared with 30% for women who had an induced abortion. After two years this became “2.6% and 18.1%, respectively. [And] Another study that compared term childbirth and abortion found that after 14 months, relevant psychiatric diagnoses were present in 0% and in 16.7% of women, respectively.”
These findings fly in the face of what abortion advocates say is truth. And it would be beneficial for them to review these findings regardless of their view on abortion—assuming they actually care about women and not a cause. The final discussion of the article notes two important implications of the fact that these articles support that “abortion is a risk factor for subsequent mental illness when compared with childbirth” (Bellieni & Buonocore, 2013). The authors note:
“The first is that fetal loss is traumatic. It is a risk factor for mental illness – both in the case of abortion and in miscarriage – and its impact on a woman’s life can erroneously be underestimated. Most studies show that abortion has a greater impact on women’s mental health than childbearing; all remaining studies show similar mental consequences and only one seems to have noted a worse outcome for childbearing. Even the birth of an unplanned child is often traumatic, but abortion seems to be even more traumatic, or similar with regard to the psychological outcomes; this should be taken into account when counseling women scared by a non-desired pregnancy. Making their choices, women should be clearly informed.” (Bellieni & Buonocore, 2013)
There is no pro or anti to this statement. The facts are the facts. In every objective study for almost 20 years, which followed internationally accepted research guidelines, abortion is shown as a risk factor for mental illness. To ignore this fact in the name of “choice” is evidence that the abortion advocates actually care more about the issue than the women they claim to defend. Academically and scientifically speaking, there isn’t a much better standard by which all sides can agree than solid academic research. The pro-life community has asserted this for years and one of the reasons abortion is so bad for women. Countless post-abortive women tell stories of the trauma they endured. Now we see that scientific research also upholds their cause. It is time for abortion advocates to listen to what the facts say.
And finally, it is time for our action to listen to the last conclusion the authors make:
“These data show that a greater involvement of the national health system in clinical follow up of women who have had a fetal loss is desirable…. In particular, elective abortion is one of the most common medical interventions in the world: 1.29 million were performed in the USA in 2008. Thus it is important to monitor mothers who have undergone abortion, to prevent negative mental consequences: although the discussion in this field is limited to ethics and morality, we emphasize that there is also a serious public health problem. The discussion in this field does not currently trespass on the moral boundaries; now, it is important to consider the hypothesis that abortion is an independent risk factor for mental health, and carry out more research accordingly.” (Bellieni & Buonocore, 2013)
This news should be a startling wake-up call for our nation and our health care system which will have mandated abortive birth control coverage and even has an “abortion surcharge.” We continue to fund Planned Parenthood, the nation’s largest abortion provider, and while that money is technically not allowed to cover abortion, it is fungible money that frees up the clinics to provide abortions with money coded otherwise.
Virtually all that abortion advocates argue for—women’s rights, women’s health, women’s access to abortion, women’s funding of abortion—is shown, factually, to be bad for those same women. This research wasn’t from a couple of pro-life guys plugging out a blog. It was conducted the same way all academic research must be conducted and met the same standards.
When will the abortion industry listen to what’s actually best for women? Perhaps when they are mandated to pay for the counseling of the damaged women who were lied to about how abortion was no big deal psychologically. Only the ignorant could argue abortion is harmless to women.
Bellieni , C., & Buonocore, G. (2013). Abortion and subsequent mental health: Review of the literature. Psychiatry and Clinical Neurosciences, 67(5), 301–310. Retrieved from http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/pcn.12067/full
Before I enrolled at Ohio University in 2004—at the height of the Bush-Kerry battle for the White House—I’d been warned that the campus was “pretty liberal.”
That turned out to be the understatement of the century. It was common for professors, who were supposed to be teaching journalism or history, to begin class with a tirade about Bush. About five minutes in, some brown-noser’s hand would shoot into the air—not to offer an insightful comment or criticism, but to parrot everything the professor had just said. These people weren’t just liberals. They were cookie-cutter liberals, who all shared the same appropriately left-wing opinions on every issue.
I eventually vented my annoyance by becoming a conservative columnist for the campus newspaper. I accepted—no, relished—my Emmanuel Goldstein status on campus. Even if half my classmates hated me, at least I had a brain of my own. I inspired about a dozen letters to the editor each week. They all sounded exactly the same, filled with liberal buzzwords and cliches.
Really, is there a more dedicated conformist on Earth than the college liberal?
What else could explain why they signed a petition to legalize “fourth trimester abortions”?
Yes, you read that right. Dan Joseph from the conservative Media Research Center went to the George Mason University campus and got a bunch of liberal lemmings to sign the petition. As most adults know, a pregnancy has three trimesters. Therefore, a “fourth-trimester abortion” would be performed after the baby was born.
But the students didn’t even pause to think about it. All Joseph had to do was throw out a few liberal buzzwords and catchphrases—“right to choose,” “a woman’s right to control her own body”—and they knew this was something they must agree with. Rather than ask any questions, the students nodded complacently and said “okay, cool!” (If the petitioner had uttered any conservative buzzwords, like “right to life,” the students would have hissed and sneered on cue.)
This is the state of affairs on most college campuses. Professors and classmates don’t teach critical thinking, but a set of beliefs students must adopt in order to fit in. And fitting in is very, very important to liberals. When conservative author Peter Schweitzer studied the personality traits of liberals versus conservatives for his book Makers and Takers, he found that nearly half of liberals say they value “being popular,” compared to only 26 percent of conservatives.
To find the anti-establishment rebels on campus, you’ll have to visit a pro-life group. They’re the ones agitating to actually change the status quo. Back in May, I wrote about pro-life efforts to improve conditions on campus for pregnant students.
“We know that young women, especially students, who become pregnant, are directly targeted by Planned Parenthood and the abortion industry,” Kristan Hawkins, president of Students for Life, told me of the group’s “Pregnant on Campus” initiative. “Often, there is nowhere for her to live on campus after she is ‘outed’ as being pregnant and there is no housing available for her on campus after the baby is born; no daycare options, no changing tables in the bathrooms, or lactation rooms. But we also know that some of these burdens can be relieved when a small group of students starts asking questions on campus.”
Yes, “asking questions.” That’s something college liberals are not so good at, especially when the topic is abortion.
With her father by her side, Tuesday Cain proudly displays the sign she and a friend made for their protest against the 20 week abortion ban in Texas. A picture of her friend holding the sign went viral because it reads, “Jesus isn’t a dick; so keep him out of my vagina.” Her friend was the one in the photo seen ‘round the world, but Tuesday Cain wants everyone to know it was her idea.
In a guest post on xojane.com, Tuesday writes that she is passionate “about fighting for a woman’s right to choose and the separation of church and state in my home state of Texas.” While I can see that many pro-choicers think that being against abortion is all about religion, banning abortions after 20 weeks is more about the fact that 20 week old unborn children are unarguably human children. No one can hide behind the words embryo or zygote. Though they may call them fetuses, these children can feel pain, and can soon survive outside of the womb. They aren’t a part of a women’s body. They are their own unique human. And while I’m sure that God and Jesus agree with this, it’s the science behind it that makes impossible for the government to ignore that these children should not be aborted.
Tuesday also claims that an older man screamed at her and her friend saying that they should “become lesbians” because no man will ever want them. She says it isn’t very Christian and she’s right. But who says this man is a Christian. Not every pro-lifer is a going to be civil just like not every pro-abortionist is going to be civil. In fact, it was the pro-abortionist who were chanting “Hail Satan” in an attempt to drown out the sounds of pro-lifers singing Amazing Grace. It was the pro-abortionists who had bricks and tampons seized from them. Bricks and tampons as well as urine and feces which they planned to throw at pro-lifers. According to reports, pro-lifers were escorted by police from the Capitol for their safety. There are people on both sides of the abortion debate who do horrible things in the name of their cause. And while I agree with Tuesday that it was wrong for this older man to call her ugly and scream at her, he is not a good representation of the pro-life movement.
Tuesday thinks that banning abortion after 20 weeks will put women’s lives at risk. But if an unborn child is viable, why would any abortionist need to kill her to save her mother? It’s a well-known fact that late term abortions involve inducing labor. Why not deliver a live baby? Why not perform an emergency C-section? Doctors should be working to save both the mother and child, and mothers should be willing to put their lives on the line for their child.
Now that she has made sure to receive the credit for creating the sign, Tuesday plans on creating T-shirts to express her feelings. And while Tuesday says she knows a post-abortive woman who is now pro-life, it doesn’t change her stance. She says that this woman, likely with post-abortion syndrome, is one of the reasons she will continue to fight for abortion rights. And if witnessing someone’s pain and regret at killing her own children isn’t enough to instill a sense of wrong when it comes to abortion, perhaps an education will. Tuesday is fourteen and she wants to be a science teacher. It is my hope that in learning about science, Tuesday will soon see that even females in the womb deserve rights, no matter the religion of their parents.
One of the most shocking conversations I have experienced occurred on a train. I was in the lounge car, watching the sun rise as we glided through the gritty precincts of Los Angeles. Sitting next to me was a young man, about my age, who was an atheist. We had become entangled in a debate on religion, and I was pressing him to concede the reality of objective moral values. “Surely,” I argued, “You would admit that the Holocaust was truly evil.” “Well,” he responded, “You have to see it from the German point of view. They thought the Jews were a real threat. They told them to leave, and the Jews insisted on staying.”
Years ago, I might have written this young man off as a psychopath. I am afraid, however, that he is really quite normal.
A few months before the train ride, I had a similar experience at my church. I was teaching a class of junior high students, most of whom had grown up in the church. During the lesson, I showed a clip from a WWII era film depicting a German officer mistreating a Jewish man. After the clip was finished, I asked the class to help me compile a list of all of the truths which we could perceive about the event. We quickly assembled a list describing the actions that the officer had taken. After a stretch of silence, I added one more item to the list: “These actions were wrong.” Before I had finished writing this statement, one of the students corrected me. “That’s not a truth,” he confidently asserted. “It’s an opinion.”
I turned around to see the class nodding in agreement. “So you mean you don’t believe this statement is true?” I asked, pointing to what I had just written.
“No, it’s an opinion,” someone else answered.
“It’s true from the Christian perspective,” interjected another, “But obviously the soldier doesn’t believe it’s true, so it’s just an opinion.”
I pressed the question further, but not a single student in the junior high youth group believed that the statement I had written was objective truth. Later that day, I presented the same lesson to the high school youth group and received a similar response.
What is happening here? It is really quite simple. From a very early age, these students, along with the young man on the train, have been taught to believe that science is the only means to establish objective truth. Therefore, since moral claims cannot be empirically verified in a laboratory, they are viewed merely as subjective constructs of human societies.
The articulations of the young man on the train are therefore not as unreasonable as one might at first suppose. In fact, they are quite logical. Provided, of course, that naturalism is true. But what if naturalism is not true? What if reality consists of more than the particles described by physics? In the final analysis, therefore, moral questions cannot be separated from religious ones.
This is why I cringe when I hear pro-lifers say that their views against abortion are founded on science and not religion. What they should say instead is that their views against abortion are neither more nor less religious than their views against rape, child abuse, and infanticide. Science can demonstrate that all of these various actions damage another human being, but science itself cannot tell you whether it is right or wrong to damage another human being. Therefore, while science certainly undergirds one’s beliefs about the content of these actions, any question about the morality of these actions transcends science.
In short, I do not believe abortion kills an innocent human being because of my religion. I believe abortion kills an innocent human being because of science. But I believe it is wrong to kill an innocent human being because of my religion.
One of the main arguments given for legalizing abortion in Ireland is that troubled women would become suicidal if they were forced to carry their pregnancies to term. Ironically, this was originally how abortions were made available in many US states before Roe versus Wade – as Dr. Bernard Nathanson describes in his books Aborting America and The Hand of God.
A woman in pre-Roe versus Wade New York, which had abortion laws more liberal than most of the other states, had to go to a psychiatrist and claim that she was emotionally unbalanced and would commit suicide if she was not allowed to abort her baby. Many of these meetings became “rubberstamping” sessions with their own script – a woman would say the right things, pay her hundred dollars for the “session”, and receive written permission to have an abortion, which she would then take to the abortion provider. This legal situation opened the door for abortion on demand.
But the underlying question is this: does having an abortion reduce a woman’s risk of suicide? Quite a few studies have been conducted addressing this question – and the answers they provide are very one-sided.
Researchers in Finland interviewed 600,000 women for a study that showed that women who became pregnant and had abortions were six times more likely to commit suicide than women who carried their pregnancies to term. Women who aborted were three times more likely to commit suicide than those who had not been pregnant. The statistics show that rather than increasing a woman’s chances of suicide, carrying a baby to term actually decreases them.(1) Also noteworthy was the fact that the study was based not only on interviews but also on medical records. This reliance on records in addition to testimony helped the study avoid “recall bias.” Recall bias is a phenomenon that sometimes skews the results of abortion related studies because many women who have had abortions are not willing to talk about them and will not reveal them on a questionnaire, even when asked.
A related study, in the European Journal of Health, found similar results. This study tracked 463,473 women who became pregnant between the years of 1980 and 2004 and recorded their mortality rates after either giving birth or having abortions. They found that women who had abortions were more likely to die within 10 years after their abortions than women who carried to term. Suicide was a common cause of death for these women.(2)
Another study in The British Medical Journal discovered that the rate of suicide in women after birth was 5.9 out of 100,000. Among women who had abortions, the rate was 34.7. The suicide rate for women who had not been pregnant was 11.3. Again, carrying a pregnancy to term was seen to reduce the suicide rate.
Another study, conducted by David C Reardon of the Elliot Institute, studied 173,000 American women who became pregnant and then either had abortions or carried to term. The survey followed them for eight years after the pregnancy ended. Reardon found that women who aborted were 154% more likely to commit suicide than women who gave birth.(3). Another survey cited by David Reardon in his book Aborted Women, Silent No More (Springfield, IL: Acorn Books, 2002) discovered that up to 60% of women who had abortions had subsequent suicidal feelings, with 28% actually attempting suicide.
The magazine Women’s World reported a study of aborted women in which 45% said they had thoughts of suicide following their abortions.(4)
The statistics are even grimmer for teenagers. One study found that teenage girls who had one or more abortions were 10 times more likely to commit suicide than those who never aborted. (5)
Another study revealed that the rate of psychiatric hospitalization for teenagers who had abortions is three times higher than that of other teens.(6)
But statistics only tell part of the story. Numbers do not convey the anguish of individual women. A teenager identified as “Nelly R” describes being coerced by her boyfriend into having an abortion. She says:
“I remember when they started the IV and how I looked up and told one of the nurses to tell me what was the sex of the baby and to tell the baby that I loved it and I had no choice. from there I don’t remember anything but when I woke up in the recovery room crying and checking my stomach to see if it was a horrible dream. I remember screaming from the top of my lungs and saying I wish I could die too. I fell into a deep depression and I bearly [sic] made it to senior year. I tried to commit suicide. I didn’t care for my self [sic] or anyone else at the time I was a murder.[sic] I remember going to the police station and saying that I had murdered someone and saying that I killed my own baby. I thought that I would never be happy again.”
Another woman shared her story on the John Ankerberg show. She said:
When I was examined the doctor said that he had been mistaken, the baby was far more advanced than he had thought, and that it was 15 weeks, and I was really just in shock. Within a minute, I was aborted, waited a few minutes, and then I got up to get dressed. And when I went over to the dressing room, I saw bucket of blood. And, my baby was in the bucket of blood, and the baby was not an inch big, the baby was as big as my hand, and it was a real baby. All I could think of was that I had murdered my baby… I started deteriorating emotionally that night. Over the next month, I cried, not normal cries, I cried from the bellows of the earth. I remember just leaning at the top of my staircase, just wishing I could throw myself down to the bottom. I remember thinking of jumping on the roof and jumping off. I thought of every method of suicide, I tried to consider doing. And I cried so deeply, so constantly, and so deeply, it was like the wail of a newborn baby when they cry and their fists are clenched, and they just cannot control the crying and somehow I thought I must. It was the most extraordinary crying I could ever see myself doing.”
Another woman who aborted twins said:
“After aborting my boys, I was a wreck. I instantly had a nervous breakdown. I contemplated suicide because I had lost my will to live. I felt I needed to be with them and to help them somehow. I could hear them calling me at night reaching out to me, but I couldn’t touch them. I wanted out of my misery.”
Another woman told the story of her abortion in The Postabortion Review newsletter published by the Elliot Institute. She had her abortion when she was 16 in 1977, and still suffers. After describing how the clinic “counselors” lied to her about the development of the baby, she says:
I began to drink heavily and use drugs. I had severe depressions in which I contemplated suicide. I had, and still have, horrible nightmares involving babies and people trying to kill me. I still get depressed and cry a lot. I pray at night that God will let my baby know that I didn’t kill him because I hated him. I long to hold him so much now that it hurts, and I want him to know that.
I harbor secret fears that one of my children will be taken from me because of this horrible act that I have committed. This fear was compounded when I almost miscarried one of my children at twelve weeks. I feel sure the problem was connected to my abortion. The problems go on and on. I had never allowed myself to calculate the month that my baby would have been born. Recently I figured out when the baby would have been born and was horrified when I realized that it was within weeks of when both of my children were born. I had felt intense pressure from within myself to become pregnant at this particular time with both my children. And now the realization has hit me that subconsciously I have substituted my live children for my dead child, by conceiving and giving birth at the same times.
I have spent many years trying to push the memory of what I have done to the back of my mind, but it won’t stay there. I have constantly compared my dead child to what he would have been doing had he lived. I understand that most women who choose to abort experience the same feelings. My child would have been in first grade this year. It’s very hard for me to look at a first grader.
I have shed many tears over the last few years and now I’m angry. I’m angry at myself, my family, the abortion clinic, their counselors, the doctors (who can commit murder on a daily basis), and most of all I’m mad at my government, who prints “IN GOD WE TRUST” on our coins, yet has legalized the daily painful, violent slaughter of the youngest members of our society.
These are just four women out of countless thousands, maybe even millions, who have contemplated suicide after abortion. Is a lie to say that suicide can be prevented by abortion – both statistics and personal testimony show that the opposite is true.
- Gissler M, Hemminki E, Lonnqvist J. Suicides after Pregnancy in Finland, 1987 to 94: Register Linkage Study British Medical Journal 1996 December 7; 313 (7070): 1431 – 4
- M. Gissler, “Injury deaths, suicides and homicides associated with pregnancy, Finland 1987-2000,” European J. Public Health 15(5):459 63,2005.
- DC Reardon et. al., “Deaths Associated With Pregnancy Outcome: A Record Linkage Study of Low Income Women,” Southern Medical Journal 95(8):834-41, Aug. 2002.
- Martina Mahler “Abortion: the Pain No One Talks About” Women’s World, September 24, 1991, 6
- B. Garfinkel, et al., “Stress, Depression and Suicide: A Study of Adolescents in Minnesota,” Responding to High Risk Youth (University of Minnesota: Minnesota Extension Service, 1986)
- R. Somers, “Risk of Admission to Psychiatric Institutions Among Danish Women Who Experienced Induced Abortion: An Analysis Based on National Report Linkage” (Ph.D. Dissertation, Los Angeles: University of California, 1979, Disseration Abstracts International, Public Health 2621-B, Order No. 7926066)
A parliamentary commission in the United Kingdom is calling for changes to abortion laws — specifically, laws that amount to eugenics against babies with disabilities. For a “normal” baby, an abortion can only be performed up until the 24th week of pregnancy. But if your baby is “disabled”? Mothers can abort them right up to the 40th week, even for something as small as a cleft lip. MPs are saying that this discrimination needs to stop.
The rules are being applied in a “haphazard” way with no clear legal definition of how seriously disabled a child is thought likely to be in order to justify a termination, the report finds.
Parents are being “steered” towards aborting babies with disabilities without proper information on the alternatives available to them, it adds.
In extreme cases it has led to foetuses being aborted purely because screening has detected a cleft lip or club foot, conditions which can be dealt with after birth, according to the committee. Under the 1967 Abortion Act, a termination can be carried out up until 24 weeks gestation if two doctors agree that the physical or mental health of the woman or the child would be at risk if the pregnancy were to continue.
But doctors can also approve an abortion up to 40 weeks if doctors think there is a “substantial risk” that the child will be “seriously” handicapped. This reason is given in around 2,700 cases a year.
In addition to discriminatory laws allowing for the abortions of the disabled, the commission found that more support was needed for parents who chose to keep their babies.
Part of what sparked interest in the issue was a report that found a 17% increase in the number of abortions due to disability in the last year. Babies with Down syndrome were about a quarter of the babies aborted, and 90% of the babies diagnosed prenatally are killed. Yet the law was meant to allow for abortions of the “seriously handicapped”. On what planet are cleft lips and Down syndrome considered serious handicaps?
Calling the current state of affairs eugenics is absolutely correct. That babies can be killed simply for having a disability — even a very minor one that can be repaired, such as a cleft lip — right up into the 40th week is abhorrent. It becomes even worse when you add in the fact that babies without a disability cannot legally be subjected to third trimester abortions. Unsurprisingly, a British pro-abortion group has come out against the report. Evidently, the pro-aborts want discrimination based upon disabilities, even minor disabilities, to continue. If you don’t have a perfect baby, then that baby doesn’t deserve to live. Cosmetic issues that can be fixed with minor surgery are good reasons to deprive a child of their life.
Is this the kind of world we want to live in, where a child only deserves life if they meet some ridiculous standard of perfection?
Men, it’s time to man up. There is a new movement in America, and it’s called “bro-life.”
Women have long been allowed to talk about abortion. But for men – the topic has been taboo.
Abortion advocates silence men from speaking out against the greatest human rights violation of our time. They claim men – more specifically, pro-life men - cannot speak about abortion because “it’s not their bodies and not their choice.” Nevertheless, isn’t it ironic how men who favor abortion have the privilege of having a voice in the discussion?
Recently, we have heard much talk about the “Bro-Choice” movement, which sadly consists of men pushing for abortion. Simply put, bro-choice is men’s right to use women.
Burnt Orange Report staff writer, Ben Sherman, brought “bro-choice” to the national spotlight with this rant:
Your sex life is at stake.
Can you think of anything that kills the vibe faster than a woman fearing a back-alley abortion? Making abortion essentially inaccessible…will add an anxiety to sex that will drastically undercut its joys. And don’t be surprised if casual sex outside of relationships becomes far more difficult to come by.
It’s clear: if the Legislature basically takes away a…woman’s right to choose, having sex becomes a much, much riskier proposition for women and men.
And recently, we’ve seen what bro-choice looks like manifested in the life of JJ Redick.
Choice USA released a pledge for “bro-choice” men to sign which called for men to have “the courage to speak out against injustice, even at the risk of being alienated,” and be “an authentic ally to women” as “part of the solution.”
I could not agree more. Men must speak out about injustice, and their support is essential to ending the injustice at hand. However, where they go wrong, is what they define as the injustice. From there, the entire movement crumbles.
The real injustice is the holocaust of pre-born babies killed by abortion. The truest measure of any society is in how they treat the weakest and most vulnerable. Who could be more vulnerable than a pre-born child? A mother’s womb should be the safest place for human life, but in our society today, this innocent, vulnerable life is not safe. It is legal to dismember unborn children, limb by limb, and bro-choice men are advocating for this practice so that they can have as much casual sex as they want, without consequences. Sorry, bros, that’s not how the world works.
That’s where the bro-life movement comes in. We’re taking a stand. We’re building a culture of life. Recently, Counter Cultured released a new video featuring a diverse group of men explaining why they are pro-life. Generation Life has also released a video called, “Be Courageous,” and this is what the bro-life movement is all about. We are a movement of courageous men who are willing and ready to stand up for the respect of women and children.
The majority of our generation is pro-life; this includes women and men. Since Roe v. Wade in 1973, we have had a different experience than our elders. We’ve seen the 3-D ultrasounds of our brothers and sisters. We’ve googled abortion and seen the bloody images. We all know somebody who has been hurt by abortion – our mothers, sisters, friends or our girlfriend. We want to empower women – let them know that they can raise a child.
It’s time for men to stand with women – not just for one night but rather all the time. If you are willing to sleep next to them, why not STAND next to them? Men need to be more than a partner in conception (or a partner in bed). They need to be partners in life, love, and relationships. Men need to uphold the true values of life and respect by supporting a woman beyond a 4-post bed…A REAL man does not abandon his woman; a REAL MAN does not dismember his own child.
It comes down to this…Abortion hurts women and kills children. Women deserve better than abortion and bro-choice men.
Come at us, bro! Join the bro-life movement.
This is a clip from an episode of Life Report called “Shawn Carney on the State of the Pro-Life Movement.” In this clip I asked 40 Days for Life co-founder Shawn Carney what he thought the pro-life movement’s greatest victory has been so far.
Click the embedded video and it will start at the right place in the interview. This particular topic ends at 19:12.
If you don’t want to watch the 3-minute video, you can read the full transcript below.
Josh: Let me ask you a few questions that I’ve asked a lot of other pro-life leaders on this show. What has been the pro-life movement’s greatest victory or victories so far?
Shawn: Persistence. And it’s easy to say that after 40 years of legalized abortion. But the fact that the March for Life is still the largest gathering in Washington D.C. year in and year out after 40 years says that fundamentally this is a religious movement.
And it has to be a religious movement because we can’t face this on our own. It’s too overwhelming. And when it’s based on our faith in God it means it’s something that’s never going away. There are few things as clearly religious in our country than the pro-life movement. It is one built of people of faith. And that’s our biggest asset.
The other side doesn’t have that. Planned Parenthood doesn’t have prayer rallies, and if they do, it’s usually to mock a group like 40 Days for Life like they did in Eureka, California.
But that’s a crucial point and it’s the most important point – that this is a religious movement and that it is one made up of sinners. We are not a bunch of self-righteous Christians telling the world how to live. This movement is made up of people who have done abortions; who have had abortions; who have paid for abortions; who have encouraged friends and family to have abortions; who have supported abortion legislation.
This is a movement full of people who have been on the other side. There is a huge river that goes from the pro-choice side to the pro-life side. Most of the people I know in the movement that are working, at one point or another were pro-choice or even post-abortive; or in Abby Johnson’s case ran an abortion facility. That’s a movement of converts.
There’s nobody that grows up and is 50 years old and has seven kids who are now grown and married and says that, “My whole life I’ve been wrong. I haven’t supported abortion and I need to start doing that.” Those people don’t exist.
A lot of the baby boomers who were pro-choice and went through all of the craziness in the 70′s are now the most powerful voices for the unborn. And that’s a sign of truth – that ultimately, no matter how far we go off track as a nation, truth will always prevail. And thank God there’s a movement here to welcome these people.
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Special thanks to Nate Amundson for the transcription. Thanks to Andrea Gleiter for helping to edit this post.
Despite numerous “potholes” in their 1,000 mile bike ride from New Orleans to Chicago, Biking for Babies met their goal of raising $50,000 for pregnancy resource centers. They endured a boot on the wheel of their team van twenty-five minutes before their departure from New Orleans, two riders out for a day due to heat sickness, 30 flat bike tires (a new record), a crash in the traffic of Memphis, and being pulled over twice by cops. Through the summer heat they were kept strong by the support they received from the communities they rode through.
“I think there was more on road support than I’ve ever seen,” explains Mike Schaefer, co-founder of Biking for Babies, “[There were] happy honks, thumbs ups, people donating money at gas stations. Community support, I think, has been stronger than ever. Churches were generous in, not just feeding us, but also several times waiting a couple of hours before we were supposed to arrive in order to cheer our arrival. Many people provided comfortable beds to sleep on.”
Biking for Babies began riding in 2009, and Schaefer says he’s never been more satisfied with the conclusion of a ride. They were able to get all eleven riders and five support crew members successfully through the entire route on time and in one piece. They even set a new speed record of 52 miles per hour. The trip created a strong sense of community and friendship among the riders as well as numerous memorable moments.
“My favorite memory that I will cherish forever occurred on our day off,” says Jimmy Becker, co-founder of Biking for Babies, “During this time, we had the opportunity to share reflections on three questions we had considered earlier in the trip, namely: “What are you doing? Why are you doing it? Who are you doing it for? We have a video on the website the captures a glimpse of the experience. It’s beyond words how amazing that time was, especially considering how it translated in the time spent on the saddle and even more the time spent together glorifying God and praying together before the altar.”
The details haven’t been finalized for next year’s ride, but Schaefer and Becker believe that Biking for Babies can and will grow to include more participants in their 1,000 mile rides as well as more smaller scale community rides like one that recently took place near St. Louis to raise money for their Illinois charity, Life Network of Southern Illinois. It was the first they had done and it raised $2,000 and brought together over 60 families and friends.
Since 2009, Biking for Babies has raised over $130,000 for pregnancy resource centers around the country and they’ve ridden over 4,600 miles.
“This year presented us with an opportunity to see and experience hope and to witness others’ authentic joy, even amidst trials,” says Becker, “With all the mishaps and unexpecteds, we came to appreciate all the more the beauty of life and discovered striking parallels between our trip and life.”
It says a lot that the state of Maryland revoked Nicola Riley’s license to practice medicine. NARAL has given Maryland an “A” on abortion. There is no gestational limit for abortions, drawing butchers from around the country to take advantage of the lucrative late-term abortion business available there. Abortion clinics are largely unregulated — and, unsurprisingly, when they are inspected (the clinics officials are even aware of, that is) the vast majority had numerous health violations. We don’t know what the abortion rate is because Maryland doesn’t report the numbers to the Center for Disease Control.
Most telling of all is that LeRoy Carhart is still allowed to practice in Maryland, despite the fact that two of his patients died at his hands, Christin Gilbert and Jennifer Morbelli, and has had numerous complaints filed against him.
Considering all of that, it really does speak volumes that abortionist Nicola Riley lost her license in Maryland. What is even more shocking is that the pro-abortion paradise of Maryland, where abortionists can do virtually anything and get away with it, would see fit to revoke her license… yet Riley will still be allowed to butcher women and children in another state: Utah.
Riley was charged with murder in Maryland, alongside abortionist Steven Chase Brigham. Brigham, who had no license to practice medicine in Maryland, employed Riley, who flew to Maryland from Utah on weekends. The “secret clinic” in Elkton was found to have 35 jars of frozen babies, which appeared to be around 36 weeks.
In addition to the frozen remains of the murdered babies, there was a horrifying tale of a patient butchered by Riley. During a late-term abortion, the patient could be heard screaming in pain for over two hours, and justifiably so: Riley perforated her uterus, shoved the baby into the patient’s abdominal cavity, and then pulled part of her bowel out of her vagina. Despite what was an obvious medical emergency, Riley transported the patient by private car to the hospital, and not via ambulance. She also didn’t transfer her to the hospital for an hour and a half. The patient eventually had to be air-lifted for emergency surgery, which saved her life. Her ability to have children in the future, however, is in question. The patient was only 18-years-old.
What makes this even more shocking is that Riley has a long history of criminal activity, which caused Riley to lose her license to practice medicine in Wyoming… but not Utah.
Maryland officials also said Riley should never have been issued a medical license because she had failed to disclose felony convictions for fraud, forgery and larceny, which resulted in a prison sentence, a court martial and a dishonorable discharge from the U.S. Army. Riley also failed to disclose the specific details of her criminal past on her 1997 application to the University of Utah’s medical school and in applications for medical licenses in Utah and Wyoming, investigators found.
In its 26-page ruling, the Maryland board said Riley’s unprofessional conduct was “not remediable” and said it did “not believe that Maryland patients would be safe in the hands of this physician.”
It also isn’t the first time she has been disciplined by the Utah Division of Professional and Occupational Licensing. Yet all Utah is asking of Riley, however, is that she writes an essay detailing what she’s learned from the incident.
It is baffling to try to understand how someone like Nicola Riley could be allowed to continue to practice medicine in any state. How is it that the state of Utah can allow a convicted criminal, who almost killed one patient, and has lost her license to practice medicine in two other states, to continue to perform abortions? The thought is both mind-boggling and terrifying. Riley is a danger to women, and unfortunately will continue to be as long as she is allowed to continue working as an abortionist in Utah.
40 Days for Life is an amazing campaign that unites believers to fast, pray and hold peaceful vigils asking God to end abortion. Since 2004 campaigns have been held in all 50 states as well as countries in Europe, South America and Africa.
One of the campaign’s mission statements is to “seek God’s favor to turn hearts and minds from a culture of death to a culture of life.” The mission statement is being fulfilled as answered prayers continually occur. Some of these miracles include 7,536 babies saved from abortion, 37 abortion centers closed and 83 abortion industry workers quitting their jobs.
A recent answered prayer from multiple campaigns came when Planned Parenthood announced the closing of it’s Bryan/College station center in Texas. The Bryan/College center is significant because it’s the site of the first ever 40 Days for Life campaign. It’s also the place where former abortion director Abby Johnson had a life changing experience that lead her to leave the industry and become a voice for life.
The upcoming 40 Days for Life campaign will undoubtedly produce more powerful stories like these. The 2013 campaign starts on September 25th to November 3rd. Applications for local campaign leaders are being accepted now and until Wednesday, July 31. Go here to apply. Volunteers and participants don’t need to apply to be a part of their local 40 days for Life campaign. The application is for those who want to lead a prayer campaign. 4o Days for Life leaders are an essential part of this movement. They’ll receive online training and information to adequately equip them to mobilize and lead a team. To learn how you can bring 40 days to Life to your community, listen to their North American or International webcast.
There are many people who desire to be a 40 days for Life campaign leader, but have questions about the process. To help answer those questions 40 Days for Life has a important fact page for leaders seeking to apply. The page answers these typical questions:
- This seems overwhelming — where do I start?
- Why is there an application cutoff?
- Is this only for people from certain churches?
- Why is there a fee to lead a local campaign?
- How much more will this cost our community?
- Why apply? Can’t we just do this on our own?
- Why ask for 12 hours of daily vigil coverage?
- Why focus our vigil on just one location?
- Can I really do this?
Visit the fact page here before you apply.
William Wilberforce was passionate British politician and leader in the movement to abolish the slave trade. He is quoted as saying, “So enormous, so dreadful, so irremediable did the Trade’s wickedness appear that my own mind was completely made up for Abolition. Let the consequences be what they would, I from this time determined that I would never rest until I had effected its abolition.”
We need courageous men and women who like Wilberforce, will determine to do all they can to abolish abortion. Prayer is one of the most important ways we can accomplish this. Sign up today to lead a 40 days for Life campaign in your city. Be part of a prayer mobilization movement that’s changing history!
LA Clippers player J.J. Redick is not too pleased that his abortion contract with Vanessa Lopez has become public. Considering he describes himself as a Christian, that’s not entirely surprising. The contract, and Lopez’ allegations that the abortion was coerced, certainly don’t paint him in a flattering light. So what did Redick do? He took to Twitter, and denied that he ever got her pregnant:
I’d like to respond to the outrageous, false and malicious media reports regarding a prior relationship between myself and V Lopez in 2007-
— JJ Redick (@JJRedick) July 24, 2013
Ms Lopez was not and has never been pregnant with a child fathered by me.
— JJ Redick (@JJRedick) July 24, 2013
And Ms. Lopez did not and has never terminated a pregnancy of a child fathered by me.
— JJ Redick (@JJRedick) July 24, 2013
Continued attention to these lies is severely damaging to myself and my family. Thank you.
— JJ Redick (@JJRedick) July 24, 2013
It’s six years later, but it appears that Redick apparently hasn’t grown up any, as he still can’t take responsibility for his actions. The actual documents are out there, and they speak pretty clearly.
Pay close attention to his careful wording. Redick claims Lopez was never pregnant with a child fathered by him, and that Lopez never terminated a pregnancy of a child father by him. With that in mind, check out paragraph five from his contract:
Evidently, Redick was planning ahead. One might wonder why exactly Redick would feel the need to pay for his ex-girlfriend’s abortion if the child wasn’t his, or why he’d also try to bribe her with offers of a relationship or $25,000… all for a kid he had no legal obligations to. It also doesn’t explain why his brother would continue to harass Lopez, or why his attorney would be contacting Lopez to ensure she went through with the abortion.
Far from calming the media firestorm, Redick has just made himself look worse, like a liar who will use women, throw them away, and then refuse to acknowledge what he did. Looks like Redick will be bro-choice to the end.
“Millions of Americans get a sense of the world through national filters like ABC, CBS, and NBC. So it’s inexcusable when these networks, in whom so much public trust is invested, refuse to report the facts on one of the most pressing human rights issues of our time.” – Lila Rose
Lila Rose, president of Live Action, is asking for honest reporting by the three large American news networks: ABC, CBS, and NBC. The area she is suggesting needs some honesty is, of course, abortion:
It’s time for these networks to end their blackout of the truth on abortion – how it irreparably harms woman, babies, and society.
To ABC, NBC, and CBS: Stop the abortion censorship. Stop flinching from the facts of the abortion debate. Stop the information suppression. Every day, America’s abortion industry kills thousands and wounds thousands more. It’s time to tell the truth.
The site also contains open letters to ABC, NBC, and CBS, explaining how abortion is an important issue, but yet the networks, through things like their lack of reporting on the Kermit Gosnell trial and their over reporting of Senator Wendy Davis, are quick to turn a blind eye to what is really happening.
The media has flinched from the reality of abortion for decades, but the degree to which they mischaracterize and whitewash this issue has been egregious lately. How can you go on about a senator’s sneakers and completely ignore the reason you’re talking about those shoes in the first place: because she’s championing a procedure that literally tears helpless children to pieces and puts women’s lives and health in extreme danger?
The website, petition, and open letters are just the beginning. Live Action plans to host rallies outside of each of the media outlet headquarters sometime in the near future.
ABC News just released a shining example of professional journalism. The video can be viewed here.
“A bizarre surprise turned up in a state fair in North Dakota,” begins the reporter, in a tone typically reserved for stories involving severed limbs or decapitations. “Parents were stunned,” he continues dramatically. Then, slowly and deliberately, as if relating a story so shocking that it strains the credulity of his audience, the reporter describes what happened. “A North Dakota anti-abortion group packed these into bags and handed them out to kids at a state fair,” he explains. “Children as young as five and six were handed these…without their parents knowing. Many were disgusted by the stunt,” he concludes gravely, striking a note of righteous indignation mixed with just a hint of appropriate sadness.
And what exactly were these children given? Pornography? Cigarettes? Condoms? Loaded firearms?
They were given small plastic models of a healthy 10 to 12 week old human fetus (see picture).
Echoing the reporter’s thinly veiled sentiments, Samantha Gordon, the director of public affairs for NARAL Pro-Choice America, told ABC News that the stunt was “extreme and unsettling.” Diana Butcher, a local pro-choice activist, was even more impassioned. In an opinion piece in the Grand Forks Herald, Butcher wrote,
To what lows will the extremist opponents of a woman’s right to make health decisions go? Judging by the shaped plastic “fetuses” that they threw to children watching the parade at the North Dakota State Fair, they have definitely reached an all-time low in bad taste…How terrifying for those kids who picked up the items, expecting candy. Yuck! I only wish that more of the lawmakers who’d voted for North Dakota’s new gaggle of unconstitutional bills had been marching in the parade so they could have been pelted by those obscene objects of bad taste. Again: Yuck!
Terrifying? Yucky? Obscene? Butcher sounds like she is describing an abortion, not a human fetus. Being myself a member of the species Homo sapiens, I am rather offended. Does Butcher find this image of a dog fetus terrifying, yucky, and obscene? Does Butcher find this image of a dolphin fetus terrifying, yucky, and obscene? Does Butcher find this image of an elephant fetus terrifying, yucky, and obscene? What precisely does she have against humans?
Do not misunderstand. I am glad that Butcher and her compatriots have such ardent concern for the welfare of children. However, I fail to see the harm in giving a child a model of a human fetus. What sort of images does Butcher imagine that these children will encounter when they open a science book or visit a science museum? Heck, in this day and age, these children probably had their ultrasound pictures posted on Facebook before they were born.
The indignation expressed by these pro-choice advocates is as ironic as Butcher’s name. Over the past few months, these activists have been in a frenzy to stop various bans on late term dismemberment abortions, in which pain capable fetuses are slowly removed, piece by piece, from the womb. (Listen to this if you think I exaggerate.) Such a procedure is held to be a sacred right, and yet handing a slightly older child a small piece of plastic is viewed as “extreme and unsettling.” Yuck!
Katie was an orphan in Bulgaria, and at the age of nine, she weighed just 10.5 pounds. She and the other children in the orphanage were left in cribs at all times, fed a liquid diet (on which many choked, and some even aspirated it to the point of death).
Because of this abuse, Katie had severe protein-energy malnutrition, severe anemia, severe osteoporosis, multiple spinal compression fractures, scurvy, and atrophic skin. But even with all of these medical concerns, Katie was still a wanted child.
She now lives the United States with her adoptive family and is receiving proper medical care as well as an abundance of love and kindness. Children like Katie are able to find homes thanks to the generous devotion of organizations like Eli Project.
A non-profit, Christian organization, Eli Project is a part of Ukraine Ministries of Oklahoma and was created in order to find forever families for children with special needs around the world, but more specifically from Ukraine.
It can be tricky to navigate the international adoption process, as there are a multitude of rules and regulations for each country. Eli Project works with families to help them find their child and complete the paperwork, and to provide them with any assistance necessary. Through hard work and dedication, Eli Project saves these children from lives of loneliness and mistreatment and places them in loving, supportive homes.
But in addition to connecting children like Katie to adoptive families, Eli Project raises money to help the families afford adoption, to cover transportation costs to move children from their orphanage to hospitals for medical testing and treatment, and to ensure that children are properly cared for. They want not only to bring these children home, but to make a positive impact on their home countries so that future children living in these orphanages will have better lives and stronger health.
According to Eli Project’s website, children born with special needs in Eastern Europe “rarely leave the hospital with their family.” These families are told by society that they are unable to raise their own children at home because there are no programs or resources and only inadequate medical care.
But life in the orphanage is harsh for all children – especially those with special needs. The children with special needs are often neglected. They sit in dirty diapers all day and receive little to no attention. Once they leave the home for babies, around age four or five, they are sent to mental institutions. According to Eli Project, 50-80% of these children die within the first year at the institutions because their basic needs are not met. In some institutions, children are tied to their beds twenty-four hours a day.
These children are much like those who are aborted each day. Either their birth parents were unable to care for them or the children were abandoned because of their special needs. But for every child whose birth parents either don’t want her or can’t handle the responsibility, there is a family waiting to call that child their own.
Eli Project is one group whose work proves that every child is a wanted child and that being pro-life isn’t just about being anti-abortion. With every dollar they raise and every child’s life they positively affect, Eli Project is spreading the pro-life message that everyone is deserving of their life, and that every life has value.
Editor’s Note: This summer, we will be providing you with a Life of the Week story every Friday. Our previous Life of the Week articles are here:
- Life of the Week: Coming your way soon
- Life of the Week: Marlena Diedrich and the Acts of Grace Foundation
- Life of the Week: One mom’s hopeful journey from infertility to fulfilled dreams
- Life of the Week: Rapper’s heartbreaking video on regretting abortion has 6+million views
- Life of the Week: From abortion to pro-life speaker
- Life of the Week: Two students bike to save unborn babies
- Life of the Week: Standing for life in Texas
- Life of the Week: Midwife fights against describing children as “monsters”
Please come back each Friday to find a new featured Life of the Week!
Pro-aborts have been falling all over themselves to convince everyone that the new “bro-choice” movement isn’t as disgusting as its proponents make it out to be. Despite the ample number of bro-choicers happily celebrating how abortion enables them to have casual sex with women without commitment or consequences, pro-aborts still insist that they’re really just joking.
Unfortunately, those pesky bro-choice men aren’t cooperating. Case in point: J.J. Redick, NBA player and unofficial bro-choicer. While he describes himself as a Christian and a husband, evidence has come to light this week showing that Redick probably feels right at home in the bro-choice movement. Media Takeout uncovered a contract this week, where Redick and his former girlfriend Vanessa Lopez agreed how to handle an apparently unwanted pregnancy: by having an abortion, of course. The couple had already broken up, but if Lopez would kill her child, Redick would “try” to maintain a relationship with her for one year. If he broke up with her before the year was over, then he would owe her $25,000. That’s right. Redick and Lopez actually sat down with their lawyers and drew up an abortion contract, which you can see here.
Remember that Redick is a professional basketball player for the NBA. Any child he has would have grown up in a life of wealth and privilege. It wasn’t as if money was an issue for him. What was a problem was the fact that Redick could no longer have sex without consequences. But no worries – abortion to the rescue!
This disturbing story takes a darker turn, though. Jill Stanek has had information about Redick and Lopez for a little while, but she chose not to come forward with it until she had Lopez’s blessing. Stanek’s information shows that Redick coerced Lopez into having the abortion. (Bro-choice!)
Lopez’s abortion was performed at All Women Health Center in Orlando, FL., by Dr. Harry Perper. Prior to her abortion, Lopez filled out the following form.
Despite Lopez saying that she felt “forced into it,” Dr. Perper proceeded with the abortion. Lopez was approximately 16-17 weeks pregnant.
Stanek also has e-mails from Redick, his attorney, and his wealth manager. No one had any concern for Lopez, her health, or the ordeal she had just been through. They were concerned only with whether or not the child was aborted, as evidenced by this e-mail from attorney Greg McNeill:
Stanek explains what happened next:
It was at this point things soured. Vanessa never tried to collect the $25,000, and she never heard from Redick again.
Why did Lopez get the abortion? My source: “She got the abortion to save the relationship. She was fairly young, fairly immature, and clearly in love. I do believe she was manipulated by Redick. She told me she wanted to have this baby but he was adamant in his opposition. She thought if she did what he wanted her to do, he would continue the relationship with her. What self-respecting person would sign such a document? My sense is she was simply operating in an emotional state that precluded her from acting rationally. She had no attorney. She hoped somehow, some way that doing what he wanted her to do would benefit her in the long run.”
Sadly, that did not come to pass. Vanessa began to experience symptoms of post-abortion stress syndrome. She sought professional help.
Her doctor said that Lopez’s Post Traumatic Stress Disorder resulted from physical violence and a forced abortion by her ex-boyfriend: Redick. Furthermore, he testified that even after the abortion and the end of the relationship, she was still subjected to threats from Redick’s family.
If everything here is true, then it makes an already disgusting story even worse. But how much of it can we really be surprised by? A movement which fights for women to be able to abort their children so that men can continue to enjoy consequence-free sex is a movement that encourages the exploitation and abuse of women. J.J. Redick could be called the poster boy for what it means to be bro-choice. These are men who want to use women, exploit them, and then throw them to the curb like trash as soon as they’re done with them. And yet, they are also the men applauded by abortion advocates calling themselves “pro-woman.”
Last time, we dispatched Vanity Fair writer Kurt Eichenwald’s deranged assertion that to oppose Planned Parenthood is to support death by breast cancer.
That was more than enough to establish that Eichenwald’s word is not to be trusted, but he gave his piece a veneer of credibility by cramming it with a laundry list of “scientific nonsense and bogus assertions” supposedly committed by Texas pro-life politicians:
What is scary here is not that kind of silliness, but what it shows about a scientific debate devoid of science: the advocates just don’t care. Like a boy trying to justify what he wants to believe, rather than forming belief around demonstrable facts, the Texas legislators and their mostly G.O.P. counterparts around the country aren’t making arguments. They’re just saying things based on a woeful ignorance of the issues involved.
This sort of narrative fodder is like catnip for pro-abortion bloggers, so let’s take some time to see how many “demonstrable facts” Eichenwald really has in his corner.
First, he bashes SB5 sponsor and Texas state GOP Rep. Jodie Laubenberg for saying:
In the emergency room they have what’s called rape kits where a woman can get cleaned out. The woman had five months to make that decision, at this point we are looking at a baby that is very far along in its development.
Eichenwald characterizes this as Laubenberg thinking rape kits “can prevent pregnancy.” Her words were certainly clumsy and confusing. But riddle me this: if she really intended to convey that rape kits abort on the spot, why would she have mentioned a five-month decision window in the same breath?
Laubenberg clarified to PolitiFact that she simply meant that victims are often given morning-after pills roughly around the time a rape kit is administered, which became jumbled due to “trying to get your words out as fast as you can” in the heat of debate. This is a textbook example of making a mountain out of a molehill.
Next, Eichenwald denies that fetuses feel pain at 20 weeks, citing a statement by the American College of Obstetricians & Gynecologists (whom he condemns lawmakers for ignoring), which itself cites an article from the Journal of the American Medical Association.
However, the statement says only that fetal pain is “unlikely” before the third trimester, not “impossible,” and sound ethics demand that humane people err on the side of caution. Pro-lifers didn’t fabricate the 20-week number; credible medical experts attest to it, and they find the aforementioned JAMA article severely wanting. And the ACOG and AMA are hardly the unquestionable idols Eichenwald’s “Kneel Before Science” mantra need them to be – see, for instance, here, here, here, and here for their records of distorting science on behalf of abortion politics.
Outrage Number Three is the following remark by Rep. Michael Burgess, a former OB/GYN:
The fact of the matter is, I argue with the chairman because I thought the date was far too late. We should be setting this at 15 weeks, 16 weeks […] Watch a sonogram of a 15-week baby, and they have movements that are purposeful. They stroke their face. If they’re a male baby, they may have their hand between their legs. If they feel pleasure, why is it so hard to think that they could feel pain?
An odd, distracting example? Sure. But Eichenwald, who lacks the very medical training he chastises Laubenberg and co. for not having, gives no reason to justify calling out Burgess, M.D. on “scientific nonsense.” According to David Graham at The Atlantic, this is something doctors have observed, but not researched in detail.
He next bashes the claims “that the American economic crisis was caused by abortions,” and “that an abortionist distributed ineffective birth control to teenagers so he could make millions of dollars performing the procedure,” which turn out to be…RH Reality Check’s paraphrasing of things allegedly said by witnesses at the Texas House State Affairs Committee hearing. No names, no quotes, nothing we can truly judge the merits of. And we all know how fair the RH crew is with context.
That said, it’s not exactly going out on a limb to say that slaughtering over 50 million people before they get a chance to become workers, buyers, and taxpayers has a price. And anyone who makes his living by killing babies is, by definition, capable of anything.
Then we learn that the admitting privileges requirement is a bad idea because the Texas Hospital Association says so. That would be the same THA whose expert witness, Stacy Wilson, got her facts wrong:
Ms. Wilson falsely argued that hospitals would not grant admitting privileges to doctors who perform elective abortions outside the hospital because the hospital wouldn’t allow elective abortions within the hospital: “If you have a physician that is only practicing in a clinic . . . the hospital is unlikely to give privileges.”
Ms. Wilson is apparently unaware that the reason a doctor would have admitting privileges would be to treat complications of the abortion, including hemorrhage, uterine and bowel perforations, and infections after the abortion. There is no reason to claim that the purpose of those privileges would be to allow performing the abortion itself within the hospital walls.
He also accuses Rep. Cindy Burkett of being unable to even define “admitting privileges” when asked, which is how the Dallas News’s Claire Cardona reports it, albeit again without direct quotes. If true and fairly characterized, this would admittedly be an inexcusable blunder. Then again, it would also be the first one Eichenwald has actually found. One politician’s lack of preparation hardly demonstrates the culture of willful ignorance he’s so desperate to convince you dominates Texas.
So he channels the rest of his rage by returning to Rep. Laubenberg for an extended diatribe. To hear him tell it, she “was not only unable to answer questions, but she seemed unfamiliar with the legislation,” “didn’t comprehend how doctors receive admitting privileges,” and “simply refused to respond” to anything that was too tough for her.
A “Twitter record,” because “there is no official transcript of what was said.”
Forgive me for opting to retain a bit of skepticism as to whether Laubenberg really acquitted herself that badly.
In the final analysis, Kurt Eichenwald falls well short of the evidence necessary to prove the pro-lifers he scorns “deserve not only our contempt, but the contempt of every decent human being.” In fact, “contemptible” might be a pretty apt description for the lies, exaggerations, half-truths, and omissions he needed to pad this farce with.
UPDATE: For what it’s worth, in response to getting called out for his demagoguery on Twitter, Eichenwald completely lost it (language warning) (all typos preserved from original):
Excuse what will be my furious response, but like MOST F*CKING conservatives, u have NO F*CKING clue about this topic, and as a result are KILLING people from ur smug, ignorant arrogance. Yes, doctors know more that u, u POS. Planned Parenthood does breast exams and is part of a referral netwrok into providers who offer free mammo/surgery/path/chemo. AND THEY CANT FIND THE F*CKING PATIENTS ANYMORE because STUPID, ARROGANT sons of bitches like u who dont care one F*CK about poor women smile and sneer in ur ARROGANCE that u know more than the people IN THE F*CKING BUSINESS OF TREATING THESE WOMEN! this is the problem with modern conservs. U know longer know the difference between what u want to believe and reality. So yes, the medical providers who treat and diagnose breast cancer in women say u are FULL OF SHIT and are the CAUSE of ppl dying, but that is an uncomfortable reality for u, so like most modern consers, u’ll do some google search looking 4 some political BULLSHIT website that will back up your STUPID arrogance, based on bits and pieces of fact and NO reality. Talk to ppl, you arropgant SOB. And if ur religious, pray to God to forgive u for murdering women out of ur own smug ignorance.
For my other followers, I apologize for losing it just now. I have seen more cancer pts in last 3 weeks than I can say, and have watched their bravery & their challenges. And when some smug SOB barfs up BS conserv talking points, which I KNOW are killing ppl, I lose it now.
Vanity Fair professionalism, ladies and gentlemen.
By now, most members of the pro-life community have heard the story of Abby Johnson, the former Planned Parenthood administrator who became pro-life after watching a 13-week-old baby fight for his life during an abortion. (Read her testimony here.) Johnson watched the sonogram screen and saw the little boy pulling away from the instruments. The experience permanently changed her, and led to her dedicating her life to stopping abortion.
What fewer pro-lifers know is that Abby Johnson was not the first abortion provider to be affected by seeing an ultrasound. Dr. Joseph Randall was an abortionist who practiced for many years before leaving and becoming pro-life. The reasons why he left the abortion business were varied, but he mentioned that seeing the baby on the ultrasound affected him very deeply. He says:
I think the greatest thing that got to us was the ultrasound. At that time, the ultrasound, or soundwave picture which was moving, called a “real-time ultrasound,” showed the baby on TV. The baby really came alive on TV and was moving. And that picture, that picture of the baby on ultrasound bothered me more than anything else… We lost two nurses. They couldn’t take looking at.
These two nurses quit when they realized that the baby was a living being who reacted and struggled during the abortion process. They were able to see the unborn child in his full humanity, in real time, and to identify him as a victim of the abortion.
Joan Appleton was the head nurse at an abortion clinic in Washington, D.C. She was also the head of a chapter of NOW, and was completely dedicated to promoting and providing abortions.
In her testimony, Appleton describes how she began to question her role in the abortion clinic when she realized that so many women suffered psychological problems after their abortions. She wondered why, if abortion was such a good thing for women, it was so damaging to them emotionally. But she was also shaken by watching a baby aborted on the ultrasound screen:
And I too had seen an ultrasound abortion. It was, we did first trimester, this was late first trimester, probably early second trimester, really, we could look to 13.7 weeks. Give or take. I can’t remember offhand what the specific problem was, but we wanted to do the abortion by ultrasound, to make sure that we did indeed get the entire, all the baby. The terminology was that we wanted to make sure we had the entire pregnancy. I handled the ultrasound while the doctor performed the procedure, and I directed him while I was watching the screen. I saw the baby pull away. I saw the baby open his mouth. I had seen Silent Scream a number of times, but it didn’t affect me – to me it was just more pro-life propaganda. But I couldn’t deny what I saw on the screen. After that procedure, I was shaking, literally, but managed to pull it together, and continue on with the day.
(This quote comes from a speech that can be found here.)
Unlike Abby Johnson, Appleton did not immediately leave the clinic. However, the process of her leaving was initiated by both the visual evidence of the ultrasound and her growing concern for the emotional well-being of her patients.
Appleton became a pro-life speaker and participated in a number of events with the Pro-Life Action League, where she shared her testimony publicly in the video Meet the Abortion Providers. Sadly, Appleton died in 2012.
In 1984, the late Dr. Bernard Nathanson created the groundbreaking video “The Silent Scream,” which showed a baby being aborted via ultrasound. In the late ’70s, Nathanson, who was the founder of NARAL and had an active role in making abortion legal in New York City, was beginning to have qualms about abortion. He stopped doing them but had not committed to the pro-life movement. According to Nathanson:
By 1984, however, I had begun to ask myself more questions about abortion: what actually goes on in an abortion? I had done many, but abortion is a blind procedure. The doctor does not see what he’s doing. He puts an instrument into a uterus and he turns on a motor, and the suction machine goes on and something is vacuumed out; it ends up as a little pile of meat in a gauze bag. I wanted to know what happened, so in 1984 I said to a friend of mine, who was doing 15 or maybe 20 abortions a day, “Look, do me a favor, Jay. Next Saturday, when you doing all these abortions, put an ultrasound device on the mother and tape it for me.”
He did, and when he looked at the tapes with me in an editing studio, he was so affected that he never did another abortion. I, though I had not done an abortion in five years, was shaken to the very roots of my soul by what I saw. (1)
“The Silent Scream” was widely criticized and condemned as a fraud by many pro-choicers, prompting some pro-lifers to issue the challenge to Planned Parenthood or other pro-choice groups to record a baby being aborted on an ultrasound themselves and see if they could discredit the video. As far as we know, no pro-choice group ever took them up on that challenge.
Even medical professionals acknowledge the power of ultrasounds to prick the consciences of abortion providers. An article in ObGyn News that was aimed at abortion providers said the following:
Staff members also may be affected by sonographic images and may need opportunities for venting their feelings and reconfirming their priorities… (2)
The ultrasound is a powerful tool for the pro-life movement. Pictures of unborn children, available now to anyone who wants to see them, make it very difficult for pro-abortion activists to lie about the development of the unborn baby. They have a powerful effect for the pro-life cause. They have convinced-abortion minded women to let their children live, convinced pro-choicers to become pro-life, and, in the cases we’ve seen, contributed to the conversion of abortion providers.
1. Nathanson, Bernard N, M.D The Hand of God: a Journey from Death to Life by the Abortion Doctor Who Changed His Mind (Washington DC: Regnery Publishing Inc, 1996) 140 – 141
2. cited in Rachel M MacNair, PhD. Achieving Peace in the Abortion War (New York: iUniverse, 2009) page 59
You’ve probably already heard about the bizarre “abortion contract” drawn up in 2007 between NBA player J.J. Redick and his ex-girlfriend, Vanessa Lopez. The “contract” stipulated that Lopez would receive $25,000 to abort the child, despite Redick’s denials that the baby was his. Redick also agreed to stay with Lopez for another year, and that any further contact would be considered “stalking.”
But the story gets even worse. Vanessa apparently signed the contract under duress hours before her abortion, while also under the influence of Valium.
Vanessa’s abortion documents, which she agreed to release to Jill Stanek’s blog, show that she signed the “contract” just hours before undergoing a second-trimester abortion while 16-17 weeks pregnant. I really have no words to describe the documents and e-mail exchanges between Redick and his lawyers, so I’ll go with Stanek’s description: “crass and sexist.” They required, among other humiliations, Vanessa to immediately turn over her medical records to “prove” she was actually pregnant and had gone through with the abortion. Redick’s lawyer demanded these records mere hours after Lopez underwent a gruesome D&E procedure, in which the fetus is dismembered.
In the waiting room, Vanessa completed a pre-abortion questionnaire in which she said she felt “confused,” “sad,” guilty,” and “forced into it.” Despite having knowledge that this was a coerced abortion, late-term abortionist Joshua Perper performed one anyway.
A year later, Vanessa was showing symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder.
“She told me she wanted to have this baby but he was adamant in his opposition. She thought if she did what he wanted her to do, he would continue the relationship with her,” a source close to Vanessa told Stanek. “She had no attorney. She hoped somehow, some way that doing what he wanted her to do would benefit her in the long run.”
Needless to say, she never heard from Redick again.
This is exactly why I’ve described abortion as a slimebag’s best friend. J.J. Redick – who describes himself on Twitter as a “Christian” – is a disgrace.
It’s a bad time of year to be a pro-abortion Texan, and it just got worse. Today, Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott announced the conclusion of a state Medicaid fraud investigation which resulted in improper activity from Planned Parenthood Gulf Coast, Inc., and fined the organization $1.4 million for fraudulently over-billing the taxpayer-funded Medicaid program.
According to Abbott’s office:
The State’s investigation revealed that Planned Parenthood Gulf Coast improperly billed the Texas Medicaid program for products and services that were never actually rendered, not medically necessary, and were not covered by the Medicaid program – and were therefore not eligible for reimbursement. For example, state investigators determined that Planned Parenthood Gulf Coast falsified material information in patients’ medical records in order to support fraudulent reimbursement claims to the Medicaid program.
Under the agreement announced today, Planned Parenthood Gulf Coast must pay $1.4 million to resolve the Medicaid fraud enforcement action. Because Medicaid is jointly funded by the State and the federal government, the federal government is entitled to a portion of the Texas recovery[.]
This news is a fascinating check and balance of the public funding Planned Parenthood receives nationwide and in many states, though Texas is one that has actually cut its funding.
The Planned Parenthood office that has been fined has received plenty of government funding, however. Its own website reports that its operating revenues from 2011, the last reported year, came from “49% Government Contracts for Health Services (for low-income and income eligible women),” which was the largest percentage of its funding.
On its last reported Form 990 tax return, the office shows revenue of $20,680,450.
It also shows $7,618,423 of program service revenue from Medicaid.
With millions of dollars going in and out, an organization should have top-notch accountants and staff who monitor and audit financials to be sure that the public money entrusted to them is spent on its directed purpose. Technically, federal funding cannot be used for providing abortions, but since money is fungible, it can be channeled into a legal services and still, theoretically, support the abortions – whether it is coded that way or not.
Now it seems that the home of one of the biggest abortion clinics in the nation cannot account for its own financials. Considering the compensations of the organization’s top employees, also reported by its Form 990 tax return, it would behoove the public to ask for more audits and accountability.
A $1.4-million mistake is a pretty big one to stomach in today’s economic climate. Whether abortion is legal or not, mismanaging money is still unacceptable and should be addressed by all sides of the issue. Today the Texas attorney general has taken a massive step in showing the public that things may not be as they seem in the business side of abortion facilities – to the tune of more money than most top-paid professionals would make in years. That’s a lot of mistakes. And Planned Parenthood will now pay for $1.4 million’s worth of mismanagement of public funds.