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WASHINGTON, D.C., March 12, 2021 (C-Fam) — It is clear to friend and foe alike that the new Biden administration intends to overturn the Helms Amendment that has blocked taxpayer funds for abortion for nearly half a century. The U.S. indicated this change in position in a submission to the UN’s Human Rights Council late last week, in which it declared “It is the policy of the U.S. to support women’s and girls’ sexual and reproductive health and rights in the U.S., as well as globally.”
That this is a new policy is indicated by how the issue was treated by previous administrations. In November, the U.S. took its turn to have its human rights record reviewed by the other nations of the world in a process known as the Universal Periodic Review (UPR).
In particular, the Netherlands urged the U.S. to “[r]epeal the Helms Amendment and the Protecting Life in Global Health Assistance Policy and, in the interim, allow United States foreign assistance to be used, at a minimum, for safe abortion in cases of rape, incest and life endangerment.”
At the meeting at the time, the U.S. under Trump pushed back on several mostly European countries’ recommendations to fund abortions overseas. And then two things happened. First, the election of Joe Biden as president and then the part of the UPR process where governments provide written responses. Whereas the Trump team verbally pushed back, the Biden team in its written and formal response agreed with the Europeans that international law requires the U.S. to strike down the Helms Amendment.
Specifically, the Biden administration “supported” the recommendation of the Netherlands, as well as others from Norway, Austria, and Canada that called for the removal of restrictions on funding for “sexual and reproductive health” services abroad. This was not only a reversal of the Trump administration’s policies, but also a significant change from the Obama administration’s handling of similar requests during the U.S.’s previous turns at the UPR in 2011 and 2015, which were “noted” despite the administration’s general pro-abortion position.
The Helms Amendment was passed by Congress and signed into law, and as such, President Biden cannot overturn it. In an introductory section, the U.S. acknowledges that some recommendations “request action not entirely within the power of our Federal Executive Branch” and stated, “[w]e support … these recommendations when we share their ideals, are making serious efforts to achieve their goals, and intend to continue doing so.”
However, Biden could potentially reinterpret Helms to include exceptions, as recommended by the Netherlands. The Obama administration had considered doing so, but refrained out of concern that protections for health workers’ conscience rights would have to be added.
In a worrying sign for conscience rights, the U.S. also supported a recommendation by Australia to “[e]nsure that laws permitting the refusal of care based on religious and moral beliefs do not restrict women’s sexual and reproductive health and rights.”
It remains to be seen what steps, if any, the Biden administration will take on the Helms Amendment, which is also facing new threats in the Democrat-controlled Congress. Meanwhile, international pro-life advocates may draw a small measure of comfort from the U.S.’s standard disclaimer to its UPR submission, which states that its responses should not be taken to mean that the U.S. regards every recommendation received as “subject to U.S. international human rights obligations.”
The so-called 'Equality Act' contains deadly poison for Christian democracy in the United States. And, its harmless-sounding name tries to hide this insidious reality.
But, unfortunately, Pelosi and company have JUST PASSED this morally repugnant bill in the US House of Representatives.
Pro-life and pro-family organizations, as well as Christian churches and the US Conference of Catholic Bishops, and freedom-loving groups everywhere, are now sounding the alarm.
Wake up, America, this is RED ALERT time!
This petition, therefore, calls on every US Senator to vigorously oppose and reject this bill.
Yes, it's THAT important.
The bill has nothing to do with "equality," or with extending the 1964 Civil Rights Act, which is how it is being touted by the leftists in the mainstream media.
It is, rather, one of the MOST EXTREME anti-life, pro-LGBT indoctrination bills ever proposed.
It has been described as a short-list of the worst possible elements of the Radical Left's agenda in Congress...and, REMEMBER, it has just passed the House!
We need to tell all US Senators, in no uncertain terms, that WE WILL NOT ACCEPT this outrageous attack on our freedoms and on life, itself!
SIGN AND SHARE THIS URGENT PETITION, TODAY!
And, after you have signed this petition, please CLICK HERE to DIRECTLY CONTACT YOUR U.S. SENATORS, and tell them to oppose this assault on our freedoms of thought, speech, conscience and religion.
FOR MORE INFORMATION:
Below are some of the devastating critiques of 'Equality Act,' leveled by some of the best conservative, Christian minds in the country.
Tony Perkins, president of the Family Research Council (FRC), has written that the 'Equality Act' will include, "the largest expansion of taxpayer-funded abortion this country has ever seen.”
"Under this big new umbrella of 'discrimination,'" continued Perkins, "any American who doesn’t want to fund, offer, perform, or participate in abortion on demand will have no real choice. They can conform — or they can be punished."
"Every wall that’s been built between abortion and the government would come crashing down, including the Hyde Amendment, the pro-conscience Weldon Amendment, and several international barriers that keep our country from exporting abortion."
ON CHRISTIANITY, RELIGIOUS FREEDOM and LGBT INDOCTRINATION:
Lloyd Marcus, of the American Thinker publication, has written about the 'Equality Act' in the following terms:
"LGBTQ enforcer and homosexual Democrat congressman David Cicilline is sponsor of the Equality Act. Cicilline's evil bill is the most aggressive assault on our constitutional religious liberties in U.S. history...If the Equality Act becomes the law of the land, every outrageous, tyrannical demand [of LGBTQ activists/enforcers] will become reality."
And, Liberty Counsel Action, a law and policy education, training and advocacy organization which, among other things, advances religious freedom, the sanctity of human life, and the family has extensively criticized the 'Equality Act'.
On their webpage, dedicated to analyzing the 'Equality Act', which you can access below, Liberty Counsel Action state: "The 'Equality' Act' elevates 'sexual orientation and gender identity' to the same protected category as race. It will violate the religious freedom of Americans in numerous ways."
The go on to list the areas of life which this will affect: "It will impact all employers, including religious and non-profit organizations; contractors; houses of worship; public, private, and religious schools; curriculum; bathrooms; sports; daycare providers; shelters; hospitals; places of gatherings; entertainment providers; counselors; foster care and adoption; biological parents; landlords; anywhere providing a “good, service, or program,” including those advertised online; transportation drivers; and all local, state, and federal entities and many other areas."
And, as they note: "[T]here is NO RELIGIOUS EXEMPTION to this bill!"
Taking into account all of these potential threats to Christian democracy, Life and religious freedom, it is easy to see how the so-called 'Equality Act' has been called a "poison pill."
It is imperative that the US Senate vigorously reject this bill, AND EXPOSE IT FOR WHAT IT REALLY IS.
Please SIGN this urgent petition, TODAY!
The following links will take you to more information about the 'Equality Act'
The House version of the so-called 'Equality Act' (HR 5): http://lc.org/PDFs/Attachments2PRsLAs/2019/031819EqualityActHR5.pdf
Liberty Counsel Action's full analysis of the so-called 'Equality Act': https://www.lcaction.org/HR5 and https://lc.org/newsroom/details/022421-equality-act-guts-religious-freedom-1
LifeSiteNews opinion and analysis of the so-called 'Equality Act':
Published with permission from C-Fam.