Illinois Right to Life Committee
Thursday, Apr 28, 2011 -- Protecting women from dangerous abortionists
HB 3156 would require abortion clinics to comply with the same regulations that other outpatient surgery facilities are already expected to follow. Wouldn't you expect such a bill to get strong support? Apparently not in Illinois! The bill only received 57 Yes votes (out of 60 needed for passage) in the Illinois House on April 13th, with seven state representatives voting present and 51 voting No.
Action was taken to suspend the vote so it could be repeated at a later date, but that possibility seems to have slipped away, as the bill was returned to the Rules Committee and has not been allowed back on the House floor.
Contrast that result with Kansas where a similar bill received majorities of 2/3 or better in both legislative bodies and was sent to their governor this week. Now that Kansas has a Pro-Life governor, he is expected to sign the bill. It seems that Illinois legislators have more motivation to protect abortionists than show any concern about the health and welfare of women.
Wednesday, Apr 27, 2011 -- Planned Parenthood Cares for Women?
Citing some of Planned Parenthood's own statistics on services and funding, here is the letter I sent today to the Chicago Tribune in response to a letter to the editor printed on April 26th that praised Planned Parenthood:
Megan Crepeau (Apr 4) and Joanne Jacobson (Apr 26) praise Planned Parenthood's care for women, such as "cancer screening, blood pressure screening, and other vital gynecological services."
Really? Planned Parenthood admits that they do not perform mammograms. Any other "cancer screenings" consist primarily of Pap tests. The medical services offered at Planned Parenthood are very narrow in scope. Much more comprehensive health care is available to poor women through county health departments.
Does Planned Parenthood really care about women's health? Why do they always oppose informed consent before abortion? Why do they give inaccurate information about fetal development? Why do they consistently fail to report possible sexual abuse when pregnant underage girls are brought into their offices? Why do 98% of pregnant women who enter their doors get abortions?
Anyone who advocates to help poor women does them a disservice if they refer them to Planned Parenthood, where their agenda is to sell abortion as the only solution to any pregnancy. Why should that kind of agenda be funded with tax money to the tune of $363 million annually, nearly 33% of Planned Parenthood's total revenue?
Tuesday, Apr 26, 2011 -- Babies known to be saved during 40 Days for Life still climbing
When 40 Days for life ended on April 17th, the total of babies known to be saved from abortion had reached 483, but past experience suggested that more reports would be coming in as leaders had more time to send in their local good news. This morning I checked the 40 Days for Life web site and found the total had reached 699, but by afternoon this life-affirming count had reached 703.
Across the 247 locations of 40 Days for Life taking place from March 9th through April 17th, 703 babies were known to be saved from abortion through the prayerful presence of 40 Days for Life participants. How many more babies were saved that no one learned about or that just did not get reported into the national total?
Thursday, Apr 21, 2011 -- Abortion advocates not willing to challenge fetal pain laws
As mentioned last week four states have now established laws that ban late term abortions based on the scientific knowledge that babies feel pain. When the Nebraska law was taking effect, everyone was waiting for a court challenge from abortion advocates, but it never happened. Instead, late-term abortionist LeRoy Carhart moved his late-term abortions from Omaha NE to Maryland.
With Kansas, Oklahoma, and Idaho recently joining Nebraska, the question again arises about court challenges of such laws. However, according to Politico, while opponents of the new laws argue that they defy the standard set by Roe v. Wade, which allows the state to prohibit abortions based only on fetal viability, they are not willing to take this issue to court for fear of defeat.
Abortion advocates' concern comes from the Carhart v. Gonzalez ruling, which upheld the national Partial-Birth Abortion Ban Act. They have apparently decided that the same five Supreme Court justices would agree to expand the standard beyond fetal viability if given the chance.
Wednesday, Apr 20, 2011 -- New consumer product non-food sales leaders unhealthy
A relative of mine who works in the food industry recently saw a report on new food and new non-food product sales leaders for 2010. The non-food list got noticed because two of the top ten spots went to emergency contraceptive products. In third place was "Plan B One-Step" at $78.3 million and in fourth place was "Next Choice" at $78 million, among a list consisting of toothpaste, soap, mouthwash, and similar products.
At first, I wondered how "Plan B" could be considered a new product since it has been available since 2006, but I discovered that changing it from a Levonorgestrel 0.75mg (2 tablets) product to a one 1.5mg tablet product called "Plan B One Step" constitutes a new product. The other new product just entered the market as a competitor of Plan B. "Next Choice" from Watson Pharma, Inc. uses the original format consisting of 2 tablets of Levonorgestrel 0.75mg.
The fine print for both of these products indicate they are "up to 89% effective at preventing pregnancy" when used as instructed. The "up to 89%" is apparently not often achieved in the real world. No correlation can be found between use of this single active steroid ingredient and reduction in pregnancy or abortion rates in general populations having significant access to this dangerous drug.
It is certainly unfortunate that these dangerous emergency contraception products are generating such large sales to place them near the top of a list of sales leaders among new non-food products. The fine print for these products also indicates that they are to be used only rarely for true birth control failure emergencies, but studies have shown that young women especially may use these products as a primary means of birth control, substantially increasing the health risks to themselves.
Tuesday, Apr 19, 2011 -- Pro-Life billboard called "very offensive" to funeral attendees
A call was received today from a person who saw a Pro-Life billboard near a funeral chapel where she was grieving the loss of her grandfather. This billboard was created by IRLC and looks like:
This billboard has been placed on a wall of a Knights of Columbus building at 11207 S. Ewing on the southeast side of Chicago. The funeral chapel is right next door. The Knights graciously put up this billboard a number of years ago, and even had to replace it once after it was damaged by vandals.
I have not previously received any complaints about the billboard in the context of funeral attendees, so this complaint came as a surprise. I tried to respond based on an underlying expectation that showing respect for the dead is connected to the same principles that drive Pro-Life efforts, but I was not able to express myself effectively at that time. I now have some thoughts to share after further reflection.
While a funeral helps relatives grieve their loss, they are also showing respect for the person who died, in recognition of the realm of eternal life that person has entered. This action is consistent with defending the right to life of preborn children because of their God-given dignity and destiny for eternal life.
Reflecting on the meaning of life that a death in the family should invoke would seem to encourage a Pro-Life perspective about life. Certainly the person who died now knows the value of life, or by holding onto a "pro-choice" position, may be heading for a very unpleasant eternity. Suggesting that abortion is a bad choice for women is certainly consistent with that reality.
Will the message of this billboard help some "pro-choice" funeral attendees gain some new insights, as they consider the meaning and value of life while they reflect on their relative who died? Hopefully so! Pray for today's "pro-choice" caller and her family that they will be moved to recognize the value of human life from coneption to natural death.
Monday, Apr 18, 2011 -- Sex education leaves young children "uneducable"
Not only does "comprehensive" sex education encourage young children into casual sex and generate more money for Planned Parenthood, it also leads to the "dumming down" of the population based on the assessment of childhood sexual development expert Melvin Anchell, M.D.
Anchell stated, "The scholastic problems in todays schools cannot be corrected by spending more money for buildings, equipment and teachers. They can only be corrected by removing the sex education interferences that make students uneducable."
How does this situation occur? Anchell explains, "In the 6- to 12-year-old child, direct sexual feelings become quiescent. Because of this dormancy for direct sexual energies, latency is a time in life when the individual normally experiences the greatest tranquility. The dormant sexual energies in the child do not disappear during latency, but are redirected by the mind and are used to serve other purposes. For example, during latency, some redirected sexual energy is used for acquiring knowledge. This is why the 6- to 12-year-old child is most educable."
In 1985 Anchell noted, "Scholastic tests done on todays sexually educated 6- to 12-year-olds, indeed, show that these students have accomplished less scholastically than pre-sex-education students." How much worse is the situation in 2011?
Thursday, Apr 14, 2011 -- Abortion bans based on fetal pain approved in 3 more states
Nebraska was the first state to ban abortion after 20 weeks based on the scientific evidence that the baby can feel pain. Now three more states have joined Nebraska in enacting similar laws. In close timing, Kansas, Oklahoma, and Idaho have established such laws this year.
Indications so far suggest that these laws will not be challenged in court so they are expected to take effect later this year. The Nebraska law resulted in notorious abortionist LeRoy Carhart taking his late-term abortions to Maryland. As more states pass similar laws there will be fewer and fewer locations available for such abortionists to commit these gruesome abortions.
Wednesday, Apr 13, 2011 -- Msgr. Philip Reilly inspires vigils at abortion facilities
After an inspiring explanation of the purpose of being present at abortion facilities during his homily at Old St. Patrick's, Msgr. Philip Reilly led about 150 people to pray in front of Family Planning Associates at 659 W. Washington in Chicago last Saturday. The Crusaders for Life "flash mob" provided participants with yellow LIFE balloons to display a powerful visual image for this very spiritual mission.
Fr. Reilly explained that our presence is needed to pray for the victims of abortion, both the baby and the mother, as well as for the abortion providers. Our presence may be the only witness to the value of the baby's life to take place in this life. We are in solidarity with these victims, as were those who were present when Jesus died on the cross.
This prayerful presence is a message of love for all involved in the tragic mistake of abortion. Msgr. Reilly provided many additional details that truly conveyed the importance of taking the time for regular vigils at abortion facilities. Get details on available opportunities here.
Tuesday, Apr 12, 2011 -- Federal budget deal cuts some abortion funding
With the text of the agreed-upon continuing resolution for Fiscal 2011 now available, cuts in budget items that fund pro-abortion organizations were found. Funding for the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) was cut from $55 million to $40 million. The finalized provisions also include cutting international population control and family planning funding down to $575 million from the $648 million Congress authorized in 2010.
The finalized CR also cuts Title X domestic family planning funding, the pool of money from which Planned Parenthood is funded. The cuts reduce the program from $317 million to $300 million. Pray that much deeper cuts will be achieved in the budget for fiscal 2012.
Monday, Apr 11, 2011 -- Federal budget deal nets mixed results
When news that a compromise agreement for a continuing resolution had been reached to fund the Federal government through September 30th, the questions began about what was given away to reach this agreement. It was made clear immediately that provisions to deny funding to Planned Parenthood were not included.
On the other hand, the Dornan Amendment that had prevented government funding of abortions in Washington, D.C. for 15 years, until it was removed in 2010, has been restored. The Senate has also agreed to vote on defunding Planned Parenthood and another vote to defund ObamaCare. Those votes will put senators on record on these key issues.
Other details may not be learned until the actual wording of the compromise is released this week. It does appear this agreement clears the way to work on the 2012 budget, where the effort to defund Planned Parenthood and other abortion providers can begin anew.
Friday, Apr 8, 2011 -- Censoring Pro-Life messages from billboards
Maybe CBS actually stands for "Censoring Bureau Supreme." The CBS Outdoor billboard company has demonstrated blatant censorship in New Jersey by rejecting two Pro-Life billboards that have already been used around the nation, as well as previously in New Jersey under a contract with Clear Channel.
That statement reveals the complete hypocrisy of abortion advocates. On the one hand, they deny that abortion has any mental impact on women, but they reject a billboard with a baby picture "that might be unduly disturbing to young women who may have made the kinds of choices that the displays deal with." The billboard message states, Abortion: A Womans Right to Choose vs. A Babys Right to Live. We can help. Call 800-848-LOVE
Thursday, Apr 7, 2011 -- Pro-Life bills on the move in the Illinois Legislature
There is a breath of life in Springfield. Three Pro-Life bills are actually moving forward in the Illinois Legislature. All three have been approved in committee, and one has already been passed in the House. HB 2093 passed the House on a 110-0 vote today. This bill amends the Abused and Neglected Child Reporting Act to extend the list of abortion facility personnel required to report child abuse or neglect. Call your State Senator to ask for their YES vote on HB 2093.
If you need to confirm who to contact, Find your Districts & Legislators by selecting "By Zip+4" and entering your 9-digit zip code.
HB 786 creates the Ultrasound Opportunity Act. This bill provides that a facility that performs abortions may not perform an abortion on a woman without first offering her an opportunity to receive and view an active ultrasound of her unborn child. HB 786 was introduced by Rep. Brandon Phelps and is now on the House floor. Click HERE to send an email or a fax to your State Representative regarding HB 786. Be sure ask for support of the Phelps amended version of the bill. Also call your State Representaive to ask for a YES vote on HB 786.
HB 2321 would amend the Ambulatory Surgical Treatment Center Act to provides that notwithstanding any other statute, rule, or regulation to the contrary, an ambulatory surgical treatment center where abortions are performed must comply with all of the statutes, rules, and regulations applicable to ambulatory surgical treatment centers generally. The original HB 2321 was modified with Amendment 1 introduced by Rep. Darlene Senger and is now on the House floor. Call your Illinois Representative to ask for their support of the Senger amended version of HB 2321.
Wednesday, Apr 6, 2011 -- More violence and threats against Pro-Life activists
The abortion advocates who protested outside at the April 2nd celebration of Joe Scheidler's tremendous impact on Pro-Life activism did more than display foul language and poor manners. When my wife and I left this great event and returned to the hotel parking lot, we learned that some cars had air let out of their tires. We considered ourselves fortunate not to be victims.
Now a posting on the Chicago Independent Media Center website reveals the following: On the night of April 2nd, shortly after the pro choice demo against Joe Scheidler, another attack from pro-choice militants was carried out against him and his followers. Three cars of pro-life activists had their tires slashed.
Another statement later in this same web posting suggests plans to continue violent action against Pro-Life activists, and appears to take credit for the attack on the Scheidler home that occurred a few months ago. Pray that such violent individuals will be arrested and prosecuted.
Tuesday, Apr 5, 2011 -- Illinois pharmacists win conscience rights in court decision
Two pharmacy owners, Luke VanderBleek and Glenn Kosirog, have been defending their rights of conscience in court since former Governor Blagojevich established a regulation forcing all pharmacists to dispence the abortifacient morning-after pill. The legal case is known as Morr-Fitz, Inc. v. Blagojevich.
Judge John W. Belz of the circuit court sitting in Springfield IL issued his decision today. Judge Belz declared that this regulation violates the states Health Care Right of Conscience Act, the Illinois Religious Freedom Restoration Act, and the Free Exercise of Religion Clause of the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution.
Unfortunately, this decision is not expected to be the end of the battle for these brave pharmacists. The case is expected to be appealed so a final decision may still be years away. Pray that a just final decision will be delivered as quickly as possible.
Monday, Apr 4, 2011 -- Joe Scheidler's impact on Pro-Life efforts given recognition
On April 2nd over 400 Pro-Life activists (and 23 abortion advocates standing outside protesting) recognized the impact that Joe Scheidler has had in shaping and expanding the Pro-Life movement, not only in the USA, but even internationally.
Joe's ability and willingness to help others increase their involvement in the Pro-Life cause has made a tremendous impact, as testified to by many speakers recognizing and thanking him for his help and counsel (including me). The evening was very inspiring for both Joe and everyone in attendance. See the short video that was played.
Outside before entering, Joe was welcomed by a large group of cheering young people with yellow helium-filled balloons with the message "Life" written on them. Joe then stopped by that small group of pro-abortion protestors to seek converts.
Friday, Apr 1, 2011 -- Answers to questions about abortion
IRLC received questions about abortion from a high school student in Vermont. I provided answers to those thought-provoking questions as recorded here.