“I think the side that wants to take the choice away from women and give it to the state, they’re fighting a losing battle. Time is on the side of change.
— Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Associate Justice SCOTUS, NY Times July 12, 2009-07-19
On July 20, 1969 I was about to enter my senior year in high school and training intensely for the upcoming football season. I did take time to watch the landing on the moon and heard the words of Neil Armstrong — “One small step for man, one giant leap for mankind” — as they were spoken by Armstrong on the surface of the moon. I felt tremendous pride in being an American and had great hope for a better future for myself and my generation.
Its hard for me to believe that back in 1969, “only” forty years ago, the equal protection of the laws against homicide were applied to all Americans regardless of race, gender, national origin, age, or condition of dependency. In doing so, the laws of our nation protected the “inalienable right to life” emphatically recognized by the founders of our nation in the “Declaration of Independence”. By “equal protection” the law means that all laws must be applied equally to all human beings. Thus, the state could not punish the murder of an American of European descent but not punish the murder of an American of African descent all other things being equal. Thus, the laws against homicide were also applied to protect the lives of Americans before they were born and while they were residing in the wombs of their mothers.
On April 12, 1970, the Apollo 13 mission to the moon began with an uneventful and almost routine launch of the spacecraft. Within a year of the first lunar landing, America’s media had become bored and hardly paid attention to the mission. However, a “problem” developed during the flight which could have killed the crew. Once again the whole world watched the unfolding drama. As a result, the planned lunar landing had to be “aborted”. Fortunately the astronauts made it home safely through a combination of skill, courage and Divine Providence.
This dramatic episode of American history was recently documented in Ron Howard’s movie “Apollo 13”. The movie memorialized the phrase spoken by one of the astronauts in the spacecraft: “Houston…we have a problem”.
Almost parallel to this ugly turn of events in the space program, the United States Supreme Court changed the popular use of the word “abortion” in the case of Roe v. Wade decided on January 22, 1973. In this decision the Supreme Court nullified the criminal statutes of 46 states which had given legal protection to the lives of Americans before birth. The court legalized the killing of human beings in the womb through a procedure known as an “abortion”. In justifying its radical break from U.S. jurisprudence, a majority of the court invented “a new constitutional right for pregnant mothers” through “an exercise of said judicial power” per Byron White, Associate Justice SCOTUS, in a dissenting opinion joined by Associate Justice Rehnquist.
Ignoring the wisdom of Horton Hears a Who,“a person is a person no matter how small,” the eminent jurists sitting on the Supreme Court of the United States dismissed the state’s argument that the word “person” as used in the Fourteenth Amendment to the Constitution included the “unborn”. In a cowardly rhetorical punt the majority opinion condescendingly rejected the central argument of the State of Texas:
“Texas urges that, apart from the Fourteenth Amendment, life begins at conception and is present throughout pregnancy, and that, therefore, the state has a compelling interest in protecting that life from and after conception .We need not resolve the difficult question of when life begins. When those trained in the respected disciplines of medicine, philosophy, and theology are unable to arrive at any consensus, the judiciary, at this point in the development of man’s knowledge, is not in a position to speculate as to the answer.”
I strongly suspect that Associate Justice Harry Blackmun and his cohorts did not really believe their assertion that the scientific community did not agree on the beginning point of human life. We had a word for it then and we have a word for it now: “conception,” meaning origin or beginning, and it relates to the point of fertilization of a human egg by human sperm resulting in a completely unique human biological organism.
Nevertheless, the state of “man’s” knowledge about the origin of human life has greatly expanded since 1972. Ironically, the U.S. Space Program has contributed to that knowledge through the development of digital image technology popularly known as CAT Scan and MRI. We can now look into a living human body and see images of the internal parts of the body. Thus, we can now see into the womb of a woman and document the formation of he human being from almost the point of conception through her childbirth.
We also know that every human being has unique DNA. It is so scientifically accepted that DNA evidence is now routinely used in courts of law to help determine the guilt or innocence of humans accused of crimes. We also know that the unique human DNA of every human being is set at the time of conception and it never changes after conception. Thus, our gender, hair, eye color, skin pigment, and other biological characteristics were established at our conception.
Despite the scientific evidence, the legal killing of unborn Americans continues day after day with a total death toll of more than fifty million unborn of partially-born human babies. Many legal attempts to overturn Roe v. Wade have been rejected by the Supreme Court. I can not help but ask why intelligent and educated humans can turn their back on their fellow human beings allowing them to be slaughtered in so many horrific ways. It has also puzzled me that three conservative justices of the Supreme Court appointed by “conservative” President Richard Nixon could join the liberal wing of the Supreme Court to jettison the historical principles of our nation in Roe v. Wade.
A current member of SCOTUS recently shed some light on the policy behind the decision. Ruth Bader Ginsburg, formerly General Counsel for the ACLU, recently gave an interview to a reporter for the New York Times. She admitted that Roe v. Wade was necessary in order to cleanse American of unwanted populations by making abortion available as a means of birth control. Justice Ginsburg’s remarks appear to align her expectations for abortion with those of Planned Parenthood founder Margaret Sanger and other prominent members of the eugenics movement. Sanger and her eugenicist peers advocated the systematic use of contraceptive, sterilization, and abortion to reduce the numbers of poor, black, immigrant, and disabled populations.
Ginsburg’s comments were made in the context of a discussion on the absence of Medicaid funding for abortions for “poor” women. Ginsburg advocates the expansion of Medicaid to cover abortions. No public funding for abortion has been allowed since 1976 when Congressman Henry Hyde helped pass the Hyde Amendment to the Medical Law. The Supreme Court upheld the constitutionally of the Hyde Amendment in 1980 in Harris v. McRae. Despite the lack of public funding it has been estimated that 40 percent of all aborted babies since 1972 have been African Americans.
Ironically, the ban on Medicaid funding for abortion may be coming to end through the enactment of so called comprehensive health care reform. The Senate is now considering a bill sponsored by Senator Ted Kennedy to establish universal health care partially with government financing. In addition, the US House of Representatives is considering the House Democratic leadership health care reform bill, the 1000-page HR 3200. Pro-life organizations have issued alerts to their membership asking the pro-life community to oppose enactment of these bills unless they specifically exclude abortion from health care plans.
A courageous group of Democrat Congressmen, including our Congressman Kanjorski but excluding Congressman Chris Carney, have written a letter to Speaker Nancy Pelosi informing her that they will not support any health care reform proposals unless it specifically excludes abortion from the scope of any government defined or subsidized health care plan. A total of 19 Democrat members of Congress signed this letter. A Senate committee recently approved the Kennedy bill after it was amended by an amendment offered by Senator Barbara Mikulski. Senator Mikulski has a 100% pro-death voting record.. She admitted under questioning by Senator Orrin Hatch and Senator Robert Casey that her amendment would require insurers to include Planned Parenthood clinics as providers and cover services offered deemed “medically appropriate” which would include abortions. Amendments offered that would exclude abortion from health care plans were defeated in Committee. Senator Casey voted against the Mikulski amendment, but later voted in favor of the Kennedy bill as amended by the Mikulski amendment.
America…we have a problem! The Ginsburgs, Mikulskis, Pelosis ,Kennedys and Clintons of America are on a March for Death. It looks like they are going to succeed in making legal abortion an integral part of American health care. They can only be stopped by the vocal opposition of the American people the majority of which is pro-life.
We need to contact our representatives and senators immediately because POTUS Obama is pushing for enactment of this legislation before the August recess. I urge everyone to make an effort to prevent this social injustice from coming to pass.
More importantly God’s people need to pray and fast to overcome this evil (Mark 9:29).
Mary Jo Kopechne, pray for us!
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