Life Advocacy Briefing

July 2, 2012

The Ruling / Boehner & McConnell on the Ruling / What’s Important … and What’s Not
Scandalizing Kids / Welcome Back, Fr. Frank / Truth to Power / Even in Maryland
On the Brink / Reminder from the Manhattan Declaration
And from Americans United for Life’s Dr. Charmaine Yoest
And from National Right to Life’s Carol Tobias / First Take on Ruling from Life Issues Institute

The Ruling

‘THIS IS WHAT WE CAME TO DO,’ declared ex-House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-SanFrancisco), in response to the Supreme Court’s stunning ruling last Thursday upholding much of the ObamaCare law.

She and her followers “came” to power in Washington for the purpose, evidently, of laying huge tax increases on the American people, jeopardizing the financial viability of employers across the country, putting government in charge of our health care and, in the words of Liberty Counsel’s Mat Staver, enacting “the largest funding of abortion in history.”

The Supreme Court’s Majority Opinion made clear that the Justices were not ruling on the wisdom of the law but on Congress’s Constitutional authority to enact even bad law. “We do not consider whether the Act embodies sound policies,” reads the Majority Opinion, delivered by Chief Justice John Roberts. “That judgment is entrusted to the Nation’s elected leaders,” the Opinion continued. “We ask only whether Congress has the power under the Constitution to enact the challenged provisions.” Unfortunately, as to the lynchpin of the ObamaCare framework – the “individual mandate” – the Court concluded that yes, Congress does have that power, provided one views the associated penalty as a “tax.”

The Majority Opinion concluded with another disclaimer of sorts: “[T]he Court does not express any opinion on the wisdom of the Affordable Care Act [ObamaCare]. Under the Constitution,” noted the Court, “that judgment is reserved to the people.”

Constitutional scholars and lawyers can spend gallons of ink and hours of time debating whether the Supreme Court’s ruling was proper in response to the case presented to it, but many things are undebatable: Enacting ObamaCare was the wrong thing to do, and it must be righted by the people who hold the ultimate power in the United States: the voters.

We are thanking God today for those who have been on the front lines of resistance to this law and to the regulations which the Obama Regime has promulgated under it and who have not simply waited for the Court to make the definitive judgment.

Resist we must. And by the grace of God, this law, constitutional or not, will not withstand the 2012 election.


Boehner & McConnell on the Ruling

THE G.O.P. LEADERS OF BOTH HOUSES WEIGHED IN on the ObamaCare ruling shortly after it was released.

Said Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell: “The American people weren’t waiting on the Supreme Court to tell them whether they supported this law. That question was settled two-and-a-half years ago. … Americans,” said the Kentucky Republican, “want it repealed, and that’s precisely what we intend to do. Americans want us to start over. And today’s decision does nothing to change that. The court’s ruling,” he went on, “doesn’t mark the end of a debate. It marks a fresh start on the road to repeal.”

House Speaker John Boehner declared: “There’s a lot of resolve amongst our colleagues and amongst the American people – to stop a law that’s hurting our economy, driving up the cost of health care and making it more difficult for employers to hire new workers. The American people,” said the Ohio Republican, “want this [law] repealed.”

Speaker Boehner announced plans to call a repeal measure for a vote when the House returns from its Independence Day recess.


What’s Important … and What’s Not

SENATE MAJORITY LEADER HARRY REID’s CONTEMPT for the cause of Life was on full display last week when he took to the floor to announce he would not permit a vote on an amendment by Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) to “clarify,” writes Pete Kasperowicz for The Hill, “that life begins at conception.”

True, Sen. Paul was seeking to attach his Life at Conception Act to a flood insurance bill, of all things, but the idea of loading up Senate bills with somewhat unrelated amendments is a long-standing Senate tradition.

Sen. Reid’s tone in blocking the Paul amendment was unmistakable. “‘I’m told last night that one of our Republican Senators wants to offer an amendment – listen to this one – wants to offer an amendment on when life begins,’ [Sen.] Reid said,” writes Mr. Kasperowicz. “‘There will not be a vote on that on flood insurance. We’ll either do flood insurance with amendments that deal with flood insurance, or we won’t do it … . I don’t understand what this is all about,’ [Mr.] Reid added,” reports The Hill writer. “‘But I want everyone to know: This flood insurance is extremely important. The big pushers of this bill are Republican Senators, veteran Republican Senators. They better work on their side of the aisle,’” he said, as reported in The Hill, “‘because I am not going to put up with that.’”


Scandalizing Kids

PRES. BARACK OBAMA TOOK HIS RADICAL AGENDA TO A HIGH SCHOOL in New Hampshire last Monday, reports Kathleen Gilbert for, “tout[ing] his support for funding Planned Parenthood, forcing religious employers to pay for birth control and abortifacient drugs and ending the military’s ‘Don’t Ask/Don’t Tell’ policy on homosexuality at a campaign event before high school seniors …” in Durham.

Citing as source, Miss Gilbert writes, “Obama told the students that, by voting for him over GOP Presidential contender Mitt Romney, ‘You can decide that instead of restricting access to birth control or defunding Planned Parenthood, we should make sure that in this country, women control their own healthcare choices.’”

We at Life Advocacy find this exploitation of high school students shameful.


Welcome Back, Fr. Frank

THE DIRECTOR AND FOUNDER OF PRIESTS FOR LIFE, the beloved Fr. Frank Pavone, has been vindicated by the Vatican.

For the past year, Fr. Pavone has been under orders by the Archbishop of Amarillo to attend to priestly duties at a Texas parish, severely curbing his leadership for the cause of Life. The directive carried with it a suggestion of improprieties, prompting Fr. Pavone to appeal to Rome to restore his good name.

That restoration occurred last week with a declaration by the Vatican’s Congregation for the Clergy that Fr. Frank Pavone is – and continues to be – a priest in good standing throughout the world.

The statement lifts a manmade cloud from Fr. Pavone and from Priests for Life, a valuable ministry in the cause of Life.

We at Life Advocacy extend to Fr. Pavone and Priests for Life our heartfelt congratulations and appreciation for outstanding leadership. Welcome back!


Truth to Power

THE RED CHINESE CONSULATE IN LOS ANGELES WAS THE TARGET last Tuesday of a protest of Beijing’s “draconian family planning policies,” notes a news release from the pro-life youth group Survivors, “and countless human rights abuses.”

The youthful demonstrators were motivated by tragic news out of rural Communist China about the brutal forced abortion of a seven-month-along baby. The killing was carried out to enforce Beijing’s “one-child policy.” Publication of a photo of the bloodied body lying alongside his mother has sparked protests around the world and, reportedly, even unrest in China itself.

“I can’t believe that a woman could be dragged screaming from her house and her baby butchered before her eyes,” said a Survivors volunteer named Melinda, quoted in the news release. She criticized our own government as well as the Beijing butchers, calling “atrocious” the reality “that our government can stand by to see that kind of human rights abuse and still have regular political relations with the regime perpetuating it.”


Even in Maryland

WHEN THE PUBLIC LEARNS about the shocking conditions in abortuaries – usually through news of a tragedy – public officials respond, provided the public keeps up the pressure.

In Pennsylvania, it took the shocking results of a grand jury probe against West Philadelphia butcher Kermit Gosnell, now in jail awaiting prosecution on numerous murder charges, but the legislature and governor this year enacted a comprehensive licensing statute subjecting abortuaries to surprise inspections.

Now state officials in Maryland are putting into place a new set of regulations to, in the words of Family Research Council’s Tony Perkins, writing in his Washington Update last week, “clamp down on abortion clinics across the state. …

“The Maryland Health Dept. plans to increase oversight of abortion clinics … in reaction to a horrible botched abortion in Elkton,” writes Mr. Perkins, “by requiring them to ‘meet new guidelines on anesthesia, emergency services, lab work and other areas.’ As many as 20 facilities,” Mr. Perkins reports, “will have to be licensed.”

If citizens keep the spotlight and the pressure on to be sure “health” bureaucrats follow through, one of the abortion industry’s favorite havens – so close to Washington, DC – may become much less hospitable to abusing women while killing their progeny.


On the Brink

June 25, 2012, BreakPoint with Eric Metaxas

On first hearing, it sounds like something out of science fiction: mapping the genome of a person who has not been born yet. But that’s exactly what geneticists at the University of Washington announced that they were able to do.

Their accomplishment has been called a “glance into the future.” But the question is: What kind of future?

Writing in the journal Science Translational Medicine, the researchers described how they reconstructed the genome of an unborn child using a blood sample from a pregnant woman and a saliva sample from the father.

According to the New York Times, they used a combination of “new high-speed DNA sequencing and some statistical and computational acrobatics.” Their accomplishment “heralds an era in which parents might find it easier to know the complete DNA blueprint of a child months before it was born.”

Now, “high-speed DNA sequencing” and “statistical and computational acrobatics” sounds impressive. But this begs the most important question: Why would parents want to know their unborn child’s complete DNA blueprint months before he or she is born?

The specter of Gattaca (the 1998 film about a society in which most children are made-to-order) is so visible in this story that even the New York Times warned of serious ethical considerations; considerations such as the possibility of an “increase [in] abortions for reasons that have little to do with medical issues and more to do with parental preferences for traits in children.”

Not only would fetuses with genetic diseases be aborted, as they usually are now, but the article says “it is also possible that parents may be tempted to terminate if the fetus lacked a favorable trait like athletic prowess.”

Marcy Darnovsky of the Center for Genetics & Society told the Times that the technology could “spur questions on ‘who deserves to be born.’” In a similar vein, Dr. Stephen A. Brown of the University of Vermont spoke of a move toward “positive selection” – a euphemism for God-like decisions about who should be allowed to be born.

For all the talk about “better and better prenatal diagnosis,” experience teaches us to be skeptical about where this genetic foresight will lead.

For starters, there’s what happens to unborn children who are diagnosed in utero with genetic illnesses: relatively few of them are ever born. Prenatal diagnosis already functions as a kind of “weeding out” process: Adding “thousands of genetic diseases” to the list, as this new technology will make possible, simply means more dead children.

And, for the foreseeable future, this technology cannot heal anyone – it can only give prospective parents reasons to kill their unborn child. A child made in the image of God.

Anybody who thinks that parents won’t be tempted to turn to their local geneticist for the perfect baby has not been paying attention. We already live in a culture where some parents demand that doctors prescribe a Schedule II amphetamine, Adderall, just to help their kids compete against their peers. And a culture that can’t bring itself to meaningfully condemn sex-selection abortion, at home or abroad, will not stand in the way of parents who want to play God.

All of which means this “glance into the future” the stuff of science fiction nightmares.


Reminder from the Manhattan Declaration

Though the ruling does indeed provide the final word on the constitutionality of certain provisions of the law, including the crucial “individual mandate,” we must remember what it does not say. Today’s decision says nothing about the contraception mandate, nor does it address the question of abortion funding. Lawsuits on these specific questions continue to make their way through the justice system.

Had the law been struck down, these questions would be moot. But now more than ever, advocates of life and the rights of religious conscience must pray for justice and support our partners in the legal battle.


And from Americans United for Life’s Charmaine Yoest

The Affordable Care Act forces an abortion agenda on the American people unlike anything seen since Roe v. Wade.


And from National Right to Life’s Carol Tobias

If Pres. Obama wins re-election, it will mean massive abortion subsidies, and it will put the lives of millions at risk through systematic government-imposed rationing of lifesaving medical care.


First Take on Ruling from Life Issues Institute

June 28, 2012, commentary by Bradley Mattes, executive director, Life Issues Institute

In arguably one of the most contentious decisions of the decade, the US Supreme Court has sacrificed the interests of the people to an uncaring government bureaucracy. The implications of this decision will go down in history as devastating to our nation.

The Court ruled the entirety of ObamaCare constitutional. This means Americans will have to surrender control of their healthcare to a callous government entity. It is a demoralizing defeat for all those who believe in individual freedom.

What will health care in America look like under ObamaCare? This legislation is riddled with anti-Life measures. You can expect to see rationing of medical care. It will also lead to passive and active euthanasia of our elderly and chronically ill. Expect the number of abortions to skyrocket, funded by taxpayers provided through a monthly secretive surcharge. Americans will now be forced to comply and forego their personal and religious beliefs.

The Court’s ruling is a tragedy which will open up the floodgates – or more accurately, the “bloodgates” – of abortion throughout the country. ObamaCare is not the cure for America; instead, it will prove to be a death sentence.