Monday, March 30, 2009

The Reality of the Unborn



Despite the wealth of knowledge now available about fetal development, many women still don't know, or perhaps they deny, that the unborn are simply smaller versions of us. Certainly, they are at a stage of development, but our entire lives are a road of development. To hold that they are disposable while in the womb is denial of their humanity. For those who say they are human and still assert the right of women to abort their children, what can one say? This is simply condoning murder.

Over the weekend I read a post from a young man whose girlfriend had aborted their child. He has struggled with the emotions of that decision and has come to the conclusion that only those faced with abortions have any right to speak about the morality of the decision to abort. How ridiculous! From this follows, that only drug addicts can speak about drug addiction, only alcoholics can warn others of the dangers of alcohol addiction, only reformed gamblers can speak about that addiction. In effect, only the damaged have any right to speak about their issue, as they have first hand experience. Well, let's all jump in here and experience some really awful things so that we can know what we are talking about.

One does not have to have had an abortion to come face to face with the humanity of the unborn child. My own experience has been an evolution through many years, beginning first with the belief that all human beings have a right to life and finding myself drawn more and more into this debate which is called the greatest human rights struggle in the world.

I have had three children, all grown up now; but between baby #2 and #3, I had three miscarriages. Miscarriage is not something one is prepared for and it is rather a shock when it happens. The first miscarriage, at 12 weeks gestation, resulted in a day's hospitalization, with a D & C being recommended to remove any left-over tissue, which can cause life-threatening infection. Just months later, I had a second miscarriage, again at the 12-week point. This one came on rather suddenly while on holiday and resulted in a 60-mile trip by ambulance to a hospital in North Bay. The attending nurse informed me that 1 in 4 pregnancies ends in miscarriage and that, since she had four children, I was having the miscarriage that rightfully belonged to her. A rather clumsy attempt to give me consolation, but it worked. She was sympathetic and caring, although stats are not what one wants to hear at that time.

The third miscarriage was a completely different experience. This time, I knew something was not right by around the 8th week of pregnancy. The occasional morning sickness was no longer present, I had no sensations of a heaviness in my lower abdomen as I had with the other pregnancies. And I just was not getting any bigger. I already knew, by the absence of pregnancy symptoms, that the life within me had died. Before that time, I knew something was growing within my body; and after that time, I knew it had ceased to be. There was a sense of emptiness, which certainly gives lie to the statement, my body, my choice. But I didn't miscarry until 4 weeks later. That miscarriage resulted in a lot of bleeding, so much so that it required three blood transfusions as I went into shock in the hospital. But the experience of that miscarriage can still bring tears to my eyes. And it was the attending doctor who brings those tears.

I arrived at the hospital, and they checked me in quickly, given the bleeding. The attending nurse began to take down the facts. In medical language, a miscarriage is not recorded as a miscarriage, it is written down as an abortion. I think that they might write spontaneous abortion on the record, but obviously in my case that wasn't so. Because the nurse said to me, "so you have had two abortions?" she was rather hostile as she said this to me. I replied "no, I didn't have an abortion, I had two miscarriages. This is my third miscarriage." She immediately changed her tone with me, and became attentive and sympathetic.

When the doctor arrived to check on me, he introduced himself as a gynecologist, Dr. Himaya. I learned later that he was Egyptian, therefore I assume Muslim (although that may not be necessarily true) and he was a bachelor, which I found rather interesting. This doctor read the chart quickly and said the same thing as the nurse. "so you have had two abortions before this?" When I said "no, they were miscarriages", he too changed his tone. And I saw a kindness come over his face that impressed me. He began an internal examination, he was extremely delicate, and as he removed the tissue, he said to me in a voice that communicated a sense of wonder: "this baby died about four weeks ago, the baby is calcified." There was something about the way he said that to me that just hit home hard; this was indeed my child who had died, as I had thought, at 8 weeks gestation. The fact that the doctor told me, so delicately, that the baby's body parts were now calcified, made me realise that he too was recognizing the life that had left this little person.
Dr. Himaya did not say very much more, at least I don't remember anything else he said, but I recall his gentle way with me and, most of all, his gentle way with my baby who never saw this world.

A person is a person, no matter how small.

Friday, March 27, 2009

40 Days for Life in Augusta, Maine




The first photo shows the banner in the trunk of one man's car; the second photo is the clinic on the other side of the road. Photo #3 shows their signs and the empty field immediately behind them; the final photo shows the family of four: mom and dad and two sons who come every Saturday and Sunday for two hours. The older woman, wearing two coats to keep warm, is a mother of ten and grandmother of 34 - she prays for three hours every Sunday afternoon.





Last week, I had an opportunity to visit the site of 40 Days for Life, in Augusta, Maine. I had emailed the coordinator there and got directions to the vigil site. I was expecting to be in a fairly busy area, after all the Planned Parenthood clinic was in a business park.

So I was more than a little surprised when I turned onto the road and saw some straggly folks by the side of the road with a few wind-whipped signs, two cars and nothing else but a huge barren field behind them. The only building in site is the clinic across the road. This clinic has been built on a secondary road outside of the city. The closest public facility is the Irving gas station half a mile away, and the traffic consists of large transport trucks going to the warehouse further down the road to pick up their loads.

The vigil site is on the crest of a hill, with no protection whatever from the wind that whips across the field. There is only room to park two cars, and the prayer faithfuls stand there and put in their hour or two, pacing back and forth to keep warm.



I felt embarrassed to realise that we have a clean sidewalk to stand on, we even have stools to sit on, and we can go into the hospital if we need to use the washroom. We even have a kind taxi driver who comes by and brings us hot chocolate.
I was humbled by these people's commitment; they have just a little over 100 people signed up to put in 12 hours per day. And most of those are retirees who have committed to two hours daily for the entire 40 days. I felt such a surge of warmth for them as they bear witness to the sanctity of life in that God-forsaken place.

One man told me a few things about the clinic. On Wednesdays and Thursdays, there are many cars arriving, mostly filled with teenagers sometimes four in a car. He figures that Planned Parenthood must give out free birth control on those days. Once a week, an unmarked van arrives and a man gets out and goes into the clinic, carrying a cooler. He exits ten minutes later with the cooler and leaves. This is probably a courier picking up body parts that he takes to the airport and they are shipped to some medical research facility. Many people don't realise that, not only do they make money on abortions, abortion is a big business in the selling of fetal body parts for research.
He also told me that the majority of people who come to the clinic are teen girls. They have a security guard at all times the clinic is open and 40 Days for Life is not allowed on that side of the road at all.

They may not get the looks and comments that we got on the public sidewalk of South Park Street, but there is a horrible sense of abandonment there, facing that building of death. That is what the faithful people in Augusta, Maine face every day as they pray. God bless them all.

The man I spoke to has the banner Choose Life in the trunk of his car. He is the father of 7 children and grandfather of 17, one of whom will be ordained to the priesthood this spring. He comes every day for two hours to pray. God bless him and his family.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

The Hidden Life of Nuns

This post is for my youngest daughter Martha who joined the Franciscans of Halifax a year and a half ago. Her new name is Sister Ilaria of Jesus; Ilaria is an Italian name that means joy.

Her life is a hidden one, lived around prayer and learning the will of God. What the future will hold is uncertain; but given the current loss of faith in the western world, one can assume that being a person of faith can only become harder. And for those who wear a religious habit, that proclaims to the godless world, that they are followers of Jesus Christ, life will be even harder than for the rest of us.



For Sisters Ilaria, Miriam, Teresa, Terese, Rita, Bernadette, the three contemplative sisters, and for Father Roberto, God bless you all.

Monday, March 23, 2009

Free Speech but not if you are pro life



Reverend Walter Hoye was sentenced to 30 days in jail plus he was fined $1130 for speaking to women entering an abortion clinic in Oakland, CA. Hoye broke the ruling that prolife advocates cannot approach women who are entering the abortion clinic and offer them alternatives to abortion. However, anyone who encourages the women to enter the clinic are within the law. Where is the freedom of speech in that?

The area immediately outside the clinic is a public sidewalk; why are people with one message allowed to speak to abortion-minded women there, but those with a pro life message are forbidden?

Hoye is an African American pastor who is troubled by the fact that 37% of black pregnancies end in abortion, compared with 19% for Hispanic women and 12% for non-Hispanic women (presumably white women). He is aware of the fact that there is a black genocide going on in America, something that President Obama does not acknowledge. The proportion of blacks in America is diminishing and their place in North American society will become a real visible minority within a matter of years, given the current rate of abortion.

Hoye has been picketing outside the abortion clinic since early 2007, carrying a sign that says "Jesus loves you and your baby, let us help you". Abortion workers have been upset with Hoye's presence and have got between him and the women, shouting loudly so that he cannot be heard and then accusing him of harrassing the women. So who is really harrassing here? the prayerful pastor who seeks to help the predominantly black women entering the clinic, or the clinic workers who hurriedly rush the women into the clinic so that they can take their money for the awful deed?

Remind you of anyone else? Linda Gibbons of Toronto, who has served over five years in jail for peacefully picketing outside an abortion clinic in Toronto, stepping inside a bubble zone that was put there temporarily in 1994.

Strange, isn't it, that pro choice advocates speak about the law meting out jail terms for illegal abortions, should the law be overturned when the only ones in jail are those who are pro life?

African American pastor sent to jail - LifeSiteNews - March 23, 2009

Justice in Canada - Linda Gibbons

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Becoming Political about Abortion



I have made mention of Dr. Bernard Nathanson several times in previous posts, but this man keeps coming back to me and I am so impressed with him that I will dedicate this post solely to him.

A good biography of Nathanson can be found on Wikipedia - here
- worth reading to get some idea of the extent of this man's experience with the issue of abortion.

Nathanson was a key member of NARAL, the National Association for the Repeal of Abortion Laws, a group in the US dedicated to making abortion legal in the US. I first encountered Nathanson when reading about the Silent Scream, a video that he produced in 1984 when he filmed a suction abortion. The results of that video caused the doctor who performed the abortion to cease doing abortions altogether and the person who edited the tape later withdrew from all public work; both were so affected by the experience. Nathanson himself took a while longer to form his decision to reject abortion. Being a man of no faith, he approached this completely from a scientific perspective, and over a period of a few years, he came to the conclusion that abortion did in fact end the life of a human being. He states that it was the emergence of ultrasound technology that brought about his conclusion that the unborn were human beings.

I began my reading of Nathanson last year with his book The Hand of God, in which he traces his conversion to Catholicism and the book is a wonderful read. I can pick it up, open it at any page, and be completely captivated by this man's journey.

After his change from pro-choice activist to pro-life spokesman, Nathanson of course was rejected by his peers. And the media shunned him as well. In fact, when he came to Toronto in 1983 to address a pro-life gathering, the media refused to cover the event. This gave birth to The Interim newspaper, which was begun precisely to cover the story and subsequent other stories that the mainstream media chose to ignore. His stunning conversion reminds one of someone else in history - St. Paul.

Dr. Bernard N. Nathanson was The Interim's very first cover story back in March 1983. And deservedly so. Previously the director of the Western world's largest abortion site and co-founder of the National Association to Repeal the Abortion Laws - sort of a Henry Morgentaler writ even larger - Nathanson stunned both sides of the debate when he converted to the pro-life side in the late 1970's. He then became an ardent and compelling proponent for the right to life of the unborn.
-The Interim, March 2009

Nathanson's story of his journey would be of particular interest to anyone who has a logical mind, who doesn't accept the pro-life position on the basis of faith but who needs to know the facts. I highly recommend getting to know the man and his story if you are of that mindset.

The Interim: In terms of your own change of heart, can you tell us a little about what prompted that?
Nathanson: It was a strictly scientific excursion into intra-uterine life, which persuaded me that abortion was unacceptable. I started changing my mind in 1973, when advanced technology moved into our hospitals and offices. I speak now of ultrasound imaging, fetal heart monitoring electronically, hysteroscopy, fetoscopy - things that gave us a window into the womb. Over a period of three or four years, I mulled over these technologies and what they revealed ... They opened a window into the womb so we could look in it, see the unborn baby and measure it and observe it sleeping, swallowing, urinating and all the things we all do as members of the (human) community. I was finally persuaded that the fetus is a member of the human community, has to be regarded as such and has to be protected as such.


In The Hand of God, Nathanson spells out the incredible progress of knowledge in the world of fetoscopy, something that most pro-choice advocates do not know.

In order to give you some idea of the immense influence of this new techonology on the practice of obstetrics and our knowledge of the fetus, let me tell you that there is a huge book called The Cumulative Index Medicus,which lists every article published in every medical journal in the world. In the l969 edition of the Index under the heading of "fetus, physiology and anatomy of," there were five articles in the world's literature. As recently as that, we knew almost nothing of the fetus; when abortion on demand was unleashed in the United States, fetology essentially did not exist. In l979, there were twenty-eight hundred articles, and by l994 there were close to five thousand. This technology had opened a new world to us.
- The Hand of God, by Bernard Nathanson

The technology to which he refers is, of course, ultrasound. It is known that, if a pregnant woman intending to abort, sees a picture of her baby on ultrasound before the abortion, she is almost 90% sure to change her mind about the abortion. That is the best reason possible to make sure that every pregnant woman sees the ultrasound imaging of what is within her uterus. And also the reason why some Planned Parenthood clinics discourage women from viewing those ultrasounds.

An excellent one-page article to read is Nathanson's confession, available here - truly the statement of a man who has had to be humble about his life.

I am now reading Nathanson's book Aborting America, which he wrote in 1975. I kept having to check that date, because as I read, I got the sense that it was written from his perspective after his change of heart. But, no he wrote this while he was in the middle of changing his position. As he writes of his activities to make abortion legal, one gets the sense that this man is jaded by what he is doing, that he sees through the arguments of the pro-choice side, and he makes insightful remarks into their activities and the characters of the persons involved.

The man has a brilliant mind; he has such clarity of thought and expression, most unusual for a medical doctor! in fact, you need to have a dictionary beside you as you read, since words like "glabrous" pop up and who knows what that means?

Nathanson is now in his 80's and is no longer active due to health reasons. He spent two decades, from 1980 to 2000, on the pro-life speaking circuit. And he tells the story of his moving conversion to the Roman Catholic faith in the book The Hand of God. This is a man you cannot dismiss; he has lived on both sides of this issue and he is not a loud abrasive activist, but rather a quiet, extremely well-spoken advocate for the unborn. Tha challenge he presents is the one the truth always presents.

The Interim interview concludes with a question for Nathanson about how to progress in the pro-life movement today, given the election of a very pro-choice president in the US. Nathanson's response is quite hopeful and I think it is worth considering very seriously if you are a pro-life activist.

The Freedom of Choice Act ... will be a body blow to the pro-life movement. With the congressional majority being so overwhelmingly Democratic, it will probably pass, as I say, and there's little we can do as pro-lifers except protest peacefully... Politics is, of course, the first thing to do. Interestingly, the subject of abortion came up very infrequently during the (election) campaign. We know Obama is pro-abortion, but the abortion issue was never debated in the entire presidential campaign. McCain hardly ever mentioned it and Obama steered clear of it... The country is equally divided - 47 percent pro-life, 47% pro-abortion. What we have to do is be politically active and seize the opportunity to elect pro-life legislators and executives. I think we can do that, given patience and time.
Don't forget, we have progressed from approximately a 25 percent chunk of the electorate to 47 percent in mere 20 years or so. I think we can do it, but as I say, it will take time.


Quoted from The Interim newspaper, published by Interim Publishing, 104 Bond Street, Toronto, Ontario M5B 1X9. For subscriptions, call Dan DiRocco at (416) 204-1687

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Obama and Stem Cell Research - More

Following on the heels of the video I posted yesterday, I came across an article by Father Raymond de Souza, written in the National Post on March 12, 2009.

Entitled Obama is No Champion of Science, de Souza points out that Obama lifted the ban on embryonic stem cell research with huge fanfare. What Obama has done is open the floodgates of tax payers' money to fund research that the private sector has not. And why not? Obama never mentions this:

"To date, ESCR (embryonic stem cell research) has not produced any successful human therapies. Not one. Cures from embryodestructive research are not around the corner. They are not even in sight."

Neither does anyone else ever mention that fact. Read the entire article here

"So what about all those stem cell wonders regularly reported? There have been hundreds of them, and all of them have come from adult stem cells -- stem cells taken not by destroying embryos, but from other sources, such as bone marrow or umbilical cords. There is no ethical problem. There are actual cures. That's the science....

Yet despite the science and ethics increasingly being on the same side, namely against embryo-destructive research, Obama chose to go with politics. Indeed, while the President spoke at length about his funding announcement on Monday, he was curiously silent on another action he took at the same time. He reversed a Bush executive order from 2007 which directed funding toward adult stem cell research and reprogramming research -- that is, research that offers the same promise with no ethical objections. President Obama had no pretty words for that part of his policy. While presenting himself as a champion of science, he moved to reduce federal funds to stem cell research that is more promising than ESCR. Obama's stem cell policy is positively hostile to research that does not destroy embryos. It is perverse on the science, and disingenuous on the politics.

It's doubtful that pouring money into ESCR will lead to more rapid cures. What's not in doubt is that doing so has earned Obama the gratitude of laboratories desirous of easy money. The politician chose the politics, and the scientists took the money. No research prize for predicting that."

So why the fanfare? why the hype about embryonic stem cell research? why is there such a push for it? I believe that it is part of the death wish of our culture; we have compromised our consciences by allowing abortion; the turning away from the culture that held life to be the highest value has led us to act like the Roman crowds who watched as victims were thrown to the lions. The public cheers and applauds as legislation that promotes death is passed. People no longer hunger for the truth; they hunger for violence and death. The taste for blood cannot be satiated. While those who throw the victims to the lions get big bucks for it.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

As for Obama

Now as for the current President on the same topic, where does he stand?



"we will support this research only when it is scientifically worthy and responsibly conducted; we will develop strict guidelines which we will rigorously enforce because we can not ever tolerate misuse or abuse. We will insure that our government never opens the door to the use of cloning for human reproduction, it is
dangerous, profoundly wrong, and has no place in our society or any society. This order is an important step in advancing the cause of science in America .... it's about letting scientists do their jobs free from manipulation or coercion, and listening to what they tell us, even when it is inconvenient, especially when it is inconvenient."


Ah, science has become the moral compass of our society. Just hunky-dorey, don't you think? Hitler let scientists do all sorts of inhumane things in his country, he encouraged them to do things that we later punished them for with death. And here we have someone doing exactly the same thing, but the people this time are very small, we can barely see them. Just microscopic, they're not really humans.

This man has no moral compass; I get particularly upset when he says he is a man of faith, notice he doesn't say what faith. Because you can't really find out what he believes in, other than his own destiny. Don't forget, the only accomplishments to date of this man are two, not one, but two autobiographies.

Yes, I have to say he is (ignorant, that is)

Yesterday, I posted a video of Bill Clinton being interviewed on CNN on the topic of stem cell research. In that interview, Clinton referred at least six times to embryos that have not been fertilized, that will never be fertilized, that are beyond the pale of being fertilized and then becoming "little babies". I couldn't believe it; someone remarked that perhaps he had just been drinking in the bar in the basement of the CNN building and he got confused.

So I watched some more footage of Clinton speaking on this topic and he says the same thing there too. This video is of Clinton speaking at an event for the Michigan Cure in October 2008. Again he refers to embryos that are not fertilized.




"I have a very close friend who is a devout doctor, Catholic, pro life, and when he found out I was coming here today, he said "good for you, I don't know how anybody could be against this. This is the pro life position.....the fact is when this ban was adopted decades ago, we didn't know then what we know now (and you still don't, Bill - my words) .....the research ought to be able to be done on any embryos that were stored to deal with infertility challenges but would never be used, that is could never be fertilized and that otherwise, lawfully, can simply be thrown away.... I have spent a lot of my life on these problems."
-

And there's more:



"... if you have embryonic stem cell potential and embryos developed to deal with fertility issues and they will never be fertilized and they can be legally thrown away, then by voluntary open consent, the people who possess them should be able to give them to medical research. That's what the law ought to be...you're not going to lose this, unless people go into the polling booths not knowing the facts."


And then everyone clapped! are they as ignorant as Bill Clinton? was there not one person there who challenged this man's statements?

At this point, Clinton pointed to Christopher Reeve's daughter who had spoken previously. He then plays on emotion by saying that people need to know the stories, such as that of Superman. By appealing to the individual cases that pull on the heart strings (and who has not felt compassion for Christopher Reeves and his wife and children?), Clinton takes the debate into the realm of feelings, and right out of the realm of ethics. We should do what it feels good to do, not what is morally right to do, but what feels good.

He did the same thing when arguing for late term abortion, he brought in women who testified about the need for their abortions. He brought in hard cases to make people feel compassion for these women, to the point that this compassion overrode what might be niggling them in their consciences.

Dull the mind, dull the conscience, and let emotions rule the day. And people listen to this man, they pay lots of money to hear him speak, they forgave him his own moral failures because somehow he manages to convince them that it is okay to walk the moral low ground. It's alright to be mediocre, because we feel okay. Reduce humanity to the lowest common denominator; let people run this world on feelings .....

Monday, March 16, 2009

Is Bill Clinton This Ignorant?

I am reeling from watching this video of an interview with Bill Clinton on stem cell research. Total ignorance on the subject, and this is a man whom people look up to? I wonder how many other subjects he was ignorant of during his presidency of 8 years?




I think these committees need to make it clear that they're not going to fool with any embryos where there is any possibility, even if it is somewhat remote, that they could be fertilized and become human beings ... the definition of which frozen embryos basically would be discarded because they are not going to be fertilized... I believe the American people believe it's a pro life decision to use an embryo that's frozen that's never going to be fertilized for embryonic stem cell research ... those committees need to be really careful to make sure, if they don't want a big storm to be start up here, that any embryos that are used clearly have been placed beyond the pale of being fertilized before they're used, there are plenty, there are large numbers of embryos that we know are never going to be fertilized where the people who are in control of them have made that clear. The research ought to be confined to those and I think the committees will surely do that. That I think is the only area of debate that I sort of saw. - Bill Clinton from the above interview on CNN


Is he serious? I thought perhaps this was a slip of the tongue, but in part two of this interview, Clinton says the same thing no less than SIX times. Is this the level of ignorance of a prominent figure in world affairs? is this also the degree of knowledge of Barack Obama, who just struck down the restrictions on stem cell research? God help us.

If Bill Clinton, who has been spoken multiple times on this topic, is so ignorant that he does not know an embryo is a fertilized egg, I wonder if the rest of the population is equally ignorant. Just in case you or someone else doesn't know:

A fertilized egg that has begun cell division, often called a pre-embryo (for pre-implantation embryo). An embryo is now defined as a later stage, i.e. at the completion of" the pre-embryonic stage, which is considered to end at about day 14. The term, embryo, is used to describe the early stages of fetal growth, from conception to the eighth week of pregnancy. - from http://www.biochem.northwestern.edu/holmgren/Glossary/Definitions/Def-E/embryo.html

Thursday, March 5, 2009

More News on St. Mary's Abortion Talk

For those following the story of the anti-abortion talk at St. Mary's University on February 5, I found this article today in the student newspaper of St. Mary's. It is an interview between the writer (another student presumably) and Holly Taylor, the student who was the main instigator behind the pro-choice protest.

Interview with Holly Taylor

Given the fact that Ms Taylor never heard anything that Jojo Ruba had to say, I wonder how she can make any of her statements? The one I find most unfounded is her claim that Jojo compared women who have abortions to Nazis who killed Jews. Never in any of his talks did Jojo ever make that comparison. If Ms Taylor had listened to his talk, she would realise that the comparison is made between abortion and the holocaust on the basis of the following points:

1. the numbers of deaths involved; in both cases, we are talking millions
2. the victims of both abortion and the holocaust are/were not considered human
3. the bodies of aborted babies and those of the Jews are/were used for experimentation
4. they are/were killed in centres set up for the killing (in abortion - clinics and hospitals; in the holocaust - in concentration camps and gas chambers)
5. their bodies are/were disposed of as waste and not given burial as other "human beings" get

As Mr. Ruba said, if the unborn are not persons, then the comparison simply does not hold; but if they are persons, then the analogy is frighteningly accurate. And he then went on to prove that the unborn are indeed human beings/persons and, as such, deserve human rights.

At no time did Jojo condemn women who had abortions; never did he point a finger at them and accuse them of crimes; what he did do was to argue that abortion is killing on a massive scale and it is hidden from society. If people were to realise that the unborn are indeed human persons, then they would have to accept the fact that we as a society have done exactly the same thing as Nazi Germany did.

Victims - this is the fact that pro-choice people do not want to admit, that their choice has victims. Just as slavery had victims, just as Nazism had victims, the present day victims are those who have no voice, the unborn.

I challenge Holly to listen to the entire argument of Jojo Ruba and then to make her same claims. Unfortunately, she is so intent upon screaming down a speaker who disturbs her, that she can't hear a thing he says.

Latest News on the London Hospital

This article was posted today on LifeSiteNews.

Vatican Review

So, the story first broken by LifeSiteNews has resulted in a Vatican investigation. That is terrific; I am glad to know that the efforts of John Henry Westen and the staff at LSN have got results. This story on the practice of 'early inductions' on babies with lethal fetal anomaly is a startling one, especially since the practice has been going on for 20 years.

Bishop Fabbro told LifeSiteNews not to expect a quick response from the Vatican but he also stated that he "wasn't necessarily going to wait until all of this work had been done before I would be in a position to make changes to the guidelines the hospital is following now."

Keep up the good work, LSN. We depend on you for truth in these matters.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Say it like it is, Mark Steyn




Last night, I was watching a YouTube video of Mark Steyn on the Michael Coren show, the host was not Michael but someone whose last name was Denis. I have never actually listened to Mark Steyn before and I have to say I was more than impressed.

Steyn made several references to the demographic decline of population in the western world and I was curious to know his views on abortion. A google search brought up an article that he wrote in Jewish World Review in 2002. The article is brilliant; if this guy always writes like this, I am going to have to become a follower. Perhaps even buy MacLeans magazine.

Go Forth and Multiply by Mark Steyn

I was struck by this comment:
In abortion as in war, Americans are at odds with their Canadian and European "allies." My colleague Patricia Pearson thinks this is because "Canadians are becoming more tolerant, Americans more conservative" -- conservatism being the opposite of tolerance, presumably.

I have been aware, mainly through experience of 40 Days for Life, that the attitude in Canada differs from the US, but I couldn't put my finger on it. I sensed that we here in Canada, lack a real zeal for the pro life cause, we fall short of the enthusiasm and commitment that I see in our southern neighbour, and I wondered why.

In the US, polls show that Americans are opposed to more abortion; despite the fact that their judges have made most abortions legal, the opinion of the majority of Americans does not support those judges. So you see tremendous turnouts at their Marches for Life; 1/4 of a million people in Washington, DC last month. Given that Canada is 1/10 the size of the US in population, we should expect to see 20,000 at our March for Life. No, last year there were approximately seven to eight thousand people in Ottawa.

Why are Canadians so apathetic about abortion? why have the majority of Canadians taken the attitude that, since it is legal, there is nothing we can do about it so we just have to live with it? There is something in our makeup that makes us sit on the fence; and we have structured our government so that it is almost impossible to oppose issues that are mandated by our law-makers. Everything comes down from the federal level; you can't oppose things on a provincial level, not things that really count.

Just recently, there was news that seven states were considering Personhood Amendments in their houses of representatives; these amendments, if passed, would give rights to all persons, including from conception, yes that means the unborn.
Can we do such a thing in Canada? can we even try to get a petition going on this issue?

I have contacted several people about this, including one member of parliament who recently retired from politics. He told me that a petition of this sort could be organized as a campaign, but that it would be "shot down" in the house and would achieve nothing as our elected government has no intention of addressing the status of the unborn. They have stated that they will stick with the status quo, which is that the unborn child has no rights until it is delivered from its mother, i.e. the baby is fully born and the umbilical cord is cut.

That is like saying, no matter how many people object to something, they can shout and protest all they want, no one will pay attention to them, even if they are a significant number of the population. Forget it, it doesn't matter what you do, no one will pay any attention to you.

It is as if our country is in a kind of quagmire; get used to it; our feet are in cement on this issue and we can't be budged.

More from Mark:
When feminists talk about "women's reproductive rights," they mean the right of women not to reproduce. Fine. That may make sense as a personal decision, but the state has no interest in promoting it generally.

Why? Because the state needs a birth rate of 2.1 children to maintain a stable population. In Italy, it's now 1.2. Twenty years ago, a million babies were born there each year. Now it's half a million. And the fewer babies you have today, the fewer babies are around to have babies in 20 years. Once you're as far down the death spiral as Italy is, it's hard to reverse. Most European races are going to be out of business in a couple more generations.


Steyn goes on to expose the reality of the demographics; if we think our country operates like a hotel, great, we can just let out the empty rooms to new immigrants. But if we think that we should preserve our heritage and our history, forget it, that is not going to happen because we are facing extinction given our current birth rate.

A society whose political class elevates "a woman's right to choose" above "go forth and multiply" is a society with a death wish. So today we're the endangered species, not the spotted owl. We're the dwindling resource, not the oil...We are so bad, so racist, so polluting, so exploitative that we owe it to the world not to be born in the first place.


Steyn peppers his article with stats such as 3 our of 4 pregnancies in Romania were aborted in the 90's. Wow, I knew it was bad in countries bordering Russia, but I didn't know it was that bad. My husband has made two trips to Romania with his geology students and he loves that country; however he did wonder how anyone could have children, given the poverty and the substandard housing that everyone lives in, thanks to Communism. I mean how can you have more than one child in a one-bedroom apartment in a high rise? and it takes both of you to earn enough money for the bare necessities?

With his characteristic wit and sarcasm, Steyn ends with this bit of advice:
Next time you're in a rundown diner and the 17-year-old waitress is eight months pregnant, don't tut "What a tragedy" and point her to the nearest Planned Parenthood clinic. Leave her a large tip instead. She's doing the right thing, not just for her, but for all of us.

Sunday, March 1, 2009

One Play That Should be Scrapped

Every year around this time, universities put on a play entitled the Vagina Monologues.

From Wikipedia:
Eve Ensler wrote the first draft of the monologues in 1996 (there have been several revisions since) following interviews she conducted with 200 women about their views on sex, relationships, and violence against women. The interviews began as casual conversations with her friends, who then brought up anecdotes they themselves had been told by other friends; this began a continuing chain of referrals. In an interview with women.com, Ensler said that her fascination with vaginas began because of "growing up in a violent society."[2]"Women's empowerment is deeply connected to their sexuality." She also stated, "I'm obsessed with women being violated and raped, and with incest. All of these things are deeply connected to our vaginas."

Ensler wrote the piece to "celebrate the vagina." Ensler states that in 1998, the purpose of the piece changed from a celebration of vaginas and femininity to a movement to stop violence against women.


I have never been to see this play and I never will. I refuse. Here is what you can expect to hear at a version of the aforesaid play:

I Was Twelve, My Mother Slapped Me: a chorus describing many young women's and girls' first menstrual period.
My Angry Vagina, in which a woman humorously rants about injustices wrought against the vagina, such as tampons, douches, and the tools used by OB/GYNs
My Vagina Was My Village, a monologue compiled from the testimonies of Bosnian women subjected to rape camps.
The Little Coochie Snorcher That Could, in which a woman recalls memories of traumatic sexual experiences in her childhood and a self-described "positive healing" sexual experience in her adolescent years with an older woman. In the original version, she is 13, but later versions would change her age to 16. This particular skit has sparked numerous controversies and criticisms due to its content (see below).
The Woman Who Loved to Make Vaginas Happy, in which a dominatrix for women discusses the intriguing details of her career and her love of giving women pleasure. In several performances it often comes at the end of the play, literally climaxing with a vocal demonstration of a "triple orgasm."
Because He Liked to Look At It, in which a woman describes how she had thought her pubic area was ugly and had been embarrassed to even think about it, but changed her mind because of a sexual experience with a man named Bob who liked to spend hours looking at it.
I Was There In The Room, a monologue in which Eve Ensler describes the birth of her granddaughter.
Every year a new monologue is added to highlight a current issue affecting women around the world. The monologue is performed at thousands of local V-Day benefit productions of the play that take place annually in February and March raising funds for local groups, shelters, crisis centers working to end violence against women. In 2003, for example, Ensler wrote a new monologue about the plight of women in Afghanistan under Taliban rule. This Monologue is known as "Under the Burqa."


There was a time when words that described body parts were not used in daily language. Many would say that this was because we were repressed; others would say that we were more polite, more modest, rather than repressed. There is something horribly grotesque about the unveiling of private language such as this and flaunting it publicly for all the world to see. I see it as sexuality being reduced to the lowest common denominator, a kind of dumbing-down of women really.

When women are truly empowered, they don't need to shout about their body parts to the world; they usually don't have to shout at all. Women who are at peace with their bodies and their souls are usually too busy living life and relating to people to have the time or the desire to attend plays such as the Vagina Monologues.

My husband, who teaches at a university where this play is put on annually, is always tempted to put up posters for a different sort of play. I wish that, one of these years, he would do it.

The Angina Monologues - A-Day - For Men Only

I bet a lot of middle-aged profs would attend that one.