Life Advocacy Briefing

January 21, 2013

Good Idea / Fight the Filibuster Change! / Identity Crisis / New Hand at Helm
State Court Rules ‘Child’ Includes One Yet Unborn / Tick Tock / Time to Wake Up, America

Good Idea

HERE’s SOMETHING INDIVIDUAL PRO-LIFE AMERICANS CAN DO to observe the 40th anniversary of the Supreme Court edicts decriminalizing abortion in America – and to honor the lives sacrificed to the abortion cartel.

Dianne Edmondson of Republican National Coalition for Life (RNC/Life) is urging Americans to build makeshift children’s memorials at US abortuaries as a public witness.

“When people want to express their sorrow for tragic deaths,” she notes in an RNC/Life bulletin, “they often bring symbols of their grief to the sites of the deaths, including candles, flowers and messages. When children are killed, those symbols often include stuffed animals and balloons … .

“RNC for Life is urging those who value the sanctity of life to remember those innocent babes” whose lives have been snuffed by abortionists over the past 40 years “by placing flowers, balloons and stuffed animals at the approximately 600 abortion facilities across America next Tuesday [tomorrow]. We also encourage you to pray silently in front of the abortion facility after placing your memorial.

“You don’t have to spend much time at the abortuary,” she notes, “and you don’t have to spend much money on the symbols you place there. But these memorials – hopefully 600+ of them – will send a message to all who see them: Some of the 55 million innocents were killed here, and we grieve for them.”


Fight the Filibuster Change!

A MAJOR FIGHT IS BREWING IN THE U.S. SENATE – a bid by Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) to curtail the Senate’s time-honored filibuster rule which ensures minority-party Senators the right to attempt to block pending legislation through extended debate. Under the filibuster procedure, most legislation and appointee confirmations must clear a 60-vote threshold in order to come to an actual vote for passage.

The rule functions to prevent the Senate’s Majority from riding roughshod over the Minority, and Sen. Reid, having vigorously opposed altering the rule when Majority Republicans threatened it several years ago, is now seeking to change the rule, effectively to obliterate it.

Implications for the cause of Life are clear: How will we have hope of blocking confirmation of a radical pro-abortion cabinet officer, judge or Supreme Court Justice? We cannot hope the more conservative House of Representatives will block such moves; the Senate holds sole jurisdiction in such matters.

Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) is leading the charge against the Reid raid, and such pro-life organizations as Eagle Forum and Susan B. Anthony List have raised the alarm among their members.

We urge our readers to contact their two US Senators at 1-202/224-3121 (Capitol switchboard) and/or at their home offices to urge them to vote against killing the filibuster. More senior Senators even in Sen. Reid’s party are wavering; victory is possible if the American people raise our voices.


Identity Crisis

PLANNED PARENTHOOD MADE AN ANNOUNCEMENT last week that could change the course of the abortion debate in America. The abortion cartel’s lead operative is shedding the label “pro-choice.”

“Planned Parenthood Exec. Vice President Dawn Laguens spoke about the problematic use of ‘choice’ at a press briefing Wednesday,” reports pro-life blogger Jill Stanek, who publishes her commentaries and reports at She explained, writes Mrs. Stanek, “women once had way fewer choices than they do today. Now, she said, maybe “‘choice’ as [the] word sounds frivolous.’

“‘Pro-choice’ has certainly been taking more and more of a beating in polls,” notes Mrs. Stanek. “[Last] year a record low 41% of Americans said they considered themselves ‘pro-choice’ in Gallup’s annual survey.”

So what label is Planned Parenthood adopting and expecting its co-belligerents to use? Here is where their sidestep becomes especially risky.

“‘Planned Parenthood’s newest messaging will be moving away from the language of choice,’ announced Buzz Feed [Internet news digest],” quoted by Mrs. Stanek. “‘Rather than selecting a new term to replace ‘pro-choice,’ Planned Parenthood hopes to move beyond such terms entirely  and present abortion as something too complicated to be divided into two sides,’” reports Buzz Feed. “‘A soon-to-be-released Planned Parenthood video takes this new approach, casting labels like pro-life and pro-choice as limiting and abortion as a complex and personal decision.’”

We will grant that repeating the phrase “personal decision” and telling stories instead of using labels could be effective in some settings. But in the short-hand of media and campaign messaging, Planned Parenthood is giving up an enormous investment in branding and essentially starting over.

Planned Parenthood’s Cecile Richards, notes Buzz Feed, quoted by Mrs. Stanek, insists the label shedding offers her outfit “‘“an opportunity to talk to an enormous number of people we haven’t been talking to as much as we should.”’”

Mrs. Stanek points out the new tactic “does indeed reflect a victory on our part. We have made the term ‘pro-choice’ synonymous with ‘pro-abortion,’” she writes.

She also muses whether the abortion behemoth “brought other abortion groups in” on the significant strategy shift “or went rogue. Such a decision must make things uncomfortable for NARAL Pro-Choice America, for instance,” she writes, “which just announced its annual ‘Blog for Choice Day.’”

We at Life Advocacy, proudly pro-life, counsel confident policy advocacy on specific pro-life reforms as a way of defining the pro-life label. And we embrace Students for Life of America’s Kristan Hawkins’s adoption of the term “Abortion Abolitionists,” reflecting the philosophical connection between the modern pro-life movement and the cause of slavery abolition (when the advocates of slavery insisted they were for “choice,” not actually “pro-slavery”).

But we have a different recommendation for the abortion lobby: If you can’t say something nice, say nothing at all!


New Hand at Helm

THE NATIONAL ABORTION RIGHTS ACTION LEAGUE UNVEILED its new president last week, set to take over in late January, after NARAL’s celebration of 40 years of legalized baby killing.

NARAL chief Nancy Keenan, who announced her retirement last May amid sighs about how young the participants in the pro-life opposition are becoming, will be succeeded by 42-year-old left-wing operative Ilyse Hogue, who, according to pro-life blogger Jill Stanek ( “has close to zero experience in the pro-abortion lobby itself.”

Turns out Ms. Hogue has worked for such radical outfits as Greenpeace and, more recently working for the leftwing Media Matters for America. She “expressed support” in the early part of this century, reports Mrs. Stanek, “for Young Democratic Socialists, the youth arm of Democratic Socialists of America,” calling it an “‘important partner’” to the organization for which she was working, Rainforest Action Network. And she “currently serves on the steering committee,” reports Mrs. Stanek, “for the Center for Corporate Policy, a partner organization of the Institute for Policy Studies,” a leading leftwing thinktank.

She appears to be a consummate community organizer, and Mrs. Stanek warns, “I believe Hogue is more savvy than Keenan. She is more driven. She will serve NARAL as a fiercer opponent of the pro-life movement.” But with public opinion shifting ever more toward the pro-life viewpoint, Mrs. Stanek predicts, “The days of legal abortion are numbered; Ilyse Hogue has been given the wheel of a sinking ship.” Amen.


State Court Rules ‘Child’ Includes One Yet Unborn

THE ALABAMA SUPREME COURT TOOK A STEP FORWARD Jan. 11 toward restoring the right to life of unborn children in American jurisprudence.

In a case related to the state’s chemical endangerment statute, the court declared that the statute’s term “child” applies to both born and unborn children.

The appellant claimed she should not be prosecuted for having endangered her unborn son, who died 19 minutes after birth, just 25 weeks after having been conceived. The mother “admitted to smoking meth three days before” the little boy’s birth, reports John-Henry Westen for

The court explained its ruling, reports LifeSiteNews, with this declaration: “‘The decision of this court today is in keeping with the widespread legal recognition that unborn children are persons with rights that should be protected by law. … Today,’ the court added, ‘ the only major area in which unborn children are denied legal protection is abortion, and that denial is only because of the dictates of Roe.’” The court went on to cite a provision of the state constitution which closely follows the “inalienable rights” language of America’s Declaration of Independence.

The Liberty Counsel pro bono conservative law firm filed an amicus brief in the case, writes Bob Unruh for, which was designed, the firm said, to “provide the Alabama Supreme Court with a thorough historical review of legal protection for unborn children, dating from ancient Greece to the present day.’”

Liberty Counsel founder Mat Staver told Mr. Unruh, “‘The US Supreme Court’s abortion cases are an aberration to law and stand on an island by themselves.’” He predicted, reports WND, “‘That island will one day disappear.’”


Tick Tock

THE LAST REMAINING ABORTION SHOP IN MISSISSIPPI is desperately seeking to hang on, despite being in violation of a state law intended to protect women from fly-by abortionists.

The Jackson Women’s Health [sic] Organization (J.W.H.O.) has filed a lawsuit seeking permission to flaunt Mississippi’s latest abortion-customer-protection law, which forbids abortion by doctors who do not maintain admitting privileges at nearby hospitals. The statute is clearly intended to provide a safety net for emergency care for patients in abortions-gone-wrong.

Of J.W.H.O.’s four contract abortionists, three fly in from other states and then leave to carry on their business elsewhere. “All local hospitals,” reports Operation Rescue, reporting on the State’s response brief, “have rejected out-of-state abortionists’ applications for hospital privileges.” JWHO’s sole resident abortionist, reports OR, “does few, if any abortions.”

And it gets better. “Attorneys for the State,” reports OR, “point out that JWHO’s owner, Diane Derzis, has been charged previously with health and safety violations so severe that it led the State of Alabama to issue an order closing another of Derzis’s abortion clinics … in Birmingham last year.”

Nor is it just state government that is raising concerns about JWHO. “Abortionist Joseph Booker, who worked at JWHO until July 2010 filed suit against his former employer,” reports OR, “alleging that Derzis had ‘instituted numerous practices that jeopardized the health and safety of patients’ including not using a ‘local doctor who has hospital admitting privileges’ in the event of abortion complications.”

Predictions appear valid that it is only a matter of time – and brief time, at that – before Mississippi becomes the first abortion-free state.

Pastors led by the Rev. Flip Benham are planning a prayer rally in Jackson tomorrow (Tuesday), claiming Mississippi for God as their unique observance of the 40th anniversary of Roe and Doe.


Time to Wake Up, America

Jan. 14, 2013, commentary by Star Parker, president, Center for Urban Renewal & Education, broadly excerpted from

The number 40 has great significance in the Bible. Perhaps best known is the 40 years that the Israelites were condemned to wander in the desert before being permitted entry into the Promised Land. Maybe this mystical quantity will bear significance as we note, this month, the 40th year since the Roe v. Wade decision legalized abortion in America.

Forty years we have lived with the silent – and sometimes not-so-silent – holocaust in our midst, as the lives of 55 million innocent and unborn children have been killed, plucked from their journey to enter this world.

Who were they? Who would they have become?

The unmarried graduate student who gave birth to high-tech impresario, and co-founder of Apple, Steve Jobs, may well have aborted this child, had her pregnancy occurred in1973 rather than 1955.

This past week, former Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, recovering victim of a crazed gunman, visited, along with her husband Mark Kelly, Newtown, Connecticut, site of the latest horrible shooting incident. In their public remarks, they expressed concern that our society has become “desensitized to acts of violence.”

Appropriate words, I think, that certainly should be considered in the broadest possible sense in our effort to grasp our willingness to tolerate, even nurture, the open and flourishing presence of evil in our society.

It takes a deadening of the soul to permit this, a state of being “desensitized.” We know it because when those senses are awakened, our indifference and unwillingness to tolerate evil is pushed back.

When William Wilberforce fought to abolish the slave trade in England, he moved a boatload of the elite into proximity of a slave ship to smell the stench. Their senses were awakened, and a major step forward was achieved to end the horror. …

Slowly, America seems to be coming to its senses regarding destruction of unborn children. [Here the writer cites the Time magazine cover story proclaiming that “abortion rights activists” have been losing since their 1973 landmark court victory and notes the Time writer’s reference to ultrasound.]

… The graphic ultrasound picture, showing the growing and moving fetus, has raised awareness that this unborn child is alive and that abortion is murder. Ultrasound is sensitizing a desensitized American public that has been willing to tolerate this horror over these 40 years.

Wars are not won overnight. Victory is achieved battle by battle. Wilberforce did not stop slavery, but he stopped the slave trade. President Abraham Lincoln’s first aspiration was not total abolishment of slavery in America but making it illegal in new entrants to the Union. …

We must continue to work to win the war and awaken the American soul, so that 40 years after Roe v. Wade, we bring an end to the scourge of legal abortion in America.