abortion: COMPLICATIONS, PRO-LIFE VICTORY
chemical (medical) abortion: GEORGETOWN PHYSICIAN APPROVES
congress: HYDE AMENDMENT FLAWED
eugenics: EMBRYO SCREENING TECHNIQUE; PRO-LIFE ANALYSIS
genetic engineering: ANIMAL-HUMAN HYBRID EMBRYO
in vitro fertilization: GUILTY OF TOO MANY BABIES?
personhood: EMBRYONIC PERSON IN CHARGE; SEMANTICS THAT KILL
population: UN BOOK
selective reduction: AMNIOCENTESIS
sterilization: SELECTIVE TUBAL OCCLUSION PROCEDURE (STOP)
united nations: UNFPA’S NAFIS SADIK
reflection for prayer: ST. MACARIUS
COMPLICATIONS: Canadian physicians have reported on post-abortion emotional distress among the population directly involved in surgical abortion, both mothers and fathers.
(Reading: “Emotional Distress Among Couples Involved in First-trimester Induced Abortions,” Canadian Family Physician, 10/00, pp. 2033-2040. This issue is not on this web site at this time. For assistance in acquiring a copy of the study, contact .)
PRO LIFE VICTORY: South Carolina pro-life leader Steve LeFemine reports that the state total for surgical abortion in 1999 is 7,687, the lowest reported total in South Carolina since 1976. LeFemine can be contacted at 803-765-0916.
(Reading: Information about Steve LeFemine, a recent third party candidate for the South Carolina senate. Surgical abortion statistics for all 50 states)
MASSACHUSETTS: U.S. Court Judge Edward Harrington recently ruled that a law restricting pro-life protesters from approaching women was unconstitutional. Harrington said protesters who believe abortion “is a grave moral evil must be given as equal an opportunity as their opponents to express … their sincere message of respect for the sanctity of innocent human life. The First Amendment requires no less.”
(Reading: “Mass. Abortion Law Unconstitutional,” Associated Press, 11/20/00; see U.S. Courts for details on how to acquire a copy of the decision.)
NINE WEST: As part of a settlement in an anti-trust case, the shoe company has been ordered to distribute $34 million to programs that promote women’s health. The National Abortion and Reproductive Rights Action League is incensed that some of the money may be earmarked for crisis pregnancy centers. A NARAL e-mail alert describes these faithful pro-life agencies as “the provider arm of the anti-choice movement” that “use fear tactics to dissuade [women] from choosing legal abortion.” NARAL plans to intervene at a Dec. 14 hearing in an attempt to steer funding away from “deceptive crisis pregnancy centers.”
(Reading: e-mail alert from NARAL’s Choice Action Network, 12/1/00)
chemical (medical) abortion
GEORGETOWN PHYSICIAN APPROVES: Caroline Wellbery, M.D., of Georgetown University School of Medicine, writes in the American Family Physician journal that “emergency contraception is an effective, if underused, means of preventing pregnancy when unprotected intercourse has occurred.”
COMMENT: Wasn’t Georgetown Catholic at one time?
(Reading: “Emergency Contraception: Still Not Too Late,” American Family Physician, 11/15/00)
HYDE AMENDMENT FLAWED: In a report on Medicaid funding of abortion for poor women, the Center for Reproductive Law and Policy points out, “Under the current version of the Hyde Amendment, federal funds may only be used to pay for abortions if the pregnancy is the result of rape or incest or if the procedure is necessary to save a woman’s life and her life is endangered by a physical disorder, physical injury or physical illness.”
COMENT: The Hyde Amendment, as currently worded, undermines and denies personhood to entire segments of the preborn baby population.
(Reading: “Beaten by the System: Low-income Women and Medicaid Funding,” CRLP; the Medicaid policy based on the actual Hyde language is contained in a 2/12/98 letter to state Medicaid directors.)
EMBRYO SCREENING TECHNIQUE: Using the test-tube baby technique for gene testing, the British firm Cytocellhas begun marketing a kit that will determine whether or not an embryo will have low intelligence levels. The kit is the result of research developed at the Institute of Molecular Medicine at Oxford. The website has not been updated, but the “>webmaster can be e-mailed for details.
(Reading: “Gene Test Targets Embryos With Low IQ,” Zenit News Service, 11/26/00, and search for the date and headline)
PRO LIFE ANALYSIS: Well-known pro-life writer Mike Perry has completed a special reprint edition of G. K. Chesterton’s “Eugenics and Other Evils.” Perry has taken the comments of British birth controllers and eugenicists of that era and placed their remarks alongside Chesterton’s. Fantastic job! See Inkling Books for order information, or call 206-365-1624 or e-mail “>Inkling Books.
ANIMAL-HUMAN HYBRID EMBRYO: An Australian company, Amrad, was granted a patent in 1999 for the creation of embryos containing both human cells and cells from mice, sheep, pigs, cattle, goats or fish. Amrad’s division has since been sold to the U. S. company, Chemicon International. Amrad executives say the patent will not be used to create animals with human cells.
(Reading: “Patent Reported to Allow Man-animal Hybrid,” Zenit News Service, 11/26/00, and search for the date and headline. Greenpeace has prepared a report on mixed-species embryos, which can be reviewed online)
in vitro fertilization
GUILTY OF TOO MANY BABIES? A Sheffield, England, judge ruled that a fertility clinic was in breach of contract when a couple seeking the implantation of two babies actually delivered triplets in 1997. The couple argued that they needed the funds to raise the extra child. News reports say there was no written agreement between the couple and the fertility clinic.
(Reading: “Judge Rules on UK Fertility Clinic,” Associated Press, 11/16/00)
EMBRYONIC PERSON IN CHARGE! Writing on the mystery of exactly how the embryo attaches and implants to his mother’s uterine wall, scientists comment, “Implantation represents the remarkable synchronization between the development of the embryo and the differentiation of the endometrium.” And they write, “The embryo is not passive but is an active orchestrator of its attachment and fate.”
COMMENT: This is exactly why politicians and pro-lifers must demand that the law protect the person from the moment of conception (fertilization) without exception.
(Reading: “The Endometrium and Embryo Implantation,” British Medical Journal, 11/25/00, pp. 1301-1302)
SEMANTICS THAT KILL: In a recent news report on “extra embryos” and their future, we note the following false statements:
- “Though the embryos hold tremendous value to those entering the IVF process, their focus is ultimately on the children they hope will result.”COMMENT: An embryo is a child.
- “As a matter of public policy, we conclude that forced procreation is not an area amendable to judicial enforcement.”COMMENT: The existence of one or more embryos indicates that procreation occurred.
- “Obviously, if one takes the view that the embryo has intrinsic moral value, has interests and rights itself as a person, destruction to get stem cells would clearly be wrong.”COMMENT: The embryo is a person, regardless of a particular point of view.
(Reading: “Extra Embryos: What Is Their Future?” American Medical News, 11/13/00, pp. 13-14; )
UN BOOK: The United Nations Office of Population Estimates is due to publish “World Population Prospects” very soon. Please write to Joseph Chamie, DC2-1950, United Nations, New York, NY 10017. It is said that this book could be the most valuable tool ever published by the UN.
AMNIOCENTESIS: Researchers report that the use of amniocentesis in multifetal pregnancies “reduced to twins significantly increases the risk of preterm delivery, especially before 29 weeks’ gestation.” However, they recommend that in twin pregnancies amniocentesis be used “in appropriate candidates who have undergone MFPR [multifetal pregnancy reduction] and have a genetic indication.”
(Reading: “Genetic Amniocentesis in Multifetal Pregnancies Reduced to Twins Compared with Nonreduced Twin Gestations,” Fertility and Sterility, 11/00, pp. 1051-1052; subscription required)
SELECTIVE TUBAL OCCLUSION PROCEDURE (STOP): Viewed as an alternative to surgical sterilization, this procedure involves a physician inserting a metal coil into each of the woman’s fallopian tubes, placing it there until tissue forms over the opening of each tube forming a plug. Tradition female sterilization is reported to cost from $2,500 to $8,000 while STOP will cost about $1,500.
(Reading: “EVMS Tests Alternative to Tubal Ligation,” The Virginian-Pilot, 10/11/00; “Emergency Contraception Technique Promising,” 11/21/00, Reuters)
UNFPA’S NAFIS SADIK: Outgoing UNFPA director Nafis Sadik claimed success in changing global policies concerning population issues, family planning and reproductive health through her efforts in promoting birth control and abortion.
(Reading: “Outgoing UNFPA Head Admits Responsibility for Abortion Spread,” CWN Update, 11/28/00; Sadik’s statements are available on the UNFPA site)
PARIS: Arguing in favor of expanding the availability of abortion in France, Solidarity Minister Elisabeth Guigou said, “Let us not forget a time, not so long ago, when a person could not choose whether she wanted to be a mother or parent.”
COMMENT: She means, of course, the mother or a parent of a dead baby.
(Reading: “French National Assembly Debates Law to Extend Abortion Limit,” Agence France Presse, 11/29/00)
reflection for prayer
I am the vine and you are the branches.
When a farmer prepares to till the soil he must put on clothing and use tools that are suitable. So Christ, our heavenly king, came to till the soil of mankind devastated by sin. He assumed a body and, using the cross as his plowshare, cultivated the barren soul of man. He removed the thorns and thistles which are the evil spirits and pulled up the weeds of sin. Into the fire he cast the straw of wickedness. And when he had plowed the soul with the wood of the cross, he planted in it a most lovely garden of the Spirit, that could produce for its Lord and God the sweetest and most pleasant fruit of every kind.
-St. Macarius, Bishop (d. AD 349)