Science versus Ideology – A matter of life and death

In the current iteration of its 2018-2022 strategic plan, the United States Department of Health and Human Services defines life as beginning at conception. The draft of the strategic plan reads:

“HHS accomplishes its mission through programs and initiatives that cover a wide spectrum of activities, serving and protecting Americans at every stage of life, beginning at conception…”

The current plan, drafted during the Obama administration, makes no reference to the sanctity of human life or a specific timeframe of when life begins. However, science has conclusively shown for some time now that life begins at conception (also known as fertilization).

Planned Parenthood and NARAL hate this language because naturally, it would hinder their profits. Liberal activists are claiming Trump will use this new idea as a way to somehow attack contraception, abortion, and IVF. Even further, some have atrociously criticized Objective 3.3 for saying HHS will “Protect women and their unborn children from harm.”

You may be surprised to know that at one time, even Democrats accepted that life begins at conception. In 1994, the Federal advisory board appointed by former President Bill Clinton affirmed that “The preimplantation human embryo warrants serious moral consideration as a developing form of human life.” [SOURCE]: National Institutes of Health, Report of the Human Embryo Research Panel (Sept. 1994), p. 2.

Unfortunately, present-day Democrats seem to have conveniently forgotten this fact. But that doesn’t change that it is a fact, one which medical professionals have reiterated time and again for years.

A 2014 research brief on the scientific view of when life begins, published by the Charlotte Lozier Institute stated:

“Human embryos from the one-cell (zygote) stage forward show uniquely integrated, organismal behavior that is unlike the behavior of mere human cells.  The zygote produces increasingly complex tissues, structures and organs that work together in a coordinated way.  Importantly, the cells, tissues and organs produced during development do not somehow “generate” the embryo (as if there were some unseen, mysterious “manufacturer” directing this process), they are produced by the embryo as it directs its own development to more mature stages of human life.  This organized, coordinated behavior of the embryo is the defining characteristic of a human organism.”

The research brief concluded in no uncertain terms:

“The conclusion that human life begins at sperm-egg fusion is uncontested, objective, based on the universally accepted scientific method of distinguishing different cell types from each other and on ample scientific evidence (thousands of independent, peer-reviewed publications). Moreover, it is entirely independent of any specific ethical, moral, political, or religious view of human life or of human embryos.”

The research brief makes an excellent point, demonstrating that the debate concerning when life begins is not a scientific one, but is instead usually a political debate.

A study published in March of this year by the American College of Pediatricians stated:

“The predominance of human biological research confirms that human life begins at conception—fertilization.  At fertilization, the human being emerges as a whole, genetically distinct, individuated zygotic living human organism, a member of the species Homo sapiens, needing only the proper environment in order to grow and develop. The difference between the individual in its adult stage and in its zygotic stage is one of form, not nature.”

The study further noted that in 1965, the American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology attempted to redefine conception to mean implantation as opposed to the previous understanding that it becomes a life at the point of fertilization.

In reality, there is no scientific debate whatsoever about whether or not life begins at conception (fertilization).  A recent study published by Marta N. Shahbazi and colleagues from the UK demonstrates that an embryo, or the fertilized egg, is an autonomous living being at the point of conception. It is even programmed for survival.

You can call it whatever you wish – a zygote, a clump of cells, an embryo, a fetus, a fertilized egg, or a product of conception – but no amount of renaming can change the scientific fact that it is a human life. It should go without saying that every human has value no matter the stage or circumstances. The draft by the Department of Health and Human Services to publicly acknowledge this scientific fact is one that should be supported and applauded.

Josh Denton is a contributing writer for Family Policy Institute of Washington.

It All Begins At Home

During the 1850’s Frederick Douglass had a series of conversations with white slave owners about how slavery would affect generations to come.

It was during one of these dialogues that he penned the words, “It is easier to build strong children than to repair broken men.”  One could also offer this corollary, “It is easier to build strong children than to repair a broken society.”

Even though they were penned well over 150 years ago, these words still ring true today. As we mourn a broken society made up of broken men, we should turn our eyes to take the long view. To repair our nation, we should focus our efforts on our homes and the institutions that directly impact our children.  Raising the next generation of strong children is the best way to repair our broken society.

In fact, you could safely assume that this now famous quote is Biblically-based. Proverbs 22:6 says something strikingly similar: “Train up a child in the way he should go; even when he is old he will not depart from it.”

The Bible gives parents a process on how to properly instill Biblical values in their children. Deuteronomy 6:5-9 says:

“You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might. And these words that I command you today shall be on your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise. You shall bind them as a sign on your hand, and they shall be as frontlets between your eyes. You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.”

Scripture commands us to “build strong children” and to raise them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord. In the above passage, parents are commanded to keep God’s law always on their hearts and to instruct their children in the teachings of the Bible. God first commands that parents should discuss Scripture at home with their children. This is because the primary education of every child starts in the home. Whether intentionally or unconsciously, all parents teach their children by example, and the home environment lays the foundation for every child’s development.

God wants parents to be deliberate with their time and conscious of their example and make sure that their children are raised with a proper understanding of God’s Word. In ancient Israel, the primary mode of transportation was walking; much time was spent traveling from one place to another. Today’s equivalent would be when you are driving somewhere with your family. The Bible teaches that parents should make use of the time to discuss the teachings of Scripture.

Finally, God teaches that parents should teach their children about the things of God “when you lie down, and when you rise.” Simply put, God says to set aside a time each morning to take a bit and read the Bible to your children. Additionally, God says to take some time as you prepare for bed or assist your children with their bedtime preparations to think of the precepts and principles of Scripture.

Teaching your children about Scripture will take discipline, but the Bible promises that even a rebellious child cannot outrun or forget the principles instilled by faithful parents.

And strong children grow to be healthy men and women, leading a healthy and strong society.

Josh Denton is a contributing writer for Family Policy Institute of Washington.

Planned Parenthood Wins Suit Allowing the Targeting of the Disabled for Abortion

When news surfaced of the near-total eradication of people with Down’s Syndrome from the Icelandic population, decent people of every persuasion were repulsed.

Most Americans, though, are probably unaware that in March 2016 Planned Parenthood sued to allow the same practice here in America. On Monday, Planned Parenthood won the case as federal judge and Obama appointee Tanya Pratt struck down an Indiana bill which would have prevented the targeting of disabled preborn babies for abortion as well as the practice of sex-selective abortion.

The legislation, signed by then-Gov. Mike Pence, made it illegal to “allow a fetus to be aborted solely because of the fetus’s race, color, national origin, ancestry, sex, or diagnosis or potential diagnosis of the fetus having Down syndrome or any other disability.”

Christie Gillespie, president and CEO of Planned Parenthood of Indiana and Kentucky, celebrated the court victory in an official statement: “[This bill] is just another example of politicians coming between physicians and patients… Every person deserves the right to make their own personal decisions about abortion.”

Given the context, Gillespie is explicitly stating that every person deserves the right to have an abortion for the sole reason that the baby is a girl or has a disability. It’s unreasonable to categorize such a statement as anything other than eugenics.

Eugenics was popularized in the late 19th and early 20th century and was mainstreamed into American society by Margaret Sanger, Lothrop Stoddard, and the rest of Planned Parenthood’s founders. The name “Planned Parenthood” is actually a rebranding of what was the Birth Control League. But as Nazi atrocities became public knowledge, birth control became synonymous with eugenics and Nazism, prompting Sanger and her team to rename the organization Planned Parenthood in 1942. Unsurprisingly, the organization carries on its founders’ agenda today.

The disabled aren’t Planned Parenthood’s only target. In 2015 Live Action discovered that Planned Parenthood accepts donations for the sole purpose of aborting black babies when they recorded phone calls of Planned Parenthood doing exactly that.

During one call, the donor said, “The less black kids out there, the better.” To which the Planned Parenthood employee responded, “Understandable, understandable.” In another, a Planned Parenthood employee in Oklahoma stated, “You sure can donate specifically to the abortion of a black baby.”

79 percent of Planned Parenthood clinics are in minority communities. In the documentary Maafa21: Black Genocide in 21st century America, Alveda King, niece of Martin Luther King Jr., spoke about this issue: “We need to remember that over 60 years ago, a man who could today be called the father of modern eugenics proposed that population control clinics be concentrated in minority neighborhoods. And now today, the vast majority of Planned Parenthood clinics are located in our neighborhoods. Are we really so naïve to believe that this all just a coincidence?”

The abortion lobby is comprised of numerous interest groups, most of whom are nefarious in nature. Satanists are even getting involved in the fight to keep abortion legal. But the eugenicists still comprise a large subset of the abortion industry, and they just got a big win in court.


James Silberman is a guest contributor to the FPIW Blog. He is a pro-life activist from Gig Harbor, WA, and a student at Whitworth University.


 

Seattle Storm Will Hold “Planned Parenthood Night” Tomorrow

When the Seattle Storm take on the Connecticut Sun tomorrow night at Key Arena, basketball won’t be the only activity on the agenda.

The Storm have declared tomorrow’s game “Planned Parenthood Night.” A rally in support of the notorious abortion corporation will be held before the game, and the basketball team will also donate $5 from the sale of each ticket and the proceeds from a silent auction to Planned Parenthood.

Auction items will include autographed and game-worn gear. In total, Planned Parenthood will likely bring in over $100,000 from the night’s events.

The rally begins at 5:15 p.m. The game, which will be nationally televised on ESPN2, will tipoff at 6:00 p.m.

This marks the first time a professional sports franchise has officially partnered with Planned Parenthood. Any attempt on the part of a professional sports franchise to intentionally associate with the abortion corporation is significant, but the Storm have gone above and beyond in their endorsement of the nation’s abortion provider.

The Storm released a PSA last week to raise awareness for “Planned Parenthood Night.” The PSA features some of the team’s basketball players declaring, “We stand with Planned Parenthood.”

In terms of timing, this move is unsurprising. Money might soon be in short supply for Planned Parenthood if Congress is able to pass legislation to defund them. Without government aid, Planned Parenthood will need corporate financial support to stay afloat.

The fact that the Storm are willing to ally with Planned Parenthood is bad news for preborn children. In North Carolina, the NBA and NCAA effectively held the state hostage over HB 2, the common sense state law that protected the privacy rights and safety of women and children in locker rooms, showers, and bathrooms. North Carolina legislators repealed the law earlier this year to appease the NCAA and keep college sports championships in the state.

If the Storm’s partnership proves profitable, other franchises in progressive areas will likely follow suit. Ownership groups around the country are watching Seattle intently to see what kind of response the Storm get from the community and what happens to the Storm’s brand as a result of their decision to partner with the abortionists at Planned Parenthood.

This is bigger than just Seattle. Pro-life supporters need to make sure every sports franchise in America understands that funding Planned Parenthood will result in damage to both their brand and bottom line.

There will be a pro-life presence outside the arena. To make a powerful statement on behalf of preborn children, pro-life people need to get involved. Email me at j.silberman@ymail.com for more information.

If you oppose the killing of preborn children in violent and bloody fashion and you’re able to attend this protest, please make every effort to join us tomorrow afternoon.

Corporations are teaming up to bail out the abortion industry. Without a response from the pro-life community, they will likely succeed. Don’t let that happen. Be outside the arena at 5 p.m. on July 18th to protest the Storm’s support for Planned Parenthood and bring your friends and family with you.


James Silberman is a guest contributor to the FPIW Blog. He is a pro-life activist from Gig Harbor, WA, and a student at Whitworth University.


 

Is abortion constitutional? Let’s ask the founders

Is abortion constitutional? The Supreme Court concluded in Roe v. Wade (1973) that an expectant mother has a “fundamental right to abortion.” According to Supreme Court logic, this right to abortion is protected under the penumbral right of privacy supposedly guaranteed by the Bill of Rights.

To see whether the Roe decision is an accurate interpretation of constitutional rights, it is important to understand the intentions of the authors of the Constitution. Did they advocate legal abortion protected by the Constitution?

One of the most authoritative sources for learning law during the founding era was William Blackstone’s Commentaries on the Laws of England. Blackstone, a distinguished English jurist, was so well-liked by the founding fathers that he was the second most frequently cited thinker in the American political writings of the founding era. American law students studied his work so religiously that Thomas Jefferson wrote to a friend that “Blackstone is to us what the Koran is to the Muslims.”

Blackstone affirmed in his Commentaries that an individual’s right to life is an “immediate gift of God.” This right to life is legally binding “as soon as an infant is able to stir in the mother’s womb.” Per Blackstone,

“For if a woman is quick with child, and by a potion, or otherwise kills it in her womb; or if any one beat her, whereby the child dies in her body, and she is delivered of a dead child; this, though not murder, was by the ancient law homicide or manslaughter. But at present it is not looked upon in quite so atrocious a light, though it remains a very heinous misdemeanor.”

Interestingly, Blackstone also explains that fetuses “in the mother’s womb” are legally considered “to be born.” Thus, the law considered a fetus to be his or her own person, independent of the mother.

From these commentaries, the founding fathers learned that any abortion perpetrated after the stirring of an infant in the mother’s womb was a “heinous misdemeanor.”

American courts upheld this traditional common law approach in characterizing abortion as a misdemeanor. Founding father James Wilson, a signatory of the Declaration of Independence and original U.S. Supreme Court justice, taught his law students that,

“With consistency, beautiful and undeviating, human life, from its commencement to its close, is protected by the common law. In the contemplation of law, life begins when the infant is first able to stir in the womb. By the law, life is protected not only from immediate destruction, but from every degree of actual violence, and, in some cases, from every degree of danger.”

Similarly, St. George Tucker, a Madison judicial appointee and professor of law at the College of William and Mary, explained in his celebrated legal treatise on American law that it is  “a great misprision [misdemeanor]” to “kill a child in its mother’s womb.”

Laws in American states criminalized abortion from the beginning. For example, Virginia law outlawed the practice of using “potion” to “unlawfully destroy the child within her [womb].” These laws were crafted by many of the same individuals who framed the Constitution.

It is therefore inconceivable that the framers intended constitutional protections for abortion as a “fundamental right.” Indeed, the framers believed the opposite. From their perspective, the unborn child has a fundamental right to life, a right that would be infringed by an abortion that ends his or her life.

A “fundamental right to abortion” does not exist in the Constitution or its amendments. It is the height of intellectual dishonesty to argue that the authors of the Constitution and its amendments intended to protect abortion under some vague and unwritten “right to privacy.” That so many courts and judges have for so long upheld a legal doctrine antagonistic to the Constitution reveals the rogue nature of the modern judiciary.


Blaine Conzatti is a columnist and research fellow at the Family Policy Institute of Washington. He can be reached at Blaine@FPIW.org.


 

The Charlie Gard Story is the Fruit of a Terrible, Progressive Tree

Charlie Gard is a British baby who has a genetic illness that is probably terminal. He has been on life support, but the British doctors wanted to remove life support.

Not wanting to give up hope, Charlie’s parents raised over a million dollars to bring their child to the US for an experimental treatment that might save his life, though likely wouldn’t prevent him from being disabled.

But the hospital refused to release him to his parents so they could try.

The parents sued, but the courts agreed with the hospital that it was time for Charlie to die.

If you’re a parent, this probably makes you angry.

If you’re human, it should make you angry.

But this is more than an isolated, sad story about a sick baby.

This outcome is what progressives have been fighting so hard for. Even if they didn’t know it.

This isn’t merely parents and doctors with a difference of opinion.  It isn’t parents refusing to accept the inevitable.  It’s the state seizing custody from parents in order to hasten the death of a baby because they believe its in the child’s best interest to die.  It’s the state denying parents the opportunity to try, slim as the chance may be.

When you take the position that human life has value only to the extent it helps other humans, this is what you get.

When the power to make life and death decisions about health care is taken away from families and given to government, this is what you get.

When you are convinced that government is better at determining what is good for a child than the parents, this is what you get.

You get laws that give a mother the right to kill her child but prohibit her from trying to keep him alive.

Is everyone left-of-center happy that Charlie Gard has been taken from his parents so the state can facilitate his death?  Certainly not.  But if  you don’t like the fruit, stop watering the tree.

This is Europe.

This is progressivism.

Don’t let it happen here.

 

Why We Cannot Stop Fighting for Life

Western society has truly become a “culture of death.” Three recent news stories illustrate this unfortunate development:

 

1. Charlie Gard is a ten-month-old with a rare genetic disorder that has put him in a coma. An American doctor offered the family a potentially life-saving experimental treatment for Charlie, and the family soon raised over $1.6 million to cover the expenses.

Charlie’s story took a turn for the worse when his London hospital refused to permit his parents to take him across the Atlantic for treatment. His doctors believed that since he would likely be disabled if the treatment were successful, “it is in Charlie’s best interests to permit Charlie to die with dignity,” a sentiment echoed by a British judge after Charlie’s parents sued.

According to the judge, “Although the parents have parental responsibility [in making medical decisions for their children], overriding control is vested in the court exercising its independent and objective judgment in the child’s best interests.”

Charlie’s parents fought valiantly for the right to secure potentially life-saving treatment for their child, appealing the decision to the Supreme Court and the European Court of Human Rights. Justice was denied, however, when the ECHR refused to intervene earlier this week, allowing doctors to end Charlie’s life.

 

2. The parents of an Iowa boy (“Z.P.”) born with cerebral palsy successfully sued their doctor for failing to inform them that their baby would be born with the disability. They say they would have had their baby aborted if they had known about the disability.

Iowa’s Supreme Court ruled in favor of the parents. As James Silberman accurately notes, “If the right to kill unborn children exists, it follows that a doctor’s failure to inform the parents of an unborn child about the presence of an undesirable trait would indeed be a violation of that right.”

 

3. The Oregon Senate passed a bill (SB494) earlier this month that would have allowed nursing homes to starve disabled patients to death. The bill was introduced after Bill Harris sued the nursing home caring for his wife, Nora, who suffers from dementia. Harris wanted the nursing home to stop spoon feeding Nora.

Although Nora is dealing with advanced Alzheimer’s, she is still conscious and wants to eat. SB494 would have allowed the nursing home to withhold food and water from Nora until she starved to death.

Thankfully, the legislation recently failed in the House Judiciary Committee. Although the mere fact that the bill passed the Senate is remarkable and frightening, it is unsurprising, considering that Oregon was the first state to allow doctors to kill terminally ill patients who want to die.

 

Why We Must Keep Fighting 

Human life is sacred. Every person, regardless of his or her disabilities or circumstances, has dignity and is inherently valuable.

Human life is beautiful. Anyone who has met the inspiring and beautiful people living with disabilities knows this to be true.

Those with disabilities offer so much to the world; most importantly, they provide the opportunity for society to grow in its compassion for the weak and vulnerable.

Those who have disabilities are no less human than you or me. Their humanity demands the same natural rights we all share, the most important of which is the right to live.

We have not been given the authority to decide whose lives are “worth living.” Abortion, euthanasia, and suicide are so destructive because these things demean human life.

Our shared humanity enjoins us to fight against these evils. We must defend the defenseless. We must speak for Charlie, Nora, and “Z.P.” We must not permit judges and legislators to change and manipulate our laws to allow for the murder of the innocent.

Who will defend the most vulnerable if we do not? I pray that we may never forget that their lives are immeasurably valuable, and I pray that more good people rise up to restrain the evil that has convinced far too many people that some lives are more valuable than others.

Tu ne cede malis, sed contra audentior ito (Latin: Do not give in to evil but proceed ever more boldly against it).


Blaine Conzatti is a columnist and research fellow at the Family Policy Institute of Washington. He can be reached at Blaine@FPIW.org.


 

Planned Parenthood and the Media Should Stop Lying About CMP Videos

Come mid-July, it will have been two years since the Center for Medical Progress (CMP) released their first in a series of undercover videos depicting conversations with high-level abortion industry executives. By giving the nation a peek behind the closed doors of the abortion industry, David Daleiden and his team at CMP have shifted the public discussion about abortion. Their undercover footage reached millions of people, many of whom were open to being swayed on the abortion issue, by giving them the opportunity to observe the depravity of the abortion industry for the first time.

For those who watched the tapes of Planned Parenthood and other abortion industry executives bartering over human body parts and speaking of crushing human skulls, there is little doubt that what the tapes show is evil.

With such damning video evidence showing their executives engaged in illegal behavior and nonchalantly talking about the horrors of abortion, Planned Parenthood knew it had to mount a defense. They couldn’t argue that bartering for human body parts wasn’t wrong and they couldn’t argue that the footage wasn’t real. They were left with only one excuse: they accused CMP of deceptive editing, a claim that has since been proven to be categorically false.

Two studies were done to determine the authenticity of the footage. One of the studies was commissioned by Planned Parenthood and conducted by Fusion GPS. The other was carried out by Coalfire Systems and commissioned by Alliance Defending Freedom.

Fusion GPS is an opposition research firm that has been used for partisan purposes by Democrats on multiple occasions, most notably when they produced a wholly unsubstantiated dossier accusing President Trump of performing unseemly acts with Russian prostitutes. Coalfire Systems, on the other hand, is a highly respected forensic firm servicing Fortune 500 companies and analyzing evidence in civil and criminal investigations.

While there is certainly a credibility gap between these two organizations, both firms definitively concluded that there was no evidence of audio or video manipulation.

The Fusion GPS study found that although there were cuts in the footage, there was no signs of edits or manipulation that would alter the meaning of the dialogue “[Our] analysis did not reveal widespread evidence of substantive video manipulation,” the report says.

Fusion GPS researchers cleared CMP of two specific accusations of audio manipulation made by Planned Parenthood and their allies. Roughly one hour and twenty minutes into CMP’s fourth video, a Planned Parenthood nurse off-camera proclaims, “It’s a baby,” while picking through the remains of a dismembered child. Planned Parenthood claimed that the interaction was suspicious, insinuating that their nurse did not actually say what the video depicted her saying. But Fusion GPS researchers explicitly refuted this claim in their report: “Neither internal nor expert analysis found any artifacts of editing in or around this segment that would suggest the audio was inserted or manipulated using technical tools.”

Similarly, Planned Parenthood accused CMP of manipulating the footage audio to portray a nurse as saying, “It’s a boy!” as she discovered the gender of the dead child. Yet their own commissioned analysis categorically rejected their claim: “Again, neither internal nor external analysis found evidence that CMP inserted or manipulated this dialog post hoc. [Our forensic expert] found the audio spectrum to be consistent and continuous before, during, and after this dialog.”

The Coalfire report was even more unequivocal in its conclusion that the videos had not been altered in any way that would mislead the viewer. They ascertained that the footage is “authentic and show no evidence of manipulation or editing.”  Additionally, while there were cuts in the footage, the edits were only of time spent “commuting, waiting, adjusting recording equipment, meals, and [for] restroom breaks.”

It is extraordinarily rare that two forensic studies, commissioned by political opponents and dealing with such a politicized issue, would come to the same conclusion. In addition, CMP released the full and unedited footage of all their encounters to show that their videos were not deceptively edited. It should have been a slam-dunk victory for the Center for Medical Progress. Why then do so many people still believe Planned Parenthood’s utterly falsified claims?

Planned Parenthood is not fighting this battle alone. Below are articles from prominent “mainstream” publications following the forensic studies which, as we just went over, were nearly unequivocal in their rebuke of Planned Parenthood’s claims of “deceptive editing”:

“Planned Parenthood videos were altered, analysis finds” -The New York Times

“How Planned Parenthood hoax avoids the Truth” -CNN

“Republicans Look to Punish Planned Parenthood Without Any Evidence” -Washington Post

“Planned Parenthood videos: Deceptive edits found by report” -Politico

“Why the undercover Planned Parenthood Videos Aren’t Journalism” -Columbia Journal Review

“Planned Parenthood to House, Senate leaders: Videos manipulated” -The Hill

“Planned Parenthood takes us inside the anti-abortion video editing shop” -LA Times

“Planned Parenthood Says Experts Found Misleading Edits In Videos” -NPR

Although the headlines are misleading, the articles from which they are pulled are even worse. Media reports like these have been so astoundingly inaccurate that purposeful dishonesty with the intent of protecting Planned Parenthood is the only reasonable explanation.

For all intents and purposes, these “news” organizations are public relations firms providing pro-bono service to Planned Parenthood and the abortion industry. The shameless lying displayed by mainstream news seems to surpass that of Planned Parenthood’s own press releases. Even the usually reliable CNN host Jake Tapper cast aside his integrity to carry water for the nation’s largest abortion provider.

There is exactly zero justification for Planned Parenthood’s baseless accusations that the videos were misleadingly altered. Planned Parenthood’s own commissioned study discredits their claims. Anyone claiming otherwise is an intentional liar or a useful idiot.

Without social and alternative media, the truth about CMP’s videos would likely have been hidden from the American public. The information gatekeepers of traditional media have a small range of tolerable thought on the abortion issue, and they are willing to do what it takes to suppress the pro-life movement’s efforts to disseminate the truth about the abortion industry.


James Silberman is a guest contributor to the FPIW Blog. He is a pro-life activist from Gig Harbor, WA, and a student at Whitworth University.


 

Culture of Death: Parents Successfully Sue Doctor For Wrongful Birth

Iowa’s Supreme Court recently ruled that the parents of a disabled child can sue their doctor for failing to warn them of the boy’s disability. Had Jeremy and Pamela Plowman known that their child, referred to as “Z.P.” in the lawsuit, had cerebral palsy, they say they would have had him aborted prior to birth.

Iowa is the 24th state to allow “wrongful birth” lawsuits through court decisions and the 25th overall. This decision is a logical extension of landmark abortion cases like Roe v. Wade (1973) and Casey v. Planned Parenthood (1992), which established that parents have the right to kill their children in the womb for any reason. If the right to kill unborn children exists, it follows that a doctor’s failure to inform the parents of an unborn child about the presence of an undesirable trait would indeed be a violation of that right.

This case reminds us that we find ourselves in a culture of death. This is the culture created by the abortion industry, along with help from Supreme Court decisions written by Justices Harry Blackmun (of Roe) and Anthony Kennedy (of Casey).

Short of overturning Roe and Casey, there isn’t much we can do in the legal realm. However, this case provides an opportunity for the pro-life movement to gain ground in the culture.

It’s difficult for most people to relate to the victims of abortion, in part because we can’t remember our lives in the womb. That’s why it’s so important for those engaged in pro-life apologetics to share the stories of those who have survived botched abortions.

There’s a reason that the abortion industry, abortion lobby, abortion supporters, and mainstream media pretend that survivors of abortion like Gianna Jessen and Melissa Ohden don’t exist. There’s a reason they react maliciously when we show images of children killed by abortionists. They do this because their culture of death can be perpetuated only if the victims of abortion remain faceless.

I don’t know Z.P. I don’t even know his full name. But I know that he is a human being with inherent worth and that it would have been an act of violence to kill him.

Thankfully, Z.P.’s disability was not recognized prior to his birth. Let’s hope the Plowmans eventually come to understand the beauty and value of their son.


James Silberman is a guest contributor to the FPIW Blog. He is a pro-life activist from Gig Harbor, WA, and a student at Whitworth University.


 

Oregon Legislation Would Allow Nursing Homes to Starve Dementia Patients

Nora Harris, 64, is in an advanced stage of Alzheimer’s. Although she is conscious, she can no longer use utensils to eat and drink.

Under current Oregon state law, so long as Nora is conscious, her caretakers must offer her food and water and help her to eat and drink.

Bill Harris, Nora’s husband, believes that Nora would rather starve to death. He sued to stop the spoon-feeding last year but lost the case.

Oregon lawmakers are now considering legislation that would allow nursing homes and hospitals to starve and dehydrate patients like Nora.

Oregon Right to Life says SB494, which passed the Senate last week, “would allow the starving and dehydrating of patients who suffer from dementia or mental illness.” David Kilada, Oregon Right to Life’s political director, explained the legislation in a post on ORTL’s blog:

“SB 494 removes current safeguards which prohibit surrogates from withholding ordinary food and water from conscious patients with conditions that don’t allow them to make decisions about their own care. Currently, patients like Nora are given help with eating and drinking when they cannot do it themselves. This is not tube feeding or an IV—this is basic, non-medical care for conscious patients.

“The way these safeguards are removed is subtle. A cursory look at SB 494 might lead you to think it merely updates the law regarding advance directive. This is true, but there’s more. If the bill passes, it could allow a court to interpret a request on an advance directive to refuse tube feeding to also mean you don’t want to receive spoon feeding! SB 494 would also create a committee, appointed rather than elected, that can make future changes to the advance directive without approval from the Oregon Legislature. This could easily result in further erosion of patient rights.”

The patients who would be affected by SB494 aren’t comatose. They aren’t relying on ventilators, tube feeding, or an IV to stay alive. Instead, these patients are fully conscious and aware; they are simply unable to feed themselves.

Current Oregon administrative rules require that nursing homes offer their patients three meals and snacks each day. The facilities must also provide “assistance with eating (e.g., supervision of eating, cueing, or the use of special utensils).”

Patients can refuse to eat the food they are given, but Nora still expresses a desire to eat. SB494 would allow Nora’s nursing home to withhold food and water from her, even if she wants to eat and drink.

With its passage in the Senate, SB494 now moves to the House of Representatives. Oregon was the first state to legalize physician-assisted suicide in 1997 for terminally ill patients. Since then, a total of 1,127 patients have died from doctors giving them prescription medication to end their lives, according to a 2017 report by the Oregon Public Health Division.