September 20, 2006
Kidnapping Parents Didn't Approve of Baby's Black Father
We now learn that the Maine parents who kidnapped their daughter to take her to New York for an abortion are racists. They flew off the handle when they learned that not only was their unborn grandchild's father in jail, but he's *gasp* black. Heavin forbid you have a mulatto grandchild.
"Race May Be a Motive in Abortion Kidnap Case"
September 18, 2006
Daughter Snatched by Parents to Have Abortion
I know two people who won't win the Parent of the Year award:
Police charged a Maine couple on Monday of kidnapping their pregnant 19-year-old daughter, who was bound with rope and duct tape and bundled into her parents' car to force her to have an emergency abortion.
The parents didn't approve of the unborn child's father who is in jail. These goons (not parents) freaked out that their daughter wasn't as perfect as they wanted her to be. So what better way to solve the problem then to kill the grandchild. I'm confident the daughter won't be asking them to babysit.
"Parents Kidnap Daughter to Have Abortion"
UPDATE: Parents Behaving Badly, a fitting weblog, caught wind of this story.
UPDATE II: What's with attacking pregnant women in Maine?
The man wanted in connection with the assault of a pregnant woman in Hancock turned himself in Wednesday morning.
Is there some bad lobster going around over there?
September 03, 2006
Embryos Killed in Possible Stem Cell Breakthrough
Recent news that scientists found a way to get stem cells from human embryos without killing them isn't quite so true:
Dr. Lanza noted in his article that the cell removed in this test, known as preimplantation genetic diagnosis, or P.G.D., could be used, after growing and dividing, both for testing and, with his new technique, to derive human embryonic stem cells. Since the original embryo would be unharmed, a principal objection to the research would be removed, he said.
Wesley J. Smith writes that the NY Times has been dishonest about ACT research:
It is, in fact, not known whether one cell taken from an 8-10 cell embryo could be used to derive an ES cell line. Other researchers have already tried to do it with two cells and failed, for example. At most, it would be accurate to state that scientists "hope" it could be done or "theorize" it could be done. To say assertively that "other researchers could use this technique" is bad science, and to let that assertion hang in the air as if it is a given, was negligent journalism.
*SIGH* More human deaths in the name of scientific progress. I pray we have the wisdom to find a way to reap tremendous medical advances while not making a deal with the devil. A way will be found if merely for the interests of scientists who want to feed off the federal government's tit.
"Clarification Issued on Stem Cell Work"
August 19, 2006
Birthed from Terri's Fight
Last month, Michael Schiavo, the man who won the right to starve his wife to death, flew to Connecticut to endorse Ned Lamont. Schiavo has started TerriPAC to go after "politicians who tried to stop Ms. Schiavo’s death." Terri's parents, Robert and Mary Schindler, have started their own Terri Schindler Schiavo Foundation Center for Health Care Ethics. Michael Schiavo has done fairly well with a near-broke PAC that's raised more than $26,000 solely from the internet. But the Schindler's organization's $379,855 head start means they have a better chance at shaping the debate on how best to treat the severely disabled.
"Husband Takes Schiavo Fight Back to Politicians"
August 03, 2006
Plan B Discussed on The View
Elisabeth Hasselbeck, she's so cute and she believes human life begins at conception. Here's a discussion on Plan B from The View where the pro-abortion-on-demand opinion was dominant. Hey, it is the entertainment business.
She's also the only reason to ever watch a season of Survior.
"Elisabeth Hasselbeck 'Loses Her Mind' (Video)"
July 13, 2006
UK Banning Sex-Selection Abortions
Sex-selection abortions will soon be banned in Britain:
At least there's some limit to when an abortion can occur. Too bad James Joyner's tongue-in-cheek scenerio is all too realistic.
"Choosing Baby's Sex to be Outlawed"
June 08, 2006
An Abortion Fanatic at Kos Convention
The Culture of Death lives, breathes, and thrives inside the world of the Kossites. At a pundit training workshop at the Yearly Kos convention going on in Las Vegas Bryon York noted a Kossite obsessed with abortion:
Another blogger wanted to talk about abortion. “I’ve been in the abortion business for 30 years,” she said as she walked toward the interview chair, adding that she owned a string of abortion clinics around the country.
The audience appluaded.
The Clintonian mantra of making abortions safe, legal, and rare wasn't present. But then this is a group who thinks an embryo is just an unviable tissue mass. To the woman pundit-wannabe abortion was a business. More abortion meant more business for her. The Culture of Death plus economic insentive equals inhumanity.
"You Wanna Be a Pundit?"
June 01, 2006
Stem Cell Legislation
Kevin Binversie has a great interview with State Rep. Steve Kestell about stem cell research and his bill that would ban human cloning. The most important item to take away is his bill wouldn't damage any potential stem cell industry:
4.) Would AB 499 have still allowed Wisconsin to become, as Governor Jim Doyle claims, ‘a stem cell leader?’ Or are Doyle’s concerns merited?
I take the slightly sideways position of being opposed to human cloning for research but don't oppose it for reproduction. Human embryoes should be allowed to come to term not be microscoptic stem cell factories.
"Kestell on AB 499 and Stem Cells"
April 06, 2006
Human-Hating Professor to Meet with FBI
Who's the bozo who sicced the FBI on Erik Pianka? The guy hates Man, but there's no evidence he's planning a bio-terrorist attack. He's just an enviro-nut who deserves public derision instead of threats and government pestering.
April 05, 2006
Human-hating scientist Eric Pianka is getting death threats since it was reported he thought is would be pretty swell if Ebola wiped out 90% of Mankind. Death threats toward a man who has written is own obituary is pretty pointless along with being extremely uncivil.
When someone is caught saying things they don't want the whole world to see they pull out their out-of-context card:
However, Eric Pianka says his remarks about his beliefs were taken out of context, that he was just raising a warning that deadly disease epidemics are a threat if population growth isn't contained.
He should have kept the video camera filming when he was giving his speech.
The whole thing is making the poor professor discumbobulated:
"What we really need to do is start thinking about controlling our population before it's too late," he said Monday. "It's already too late, but we're not even thinking about it. We're just mindlessly rushing ahead breeding our brains out."
I'd feel sorry for him if I didn't know he would prefer me and 90% of the rest of Man dead.
April 03, 2006
One Wacky Scientist
The University of Texas pays a reptile and amphibian scientist who thinks it would be peachy-keen if Ebola were to wipe out 90% of all humans. See, Dr. Eric R. Pianka doesn't particuarly like what humans are doing to the planet. He doesn't think Man is special. Thinking that way is anthropocentrism. On one of his web pages he asks, "What good are lizards? Indeed, what good are you?" During a presentation to the Texas Academy of Science he declared, "We're no better than bacteria!" I'm waiting for that great novel written by some streptococcus.
Pianka hast stepped into David Hume's is-ought problem. It's what separates objectively examining the world from advocating what should be done. It's what allows economist Stephen Levitt to discover legal abortion had an effect on crime rates while not taking a stance on abortion. There's a difference between understanding how the world works and deciding what course or policy should be taken.
The Texas Academy of Science didn't have a problem with Pinka's views. They gave him a standing ovation and an award. How nice and anti-human of them.
Reason's Ronald Bailey writes,
Professor Pianka is apparently a brilliant herpetologist, but like brilliant Stanford University entomologist Paul Ehrlich who wrote The Population Bomb nearly 40 years ago, he is completely ignorant of economics and demography. Pianka might start alleviating his ignorance by reading some of the analyses by Jesse Ausubel, head of the Human Environment Program at Rockefeller University. Relying on human creativity and wealth creation, Ausubel foresees the 21st century as the beginning of the Great Restoration of the natural environment.
Then Andrew Sullivan decides to lump Pianka with anyone who believes in the end of the world. He's not very humble. He seems to think the end times aren't near and will discount anyone who thinks otherwise. Not very humble of him. I don't know when the world will end. It could be tomorrow or centuries from now.
"Meeting Doctor Doom"
February 10, 2006
Killer Mom Gets 2 1/2 Years in Jail
What a downer:
A woman whose newborn daughter died after a home birth into a toilet has been sentenced to two and a half years in prison.
Should we be shocked? It's legal to kill a child in the womb. It's legal to partially give birth to a child and then kill him. So it's not a surprise this
January 23, 2006
March for Life Coverage
Cold and rain are making things uncomfortable today in Washington, DC. President Bush spoke to the marchers via telephone this afternoon. EWTN is streaming their coverage of the march live. Pro-Life Blogs is makng periodic posts.
March for Life 2006
Sunday was the 33rd anniversary of Roe v. Wade, the Supreme Court decision that yanked the abortion debate away from individual states and made it the center of the culture wars. Some marches took place already. In San Francisco one woman held a sign that demanded "Bigots Go Home!" She obviously doesn't understand what a bigot is. Looking into a mirror might help. Another pro-abortion protester held a sign that read, "Keep your laws off my body... and I'll keep my hands off your throat!" That's on par with any pro-life supporter defending killers like Paul Hill.
The big rally will be Monday in Washington, D.C. Thousands will tolerate the cold to peacefully yearn for the day when all people, born and unborn, have the right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. Before the March for Life the Family Research Council will be hosting the Blogs for Life Conference.
I'll end this post with some lyrics from one of the most powerful yet gut-wrenching songs I've ever heard, "Legal Kill" by King's X.
I know your side so very well
"Demonstrators Mark Roe V. Wade Anniversary"
"Blogs4Life/March for Life"
"Certain Unalienable Rights"
January 18, 2006
Court Rules Beaten Child is Allowed to Die
Massachusetts' Supreme Judical Court ruled the Department of Social Services could turn off the machines keeping 11-year-old Haleigh Poutre. She was allegedly beaten by Jason Strickland. The monster was trying to get custody in order to keep her alive and avoid murder charges.
"Mass. State Court Rules Battered Girl Can Die"
December 06, 2005
Keeping Haleigh "Alive"
There is a point in where a person has no life left in their body. From what I've read about poor Haleigh Poutre that's what state she's in. Reuters reports her "brain was found partly sheared when she was hospitalized on September 11." The husband of her legal guardian/aunt is accused of beating her. Jason Strickland wants Haleigh kept alive so he doesn't have to deal with a murder charge. How cynical. This is a far cry from Terri Schiavo's parents who wanted to care for her. To me Haleigh looks like she was killed a while ago. Now all that's left is a shell. It's time for justice to be served.
Amanda Marcotte at Pandragon writes,
This entire case is a nightmare, of course, but I think it's well worth watching to see how the "pro-lifers" are going to handle this. It seems like a fun house mirror version of the paranoid theories on the right that Michael Schiavo was trying to off his wife. Now that there's a genuine case with genuine evidence for murder, though, the alleged murderer is claiming to be on the side of "life".
"Court Hears "Right to Die" Case of Battered Girl"
October 18, 2005
Doing a Better Job than Me
My poor defense of an embryo deserving personhood demonstrates my inability to provide a convincing defense of my pro-life stance. Part of it is due to the emotions contained in the issue. The idea of millions of children being killed every year because they're unwanted is disturbing. If the unborn are people with the same right to life as any other human then legalized abortion on demand is a tragedy of historic proportions. Passion sometimes gets in the way of making a persuasive argument.
I've found an interesting dialogue among a pro-abortion feminist, a pro-abortion Christian, and a pro-life Christian. God is mentioned, but theological reasoning isn't the primary defense of the pro-life position. I don't expect anyone to be swayed. It's simply food-for-thought.
"Life and Abortion: A Pro-Life Defense in Dialogue Form"
October 17, 2005
Stem Cells Without Killing
Scientist may have found ways to get embryonic stem cells while not destroying human beings in the process. One technique takes a single cell from an embryo:
Taking off a blastomere from an eight-celled mouse embryo, [Robert Lanza] put the cell in a dish and let it grow. He discovered that if mouse embryonic stem cells accompanied the cell, it would create embryonic stem cells of its own.
The other technique changes the genetics of the embryo so it can implant itself to the mother's womb.
But because an embryo was created in this process, and then destroyed for its stem cells, it prompted objections.
Not quite. Many pro-lifers don't define personhood by the ability or inability to attach to the womb. Many things happen in the early stages of a pregnancy that prevent the embryo from attaching. When this naturally occurs it doesn't take away the embryo's personhood. It's just a price paid from living in a tragic, imperfect world. Pro-lifers see a person from the moment of conception, that place in time where sperm and egg united to form cell
"New Stem Cell Methods Don't Destroy Embryo"
UPDATE: As was pointed out in the comments I engaged in some sloppy thinking by mentioning cloning as producing an embryo with a "unique genetic code." By definition it does no such thing.
August 20, 2005
Morse's Odd Pro-Life Argument
The problem with Jennifer Roback Morse's arguement is she tries to make reproductive freedom a postive liberty. She writes,
The various euphemisms such as “reproductive self-determination,” and “reproductive justice,” vastly overstate what government can provide. The government cannot assure anyone that they will achieve their reproductive goals.
This is an odd way looking at the abortion issue. Since I've been politically conscious I've never seen it conveyed as dealing with reproductive goals. I think Morse is overthinking. Simply put (for a complicated, emotionaly-heated issue), abortion comes down to autonomy. Those supporting abortion rights either believe the human embryo has no rights or the woman's rights trump the embryo's. Pro-lifers believe the embryo is a human being with rights the same as any other living human. The debate is about coersion and who (or what) is being coerced. She knows there are far-reaching societal effects from the abortion question, but such passion on both sides would come from such a convoluted demand about assuring reproductive goals.
In her essay Morse also laments this feminist demand:
We now believe that we are entitled to have sex without having a live baby result.
I'm as pro-life as you can get and I have little trouble with that demand. (I always have some problems when someone claims they're "entitled" to anything, but this is Morse's word choice not feminists'.) Sex is a pleasurable activity. We have a right to seek pleasure. In and of itself, that's not a bad thing. Better, safer sex isn't necessarily a bad thing either so long as other's rights aren't violated. Thus birth control per se isn't bad. It become immoral when the method harms the unborn. Obviously I don't take the Catholic Church's stance that unnatural methods preventing pregnancy are sinful. Condoms, diaphrams, sterilization, and other birth control methods are fine with me. I draw the line at methods that prevent a fertilized egg from attatching to the uterus wall. I also oppose "morning after" drugs that are really chemical abortions.
August 10, 2005
Honored for Killing His Wife
After Teri Schiavo died I really hoped I'd never hear Michael Schiavo's name again. The Florida State Guardianship Association brought him back into the news for naming him Guardian of the Year. Try Oxymoron of the Year. Imagine being at that ceremony:
MC: Michael Schiavo, for having your wife killed, for having her dehydrated to death, for making her suffer in a way liberal Jesse Jackson felt was "immoral and unnecessary," for siding with death over life, for helping the Culture of Death take a big step toward a world where human life is no longer sacred you are named Guardian of the Year. Congratulations.
[MEMBERS OF THE AUDIENCE CRY OUT, "SPEECH! SPEECH!"]
Michael Schiavo: Thank you. Thank you all. As you know I'm not much of a speechmaker. I don't talk much. I couldn't have done this without the support of those before me that have weakened the sanctity of human life. They include Margaret Sanger, the American eugenics movement, the Hemlock Society, Dr. Jack Kevorkian, and all those Supreme Court justices who either made Roe v. Wade the law of the land or affirmed it. I know I'm forgetting many, but without you all Teri couldn't have been legally killed. On behalf of my wife, Theresa, I thank you.
I would have vomited after the first "thank you."
July 29, 2005
Blogosphere Reaction to Frist
Augustine at Redstate.org lashes out at Sen. Frist calling him a "traitor" and more:
Bill Frist is a man without principles. He does not deserve polite acceptance of his treachery by any Republican. And any party that truly believes in a culture of life does not tolerate such men in positions of leadership. It should not tolerate Dr. Frist.
In the most damaging stab at Frist Augustine compares him to Sen. Arlen Specter, no idol to conservative activists.
James Joyner agrees with me that Frist blew his chance at the Presidential nomination but writes, "If, somehow, he managed to nonetheless win the nomination, though, a more centrist position on this issue would be helpful in the fall campaign against the Democratic candidate."
As always, ScrappleFace finds a way to mock the news:
Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist today announced his support for expanding federally-funded stem cell research in hopes of finding a cure for his own addiction to tax dollars.
Frist: Harvest those Embryos
Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist now supports federal funding of embryonic stem cell research. By "growing in office" (a euphamism for a Republican becoming more liberal) Frist now conflicts with his pro-life stance. He can also kiss goodbye to his chance of becoming the GOP Presidential nominee in 2008.
"Frist Breaks With Bush on Stem-Cell Bill"
July 13, 2005
Number of Abortions Down
Abortions have hit a 30-year low in Minnesota. That fits nicely with Wisconsin's numbers which are also at 30-year lows.
A wider variety and greater access to contraceptives is obviously one reason for the decline. There are also cultural reasons that partly stem from the debate on partial-birth abortion:
Another factor, said Marquette University political science professor and Constitutional law expert Christopher Wolfe, is public debate in recent years over issues such as the so-called partial-birth abortion. Because of the debate, people in their 20s are "less in favor of broad abortion rights than middle-age people," he said.
Changing people's hearts is ultimately what will end this brutal practice. Law can only do so much. But as these numbers show the Culture of Life isn't on it's death bed.
"Minnesota Hit 30-Year Low in Abortions in '04"
June 15, 2005
Teri Schiavo's autopsy has been released. Her brain was in a terrible condition:
The autopsy released Wednesday on Terri Schiavo backed her husband's contention that she was in a persistent vegetative state, finding she was severely and irreversibly brain-damaged and blind as well. It also found no evidence that she was strangled or otherwise abused before she collapsed.
The autospy vindicates Michael Schiavo to the extent that Teri might have been in a persistent vegetative state (PVS)). Maybe, maybe not. Knowing that doesn't get us any closer to deciding if a PVS should be equated with brain death. If it is then Teri wasn't killed when her feeding tube was removed. She was dead already. Those who advocated that Teri should continued to be fed could second guess themselves and wonder if they fought for a just cause. I have no regrets. There were serious questions surrounding Teri's condition. Teri's parents talked on and on about how she could be trained to swallow. Based on the medical examiner's report that wasn't possible. That still doesn't mean it was right to let her starve (actually die of thirst). I never expected Teri's condition to ever improve.
If there was a living will I would have excepted Teri's cruel death. But since there was so much doubt I sided with caution and life. I heed the words of Fr. Frank Pavone:
Her physical injuries and disabilities never made her less of a person. No amount of brain injury ever justifies denying a person proper humane care. That includes food and water.
Barbara Lyons of Wisconsin Right to Life adds [PDF]:
While the report’s findings may be of interest to some, the fact remains that a severely disabled woman was intentionally killed and in a profoundly horrible manner. This debate was never about whether Terri was abused by her husband or what the size of her brain was. It was about whether our society believes that individuals with disabilities should be treated with care and compassion or whether they should be cast aside and even killed.
And Steven Taylor is dead on when he writes, "Of course, all of this is unlikely to sway True Believers."
"Schiavo Autopsy Shows Massive Brain Damage"
UPDATE: Kevin Aylward noticed the "sloppy reporting on the autopsy." AP reporter Mitch Stacy practically says the medical examiner proved Teri was in a PVS. If you read the report (pg. 17) you find this passage:
The persistent vegetative state and minimally conscious state, are clinical diagnoses, not pathological ones.
Thus the medical examiner can't determine after death if Teri was in a PVS.
May 12, 2005
Trying to Find Perspective...and Failing
Mike McCurry informs us about the awful fact that "Three million (yes, 3,000,000) babies could be saved within the first 24 hours of being born if they had proper sanitation, clean water, nutrition." I don't know if his numbers are correct. That's not the point. We know there are miserable parts of our world plagued by poverty. He tries to make himself high and mighty and above the political riff-raff by calling for both conservatives and liberals to stop yelling at each other and come together. Odd coming from a man who was part of a highly effective anti-GOP communications machine.
In McCurry's "cum ba ya" moment he writes, "There are some good ways to save 3 million babies and it doesn't break the bank." Monetarily, maybe. But he spouts typical knee-jerk liberal "throw money at the problem" cliches. As of 1997 the U.S. spent "nearly $1 trillion (in 1997 dollars) on foreign aid." Global poverty is more about dealing with failed political institutions. You can have all the relief aid ready at hand. A country gripped by corruption will eat huge chunks of that aid leaving little to do any good. The problem of poverty isn't the lack of goodwill by Americans--tsunami relief proved that. The problme is building stable political regimes that promote private property and the rule of law.
"D.C. Buzzes While Millions of Babies Die"
March 31, 2005
Terri Schiavo is Dead
She's gone on to a place far better than the one she left. The rest of us still on earth have to deal with the effects of how and why she died. Lord, grant us wisdom and compassion.
The Confederate Yankee writes that "Terri Shiavo's torturous starvation is over." With this rancorous debate McGehee [via OTB] found that Terri's plight brought up important, meaningful issues of human life and death. "Not bad for a 'vegetable.'" Terri didn't die in vain.
"Schiavo Dies 13 Days After Tube Removed"
UPDATE: Kevin put together a small picture retrospective.
The Supreme Court again refusing to take up Terri's case isn't surprising. Nothing has really changed to get them to get involved. I'm ticked at the 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals who gave Terri Schiavo's parents false hope. The court agreed to consider taking up the case only to issue a ruling against it 15 hours later. James Joyner calls the court's actions "incredibly cruel."
The court gave the Schindlers a glimmer of hope because Judge Stanley F. Birch Jr. wanted to scold politicians. He wrote,
In resolving the Schiavo controversy, it is my judgment that, despite sincere and altruistic motivation, the legislative and executive branches of our government have acted in a manner demonstrably at odds with our Founding Fathers' blueprint for the governance of a free people our Constitution.
Oh please! Maybe Congress and the President overstepped their constitutional bounds, and maybe they didn't. Since Judge Birch didn't feel the need to declare the late night, emergency legislation unconstitutional that question is up for grabs. As Captain Ed puts it, "Talk about judicial arrogance!" And at a grieving family's expense.
"High Court Rejects New Schiavo Request"
March 30, 2005
Better Late than Never
The Atlanta federal appeals court is thinking about allowing an emergency hearing. The one-sentence order states, "The Appellant's emergency motion for leave to file out of time is granted." Since the court shot down the Shindlers last week I think the chances of a hearing or them ordering the reinsertion of Terri Schiavo's feeding tube are slim.
"Appeals Court to Consider Schiavo Request"
March 29, 2005
Liberal Voices for Terri
Jesse Jackson has gotten involved in Terri Schiavo's case.
"She is being starved to death, she is being dehydrated to death. That's immoral and unnecessary," Jackson told reporters after meeting Schiavo's parents, Bob and Mary Schindler, near the hospice in Pinellas Park where she is being cared for.
The cynical side of me thinks Jackson jumped in because where there's a bunch of cameras there's certain to be the egomaniac himself. Where was Jackson two weeks, three weeks, two months ago? Where was he to take the heat off Christian conservatives? He must have been too busy turning Michael Jackson into the next black celebrity victim. Would Andrew Sullivan have begun his purge if Jackson would have stood side-by-side with Rep. Tom DeLay? I'll take (almost) any allies even if it's someone as vain as Jesse Jackson.
Jackson isn't the only Lefty speaking out that Terri should live. Nat Hentoff has a blistering column in the Village Voice. The atheist, pro-life liberal, an extremely rare species, excoriates the ACLU for siding with Michael Schiavo and lays blame on a court system more concerned with saving people on death row than with the severely disabled. He quotes a Ralph Nader-Wesley Smith joint statement:
If this were a death penalty case, this evidence would demand reconsideration. Yet, an innocent, disabled woman is receiving less justice. . . . This case is rife with doubt. Justice demands that Terri be permitted to live.
The statement goes also says:
The courts . . . have [also] ordered that no attempts be made to provide her water or food by mouth. Terri swallows her own saliva. Spoon feeding is not medical treatment. "This outrageous order proves that the courts are not merely permitting medical treatment to be withheld, they have ordered her to be made dead."
Professor McAdams wonders why so many liberals' knee-jerk response to Terri's plight was to let her die. Stephen Miller reminds me that Sen. Tom Harkin (D-IA) is very supportive of Terri's right to live.
"Jesse Jackson Jumps Into Florida Right-To-Die Case"
"Terri Schiavo: Judicial Murder"
[Added to OTB's Beltway Traffic Jam.]
March 27, 2005
Times Targets DeLay
Andrew Sullivan isn't the only one taking advantage of Terri Schiavo's impending death to advance an agenda. The LA Times has a hit piece supposedly demonstrating the hypocrisy of Rep. Tom DeLay. Michelle Malkin links to a few Lefty webloggers who go ape over it. There's also a certain self-proclaimed "moderate" who is using it to bash DeLay too.
"DeLay's Own Tragic Crossroads"
March 24, 2005
I don black today partly to mourn for Terri Schiavo and the Culture of Life. I also am doing it to support UW-Milwaukee. Go Panthers! Beat Illinois!
March 23, 2005
Schiavo Quick Hits
Time ticks away, and Terri moves closer to her Creator. I don't have the emotional stamina to say a lot right now. So I'll offer you these nuggets.
An 11-member federal panel refused to hold a full hearing for Terri Schiavo.
Florida Department of Children and Families might take Terri out of the hospice she's been in and reinsert her feeding tube with or without a judge's order.
Bryan Preston castigates come big-time webloggers for selectively entering the Schiavo debate.
Dale Franks talks about "unprincipled" Republicans. It's fairer to state that the Congressional Republicans who passed the special Terri Schiavo law had a conflict between two principles: federalism and the protection of human life. (Stephen Bainbridge dealt with four principles.) It wasn't that the Republicans (and conservatives like me) are unprincipled it's that they had to decide what principle was paramount.
Even though CodeBlueBlog has won some awards I'm not familar with the writer. Here's a doctor's opinion of Terri's condition. Based on CT scans he's seen on the internet "THIS IS IN NO WAY PRIMA FACIE EVIDENCE THAT TERRI SCHIAVO'S MENTAL ABILITIES OR/OR CAPABILITIES ARE COMPLETELY ERADICATED." Take it for what it's worth. [Thanks MMM for the link.]
Increased Interest in Living Wills
A benefit to the publicity of Terri Schiavo's plight is many people are asking about living wills. If Terri had one we wouldn't be having a national debate. Something about Am 1130 WISN's report doesn't seem right. According to the radio station Aurora Health Care received a 1000 visitors yesterday. That's due to the interest in living wills. That just can't be right. It just can't be true that the website of the number one healthcare provider in Eastern Wisconsin had fewer visitors than TAM. Maybe I'm selling myself short.
"Living Will--Get One"
An Atlanta appeals court decided that Terri Schiavo should die. The sense I get from the two federal court rulings is that these judges were a little ticked that Congress moved this case to federal court. The speed by which they made their decisions implies they don't want Congress to do something like this ever again. I say it implies because the constitutionality of Congress passing a bill solely for Terri Schiavo will never come to court. She'll soon be dead and the point moot.
Pray for Terri, her family--yes, even Michael Schiavo, and all of us. We've moved into a new, dangerous realm.
"Reinsertion of Schiavo Feeding Tube Denied"
UPDATE: Michelle Malkin has excerpts from a dissenting judge as well as other pundits' views.
March 22, 2005
Hewitt: Too Bad the Killer's Dead
Let me toss out another aspect of the encroaching Culture of Death: the rise in popularity of the death penalty. The Minnesota reservation shootings have brought out bloodlust in Hugh Hewitt:
I am certain I am not the first to post on this, but had yesterday's shooter in Minnesota not turned the gun on himself, he would never have been eligible for the death penalty because of the recent Supreme Court decision. He killed young people, teachers, a security guard and his grandfather, but the Supreme Court has ruled that no civilized society could even consider executing him for his massacre.
Hugh wishes the killer would have lived so he could be put on trial then killed. Hugh also must wish Minnesota had the death penalty. Thankfully, like Wisconsin, it doesn't. I think it's absurd all states haven't ended vengeful state-sanctioned killing.
Months ago, I worked on a post explaining my philosophy of life. Guess I better get around to finishing it. To be really brief regarding my opposition to the death penalty: since an adequate prison system is enough protection to society capital punishment is merely vengence.
Sowell on Schiavo
Few public intellectuals can put the complexities of Man's existence into so clear a form as Thomas Sowell. He's the best conservative thinker who simple conveys the flawed world we're stuck in.
There are no good solutions to this wrenching situation. It is the tragedy of the human condition in its most stark form.
Sowell is as uncomfortable as me about Congress having to act on Terri Schiavo's behalf. If anyone understands unintended consequences it's Sowell yet still his conscience dictates that an extraordinary case deserves extraordinary actions.
Killing Patients in Texas
KTK at Lean Left put together a good post explaining why some Texas medical cases involving a law signed by then-governor George Bush are more complicated than Bush-bashers want to make them.
"Bad Meme a-Risin’: 'Killing Patients to Save Money'"
Pinkerton Blasts Christian Conservatives
Stephen Bainbridge chastises James Pinkerton:
The American people need to be told that federalism is a tool - a means to an end. So is limited government. So, for that matter, is the rule of law. Sometimes they are the right tool. And sometimes they aren't. As I discussed yesterday, neither federalism nor limited government was the right analytical tool for evaluating Congress' intervention in the Terry Schiavo case. Explaining why is hard to do in a quick sound-bite, but I think I managed to do a pretty good job of doing so in less than 400 words -- or about half the length of a Pinkerton op-ed.
I'm not shocked at Pinkerton laying this all on the doorstep of the Religious Right. While being a very tall man my experience of reading and listening to him is that he has it in for Christian conservatives.
He's also wrong if this was all because of the Religious Right. I'm a conservative and strongly pro-life who doesn't consider myself in the same group as James Dobson. I'm more libertarian than Christian conservatives I've encountered. Much of it is because of growing up as a Lutheran in a German-American community. We don't feel the need to overtly display our faith. Our actions should suffice. I'm fighting for Terri's right to life because I worry about the advancement of a Culture of Death. What horrors will my fellow men allow because of the further cheapening of human life?
Add to this almost half the Democrats present in the House of Representatives Sunday night voted for the bill. There are Democrats, Independents, as well as Republicans who are appalled that Terri Schiavo is being starved to death. This was more bipartisan than Pinkerton wants to let on.
Vanity: Man's Vulnerability
Meghan Cox Gurdon summons the spirit of C.S. Lewis. Let's all grab a copy of The Screwtape Letters.
Judge Rules Against Terri
A federal judge in Tampa ruled that Terri Schiavo's feeding tube should not be reinserted. He determined that Terri's parents had little chance of winning their case. An appeal to a higher court in Atlanta will soon be filed. All the while the clock ticks because Terri is being denied food and water. Federal legislation to move Terri's case to federal court in no way was a guarantee she would be saved from a cruel death.
"Judge Rejects Schiavo Appeal"
March 21, 2005
"A VERY Bad Sign"
Terri Schiavo's federal court hearing worries Andy McCarthy. The judge didn't immediately order the feeding tube to be reinserted. McCarthy writes,
De novo review regardless of what went on in the state courts should mean it is a brand new ballgame – the federal court owes no deference to any of the matters raised or ruled on in the state courts. Given the voluminous nature of the record generated in Florida, there is no way this case can be decided quickly if it is to be reviewed responsibly. Terri Schiavo would be dead in the time that would take. So, manifestly, the only proper thing for the judge to do was to order the feeding tube replaced forthwith the minute the case was filed. If Terri’s parents lose their case, the tube can always be removed again. But if Terri dies while the judge is spinning his wheels, she and her parents can never be made whole.
Public Opinion Trumps No Clear Wish
It's interesting how Judge Greer used the testimony of Beverly Tyler. She told the court that when Terri made her casual remarks about using extraodinary medical procedures other Americans her age, her "reference class," felt that living on machines was cruel. As Lydia McGrew puts it, "[W]hat the deuce is Ms. Tyler's evidence doing in here at all?" Judge Greer as well as the 2nd District Court of Appeal decided that in the face of no living will and nothing more than casual remarks about extraordinary medical procedures the general opinions of other's Terri's age should determine if her feeding tube should be removed.
"The Right to Live and the Right Reference Class: Part II"
A Difficult Dilemma
SEC. 9. SENSE OF THE CONGRESS.
Such consideration would be a better use of Congress' time than possibly regulating steroids in baseball. But discussion should include the law, signed by Governor George Bush, that allowed a hospital to turn off the respirator for an almost six-month-old.
There are serious federalism issues that are involved. That's why I give only two cheers for Congress acting on behalf of Terri. Despite what the legislation states a precedent has been set. Expect other families in similar dilemmas petitioning Congress and crying hypocrisy when they don't act. Hard cases make bad law. That maxim is probably true. But as Professor Bainbridge writes, "In sum, the culture of life and the rule of law appear to be in unavoidable conflict. Both are central values of a free and just society. All of which makes it extremely difficult to decide where one stands on this issue." Just pray that we're doing the best we can.
"Terry Schiavo, Congress, and First Principles"
Biased Poll Questions
Orin Kerr examines the wording of an opinion poll on Terri Schiavo's case. Can you say leading questions?
"Biased Questions in the ABC Schiavo Poll"
Dehydrating to Death
Fraters Libertas points us to an article from The Weekly Standard describing the agony one goes through as they are deprived of food and water. Not something to read first thing in the morning, but people need to realize what Terri is already going through.
A conscious [cognitively disabled] person would feel it just as you or I would. They will go into seizures. Their skin cracks, their tongue cracks, their lips crack. They may have nosebleeds because of the drying of the mucus membranes, and heaving and vomiting might ensue because of the drying out of the stomach lining. They feel the pangs of hunger and thirst. Imagine going one day without a glass of water! Death by dehydration takes ten to fourteen days. It is an extremely agonizing death.
This isn't just letting someone "slip away." This is going to take
March 20, 2005
Terri's parents and hot sister (must find pics) just told reporters their happiness with the passage of the Terri Schiavo bill.
House Voting Begins
The speeches are over. The House is voting.
UPDATE: Still waiting for the voting to end. Read Paul's no-holds-barred blasting of the Democrats.
UPDATE II: The bill has passed 200-55. Obviously, not everybody showed up to vote.
UPDATE III: The country is safe. Congress is in recess until April.
Terri Schiavo and Her Father
Drudge played audio of Terri Schiavo and her father last Friday after her feeding tube was removed. Take it for what it's worth.
"Audio of Terri Schiavo after the Tube was Removed!"
House is Now in Session
The House is again in session to pass a bill to move Terri Schiavo's case to federal court.
UPDATE: C-SPAN reports that after three hours of debate a vote will take place shortly after midnight Monday morning.
UPDATE II: Rep. Wexler declares 19 judges have ruled Terri should die, many medical experts have declared Terri
There are many questions left unanswered:
In 2003, Wesley Smith asked plenty of other questions.
UPDATE III: To get a little lighthearted (and this issue needs it) but Rep. Jerrold Nadler (D-NY) seems to have lost weight. Good for him. He's now less likely to have a stroke. Still, I hope Nadler has a living will.
I also get a kick out of Democrats talking about the limits of the federal government. I sympathize with the federalism argument. I wish Congress didn't have to act. I don't know about what the unindented consequences of this law would be.
To get more serious, I learned from Nadler that having a functioning cerebral cortex is the definition of human life. Maybe, maybe not. I admit ignorance. I just wonder if the many people unfortunately born with only a brainstem deserve no love, care, or treatment.
UPDATE IV: Someone should tell Rep. Rick Renzy (R-AZ) that he's wearing an ugly suit. He looks like he just came out of a Vegas casino.
UPDATE V: If I hear one more Congressmen praising a party leader I'll puke. Let's get this vote over with.
Senate Acts for Terri
While House Democrats obstruct Terri Schiavo's federal court hearing, the Senate succeeded in passing the legislation. The House is gathering up enough members for an early Monday morning vote.
"Senate Passes Legislation on Schiavo Case"
Coming to a Store Near You
Terri Schiavo isn't the only Culture of Death story out there. Federal regulators are ready to make a morning after pill, Plan B, available without a prescription. What a country we live in. Vioxx and other pain-relieving medicines are pulled off the market because they slightly increased one's chances of heart attacks, but women will soon be able to pop into a drug store, buy some pills, and kill their unborn child--all without consulting a doctor.
"US Close To Approving Plan B Emergency Contraceptive"
"FDA Expects to Ease Plan B Availability"
Still No Congressional Action
Congressional Republicans were all set to pass a bill to get Terri Schiavo a hearing in federal court. Because legislators are away on Easter Break the House of Representatives were going to pass the bill with a voice vote. President Bush cut short his Texas ranch weekend. House Speaker Dennis Hastert (R-IL) gaveled a session today only to recess it immediately.
But then we learn Democrats prefer to have Terri die. Rep. Robert Wexler (D-FL) wraps it in quasi-federalism:
The Republicans in Congress do not like the results that the Florida courts have reached and they are going to this extraordinary remedy of now stripping the Florida court of its jurisdiction so that maybe there can be another outcome.
Rep. Earl Blumenauer (D-OR) decided that those who want to prolong human life are "intolerant."
Politically it's a dumb move. The move ticks off the right-to-life crowd which is bigger and more organized than euthanasia backers. More importantly having a hearing in federal court doesn't mean Michael Schiavo won't still get his wish to have his wife die. All the bill would do is allow a federal court hearing. There's no guarantee Terri's parents would win.
"Democrats Won't Expedite Schiavo Bill; Vote Delayed"
"Democrats Block Voice Vote In House"
Congress Soon to Act on Terri's Behalf
Congressional leaders expect to pass some kind of legislation in the next day or so to allow Terri Schiavo's case to be heard in federal court. It would buy her some time, but unless new facts (i.e. more tests including an MRI) are allowed into her case this would just delay the inevitable.
"Congress Reaches Deal in Schiavo Case"
March 19, 2005
On a Roll
There's someone more depressed than me about the removal of Terri Shiavo's feeding tube.
We no longer inhabit "civilization" -- we are barbarians.
If Matthew Sitman would have been around when Roe v. Wade became law of the land he probably would have pulled a Heaven's Gate or Jonestown.
I'm not as dramatic or pessimistic as Sitman. Sure, we've witnessed a moment of great saddness. We've seen how the law can be an ass and allow someone to suffer a crueler death than that of a pet. Let's not go over the deep end. Annual abortions are going down. Teen pregnancy and sexual activity are also going down. These are some of the social trends that make me hopeful about the future.
It's painful knowing someone is dying unjustly. That's a useful feeling to let us know we still live in an imperfect world filled with much injustice. "The fight for life is always real." We must never waver from defending the innocent and defenseless.
"This is the Way the World Ends"
March 18, 2005
Congress' Role is Saving Terri
Peggy Noonan is one of the best writers of our time. She's passionate, moving, and full of heart. In calling for Congressional Republicans to do everything in their power to save Terri, she may be letting her heart rule over her head. True, Congress may have the power to subpoena Terri, giving her time for other legal measures to be tried, but is this the proper role of the federal government? Peggy doesn't even try to answer this question. Terri Schiavo doesn't involve interstate commerce, national defense, or some other federal interest. It's a case of a husband wanting his wife to die and a judge too pigheaded to entertain new medical facts. The Florida legislature thought they ended this dispute with Terri's Law, but that was struck down by a court. They can't even come together to pass new legislation. Why should Congress get involved when Florida is conflicted?
I also disagree with Peggy's political calculation. Congressmen won't be harmed if Terri dies a horrible, cruel death. An effort has been made. Terri's defenders are mostly conservatives. A conservative temperment involves understanding that not everything is possible. All men and institutions have constraints.
Sometimes all we can do is pray.
"'Don't Kick It'"
Dr. Cranford Responds
Michael Schiavo's main medical expert Dr. Donald Cranford responds to the NRO article I linked to previously. In Dr. Cranford's opinion further tests would have been redundant:
An MRI was never recommended because, in this case and other patients in a permanent vegetative state, the CT scans were more than adequate to demonstrate the extremely severe atrophy of the cerebral hemispheres, and an MRI would add nothing of significance to what we see on the CT scans. Plus the MRI is contraindicated because of the intrathalamic stimulators implanted in Terri's brain. A PET scan was never done in this case because it was never needed. The classic clinical signs on examination, the CT scans, and the flat EEG's were more than adequate to diagnose PVS to the highest degree of medical certainty, along with the credible testimony of the three neurologists at the longest evidentiary hearing in American law, whose opinions were strongly affirmed by the trial court judge and three appeal court judges. Please see Judge Greer's opinions on the credibility of the experts testifying on behalf of the Schindler family.
But the question Rev. Johansen wonders if if Terri is even in a permanent vegetative state. Did Dr. Cranford simply use the CT scan to reaffirm his initial diagnosis? This may be the first time in recent memory where a doctor didn't order test after test to further satisfy his judgement.
As pigheaded as Dr. Cranford is Judge Greer. For him, no new information will be allowed to come forth. Once his decision was made it is final. Such infalibility should be saved for Popes not for those who have the power of life and death in their hands.
Hoping for a Miracle
Terri Schiavo's uphill battle to live has been too depressing for me to write much about. It seems inevitable that later today her feeding tube will be removed, and she'll begin her painful path toward her heavenly Father. I'm saddened that our culture has produced misguided men like Michael Schiavo and Judge George Greer who fail to put the benefit of the doubt on human life. We now learn that minimal testing has been done to determine Terri's injuries.
Pray for a miracle. Terri needs one now. Rep. Mike Enzi (R-WY) calling Terri to testify before his committee may be part of it. But this wacky idea will only delay.
February 25, 2005
Combining sweets with death is sick. But when it's "just a clump of cells" it's an event.
"Death by Chocolate"
Terri Schiavo's Long March continues with a judge ruling her feeding tube can be removed 03.18. That gives Terri's family three weeks to put together one last legal defense.
I haven't posted anything until now on this permutation of the story. With the Florida legislature not being able to stop Terri's husband from starving her to death my hope disappeared. In a way it's good that still in America a loud group, maybe even a majority, can't infringe on a family. However, Terri's case is an awful demonstration of that sanctity.
If Terri's feeding tube is removed in three weeks that's not the end. She begins a long, agonzing path toward death. It'd be better for her suffering if her husband would just put a bullet in her--not that I'd support that either. A dying puppy would suffer less. If we did to an animal what Michael Schiavo wants to do to her wife PETA and (unfortunately) more of the public would cry out.
Unlike Terri's parents I don't think she'll ever get better. Still, that doesn't mean she has to die. It doesn't mean she can't still give and receive love.
"Man Cleared to Remove Wife's Feeding Tube"
January 12, 2005
Ronald Bailey writes about a set of drugs called Plan B that taken after unprotected sex stop or prevent a pregnancy. The FDA is deciding whether to allow women over 16 to buy the drugs without a prescription. Bailey writes "that wider use of the pills could cut in half the nation's 3 million unintended pregnancies each year and in turn prevent hundreds of thousands of abortions." Maybe, maybe not. It all depends on how Plan B works. Bailey describes Plan B as "two high-dose contraceptive pills that either interfere with ovulation or fertilization, or prevent implantation of a fertilized egg. It has no effect once an egg is firmly implanted in the uterine wall." The prevention of ovulation and fertilization should offer no concerns for the strictest of pro-lifers like me. A sperm or egg has the same moral status as a brain or skin cell. None of those are a unique set of DNA that left to nature would grow into a fully-developed human being. Preventing a fertilized egg from adhering to the uterine wall causes a very early miscarriage. That's a drug-induced abortion. Thus Plan B wouldn't prevent as many abortions as Bailey claims, it would actually be the method of abortion.
January 03, 2005
South Dakota's governor, Mike Rounds wants Roe v. Wade overturned, and he wants his state to play an important role. An abortion-banning law almost passed the South Dakota legislature last year. Rounds wants to try again this year. However, some legislators wonder if the timing is right. "There are others that feel, 'Hey, let's see what happens with the Bush administration. Let's see what happens with the makeup of the Supreme Court.' Maybe 2005 is not the year. Maybe it's 2006," said one lawmaker. Thus the importance of an opening on the U.S. Supreme Court in the near future.
January 02, 2005
Thow Them for a Loop
With the attention devoted to my post on Gitmo prisoners I could really mix things up by talking about why I'm against the death penalty. Unfortunately for you all, I'm tired and am calling it a night. Maybe tomorrow. Let me say the key to my thinking deals with how much of a threat someone is.
December 03, 2004
"Inspired by Utilitarian Cynicism"
The Vatican's H.E. Msgr Elio Sgreccia responds to the Groningen Protocol. It's good stuff even for those who are pro-life but not Catholic like me.
November 30, 2004
What Hath Man Wrought!
In a startling announcement even for the morally lax Netherlands a hospital has admitted it kills children in the name of "mercy."
The Health Ministry is preparing its response to the request, a spokesman said, and it may come as soon as December.
A Western nation has come to the point where it's acceptable for doctors to commit an act that leads to a child's death. I'm not talking about an act of omission where care is denied and a patient dies because of that. I'm referring to an overt act where a poison is delivered that kills the patient. It starts with children with awful ailments, but it will eventually move onto children with lesser medical problems. It will even move to those who don't meet the subjective standards of parents or society. It will become a form of eugenics, but on a family scale. That doesn't make it any less decadent or evil than the early 20th century government directed version.
This is the same nation that is having convulsions over the Islamist murder of Theo Van Gough. It seems the able-bodied is considered more deserving of life than some unknown newborn afflicted in a Dutch hospital.
I'd like to think the U.S. was better, but our courts won't even allow a partial-birth abortion ban to become law. I can see how a non-Westerner could view the West as morally bankrupt by how we allow the legal killing of the unborn and now the medically vulnerable.
"Netherlands Hospital Euthanizes Babies"
September 24, 2004
Roe v. Wade: "Exercise of Raw Judicial Power"
U.S. Circuit Judge Edith Jones has guaranteed she will never meet the approval of Senate Democrats. Do we know for sure she isn't related to Antonin Scalia?
September 06, 2004
Telling It Like It Is
A DFL (Democratic Farmer Labor) candidate for House is running against an incumbent DFL'er for Minnesota's 8th Congressional District Seat.
A political newcomer is trying to defeat one of the longest-sitting members of the U.S. House of Representatives to represent much of northern Minnesota.
Ho hum, pretty vanilla. First question: What amount of money will be considered enough to "improve education"? Someone get back to me on that one.
But here candidate Johnson expresses where he differs from Congressman Oberstar on the core DFL issues:
Johnson said he differs from Oberstar on guns, saying he identifies himself with the positions of the National Rifle Association as opposed to Oberstar's voting record in favor of gun control.
I find it interesting that the St. Cloud Times article (by the way, the St Cloud Times has never heard of permalinks, so you have today to see this article) would go so far as to say that a candidate is pro-abortion, and the other anti-abortion, as opposed to the "pro-choice" and "pro-life" monikers.
St. Cloud is located in Stearns County, which is Minnesota's Catholic Hotbed(tm), loaded for bear with pro-life residents. Could this be a way to sway the primary voters? They aren't in Stearns County; Stearns is in the 6th Congressional District . The 8th Congressional District includes two counties, Morrison and Mille Lacs, that are in the SCT reading area, so I imagine that is why the paper covered this story, but I'm not as sure if those counties are as full of Catholic, pro-life voters that Stearns is.
August 18, 2004
PETA wants to use Ronald Reagan in an ad campaign to promote vegetarianism. That's the tasteless part. The dumb part is they're taking a web poll asking for others' opinions. Let's stuff the ballot to give PETA a clear signal that Reagan's image shouldn't be used for wacky Lefty causes. (Then go out and get a big, juicy steak.)
August 13, 2004
The Wall Street Journal editoral page cuts through Kerry Edwards', Ron Reagan's, and most of the media's rhetoric about a so-called "stem cell ban."
The issue is federal subsidies. The need for a Presidential decision arose from an appropriations rider passed by Congress in the mid-1990s forbidding federal funding for any research that creates, injures or destroys human embryos.
These scientists who see this "ban" as opposing science are either 1.) misinformed; 2.) in it for the (government) money; 3.) so aloof as to believe only scientists have any useful opinion about science; or 4.) partisan hacks doing their part to elect John Kerry.
"The (Political) Science of Stem Cells"
August 10, 2004
Kerry's stand on stem cells isn't just morally wrong, but the science doesn't back him. Too bad many scientists are keeping their mouths shut hoping for lots of federal dollars (and the private dollars that will follow). These scientists claim to be "objective," "independent," and without ideology when, in fact, they promote an ideology of science trumping any human value in its way.
UPDATE: Joe Carter gives us some detail about the actual law on stem cell research.
August 09, 2004
Kerry Edwards on Stem Cells
Today, Sen. John Edwards said it was "a sad day" because it was the anniversary of President Bush's decision to limit federal funding on embryonic stem cells. Edwards said the decision "put restrictions in place that dramatically undermine our efforts to find cures for diseases." Maybe, maybe not. But one way for sure to find cures for disease is for science to begin unlimited, coerced human testing. If doctors and scientists had free reign to do any studies on any type of human being I'm pretty confident extraordinary cures would be discovered. We don't allow that to happen in the U.S. because we believe the ends don't justify the means. Turning people into medical slaves to benefit the rest of humanity doesn't outweigh violating basic human rights.
To those of us who believe human life begins at conception, embryonic stem cell research that kills the embryo is akin to coerced medical study. This debate isn't about one side opposing research that might cure disease and the other side championing medical miracles.
And sorry Glenn, but John Kerry isn't right. In America we don't sacrifice some for the common good.
"First Lady Bashes Kerry Stem Cell Stance"
August 03, 2004
The Wayback Machine
Let's go back in time one week to Ron Reagan's "non-political" stem cell speech. John Cole refuted some of the myths surrounding this issue.
Let me make this clear. I'm not opposed to stem cell research per se. I oppose the killing of unborn children to get embryonic stem cells. It's bad enough that over 40 million children have been killed because of a mother's awful "choice," but it will be even worse to turn unborn human beings to stem cells farms for the rest of us.
"Just Out of Curiosity"
July 23, 2004
What do you think the chances are that if the police find who drove through a display of crosses at a church, that the person will be charged with a hate crime?
Broken crosses littered the tire track-covered lawn of Gethsemane Covenant Church, 4479 Ugstad Road, on Thursday morning as volunteers surveyed damage to the "Cemetery of Innocence," a display of 400 three-foot crosses each representing 10 abortions.
Since it's "politically correct" to be pro-choice and anti-Christian, my guess is that anyone charged would be only charged with vandalism.
July 13, 2004
Bring the Message to the People
In Minneapolis, trucks are coming through with the intent of enraging people.
If you frequent downtown Minneapolis or St. Paul, you'll probably see them this week -- grisly images of tiny body parts said to be the byproducts of abortions -- 22 feet long and 8 feet high, rolling by on truck after truck as a caravan sponsored by abortion foes hits town.
He's right. I am pretty upfront about my politics and am very prolife. Being out front and vocal, even confrontational, is the way I play things some times. I'm not in or near Minneapolis this week, so I won't likely see them, unless they show them on the local news.
I don't think they will win any converts on their mission, just make people mad. But shocking people is sometimes the only way to get through to them.
July 11, 2004
Reagan to Speak Before Dems
The only people who will be upset about Ronald Reagan's son speaking at the Democratic National Convention are unthinking, thin-skinned Reagan worshipers who think a political viewpoint is passed on genetically.
To the substance of what Reagan will speak about--embryonic stem cell research--he is in disagreement with his late father. (So, ignore where Ron says, "The Republican Party now is not the Republican Party of my father.") He told a Knight Ridder reporter:
The conservative right has a rather simplistic way of characterizing it as baby killing. We're not talking about fingers and toes and brains. This is a mass of a couple hundred undifferentiated cells.
Ah yes, the old "undifferentiated cells" argument. If it's just a mass of tissue, then why not perform potentially life-saving research? That would make sense unless you have the moral imagination to see that tissue mass as the beginnings of person with a unique genetic make-up.
When it comes to denying liberty to an individual we have high standards--"beyond a reasonable doubt" for criminal cases and "by a preponderance of the evidence" for civil cases. When it comes to the beginnings of human life legally, we don't err on the side of caution, but leave it up to the unborn's mother. That looks horribly similar to the relationship between slavemasters and their slaves in the pre-emancipation South.
No, I'm not talking about Kerry's and Edwards' cozy, new-found relationship. Instead I'm talking about Jim VandeHei and Dan Balz of the Washington Post starting to dig into Edwards' view of human life and abortion. Here's a portion of an interview with the running mates:
Kerry, who recently said he agrees with the Roman Catholic Church that life begins at conception, said he disagrees with his church's teaching that homosexuality is a sin. Edwards twice did not respond when asked if he, too, believes life begins at conception.
The reporters needed to follow up Edwards' non-answer by having him explain what values he was displaying when he "channeled the words of an unborn baby girl" before a jurry in 1985.
"Kerry Vows To Restore 'Truth' to Presidency"
June 17, 2004
Avoiding Plain Speaking
The euphemisms abortion defenders use for the brutal procedure reek of Orwell. Rich Lowry writes:
Actually, you might get sick if abortionists don't use euphemisms. According to Coffin, a doctor in one of the trials described crushing an infant's skull as "reduc[ing]" the "fetal calvarium" to facilitate "completion of delivery." The completed delivery, of course, of an infant with a crushed skull. Another doctor said he "separated" the "fetal calvarium" from the infant's body. Yes, and Abu Zarqawi separated Nick Berg's calvarium from his body too.
There's something intrinsicaly wrong about abortion for its most stout defenders to not call a spade a spade.
"The Right that Dare not Speak its Name"
June 14, 2004
Better Off Dead
Thanks to Joni I give you this odd court ruling dealing with human life. A woman will be allowed to sue her doctor for mental anguish for botching a chemical abortion. In other words, Karen Sheppard will be able to sue her doctor for not killing her child. As an added bonus, Sheppard can sue for malpractice on behalf of her child. Can the child sue her mother for wanting her dead?
I know this case is more complicated than how I stated it. However, it is in keeping with my claim that legalized abortion has greatly diminshed the value of human life. In Sheppard's case some would take the survivial of the child from both chemical abortion and birth--where doctors said she wouldn't be able to carry the child to term--as a miracle. By suing Sheppard makes it known that she would rather have her child dead than alive.
"Mother May Claim Emotional Damages for Harm at Birth"
June 12, 2004
Legal Claim Before Life
The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals has struck again when it comes to strange rulings. This is the same court that ruled the Declaration of Independence unconstitutional because of the phrase "under God." The court has now ruled twins can receive Social Security death benefits even though they weren't even conceived until years after their father's death. This is interesting since the law of the land allows the unborn to be killed in the womb at the descression of the mother. Yet somehow children are entitled to survivor benefits even though they didn't even exist when the death occured.
If this case doesn't reach the Supreme Court it makes for a further burdening of the S.S. fund. I'm sure there are many more cases of dead people's sperm and eggs sitting in freezers where they could be thawed, implanted, then born. And how would this case be applied to a scenerio where a child was conceived with a parent's DNA instead of sex cell? Would a legal entitlement also apply beyond Social Security? Could these twins lay claim to their father's property?
"Appeals Court Rules Benefits OK for Twins"
April 27, 2004
April 26, 2004
Emily reports on her experience at yesterday's pro-abortion march.
Then there's this sad comment on two letters expressing post-abortion regret:
While they regret their abortions, those who value sanity should not. When I read their letters all I can think is how lucky we are that these women did not have their babies. They are far too immature, delusional and self-pitying to be good mothers.
I guess 'tis better to kill the innocent than grant them any chance at a good life.
March 24, 2004
Abort or Fail
Bad news on the abortion front in Canada. A student was given a failing grade because he refused to take part in abortion procedures.
"Medical Student Being Failed at University of Manitoba for Not Providing Abortion Option"
March 11, 2004
Abu Abbas: "Martyr"
Here's another reason to despise Yasser Arafat:
Yasser Arafat, the Palestinian leader, yesterday mourned the death of the "martyr" who masterminded the hijacking of a cruise ship in which a wheelchair-bound American tourist was shot dead and his body dumped overboard.
And we should be surprised suicide bombing is an accepted form of aggression in Palestine?
Somehow Laurence is taking this calmly.
"Arafat Hails Cruise Ship Hijacker as 'Martyr'"
February 11, 2004
South Korean scientists have "mined" stem cells from a human embryo. Mark today as a historic date when a whole class of human beings began to be created and destroyed to satisfy the needs, desires, and whims of others. Sure many may benefit, but even the pleasant facade Antebellum South was built on the backs of African slaves.
"Stem Cells Mined From Human Embryo Clone"
January 10, 2004
No Communion for Abortion Backers
This is sure to upset pro-abortion types and those who think it's right, yet alone possible, to separate one's religious beliefs from their actions as government officials.
"Bishop Bans Some Catholic Legislators from Receiving Communion"
January 08, 2004
Clark's Lucky He Had a Nice Mom
There's the process of campaigning where the candidate can either try traditional methods to get his message out or go the innovative route. Wesley Clark went for the latter today with an online chat with webloggers.
However, innovative campaigning can't make up for radicalism on issues. In an interview with The Union Leader, Clark demonstrated that his abortion stance goes beyond even Roe v. Wade. For Clark, "Life begins with the mother's decision." Forget anything about trimesters and fetal viability. One person's life is determined by the arbitrary choice of another. Does that mean Clark accepts infanticide? Can the mother resind her life decision if her child has a grave illness or medical condition? This thinking is eerily like that of philosopher Peter Singer who thinks it's perfectly acceptable to kill people who "rationality, autonomy, and self-consciousness."
"Clark: Abortion Decision is the Mom's Alone"
December 17, 2003
"Morning-After" Pills Next to the Tylenol
Selling Plan B, a "morning-after" pill, over the counter might not be as bad as I first thought. The pill is a massive dose of hormones that can prevent fertilization (My views aren't as strict as those of the Catholic Church). But it can also prevent a fertilized egg from implanting itself in the uterus. When that happens it's a chemical abortion, and that's my problem with it. If a pill could be made where only fertilization was prevented, my opposition would be cease. Regardless of my moral concerns, an FDA advisory panel recommended morning-after pill be sold as easily as asprin.
December 12, 2003
Death Over the Counter
The idea of dropping into the local Wallgreens, putting a few bucks down, and getting some morning-after pills to kill your unborn child is barbaric. What would come next, do-it-yourself partial-birth abortion kits? Here we have technology attempting to make up for personal mistakes. The price to be paid is in the blood of dead children. Will we learn that there isn't a technological fix for everything?
December 11, 2003
Slartibartfast tells the story of his family's first adoption. This culture war isn't just playing the role of the critic. It also involves sharing the joy of a family being formed.
"The First Adoption"
"First Adoption, Part II"
November 25, 2003
Here's a symptom of the Palestinians turning homicide bombers into martyr-heroes. They could use a Care Bear airdrop.
November 24, 2003
An Adoption Story
In the fight against the Culture of Death, adoption has to be promoted. In a country like China where there is a great desire to have a boy, girls are abandoned or aborted. Slartibastfast posts on going there to get their second child. He writes:
Adoption is a wonderful thing. I have people tell me all the time they have reservations about adoption, wondering if they could possibly love a child not of their flesh as much as a natural born child. I usually reply that I can't imagine loving either of my daughters any more if we'd had them the usual way. So, I have to strongly recommend it for couples who are past safe age of conception, or who are experiencing fertility issues, or who otherwise aren't well suited for childbirth.
"The Second Adoption"
November 20, 2003
Since the brain is an amazing, yet baffling organ, imagine what Terri Schiavo's life could be like now, if her husband had put her through therapy instead of spending money on lawyers to kill her.
November 19, 2003
What Happened to Terri?
Nat Hentoff is doing one heck of a job in asking important questions surrounding the Terri Schiavo case. His latest column reports on a bone scan that shows, "This patient [Schiavo] has a history of trauma. The presumption is that the other multiple areas of trauma also relate to previous trauma." Where did this trauma come from and why has Michael Schiavo been so insistent on wanting her to die? These are important questions that should have been asked before the courts let Michael starve Terri.
November 17, 2003
Reporter Awakens from Coma
Here's a case where the man wanted the woman in a coma to live, and they weren't even married yet. Steve Fullington has more love for his fiance Rebecca Spitz than Michael Schiavo has for his wife Terri.
November 09, 2003
Duck Wishes Terri Was Dead
In Florida, Howard Dean harped about Terri's Law which saved Terri Schiavo from death by starvation and dehydration. "I'm tired of people in the legislature thinking that they have an M.D. when what they really have is a B.S.," Dean said in Tallahassee. Such a smug remark demonstrates the Duck's arrogance. To him, only doctors can form a valid opinion on a medical issue. Any intellectually honest person could examine Terri Schiavo's case and come to any number of conclusions. Because of the circumstances surrounding this case, Gov. Bush and the Florida legislature erred on the side of life. As a doctor, you'd think Dean would approve of that. He doesn't because it counters his radical view that doctors should be in the business of killing their patients.
"Dean 'Appalled' That Florida Lawmakers Saved Schiavo"
November 02, 2003
RU-486 Claims Another Victim
RU-486 is suppose to make abortion as simple as popping a few pills. That didn't happen to Holly Patterson who died of septic shock due to the drug. Here's some irony. I'm sure thousands of women have already taken RU-486 to kill their babies with nothing but news silence, but when the mother dies it's a story. Another thing to think about: it's legal for a woman to consume a substance that kills here child inside her womb, but it would be illegal to poison the baby just after birth.
October 29, 2003
Michael Schiavo Going to Court Again
Michael Schiavo is challenging the Florida law that let his wife be fed. No surprise here. I just wonder how Teri's life would have been different if Michael would have actually spent the malpractice award money on her rehabilitation instead of lawyers.
"Husband Contests Law in Florida Right-To-Die Case"
October 28, 2003
A President for Life
From today's Presidential press conference:
Q Sir, in your last campaign, you said that the American public was not ready for a complete ban on abortion. You're about to sign legislation that will ban a certain abortion procedure known as partial birth. Do you believe that the climate has changed since the last campaign and all abortions should be banned? And do you believe your brother made the correct decision in Florida when he intervened in the case of a woman who had been ordered by the courts to be taken off life support?
He's right about the state of the culture. People care more about allowing the freedom to choose to kill their unborn child than the child itself. They are more concerned about post-birth women's autonomy than pre-birth women's.
The abortion debate has been in a stalemate even since Roe v. Wade. That is because through some really bad judicial reasoning the court federalized the issue. Without Roe abortions would be legal. The Supreme Court took the issue away from the states and made D.C. the focal point. Dumping Roe would not send women into back alleys to risk their lives. It would just return the debate back to the individual states where legalization or illegalization should be decided.
"U.S. Not Ready for Total Abortion Ban, Bush Says"
October 24, 2003
Saletan Doesn't Get It
Will Saletan can say all he wants that a partial-birth abortion has nothing to do with a birth because the baby is so small when killed (around 20 weeks). The child is almost completely out of the vagina (Oh, no! Here come the sick Google searches.) then killed. Who cares that babies born at around one pound (500 grams) have only a 14% chance to live. The method is a birth interrupted by a (currently) legal kill. If the child was completely removed from the mother then killed, that would be considered murder. But right now, it's legal to partially remove the child and then kill her. Throw out logic when it comes to defending abortion.
By the way, I love it when abortion proponents like Katrina vanden Heuvel start quivering.
Bailey on Schiavo
Ronald Bailey gets way to analytical over the Terri Schiavo case. He offers long quotes from AMA and National Institute for Neurological Disorders and Stroke reports. What he doesn't include are the financial and familial benefits Terri's husband Michael would recieve upon her death.
Bailey also doesn't mention that death by starvation and dehydration is a very cruel way to go. Denying food and water to a pet could result in jail time in most states.
Terri might not live long anyway. Who knows how much damage happened because of six days without food and water?
It appears that Bailey is (to use Wesley Smith's words) one of those who "no longer believe that people like Terri Schiavo are fully human."
"Is Terri Schiavo Dead?"
"No Mercy in Florida"
How twisted is this? Planned Parenthood League of Massachusetts is celebrating Roe v. Wade by having a prom.
October 21, 2003
Schiavo Being Fed Again
Florida Gov. Jeb Bush ordered Terri Schiavo to be fed again. The severely injured woman had her feeding tube removed last week. The Florida legislature quickly passed a bill giving Bush the power to override the court order allowing Schiavo to be starved to death.
"Fla. Gov. Orders Feeding Resumed for Comatose Woman"
UPDATE: The AP calls the Schiavo case "one of the nation's longest and most bitter right-to-die battles." It's more proper to call it a "right-to-kill battle." The only people who want Terri dead are her husband, Michael Schiavo and the doctors he's hired. No one really knows what Terri wants. Her husband claims dying is what Terri would want, but there's proof of such a request. With such uncertainty we should err on the side of caution.
"Fla. Gov. To Restore Feeding Tube?"
October 16, 2003
Ben Domenech on Terri Schiavo
Here's a portion of a fine, fine post:
What strange fashion of humanity is this? This dictum that sets the weak, the dull-witted, the deformed, the unborn, the elderly up as victims of our undying quest for quiet social efficiency? Have we lost what conscience we had left?
Terri is being killed because she's an inconvience to her husband who has "moved on." And the Florida courts become an accessory to the crime.
"The Conscious Death"
A Legal Kill
The Culture of Death claims another victory. Yesterday, doctors removed Terri Schiavo's feeding tube. Without it she will die in 7-10 days. Her husband claims that's what Terri wants. However, according to Janet Folger, Michael Schiavo would end up with a new family and $1.3 million if Terri dies. Terri's parents have found Michael's efforts to kill his wife for years. They argue Terri responds to them and could be rehabilitated. Doctors have testified that Terri's actions are only reflexes. Being able to communicate is not grounds for death. If that were the case then Stephen Hawking would be dead without his speech synthesizer. Terri isn't on a respirator or a heart and lung machine. She just needs a feeding tube to stay alive. Is she a burden on her family? Yes, but being a burden does not mean you can be killed. This case could have profound affects on how families and courts treat very disabled people.
And what a horrible way to die. Not eating for day can be painful. I can't imagine the suffering Terri will have to endure. Human rights activists scream for mercy toward terrorists held in Guantanamo Bay, but at least they are being fed. They are not trying to save Terri's life.
"Fla. Doctors Remove Woman's Feeding Tube"
"Fla. Court OKs Letting Woman Die"
September 13, 2003
More Human Every Day
The more we learn about the unborn, the more we realize that they indeed are human. Fetuses smile, blink, and cry inthe womb. Technology is showing us they are more than clumps of cells that can be discarded when inconvenient.
"Smiling from the Womb"
September 09, 2003
Mississippi's Pro-Life Ruling
Robert Sargent examines the opinions in a recent Mississippi Supreme Court case where it was ruled a mother could sue for wrongful death on behalf of her fetus. He calls for abortion backers to support federalism or Roe v. Wade "will someday be totally chipped away."
"The Writing's on the Wall"
Where Were the Protesters?
Last week when Paul Hill was executed, Joshua Claybourn noticed there were few protestering the execution. I admit, I wasn't screaming about how Hill shouldn't have been killed. Since I'm in the minority on this issue and with this country's infatuation with the death penalty (not as black a mark as legalized abortion) I didn't feel compelled to comment. Every few weeks someone is being killed by the state. When I find out about it I sigh a little knowing it didn't ease anyone's pain or bring anyone back from the dead.
September 08, 2003
Not a Federal Case
Jacob Sullum wonders about the constitutionality of Federal Access to Clinic Entrances (FACE) Act which makes it a federal crime to interfere with an reproductive health clinic.
September 03, 2003
Opposing the death penalty is difficult. My position means I support the continued incarceration of horrible people at the taxpayers' expense. But needless killing of human beings coarsens us. That said, I'm pleased with the overturning of over 100 death sentences out west.
"Judges' Rulings Imposing Death Are Overturned"
In Florida, Catholic bishops spoke out against killing Terri Schindler Schiavo by having her feeding tube removed. The bishops then made some important distinctions on when to continue treatment and when to withhold it:
Just as we are concerned for Terri Schiavo, we are also concerned for others who are weak and vulnerable. There is an inherent danger in assuming that food and water can simply be withheld without clearly knowing a patient’s wishes. There is reason to be circumspect and ever careful in these cases. We reject outright the euthanasia movement and its utilitarian standard that some lives are not worth living. Every life is precious and unrepeatable.
"Florida Bishops Reject 'Euthanasia' in Terri Schiavo Case"
August 27, 2003
Unborn Has Rights in Mississippi
Last week the Mississippi Supreme Court ruled that a mother could go forward with wrongful death lawsuit on behalf of her unborn child. In the ruling Justice Jim Smith wrote,
Tucker's interest is to protect and preserve the life of her unborn child, not in the exercise of her right to terminate that life which has been declared constitutional by the U.S. Supreme Court.
In essence the right to life of an unborn child rests solely in the intent of the mother. Only the mother can decide when her child can live or die. Under this jurisprudence one person determines the human rights of another. If that's not akin to slavery, I don't know what is.
"Mississippi Supreme Court Rules Unborn Child is a Person"
August 23, 2003
Duck is Pro-Suicide
It's hard for me to see how Howard the Duck could be taken out of context. He told Oregon Public Radio that, "I think states have to make up their own mind" on assisted suicide. He went on to say:
I as a physician would not be comfortable administering lethal drugs, but I think this a very private, personal decision and I think individual physicians and patients have the right to make that private decision.
It's the typical pro-death line. "I wouldn't kill anyone myself, but people should be allow to do so." Duck is trying to have it both ways. He never said if suicide was right or wrong. Such an abstention from moral reasoning is by default pro-death.
"Presidential Candidate Howard Dean Endorses Assisted Suicide"
August 05, 2003
Death Down Under
Australia is on the cutting edge of suicide methods. A few years ago, Dr. Philip Nitschke built a computer-controlled IV killing device. Now, the group Exit Australia had a public display to see which cars were the best producers of CO. The more CO the car pumps out, the easier it would be for people to run a hose from the exhaust pipe into the car to suffocate.
Exit Australia has gone beyond the "mainstream" euthanasia movement to advocate the death of non-terminally ill people. Exit Australia spokesman John Edge said,
I saw a guy die from this a few years ago and it left a lasting impression in my mind. No way in the world would I ever go down that path. I'm also totally opposed to being incarcerated in a nursing home should my health deteriorate to the point where I can't look after myself.
For Edge, a nursing home is akin to jail and economics is a proper justification for suicide.
Last January, Dr. Nitschke declared that people should take an elderly's decision to die seriously even if that person is healthy:
I pointed out that it's not uncommon that people get to a point in their adult life - possibly around 80 - that rather than wait for something to go wrong, they feel in a very rational way that they want to end their lives at that point, that they've come to the point where their lives are best ended.
Should we be surprised that people are trying to push the suicide line out farther and farther? Next, these people will advocate the killing of the retarded or those with diseases that impede on their quality of life. Got multiple sclerosis? There isn't a cure, and life won't be easy. Stop any potential pain and suffering to you and your family by jumping into your CO generating car and hitting the accelerator.
"Euthanasia Proponents Hold Public Exhaust Fume Demo"
"Activist Wonders, Why Limit Suicide Option To The Terminally-Ill?"
August 03, 2003
A Doctor's Letter
A very sad and disturbing letter was printed in The Washington Times. A neonatologist writes about his experience learning his profession. The first disturbing scene is where he's assisting in a hysterectomy/therapeutic abortion:
I already had assisted on two other hysterectomies, one for endometrial cancer and the other for a benign tumor. I had been taught during those first two cases to "always open the uterus and examine the contents" before sending the specimen to pathology. So, after the professor removed the uterus, I asked him if he wanted me to open it, eager to show him I already knew standard procedure. He replied, "No, because the fetus might be alive and then we would be faced with an ethical dilemma."
Another scene involves a partial-birth abortion:
One day, the obstetrical resident who was rotating through the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) was excited that he was going to get to learn a new procedure, a type of abortion. This obstetrical resident explained to several of the pediatric residents and me that a woman in labor and delivery in her late third trimester had a fetus who was breech (a baby positioned buttocks, not head, first) and also was severely hydrocephalic.
Dr. Swingle's conclusion is that "the difference between a fetus and a premature infant is a social distinction, not a biologic one."
If it is wanted, it is a baby; if not wanted, it is a fetus. When I started medical school, I viewed abortion as just another medical procedure and the products of conception as tissue. After 20 years of practicing neonatology, I now know this is not the case. I believe that after abortion became legal, the mantra of "it's just tissue" took hold in the medical and lay communities, and most never stopped to question if it were correct.
[via Ben Domenech]
June 12, 2003
Like everything in life the Internet brings good and bad. Quick communication and access to vast amounts of information are great. Tools like e-mail, the Web, chat rooms, and message boards also can help people end their lives as in the case of Suzy Gonzales. Those who hound websites like the one Gonzales frequented have taken moral relatvism to a new low. It's not enough for moral relativism to equate all cultures and their behaviors as morally equal. The philosophy is now at the point where ending one's life is morally equivalent to living one's life.
Should we be surprised that some people treat human life as just another consumable product? Should we really be surprised when some people treat suicide as another acceptable lifestyle choice? We're living in a culture that for 30 years has accepted the legalized killing of unborn children. We're at a point where new mothers and fathers receive little jail time for killing their newborns. A woman in New Jersey got only three years for killing her son.
This wanton disregard for human life will not end until we accept the basic humanity of all people regardless whether they're born or not. A place to start would be nixing Roe v. Wade.
"A Virtural Path to Suicide"
[Thanks to The Eye for the link.]
May 15, 2003
Five Years for Baby's Death
A child's life is worth only five years in jail. That's what Delilah Lark got for shaking her two month old to death. And if she would have had the baby killed two months earlier by abortion she wouldn't have gotten anything. Chalk up another win for the Culture of Death.
"Milwaukee Woman Sentenced For Killing Baby"