Two VERY Different Responses to Hurricane Harvey

hurricane-harvey-rescue-3-ap-jt-170827_4x3_992

In the midst of the devastation and destruction of Hurricane Harvey, some inspiring stories have arisen of people putting aside their personal differences and helping each other get through this tragedy.  It has been interesting to note the difference in responses between pro-abortion activists and pro-life advocates.

On one hand, there are the pro-abortion activists. Never afraid to take advantage of a tragedy, abortion advocates are using the situation in Houston to raise money to fund abortion.  The pro-abortion group The Lilith Fund is soliciting money for women “seeking abortion but (who) cannot afford it.”  Pro-abortion writer Bayetti Flores jumped on the bandwagon and encouraged her Twitter followers to donate to a Texas abortion fund.

At the same time, the pro-life response to this tragedy has been nothing short of heroic and inspiring. Stories like that of Cathy Rude, a midwife who used an inflatable swan to float to her laboring patient and help deliver her baby, or Danielle Palmer, who donated over 1000 ounces of saved breast milk to families affected by Hurricane Harvey. These pro-lifers are leading the way in showing everyone how to respond to a natural disaster in a way that does not promote a culture of death, but in a way that encourages people that they can always choose life!

Vice-President Pence’s Commencement Address at Grove City

PenceGCC-264x160Vice President Mike Pence, a stalwart pro-lifer, recently made another stop in Pennsylvania, giving the commencement address at Grove City College.  For his full remarks click here, but of particular note was this comment: “And I can’t tell you how proud I am to be Vice President to a President who stands without apology for the sanctity of life and all the God-given liberties in the Constitution of the United States.”

The Trump Administration has given pro-lifers a renewed sense of hope after eight years of pro-abortion President Barack Obama.  Some of the administration’s pro-life accomplishments so far include:

  • Vice President Mike Pence’s speech at the 2017 March for Life in Washington DC represented the first time a sitting Vice President spoke at the March.
  • President Trump reinstated a policy that prevents organizations receiving federal foreign aid from performing abortions or promoting them.
  • President Trump nominated Judge Neil Gorsuch to the Supreme Court. He is a pro-life Justice in the mold of the late beloved Justice Antonin Scalia.
  • President Trump appointed avid pro-lifers to key cabinet positions including Kellyanne Conway as Senior Advisor, Tom Price as Secretary of Health and Human Services, Nikki Haley as UN Ambassador, and Ben Carson as Secretary of Housing and Urban Development.
  • President Trump even signed an executive order saying his administration will “provide regulatory relief for religious objectors to Obamacare’s burdensome preventive services mandate, a position supported by the Supreme Court decision in Hobby Lobby.”

These pro-life accomplishments give advocates renewed hope that we will be even more successful in changing people’s minds and reminding them that they can always choose life.

Eggs–A 2016 Summer LifeLines “sneak peek”

The Federation just wrapped up its annual pro-life student essay contest, and as always the entrants were amazing and the judges had a difficult time choosing a winner.  Since I will be on the road all this week on our town hall tour, I thought I’d share the winning essays with you as a sneak peek of what will be featured in the Summer LifeLines magazine.  This essay, written by 12th grader Miguel Mendoza, won 1st place in the senior high category. Enjoy!

Miguel Mendoza

Miguel Mendoza

Bald eagles, the enduring symbol of this nation’s spirit, freedom, and pursuit of greatness have received protection by law from those who would wish ill upon this majestic bird. In 1940, the United States passed a strict federal law known as the Bald Eagle Protection Act that focused on guarding not only the national bird, but also the bald eagle’s eggs. If one were to come across those eggs in the wild, it would be considered a serious offense to destroy them. If done so, the penalty would be equivalent to shooting an adult eagle out of the air.

Reverend Tadeusz Pacholczyk, author of The Ethics of Stem Cell Research, states, “By the force of law, we acknowledge the scientific truth that the eagle’s eggs, that is to say, the embryonic eagle inside that egg, is the same creature as the beautiful bird that we witness flying overhead.”  Consequently, this demonstrates the government’s awareness to pass laws that protect not only the adult but also the youngest individual of that species.

This can be applicable to the recent concept of stem-cell research in the field of medical science. Stem-cell research has taken on special attention for its potential health benefits and also for its moral side effects produced by the utilization of human embryos to give way to stem cells. In short, stem cells are an important way for the body’s cells to be restored. They function as unspecialized cells that have the capacity to grow into several specific types of cells, such as a cell that can produce new red blood cells.

The practice of stem-cell research appears to favor the use of embryonic stem cells since those cells have the ability to become any type of body cell. Adult stem cells are also utilized and have the potential to become numerous different cells, but not all. Some scientists hope to cure certain diseases like diabetes using embryonic stem cells.

With guidance from Church doctrine and teachings, I have come to the conclusion that I am in favor of most stem cell research, which normally uses cells from adult tissue, which presents no moral conflict. Nonetheless, a moral problem surfaces when researchers use the early stages of a fertilized egg to harvest stem cells, which ultimately destroys the once living human embryo. Although good results may arise from embryonic stem cell research, it by no means justifies the cruelty in the destruction of innocent human life.

The Church directly opposes any alterations to early human life. The Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith’s document, The Gift of Life (Donum Vitae), instructs that, “The human being is to be respected and treated as a person from the moment of conception…” I believe that life is a precious gift that we were given. Although not fully developed, human embryos are alive and therefore possess existence.  Remorsefully, their lack of mouth, eyes, and arms make them vulnerable to the evil works of man. Even though the aim of this research is to produce beneficial outcomes, the immoral means used to arrive at the sought after good does not validate the process. The life of a person should not lend itself as a dispensable commodity on behalf of someone else.

In regards to the bald eagle, people realized how its eggs were as important as the eagle itself, and therefore required protection for its conservation. The bird’s value was noticed and so it was reasonable to protect the bald eagle in all its stages of life. The same notion holds true for humans, who are more valuable than any other species on the planet combined. Unfortunately, human beings do not recognize their own inner beauty and uniqueness. They are willing to protect the embryos of other animals but fail to protect themselves first from what Reverend Pacholczyk describes as the, “dismemberment on the altar of stem cell sacrifice.”

 

 

The Splendor of Truth–A “sneak peak” at 2016 Summer LifeLines

The Federation just wrapped up its annual pro-life student essay contest, and as always the entrants were amazing and the judges had a difficult time choosing a winner.  Since I will be on the road all this week on our town hall tour, I thought I’d share the winning essays with you as a sneak peek of what will be featured in the Summer LifeLines magazine.  This essay, written by 7th grader Marie Therese Heil of Camp Hill, won 1st place in the junior high category.  Later this week, we’ll be posting the 1st place senior high winning essay. Enjoy!

Marie Therese Heil

Marie Therese Heil

The Federation just wrapped up its annual pro-life student essay contest, and as always the entrants were amazing and the judges had a difficult time choosing a winner.  Since I will be on the road all this week on our town hall tour, I thought I’d share the winning essay with you as a sneak peek of what will be featured in the Summer LifeLines magazine.  This essay, written by 7th grader Marie Therese Heil of Camp Hill, won 1st place in the junior high category.  Later this week, we’ll be posting the 1st place senior high winning essay. Enjoy!

Rhetoric plays a large role in the abortion debate.   By purposefully relying on ambiguous and oblique terminology, abortions-rights activists, who frequently prefer to be called by the more-positive sounding name of “pro-choice,” try to mask the reality of abortion.

A typical semantic obfuscation regarding abortion is the term “women’s health.”  Abortion has been linked to a number of diseases, including breast, cervical, and ovarian cancer; long-term infertility; and psychological problems, including an increased risk of suicide.  However, in Pennsylvania, of the six abortion providers found on Abortion.com, four have the term “Women’s Center” in their names (making them sound like women’s social organizations), while another has “Women’s Medical Center.”[1]  Looking at their websites, it is obvious that the main business of these clinics is providing abortions, which clearly shows that they are not concerned with overall  “women’s health.”  This linguistic fog in the naming of abortion clinics takes its lead from Planned Parenthood, the largest single provider of abortions in the United States.  If a woman were looking to Planned Parenthood for assistance in becoming a parent, she would be out of luck.   While if she wanted an abortion, she would be directed to the local Planned Parenthood “health center,” a woman who needs assistance for infertility is primarily directed to an external website.

The terms for abortions also attempt to take away the stigma of this action.  “Emergency contraception” does not only have a contraceptive effect, but it can also “prevent a newly-conceived embryo from implanting in the womb, causing an abortion.”[2]   Abortions themselves are frequently termed “procedures” or “terminations.”   As David Grimes, one of the “world’s leading abortion scholars,”[3] wrote, “According to the accepted definition of abortion, removing a fetus from the uterus after 23 or 24 weeks gestation is not an abortion.  Hence other terms should be used for these interventions.  Examples include feticide, labor induction, dilation and evacuation (D&E), hysterotomy, termination of pregnancy or combinations of these.  However, ‘abortion’ should not be used for these procedures, since the word is not applicable after viability.”[4]  The preferred words used to describe an unborn child are “embryo,” “fetus,” and “tissue,” objectifying – that is, degrading into the status of an object – a human being.

David Grimes himself wrote, “Incorrect, misleading, and inflammatory language obfuscates, rather than illuminates, the discussion around abortion. Words matter. We should all choose them carefully.”[5]  Agreed.  When the words “fetal tissue” mask the unique humanity of an unborn child and when the rhetoric of “women’s health” and “reproductive rights” hide the truths about how abortion hurts women, it is time for all of us who care about the unborn to speak a word of truth: abortion is murder.

[1]“Pennsylvania Abortion Clinics,” Abortion.com, retrieved from http://www.abortion.com/abortion_clinics_state.php?country=United%20States&state=Pennsylvania.

[2]Patrick Craine, “World’s top authority on morning after pill says women must be told it may cause abortions,” Life Site News, 22 February 2013, retrieved from https://www.lifesitenews.com/news/worlds-top-authority-on-morning-after-pill-says-women-must-be-told-it-may-c.

[3] “David A. Grimes,” The Huffington Post, retrieved from http://www.huffingtonpost.com/david-a-grimes/.

[4]David A. Grimes and Gretchen Stuart, “Abortion  jabberwocky: the need for better terminology,” Contraception: An International  Reproductive Health Journal,  February 2010, p. 93, retrieved from http://www.contraceptionjournal.org/article/S0010-7824(09)00415-6/fulltext.

[5]David A. Grimes,  “6 Things To Understand When Talking About Abortion,” The Huffington Post, 9 February 2015, retrieved from http://www.huffingtonpost.com/david-a-grimes/abortion-terminology-things-to-understand_b_6175430.html.

Whole Woman’s Health v. Hellerstedt

Supreme Court

The Supreme Court recently heard arguments in Whole Woman’s Health v. Hellerstedt.  In the first major abortion case in nearly a decade, the court will rule on the constitutionality of Texas law HB2 and determine whether commonsense reform intended to increase women’s health and safety is an undue burden on abortion facilities.  These Texas regulations came out of the trial of Philadelphia abortionist Kermit Gosnell and his “house of horrors”.  They simply require abortion facilities to have admitting privileges with a hospital within 30 miles and to meet some basic quality of care, facility cleanliness, and safety standards.

The real question is, if the big abortion lobby want abortions to be “safe” as they claim (never mind the fact an abortion is NEVER safe for the baby) why do they support clinics like Gosnell’s “house of horrors”.  According to a University of California study published in Obstetrics & Gynecology last year, complications to the mother are reported in approximately 2.1 % of the abortions that occur in the United States.  That’s despite the fact that only 27 of the 50 states require abortion facilities to report complications…and even in many of those states the reporting is lacking.  So even if we assume those numbers are correct, that means of the approximately 90 abortions that are performed just in Pennsylvania today, 2 women will have some kind of complication (not to mention all the others scarred for life mentally).  Clearly that number will only go up if states aren’t allowed to hold abortion facilities to the same standards as nail salons and tattoo parlors.  Is that really what abortion advocates want?

The question to be decided by the Supreme Court is whether or not these regulations create an “undue burden” on abortion facilities. The good news is that the Supreme Court upheld stricter requirements in 1983 saying they were important to “ensuring public health”.  Even more recently in Planned Parenthood v Casey in 1992 the court determined laws making abortion more difficult or more expensive do not necessarily create an undue burden.

With the passing of Justice Scalia, the court is currently split between 4 conservative justices and 4 liberal justices.  Justice Anthony Kennedy is generally the swing vote on abortion cases, and during arguments he appeared to be open to allowing the regulations to stand in the interest of women’s health.  It is vital we keep Justice Kennedy, and the entire court, in our prayers as they weigh the merits of this case.

March for Life Is Rally of Faith in ‘Plain, Decent, Everyday Common Rightness’

Hundreds of thousands of people braved the bitter cold last week to participate in the March for Life in Washington, D.C. on January 22. Despite the sub-zero wind chill, people from all across the country walked to restore the right to life for the preborn.

After the March, my friends and I walked to the Lincoln Memorial. I stood between those humbling columns and remembered the scenes from one of my favorite movies, “Mr. Smith Goes to Washington.”smith3

The film reaches its turning point as a no longer naive young politician sits in the shadows of the Lincoln Memorial, having just been crushed by a political machine. From D.C. to his hometown, the news media is being maneuvered against him.

He feels so small, so helpless, so foolish to have believed that the truth would prevail. He feels beaten, ready to go back to his small town. What can one man do against such corruption, such injustice?

Then a friend finds him in the shadows of the Lincoln Memorial. She reminds him that he shouldn’t place his faith in people but in “plain, decent, everyday common rightness.” She points to Abraham Lincoln, a man who refused to stop fighting though the odds were stacked against him and the opposition was severe. He had faith that “rightness” would win.

“All the good in this world came from fools with faith like that,” she tells the young Mr. Smith.

As I stood there, I felt like Mr. Lincoln and Mr. Smith. The media ignores pro-lifers or distorts the truth to make us look weak. Our opposers paint us as liars and fools.

Yet, I found hope in the memory of Mr. Lincoln. He had faith against the odds when he fought to require rights and protection for every human life.

I have faith that one day our country will protect every human being’s right to life inside the womb and out. Until then, we will continue to march, fighting for “plain, decent, everyday common rightness.”

Pa. Alternatives to Abortion Program Offers Women Another Choice

When a woman faces an unplanned pregnancy, she may believe that abortion is her only option.

Real Alternatives is there to assures her it isn’t.

Real Alternatives is Pennsylvania’s innovative alternatives to abortion program, which offers caring, confidential support to pregnant mothers and their families. Women Have a Right to Know!

Founder and CEO Kevin Bagatta spoke with the 700 Club in an interview that aired Tuesday. He said, “There were surveys done of women who’d had an abortion. And they said if one person had helped them during the crisis pregnancy, they wouldn’t have had the abortion.”

Real Alternatives centers across the Commonwealth offer that help to women in crisis. It helped Jamie, an unemployed mother who discovered she was pregnant with her fourth child right after her husband left her.

Hundreds of thousands of women like her have received support for themselves and their families at Real Alternatives centers. The state-wide program offers emotional support through counseling and physical support through various means — from temporary shelter to diapers.

To learn more, visit Real Alternatives or watch the 700 Club interview.

Some Vaccines Are Developed Using Aborted Fetal Cells

We receive many requests for information in our office. One of the more frequent questions involves vaccines containing aborted fetal cells. So, I thought it would be good to share the information about these vaccines on our blog.Picture2

A simplified explanation: Some vaccines were developed using cells taken from aborted human babies. The vaccines themselves do not contain fetal cells, but many believe there is “residual” biological matter from the babies that has been assimilated into the vaccine, according to the Right to Life of Michigan.

Some of the common vaccines that use aborted fetal cells include chickenpox, hepatitis, tetanus, polio, measles, mumps, rubella, rabies, and shingles. There are some alternative vaccines that do not use aborted fetal cells, including ones for tetanus, hepatitis B, polio, and rabies.

Find the vaccine lists and brand names here.

It is tragic how our culture devalues preborn human beings, subjecting them to scientific experimentation and death.

A Victory for Pennsylvania Taxpayers!

House Approves Abortion Opt-out Bill in Federal Health
Insurance Exchange

HARRISBURG, Pa. – The Pennsylvania House of Representatives passed House Bill 818 on Tuesday, supporting the Commonwealth’s longstanding policy of not using taxpayer dollars to fund abortions.

Unborn child2“The legislation is in line with the restriction on public funding of abortion present in Pennsylvania’s landmark Abortion Control Act. It’s a long-standing policy that works,” said Maria Gallagher, legislative director of the Pennsylvania Pro-Life Federation. “We applaud House members – Republicans and Democrats, women and men – who have followed the will of the people in passing this critical bill.”

The bill, sponsored by Rep. Donna Oberlander, R-Armstrong, would allow Pennsylvania to opt-out of abortion coverage in the state health insurance exchange, which will be created by the Affordable Care Act using public dollars. The bill includes exceptions for rape, incest, and the mother’s life.

“Unless this legislation becomes law, starting next year, Pennsylvania will be in the abortion business – dramatically and radically reversing the Keystone State’s long-standing policy against public funding of abortion,” Gallagher said.

A Quinnipiac University poll showed that more than 70 percent of Americans, including the same majority of women, oppose public funding of abortion in the federal health care plan.

So far, 21 states have passed similar legislation to opt-out of abortion funding. A provision written into the Affordable Care Act allows states to opt-out of abortion funding in health care reform.

House Bill 818 now moves to the Senate for consideration.

Now, it’s important that we let our state Senators know that we want them to support HB 818 too.  To find out who your state Senator is, or to find out contact information for your state Senator, please click here.

Please call your state Senator to let the Senator know you want a “yes” vote on HB 818 when it is voted on in the Senate.

 Please share this message with your pro-life friends and family members.

Legislature Urged to Take Swift Action to Stop Tax Funding of Abortion in Pennsylvania!

House Bill 818 simply safeguards Pennsylvania’s long-standing policy against tax funding of abortion—a policy which works, and which is supported by the vast majority of taxpayers.

Baby feetA Quinnipiac poll shows that more than 70 percent of Americans oppose public funding of abortion under the federal health care law. More specifically, in the same poll, 70 percent of American women opposed such abortion funding.

The bill is about only one thing: ensuring that Pennsylvania continues its long-standing policy against taxpayer funding of abortion. Twenty-one other states have passed similar legislation and signed it into law, and other states are expected to follow suit.

If HB 818 is not passed by the PA House and Senate and signed by the Governor, starting next year, Pennsylvania taxpayers will be paying for abortions under the health insurance exchange created by the federal health care law—radically reversing Pennsylvania’s decades-old policy against tax-funded abortions.

Call your state rep NOW and urge a yes vote on HB 818! To find out contact info for your state lawmaker, call us at 717-541-0034.