Ben Johnson

‘I entered a sanctuary’: Woman who posted pictures of her abortion speaks

Ben Johnson
Ben Johnson

LONDON, July 9, 2012, (LifeSiteNews.com) – Before and after pictures often inspire thoughts of accomplishment, but a series of pictures a woman posted online of an empty jar that gradually filled with the shredded corpse of her unborn child has elicited feelings of sorrow, pity, revulsion, and – for an abortion survivor – acute memories of a haunted past.

“Jane Young” said she posted images of her 2011 abortion on her website, ThisIsMyAbortion.com, “to counter the perverse use of dead fetus images used by the anti-abortion movement.”

The anonymous woman, whose mother had an illegal abortion 30 years earlier, first encountered “horrific graphic images” of aborted babies while accompanying a friend to an abortion clinic. A year later, she visited the facility herself.

En route to her own appointment, she said she felt threatened by pro-life protesters holding “religious paraphernalia” and noted the “security risk” pro-life demonstrators posed to “abortion caregivers.”

After stepping inside the abortion mill, she wrote in an article published in The Guardian, “I entered a sanctuary” where “my psyche [was] held by empathetic professionals.”

Click “like” if you want to end abortion!

During the procedure, she snapped pictures of an empty jar that would eventually fill with the suctioned remains of her unborn child. “At 6 weeks of pregnancy, my abortion looked very different than the images I saw when I entered the clinic that day,” she wrote.

Pointing to her picture, Young claimed pro-lifers’ “heartless use of lifeless fetus images” was “just propaganda…being used as a weapon” to leave the public “cheated, lied to and manipulated.” 

However, some say it is the anonymous photographer who is misleading the public.

“Yes, a young baby murdered by suction abortion will look very different than an older baby murdered by a D&C, RU-486, D&E, or induced labor abortion,” wrote Jill Stanek on her website.

“I am still overwhelmed with sadness looking at that jar of bloody pulp,” Stanek wrote. “Jane’s dead baby is in there, even if unrecognizable.”

Graphic depictions of certain kinds of abortions have proven effective in changing minds and hearts in the struggle for life. Fr. Frank Pavone says visitors to the Priests for Life website have told him those searing images forced them to face the consequences of abortion. One female visitor simply wrote, “Thank you for showing me the truth.”

But Young considers her photos a call-to-arms. She told Jessica Gottlieb of Village Voice, “we still have to dig in the trenches as women to fight for the right to choose…We must continue to demand rights for ourselves and for the future generations of men and women alike.”

Young’s own graphic images have won her effusive plaudits. A woman named Chelsea wrote on Young’s website, “You f—-ing rock for this. Absolutely brilliant.”

Many commenters shared stories of what Young called “courageous” abortions. Sarahj wrote that after her abortion, “I bled for a long time, but I was told that was normal.” She believes her decision “was the best choice for the potential ‘child.’”

A supporter named Katie said, “I had major complications the next day and actually had to be rushed back to have another procedure done. I am now unable to have children but luckily for me my husband who was adopted doesn’t want biological children…It was MY decision to have an abortion..no one else’s. I am the one who has to live with that.”

Not all shared Young’s enthusiasm for abortion. A “Tara T” wrote that having an abortion at 10 weeks “devastated me. It wasn’t the protesters – there were none there at the time – it was the feeling I got inside of me as I realized this man was vacuuming my baby out of me and putting its parts in a jar.”

“Now I want kids and can’t have them because I developed a bad infection after the abortion,” she wrote. “There’s more to it than both sides are willing to see…..WAY more.”

ThisMyAbortion.com appeared shortly after a website xoJane.com asked post-abortive women to share their happy abortion stories, and follows a trickle of similar articles. 

In March, Amanda Chatel, a self-described “selfish” New York writer, called her abortion “the best decision of my life.” She added that she prefers the companionship of her Jack Russell terrier to motherhood. 

In April, Susan Heath wrote in the New York Times that she had “felt only gratitude and relief” after having her abortion. 

Sarah Tuttle-Singer then wrote of “years of pain” that followed “My Jewish Abortion.” Nonetheless, she continues to support abortion-on-demand. 

A more prominent post-abortive feminist, The Daily Show co-creator Lizz Winstead, now performs one-woman Planned Parenthood benefits, in which she thanks those who ended her own child’s life and mocks the work of crisis pregnancy centers. 

As for Jane Young, “So far, I have not regretted having my abortion or sharing these photographs,” she wrote. “I don’t think that I will.”

 

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Lisa Bourne

‘You can’t have’ marriage equality ‘without polygamy’

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By Lisa Bourne

July 3, 2015 (LifeSiteNews) – Motivated by the U.S. Supreme Court ruling legalizing homosexual “marriage,” a Montana polygamist has filed for a second marriage license, so he can be legally wed to two women at once.

"It's about marriage equality," said Nathan Collier, using homosexual advocates’ term to support marriage redefinition. "You can't have this without polygamy."

Collier, who has has appeared on the TLC reality show Sister Wives with his legal wife Victoria, and his second wife Christine, said he was inspired by the dissent in the Supreme Court decision.

The minority Supreme Court justices said in Friday’s ruling it would open the door to both polygamy and religious persecution.

“It is striking how much of the majority’s reasoning would apply with equal force to the claim of a fundamental right to plural marriage,” wrote Chief Justice John Roberts.

Collier and his wives applied for a second marriage license earlier this week at the Yellowstone County Courthouse in Billings, a report from the Salt Lake Tribune said.

Collier, who was excommunicated from the Mormon Church for polygamy, married Victoria in 2000 and had a religious wedding ceremony with Christine in 2007. The three have seven children between them and from previous relationships.

"My second wife Christine, who I'm not legally married to, she's put up with my crap for a lot of years. She deserves legitimacy," Collier said.

Yellowstone County officials initially denied the application before saying they would consult with the County Attorney and get him a final answer.

Click "like" if you want to defend true marriage.

Bigamy, the holding of multiple marriage licenses, is illegal all 50 states, but Collier plans to sue if his application is denied. Officials expect to have an answer for him next week.

While homosexual “marriage” supporters have long insisted legalization of same-sex unions would not lead to polygamy, pro-life and family advocates have warned all along it would be inevitable with the redefinition of marriage.

“The next court cases coming will push for polygamy, as Chief Justice John Roberts acknowledged in his dissent,” said Penny Nance, president of Concerned Women for America, after the Supreme Court ruling. “The chief justice said “the argument for polygamy is actually stronger than that for ‘gay marriage.’ It’s only a matter of time.”

In a piece from the Washington Times, LifeSiteNews Editor-in-Chief and the co-founder of Voice of the Family John-Henry Westen stated the move toward legal polygamy is “just the next step in unraveling how Americans view marriage.”

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Chris Christie: Clerks must perform same-sex ‘marriages’ regardless of their religious beliefs

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By Ben Johnson

TRENTON, NJ, July 3, 2015 (LifeSiteNews) – Chris Christie is not known for nuance. This time, he has turned his fiery personality loose on county clerks and other officials who have religious objections to performing same-sex “marriages.”

In a tone usually reserved for busting teachers' unions, Christie told clerks who hold traditional values, “You took the job, and you took the oath.” He would offer no exemption for an individual whose conscience would not allow him to participate in a union the vast majority of the world's religions deem sinful.

“When you go back and re-read the oath it doesn’t give you an out. You have to do it,” he said.

He told a reporter that there “might” be “individual circumstances” that “merit some examination, but none that come immediately to mind for me.”

“I think for folks who are in the government world, they kind of have to do their job, whether you agree with the law or you don’t,” the pugnacious governor said.

Since the Supreme Court voted 5-4 to legalize homosexual “marriage” last Friday, elected officials have grappled with how to safeguard the rights of those who have deeply held religious beliefs that would not allow them to participate in such a ceremony.

Christie's response differs markedly from other GOP hopefuls' responses to the Supreme Court ruling. Mike Huckabee, for instance, has specifically said that clerks should have conscience rights. Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal signed an executive order granting such rights and ordered clerks to wait until a pending court case was fully adjudicated before any clerk issues a marriage license to a homosexual couple.

Christie gave up a legal appeal after a superior court judge struck down his state's voter-approved constitutional marriage protection amendment. New Jersey is the only state where such a low court overturned the will of the voters.

The decision to ignore conscience rights adds to the growing number of Christie's positions that give conservatives pause.

The natural locus of support for a Christie 2016 presidential run is the Republican's socially liberal donor class, for personal as well as political reasons. His wife works on Wall Street, and some of the GOP's high-dollar donors – including Paul Singer – have courted Christie for years.

However, this year Jeb Bush, Marco Rubio, and to a lesser degree Scott Walker have eclipsed Christie as the preferred candidates of the boardroom donors – who sometimes prefer Democrats to Republicans.

Christie also used language during a speech before the Republican Jewish Coalition last year, which concerned some major GOP donors.

Christie is reportedly spending this weekend with Mitt Romney and his family at Romney's New Hampshire home. Romney declined to enter the 2016 race himself and may be able to open his donor list to Christie's struggling campaign.

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After having a girl with Down syndrome, this couple adopted two more

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By Ben Johnson

LINO LAKE, MN, July 3, 2015 (LifeSiteNews) – For most people, having five biological children would have been enough. In fact, for many Americans, large families are treated as a scandal or a burden.

But one family made the decision, not just to have a large family, but to give a home to some of the most vulnerable children in the world: Girls born overseas with Down syndrome.

Lee and Karen Shervheim love all seven of their children, biological or otherwise. Undeterred by having twin boys – Daniel and Andrew, 18 – they had Sam four years later.

They now have three daughters who are all 11 years old. All three have Down syndrome.

And two of them are adopted.

About the time their eight-year-old son, David, was born, Lee and Karen decided to adopt a child with Down syndrome to be a companion to their daughter, Annie.

They made the further unexpected choice to adopt a child from Eastern Europe with the help of Reece's Rainbow, which helps parents adopt children with Down syndrome.

“Between my wife and I, we couldn’t get it out of our heads,” Lee told the Quad City Press. “So many children need families and we knew we could potentially do something about it.”

After originally deciding to adopt Katie, they spent six weeks in Kiev, visiting an orphanage in nearby Kharkov. While there, they decided they may have room in their heart, and their home, for another child.

When they saw a picture of Emie striking the same pose as their biological daughter in one of their photographs, they knew they would come home with two children.

Both girls were the same age as their Annie. She would not lack for companionship, as they worried.

Lee said after the Ukrainian government – finally – completed the paperwork, they returned to the United States, when the real challenges began.

“The unvarnished truth,” Lee told the Press, is that adopting the Russian-speaking special needs children “was really disruptive to our family. They came with so many issues that we had not anticipated.”

After teaching them sign language and appropriate behavior, they moved to Lino Lake, Minnesota and found a new support group in Eagle Brook Church. There they found personal assistance and spiritual solace.

Every year in the past seven years has been better and better, they say.

“I think my girls can do almost anything they want to do,” he said, “and that’s what I want to help them become.”

The family's devotion is fueled by their faith, and it informs the sense of humor Lee showed in a tweet during the 2014 midterm elections:

It takes a special person to believe in the potential of the “mentally retarded,” as they were once labeled. Today, 90 percent of all babies diagnosed with Down syndrome in the womb will be aborted. The percentage is higher in some countries. Some have even spoken of "a world without people with Down syndrome."

Their God, and their experience, tell them that every child has infinite worth and potential, Lee told local media, and he would encourage anyone to follow his footsteps and adopt a Down syndrome child – or two.

“The message is that it really doesn’t matter where you started or where you came from,” Lee said. “There are endless opportunities for everyone, whether they have disabilities or not. They deserve a shot.”

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