Rochester Area Right To Life
LifeLines is the newsletter of the Rochester Area Right to Life Committee, Inc., Education Fund. Older, complete issues in print are available in the Rochester office. These articles have been selected from the issue in print. An index for this issue and previous issues for the last couple of years is available.
Volume 29; Issue 8, June, 2001
Information and news you can use to protect and defend lives threatened by abortion and euthanasia
At this time, the numerous gifts received from fathers,
birth or adoptive, are recognized with prayer and heartfelt wish:
HAPPY FATHERS DAY
Actions to continuously provide love, support, encouragement and limits as required,
Trust in the presence and support of the Creator to provide needed wisdom and perseverance,
Heart and home always open to family in times of joy, stress or need,
Enjoyment of the countless hours of uniquely sharing life as a family,
Recognition, appreciation, and respect throughout life as thanks for all youve given to your children.
Note to fathers and families
Fatherhood, as motherhood, has many uncertainties. Pregnancy, whether by choice or health issues, does not always end with a childs birth. Also unpredictable are the years of life parents and children will share on earth. The Leave it to Beaver TV show with the two parents, two children living together in one home is no longer the "typical" life style. 2000 Census figures show 52% of families in the U.S. have 1 parent, most often the mother. Nevertheless, fathers remain significant in both traditional as well as extended families.
Fathers Day, 2001, can be a day for all people to remember fathers in prayer. Our prayers may reflect gratitude for wonderful fathers or requests for help for men who have been weak fathers. Even "unknown" fathers can be remembered. There is a unique group of men who, although fathers, were cut off from their children through a womans "choice" of abortion.
They may or may not have known of the pregnancy, supported or opposed the abortion "choice" or decided to deny being a parent. Prayers for them on Fathers Day, June 17th, are very appropriate. There is increasing recognition of men as the 3rd victim of abortion. There is help for them. RARTL highly recommends:
Mens Abortion Recovery: (610) 384-3210 and/or Fathers & Brothers: (303) 494-3282
theLeo Holmsten Human Life Award will be presented on Tuesday, September 25,, 2001, at the Presentation Banquet at the Crowne Plaza Hotel Ballroom.
Potential vs. Actual
In Roe v Wade the U.S. Supreme Court said that the fetus is potential life and life does not begin until birth. Logically, a thing cannot be actually and potentially the same thing at the same time. These days, 28 years after the decision in Roe v Wade science has proven beyond a doubt, e.g. ultrasounds, fetal surgery, that the fetus is alive. If the fetus is alive, it cannot be only potentially alive. A fetus/embryo should never be referenced as "potential life". He/she is actually alive.
Additional examples illustrate this principle. Water is composed of hydrogen and oxygen. Kept separately, they are actually hydrogen and actually oxygen. True, they are potentially water, if combined. When combined in the right proportions, they become actual water and the two elements no longer have the "potential" to become water. In turn, water has the potential, when mixed with other elements, to become other products. Until the mix occurs, it remains actual water only.
Look at Life
A mans sperm, composed of 23 chromosomes, is actually only a sperm. A womans egg, composed of 23 chromosomes, is actually only an egg. Before being combined, they are potentially a new being. If they do not combine, they each die. When combined the sperm and egg together represent 46 chromosomes, the normal complement of a human being. The sperm and the egg are each no longer a potential human being because they have joined to become one actual human being.
From the moment of fertilization the fertilized cell, i.e. human being, divides and reproduces itself billions of times over its lifespan. After about the first week, the human being attaches him/herself to the mothers womb and development continues rapidly. If development is not impeded, the embryo becomes a fetus, infant, toddler, adolescent, adult and finally an old person. There is no point after fertilization when it can be said that the basic nature of the original being has changed. You are the same person you were one day after fertilization. Only your size, and after 9 months, your address changed
Thousands of frozen embryos wait for parental decision about their futures. Use of their stem cells for treatments with unproven results is medically and morally unjustifiable. Excerpts from Family Observer 4/29/01
Adoption program for "unused" frozen embryos
For in vitro fertilization usage, numerous embryos are created for choice and backup. Those created but unused remain frozen, likely to be ultimately used for research or thrown away.
Snowflakes Embryo Adoption Program enables couples to choose adoption for their pre-born children and obtain many of the same legal and emotional safeguards offered in traditional adoptions.
The genetic parents of the "frozen human embryo," i.e. pre-born child, have control over who adopts their child and assurance that the adopting couple has been checked for criminal history or child abuse record and educated about parenting an adoptee. They can also specify age, religion and years of marriage. According to CNSNEWS, since the program began, 30 genetic families have been matched with 22 adopting families resulting in 7 babies born into the world.
Snowflakes is a project of the California-based Nightlight Christian Adoption Agency and considers each embryo o be "fragile, unique and the most beautiful of Gods creations." http://headlines.agape.org/archive/5/172001g.asp
The decision in Britain to permit use of embryonic tissue for stem cell research drew German doctors into discussion of their philosophy.
Germany is haunted by memories of the Nazi bid to create a "master race" and the murder of the handicapped and others whose genes were considered worthless. Now it is home to some of the strongest resistance to embryo research in Europe. The British Parliaments vote to allow parts of human embryos to be used in developing new medical treatments was condemned across Germany.
Destruction of an embryo to get
stem cells is assault and battery;
Stem cell research is the essential first step in cloning.
See NRLC Resolution on Human Cloning
Germany is in a debate about biotechnology. President Johannes Rau and Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder disagree on basic philosophies. President Rau had called for limits to be set on biotechnology for moral reasons.
Chancellor Schroeder said the debate did not take "the economic dimension enough into account" and that it was "also our moral responsibility to take care of our jobs and well-being." He defended the morality of experimenting on embryos if this helped science to progress and to save lives. He said more than 20% of European biotechnology firms are German and that activity had jumped 30% in that sector to currently account for 11,000 jobs.
President Rau countered that biotechnology cannot be justified by saying it creates jobs. "Economic interests are legitimate. But they can go against human dignity and the protection of life. What is ethically defensible cannot be allowed for economic reasons," Rau said.
Despite Chancellor Schroeders apparent support for embryonic research, he also said the current law banning the practice was "a good law and we have every reason to leave it as it is for now." He named an ethics council to examine the issue and eventually make recommendations.
On May 23rd, a congress of German doctors rejected the use of embryos for genetic research as "ethically unacceptable." The 250 doctors also voiced their opposition to euthanasia which became legal in the Netherlands in April 2001. Their statement said:
|"To kill on order is not a medical practice."|
The delegates, representing Germanys 370,000 doctors, voted not to soften the 1990 law that bans embryo research in Germany. They said importing embryos for research would be "ethically unacceptable." They also pleaded for clear rules for matters such as pre-implantation diagnosis, which allows for testing for disease before implanting a fertilized egg in a womans uterus. firstname.lastname@example.org; 5/24/01
Joseph E. Robach
New York State Assemblyman
who will be given the Leo Holmsten Human Life Award on Tuesday, September 25, 2001 at the Presentation Banquet sponsored by Rochester Area Right to Life Committee, Inc. Education Fund with cosponsors: Birthright of Rochester, Inc. St. Thomas More Lawyers Guild Crisis Pregnancy Services; Project Rachel; Problem Pregnancy Help Center; St. Luke Medical Association; Feminists for Life; Greater Rochester Association of Evangelicals; Roman Catholic Diocese of Rochester; Roberts Wesleyan College; Pro-life Planning Committee. Event and ticket information coming July 25th.
The forgotten victims of rape
Jennifer Bowman is slim and smiling, with three beautiful children. You wouldnt know by looking at her that she is somebody who has some unusual connections with rape. She says that there are victims of rape and there are forgotten victims of rape. She has set up a web site as a refuge and support for what she calls the forgotten victims of rape, the children who result from the act of rape. She is one of them, a child conceived in rape.
Adopted as an infant, she says she has had problems with self-esteem since learning at the age of eighteen that she was conceived in rape. She says, if your father did such a terrible, disgusting act and you resulted from that act, how can you be worth anything? What a stigma.
At eighteen, with the blessings of her adoptive parents, she had begun a search for her birth mother. Thats when she found out that she was a child of rape. It was in some of the adoption papers. "It was a shock," she says. "It made me all the more determined to find my mother so she could tell me it was a mistake. But it wasnt."
She and her mother were happy to find each other. Jennifer is grateful for her mothers welcoming warmth. She is amazed at all the help her mother has given her in trying to research her roots. She says, "It speaks volumes about my mothers character that she will help me so actively with this. Shes just wonderful."
Jennifer is definitely pro-life. We asked her about the popular opinion that rape victims should be given abortions, that its the kindest thing to do for the baby. Jennifers reply was adamant. She doesnt think anybody should have had the right to kill her as a fetus. "Its like a mercy killing. I dont want people who are not in my circumstances making decisions for me.
Looking at the life she has now, she doesnt think that anybody should pass judgment on her quality of life. "I wish people would stop equating us to the act that brought us here."
Society doesnt know how to deal with children who are the result of rape. The mixed messages that Jennifer gets would confuse anybody. One lady, for instance, made some terribly derogatory comments about the children of rape, saying that those babies absolutely should be aborted. Finally, Jennifer said, "Excuse me, but Im one of those children." The woman immediately said, "Oh, but that has no bearing on you."
Jennifers struggle with those mixed messages has led her to set up a website for people like herself, people who are children of rape. She says, "Theres comfort in numbers. I felt that I was alone, that I was strange in some way. I wanted to have this website so people would have a place to go." Her website, www.stigmatized.org, is intended for those struggling with the problem. If you see yourself in this article, go to the website and sign up (and wait patiently) for access.
And for the rest of us, we can remember that people like Jennifer dont wear a sign that says, "I was conceived in rape." So we may not be able to help a lot. We may not ever know that we could have told them about Jennifers website. But we can make sure that in our conversations we do not equate "the forgotten victims of rape" with the act that brought them here.
We can instead reaffirm the basic value of every human being and their right to live. We can work to protect innocent human life from conception to natural death.
Source: Bowman meeting with A. LeBlanc; For any questions, or a physical address for the organization, please call the office.
| "When one must, one can"
|We cannot do everything at once, but we can do something at once. Calvin Coolidge.|
Euthanasia - France likely to follow Netherlands
One week after the Netherlands made euthanasia legal, Bernard Koucher, M.D, Frances health minister said he would press for euthanasia being made legal in France.
He said that he would open a debate and visit the Netherlands to gain information on the Dutch policy that allows both assisted suicide and euthanasia.
"Theres an unquestionable change in French public opinion. We have to adapt and try to behave in a more humane manner in cases of such difficulty," Koucher said. He continued: "Its time to debate the issue openly, without arrogance, preconceived ideas or ideological rhetoric."
A survey of 950 adults, published on April 15th, showed 38% of French people absolutely in favor of euthanasia in cases of unbearable suffering or terminal disease. The survey results also showed that another 50% would allow doctors to bring life to an end in certain cases. Just 10% were opposed and only 2% declined to express a view.
Dr. Koucher conceded the final decision to end a life was traumatic "Things are not so simple. Theres always hope in the eyes of a sick person and thats where it is difficult to bring life to an end." Nevertheless, Koucher said that there were and always would be cases when there had to be an alternative to unending pain and misery.
Dr. Koucher, co-founder of the medical aid charity Medecins Sans Frontieres , (Doctors Without Borders), returned to French government work in February 2001 after serving as U.N. Administrator in Kosovo. He spoke of believing that palliative care does not "solve all the problems." He also announced his plans for a debate at the health ministry. Reuters; 4/16/01; The Pro-Life Infonet; 4-17-01
Floating assisted suicide and abortion clinics planned
An Australian doctor unveiled plans for the worlds first floating euthanasia clinic. It would be anchored off the Australian coast and administer lethal injections or drug dosages to terminally ill patients wishing to die.
Euthanasia and assisted suicide are illegal in Australia. That wont stop Philip Nitschke who plans to take advantage of the Dutch decision legalizing euthanasia, buy a Dutch-registered ship and circumvent Australian law. He came to attention when he performed euthanasia on 4 terminally ill patients. Australias Northern Territory briefly legalized the practice in 1996. The law was reversed but Nitschke has continued to hold workshops for terminally ill patients about how best they can kill themselves.
Dutch Dr.Rebecca Gomperts claims to have funds for a ship, Sea Change, to be ready for abortions on the sea by June. First announced stop is Ireland where abortion is against the law. The Observer (UK); 4/8/01 in The Pro-Life Infonet; 4/9/01 & NRLC News; 5/01
England looking to legalize assisted suicide
A plan to legalize euthanasia in England and Wales is widely expected should the Labour Party win the general election. A Labour Party spokesman would give no confirmation that the party would make a commitment to extending the Adults with Incapacity (Scotland) Act to other parts of the United Kingdom. In 1999, Lord Irvine, the Lord Chancellor had said that legislation to authorize euthanasia by neglect in England and Wales would be introduced as soon as parliamentary time allowed.
Opposition to this push has come from the Society for the Protection of Unborn Children (SPUC). Alison Davis, head of its handicap division said:
"There is no doubt that the Scottish legislation has opened the door to allowing vulnerable people to become victims of euthanasia by neglect, and it would be extremely regrettable if it were applied to other parts of the UK as well. Under the Scottish law, doctors could be expected to kill an incapacitated patient by starvation and dehydration. This could be done both on those who have a terminal illness and on those who are not dying but are incapacitated, at the behest of a proxy who may not be aware of the medical situation. The proxy could even stand to benefit from the patients death."
The SPUC promotes the inherent value and dignity of all human life from the moment of conception to natural death. Society for the Protection of Unborn Children; 4/9/01 in the Pro-Life Infonet; 4/10/01
Korean doctors pushing for legal euthanasia
So-called mercy killings are illegal in South Korea. However, the Korean Medical Association, a lobby for 70,000 doctors, has drafted a new ethics code. The code would give doctors great latitude to deny lifesaving medical treatment.
Even with the code adopted, there are legal problems anticipated. The code will be in conflict with the criminal law and close checking will be required.
With the new code, doctors will have broad power. They will be allowed to cease treating terminally ill patients when they so decide or when asked to do so, in writing, by patients families. The code also enables doctors to refuse demands for treatment by patients families if the doctor believes the treatment is medically "needless." Associated Press; 4/13/01 in The Pro-Life Infonet; 4-15-01
"If you dont stand for something
Youll fall for everything."
Message at Greater Rochester International Airport
If you got up one morning and discovered a big hole in the sidewalk in front of your house, wouldnt you be alarmed? Youd be very concerned if the hole were so large people could fall into it and perhaps not be able to get out. Youd probably rush to the hole checking if anyone might be stuck at the bottom needing help to get out.
Youd probably put up a sign that said, "Danger"
Put up a Danger sign is what we have done with our advertising at the Monroe County Airport. There are two dioramas (backlit transparencies), one on either side of the interior of the terminal building. They feature an 8-week unborn child, with the message "Please dont do it. Shes your baby."
Abortion hurts women and kills their unborn children. The women who turn to post-abortion counseling groups say they didnt understand the development of the child they aborted and they didnt know that they had real options for help. So they suffer later because there were no warning signs posted at the time they "chose" abortion
A local billboard put up by Feminists for Life clearly states that in abortion there are two victims, one dead and one wounded. But newspaper reporters, TV commentators/shows, and especially friendly abortion center counselors all say, "Its nothing. The baby isnt really a baby, its just a blob of tissue." Knowledge frequently comes later, much too late.
This is our warning sign. The eight-week human is no blob. She is somebodys daughter and should be protected. Her mother is human, too, and may need help. The people who answer the phone at the national helpline care about both the mother and child.
Dr. Rainer Jonas, the owner of the photo used in the diorama, is quite firm about how his photos are to be used. They may not be used with photos of aborted babies or abortion slogans, logos or abortion method displays or descriptions. He says, " the pictures must be used in a positive way because I believe that peoples thinking and feeling can be changed only by seeing the beauty of all tiny creatures in this world. They must be shown like flowers which stand in blossom. Only this, - I believe - will change minds."
The ad refers to a national organization number; airport visitors will not be totally area people. The people at the site of the national service named on the ad will refer callers to the services most close to the callers residential area.
National helpline for problem pregnancies 1-888-4-OPTIONS
Resolution on Human
Whereas the National Right to Life Committee seeks to protect innocent human life from its earliest beginning until natural death;
Whereas each human life at every stage of biological development is deserving of respect and protection regardless of the circumstances under which that human life was created;
Whereas it has been proposed to create human life through cloning for the purpose of destructive experiments on those human beings so created, resulting in their deaths, and for the purpose of scavenging the bodies of those human being to obtain tissues and organs, resulting in their deaths;
Therefore be it resolved:
Assisted-suicide in Oregon
Oregon is the only U.S. state in which assisted-suicide is legal. It has been practiced there for three years with 27 persons in the year 2000 killed by lethal drugs requested of and provided by doctors. Physicians have said "patients have increasingly expressed concern about becoming a burden to family, friends or caregivers." In 2000, 63% spoke of this fear compared to 26% in 1999 and 12% is 1998.
In 2000, 19% of the suicide applicants were referred for psychological evaluations compared to 37% in 1999. That is lamentable. The medical consensus is that most suicide wishes of sick/elderly reflect treatable depression.
A rising percent of victims were married (67%) and female (56%). This raised question of whether older married women were getting messages of being a "burden" on their husbands and then agreed to assisted suicide. Choose Life; 3 & 4/01
Target Corp. stopped funding Planned Parenthood
The decision of the Target Corp. to stop funding Planned Parenthood will cost PP $18,000 a year. Target is now focusing its corporate giving on a program in cooperation with the Tiger Woods Foundation. To express appreciation to the company, call 1-888-304-4000.
The official spokeswoman for Planned Parenthood declined to comment. Former president, Faye Wattleton wrote in Life on the Line,
|"Corporate support was only about 5% of our budget, but it meant a great deal to us .The credibility that such endorsements bestowed was at least as valuable as the actual dollars given. It was important that we receive support from every sector of our society from the kid who sent a portion of an allowance to major conglomerates."|
Target and other effective boycotts have been done through Life Decisions
P.O. Box 75161; Washington, DC 20013-5161
They advocate both not purchasing products made by boycotted companies and also not doing business with stores/companies, which fund Planned Parenthood. Three companies currently on their list are:
Mr. Harvey Golub, Chairman & CEO
American Express Company; American Express Tower
World Financial Center
New York NY 10285
LEVI STRAUSS (Dockers, Brittania and Slates)
Mr. Arthur F. Ryan: Chairman, President & CEO
Prudential Insurance Co. of America
751 Broad Street
Newark, N.J. 07102-3777
The full boycott list is extensive. It is published 2 to 6 times a year and an annual subscription costs $38.00. A copy of the full list of boycotted companies at this time is available for $14 at the address shown above.
Pro-abortion group spends $2M to promote RU-486
The national pro-abortion ad campaign for RU-486 is expected to hit the nations newsstands in July. The National Abortion Federation, (NAF), a Washington, D.C. based association of abortion facilities, is paying for the ads. They are initially scheduled to appear in magazines like Cosmopolitan, People, Vanity Fair. NAF claims the ad has also been accepted for display in In Style, Jane, Mademoiselle, Glamour, Fitness, Health, Self, First for Women and Essence. Hearst Corporations Redbook has refused to run the ad. NAFs goal is to reach 74% of women between 18 and 49.
The ads show a picture of a crisply dressed young woman gazing out a window. "You have the freedom to choose. And now, you have another safe abortion choice," the text says, directing readers to an information hotline the pro-abortion group operates. The ad refers to the dangerous abortion drug as "the Early Option Pill" or its generic name, mifepristone. It does not mention the brand name, Mifeprex, the manufacturer, or the long list of possible side effects or other clinical data.
That the ad provides no information about the risks and dangers associated with RU 486 is a major concern of pro-life advocates. The pro-abortion groups defended their decision to exclude the information. "This isnt a pharmaceutical ad.," said Vicky Saporta, Executive Director of NAF. "We arent a pharmaceutical company." She said NAF didnt run the ad past the Food and Drug Administration and doesnt believe it requires FDA approval. Wall Street Journal; 5/23/01 in Pro-Life Infonet; 5/24/01
RU-486 flunking out on college campuses
All available evidence indicates RU-486 has not been the breakthrough product its fans hoped. Despite an expected eager market on college campuses, at least 30 major colleges/universities have indicated no plan to make RU-486 available on campuses. Some of the schools taking that position: Princeton University, Boston University, University of Michigan, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, University of Oklahoma, Florida State University, UCLA. Yale University is the only major university that has publicly indicated plans to make RU-486 available on campus. NRLC; 5/01
RU-486 not being ordered by many doctors
There are apparently numerous reasons for doctors holding back usage of RU-486. Among them are the time involved in counseling and expense of ultrasound equipment and training. In approving RU-486, the FDA decided not to require doctors to have training in handling complications or performing surgical abortions for women for whom the RU-486 method failed. It did, however, mandate that doctors without such skills make arrangements with some doctor to handle complications. Doctors serving at clinics expected, but have not received, calls for this type of backup help. NRLC; 5/01
Healthy baby born after chemical abortion attempt
When 18 year old Nicole Saia learned she was pregnant, she followed urging of he babys father to have an abortion and received an injection of methotrexate, the first step in one of the chemical abortion processes.
Two days later, realizing she did not want to abort her baby, she sought a doctor. Through ultrasound, Dr. Steven Roth determined her baby was still alive. He gave drugs to overwhelm the methotrexate. Completely healthy Alexandria Nicole was born in 4/01. St. Petersburgh Times: 5/13/01; National Catholic Register; 5/27/01
There have been numerous "new faces" at the RARTL office; they could not be more welcome. Volunteer help is a critical backbone of our work and we are thrilled with the responses to our calls for help.
Weve had men and women, some employed and others retired. Students have also helped. In fact the age range of recent volunteers has been 14 to 86 years of age. Most come to the office, but there are some activities possible to do at home. Executive Director, Pat Amato, will gladly help you find the types of activities that best fit your interests, skills and time availability.
Some activities needing continuous volunteer help: mailings, i.e. folding, labeling; legislative activities, i.e. research, outreach, education; community outreach, i.e. making contacts for talks at schools & displays at school/community/mall events, fairs; computer data input. Many more volunteers needed for display table at Monroe County Fair. Call Pat: 716-621-4690; 8 4 PM M, T, TH, F. Shell gladly review all opportunities.
Please become a prayer partner by spending 5-10 minutes daily in prayer about life issues. We hope this partnership will fill 24 hours of each day to have a prayer shield over the area. Please join in the following suggested weekly prayer themes that
June 17 All fathers be gratefully and prayerfully remembered.
June 24 - All whose lives threatened by the culture of death mentality receive life-affirming care
July 1 - Physicians tempted by financial rewards of performing abortions may return to their professions oath not to destroy human life
July 8 - All Christians unite in working for protection of the unborn, the elderly and the terminally ill
July 15 - Those who work to bring the pro-life message to a weary world be blessed with the gift of patient endurance.
Joseph A. Amato
Patience Rose Cragg-Hoer
Want to do a RARTL MEMORIAL/HONOR TRIBUTE? You are most welcome to remember a deceased loved one by making a memorial contribution to the Rochester Area Right to Life Committee Education Fund. Your tax-deductible contribution can also commemorate birthdays, new arrivals, or other special occasions.
A card in your name will be sent to the family/person you designate. The contribution amount is confidential.
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