in this issue:
abortion: ABORTION TRAINING INREASE; PRO CHOICE VOICE
adolescent pregnancy: SAFE?
archives: BIOETHICIST HELGA KUHSE
birth control pill: ESTROGEN LINKED TO CANCER
chemical (medical) abortion: ABORTION BEFORE IMPLANTATION; ATTITUDES
culture of death: TOLERANCE
down syndrome: TRIPLE TEST
imposed death: KEVORKIAN’S VICTIMS
national lawyers association: OF INTEREST
planned parenthood: STOPP ANALYZES PP STATS
politics: ADVICE FOR PRESIDENT-ELECT BUSH
population: TACTICAL CHANGE?
web news: INSPIRATIONAL PRO-LIFE SITE
zinger: WHEN PHYSICIANS KILL
reflection: ON ST. JOHN THE BAPTIST
ABORTION TRAINING INCREASE: The National Abortion Federation reports that for the first time in decades, training in first- and second-trimester abortions has increased in ob/gyn training programs nationwide.
(Reading: National Abortion Federation news release, 12/13/00; the study from which the release was taken was published by Family Planning Perspectives, 11-12/00 pp. 268-271)
PRO CHOICE VOICE: This website, a joint project of NARAL and PPFA, dedicates one page to the need for further development of “contraceptive and STD prevention research and development.”
COMMENT: The article perpetuates the lie that aborting a baby before she implants is really not aborting a baby at all. To see the rhetorical obfuscations, see Pro-Choice Voice.
SAFE? Researchers present contradictory statements in the same article, claiming in the summary that “pregnancy in women less than 18 years old was associated with increased risk of preterm labor before 32 weeks gestation,” and concluding that “age-related obstetric risks for women less than 18 years old are low.” They comment, “we believe that pregnancy is associated with considerable socioeconomic problems. It might lead to social exclusion and can reduce educational, career, and economic prospects.”
COMMENT: Subjective rhetoric or clinical facts?
(Reading: “Obstetric Risks of Pregnancy in Women Less than 18 Years Old,” Obstetrics and Gynecology, 12/00 pp. 962-966, subscription only)
BIOETHICIST HELGA KUHSE: Noted bioethicist (and comrade of Princeton’s Peter Singer) and pro-death guru Helga Kuhse was quoted by pro-life leader Rita Marker, in a 1988 interview, as follows: “If we can get people to accept the idea of the removal of all medical treatment and care, including food and fluids, they will see what a terribly painful way this is to die and then in the patient’s best interest they will be willing to accept the lethal injection.”
(Reading: “Crusader for Life, Rita Marker,” New American, 5/9/88, p. 19; a CD can be ordered ($100) containing this particular issue; for more information on Rita Marker’s current efforts, see the International Euthanasia Task Force)
birth control pill
ESTROGEN LINKED TO CANCER: The National Toxicology Program advisory committee voted 8-1 that steroidal estrogen — a type used in post-menopausal treatments and birth control pills — should be placed on the nation’s list of cancer-causing substances. The committee found an association with endometrial cancer, and to a lesser extent, breast cancer.
(Reading: “Panel Puts Estrogen on Cancer List,” New York Times, 12/15/00, subscription required to access report; US Panel Says Estrogen a Cancer Agent, Reuters, 12/18/00)
chemical (medical) abortion
ABORTION BEFORE IMPLANTATION: Describing the mode of action of the morning-after (abortion) pill, one news source reports: “Unlike drugs such as RU-486 (mifepristone) and methotrexate, which terminate pregnancy, emergency contraceptives prevent pregnancy from occurring by altering the lining of the emdometrium and inhibiting the implantation of a fertilized egg,” and “ECP (emergency contraception pill) inhibits ovulation, fertilization of an egg, or implantation of a fertilized egg in the uterus.”
(Reading: “Wider Availability Urged for Emergency Contraceptives,” American Medical News, 12/11/00; Backgrounder from British Columbia Pharmacy Association, updated 10/25/00, no web site.)
ATTITUDES: Studying a 302-person sample of the military population, researchers found “64 percent had heard of emergency contraception, but only 15 percent knew the correct time to take it.”
(Reading: “Knowledge and Attitudes About Emergency Contraception in a Military Population,” Obstetrics and Gynecology, 12/00, pp. 921-925, subscription only)
culture of death
TOLERANCE: Mary R. Joyce, M.A., writes, “When sickness becomes health, and wrongs become rights — all in the name of tolerance — facts become fictions, and truths become lies.”
(Reading: “Reclaiming the Truth About Tolerance,” NaProEthics Forum, 11/00, see site to subscribe)
TRIPLE TEST: Researchers recommend the use of maternal serum alpha-fetoprotein, estriol and hCG to provide a basis for positively identifying an “affected pregnancy,” claiming that the triple test is effective at 16 weeks gestational age. They further suggest that earlier diagnosis relieves “anxiety for patients” and maximizes “options.”
(Reading: “Efficacy of Screening for Fetal Down Syndrome in the United States from 1974 to 1997,” Obstetrics and Gynecology, 12/00, pp. 979-985, subscription only)
KEVORKIAN’S VICTIMS: Researchers studied 69 of those Kevorkian put to death during his reign of terror, and discovered, among other things, that “only 25 percent were terminally ill according to autopsy findings …. 71 percent were women, a finding that is noteworthy because suicide rates are usually lower among women than among men.”
(Reading: “Dr. Jack Kevorkian and Cases of Euthanasia in Oakland County, Michigan, 1990-1998,” The New England Journal of Medicine, 12/7/00, pp. 1735-36; for a comprehensive overview of Kevorkian’s history of death, see The Kevorkian Papers)
national lawyers association
OF INTEREST: The Fall 2000 National Lawyers Association Review contains an article by Mark Trapp entitled, “Preserving Our Sacred Honor: Why the Declaration of Independence Must be Taught to America’s Youth.” Attorney Richard Collier informs us that the article argues “that the paramount reason that the Declaration needs to be taught in schools is this: to reinstill a respect for human life and its Creator.” In the same issue Victor Rosenblum writes an article ent itled, “RU-486: Prescription for Disaster.”
(Reading: NLA Review, Fall 2000; e-mail from Richard Collier, Esq. The NLA Review is not available on line)
STOPP ANALYZES PP STATS: The 1999-2000 Planned Parenthood Federation of America annual report reveals the following, according to Jim Sedlak, founder of Stop Planned Parenthood International:
On-site abortions performed — 182,854
Off-site contract abortions — 166
Emergency contraception (sic) — 112,807
Government (taxpayer dollars) — $187.3 million
Corporate, foundation and individual donations — $174.9 million
Clinic income — $222.2 million
(Reading: For detailed analyses and up-to-the-minute reports on Planned Parenthood’s anti-life agenda, see STOPP)
ADVICE FOR PRESIDENT-ELECT BUSH: Quoting William Keffer, Dallas County officer in the Bush campaign: “Mr. Bush’s brand of bipartisanship must define, not defer. It must convince, not concede. It must surpass, not surrender.”
(Reading: “A Texan Advises George W. Bush,” Republican National Coalition for Life FaxNotes, 12/15/00)
TACTICAL CHANGE? A surprising set of articles indicates that proponents of population control are shifting focus away from population control and toward generic “women’s health” issues. The outcome, assuredly, would be the same. For articles indicating this policy shift written by Allan Rosenfield, M.D., Steven W. Sinding, Ph.D., and Adrienne Germain, M.A., see the American Journal of Public Health, 12/00, pp. 1838-1847, subscription only.
INSPIRATIONAL PRO-LIFE SITE: To learn more about the importance of pro-life work and how babies are saved in the streets, see Voice for Life.
WHEN PHYSICIANS KILL: Researchers report “Despite medical society policies, the majority of physicians surveyed (482 returned questionnaires) approved of most disallowed actions involving capital punishment, indicating that they believed it is acceptable in some circumstances for physicians to kill individuals against their wishes. It is possible that the lack of stigmatization by colleagues allows physicians to engage in such practices.”
COMMENT: Or is it because millions of abortions, each of which is an act of killing, have dulled the consciences of physicians?
(Reading: “Physicians’ Attitudes About Involvement in Lethal Injection for Capital Punishment,” Archives of Internal Medicine, 10/23/00, full text not available without subscription)
reflection for prayer
ON JOHN THE BAPTIST:
Can we now picture to ourselves this first appearance of the Baptist? He came and stood in the desert by the river, at the gateway leading into Judaea, on the very spot that was still hallowed by the memory of the prophet Elias, hard upon the main road along which the busy world had to pass; a weird, uncouth, unkempt, terrible figure, in harmony with his surroundings, of single mind, unflinching, fearing none, a respecter of no person, asking for nothing, to whom the world with its judgments was of no account whatever though he showed that he knew it through and through, all its castes and all its colors. He came the censor of men, the terror of men, the warning to men, yet winning men by his utter sincerity; telling them plainly the truth about themselves and forcing them to own that he was right; drawing them by no soft inducements, but by the hard lash of his words, and by the solemn threat of doom that awaited them who would not hear; distinguishing true heart-conversion from the false conversion of conformity, religion that lived in the soul from that sham thing of mere inheritance and law. John, the focus upon which all the gathered light of the Old Dispensation converged, from which was to radiate the light of the New.
-Alban Goodier, “The Public Life of Our Lord Jesus Christ”