Hilary White

10,000 pro-lifers rally in Dublin amidst heated abortion debate

Hilary White
Hilary White
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DUBLIN, December 5, 2012 (LifeSiteNews.com) – Over 10,000 gathered outside Ireland’s parliament this week to demand that Prime Minister Enda Kenny keep his campaign promise of 2011 not to bring legalized abortion into the Republic. The crowd included five Catholic bishops, and was organized by a united effort of all of Ireland’s pro-life organizations.

The thousands, chanting “Keep your promise!”, packed Molesworth Street in central Dublin, holding placards urging the government to protect both mother and baby. The crowd was addressed by Niamh Ui Bhrian and Dr. Sean O’Domhnaill of the Life Institute, and Caroline Simons of the Pro-Life Campaign, who said that the politicians would face a massive public backlash if they attempted to overturn the country’s constitutional protections for the unborn.

After several weeks of misinformation in the mainstream media over the death of Savita Halappanavar, Ui Bhrian said, “Clarity is now coming back to the debate following the hysteria whipped up by abortion campaigners after Savita’s tragic death.”

“The pro-life majority will want to ensure that Fine Gael does not move to legislate on the X case.”

Pro-Life Campaign legal adviser, Caroline Simons, said, “The way in which the debate is being stage-managed and railroaded through the Dail is deeply disturbing and undemocratic.”

“Women deserve better than this. So do unborn babies,” she added. The rally, she said, sent a message that “there is nothing liberal or compassionate about abortion.”

The Life Institute is preparing to follow the rally with a massive, nationwide campaign that includes getting 1.4 million leaflets into every household in the country warning that Kenny and the Coalition are preparing to “open the door” to abortion on demand, and that promises of “limitations” are nonsense.

“Everybody in the country is going to get a message. Kenny is going to get the message,” Ui Bhrian told LifeSiteNews.com. 

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The rally was held in response to threats by the coalition government to bring forward legislation to allow abortion. Since the ruling in 2010 by the European Court of Human Rights on the A,B& C case, Irish politicians are said to have been in a state of chaos over abortion, with pressure from the global abortion lobby on one side, particularly at the European Union, and a public that opposes liberalization of the law on the other. Although the ECHR ruling specifically said that the country is not under an obligation to legalize abortion, this has not stopped abortion lobbyists in the Dail, largely from Labour Party coalition partners, from insisting that the government legislate to allow abortion in “limited” circumstances. The media’s treatment of the death of Savita Halappanavar has only increased the pressure, leading to promises to bring in legislation before Christmas.

In the Dail, James Reilly, Minister for Health, spoke of the coalition’s “firm commitment to implement the judgment of the European Court of Human Rights in the A, B and C v Ireland case and bring the required legal clarity to the issue of lawful abortion in Ireland.”

But, he said “that does not mean abortion on demand.” “We must protect the life of the pregnant mother and yet vindicate the right of the unborn child.”

Simons and other pro-life leaders are adamant, however, that the government’s promises of “limited” abortion are meaningless. “Once the principle is conceded that every human life has an inherent unrepeatable value, there is no going back. What has happened in other countries proves that there is no such thing as restrictive abortion,” Simons said.

“In Britain, abortion was introduced on narrow grounds, but is now legal up to birth. Babies who survive the abortion procedure and can breathe unaided are simply left to die. Just last week it was reported in Canada that 491 babies who survived abortion between 2000 and 2009 were left in a corner to die after receiving no medical care or attention.

“That is the true barbaric picture of legalised abortion,” she said.

Niamh Ui Bhrian told LSN that the rally was just the start of a campaign to reverse the work of the media propagandists. “For the last three weeks people have had this non-stop propaganda,” saying that the pro-life laws threaten women’s lives, that they need legalised abortion to be safe. This, she said, is “absurd” given the rating of Ireland by the World Health Organisation as number two in the world for maternal health with those laws in place.

Pro-life people are fed up with the propaganda, she said, “they needed to come out in massive numbers and tell the government to keep their promise.

“They said, ‘Don’t you dare rush this through before Christmas’. It’s the people who are sovereign, the people who make the decision, not the European court and not the abortion lobbying media.”

“And getting ten thousand on a Tuesday afternoon in December is going to send a message,” she added. “Traffic was stopped and the streets were filled.” Politicians are in a state of panic, she said, and are “speaking out of both sides of their mouths.”

“What the pro-life movement needs to do is make the government realise that once people know that all the pro abortion hysteria isn’t true they are going to be clamouring against any threat to Ireland’s pro-life laws.”

The government is “rushing to get make a decision to abortion before Christmas to take advantage of the hysteria and confusion raised by the media’s duplicitous and manipulative coverage of the Savita case.”


To send a message to Prime Minister Enda Kenny
Taoiseach’s Private Office
e-mail:taoiseach@taoiseach.gov.ie
Phone: 01-6194020 / 4021 / 4043
Fax:    01-6764048

To send a message to Justice Minister Alan Shatter
alan.shatter@oireachtas.ie

YouTube rally video

 

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A Planned Parenthood facility in Denver, Colorado
Dustin Siggins Dustin Siggins Follow Dustin

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Colorado judge tosses suit alleging Planned Parenthood used state funds to pay for abortions

Dustin Siggins Dustin Siggins Follow Dustin
By Dustin Siggins

Alliance Defending Freedom "will likely appeal" a Monday court decision dismissing their suit alleging Planned Parenthood of the Rocky Mountains illegally used state funds to pay for abortions, an ADF lawyer told LifeSiteNews.

The ADF lawsuit claims that $1.4 million went from state government agencies to a Planned Parenthood abortion affiliate through Planned Parenthood of the Rocky Mountains.

Denver County District Court Judge Andrew McCallin dismissed the case on the basis that ADF could not prove the funds paid for abortions. But ADF maintains that funding an abortion facility is indirectly paying for abortions, which violates state law.

ADF senior counsel Michael Norton -- whose wife, former Colorado Lieutenant Governor Jane Norton, filed the lawsuit – told LifeSiteNews that "no one is above the law, including Colorado politicians who are violating our state’s constitution by continuing to fund Planned Parenthood’s abortion business with state taxpayer dollars."

"The State of Colorado even acknowledges that about $1.4 million of state taxpayer dollars flowed from Colorado government agencies through Planned Parenthood to its abortion affiliate. The Denver court seems to have agreed with that fact and yet granted motions to dismiss based on a technicality," said Norton.

According to Colorado law, "no public funds shall be used by the State of Colorado, its agencies or political subdivisions to pay or otherwise reimburse, either directly or indirectly, any person, agency or facility for the performance of any induced abortion." There is a stipulation that allows for "the General Assembly, by specific bill, [to] authorize and appropriate funds to be used for those medical services necessary to prevent the death of either a pregnant woman or her unborn child under circumstances where every reasonable effort is made to preserve the life of each."

According to court documents, the Colorado law was affirmed by state voters in 1984, with an appeal attempt rejected two years later. In 2001, an outside legal firm hired by Jane Norton -- who was lieutenant governor at the time -- found that Planned Parenthood was "subsidizing rent" and otherwise providing financial assistance to Planned Parenthood Services Corporation, an abortion affiliate. After the report came out, and Planned Parenthood refused to disassociate itself from the abortion affiliate, the state government stopped funding Planned Parenthood.

Since 2009, however, that has changed, which is why the lawsuit is filed against Planned Parenthood, and multiple government officials, including Democratic Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper.

According to ADF legal counsel Natalie Decker, the fact that Planned Parenthood sent funds to the abortion affiliate should have convinced McCallin of the merits of the case. "The State of Colorado and the Denver court acknowledged that about $1.4 million of state taxpayer dollars, in addition to millions of 'federal' tax dollars, flowed from Colorado government agencies through Planned Parenthood to its abortion affiliate," said Decker.

Click "like" if you are PRO-LIFE!

"Without even having the facts of the case developed, the Denver court seems to have granted motions to dismiss filed by the State of Colorado and Planned Parenthood on grounds the term 'indirectly' could not mean what Ms. Norton and Governor Owens said it meant in 2002 when they defunded Planned Parenthood."

"That, of course, is the plain meaning of Colo. Const., Art. V, § 50 which was implemented by the citizens of Colorado, and the reason for Ms. Norton’s lawsuit."

Decker told LifeSiteNews that "Colorado law is very clear," and that the state law "prohibits Colorado tax dollars from being used to directly or indirectly pay for induced abortions."

She says her client "has been denied the opportunity to fully develop the facts of the case and demonstrate exactly what the Colorado tax dollars have been used for." Similarly, says Decker, it is not known "exactly what those funds were used for. At this time, there is simply no way to conclude that tax dollars have not been used to directly pay for abortions or abortion inducing drugs and devices."

"What we do know is that millions of Colorado tax dollars have flowed through Planned Parenthood to its abortion affiliate, which leads to the inescapable conclusion that those tax dollars are being used to indirectly pay for abortions."

A spokesperson for Planned Parenthood of the Rocky Mountains did not return multiple requests for comment about the lawsuit.

The dismissal comes as Planned Parenthood fights an investigation by the state's Republican attorney general over a video by Live Action, as well as a lawsuit by a mother whose 13-year old daughter had an abortion in 2012 that she alleges was covered up by Planned Parenthood. The girl, who was being abused by her stepfather, was abused for months after the abortion.

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Courtesy of Online for Life
Steve Weatherbe

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Fledgling high-tech pro-life group marks 2,000 babies saved: 2-3 saved per day

Steve Weatherbe
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Online for Life, the Dallas-based pro-life marketing agency, saved its two-thousandth unborn baby earlier this year and is well on its way to saving its three thousandth by 2015.

“We are getting better all the time at what we do,” says founder Brian Fisher. “It used to be one baby saved every four to six weeks and now its two or three a day.”

But the most significant save? “It was the very first one,” he says, recalling the phone call from a crisis centre a month after OFL’s 2012 startup.  “And for me personally it was just a massive turning point … because [of] all the work and the money and testing and the volunteers and everything that led up to that moment. All the frustration of that was washed away in an instant because a child had been rescued that was about to be killed.”

Though increasing market savvy has led Online for Life to expand offline, the core of the non-profit, donor-financed operation remains SEO -- search engine optimization -- targeting young women who have just discovered they are pregnant and gone onto the Web to find the nearest abortion clinic.

Instead, they find the nearest crisis pregnancy center at the top of their results page. Since OFL went online it has linked with a network of 41 such centers, including two of its own it started this year, in a positive feedback loop that reinforces effective messaging first at the level of the Web, then at the first telephone call between the clinic and the pregnant woman, and finally at the first face-to-face meeting.

“Testing is crucial,” says Fisher. “We test everything we do.” Early on, Online for Life insisted the clinics it served have an ultrasound machine, because the prevailing wisdom in the prolife movement was that “once they saw their baby on ultrasound, they would drop the idea of having an abortion.” While the organization still insists on the ultrasound, its own testing and feedback from the CPCs indicates that three quarters of the women they see already have children. “They’ve already seen their own children on ultrasound and are still planning to abort.” So ultrasound images have lost their punch.

OFL has had to move offline to reach a significant minority who have neither computers, tablets, or cell phones.  Traditional electronic media spots as well as bus ads and billboards carry the message to them.

As well, says Fisher, “unwanted pregnancy used to be a high-school age problem; now that’s gone down in numbers and the average age of women seeking abortion has gone up to 24.” By that age, he says, they are “thoroughly conditioned by the abortion culture. Even before they got pregnant, they have already decided they would have an abortion if they did get pregnant.”

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What they need—and fast, in the first two minutes of the first phone call—is sympathy, support, and a complete absence of judgement. Online for Life is always gathering information from its network on what responses are most effective—and this can vary city to city. The organization offers training to clinic volunteers and staff that stresses a thorough knowledge of the services on tap. “Any major city has all sorts of services—housing, education, health—available,” says Fisher.

The problem that OFL was designed to address was the crisis pregnancy centers’ market penetration. Three percent of women with unwanted pregnancies were reaching out to the CPCs, and seven per cent of those who did reach out were having their babies. “So about 2.1 children were being saved for every 1,000 unwanted pregnancies,” says Fisher. “That’s not nearly enough.”

So Fisher and two fellow volunteers dreamed of applying online marketing techniques to the problem in 2009. Three years later Fisher was ready to leave his executive position at an online marketing agency to go full-time with the life-saving agency. Now they have 63 employees, most of them devoted to optimizing the penetration in each of the markets served by their participating crisis centers.

The results speak for themselves. Where OFL has applied its techniques, especially with its own clinics, as many as 15-18 percent of the targeted population of women seeking abortions get directed to nearby crisis pregnancy centers. “It depends on the centres’ budgets and on how many volunteers they have to be on the phones through the day and night,” he says. “But we are going to push it higher. We hope to save our 2,500th child by the end of the year.”

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Shock: UK mom abandons disabled daughter, keeps healthy son after twin surrogacy

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By Pete Baklinski

A UK woman who is the biological mother of twins born from a surrogate mom, has allegedly abandoned one of the children because she was born with a severe muscular condition, while taking the girl's healthy sibling home with her.

The surrogate mother, also from the UK — referred to as "Jenny" to protect her identity — revealed to The Sun the phone conversation that took place between herself and the biological mother over the fate of the disabled girl.

“I remember her saying to me, “She’d be a f****** dribbling cabbage! Who would want to adopt her? No one would want to adopt a disabled child,’” she said.

Jenny, who has children of her own, said she decided to become a surrogate to “help a mother who couldn’t have children.” She agreed to have two embryos implanted in her womb and to give birth for £12,000 ($20,000 USD).

With just six weeks to the due date, doctors told Jenny she needed an emergency caesarean to save the babies. It was not until a few weeks after the premature births that the twin girl was diagnosed with congenital myotonic dystrophy.

When Jenny phoned the biological mother to tell her of the girl’s condition, the mother rejected the girl.

Jenny has decided along with her partner to raise the girl. They have called her Amy.

“I was stunned when I heard her reject Amy,” Jenny said. “She had basically told me that she didn’t want a disabled child.”

Jenny said she felt “very angry” towards the girl’s biological parents. "I hate them for what they did.”

The twins are now legally separated. A Children and Family Court has awarded the healthy boy to the biological mother and the disabled girl to her surrogate.

The story comes about two weeks after an Australian couple allegedly abandoned their surrogate son in Thailand after he was born with Down syndrome, while taking the healthy twin girl back with them to Australia.

Rickard Newman, director of Family Life, Pro-Life & Child and Youth Protection in the Diocese of Lake Charles, called the Australian story a “tragedy” that “results from a marketplace that buys and sells children.”

“Third-party reproduction is a prism for violations against humanity. IVF and the sperm trade launched a wicked industry that now includes abortion, eugenics, human trafficking, and deliberate family fragmentation,” he said. 

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