Life Advocacy Briefing

June 13, 2022

Trouble at the Court? / Speaker Pelosi’s Altered Universe
Taxing Us for Military Abortions? / Unexpected Breakthrough
Really? / Stateside / Focusing on the Fundamental Question

Trouble at the Court?

TODAY, JUNE 13, IS THE DATE SET BY RADICAL LEFTISTS to shut down the Supreme Court, reports Clare Marie Merkowsky for LifeSiteNews, “in order to prevent a ruling that could allow states to outlaw abortion.” As of this writing the Court has not yet handed down its anticipated opinion vacating the 49-year-old Roe v. Wade edict.

“The radical group ShutDownDC,” reports Ms. Merkowsky, “has publicly called for demonstrators to block the streets around the Supreme Court on Monday, June 13, in the hopes of stopping the Supreme Court from overturning” its legalization of abortion across America.

“‘On June 13, one of the Supreme Court’s 2022 decision days,’” according to a declaration on the group’s website, quoted by LifeSiteNews, “‘we plan to blockade the streets around the Supreme Court to rise up for the transformative change that our communities need.’” Huh?

Quoting a report from the Washington Free Beacon, Ms. Merkowsky writes, “One of the demonstration’s organizers claimed that the goal is to ‘expand the current political crisis by shutting down the Supreme Court.’” We wonder which of the Democratic leaders in the US House and Senate will appear with the insurrectionists just down the street from the Capitol.

“Last month,” reports LifeSiteNews, “the Department of Homeland Security revealed that ‘law enforcement agencies are investigating social-media threats to burn down or storm the Supreme Court building and murder Justices and their clerks, as well as attacks targeting places of worship.’ Organizers of the blockade,” reports Ms. Merkowsky, “have openly bragged of their targeting of pro-life Supreme Court Justices.”


Speaker Pelosi’s Altered Universe

U.S. HOUSE SPEAKER NANCY PELOSI (D-SanFrancisco) early this month “suggested … that the legislative filibuster should be abolished from US Senate rules so Democrats,” writes Calvin Freiburger for LifeSiteNews, “can more easily enshrine abortion-on-demand and same-sex marriage” in federal law.

Appearing to have no clue as to the mood of the American electorate, the left-wing leader declared, quoted by Mr. Freiburger, “‘Elections have consequences, and if we can just pick up a couple more Democratic Senators to wipe back the filibuster, then we can again enshrine into the law a woman’s right to choose, enshrine marriage equality into the law, so that we don’t have fear of again diminishing freedom in our country.’” She made this off-tune declaration before “a crowd of supporters,” notes Mr. Freiburger.

“‘Our history has always been to expand freedom,’” declared Mrs. Pelosi, quoted by LifeSiteNews. “‘The courts have played a role in that, and now they may roll it back. But I have hope,’” she told the left-wingers, “‘because of all of you.’”


Taxing Us for Military Abortions?

NOT CONTENT TO CHARGE TAXPAYERS FOR ABORTIONS on indigent mothers by dropping the Hyde Amendment, the abortion fanatics in Congress have now filed a bill to use “government funds” to pay for abortions on military personnel and even to host abortions in military base medical facilities. Current law bars coverage of abortion under Tricare, the health insurance by which service members and their families are covered for medical care.

The bill has been filed by Rep. Jackie Speier (D-CA), who announced last November that she plans to retire after the current term. She is currently the chairman of the House Armed Services Committee subcommittee on military personnel, and she has garnered 81 co-sponsors for HR-2085.


Unexpected Breakthrough

AN ADVOCACY GROUP known as the Down Syndrome Diagnosis Network (DSDN), formed in 2014, has achieved a significant correction in the way physicians are advised to approach expectant parents with a pre-birth Down’s diagnosis.

DSDN has promoted “nationally recognized guidelines,” reports Cassy Fiano-Chesser for Live Action, “on how to deliver a diagnosis properly” given the disturbing tendency of too many doctors to treat the diagnosis as bad news and the practice by some of automatically assuming the parents will react by opting for abortion.

“The years of hard work and advocacy [are] slowly paying off,” reports Mrs. Chesser. “The American Academy of Pediatrics’ (AAP’s) new clinical report,” she notes, “includes updated guidelines on how physicians should deliver a diagnosis. Families are to be congratulated (no more apologizing for a child’s existence), to refer to the baby by name and to make sure a support person is there for the parents during the discussion.

“Physicians are also told to leave out their own personal biases,” writes the Live Action reporter, “to use up-to-date and accurate information, to use person-first language and to connect parents to local support groups and resources. Doctors are also told to emphasize the positive aspects of Down syndrome, including improved medical outcomes and the fact that people with Down syndrome and their families overwhelmingly report being happy with themselves and their lives.

“When it comes to prenatal diagnoses,” the public advice includes, according to Mrs. Chesser, “doctors are to include prenatal care considerations and to take a ‘non-directive’ approach to discussing options; in other words, no more assuming the parents want an abortion, making appointments without their permission first or pressuring them into abortions.”

Said Jenny DiBenedetto, DSDN founding director of medical outreach, reports Mrs. Chesser, “‘we made a real and tangible change in the way a Down syndrome diagnosis is going to be delivered. Us. This group of moms who never gave up. For [eight] years we advocated, and this week, when we were least expecting it, the medical community showed us that they listened. They heard us, they agreed with us, and they are advocating alongside us.’” Praise the Lord!



APPARENTLY, THE TERM ‘PRO-LIFE’ IS A POSITIVE SELF-DESCRIPTION for our politicians, no matter how deeply the abortion lobby has tried to smear the term – and our candidates who describe themselves that way – over the past near-50 years.

That’s the only conclusion we can draw from the outrageous – or hilarious? – term used recently by California’s left-wing Gov. Gavin Newsom (D) to describe what LifeSiteNews writer Michael Haynes calls “his $125 million budget expanding access to abortion.

“The $125 million ‘Reproductive Health Package,’ designed to make California even more attractive to abortion seekers in anticipation of a potential overturning of Roe v. Wade, was announced May 11.

“‘California will not stand idly by as extremists roll back our basic constitutional rights,’” said Mr. Newsom quoted by Mr. Haynes. “‘We’re going to fight like hell, making sure that all women – not just those in California – know that this state continues to recognize and protect their fundamental rights.’ …

“The package also includes ‘incentives for businesses to relocate and bring jobs to California,’” claimed the governor, quoted by Mr. Haynes, “‘from anti-abortion and anti-LGBTQ+ states’” – whatever they are.

And in a statement released May 13, notes Mr. Haynes, “the $127 million was styled ‘the governor’s pro-life agenda.’” Next thing you know, Mr. Newsom will be calling his lethal package “compassionate” or even “sensible.”

But then, he did describe his overall $300.7 billion – that’s with a B – budget as “‘historic investments.’”



  • EARLY THIS MONTH, THE A.C.L.U. FILED SUIT against a new Florida law banning the abortion killing of babies who have already achieved 15 weeks of human development. GOP Gov. Ron DeSantis responded to the suit with a declaration, reports Clare Marie Merkowsky for LifeSiteNews, that he is “‘confident this law will stand.’” The new law does have a few loopholes permitting abortion, notes Ms. Merkowsky – “in the instance of severe fetal anomaly, to save the mother’s life or to prevent substantial and irreversible physical impairment of the mother.” The law is set to take effect July 1 and succeeds a Florida statute barring abortions after 24 weeks of a baby’s development. “‘It’s a statement of our values that every life is important,’ [Gov.] DeSantis said as he signed the bill while surrounded by lawmakers, pro-life advocates and children. ‘We are here to defend those who can’t defend themselves,’ he added.”

  • THE NEW YORK SENATE HAS ADVANCED two bills designed, writes Nancy Flanders for Live Action, “to protect abortionists” in anticipation of the overturning of Roe v. Wade by the Supreme Court, likely to be announced by the end of this month. “SB-9080B would prohibit medical malpractice insurance companies,” she reports, “from taking adverse action against an abortionist who commits an abortion that is legal in New York on a woman from another state. This would include an abortionist in New York who sells the abortion pill via telehealth to a woman in another state where the abortion may be illegal.” In another proposal to establish New York as a safe haven for the abortion cartel, SB-9077A, notes Ms. Flanders, would “allow for legal protections for abortionists including protection from extradition, arrest and legal proceedings in other states regarding legal abortion committed in New York.” For her part, “Gov. Kathy Hochul [D] has said that the state of New York will be spending millions of dollars,” writes Ms. Flanders, “to help abortionists to upgrade their facilities for security and will also help abortion businesses expand in anticipation of women coming from out of state for an abortion.” We are about to see a dazzling display of imagination on the part of abortion worshipers if the Supreme Court, as anticipated, creates a patchwork of abortion policy by overturning Roe v. Wade without discovering that the Constitution protects the right to life.

  • MICHIGAN GOV. GRETCHEN WHITMER (D) SIGNED AN EXECUTIVE ORDER in late May trying to keep abortion available in her state despite a 1931 law barring abortion; still on the books, that law would be enforceable immediately if the Supreme Court vacates its Roe v. Wade edict. “In the executive order,” reports Cassy Fiano-Chesser for Live Action, “[Gov.] Whitmer decried the ‘threat’ to reproductive rights, which would ‘deny women the ability to make informed decisions about their health and bodies.’” The Whitmer order echoes the actions being taken by New York Gov. Kathy Hochul (D) to shelter the abortion industry. Calling the 1931 law “‘antiquated,’” notes Mrs. Chesser, the radical governor “made sure laws in pro-life states won’t affect Michigan abortionists. Under the executive order, Michigan state agencies are barred from cooperating with any other states or state authorities,” reports Mrs. Chesser, “that are attempting to prosecute someone for committing, undergoing or assisting in an abortion. It also states that departments and agencies ‘must … identify and assess potential opportunities to increase protections for reproductive health care. … No matter what happens in DC,’” declared Gov. Whitmer in a statement, quoted by Live Action, “‘I am going to fight like hell so every Michigander can make decisions about their own body.’” The governor’s action was applauded by Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel (D), who, like Mrs. Whitmer, is standing for re-election this year. “‘I have made clear,’” said Ms. Nessel, quoted by Mrs. Chesser, “‘that I will not use the resources of my office to enforce or defend Michigan’s 1931 statute criminalizing abortion.’” That statute, notes Mrs. Chesser, “was recently suspended by Judge Elizabeth Gleicher, who has previously argued cases on behalf of Planned Parenthood and is a donor to the abortion giant.” That ruling is expected to be appealed.


Focusing on the Fundamental Question

May 30, 2022, American Thinker commentary by Charlie Johnston

             It can be maddening and baffling to engage in debate with left-wing activists. Their love of ad hominem arguments and non sequiturs would make a sophist blush. Their stated principles shift during an argument like a kaleidoscope. That doesn’t even begin to take into account their shrieking rage and cosplay costumes. Yet on the abortion question, all their histrionics are designed to obscure the one fundamental question that must be answered before any further discussion can take place: Is the fetus a human person or is he not? If he is, he is entitled to all the protections all other human persons have. 

             As a young lawyer riding the circuit in Illinois, Abraham Lincoln was often an enigma to his colleagues. He seemed frequently to concede too many points to his opponent, yet he prevailed. His genius was to find the fundamental issue, then grab hold of it like a bulldog with a rag, refusing to let go or be distracted from it. Pro-lifers should adopt Lincoln’s strategy and hold fast to it.

             Almost all the arguments abortion advocates advance are rhetorical variations of Three-Card Monte. The aim is to draw your attention away from where the action really is. Though they have a full set of tools of distraction, there is a primary argument, usually accompanied by three smaller ones. Each of these is facilitated by a consistent sleight-of-hand trick.

             The big distraction is to call abortion a woman’s “right.” This both misunderstands what a right is and misapplies it to the specific case. Under natural law theory (which is the basis of our Bill of Rights), all rights precede the existence of the state. Rights are endowed to each person by virtue of his existence – and the state has no authority over them. They are granted by God through natural law. This is a critical protection, for he who has authority to grant a right has equal authority to revoke it. This takes government entirely out of the business of dispensing and revoking rights. In fact, it makes the defense of actual rights under natural law a test of the very legitimacy of any government. Since a right is vested in a person by virtue of being a human person, the argument of a woman’s right to kill another human person is irrelevant to the point of incoherence.

             The three smaller distractions include the argument that all children should be wanted and have a comfortable life. If your answer to that problem is to kill those who are unwanted or impoverished, why not solve all poverty and hardship with an assault rifle? The answer is obvious: we don’t do that to actual persons. Current circumstances are never a completely reliable guide to future prospects, as Sen. Tim Scott (R-SC) pointedly told Treasury secretary Janet Yellen. The second distraction is the undue burden it places on an unwilling mother. If killing a person is a remedy for an undue burden, we can clear out the nursing homes and orphanages with the above-referenced assault rifle. But we don’t do that to actual persons. The third major point is that having a child would adversely impact a woman’s career prospects and options. That is an argument from interest. If we can kill people because they threaten our interests, a hitman would be a respectable part of the service economy. We don’t do that to actual people.

             All of these arguments are decimated when the focus is on the actual, vitally relevant question: the humanity of the unborn. Science and orthodox Christian theology are yoked on that question; a fetus is just an early stage in the development of a human person. If people tell me to “keep your rosaries off my ovaries,” I ask if they are among those primitive science-deniers. (They hate that!)

             The sleight of hand the left uses is to talk of principles. A generation or so ago, most honorable people worked hard to develop a set of principles, which were the pylons sunk in bedrock to build a foundation for a coherent intellectual worldview. Even when flawed or mistaken, a person’s actions and arguments were mainly in service to his foundational principles.

             Modern leftists have appetites. Their actions, arguments and principles are all malleable things in service to their capriciously arbitrary appetites. This is how, a month ago, the left argued that no one (except perhaps a biologist) could begin to define what a woman is and now argue that only those undefinable beings have any say about abortion.  Don’t get lost in the weeds with them. Demand that they answer the fundamental question.

             Neither be shaken by nor waste time with the bitter-enders, those to whom abortion advocacy is a cosmic crusade rather than a rational decision. Even without the dissolution of coherent and consistent principles, there would be a cohort to whom abortion is the animating issue, which gives their life meaning. So it was with the great debate over slavery 170 years ago.

             Take another page from Lincoln. Without ever falling into raw hatred of his most vitriolic foes, he addressed himself primarily to those in the great middle – those who were not directly affected by slavery but felt vaguely uncomfortable with it. Most of them genuinely wanted to do what was right but were not quite sure what that was. It was to the angels of their better nature that he appealed. Staying focused on the fundamental humanity of the enslaved, Lincoln used logic and evidence to persuade those who were uncertain into his camp.

             Focusing on the fundamental humanity of the unborn child will not settle the issue with those who are vested in abortion advocacy. Rather it is a battle plan, which, adhered to rigorously, will make them into an ever diminishing and disreputable remnant.

             If the Supreme Court overturns Roe v. Wade, as now seems likely, it will be a big step in the right direction. But it is a beginning, not an end. Pro-lifers’ work is not done until our culture once again fully acknowledges the human dignity and irrevocable right to life of every person, no matter what his stage of development. Keep focused, and many of us may live to see the day when every innocent person is valued and protected.