Tag Archives: Democrat

Encouraging news on the prolife front…

The New Pro-Life Surge
Political gains by U.S. conservatives unleash waves of
anti-abortion legislation.
Sarah Eekhoff Zylstra | posted
6/10/2011 09:24AM

The summer before Katey Tryon’s senior year of high school, she
got pregnant. Recently split from her boyfriend, she was sad and vulnerable when
she hooked up with her older brother’s friend. They had sex once. Six weeks
later, she was tired and her period was late.

“It was terrifying,” Tryon said. “I’m from a small town in Oregon.
My parents are pillars in the community. I was born and raised here, fourth
generation. So my sin was very apparent.” Tryon’s parents, both believers,
rallied around her. Abortion was out of the question. Two days before high
school graduation, Tryon gave birth to a girl and gave her up for adoption.

Tryon enrolled in a Christian college in Portland, determined to
turn her life around, but still felt vulnerable. “I started dating a guy who
embraced me for what I had just gone through, who understood that I didn’t want
to have sex until I got married,” she said.

But they started sleeping together, and one night the condom
didn’t work. Over spring break, at an intercollegiate softball tournament, Tryon
found out she was pregnant again. Her daughter was nine months old. “My world
came crashing down tenfold from the first time,” she said.

Abortion was never a serious option, she said, although “trust me,
it went through my mind. I recognize why other women go there. You want to get
away from your situation. We want to cover up our mistakes and have them all go
away.”

Tryon found support at a local pregnancy center, which sparked in
her a fresh sense of purpose. She gave birth to a boy and gave him up for
adoption. She went back to college, double majoring in social work and
sociology. Eventually she became the development director at Lane Pregnancy
Support Center in Eugene, Oregon.

In April, Tryon testified before the Oregon State Legislature
about how a pregnancy center changed her life for the better. A Senate committee
was considering a bill to force pregnancy centers to publicly post on doors, in
waiting areas, and in brochures that they are not abortion providers. If centers
did not post these notices in five days, they could be fined up to $1,000, up to
$5,000 if not posted in two weeks.

This is one of many new legislative initiatives on abortion, but
the majority of them are working in the other direction.

Flood of LegislationThe Oregon bill is one of 576 measures related to abortion that
have been introduced so far in 2011 in 48 states, according to Elizabeth Nash,
public policy associate for the pro-choice Guttmacher Institute.

Like the Oregon bill, many of them will never pass committee. Yet
by early April, 142 abortion-related provisions had passed at least one chamber
of a state legislature, compared with 67 in 2009. More than half of the 142
bills (57 percent) introduced this year seek to restrict abortion access,
compared with 38 percent in 2010.

About 40 new anti-abortion laws were on the books by mid-April.
They include:

  • expanding the waiting period requirement in South Dakota from 24
    hours to 72 hours, and requiring women to visit a crisis pregnancy center in the
    interim.
  • requiring a physician who performs an abortion in South Dakota to
    provide counseling on all risk factors related to abortion.
  • allowing any hospital employee in Utah to refuse to “participate
    in any way” in an abortion.
  • making it a felony in Arizona to perform or provide money for
    abortions sought because of a baby’s race or sex.
  • prohibiting insurance plans that participate in the state
    insurance exchange from including abortion coverage in Virginia, Arizona, Idaho,
    Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, and Tennessee.
  • prohibiting the abortion of a fetus capable of feeling pain in
    Nebraska, Kansas, Idaho, and Oklahoma. The organization National Right to Life
    has drafted a model bill for pro-life lawmakers to use.

Republican victories in the 2010 mid-term elections account for
much of the legislative surge. Republicans won control of the House of
Representatives and made gains in the Senate. But their success at the state
level was more significant. They took 29 governorships and 680 seats in state
legislatures, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.

It’s the largest gain in modern history. The previous record was
held by Democrats in the post-Watergate 1974 election, in which they picked up
628 seats. Republicans now control the governor’s office and both legislative
chambers of 21 states, according to the National Conference of State
Legislatures.

“The November elections brought huge change in the state houses,”
said Charmaine Yoest, president of Americans United for Life. “But we’ve been
tilling this ground for a while.”

The forward momentum began, Yoest said, when the Supreme Court
upheld the federal ban on partial-birth abortion in 2007.

‘My life and the life of my unborn baby were forever
changed the minute I called for help.’—Katey Tyron, a director at Lane Pregnancy
Support Center

“They chipped away at the absolute right to abortion,” Yoest said.
“The Supreme Court said that states do have the right to limit abortion. That
was a seismic shift.” Pro-life advocates began to see how far they could get
with restrictions, such as parental notification and informed consent laws, she
said.

The legislation has been snowballing since the Republican sweep:
“Just in the first three months of this year, we’ve provided testimony on 17
life-related legislative matters,” she said. In previous years, the average
number of testimonies provided was two or three for the entire year.

Public Opinion ChangesRestricting abortion through new state laws seems to be highly
effective in reducing abortion rates.

“We see that the number of abortions has gone down by 22 percent
between 1990 and 2005,” said Michael New, political science professor at the
University of Alabama. “An important reason is the restrictions that more and
more states are passing.”

New examined the effects of three laws on abortion rates. Opting
not to fund abortions through Medicaid was most significant, dropping state
abortion rates by about 9 percent, he said.

“That’s a strong consistent finding,” he said, pointing to a
Guttmacher report that 20 of 24 peer-reviewed studies found that public funding
restrictions reduced the number of abortions. The second is informed-consent
laws, which require abortion providers to inform a woman about the potential
risks to her health, fetal development, and available assistance before an
abortion is performed. Those laws were connected with in-state abortion
reductions of 5 to 7 percent, he said.

New also analyzed parental involvement laws, which require minors
to either tell or get permission from their parents before having an abortion.
While these laws don’t have a large impact on the overall abortion rate, they
correlate with a 15 percent decline in in-state abortions obtained by
minors.

Recent pro-life legislation is changing gears, pushing for laws
that give women the opportunity to view an ultrasound before an abortion or
banning abortion after the fetus can feel pain. Fetal-pain laws have been a big
goal of National Right to Life. Director of state legislation Mary Spaulding
Balch told Christianity Today, “The Pain-Capable
Unborn Child Protection Act very clearly talks about the humanity of the unborn
child.” So far, abortion supporters have not initiated court challenges to the
new fetal-pain laws.

The effect on the abortion rate from pain-related or ultrasound
laws may not be dramatic, New said. Requiring ultrasounds can be tricky because
abortion providers have to self-enforce, and relatively few abortions are
performed after the second trimester, when the fetus begins to feel pain, he
said.

But those laws are still important, New said. “You have to make
progress incrementally. We have made more progress than we think. We’ve
convinced a lot of people that abortion is wrong. Most doctors and hospitals
want nothing to do with it.”

Indeed, public opinion now lines up against abortion for the first
time since Gallup began asking the question in 1995. In 2010, 47 percent of
Americans called themselves pro-life, while 45 percent identified as
pro-choice.

The pro-life advantage held through three surveys, prompting
Gallup to label it a “real change in public opinion,” one that’s showing itself
at the polls.

Last year’s health care debate put abortion back on the national
stage, and President Obama had to issue an executive order strengthening the
limits on abortion to get the health care reform bill passed.

In addition, the House of Representatives passed a bill this
spring that would defund Planned Parenthood, the largest abortion provider in
the country. The bill failed in the Senate, but the victory in the House was
historic, Yoest said.

‘We see that the number of abortions has gone down by 22
percent between 1990 and 2005. An important reason is the restrictions more and
more states are passing.’—Michael New, political science professor at the
University of Alabama

“I absolutely think this is a swelling tide, regardless of what
happens in this particular skirmish. There is very much a future in terms of
bringing more and more attention to the massive federal subsidy of the abortion
industry.”

CounteroffensiveAll this leaves the pro-choice movement “definitely defensive,”
said Nash of the Guttmacher Institute. “We need to make the case for why these
services are important.”

The public questioning of Planned Parenthood is “a major shift,”
said Melinda Delahoyde, president of Care Net, a network of more than 1,000
pregnancy centers.

Care Net’s pregnancy centers are among the targets of the
pro-choice counteroffensive. New York City’s new disclosure law is “the most
difficult thing we’re facing,” she said. The law, like the one Tryon testified
against in Oregon, requires all pregnancy centers to post in waiting rooms and
in all literature whether they offer or make referrals for abortions,
contraception, and prenatal care. The American Center for Law and Justice is
challenging the constitutionality of the law in federal court.

In January, a federal judge struck down a similar disclosure law
in Baltimore, calling it an unconstitutional violation of free speech and
“viewpoint-based discrimination.”

“It puts onerous regulations on pregnancy centers,” Delahoyde
said. “It opens centers up to costly lawsuits—a right to action by aggrieved
persons. There are very harsh restrictions put up all over against pregnancy
centers, and we know their goal is to shut us down.”

But most of the bills targeting pregnancy centers fail to pass.
Two bills in Virginia—one that proposed to limit the revenue pregnancy centers
receive from license plates, the other to require disclosure that abortions are
not offered at the centers—were withdrawn in March. A resolution praising the
work of pregnancy centers was passed instead. Another disclosure bill in
Washington made it out of committee but failed in the House of
Representatives.

When pro-choice groups can’t get bills passed at the state level,
they look for local municipalities where they can get propositions passed,
Delahoyde said.

Care Net prepares their centers for the legislation, she said. “We
send our public relations and legal people on the road. We provide a united
front at the state house, and that’s very effective.”

Alliance Defense Fund also provides legal help through hundreds of
attorneys connected to local pregnancy centers, she said.

“We train extensively,” Delahoyde said. “We are pressing forward.
Look, there are so many encouraging signs. The pro-choice brand is
eroding.”

Pendulum SwingsWhen Tryon gave birth to her second baby in December 1992, she was
part of a trend. U.S. teen pregnancy rates had swelled to their all-time
high—almost 12 percent of teenage girls—in 1990, according to the Centers for
Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Abortion rates peaked at the same time, with 1.4 million abortions
performed in 1990, according to the CDC. Public support of abortion was also
high, with 56 percent of Americans labeling themselves pro-choice, according to
Gallup. Just 33 percent self-identified as pro-life.

Some 20 years after Tryon was a pregnant teenager, the pendulum is
swinging the other way. She is now an articulate leader at a pregnancy center,
wife of a worship pastor, and mother of three school-age children.

“As a teenager, finding myself in an unplanned pregnancy was scary
at best. Thankfully, I turned to a pregnancy resource center that provided not
only free and confidential services to me, but treated me in a fair and
professional manner, provided me life-giving options when I needed them most,
and eased my fears,” she testified before an Oregon Senate committee.

“My life and the life of my unborn baby were forever changed the
minute I called on them for help. After being educated about all of my options,
I chose an adoption plan that not only gave my baby a hope and a future, but it
also gave it to me.

“It is devastating to think that the vital services I received so
many years ago could be torn from those that so desperately need them today. I
urge you to vote ‘No’ on this bill.”

That bill in Oregon never came to a vote. But neither did another
bill calling for a ban on abortions after 19 weeks.

Sarah Eekhoff Zylstra is a journalist based in the Chicago
area.

Copyright © 2011 Christianity Today. Click
for reprint information.

Related Elsewhere:Previous coverage related to abortion legislation and life
ethics
includes:

State Laws That Lower Abortions | Examining legal measures
enacted to lower abortion rates. (April 4, 2011)

Live Action, Planned Parenthood, and a Year of Change|
Surveying two months of dramatic news on the abortion front in the U.S.
(February 24, 2011)

Abortion Case: Womb vs. Egg | Ethical issues abound in case of
British Columbia couple who wanted surrogate mom to terminate pregnancy after
baby was found to have Down Syndrome. (October 15, 2010)

CT covers more political developments on the politics blog.

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Catholic Writer wants Catholics to “Know the Deal”

Catholics should know the Deal by Kevin Wandra

Georgians will soon head to the voting booth to choose the state’s next governor, Republican Nathan Deal or Democrat Roy Barnes. The race is expected to be one of the closest in the nation, with the Cook Political Report rating it as a tossup

A key voting bloc that could decide the hotly contested race is the growing number of Catholics in Georgia; according to PewForum.org, 12 percent of the state is comprised of Catholics. Many of these Catholics are taking part in Respect Life Month events across Georgia that focus on key issues such abortion and embryonic stem cell research, among others. 

Based on my experiences as a conservative Catholic living in Georgia, these same Catholics are politically active and motivated. But will they overlook the aforementioned life issues in favor of, say, jobs and the economy during these immensely difficult economic times? 

If Catholics adhere to the Church’s teachings on placing a priority on respecting the sanctity and dignity of all human life above all other issues, they could give Deal, a staunch pro-life supporter, the votes he needs to decide the outcome of the race. 

The choice should be obvious for them. 

Barnes once was pro-life – he opposed abortion when he first ran for governor in 1990 – but his daughters later convinced him to become pro-choice. He also supports embryonic stem cell research. In fact, life-destroying embryonic stem cell research is such an important issue to Barnes that he discussed his support for it during his closing statement in the first formal gubernatorial debate

Deal, on the other hand, has a strong pro-life voting record, having received a 100 percent rating from the National Right to Life Committee during his last two terms in Congress. He has received the endorsement of the Georgia Right to Life PAC, as well. Deal proudly touts both distinctions on his campaign website, where he states he will “stand up for human life at all stages.” 

He reaffirmed his pro-life credentials at the first formal gubernatorial debate when discussing stem cell research. He proclaimed his support for research that is “scientifically appropriate as well as morally appropriate.” 

Deal’s support for ethically and morally sound stem cell research could be a decisive issue for devout Catholics, who believe embryonic stem cell research destroys a human life. Embryonic stem cell research is increasingly becoming a pivotal issue in Georgia. Atlanta doctors recently became the first in U.S. History to use embryonic stem cells in an attempt to treat a partially paralyzed human

Daniel Becker, president of Georgia Right to Life, vowed to push the General Assembly, currently safe under GOP control, to enact legislation that would ban embryonic stem cell research. If elected, Barnes would likely do his best to thwart any effort to ban such research. 

Well-informed Catholics have a choice to make. Will they give Barnes, who openly supports abortion and embryonic stem cell research, another term as governor, or will pro-life supporter Deal be given the keys to the governor’s mansion? 

Catholics should know the Deal.

You can reach Mr. Wandra at http://www.linkedin.com/in/kevinwandra.

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A Christian Voter Asks Scripture’s Daniel for Advice

Dear Daniel,

There has been a lot of heated discussion within our home regarding Christian civic responsibility.  How I wish I could talk to you face to face and hear your perspective on these issues.  You were a brilliant man, full of wisdom, courage and diplomacy.  During the long years you spent working within the Babylonian and Persian governments you displayed an unswerving commitment to our God.  Surely you could  give me some guidance.   In reading the account of your life one thing is clear: you would never advocate compromising ethical standards to promote a “greater good”.  Nor would you let yourself be drawn in to the particular idolatry of your age.

Surely your participation in the Babylonian government provided protection for the innocent and you probably became an advocate for your people exiled in a strange country.  It is easy to see that you were not ambitious for personal power or glory, but the honor of God and His glory were uppermost in your motives.  You were not afraid or intimidated by wicked men or wild beasts, but were bold to point out to despotic rulers the inevitable consequences of their evil deeds.  Your participation within an evil system brought a measure of security and justice to the innocent in that society and, more importantly,  glory to God.

It is impossible for me not to view current political issues through the grid of my own life experience.  When I ponder the subject of socialism, immediately the contrast between North and South Korea (my birthplace) comes to mind.  Both countries could be considered socialistic, but the differences in living conditions and freedoms between the two are overwhelming.

North Korea is a very dark country- dark from satellite view and very dark spiritually. If I were a North Korean homemaker I would have gotten up this morning off a hard floor, facing a day of brutally hard work, deprivation, and hopelessness.  My children would likely be half-starved and sick from drinking muddy, bacteria-ridden water, with little energy or motivation to play or learn due to malnutrition and lack of opportunity. I would be tempted to severe anxiety for my children, wondering what we were going to eat, wear, or whether we would survive when the bitter North Korean winter hit. If a soldier thought my daughter was beautiful and wanted to “have” her or my husband wanted to sell her into prostitution I would have little recourse.  Any attempt to evangelism or worship (unless it was a government monitored service) would probably mean imprisonment or death. As a North Korean citizen I must always show respect to the “dear and noble leaders”, one of whom is already in Hell.

In contrast, the South Korean homemaker rises (like myself) in a comfortable temperature-controlled home.  She and her family will have plenty of light, food, clean water, and clothing.  They actually might dicker over what they wanted for breakfast or even whether they are hungry enough to eat at all.  She and her husband might have a thriving business and a comfortable car which takes them along newly-paved roads through prosperous villages and countrysides, dotted here and there with pretty churches.  She can, without fear, rear her children, take them to church, and share the gospel with her neighbors.  When her children are sick, good medical help is available.

How can there be such a contrast between the two countries which share a common history?  I would like to think that it is because the gospel has shown into the lives of the South Korean people and because they chose to adopt a governmental structure  modeled after that of the United States.

The United States, like South Korea, could easily be defined as a socialist country.  Anyone can see that we have been and continue to descend into an abyss of government control.  But I would much rather live in the US than North Korea.  There is still a striking difference between the countries.  The blessings we enjoy ultimately come from God our heavenly father.  But my understanding is that we are also blessed because our forefathers were faithful  and structured a government that reflected(not perfectly) the principles they saw revealed in Scripture.  We are losing, but still retain many of the freedoms that others do not have.

Daniel, you were a man of fasting and prayer.  Some of our greatest weapons are  prayer and evangelism through the Word.  Ultimately the world must be changed through the gospel-change of hearts.  But don’t you think it is irresponsible and ungrateful  not to participate in a governmental process handed down to us through our faithful forefathers as an out working of their understanding of Holy Scripture.  Shouldn’t Christians participate while they still can exert even a little influence.  I am reminded of what was accomplished by the power of God through the obedience of a few men during Gideon’s time.  What is the saying? “All that is necessary for evil to prosper is for good men to do nothing.” To retreat and do nothing is to expedite the descent into tyranny.  I don’t want to live in a North Korea.

Twenty-three years ago a friend and I were arrested in front of an abortion clinic for trying to give literature to women going in for abortions.  We had been standing on city right- of -way and were within our legal rights. Unfortunately, our appointed judge was a committed feminist.   Later, during court proceedings, the attorneys were interviewing prospective jurors. At least one pro-life Christian asked to be excused from jury duty.  I wish she had stayed and participated.  If she had, we probably wouldn’t have been convicted.

Daniel, you were not the only man in the Scripture who faithfully participated within the corrupt social structure of his day. I am reminded of Hananiah, Mishael,  Azariah, the godly kings and judges of Israel, Nehemiah, Ezra and others.  Sometimes I observe  those of my particular theological “camp” -alongside their legitimate desire for doctrinal purity – refuse to work with others who are not perfect in their political views.  Do you think that working alongside such people constitutes an “unholy alliance”?  Or are we so perfectionistic  and demanding of others that we are paralyzed  in our ability to serve the Lord and work for good in our society.  Many will not accept any kind of incremental effort toward good.  What is wrong with incrementalism as long as ethical compromises are not made?  I must work incrementally with my children toward their sanctification.  How glad I am that God works incrementally with me!

Daniel, would you argue that the qualifications for a civil leader should be identical to those of a church leader?  If so, then there are only a few we could legitimately support.  I myself could never support any candidate who would not chose to protect innocent human life. Nor could I support a woman who would desert her little children to serve political office.  What qualifications should one look for?  Where do we draw the line?

If God wills, this Sunday morning our family will rise after a comfortable nights sleep to a satisfying breakfast (if they want it at all).  We will choose from a variety of nice clothes, board a comfortable air conditioned van and drive to our church to worship and listen to the precious Word preached – without fear or physical discomfort.  The only obstacle we have to sharing the gospel is our own cowardice or lack of love.  I often take these blessings for granted.  I know it is pleasing to the Lord to assemble together on Sunday. I know what is appropriate for Sunday.  But …Tuesday is voting day …

Unlike North Korea, many will go to the polls unhindered and unafraid.  Is it an exercise in futility, or worse, a compromise to participate in an evil system?  The Scripture says, “when the wicked rise in power, men hide themselves”  If I do not vote am I hiding myself and is that not shirking my responsibility?    Scripture also says,” a wise man is he who listens to counsel.”   Daniel, I wish you could give me some guidance  – where is my thinking wrong?  And…

Daniel … what should I do on Tuesday?

Respectfully,

A Christian registered to vote in Forsyth County

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Will You Pray for Georgia for the Next 12 days?

“To get  nations back on their feet, we must get down on our knees first.”

We are less than two weeks away to the July 20th elections. With each vote we have the opportunity to make a vote that is principled or one that is led by the political wind of the day.

2 Chronicles 7:13-14 states, “If My people who are called by My name humble themselves and pray and seek My face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, will forgive their sin and will heal their land.”

We are encouraging citizens in Georgia to join Georgia Right to Life for the next 12 days to pray specifically for the elections and to humble yourself before God. We want men and women in office who see each human being as intrinsically valuable.

Below are some prayer points for you to follow in your daily times of prayer:

Day 1: Personal Preparation Psalms 51

Day 2: God’s Ability to Help Us- Psalm 77:7-15

Day 3: For the Church to Recognize Its Responsibility- Matthew 5:13-16

Day 4:For God to Open the Eyes of Our Fellow Georgians- Psalm 73

Day 5: Revival and Spritual Awakening- Psalm 85:6-13

Day 6: God’s Intervention to Turn the Tide- 2 Chronicles 7:12-15

Day 7: Confusion and Corruption- Isaiah 3:12-13

Day 8: The Killing of the Unborn- Psalms 139:13-16

Day 9: For Every Person in Georgia to Realize They are Created in God’s Image- Genesis 1:26-27

Day 10: For the Church and Our Leaders to Wake Up to the Call to Adoption-James 1:27

Day 11: For Revival Worldwide- Psalms 117

Day 12: Praise God for What He Will Do- Psalms 149

These prayer points were adapted from Intouch Ministries 140 Days of Intercession for America prayer points. You can visit www.intouch.org for the full list of prayer points until the general election in November.

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COMING TO A BALLOT NEAR YOU: WHEN DOES LIFE BEGIN?

  FOR MORE INFORMATIONContact: Dan Becker danielbecker@grtl.org | (770) 667-3777

LAWRENCEVILLE, GA –  On July 20th of this year, the voters in over forty-five Georgia counties, representing all thirteen Congressional Districts, will have an opportunity to answer the pressing question of when life begins. Appearing on the July 20th Primary ballot is the following poll, “Do you support an amendment to the Georgia state constitution so as to provide that the paramount right to life is vested in each human being from the earliest biological beginning until natural death?”

Using a little known election law, Georgia Right to Life (GRTL), asked their local chapters to approach both Democrat and Republican Party County Chairman, with the request that they place a “Party question” on their respective ballots. Forty-five Republican Chairmen and one Democratic Chairman (Butts County) responded by requesting their local Election Board to certify the question for the July Primary.

Legally the outcome of the question bears no weight because it is intended to be a straw poll of local county voters on the issue of when life begins.  Politically, it will serve as a barometer of local sentiment on the sanctity of life. Based upon Georgia House Resolution 5 (HR 5), sponsored last session by Rep. Martin Scott, the question is asked so that the pro-life strength of each county can be assessed, precinct by precinct.

“We have some confusion among some of our elected ‘pro-life’ officials when it comes time to actually fight for — and support — meaningful pro-life legislation in the Georgia House” says Mike Griffin, Legislative Director for GRTL, “this will remove all doubt as to where their ‘moral compass’ should point . . . their own constituents will have the opportunity to weigh in on the greatest human rights issue of our day. This has huge political ramifications.”

“Our polling shows that Georgia is one of the most pro-life states in the nation” says Daniel Becker, President of Georgia Right to Life. A poll from Strategic Vision shows that fifty-seven percent of voters favor the overthrow of Roe vs. Wade. This is roughly 20 points above the next nearest state polled.

“This fact does not seem to be lost on our elected officials, particularly, as they consider running for a statewide office”, says Becker. “During the 2008 Presidential primary, Georgia’s Republican voters selected the most pro-life candidate in the entire field, Gov. Mike Huckabee” said Becker. Huckabee was the only viable candidate that endorsed a Personhood Amendment at the state constitutional level which would define when life begins and when it should be protected by law.

 “As of today, all six of the Republican front-runners for Governor have endorsed a Personhood Amendment to the Georgia Constitution,” said Melanie Crozier, PAC Director for GRTL. “These include Senator Jeff Chapman, Congressman Nathan Deal, Senator Eric Johnson, Mr. Ray McBerry and Commissioner John Oxendine. Former Secretary of State, Karen Handel, while not endorsed by GRTL because of her opposition to pro-life positions, still maintains her support of a Personhood Amendment.” says Crozier.

Opposition to the question has arisen regarding the concern that it would outlaw capital punishment, contraceptives or implementation of advanced directives. HR 5 very specifically addresses these concerns:

H.R. 5

“(c) Nothing in this Paragraph shall be construed to limit the right of the State of Georgia to use capital punishment to enforce the laws of this state.

(d) Nothing in this Paragraph shall be construed to limit the right of the State of Georgia to allow and regulate the use of advance directives or living wills.

(e) Nothing in this Paragraph shall be construed to limit the right of the State of Georgia to allow and regulate the use of contraceptives.”

“We have not ‘cherry-picked’ only the conservative counties for this effort, but have included more liberal metro counties, such as Fulton and DeKalb. In each of these more liberal counties, as individual House districts are polled, the positive results will be useful in convincing the Georgia House members of the need for this important Amendment,” said Crozier, “Even the pro-abortion House members may be surprised to discover the depth of pro-life sentiment in their district.”

Other more conservative Atlanta metro counties who will be voting include: Gwinnett, Cherokee, Fayette, Paulding and Carroll. Other metro counties, elsewhere around the state, include: Muscogee (Columbus), Hall (Gainesville), Chatham (Savannah), Troup (LaGrange), Tift (Tifton), Thomas (Thomasville), Ware (Waycross), Loundes (Valdosta), Colquitt (Moultrie) and Glynn (Brunswick and St. Simons).

The question will also appear on the Fannin County Republican ballot, home district of Speaker David Ralston.

Georgia Right to Life promotes respect and effective legal protection for all human life from its earliest biological beginning through natural death.  GRTL is one of a number of organizations that have adopted Personhood as the most effective pro-life strategy for the 21st century.

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America Needs More Uncle Toms!

by Catherine Davis, Director of Minority Outreach
October 15, 2009

In a meeting recently, one of the speakers noted that the murder of Emmett Till gave face to the Civil Rightsemmitt till movement in the US. So when I saw a copy of a DVD about Emmett, I purchased it. I have watched the Untold Story of Emmett Louis Till five times. There were things in the documentary that I did not know or had not heard. I did not know and had not heard that there were two black men alleged to have held Emmett on the truck while his murderers drove him to the spot where he was killed. It was later reported one of them was seen washing Emmett’s blood out of the truck, claiming it was deer blood. The second man, who claimed he was not there, recounted the events of that ugly night using the same words that the murderers gave in their Look Magazine confession, almost verbatim. He was the only black person noted to have given this version of the events of that night.

Similar expressions of betrayal in the black community continue today. And, depending on who is making the argument, the betrayal can take a number of forms. Just this week several pastors expressed their outrage and concern when a leading Bishop of one of the largest black denominations in America endorsed the President’s health care bill. This Bishop claims a belief in the sanctity of life yet the bill he endorsed has an amendment that expressly calls for public funding of abortion. In response, a pastor of that denomination immediately called the prolife pastors Uncle Toms and Republican brown nosers. This labeling was despite the fact that many of the pastors expressing their concerns were Independents and Democrats.

abortion is not healthcareAt a time when the black community is experiencing some of the most horrific problems of our lives, we find the community is fractured and crumbling because of racial and political game playing. A frightening trend has emerged and if it is not checked may mean the complete destruction of a people. That trend is one that forbids criticism of a black Democrat, no matter how detrimental their politics and policies may be. If I were to criticize the President for his policies that I perceive as deadly to the black community, for example, I too would be labeled an Uncle Tom, and in some circles, may be harmed physically.

Over the last forty five years, there has been little if any improvement in the conditions blacks face. In fact, some would argue that since the passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1964things have worsened considerably. Despite having a large contingent of political representatives at every level of local, state and federal government, blacks face daunting numbers when considering healthcare, crime, education, incarceration and employment to name a few. Diabetes, heart disease, HIV/AIDS, hypertension and a host of other diseases run rampant. Blacks are disproportionately represented among homicide victims and offenders according to the Department of Justice (http://www.ojp.usdoj.gov/bjs/homicide/race.htm).  

Nationally, over forty seven percent of our black youth drop, out of school (http://www.cnn.com/2009/US/06/18/bia.saving.desmond/index.html) and among black men, the dropout rate soars to over fifty percent (http://www.nytimes.com/2006/03/20/national/20blackmen.html?_r=2).

 Forty eight percent of our teenagers have sexually transmitted diseases (http://blogs.usatoday.com/oped/2008/04/black-teen-std.html).

 In the twenty five states with large black populations, 24-77% of those incarcerated are black (http://www.gibbsmagazine.com/blacks_in_prisons.htm).

Unemployment for blacks topped 15% in September (http://stats.bls.gov/news.release/empsit.nr0.htm). And these numbers are just a tip of the iceberg of all the problems facing the black community in America today.

I attended a church service in 2008 where chiefs, tribal leaders, and ministers from every tribe in Africa that sold blacks into slavery were in attendance. They had come to repent to American blacks for the betrayal their ancestors had perpetrated because of greed, selfishness and jealousy. I wonder if any of us have the fortitude to repent for our betrayals.

 In the book of Ezekiel, Chapter 22, verse 30 it says God looked for someone to stand in the gap. But He could not finduncle toms cabin one. Contrary to the common belief of some about Uncle Tom, he did not betray his people. Uncle Tom stood in the gap for Eliza. He refused to betray her to the evil Simon Legree. Unlike Uncle Tom, the two men in the Emmett Till case were unwilling to die to keep Emmett alive. They betrayed him unto his death and to this day have not been brought to justice. Unlike Uncle Tom, some pastors will celebrate a leader that chooses political rather than moral/Godly stands. The pastors who spoke up against the endorsement of the President’s bill are indeed Uncle Toms. I applaud their willingness to stand and not betray their people to those are targeting us and who want us dead. I pray there are more who will stand in the gap to reverse the death style the hounds of hell have unleashed against the black community. Indeed, America needs more Uncle Toms – those who will not betray their people for personal, political or social gain. Are you one?

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