Thursday, January 30, 2014

Focusing on Personhood of the Unborn

"Ultimately this notion of personhood is grounded in age discrimination. Let's take a one-celled human embryo in contrast to an amoeba. Can either of those two things think? No! So we ask the question that two year olds love to ask Why? Why can't the amoeba think and why can't the human embryo think?
 And the answer to that question is very different. The amoeba can't think because of what it is. It's not within its nature to be a thinking thing. But the one-celled human embryo cannot think because of how old she is.
And if we believe in human rights, then humans get human rights regardless of their age. Personhood is a tool that's being used for the strong to override the rights of the weak, something we've seen time and again in history, where women were denied personhood status, where blacks were denied personhood status, where Jews were denied personhood status. Time and again, throughout history, humans with human rights being deprived of those rights because other humans say they're not persons.
By focusing the conversation on human rights and showing how personhood, in the context of abortion, is merely age discrimination, we'll go far in our encounters. - Stephanie Gray at the 2014 Students for Life of America National Conference


What about rape?

There is nothing more powerful than personal testimony when it comes to the subject of abortion. And when the question of the rape exception is raised, we need to hear from women who have been raped and don't see abortion as the solution. 

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Casual Sex - the Burn Ward

`Casual sex is playing with fire. This movie visits the burn ward.``

Short but to the point, a review that makes me want to see this movie. Gimme Shelter.

Monday, January 27, 2014

Pro-Choice Objections - reply to Angela Hartlin

A friend alerted me to a blog on Huffington Post about the Signs for Life campaign in Halifax Nova Scotia. The post is written by a local resident of the Halifax Dartmouth Municipality, that is no surprise. The amazing internet, spreading word of this campaign with and without our direct efforts.

After my initial reaction to the post, I decided that I should tackle some of her objections to the Luc sign because these are reiterated by pro-choice people ad nauseum. I tried several times to put a comment on Angela's post, but it never gets published. Computer glitch or selective editing, I can't say.

First the link to the post:

And the sign to which she objects:

"I am living in a province where women are still being shamed for making a decision that might be in their personal interest."

As a person wrote who commented on my previous post, does she mean shame or guilt?  Shame is "feeling bad about who or what you are" while guilt is "feeling bad about something that you have done".  It is important to point out the difference here in reactions to this sign. If people are reacting negatively and feeling "shamed", are they in fact feeling guilty at something they have done or something they are about to do?  Let's be honest. If someone is feeling guilty at seeing this sign, they need to deal with their conscience and not point the finger at someone who simply made an obvious statement of fact.

"What if I was raped and became pregnant; as a result I wouldn't be able to bear seeing my rapist's face in a child?  Or maybe, I would be terrified that the cops would attempt to criminalize me, not take action, or maybe the rapist would claim consent and try to gain custody of my child.

The old rape/incest objection being raised yet again. Okay, Angela, for the sake of argument, I will give you the 1 or perhaps even 2% of all pregnancies that result from rape or incest. For the sake of argument, I will say okay let's allow abortion in those cases but let's try to reduce the rest of the abortions. I would bet that Angela would not be happy with that negotiation. Why? I have never met a pro-choice advocate who is against any abortion (even feminists won't speak up about abortion on the basis of sexual preference). In every single case, they will argue that there is some extenuating circumstance and that we shouldn't judge, in every case the woman's rights trump every other right, including any that might belong to the new life she is carrying. In the end, there is not a single case of abortion that pro-choicers will not defend, giving the lie to the statement that they want to reduce abortions.

Here in this little province of Nova Scotia, there are over 1700 abortions performed each year. Let's allow for the 34 abortions that might be the result of rape or incest; Angela, will you work with me to reduce the remaining 1666 abortions? ..........    I thought not.

It's even possible I might be two months into my term and I find out that my fetus, the size of a kidney bean, is growing in my fallopian tube and it will kill me if I do not make a life-saving decision -- will I be condemned for choosing my life versus both of us dying?

I have never heard of any case of an ectopic pregnancy where the mother's life was sacrificed for the child. Even the Catholic Church, which holds the most extreme pro-life position of any Christian denomination, allows for the removal of the fallopian tube in these cases. What they do not allow is the direct killing of the fetus; in saving the mother's life by removing the fallopian tube, the fetus dies but it is not killed directly. Do some further reading on this Angela, because you are not adequately informed.

What if I was a 17-year-old woman who grew up in poverty and has had every social system reject me instead of aiding me toward a better life? Maybe I had to quit school three years earlier to support my family, thought I found love but instead ended up with a deadbeat father and had no means of supporting another body.

Now, Angela resorts to the poverty argument. Let's apply that argument to other "born" children that women may have. Is a woman allowed to kill her two-year-old because she can't afford to look after him/her? If we don't allow women to kill their "born" children  because of poverty, why do we allow them to kill their "unborn" children for that reason? Many a great person has been born into poverty; poverty is not a death sentence; abortion is.

These organizations should be practicing what they are preaching by opening up funds for the few mothers who change their minds about having abortion when poverty is the main reason behind the contemplation, leading rallies promoting adequate care for those who are vulnerable, or adopting and raising every child that was "saved" from abortion.

There are countless pro-life people who do just that, Angela. But I imagine that you aren't meeting them because they are not in your circle of acquaintances. As for adopting and raising the children saved from abortion, the waiting list to adopt an infant in Canada is now 8 years. That is how few infants are being born and being adopted. Young women are either keeping their babies and trying to survive as single moms, or they prefer to terminate the baby's life rather than entrust it to someone else to raise. And I have heard that very statement and not infrequently. Girls would rather abort their babies than give them to someone else to raise. They would rather resort to the violence of abortion than to the risk of adoption. Surely this is a strange twist on being caring.

The real problem is that we think babies should be planned. When a pregnancy comes as a surprise, we think that something has gone wrong and abortion is the solution. The real dilemma is that people are behaving sexually as if there should be no consequences. We don't allow people to drive cars without consequences. If you get into a car and have an accident, you take the consequences even if it was not your fault. But somehow babies don't get the same logic applied to them. If people engage in sexual activity, and a baby results, then the baby has got to go. It wasn't supposed to happen.

However, there is no birth control that is foolproof. And anyone who engages in sexual activity should realise that there might be a pregnancy that occurs and they should be prepared to take responsibility for that life, not just eliminate it. There is an extremely high price to be paid for our sexually liberated lifestyle and it is the children who are paying the price (to paraphrase PD James, author of The Chidren of Men).

Every pro-choice position is in reality a pro-abortion position. Because unless you are actively trying to deter abortions, you are agreeing with the cultural climate that promotes abortion. What we are seeing in our society are people so willing to defend their right to unlimited sexual activity, that they are prepared to pay any price for that - even if the price is someone else's life.


Sunday, January 26, 2014

No such thing as bad publicity

We have all heard that saying. And I have now discovered that it is true.

When put up bus shelter ads and then bus ads in Halifax, we knew there would be some controversy over them. But you can never predict these things until they happen. They are always a little different than you expect.

First Hilary Murphy, a student at St. Mary's University in Halifax, posted an online petition to Metro Transit and to Signs for Life, asking that the signs be taken down because they are offensive and hurtful to women.

To date, her petition has obtained over 1800 signatures. Signs for Life penned a response to the petition stating the purposes of the signs and the fact that there is no intention to remove these signs before Metro Transit takes them down.

You can read the petition here, and scroll down the page to read the reply from Signs for Life to Hilary.

The second reaction came from Allison Sparling, a graduate of Mount St. Vincent University. Allison decided to take a more pragmatic approach to her opposition to the signs. And she has initiated a counter fund-raising campaign with South House to put up signs supporting "Choice" and reproductive rights on the buses. Their goal is to raise $4000 and they are halfway there.

So what is the result of these efforts? As far as I can see, these two ladies have succeeded in spreading word about the Signs for Life campaign to over 3000 people who might not have heard about it otherwise. And because of these counter efforts, Signs for Life has had 10 media interviews, something that would not have happened were it not for them.  Thanks! 

I have posted links to Hilary's and Allison's webpages to give full disclosure. Do I worry that I might be helping them out and getting more support for them? not in the slightest. I refer back to the title of this post.

Saturday, January 25, 2014

A libertarian turns pro-life

An interesting turn of events here. Andrew Klavan, a conservative political commentator, but better known for his novels and screen plays, wrote a column on Wednesday of this week.

His subject - the March for Life. His comments are interesting and the final statements particularly so.

Until quite recently, I was pro-abortion. I opposed Roe V. Wade — I thought it a dishonest decision that robbed the people of their right to settle the matter for themselves. But given the chance to vote on the issue, I would have voted for the greatest possible abortion access. While I myself live according to my conservative lights, I've never felt I have the right to impose those values on others.
I changed my mind about abortion, however, because after debating the issue with pro-lifers over many years, I found I consistently lost the argument.
I’ve changed many of my opinions as I’ve grown wiser with time, but this change was one of the hardest. Not only does it go against my libertarian nature, it also means opposing the passionately held beliefs of some of the people I love most. Several of the women in my circle feel that access to abortion is an essential right.
 Whenever I hear abortion spokespeople defend their position — and I mean, whenever I hear them — they seem to me determined to obscure the real issue. They talk about being “pro-choice,” but who among their opponents is anti-choice? They talk about “women’s health,” but what sinister constituency demands that women be unhealthy? They talk about “protecting a woman’s body,” but it’s not the woman’s body under threat, it’s the body of the baby inside her.
 Okay, aborting a baby might be liberating, empowering and convenient. It might even dramatically improve the future course of your life. But the same could be said about murdering your wife if she’s a big enough pain in the neck. That doesn’t give you the right to do it, and it doesn’t make it the right thing to do.
The only relevant question about abortion is whether an unborn child is or is not a human being. If she is, I do not see how you have the moral right to kill her except in extreme circumstances.
And even if a fetus’s humanity is not yet complete, it’s wise to consider this piece of wisdom from the Clint Eastwood western Unforgiven. When you kill a man, Clint’s character says, you “take away all he’s got and all he’s ever gonna have.” That’s right. We are creatures who exist in time. We are as much what we will be as who we are. A man who’s fast asleep can’t think or choose fully either, but he’ll be well able when morning comes. So it is with an unborn child.
My natural sympathies are with the libertarians on this issue. But logic and moral truth are with the people who marched in Washington Wednesday. And so now I’m with them too.
I was listening to Scott Klusendorf recently; he is the best person for pro-life apologetics, in fact he trains people to do this. Stephanie Gray of the Center for Bio-Ethical Reform got her training with Scott.

Scott says all arguments for abortion can be countered with apologetic logic that he calls by the acronym SLED. All arguments can be countered by meeting these head on.  Size, level of development, environment, and dependency.

Size is pretty self-explanatory. When someone makes the argument that abortion only removes something that is incredibly small (and they make this argument all the time), the response should be what does size have to do with being human? If it does, then it follows that larger people have more value than smaller people. The fetus, while smaller, has everything within it to grow into a recognizable human baby.

Level of development - if we judge the value of human life according to this, then we can move the parameters of our definition whenever we please. An infant is not as developed as a toddler, a toddler not as developed as a teenager, and so on. So it is that a fetus is not as developed as an infant, but it is simply on a different section of its growth vector.

Environment - when does where you are have anything to do with what you are? An 8-inch journey down the birth canal does not have the miraculous effect of turning something living into a human person. It is a person before it begins that journey. The life in the womb is the same as the life outside the womb.

Dependency - we are all dependent upon others for our survival. Diabetics are dependent upon insulin, some people are dependent upon pace-makers for survival, some are dependent upon dialysis to continue living. A baby in the womb is dependent upon its mother for certain things, but so is a new-born. And at the end of our lives, we are mightily dependent upon others for many things. Judging the value of life by the measure of independence leaves us extremely vulnerable to our own definition should our circumstances change.

Andrew Klavan changed his position on abortion when he faced the second, third and fourth parts of Klusendorf's apologetic argument. A resounding Yes to his bravery for following the logic of the argument, despite where it has brought him.

I am convinced that all pro-life strategies have to focus on what is inside the womb in order to change people's hearts and minds. It is when we really understand that this little being is a fellow human that we recognize it is our duty to protect it.


Friday, January 24, 2014

Abortion - Breast Cancer?

Discussing abortion and the possible link with breast cancer with a friend, I found this video. I had heard this woman speak before and was sad to see that she passed away on Dec 3, 2011.

Not everyone who has an abortion will get breast cancer, and not everyone who has breast cancer had an abortion, but the link does seem to be there. And women need to know this. 

May this young woman's testimony not be in vain. RIP Charnette Messe.

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Testimony of a former abortion worker

On Monday, I caught the beginning of a talk on Focus on the Family. The story was told by Kathy Sparks, who once worked at an abortion clinic. She relates how her life went from average happy kid to pro-choice feminist in college, to an early marriage that was nasty, to a suicide attempt, to her redemption by Jesus Christ.

This is a strong story. Kathy now works with Mosaic Ministries in Illinois, a ministry for crisis pregnancy work.

The story has a happy ending. Her husband also had a conversion and together they turned their lives around to work for life, rather than against it.  Kathy Sparks part I

In part 2, Kathy talks about the work of her crisis pregnancy centre. What interested me the most was when she talked about the centre changing from being just a counselling centre to being a medical centre that could provide ultrasounds for pregnant women. In just a few weeks, the use of the ultrasound resulted in 35 women deciding to carry their babies to term. This was 35 out of 36 women; only one went ahead and had an abortion.{7D427101-4E5F-41FF-8E82-E0588BB0F13B}
Kathy Sparks part II

Some remarks that stick in my mind:
When people say that abortion is to help poor women, Kathy says she has never met an abortion doctor who did an abortion for free.

Every day, in her clinic, Kathy flushed 40 babies down a toilet into the city sewer.

Every abortion took from 5 to 8 minutes to perform, and the abortionist would get impatient if the staff didn't keep up with getting things done that quickly.

There were three rooms in which abortions were done; three doctors worked at the same time, round the clock. There was not sufficient room for women to even sit down after the procedure; some were laying on the floor, covered by a light blanket until they were able to walk out.

Many days, they did 40-50 abortions and sometimes stayed open in the evenings to do 10 more, six days a week.

When people talk about the war on women, do they have any idea what goes on inside these clinics?
These doctors are not concerned with women's health; their driving motive is financial.

Here in Canada, we don't hear these stories because most of our abortions are done inside hospitals and the reality is hidden from public view. Pro-lifers can't even get close to see what is really going on in those wards. But I find it hard to believe that Canadian doctors are driven by empathy for women; they are just like their American counterparts, in it for the money.

To Cohabit or Not to Cohabit

A very good post by Sarah.  I would hope that all young women would read this and think about it long and hard.

As one of my daughters said to me "living with X was the worst decision in my life".  Fortunately she has moved past that and is now happily married to Y. 

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Andrew Cuomo acting like Hitler in NY

Secularism is not just a religion for atheist and agnostics, but every practical atheist – every religious believer who doesn’t live any differently than the culture prescribes. Any Christian who isn’t constantly challenged by the mandates of the Gospel and the precepts of his faith contributes to the tsunami of secularism. Too many of us all too often fall into this category, some as a matter of fallen nature and bad habits, others as a matter of lukewarm faith and utter indifference. Make no mistake: We make it easier for politicians to push religious faith to the margins.
Don’t let Andrew Cuomo get away with claiming he speaks for the women of New York state. Drs. Anne Nolte and Elissa Sanchez-Speach are among the doctors who have spoken out against his abortion-expansion push. Does the governor really believe that elected representative Nicole Malliotakis should not live, never mind hold public office in the Empire State simply because she disagrees with him on fundamental moral and political issues? Would he have the New York State Catholic Conference – a longtime, vocal opponent of his abortion-expansion push – close up shop? Mercifully, it’s not up to him. Pro-lifers still have the freedom to live in New York and are not packing their bags.

This from a state whose capital city, New York, has the highest abortion rate in the country. A full 60% of all pregnancies are aborted there, with the majority of those being black or Hispanic.

This is the Andrew Cuomo who attends Catholic Mass with his mistress and comes up to receive Communion and has not been reprimanded by any clergy that I know of. Perhaps if priests and bishops took seriously the responsibility that they have, things would not have gotten this extreme.

Friday, January 17, 2014

Glenn Beck interviews mother of twins

Great story, as Beck lets us know adoption is an answer to prayer for couples who want children, but can't have them. The Christian woman in this video is a great example of a pro-life protester who follows through with her actions. 

Must See Ad

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Life in the Womb - when does life begin?

I have been quite surprised by some comments made to the bus ad campaign. A number of people have posted that the claim that life begins at conception is false and the Signs for Life group has been accused of disseminating false information in order to pursue their pro-life agenda.

It makes me wonder if these people were absent from school when basic biology was taught?  Perhaps these basic facts were never taught. Perhaps there is an agenda on the part of the education system to keep people uninformed and ignorant of the basic facts of life.

Fertilization is the fusing of the gametes, that is a sperm cell and an ovum (egg cell), to form a zygote. At this point, the zygote is genetically unique from either of its parents. Many members of the medical community accept fertilization as the point at which life begins. Dr. Bradley M. Patten from the University of Michigan wrote in Human Embryology that the union of the sperm and the ovum "initiates the life of a new individual" beginning "a new individual life history." In the standard college text book Psychology and Life, Dr. Floyd L. Ruch wrote "At the time of conception, two living germ cells—the sperm from the father and the egg, or ovum, from the mother—unite to produce a new individual." Dr. Herbert Ratner wrote that "It is now of unquestionable certainty that a human being comes into existence precisely at the moment when the sperm combines with the egg." This certain knowledge, Ratner says, comes from the study of genetics. At fertilization, all of the genetic characteristics, such as the color of the eyes, "are laid down determinatively." James C. G. Conniff noted the prevalence of the above views in a study published by the New York Times Magazine in which he wrote, "At that moment conception takes place and, scientists generally agree, a new life begins—silent, secret, unknown."[15]
 ^ Rice, Charles (1969). The Vanishing Right to Live. Garden City, NY: Doubleday & Company, Inc. pp. 29–31. 

If someone is supporting their pro-choice viewpoint by denying scientific facts, their argument is extremely weak. It would be better to simply state that they are pro-choice despite any biological facts that exist. They are then in the realm of claiming a fetus may be a human being, but they will deny it personhood - and that is a philosophical argument, not a scientific one.

It is a biological fact that species produce according to their own kind; in other words, dogs have puppies, cats have kittens, horses have foals, and humans have human babies. What else could the fetus in the womb be except a human being? 

As for the presence of genetic material, one commentator pooh-poohed the idea that the colour of the baby's eyes were determined at fertilization, that its sex was determined, that the shape of its nose was determined. The study of genetics has already established that the egg contributes 23 chromosomes from the mother, the sperm contributes 23 chromosomes from the father and this means the fertilized egg has 46 chromosomes which determine every genetic trait for that being.

Also a very basic reading of any article on in-vitro fertilization dispels the claim that life does not begin with fertilization. People who are using in vitro fertilization to get pregnant know very well that the implanted fertilized egg is already their baby, that may or may not survive within the womb. They would certainly never agree to have unfertilized eggs implanted; that would be entirely useless. And of course the world of in vitro fertilization raises the moral problem that many pro-lifers have with it:  what to do with all those frozen embryos that have been created and are not being implanted in a uterus to come to term and be born? 

The Catholic Church would have no problem with in vitro fertilization if those fertilized eggs were not human beings.

So if you are pro-choice and are using biology to back up your position, please do us all the favour of getting informed and educating yourself about these things. Simply shouting at pro-lifers that they have the facts wrong will only damage yourself in the long run, as your argument is based on untruth.

One does not have to be religious to be pro-life; in fact, many pro-life advocates were people who were convinced by the science of reproduction. Bernard Nathanson, one of the founders of the abortion group NARAL, was just one of those such people. It was his study of fetology with the invention of ultrasound that made him change his position of being completely pro-abortion to being completely pro-life.

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Pro Life Bus Ads in Halifax

Great progress made in Halifax for pro-life. 

The bus ad campaign made the 6 o'clock news on CTV, because one of the pro-choice protesters organized an online petition against the ads. Honestly, you couldn't buy that kind of advertising!

Stephanie Potter comes on just before the 9 minute mark. Jayson Baxter interviews both Hilary Murphy the SMU student who began the petition and Stephanie, one of the Signs for Life team members.

While some might think such a reaction would be dismaying, it brings public awareness of the abortion issue to a whole segment of the population that couldn't be reached any other way.  With the local evening news, when thousands are turning on their television sets to hear what has happened in Halifax and Nova Scotia today.

If you would like to receive more information on this campaign, please email Signs for Life and ask to receive their newsletter. 

Email address is

As Luc's mother said "little man, you are going to change some hearts". 

Thursday, January 9, 2014

Invitation to Crisis Pregnancy Centre open house

January 31 at 7 pm

An open house reception at the Open Door Centre, formerly the Halifax Pregnancy Care Centre.

Come and meet the new director, Heather Harmon, and the new board of directors. 

Come and hear about the new programs and services to be launched in 2014. 

Come and meet like-minded believers who are joining together in this vital ministry.

RSVP by phone to  902-422-8539 

or by email to

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Pro Life Bus Ads in Halifax

This month, all 255 buses in Halifax are carrying this pro-life poster.

And the reaction on Twitter is swift and emotional. One theme throughout the tweets is negative reaction to Metro Transit allowing pro-life ads when they wouldn't put up atheist ads last year. However, a couple of people answered that by saying the case went to court and the atheists won their case. I recall seeing some atheist ads on the outside of buses last Christmas.

What constantly surprises me is the negative reaction to a basic biological fact - Luc's life did begin nine months before he was born into the world. The ad does not say Luc was a person nine months ago, it simply states when his life began. Why is it that pro-choicers cannot admit this fact that is written into every medical text?  They can say they don't believe Luc was a person; we are not arguing that philosophical point. We are simply stating something that people who support abortion do not want to admit:  the fact that this baby is a live organism during its entire time in the womb. It really is quite ignorant to deny such a basic fact. Surely their argument against being pro-life should be based on something more factual than their visceral reaction to this simple statement.

One tweet said that they thought the money spent could have been better used on the poor and needy. Yes, it is being used on the poor and needy. Who could be poorer or more needy than a child in the womb who has no one to defend its life?  Since one in three pregnancies ends in abortion, the womb is the most unsafe place in the world to be. These ads are meant to disturb people, because they are standing up for those who cannot defend themselves. Yes, the money was actually spent on the poor and needy.

Here are some tweets.

"The BS in advertising is legendary. I would love to see all ads undergo a fact-check"

"I want to buy ads that say 'thanks for making me feel guilty about wanting the human right of body autonomy.'"

"What about freedom? Should others' messages be restricted because we don't agree with them?"

And one young woman asked people to sign up if they wished to put up a reproductive rights ad on the buses. Little does she know how much these ads cost. Someone tweeted that the ads were free for non-profit groups.

Imagine their surprise if they should inquire into the cost of ads; no advertising comes free, unless you have a sponsor paying the shot. These ads are the result of about a hundred people donating money, for which they don't even receive a tax receipt. Yes, there is a large contingent of pro-life supporters in Halifax who are very happy to see the silence on abortion being broken.

Broken with a beautiful photo of a newborn baby just as he has taken his first breath.

As Luc's mom said "Little man, you are going to change some hearts." 

Change always begins with some kind of disturbance.

Average age of abortionists

The Bakersfield FPA abortionist, Vernon P. Wagner, 74, has been responsible for multiple life-threatening abortion-related medical emergencies over the years, most recently in February and August, 2013 and in August and October, 2012. Wagner was also involved in the death of Tami Suematsu in 1988, who died of an asthma attack that sent her into cardiac arrest as Wagner continued abortions on other patients.

From these reports of botched abortions, it would seem that the average age of abortion doctors in the US is quite old. These are "doctors" past retirement age. What does this indicate?

If the majority of abortionists are senior citizens, we can deduce that younger doctors are not becoming abortionists. This is evidence that abortion is endorsed by those in their senior years, and not so much by people under the age of 40. 

As one pro-choice feminist said of the pro-life crowd at the March for Life last year:  "My God, they are all so young!"

As some have said, abortionists seem to be doctors who are not held in high regard by their peers; they seem to be the doctors who don't excel in other fields of medicine.