It could hardly be more of what we used to call an “open and shut” case. Nidal Hasan, an active duty Army major and psychiatrist, walked into a room at Fort Hood, Texas, shouting “Allahu Akbar!” and shot thirty people, killing fourteen. One of his victims, Francheska Velez, was pregnant at the time.
She cried out “My baby! My baby!” but Hasan killed her and her unborn child anyway. The Obama administration has elected not to charge Hasan with violation of the Unborn Victims of Violence Act, even though the law was passed explicitly to cover such instances.
The Fort Hood shootings occurred in November 2009. Hasan is only now slated to be brought before a court martial. The proceedings are scheduled to begin by July 1st, three and a half years after the killings. The old maxim is: “Justice delayed is justice denied.” The foot-dragging on the part of the Obama administration in this case is unconscionable.
Because of these interminable delays, Hasan has been allowed to accumulate some $278,000 in pay and benefits as he awaits his court martial. Army spokesmen say Hasan has “earned” that much because he has not yet been convicted of anything and we must presume his innocence.
Must we presume it for three and a half years? It’s useful to compare the Obama administration’s treatment of Nidal Hasan with the Roosevelt administration’s actions toward captured Nazi saboteurs in World War II.
Eight German and German-American fighters in two squads were landed in June 1942, by U-boats on the beaches of Florida and Long Island. The Long Island group was spotted by a young U.S. Coast Guardsman. Seaman John C. Cullen refused a bribe from the Nazis and alerted his superiors back at his station. Because they had changed into civilian clothes, the saboteurs would be regarded as spies if apprehended.
Apprehended they soon were, as one of their number, George Dash, ratted out his cohorts. They had orders from their Nazi superiors to blow up war industries and military installations. By order of President Roosevelt, they were tried before a secret military tribunal on July 2, 1942.
Matters moved quickly for [Army Judge Advocate General Myron C.] Cramer since he and [U.S. Attorney General Francis] Biddle began presenting evidence to the tribunal on July 8. Preliminary arguments and the taking of testimony took 16 days—an average of two days for each accused. The military commission completed its work on August 1, when it found all eight defendants guilty of “attempting to commit sabotage, espionage, and other hostile acts” and “conspiracy” to commit these same offenses. Cramer and Biddle argued that the Germans must be sentenced to death, and the commission agreed. Roosevelt approved the death sentence for six of the eight men, and those six were electrocuted on August 8, 1942. The other two were imprisoned and later deported to Germany after the war. The U.S. Supreme Court later upheld the jurisdiction of the military commission, and the lawfulness of its proceedings, in the case of Ex parte Quirin, which continues to be cited with approval by today’s Supreme Court.
Cramer’s work as co-prosecutor was praised by his superior as “historic evidence of his legal ability and sound judgment.” He and Biddle had successfully completed the first military commission convened by a President and had achieved the best possible results for the government.
I am not necessarily endorsing capital punishment in this column. FRC has not taken a position on that question. But clearly this was no drumhead court martial. Instead, it was a serious and expeditious judicial proceeding. Our government was then able to act with speed and justice in prosecuting our enemies in wartime “to the full extent of the law.”
Nidal Hasan was known to federal investigators. He had been under surveillance for some time. As a medical graduate student, he had openly advocated jihad and justified killing “infidels.” And still he was allowed to continue in uniform as a major in the Army.
Even after his murderous spree in 2009, political correctness was not furloughed. The Army’s Chief of Staff, General George Casey, rushed to the Sunday TV talk shows and said: “As great a tragedy as this was, it would be a shame if our diversity became a casualty as well.” What the general seems not to have understood is that it is only by enforcing the Oath of Office that all service members voluntarily take that we can have the level of trust for all our troops that a vigorous national defense requires.
While Nidal Hasan continues to accrue pay and benefits, this administration has classified his killings as “workplace violence.” Thus, his injured victims have been denied Purple Hearts and the status of combat-wounded veterans. A bi-partisan group of congressmen, including Reps. Tom Rooney (R-Fla.), Frank Wolf (R-Va.) and Chaka Fattah (D-Penn.) have written to Defense Sec. Chuck Hagel urging him to re-classify theFortHood killings as “combat-related.”
CLICK LIKE IF YOU’RE PRO-LIFE!
This would seem to be the bare minimum this administration could do to show it is serious about the defense of theUnited States. And it could also benefit from reading how their great liberal Democratic model, Franklin D. Roosevelt, acted in time of war.
LifeNews Note: Robert Morrison writes for the Family Research Council. Morrison was educated in New York Public schools and earned his B.A. and M.A. degrees in government and foreign affairs from the University of Virginia. He has also done graduate work in education at Hofstra University and in history and communications at the University of Washington. Since coming to Washington in 1984, Bob has served at the U.S. Department of Education with Gary Bauer under then-Secretary William Bennett. He was the first full-time Washington, D.C. representative of The Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod.
London, England (LiveActionNews) — One of the ways that abortion advocates like to claim that abortion is “health care” is by claiming that it can sometimes be necessary for the health of the mother, or to save her life. Included in the “health of the mother” argument is mental health, because some women could become suicidal if not permitted to have an abortion. In such a situation, a woman should clearly be allowed to have an abortion, right?
Consider the case of “SB,” a British woman with a history of severe mental health problems, who just got legal permission to have an abortion at 23 weeks pregnant because she claims she would kill herself if forced to carry the baby.
The woman, known only as “SB”, is currently staying in a secure mental health facility, but appeared in court to make a direct plea to the judge. Her identity and the name of the health authority cannot be reported.
Justice Holman disagreed with the assessment of her doctors, mother and husband that SB was not capable of deciding and said it would be “a total affront” to her autonomy to say she could not.
He added: “The patient perfectly understands what’s involved in a termination… she perfectly understands the finality of the event.”
The background on this case? This was a planned pregnancy. SB has a history of bipolar disorder, paranoid delusions, and schizophrenia, which she had been able to manage with medication. She stopped taking it, though, when she became pregnant, and then claimed she wanted an abortion. Not only did her family and her husband say that she was not capable of understanding what she was choosing to do, but so did her doctors – yet the judge ruled in her favor anyway. She’s also tried to kill her husband twice.
Does this sound like a sane woman capable of making such a monumental decision?
SB’s case aside, what about your average woman who claims to be suicidal if forced to carry her baby?
The simple fact of the matter is, someone who is truly suicidal is not in a mentally fit state of mind. She is not capable of making rational decisions, and so how is it acceptable to allow her to make a decision that will forever change her life, but also rob another human being of his or hers? Someone who comes into an abortion clinic claiming to be suicidal needs psychiatric help.
If SB had said she would kill herself unless her husband was shot in the head, she would have been treated for her mental illness, not given a loaded gun. If she had said she would kill herself if she couldn’t cut her arm off, she would have been given psychiatric help, not handed a hacksaw. But in the case of an abortion, we’re supposed to just give the suicidal person what she wants and then send her on their way? This is especially mind-boggling considering that abortion increases the risks of mental health issues like depression and suicide!
People suffering from suicidal thoughts need help, as they are clearly suffering from a mental illness. And a mentally ill person cannot consent to an abortion.
LifeNews Note: Cassy Fiano is a twenty-something Florida native now living in Jacksonville, North Carolina who writes at a number of conservative web sites. She got her start in journalism at the Florida Times-Union. She is the mother of two sons, one of whom was diagnosed with Down Syndrome. This originally appeared at Live Action News.
I don’t think I could have found anything less “scientific” from a website called “ScienceAlert.” A group in Australia has taken up the challenge of reforming the laws regarding “left-over” IVF embryos there. Currently, many embryos are destroyed every year because of mandatory storage limits.
This group began the “Enhancing Reproductive Opportunity Research Project” to address the concerns of women over the destruction of their embryos mandated by law.
It sounds like a good idea. From ScienceAlert:
We found that current IVF rules on issues such as storage limits and destruction practices are intrusive and disrespectful. Mandatory time limits in some states compel destruction of stored embryos after ten years, for instance, while rules in other states prevent a surviving partner from deciding on the use or donation of embryos.
So what did this group decide after surveying 400 couples in over 20 clinics across Australia? This:
We don’t believe that embryos should be granted a moral or legal significance in and of themselves as distinct entities. Rather, their value is relational – embryos matter because of what they mean to those for whom they were generated. This meaning is intensely personal, and infinitely variable.
What? Embryos only matter because of how their parents feel about them? Their moral status is “infinitely variable?” What drivel!
I thought to myself who came up with this most nonobjective analysis of the moral and legal status of the human embryo? It looks to be a group of highly-educated women. I should have been tipped off when ScienceAlert reported that this was a “feminist-oriented approach.” I wonder how this group would take to someone asserting that their worth was only defined by the value that men gave them.
Frankly, I feel insulted by this conclusion. Could a group of women with a feminist approach not come up with something with more objectivity and clarity? Is this not simply playing into the stereotype of women making decisions on feelings instead of reason? I know plenty of smart women who could come up with something more substantial and less capricious.
CLICK LIKE IF YOU’RE PRO-LIFE!
I suppose this is a symptom of the illness of our times. We live in a world where the unborn have no worth unless their parents “feel” that they do. It is true that in our arguably uncivilized society, the unborn’s value is “relational.”
We need to be reminded that we are not talking about human beings in the abstract, but real human organisms that just happen to be our own offspring. How disconnected have we become that we can call the value of our own children “infinitely variable?”
Weeks after the IRS scandal erupted over its targeting of pro-life and conservative groups, the Internal Revenue Service has finally taken action.
As National Review first reported today, Lois Lerner, the Internal Revenue Service’s director of exempt organizations, has been placed on administrative leave.
Lerner on Thursday afternoon sent an e-mail to employees in the exempt-organizations division she oversees stating, “Due to the events of recent days, I am on administrative leave starting today. An announcement will be made shortly informing you who will be acting while I am on administrative leave. I know all of you will continue to support EO’s mission during these difficult times.” She concluded, “I thank you for all your hard work and dedication,” adding, “The work you do is important.”
At a House oversight-committee hearing yesterday, Lerner invoked her Fifth Amendment right and refused to answer questions posed to her by lawmakers, stating only, “I did nothing wrong.” She has been at the center of the scandal roiling the IRS and the Obama administration since she clumsily planted the question that allowed her to reveal — and apologize for — the agency’s improper targeting of tea-party and other conservative groups.
CNN provided more:
She publicly revealed the targeting two weeks ago in her answer to a planted question at a bar association event in Washington shortly before an inspector general report on the matter was made public.
Lerner appeared before the House Oversight Committee on Wednesday and stated she had not broken any laws or agency regulations. She then invoked her Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination and declined to answer questions.
Republicans questioned whether she waived that right by making her opening statement.
Committee Chairman Darrell Issa will call her back to testify before the committee, his spokesman said earlier on Thursday.
Before this, the agency hadn’t officially reprimanded a single staffer over it.
With the scandal concerning the IRS and its targeting of pro-life and conservative groups growing, national conservative activists held nationwide rallies today at IRS offices across the country.
Reports indicate President Barack Obama’s top attorney knew in April that the Internal Revenue Service was targeting pro-life and conservative groups. The reports show Obama’s top lawyer was notified in April that the Treasury Department’s inspector general had finished an audit of the IRS over the allegations.
The news comes as a report shows James Dobson, the pro-life family advocate, disclosed that he was a victim of IRS discrimination because he spoke out against pro-abortion President Barack Obama.
Obama addressed the massive IRS scandal and promised it would never happen again.
“I’ll do everything in my power to make sure this never happens again,” he promised.
The chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee announced he will hold a hearing on the IRS scandal this week. The federal agency has targeted pro-life groups as well as conservative and religious organizations.
In one case LifeNews has profiled, a pro-life group was told it had to promote abortion. A top pro-life legal group also informed LifeNews that cases it handled support mounting accusations that demonstrate the agency’s abuse of pro-life organizations.
Forced abortions run rampant in nations like China and India and a new report out this week has a woman claiming two nurses at a medical center forced her to have an abortion.
A 25-year-old pregnant woman in Kanpur Dehat says Community Health Centre, Pukhrayan broke the Medical Termination of Pregnancy (MTP) Act and forced her to have an abortion. The health department is reportedly looking into the case of a woman named Neetu , a resident of Pulinder village, who made the claims.
Not only did the nurses force her abortion, Neetu says they also charged her and her husband Dharmendra Rs 1,000 and asked him to arrange IV fluid and other medicines to provide her medical care related to the forced abortion.
Chief Medical Officer Dr Karn Singh, however, denied the allegations. He claimed that pregnancy was terminated with the consent of Neetu’s husband. He also went on to claim that the abortion was conducted by two qualified doctors Dr Sanjiv Kumar and Dr Anita Kumari and the nurses were merely assisting them in the Operation Theatre (OT).
Regarding the allegation of bribery, Chief Medical Officer Dr Singh assured that “a probe would be set up and guilty would not be spared”. He also said a probe would be initiated to look into the circumstances surrounding the abortion.
When TOI contacted Dr Sanjiv Kumar, he denied any such case being reported at the CHC on Wednesday. “I did not come across any such patient at the CHC on Wednesday so there is no question of issuing a BST slip.”
Family members claimed that Neetu was five-month pregnant and had been bleeding since Tuesday evening. On Wednesday morning, they rushed the patient to the CHC.
Talking to TOI, Neetu’s husband, Dharmendra said that she was admitted to the hospital at around 7 am. By afternoon she was rushed to the operation theatre where the baby was aborted. Prior to the operation, no Bed Stay Treatment (BST) slip was issued,” he claimed.
The incident came to light when the patient’s family members apprised senior CHC authorities of the incident.
A new report just released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has good news regarding the substantial decline in teen births from 2007 through 2011. The report shows teen birth rates dropped nationwide, declining in almost every state.
While the drop in the rate of teen births began in 1991, the current report indicates the years from 2007-2011 as the longest timeframe in which the precipitous drop has been maintained.
In all but two states, there has been a 15% decline in teen births showing widespread success in reaching teens throughout the country. The most dramatic drops were among Hispanic youth, followed by African American teens.
“The good news here is that teens are showing they are listening to the messages we are giving regarding the benefits of delaying sexual initiation and childbearing in order to pursue their dreams for broader life success,” noted Valerie Huber, CEO and President of the National Abstinence Education Association (NAEA).
Huber told LifeNews: “Waiting for sex is the best way to avoid teen pregnancy and the only way to avoid all the possible consequences of teen sex. ”
“All states but West Virginia and North Dakota showed significant drops over five years. But the Mountain States of Arizona, Colorado, Idaho, Nevada and Utah saw rates fall by 30 percent or more,” AP noted. “In 22 states, teen Hispanic birth rates plunged at least 40 percent, which was described as “just amazing,” by the report’s lead author, Brady Hamilton of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.”
From an AP report on the numbers:
The new report focuses on state figures in 2011:
— Lowest rates are in New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Connecticut and Vermont, each with rates under 17 per 1,000.
CLICK LIKE IF YOU’RE PRO-LIFE!
— Highest rates overall continue to be in the South, led by Arkansas and Mississippi, each with rates of about 50 per 1,000. In Arkansas, the majority of teen births are to white moms. In Mississippi, the majority are black.
— White teens continue to have the lowest birth rate nationally — about 22 births per 1,000. Black teens saw a larger improvement, but their rate was still more than twice the white rate, at 47 per 1,000.
— Overall, the Hispanic rate plummeted from 75 to 49 per 1,000, now virtually a tie with the black rate.
During a hearing on a bill that would ban late-term abortions nationwide, an expert on human embryonic development informed members of the committee that unborn babies have the capacity to feel pain as early as 8 weeks.
Maureen Condic, Ph.D. is an Associate Professor of Neurobiology and Anatomy at the University of Utah and obtained her Ph.D. from University of California, Berkeley. She is a widely published scientist whose works have appeared in a wide variety of peer-reviewed journals.
“The earliest “rudiment” of the human nervous system forms by 28 days (four weeks) after sperm – egg fusion. At this stage, the primitive brain is already “patterned”; i.e. cells in different regions are specified to produce structures appropriate to their location in the nervous system as a whole,” she told lawmakers.
Dr. Condic explained, “Over the next several weeks, the brain will grow enormously and generate many complex connections, but the overall organization of the nervous system is established by four weeks. This is significant because it shows that even at this early stage, the brain is not anything like a mere collection of cells or a “blank slate” to be written upon by later developmental processes. Like all embryonic organs, the structure of the early brain “anticipates” the function of the mature system.”
When it comes to pain specifically, scientific evidence is very clear that pain can be experienced by 20 weeks of pregnancy. But Condic said unborn children have a capacity to feel pain much earlier.
“The neural circuitry responsible for the most primitive response to pain, the spinal reflex, is in place by 8 weeks of development,” she explained. “This is the earliest point at which the fetus experiences pain in any capacity.”
At that point, the scientist confirmed “a fetus responds just as humans at later stages of development respond; by with withdrawing from the painful stimulus.”
By 8-10 weeks, Dr. Condic says many of the neural connections are formed.
“This indicates that the brain is “wiring” itself in the first trimester, well before reaching the fetal stage of life. Early establishment of connections between neurons further indicates that brain formation is an active process of progressively building the structures and relationships required for mature brain function,” she confirmed.
“To experience pain, a noxious stimulus must be detected. The neural structures necessary to detect noxious stimuli are in place by 8-10 weeks of human development,” the researcher continued. “There is universal agreement that pain is detected by the fetus in the first trimester. The debate concerns how pain is experienced ; i.e., whether a fetus has the same pain experience a newborn or an adult would have. While every individual’s experience of pain is personal, a number of scientific observations address what brain structures are necessary for a mental or psychological experience of pain.”
CLICK LIKE IF YOU’RE PRO-LIFE!
Knowing the unborn child feels pain early in pregnancy, Condic says the question is what to do then.
“Imposing pain on any pain-capable living creature is cruelty. And ignoring the pain experienced by another human individual for any reason is barbaric. We don’t need to know if a human fetus is self- reflective or even self- aware to afford it the same consideration we currently afford other pain – capable species. We simply have to decide whether we will choose to ignore the pain of the fetus or not,” she concludes.
Read Dr. Condic’s full testimony at http://judiciary.house.gov/hearings/113th/05232013/Condic%2005232013.pdf
Scarlett Crowther was born with half a heart. She may not have made it at all had her mom decided to have an abortion, but Scarlett’s mother rejected that idea.
Scarlett was given a 50/50 chance of surviving the defect but went through two successful heart operations, with one of them coming at five days after birth. Now 10 months later, mother and baby are doing much better, with her mother Rebecca Turner calling her a “little fighter.”
From a report in The Sun:
Rebecca found out Scarlett had the defect, called hypoplastic left heart syndrome, at her 20-week scan.
It meant the left side of Scarlett’s heart did not develop in the womb.
CLICK LIKE IF YOU’RE PRO-LIFE!
Full-time mum Rebecca was given the option to terminate, but chose to carry on with the pregnancy.
Days after Scarlett was born in June last year, she had a seven-and-a-half hour op at Alder Hey Children’s Hospital in Merseyside.
Surgeons put an artificial tube inside her to help the blood flow to her heart.
Scarlett had more major surgery at eight months when docs attached a vein from her neck to her heart in an eight-and-a-half hour op.
Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia (CFAM) — When Melinda Gates declared that family planning for poor women would be her signature issue, she named her campaign “No Controversy.”
“We’re not talking about abortion” or population control, said the wife of billionaire Bill Gates. With that assurance, presidents of poor countries consented to Gates’ campaign. They even agreed to help fund the programs, topping off the $4.6 billion raised for Melinda’s initiative at a Summit held in London last year.
Now that attempt to distance Gates from abortion will be hard to maintain.
Next week Melinda will speak at Women Deliver. The global conference held in Kuala Lumpur, hosted by groups that advocate abortion as a method of family planning, intends to build on the momentum of the Gates Summit. Several sessions focus on training attendees how to promote abortion along with family planning, particularly in poor countries and where it is illegal.
Other speakers include partial-birth abortionist LeRoy Carhart and utilitarian philosopher Peter Singer who encourages infanticide.
LeRoy Carhart became famous for suing to overturn a ban on partial-birth abortion, an especially brutal procedure in which Carhart delivers a fully-formed baby until only the head is in the mother. He then stabs the baby in the neck and suctions out the baby’s brains to cause her death.
Carhart lost when the U.S. Supreme Court upheld the ban in 2007.
Recently Carhart was in the news when a young mother died from internal bleeding after he committed a late-term abortion on her 33-week baby. Another young woman with Down syndrome died after he performed a late-term abortion a few years ago. Last month he was caught telling a potential patient, “I’ve never had to send anyone to the hospital.”
Women Deliver describes Carhart as a “human rights defender.” Workshops will train attendees on how to present abortion as if it were a human right, and treat regulations as obstacles to be eliminated or ignored. While referred to as a woman’s right, unregulated abortion actually benefits abortionists like Carhart by removing penalties for harming women and babies.
While Carhart will speak at a break-out session, Women Deliver organizers have tapped utilitarian philosopher Peter Singer to address the entire audience. The ethics professor, who believes the idea of the sanctity of life is outdated, has sparked protests by disability activists for encouraging euthanasia.
Singer believes no infant should be considered a person until 30 days after birth and that “killing a newborn baby is never equivalent to killing a person.” An unborn child deserves no greater protection than a cow, he says, because a baby’s mental capacity is inferior to those of cows. Abortion is justified to curb overpopulation.
He surprised even his critics when he argued bestiality can be mutually satisfying.
CLICK LIKE IF YOU’RE PRO-LIFE!
Singer will coach the Women Deliver audience of up to 5,000 people on how to “drive social change.”
Critics of Melinda Gates’ initiative were initially suspicious because of the groups that were chosen as partners. These groups that would implement her campaign advocate and commit abortions and have history of abusive population control programs. Many of these groups are also partners of the Women Deliver conference, such as International Planned Parenthood Federation, UNFPA and Population Action.
LifeNews Note: Wendy Wright writes for the Catholic Family and Human Rights Institute. This article originally appeared in the pro-life group’s Friday Fax and is used with permission.
One suicide begets another, a study in Canada has demonstrated.
That suicide is contagious is a widely held–and controversial–theory. A groundbreaking new study co-authored by a University of Ottawa researchers has found that teens who know of a schoolmate who died of suicide are far more likely to think about or attempt suicide than those with no “exposure.”
”It’s solid evidence that supports a theory that has been around for a long time–that suicide contagion is real,” says Dr. Ian Colman, Canada Research Chair in Mental Health Epidemiology at the University of Ottawa, who wrote the paper with Sonja Swanson of the Harvard School of Public Health. “I hope schools and school boards take it seriously.”
Me too, but not just schools–although the suicides by teenagers are particularly tragic.
If suicide is “contagious” than so too assisted suicide–which is actively promoted far and wide in the media as “taking control” or “death with dignity.” Indeed, the infectious effect could even be more penetrating throughout general society: When a state or country legalizes assisted suicide/euthanasia, the culture is explicitly stating that some self-killings are A-OK.
CLICK LIKE IF YOU’RE PRO-LIFE!
If my suspicions are correct, the recent spike in suicides–especially bad in Oregon–may at least be indirectly fueled by assisted suicide advocacy–which is actually suicide promotion. In this sense, why are we surprised when an increasingly a pro-suicide culture has a general problem with suicide. At the very least, it does nothing to abate or reduce the problem.
LifeNews.com Note: Wesley J. Smith, J.D., is a special consultant to the Center for Bioethics and Culture and a bioethics attorney who blogs at Secondhand Smoke.
Tim and Gabi and I discuss what it actually means to be open-minded, (it does NOT mean being wishy-washy,) and whether pro-life people should be open-minded too.
Bonus Audio: After wrapping up four Life Report episodes, Tim and Gabi and I hung out to cover some material we didn’t have time to get into earlier in the day.
Those topics include some clarification questions about Tim’s 1 Cor 13 piece and whether it conflicts with the work of Stand to Reason and Live Action, a discussion of pro-life memes and why most of them are bad, and practical tips for loving pro-life people that we disagree with on politics, strategy or tactics.
- Watch our other episodes with Timothy Brahm.
- Check out Tim’s work.
- Support Tim’s work.
- Read the De Facto Guardian paper that Josh referenced, with the new response to pro-choice bodily rights arguments.
LifeNews.com Note: Josh Brahm is the educational director for Right to Life of Central California and the host of Life Report, also a LifeNews pro-life video feature. Find more episodes of Life Report at ProLifePodcast.net.
Women Deliver, a global conference on maternal health, has tapped pro-infanticide philosopher Peter Singer and partial-birth abortionist LeRoy Carhart to train family planning advocates. While the conference purports to address health needs of poor women and an “unmet need” for contraception, many sessions promote unregulated abortion up to birth.
C-FAM, an international pro-family group, expects this will cause trouble for speakers like Melinda Gates. Last year, the wife of billionaire Bill Gates elicited pledges from presidents to advance her family planning campaign within their countries by promising it will not include abortion or population control.
“Women Deliver is billed as a next step in Melinda Gates’ campaign. Gates assured supporters that her campaign has nothing to do with abortion or population control. Yet the speakers and workshops at Women Deliver advocate practices — like unlimited abortion — that will increase maternal and newborn deaths,” said Wendy Wright, C-FAM’s Vice President for Government Relations and Communications.
C-FAM also discovered the often-repeated statistic that 220 million women have an “unmet need” for contraception — a powerful advocacy point — is inflated. A study by the Guttmacher Institute reveals the duplicity.
“Guttmacher adds the number of women who choose not to use contraception to the group of women who cite lack of access — and claims the combined group of women have an ‘unmet need’ for contraception. Most of these 220 million women will not use contraception regardless of its availability because of side effects, personal opposition, infrequent sexual activity, they just had a baby or are breastfeeding, or their partner is opposed,” said Wright.
“Women Deliver encourages tactics that increase unsafe abortions. One campaign backs the inferior drug misoprostol for bleeding after childbirth over a superior medication — because misoprostol can be used for abortions. The goal is to get abortion drugs into nations where abortion is unacceptable or illegal,” Wright said.
U.S. health secretary Kathleen Sebelius will also speak at Women Deliver. Sebelius imposed a contraception/abortion mandate against employers that has sparked 50 lawsuits for violating constitutional rights. Her close ties to late-term abortionists as governor prompted accusations that she shielded abortionists from prosecutions.
CLICK LIKE IF YOU’RE PRO-LIFE!
C-FAM representatives and Wendy Wright attended the two previous Women Deliver conferences and provided these final reports:
Dr. Anthony Levatino is a pro-life physician from New Mexico but, before having a change of heart on the issue of abortion he was an OBGYN who also performed abortions.
Levatino did as many as 1,200 abortions — some of them after 20 weeks of pregnancy. Then, after his daughter died in a tragic automobile accident, he re-evaluated his position on abortion and stopped doing abortions.
Today, Dr. Levatino told members of a Congressional committee that they should support a bill sponsored by Rep. Trent Franks that would ban abortions nationwide aft 20 weeks of pregnancy.
Levatino’s full testimony before the Subcommittee on the Constitution and Civil Justice appears below:Chairman Franks and distinguished members of the subcommittee, my name is Anthony Levatino. I am a board-certified obstetrician gynecologist. I received my medical degree from Albany Medical College in Albany, NY in 1976 and completed my OB-GYN residency training at Albany Medical Center in 1980. In my 33-year career, I have been privileged to practice obstetrics and gynecology in both private and university settings. From June 1993 until September 2000, I was associate professor of OB-GYN at the Albany Medical College serving at different times as both medical student director and residency program director. I have also dedicated many years to private practice and currently operate a solo gynecology practice in Las Cruces, NM. I appreciate your kind invitation to address issues related to the District of Columbia Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act (H.R.1797). During my residency training and during my first five years of private practice, I performed both first and second trimester abortions. Duringmy residency in the late 1970s,second trimester abortions were typically performed using saline infusion or, occasionally, prostaglandin instillation techniques. These procedures were difficult, expensive and necessitated that patients go through labor to abort their pre-born children. By 1980, at the time I entered private practice first in Florida and then in upstate New York, those of us in the abortion industry were looking for a more efficient method of second trimester abortion. The Suction D&E proce dure offered clear advantages over older installation methods. The procedure was much quicker and never ran the risk of a live birth. Understand that my partner and I were not running an abortion clinic. We practiced general obstetrics and gynecology but abortion was definitely part of that practice. Relatively few gynecologists in upstate NY would perform such a procedure and wesaw an opportunity to expand our abortion practice. I performed first trimester suction D&C abortions in my office up to 10 weeks from last menstrual period and later procedures in an outpatient hospital setting. From 1981 through February 1985, I performed approximately 1200 abortions. Over 100 of them were second trimester Suction D&E procedures up to 24 weeks
gestation.Imagine if you can that you are a pro-choice obstetrician/gynecologist like I once was. Your patient today is 24 weeks pregnant. At twenty-four weeks from last menstrual period, her uterus is two finger-breadths above the umbilicus.
If you could see her baby, which is quite easy on an ultrasound, she would be as long as your hand plus a half from the top of her head to the bottom of her rump not counting the legs. Your patient has been feeling her baby kick for the last 2 months or more but now she is asleep on an operating room table and you are there to help her with her problem pregnancy.The first task is remove the laminaria that had earlier been placed in the cervix to dilate it sufficiently to allow the procedure you are about to perform. With that accomplished, direct your attention to the surgical instruments arranged on a small table to your right. The first instrument you reach for is a 14-French suction catheter. It is clear plastic and about nine inches long. It has a bore through the center approximately ¾ of an inch in diameter. Picture yourself introducing this catheter through the cervix and instructing the circulating nurse to turn on the suction machine which is connected through clear plastic tubing to the catheter. What you will see is a pale yellow fluid that looks a lot like urine coming through the catheter into a glass bottle on the suction machine. This is the amniotic fluid that surrounded the baby to protect her. With suction complete, look for your Sopher clamp. This instrument is about thirteen inches long and made of stainless steel. At the end are located jaws about 2 ½ inches long and about ¾ of an inch wide with rows of sharp ridges or teeth. This instrument is for grasping and crushing tissue. When it gets hold of something, it does not let go. A second trimester D&E abortion is a blind procedure. The baby can be in any orientation or position inside the uterus. Picture yourself reaching in with the Sopher clamp and grasping anything you can. At twenty-four weeks gestation, the uterus is thin and soft so be careful not to perforate or puncture the walls. Once you have grasped something inside, squeeze on the clamp to set the jaws and pull hard–really hard. You feel something let go and out pops a fully formed leg about six inches long. Reach in again and grasp whatever you can. Set the jaw and pull really hard once again and out pops an arm about the same length. Reach in again and again with that clamp and tear out the spine, intestines, heart and lungs.
The toughest part of a D&E abortion is extracting the baby’s head. The head of a baby that age is about the size of a large plum and is now free floating inside the uterine cavity. You can be pretty sure you have hold of it if the Sopher clamp is spread about as far as your fingers will allow. You will know you have it right when you crush d own on the clamp and see white gelatinous material coming through the cervix. That was the baby’s brains. You can then extract the skull pieces. Many times a little face will come out and stare back at you.Congratulations! You have just successfully performed a second trimester Suction D&E abortion. You just affirmed her right to choose. If you refuse to believe that this procedure inflicts severe pain on that unborn child, please think again.
Before I close, I want to make a comment on the necessity and usefulness of utilizing second and third trimester abortion to save women’s lives. I often hear the argument that we must keep abortion legal in order to save women’s lives in cases of life threatening conditions that can and do arise in pregnancy.Albany Medical Center where I worked for over seven years is a tertiary referral center that accepts patients with life threatening conditions related to or caused by pregnancy. I personally treated hundreds of women with such conditions in my tenure there. There are several conditions that can arise or worsen typically during the late second or third trimester of pregnancy that require immediate care. In many of those cases, ending or “terminating” the pregnancy, if you prefer, can be life saving. But is abortion a viable treatment option in this setting? I maintain that it usually, if not always, is not.
CLICK LIKE IF YOU’RE PRO-LIFE!
Before a Suction D&E procedure can be performed, the cervix must first be sufficiently dilated. In my practice, this was accomplished with serial placement of laminaria. Laminaria is a type of sterilized seaweed that absorbs water over several hours and swells to several times its original diameter. Multiple placements of several laminaria at a time areabsolutely required prior to attempting a suction D&E. In the mid second trimester, this requires approximately 36 hours to accomplish. When utilizing the D&X abortion procedure, popularly known as Partial-Birth Abortion, this process requires three days as explained by Dr. Martin Haskell in his 1992 paper that first described this type of abortion.
In cases where a mother’s life is seriously threatened by her pregnancy, a doctor more often than not doesn’t have 36 hours, much less 72 hours, to resolve the problem. Let me illustrate with a real -life case that I managed while at the Albany Medical Center. A patient arrived one night at 28 weeks gestation with severe pre-eclampsia or toxemia.Her blood pressure on admission was 220/160. As you are probably aware, a normal blood pressure is approximately 120/80. This patient’s pregnancy was a threat to her life and the life of her unborn child. She could very well be minutes or hours away from a major stroke. This case was managed successfully by rapidly stabilizing the patient’s blood pressure and “terminating” her pregnancy by Cesarean section. She and her baby did well. This is a typical case in the world of high-risk obstetrics. In most such cases, any attempt to perform an abortion “to save the mother’s life” would entail undue and dangerous delay in providing appropriate, truly life-saving care. During my time at Albany Medical Center I managed hundreds of such cases by “terminating”pregnancies to save mother’s lives. In all those hundreds of cases, the number of unborn children that I had to deliberately kill was zero.
A collection of religious groups, including organizations with members from the Methodist Church, United Church of Christ, and Jewish faiths have issued a letter to Congress urging lawmakers to oppose a ban on late-term abortions.
Organized under the banner of the pro-abortion Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice, the Methodist Federation for Social Action, United Church of Christ Justice and Witness Ministries, Jewish Council for Public Affairs, National Council of Jewish Women and Union of Reform Judaism all signed their names to a letter opposing H.R.1797, the “District of Columbia Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act.”
“We, the undersigned national religious groups, urge you to oppose H.R.1797, the “District of Columbia Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act” sponsored by Representative Trent Franks (R-AZ), which would create a nationwide ban on access to abortion care 20 weeks after fertilization,” they say in the letter. “We stand united across our faith traditions in opposing this extreme legislation.”
The religious groups join organization like Planned Parenthood and NARAL in blaming pro-life laws for the horrors that took place at Kermit Gosnell’s abortion clinic.
“Proponents of this bill have cited the Kermit Gosnell case as a reason to push this intrusive policy, but the fact is that the lack of access to safe and affordable abortion care is precisely the circumstance that drove women to an unscrupulous person like Gosnell, as it did to so many women before Roe v. Wade. The existence of his clinic is a ghastly warning sign of what happens when abortion is so restricted and expensive that a woman in need feels that she has nowhere else to turn,” they write.
“Our religious values call us to offer compassion, support, and respect to a woman and her family facing these difficult circumstances. H.R.1797 will only make a challenging situation worse. When a woman needs an abortion, it is critically important that she have access to safe and legal care,” they add.
The letter goes on to say, “Like all Americans, Rep. Franks is free to have and share his own religious beliefs about issues related to pregnancy and parenting. Liberty is an American value. However, H.R.1797 is a clear attempt to impose one particular religious belief on the whole nation.”
Franks has said he would think a ban on late-term abortions would bring most Americans together.
“I know when the subject is related in any way to abortion, the doors of reason and human compassion in our minds and hearts often close, and the humanity of the unborn can no longer be seen. But I pray we can at least come together to agree that we can and should draw the line at the point that these innocent babies can feel the excruciating pain of these brutal procedures,” he said.
CLICK LIKE IF YOU’RE PRO-LIFE!
Franks added: “The case of Kermit Gosnell shocked the sensibilities of millions of Americans. However, the crushing fact is that abortions on babies just like the ones killed by Kermit Gosnell have been happening hundreds of times per day, every single day, for the past 40 years. Indeed, let us not forget that, had Kermit Gosnell dismembered these babies before they had traveled down the birth canal only moments earlier, he would have, in many places nationwide, been performing an entirely legal procedure. If America truly understands that horrifying reality, hearts and laws will change.”
“To this end, I have re-introduced the D.C. Pain Capable Unborn Protection Act, which will now be amended to broaden its coverage so that its provisions will apply nationwide,” he said. “Knowingly subjecting our innocent unborn children to dismemberment in the womb, particularly when they have developed to the point that they can feel excruciating pain every terrible moment leading up to their undeserved deaths, belies everything America was called to be. This is not who we are.”
A nationwide poll of 1,003 registered voters in March found that 64% would support a law such as the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act prohibiting abortion after 20 weeks — when an unborn baby can feel pain — unless the life of the mother was in danger. Only 30% opposed such legislation.
Earlier this week, in a feeble attempt at humor on Facebook, I posted: “If you haven’t been audited by the IRS during the Obama administration, can you even call yourself a conservative?”
Given the scale of the abuses, I should probably just shorten it and say, “Only RINOs don’t get audited.” My wife and I got audited in 2011, with the IRS examining every inch of our adoption the previous year. The process was painful, but we got through it, and our refund may have been adjusted by a few dollars (the amount of the adjustment was so small, I don’t actually remember). In other words, the audit was a gigantic waste of time — for the IRS and for our family. A Facebook commenter, however, pointed me to a report that made me rethink the experience.
As we get word that the IRS has harassed a number of pro-life groups, including at least one alleged demand that a pro-life group not picket Planned Parenthood, check out this statistic: In 2012, the IRS requested additional information from 90 percent of returns claiming the adoption tax credit and went on to actually audit 69 percent. More details from the Taxpayer Advocate Service:
During the 2012 filing season, 90 percent of returns claiming the refundable adoption credit were subject to additional review to determine if an examination was necessary. The most common reasons were income and a lack of documentation.
■ Sixty-nine percent of all adoption credit claims during the 2012 filing season were selected for audit.
■ Of the completed adoption tax credit audits, over 55 percent ended with no change in the tax owed or refund due in fiscal year 2012. The median refund amount involved in these audits is over $15,000 and the median adjusted gross income (AGI) of the taxpayers involved is about 64,000. The average adoption credit correspondence audit currently takes 126 days, causing a lengthy delay for taxpayers waiting for refunds.
While many returns had missing or incomplete information (more on that in a moment), what was the outcome of this massive audit campaign? Not much:
Despite Congress’ express intent to target the credit to low and middle income families, the IRS created income-based rules that were responsible for over one-third of all additional reviews in FY2012.
■ Of the $668.1 million in adoption credit claims in tax year (TY) 2011 as a result of adoption credit audits, the IRS only disallowed $11 million — or one and one-half percent — in adoption credit claims. However, the IRS has also had to pay out $2.1 million in interest in TY 2011 to taxpayers whose refunds were held past the 45-day period allowed by law.
So Congress implemented a tax credit to facilitate adoption – a process that is so extraordinarily expensive that it is out of reach for many middle-class families — and the IRS responded by implementing an audit campaign that delayed much-needed tax refunds to the very families that needed them the most. Oh, and the return on its investment in this harassment? Slightly more than 1 percent.
This audit wave got almost no media coverage, but what was the experience like for individual families? In a word, grueling. Huge document requests with short turnaround times were followed by lengthy IRS delays in processing, all with no understanding for the unique documentation challenges of international adoption. Here’s how one adoptive family described the experience:
It was early June when a letter arrived from IRS explaining that we (and lots of other adoptive parents, as it turns out) were being audited re: our adoption tax credit. The folks at IRS gave us 30 days to gather our receipts, invoices, cancelled checks, etc. to document our expenses and submit said documents to their tax examiner. If we couldn’t comply within the time limit, they would set aside our request for a credit and we would be out of luck, meaning no more of our money would be refunded to us. If we got them the paperwork, then they would review our records and decide how much more of our money they would refund to us. (Am I bitter? Just a tad bit . . .)
Anyway, this might seem to be an easy fix to those unfamiliar with foreign adoption. After all, if you adopt, you work with an agency and that’s a business, right? Businesses give receipts and invoices, right? And everyone has cancelled checks, rights? Um, not so much. See, we adopted from Kazakhstan…on the other side of the freakin’ earth…and it’s a cash economy…that uses its own currency…and English isn’t the language of Kazakhstan. The aforementioned issues presented a teensy problem to securing what IRS needed in a timely manner.
She went on to explain the challenges of documenting expenses (challenges we shared in our own audit, when I ultimately decided it was simply futile trying to document how we spent all the cash we took to Ethiopia). Her post concluded as she wrapped up the audit and waited for the IRS to respond:
Anyway, here we are, 30 days later. For the last several days, my dining room table has been covered with documents. I’ve been reliving my bad old times of adoption dossier preparation but in reverse this time. I finally got it all compiled, copies made, and the huge package of receipts, invoices, translations and conversions sent off to the IRS via Express mail. Now we wait for an answer…to see how much of our money the IRS will give us back. Let’s see if they can turn it around in 30 days like I had to. Bitter??? Nooooo, not me.
Is it the IRS’s job to frustrate and obstruct the intent of Congress by targeting vulnerable families? Once again, here’s the Taxpayer Advocate Service:
With respect to the Adoption Credit, and in particular the credit for adoption of special needs children, the IRS has failed abysmally to take into account that over 45 percent of adopting families are at or below 200 percent federal poverty level, presenting particular communication and functional literacy challenges even as they are desperately in need of the funds which Congress has sought to deliver to them.
As an adoptive family, it’s sometimes difficult to describe the immense challenges in gathering paperwork, opening your lives to social workers for home studies, then expensive travel to sometimes-corrupt foreign locales to then launch a new life with a child you love immensely but who is also experiencing his or her own culture shock and adjustment. All of this places a great strain on family finances and emotions. To then face an audit on the other side? All so the IRS can collect a whopping 1 percent additional revenue? It’s beyond the pale. If the IRS is concerned about fraud, it can audit random samples, not the vast majority of adoptive families claiming the credit.
CLICK LIKE IF YOU’RE PRO-LIFE!
The IRS is a broken institution. Yet despite its moral and legal corruption, it still wields immense power. As Congress investigates wrongdoing, it’s past time to consider fundamental tax reform. In other words, starve the beast. It has proven it can’t be trusted with power.
LifeNews Note: David French is an attorney with the American Center for Law and Justice.
In an amazing story, a pregnant women from Texas reportedly died, gave birth and then was brought back to life.
Erica Nigrelli, who was 36 weeks pregnant, technically died after she collapsed in a co-worker’s classroom at Elkins High School where she worked in the Houston area. her heart had stopped and co-workers tried CPR and a defibrillator in an attempt to get it going again. They were able to keep her alive until paramedics arrived.
once at the hospital, Nigrelli gave birth via Caesarian section. But because Nigrelli’s heart wasn’t beating at the time, Elayna was considered by physicians to have given birth after death.
However, doctors were able to bring Nigrelli back to life and detected a heart defect that they were able to manage with a pacemaker Elayna is now three months old and weighs nine pounds and her mother is doing better.
“She’s just a baby, a normal baby,” said Erica, who now has a pacemaker that should allow her to see Elayna grow up.
The recent Gosnell trial exposed many Americans to the ugly reality of abortion, which is often hidden behind language such as “women’s rights,” “choice” and “reproductive health.” Not surprisingly, the nation reacted with outrage and horror to the procedures performed in Gosnell’s clinic. As the images of babies with snipped necks and body parts stored in freezers continue to haunt the American public, Congressman Trent Franks (R-Ariz.) has proposed a bill that would eliminate late term abortions (after 20 weeks gestation) nationwide.
Last year, Franks introduced the District of Columbia Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act which would make it illegal in Washington, D.C., to perform an abortion after 20 weeks of pregnancy (around the end of the fifth month). According to Franks, this bill attempts to “draw the line at the point that these innocent babies can feel the excruciating pain of these brutal procedures.” In fact, there is scientific evidence proving that unborn children can feel pain at 20 weeks of gestation, if not before.
The bill gathered a majority vote in the House in 2012, but needed a two-thirds majority to pass because it was introduced under a procedural measure. Franks reintroduced the bill in April, but expanded its protection of the unborn nationwide. The House Judiciary Subcommittee on the Constitution and Civil Justice – chaired by Franks — will hold a hearing on the legislation May 23. Currently the bill has 120 co-sponsors.
“Knowingly subjecting our innocent unborn children to dismemberment in the womb, particularly when they have developed to the point that they can feel excruciating pain every terrible moment leading up to their undeserved deaths, belies everything America was called to be,” said Franks.
This bill is a step in the right direction for our nation, though it falls short of the goal of eliminating all abortions. As we have seen over these past forty years, however, eliminating the horror of abortion from our nation is not going to happen all at once, but one step at a time.
The pro-abortion Guttmacher Institute reports that late term abortions account for less than 2% of all abortions performed in the U.S., and so at a glance, it doesn’t seem as if passing this bill will make much of a difference in the long run. Indeed, the majority of abortions in the nation will be unaffected by this bill, which begs the question: as Catholics, can we support this bill, since it allows for abortion to continue?
According to Pope John Paul II, the answer is yes. In Evangelium Vitae, Pope John Paul II affirms that Catholics can support bills that limits evil, even if they do not abolish it all together: “[T]his does not in fact represent an illicit cooperation with an unjust law, but rather a legitimate and proper attempt to limit its evil aspects” (EV, 73). Franks’ bill will certainly limit the evil of the unjust legality of abortion in America.
We want to ban every abortion – regardless of the point in pregnancy at which it might occur, how the child was conceived, or any supposed risks of defects. No innocent human being may be destroyed due to our fears or desires. Unfortunately, our country is not yet at the point where her lawmakers can approve a bill that would ban all abortion. However, this does not mean we should give up hope. It is morally justifiable to take steps to work up to that point, although such imperfect legislation must never legitimize any abortion for any reason. Though it will not wipe out abortion, it would save lives if enacted.
Consider calling your congressman and asking him or her to support this important legislation.
If Americans can come to see that late term abortion is murder, they will be that much closer to seeing that all abortion is murder. Indeed, when asked about state laws that have banned abortion after 20 weeks, late term abortion doctor Willie Parker agreed that “they [the state laws] create this impression that abortion providers are callous and allow people to conflate murder and abortion. People feel morally justified to say ‘this is wrong’ because they’re led to think it’s close to murder. I think that jeopardizes us [abortion providers], by conflating abortion with an issue that would cause moral outrage.” This acknowledgement is dangerous for the abortion industry and adds weight to the argument that with Franks’ bill, we are headed in the right direction.
Though it is extremely unlikely that this bill would pass the Senate and be signed into law by the most pro-abortion president in our nation’s history, if it were to become law, it would good, but not a reason for pro-lifers to relent. Drawing the line at 20 weeks is no more a solution to the problem of abortion than it is to drawing the line at birth. The key to overcoming the culture of death in which we live will be to acknowledge human life and dignity from the moment of conception. Franks’ bill is one of many steps that will help to rid our country of this evil called abortion.
LifeNews Note: Molly Loesel is a communications intern at Human Life International. She is a junior at Benedictine College, a Catholic college founded on the Benedictine tradition, in Atchison, Kansas. Molly is studying Philosophy with minors in Communications and Theology. Reprinted with permission from HLI’s WorldWatch blog.
Doctors at the University of Michigan have saved a baby’s life using the marvels of modern technology to “print” the child a new airway using a goundbreaking 3-D printer to restore his breathing.
From the University of Michigan:
Every day, their baby stopped breathing, his collapsed bronchus blocking the crucial flow of air to his lungs. April and Bryan Gionfriddo watched helplessly, just praying that somehow the dire predictions weren’t true.
“Quite a few doctors said he had a good chance of not leaving the hospital alive,” says April Gionfriddo, about her now 20-month-old son, Kaiba. “At that point, we were desperate. Anything that would work, we would take it and run with it.”
They found hope at the University of Michigan, where a new, bioresorbable device that could help Kaiba was under development. Kaiba’s doctors contacted Glenn Green, M.D., associate professor of pediatric otolaryngology at the University of Michigan.
Green and his colleague, Scott Hollister, Ph.D., professor of biomedical engineering and mechanical engineering and associate professor of surgery at U-M, went right into action, obtaining emergency clearance from the Food and Drug Administration to create and implant a tracheal splint for Kaiba made from a biopolymer called polycaprolactone.
On February 9, 2012, the specially-designed splint was placed in Kaiba at C.S. Mott Children’s Hospital. The splint was sewn around Kaiba’s airway to expand the bronchus and give it a skeleton to aid proper growth. Over about three years, the splint will be reabsorbed by the body. The case is featured today in the New England Journal of Medicine.
“It was amazing. As soon as the splint was put in, the lungs started going up and down for the first time and we knew he was going to be OK,” says Green.
Green and Hollister were able to make the custom-designed, custom-fabricated device using high-resolution imaging and computer-aided design. The device was created directly from a CT scan of Kaiba’s trachea/bronchus, integrating an image-based computer model with laser-based 3D printing to produce the splint.
“Our vision at the University of Michigan Health System is to create the future of health care through discovery. This collaboration between faculty in our Medical School and College of Engineering is an incredible demonstration of how we achieve that vision, translating research into treatments for our patients,” says Ora Hirsch Pescovitz, M.D., U-M executive vice president for medical affairs and CEO of the U-M Health System.
“Groundbreaking discoveries that save lives of individuals across the nation and world are happening right here in Ann Arbor. I continue to be inspired and proud of the extraordinary people and the amazing work happening across the Health System.”
Kaiba was off ventilator support 21 days after the procedure, and has not had breathing trouble since then.
“The material we used is a nice choice for this. It takes about two to three years for the trachea to remodel and grow into a healthy state, and that’s about how long this material will take to dissolve into the body,” says Hollister.
“Kaiba’s case is definitely the highlight of my career so far. To actually build something that a surgeon can use to save a person’s life? It’s a tremendous feeling.”
The image-based design and 3D biomaterial printing process can be adapted to build and reconstruct a number of tissue structures. Green and Hollister have already utilized the process to build and test patient specific ear and nose structures in pre-clinical models. In addition, the method has been used by Hollister with collaborators to rebuild bone structures (spine, craniofacial and long bone) in pre-clinical models.
Severe tracheobronchomalacia is rare. About 1 in 2,200 babies are born with tracheomalacia and most children grow out of it by age 2 or 3, although it often is misdiagnosed as asthma that doesn’t respond to treatment.
Severe cases, like Kaiba’s, are about 10 percent of that number. And they are frightening, says Green. A normal cold can cause a baby to stop breathing. In Kaiba’s case, the family was out at a restaurant when he was six weeks old and he turned blue.
“Severe tracheobronchomalacia has been a condition that has bothered me for years,” says Green. “I’ve seen children die from it. To see this device work, it’s a major accomplishment and offers hope for these children.”
CLICK LIKE IF YOU’RE PRO-LIFE!
Before the device was placed, Kaiba continued to stop breathing on a regular basis and required resuscitation daily.
“Even with the best treatments available, he continued to have these episodes. He was imminently going to die. The physician treating him in Ohio knew there was no other option, other than our device in development here,” Green says.
Kaiba is doing well and he and his family, including an older brother and sister, live in Ohio.
“He has not had another episode of turning blue,” says April. “We are so thankful that something could be done for him. It means the world to us.”
A former worker at an abortion clinic now faces charges after helping a friend to give birth and then leaving the baby to die.
Jessica Carpenter and Rachel Lowe of Norfolk, Virginia are being charged with felonies for producing a miscarriage. The 27-year-old Rachel Lowe, a former employee at Tidewater Women’s Health Clinic, a Norfolk abortion facility, is accused of providing 20-year-old Carpenter with a concoction of health store herbs that would cause an abortion.
The baby was six months along at the time of the abortion.
The state classifies self-induced abortions a Class 4 felony that carries a 2-10 year prison sentence and up to $100,000 in fines.
From a report on what happened:
Lea Smith, one of their mutual friends, told WTKR-TV that she heard them discussing an induced miscarriage. She contacted police when the infant died after being born prematurely.
Tidewater Women’s Clinic owner Dr. David Peters told the station that Lowe was never involved in any medical procedures, insisting that she was hired to do clerical work and occasionally comfort nervous patients.
He added that inducing a miscarriage with herbal supplements, a practice that goes back hundreds of years, is extremely dangerous and could have killed Carpenter. Peters also noted that the survival rate for babies born after just six months of gestation is “at best 50 percent, maybe 60 percent.” WTKR-TV did not obtain the baby’s autopsy results, and the two accused women refused to comment.
Here we are, in the month of May, when everyone joyfully celebrates Mothers Day, and we Catholics particularly remember our Blessed Mother Mary. It is Springtime, when God’s creation is bursting forth in all its beauty and fertility. All around us, we are reminded that our lives are a gift, ultimately from God, but also from our human mother and our human father. And we are grateful for this gift.
But anyone who picks up the morning newspaper, or turns on the television, can’t help but be deeply troubled by the condition of our culture, particularly how we treat the gift of life.
The national news has given us the nauseating story of the late-term abortionist, Dr. Kermit Gosnell. He was convicted of multiple counts of murder last week, for killing babies who had been born alive after attempted abortions. For years he carried out his terrible trade under unsanitary and inhumane conditions, while the public health authorities of Pennsylvania stood aside and did nothing, out of an ideologically-motivated reluctance to intrude upon a woman’s “right to choose”. Many people, including other abortionists, knew about the abuses and injuries, yet nobody intervened. The Gosnell trial focused our nation’s attention on something it has been avoiding for decades — the essential cruelty of abortion.
So, you would think we could now finally start speaking openly and with common sense about abortion, seeking ways to limit it, discussing creative alternatives.
Apparently, though, that’s not as easy as it sounds.
Instead, we see the President of the United States attending a gala event and toasting Planned Parenthood. Interestingly, the President never mentioned the word “abortion”, but instead praised Planned Parenthood for their work for “women’s health”. But make no mistake — Planned Parenthood may hide behind the term “women’s health”, but their business is really abortion. They do over 300,000 abortions every year, a great number of which are paid for by taxpayers. And they oppose any and all reasonable regulations of abortion, or even discussion about it.
We also have the threat of an expansion of abortion here in New York, under the rubric of “women’s equality”. Many of the governor’s proposals being advanced under that title are worthy of support, and we have not yet seen the actual details of his “Reproductive Health Act.” However, some of the advocates continue to insist that abortion is a central part of “women’s equality.” Their proposals include defining abortion as a “fundamental right”, as if it were equal in significance to the right to vote. They are also pressing to permit non-doctors to do abortions, and allowing risky late-term procedures to be done outside of hospitals. All this would expand the number of late-term abortions, and prevent many common-sense regulations, like ensuring that parents are involved in a decision made by a minor.
How does any of that make any sense? One abortion is too many, but every year we have over 100,000 in New York, and over a million in the United States. Over half of the African-American children conceived each year in New York are aborted, as much as 60% in some areas. So expansion of abortion is hardly something that anyone needs. I’m glad that more and more of our political leaders, including Governor Cuomo, are urging creative ways to decrease the number of abortions by assisting pregnant women, their unborn and newly-born babies.
Nor is there any reasonable way to consider abortion as good for “women’s health” or “equality”. Half of the aborted children are women, some of whom are aborted for no reason other than their sex. Women who have experienced abortion sometimes die from complications, or suffer psychological and physical effects for years afterwards. It is utter madness to treat the gift of a woman’s fertility as if it were a disease, and her unborn baby as if it were a tumor to be eliminated.
We frequently hear calls for a “national conversation” about serious issues, yet our leaders never seem to want to talk frankly about abortion. It has become the great taboo, the subject that we must never mention. When we do raise the subject, we are accused of “imposing our values” on others.
Really, who is imposing values? When our cultural leaders deny or avoid the truth about abortion, isn’t that imposing a view of reality? When the government forces taxpayers to pay for abortion, isn’t that an imposition of anti-life values? What about the unborn babies — how do they feel about having the value of “choice” imposed on them in the most permanent way possible?
Deep in our hearts, there are truths that cannot be erased, that cannot be completely clouded by ideology, or utilitarian calculations, or by our own weaknesses and self-delusions. Our lives are an awesome gift, they are precious and must be safeguarded and nurtured. But not just our own — every human life is just as important, and must be preserved and protected as well. We are all called to be a gift of self, a loving servant, to our brothers and sisters, particularly those in need. And we know, at the core of our being, that abortion contradicts these truths.
CLICK LIKE IF YOU’RE PRO-LIFE!
Our society is once again challenged to recognize these fundamental truths, to discuss them candidly, to deal with the hard and challenging decisions that they entail, and to support those who struggle with them. The days of denial have to come to an end. We can no longer hide behind euphemism and distraction.
Can we all finally agree that things have gone way too far, and begin to make corrections? Can we start to talk common sense?
LifeNews Note: Cardinal Dolan is the Archbishop of New York.