Archive for the ‘Women and Health’ Category
January 22, 2013, marks the 40th anniversary of the legislation that legalized abortion: Roe v. Wade. The organization called NARAL marks the anniversary with a campaign called “Blog For Choice.” NARAL is an acronym whose meaning has evolved over the years from “National Association for the Repeal of Abortion Laws” to “National Abortion Rights Action League” and finally, “National Abortion and Reproductive Rights Action League.” Apparently they have had identity issues over the years, similar to Planned Parenthood and their very recent change from use the term “pro-choice” to catchy little phrases such as “Reproductive Justice,” “Only you know what it’s like to walk in your shoes’ and “Decisions about reproductive health are personal. You can help keep them that way.”
Back on December 19, 2012, I put an image on my FB that read “It’s weird to see a president who has no problem with abortions in the third trimester stand against violence towards children.” This was in response to the shootings at the Sandy Hook Elementary school, in Connecticut.
Since that time, I have had several discussions with various people about abortion. I have asked people who identify themselves with the “pro-choice” moniker to explain what that means. Unanimously, everyone I have spoken to has said that if a woman should be able to “choose” to “terminate” a pregnancy. A consistent comment among many was, ”I wouldn’t do it, but I don’t think I should take away the “right” of a woman to “control” her body.”
Some people undoubtedly ask, “Well, what if it is from rape or incest? Should a woman have to have it around as a constant reminder of that act of violence?”
I countered with since when is a baby an “it”? How does one justify an act of murder to counter an act of violence? Does the unborn ever have a “choice” in how they are conceived?
I still cannot come to grips with the fact that so many think it is okay to murder a baby nor how this murder is a somehow seen as “choice” or “reproductive justice.”
In office as the President of the United States of America is the single most pro-abortion president that this country has ever had. For those who question this, I will remind them that Barack Obama has consistently opposed bans on late term abortions, partial birth abortions and has voted against providing care to babies born alive after botched abortions. That last one is particularly disturbing to me. How could a man, who professes to be a good father, no less, vote against giving care to a baby who survived an attempt to murder him or her through a botched abortion. It smacks of evil.
I will never think of the “pro-choice” supporters as anything other than “pro-abortion.” I do not even have to ask them what they mean when they say “choice” because it is very clear that they mean women should have the opportunity to take the life of the unborn at will, whenever they “choose.”
To join other pro-life folks in this movement, check out the Facebook Page called Ask Them What They Mean By “Choice” Day 2013.
For more on Barack Obama’s record and views on abortion, this page gives a pretty good summary of his pro-abortion stance: http://www.thepoliticalguide.com/Profiles/President/US/Barack_Obama/Views/Abortion/
“President George W. Bush signed the federal version of the Born Alive Infant Protection Act in 2002. The federal bill passed the U.S. House in an overwhelming 380-15 vote, with a majority of outspokenly pro-abortion representatives supporting the legislation. Even after NARAL withdrew its opposition to the federal version of the bill, Obama had continued to oppose the state version.”
The Born Alive Infant Protection Act was passed on the Federal level in 2002. This act provides protection to a baby who survived a failed abortion. When Barack Obama was an Illinois State Senator he voted against similar legislation three times. He was the only verbal opponent of the bill.
The fact that Obama voted against this legislation, on the state level, three times is one big reason why I knew this man would NEVER be anyone I could support in any leadership position. If someone can vote against saving a baby multiple times, that tells me that this is someone who cares nothing for the weakest in our society. This is not a “clump of cells” or a “fetus,” as the pro-abortion folks like to say, it is a child, a tiny helpless child who happened to survive the very process that was “chosen” to kill him or her.
I thank Jill Stanek, who was a nurse at Christ Hospital, in Oak Lawn, Illinois, for being brave enough to expose how babies who were born alive during abortions were left to die in a utility room. I find it hard to wrap my mind around the fact that the very hospital where I delivered all three of my children allowed something so heinous to occur, possibly in a utility closet not far from where I was recovering from childbirth.
I wish the mainstream media would pick up this story, but I think Rush Limbaugh was correct when he said, “We talked about it during the 2008 campaign. Nobody wanted to hear it. The hopey-change thing was just too big of a theme.”
I do not often agree with Rush Limbaugh, or Newt Gingrich, who has also been outspoken on this topic, but on this subject, I agree 100%. If nothing else, it should give all Americans cause to stop and really think about the kind of person they want as President. I want someone who cares about everyone, from the smallest to the oldest.
The quote above is from the article at http://www.lifesitenews.com/news/rush-obamas-infanticide-vote-most-shocking-underreported-significant-story
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances.
On January 20, 2011, the Obama Administration announced it will force all insurance plans to provide coverage for abortifacients, contraceptives, sterilization, and abortions, including those plans provided by religious organizations vehemently opposed to those very things. Thinking back to my eighth grade history lessons and study of the Constitution, does not the First Amendment guarantee everyone to religious freedom? Why, then, does this administration continue to trample this right?
Leaving the abortion issue aside – we all have our own views on that issue – the First Amendment gives every American religious freedom, which also gives us the right to exercise our conscience as it pertains to our religious beliefs. A caregiver, an employer, an employee or whatever your position is, should not have to go against his or her religious beliefs to satisfy the government’s decree that abortion, contraceptive and sterilization procedures and products must be covered by a faith based organization’s insurance provider. How is that religious freedom? If I choose to work for a company because I know their policies are in line with my faith, why does the government get to overrule this? Is not our government supposed to stay out of religion?
When I went to Mass this morning, our priest brought up the subject in his sermon. He gave quite a lengthy discourse on the very subject, reiterating the same points I made above. I could hear many in our congregation gasping at what they were hearing. I was stunned by the numbers of parishioners who did not know anything about this. Some did not feel that it was appropriate for our priest to discuss this from the pulpit. I think he was definitely right to do so – this legislation is completely against the Catholic faith. Where better to bring it to discussion than from the pulpit?
After Mass ended, I did speak to a few of my fellow parishioners, expressing my gratitude that our priest spoke of this matter to the congregation. They admitted that they had not heard of this mandate prior to our priest discussing it on the pulpit. That is not a surprise to me, as our media certainly lacks sharing this kind of news. I hope the folks I spoke to left church today to pass on this information to people they know AND to contact their representatives to express their dismay at this news.
A religious organization should be able to freely practice their faith in the United States. The President should not be forcing them to do otherwise. People who accept employment at a faith based organization, and most assuredly a Catholic one, know they are going to be working for a religious establishment that has moral stipulations. If someone wants an employer based insurance plan to cover birth control, abortifacients, sterilizations and abortions, then they need to choose a different employer. In the meantime, this aspect of Obamacare needs to be revisited and the President, along with his administration, needs to quite trampling the First Amendment!
For other articles on this topic, visit:
“As we mark the 39th anniversary of Roe v. Wade, we must remember that this Supreme Court decision not only protects a woman’s health and reproductive freedom, but also affirms a broader principle: that government should not intrude on private family matters. I remain committed to protecting a woman’s right to choose and this fundamental constitutional right. While this is a sensitive and often divisive issue—no matter what our views, we must stay united in our determination to prevent unintended pregnancies, support pregnant woman and mothers, reduce the need for abortion, encourage healthy relationships, and promote adoption. And as we remember this historic anniversary, we must also continue our efforts to ensure that our daughters have the same rights, freedoms, and opportunities as our sons to fulfill their dreams.”
~Barack Obama, as posted Jan. 22, 2012, on his blog at http://www.barackobama.com/news/entry/on-the-39th-anniversary-of-roe-v-wade
Two points jumped out at me when reading this statement:
- The government should not intrude on private family matters.
- Somehow legalized abortions give women the same rights, freedoms and opportunities as men to achieve their dreams.
I read this statement and wondered how this ruling affirms that the government should not intrude on private family matters. In many states, a female under the age of 18 can get an abortion without a parent being aware that she is having a serious medical procedure. In my own state, my underage children cannot get a vaccination without my consent, but my daughter could get an abortion without my knowledge. Is this not intruding on private family matters while also taking away my parental rights?
The government intrudes on the medical care options we have available, from forcing medical insurance on families to deciding what expenses are covered. If you are a patient insured by Medicaid or Medicare, the government decides which medications and procedures are approved for the poorest and oldest in our society, taking medical choices out of the hands of families and their doctors. Universities commonly force students to pay for health insurance, which often automatically cover abortions, even if the students to not want or need that type of coverage. Is this not intruding on private family matters and personal choice?
The government also wants to mandate what our children eat at school and what they eat at home – with many schools making it mandatory that children eat food provided by the schools, paid for by the parents – unless the families are eligible for free lunches. While it is admirable that Michelle Obama wants our children to be fit and healthy, even as she eats junk food and her husband smokes cigarettes, should not parents have the final say on what their own children eat? Is this not intruding, once again, on family matters?
I read this statement and would like to know how legalized abortion ensures that our daughters will “have the same rights, freedoms, and opportunities as our sons to fulfill their dreams.” Our daughters and sons already have the same opportunities to achieve their dreams. Abortion does not somehow make this achievement more accessible to the females in our society than it does to the males.
Legalized abortion does not give women more access to education and careers. There are already other laws in place to ensure that our daughters have the same access to schools and jobs. Parents and families also play a role in determining that all of their children can achieve their dreams, no matter their sex.
Legalized abortion does not afford women who choose to be mothers, along with those who choose not to be mothers, any more benefits than those received by men who are parents or men who are not parents. The President’s statement seems to indicate that abortion somehow gives women equality to men when in fact it does nothing of the sort. Roe v. Wade was born out of the misguided notion by the Supreme Court that a right to privacy extends to a woman’s decision to have an abortion, but that it must also be balanced against the state’s reasons for regulating the procedure: protecting prenatal life and protecting a woman’s health.
I do applaud the part of President Obama’s statement that states we must support pregnant women and mothers, along with prevention of unintended pregnancies. He is right when he stated that we should promote adoption and encourage healthy relationships. We can do these things without promoting the killing of the unborn, who the weakest in our society and do not have a voice. We can also do these things without compromising the rights, freedoms and opportunities for all of our children, no matter their sex.
On this day, in 1973, abortion was made legal in the United States. Since that time millions of unborn babies have been killed. While some may call this “choice,” I call this tragedy. Today, in remembrance of this anniversary, I am sharing the words of others, words of life. To me, life is the only choice.
“He who denies that human life begins with conception does not need to contend with religion, but science. To deny this certainty of biology is not to express a lack of faith, but a lack of basic knowledge of human genetics, something that is even known by the general public.”
~Ecuadorian Federation of Societies of Gynecology and Obstetrics, April 17, 2008
“America you are beautiful . . . and blessed . . . . The ultimate test of your greatness is the way you treat every human being, but especially the weakest and most defenseless. If you want equal justice for all and true freedom and lasting peace, then America, defend life.”
~Pope John Paul II
“It is a poverty that a “child must die”, So that you may live as you wish. . .
“Simple morality dictates that unless and until someone can prove the unborn human is not alive, we must give it the benefit of the doubt and assume it is (alive). And, thus, it should be entitled to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.”
~Ronald Reagan 1982
“There are two victims in every abortion: a dead baby and a dead conscience.”
“I feel the greatest destroyer of peace today is “Abortion”, because it is a war against the child… A direct killing of the innocent child, “Murder” by the mother herself… And if we can accept that a mother can kill even her own child, how can we tell other people not to kill one another? How do we persuade a woman not to have an abortion? As always, we must persuade her with love… And we remeind ourselves that love means to be willing to give until it hurts. . .”
“We must not be surprised when we hear of murders, killings, of wars, or of hatred…If a mother can kill her own child, what is left but for us to kill each other?”
“If we accept that a mother can kill even her own child, how can we tell other people to not kill each other? Any country that accepts abortion is not teaching its people to love, but to use any violence to get what they want.”
Last month, I posted the above quote from Mother Teresa on my Facebook. This led to a fairly lively discussion about what it means to be pro-life and pro-choice (pro-abortion). Some referred to a baby as an “embryo” or a “fetus.” Others believe life begins at conception. I believe a developing baby is always a baby, a life to be cherished.
I believe the choice should be made BEFORE getting pregnant and that if a woman is not ready to have a baby or does not want a baby, then she should prevent a pregnancy from happening in the first place.
This prompted discussion about what to do in cases of rape, incest or when the mother’s life is in jeopardy. I do not think adding the killing of the unborn is a way to deal with a pregnancy resulting from rape or incest. As far as aborting when the life of the mother is in jeopardy, I also believe this is wrong (and I have been in that situation personally).
Some might say that pro-lifer’s are trying to legislate “morality” by making abortion illegal. I say if you really look at our laws, we already legislate morality:
- it is a crime to murder someone;
- it is a crime to steal another’s belongings;
- it is a crime (in some instances) to be dishonest;
- it is a crime to use and sell illegal drugs; and
- it is a crime to abuse your dog.
How is legislating abortion any different? Why do some view it as different? We, as a society, accept that murder and theft are wrong. We, as a society, accept that abusing a dog or cat, or peddling drugs for a few bucks is wrong. Why do we allow the most defenseless human beings to be snuffed out because of some misguided notion that it is a “choice” women should have over their bodies.
I maintain that pro-choice equals pro-abortion. The only one with the “choice” is the mother; the unborn has no choice, no voice. I do not think it is ever right to kill the unborn. I will not be one of those who say, “I won’t have an abortion, but I don’t want to tell anyone else what to do or to take that option from them.” Unequivocally, abortion is wrong. To be pro-choice is to be pro-abortion. The only acceptable “choice” is life.
If you want to accuse me of wanting to legislate morality, then feel free. I will always choose life.
Read more about the “Ask them what they mean by ‘Choice’?” campaign on Jill Stanek’s blog here: http://www.jillstanek.com/2012/01/sunday-ask-them-what-they-mean-by-choice-day/
I originally wrote a version of the following piece in my journal following the delivery of my oldest son. Today, I celebrate the 23rd anniversary of his birth. I reflect on what I wrote all those years ago and realize that many of my concerns were very real and worked themselves out in their own way and in their own time. I look at my oldest son, along with his two brothers, and I feel confident in writing that my husband and I did quite an amazing job of parenting our sons. We have gone from being mom and dad to three little boys, to being parents of three young men who have the world at their feet. We are truly blessed.
Everyone tells you what the labor and delivery will be like. Mothers on playgrounds share their horror stories and their pain. Some newly delivered mothers at the obstetrician’s office tell you, while holding their six week old babies, to get the epidural; others tell you the drugs are bad for the baby. Everywhere a pregnant woman goes, experienced mothers seem to be on a mission to give her the nitty gritty on the physical aspects of having a baby. They tell her how long their labors were; they tally the stitches they received. The experienced mothers discuss ill fitting nursing bras, stretch marks and burping babies. As important as all of these things are, most mothers do not share the most important aspect of having your first baby. No one truly prepares you for the emotional impact of holding your firstborn child for the very first time.
From the moment I first held my son, I knew I loved him. I was in love with him. I was amazed that he was in my arms and no longer wiggling around inside my belly. I counted his fingers and toes; I caressed his tiny ears and nose. I inspected his little face, waiting for his sleepy eyes to open. I was so happy; I was flying on a post-birth high. I felt invincible. I was now a mother. Now what? As I kissed the top of his little misshapen head, bruised from the difficult delivery, it occurred to me that I am “it.” I am the one responsible for this other tiny life. What on earth was I thinking nine months ago?
My mother always said that having children is not something you just do. She said being a mother is someone you become. As I held that little bundle for the very first time, it occurred to me that I was going to become part of a special group of women. Because of this six pound, thirteen ounce, squirming bundle, I was on my way to becoming a mother. Although I had all the right “gear” for the baby at home, I was not convinced that having diapers, a crib, newborn clothes and a few noisy rattles were going to help me become a mother. Sure, I knew I could feed this child. I knew I could change his diapers and bathe him. But how would I do the really important things?
As I cradled my son against my breast, I had no idea how I would teach this little guy how to live! The tremendous job of raising this child consumed me. How could I protect him from the scrapes and bruises of life? What if he chokes on a grape? What about the inevitable bullies at school? How would I protect him from the frightening claps of thunder during a summer storm? So many thoughts and nightmares swirled in my head. What would I do if he has the same eye problems his dad has? What if his foot does not turn back the right way? Would he be able to walk properly? What if he is allergic to my old faithful dog? Am I crazy? How did my mom cope with this? How on earth did she do this six times?
This is the precise moment I realized my own mom was most likely afraid during a raging storm. It is also the moment I realized that as a child, I did not see that she was probably afraid when the lightning flashed and the thunder shook our house. I always saw her as a strong, brave woman. I knew I could always trust her to keep me safe. Somehow, she was always there to make everything all right. Would my own son look at me the same way? Would he blindly trust me to protect him always? How could I let him trust me when I was so afraid and unsure?
As I continued holding my son, something inside told me it was going to be all right. I had made it through the labor and the delivery (with lots of help from an epidural). I survived all the physical pain. Although no one had told me what to expect when I held and kissed my firstborn child for the very first time, I realized no one really could. This was one part of life I would have to experience and discover on my own. As I kissed my son for the second time, I just knew somehow I would become a good mother. After all, I had my own mother show me how to do it in just the right way. I just wish someone would have warned me that the first kiss is harder to handle than the delivery.
But because we live in an age of science,
we have a preoccupation with corroborating our myths.
In the November 2011 issue of Ladies Home Journal, tucked a few pages after recipes for Sticky Buns, smart phone apps to give you dietary willpower and information on diabetes, there is an article called, “The Best Birth Control You’re Not Using.” The article is about IUDs (intrauterine devices). It is on page 146 for those who get the printed issue. Even though I am past the point of having more babies, articles about women’s health do draw my attention.
As a longtime reader of Ladies Home Journal, I feel the magazine did not give complete information in the article.
The article has a list of several “myths,” including one “myth” which states “IUDs cause abortions because they prevent fertilized eggs from implanting in the uterine wall.” This myth is supposedly “dispelled” by discussing how IUDs alter the uterine wall to “discourage” implantation and that they also work by preventing sperm and egg from meeting. The article then states: “Plus, even if fertilization did happen to occur, a fertilized egg can’t be aborted.” This last statement is supported by a Raquel D. Arias, M.D, who said, “The medical definition of pregnancy is implantation, not fertilization.”
I think these comments are disingenuous. Life occurs at fertilization, also known as conception. Conception is when the sperm fertilizes the egg. If the fertilized egg cannot implant, then it is aborted. The US Department of Health, Education and Welfare defines abortion as, “All the measures which impair the viability of the zygote at any time between the instant of fertilization and the completing of labor constitute, in the strict sense procedures for inducing abortion.” An IUD is an abortifacient.
Ladies Home Journal should have made this distinction in this article. Many women rely on publications such as this for accurate information. The magazine was remiss in writing a skewed version of the facts. Their manner of dispelling “myths” is obviously a bit different from mine!
I did take the time to send my opinion to Sally Lee, the Editorial Director. Time will tell if there is a response.
~ Msgr. Ignacio Barreiro-Carámbula, HLI Interim President, Human Life International e-Column, September 24, 2010
Tomorrow, January 22, 2011, marks the 38th anniversary of Roe v. Wade, the Supreme Court decision which made abortion legal in the United States. Once again, I write about this topic. It is neither a “fundamental right” nor is it really a “choice”….especially for the unborn.
Jill Stanek, who once practiced nursing in the Labor and Delivery Department at Christ Hospital, in Oak Lawn, Illinois, is committed to stopping abortion. Incidentally, all three of my sons were born at that same hospital.
Jill maintains a fantastic blog at http://www.jillstanek.com. Her post this morning is all about Pro-life America rising up to put those who support “Choice” on notice for what that really means. I applaud, and support, Jill’s efforts.
See more about this campaign on Jill’s blog here: http://www.jillstanek.com/2011/01/announcing-the-ask-them-what-they-mean-when-they-say-choice-blog-day-january-21/