By Don Feder - Predictions:
At least three red-state Democrats will lose their seats in November because they voted against confirming Kavanaugh . With a 54/46 split in the Senate, it will be much easier to confirm Trump’s next Supreme Court nominee. Thanks, #MeToo-ers.
After a decent interval following this election, West Virginia Senator Joe Manchin will cross the aisle and become a Republican, realizing that a Democrat has no future in the Mountain State and he has no future in the Democratic Party. That will make the party split 55/45.
Senator Lisa Murkowski will either retire at the end of her current term or be primaried out. Sarah Palin is looking at the race in 2022. In a state like Alaska, we can do better than an alias Republican.
Despite her stand on a number of social issues, Susan Collins will become a conservative folk hero, not just for her vote but because of her remarks before the vote. Her name now tops the left’s enemies list. Former Obama State Department tool, Susan Rice, is thinking of running against her – and would spend the campaign explaining why she spent weeks lying about Benghazi in 2012.
On the court, Brett Kavanaugh will not be a hard-core constitutionalist, as many supposed. But he’s decent, thoughtful and will be an improvement over Kennedy.
By Myrna Flynn - We will not ask you to enjoy this collection. But we will ask you to learn from it, to share it, to be inspired by it.
It’s a fair ask. And a pertinent one. The collection to which Jack Fowler, a National Review Institute Trustee, refers is a set of 31 National Review articles and editorials compiled within a first-of-its-kind “pro-life reader” titled Standing Athwart a Culture of Death. Curated by Kathryn Jean Lopez, senior fellow at the Institute and National Review editor-at-large, the writings span the four decades since seven men handed Roe & Doe to the nation, thus legalizing abortion at any time and for any reason during a pregnancy.
Though consistently and ardently pro-life since junior high, due mostly to simple ethics and elementary biology, in spite of being a practicing Catholic, I’d never taken the time to review the particulars of the legal, political and cultural rationales that are the foundations of the pro-life movement. Ever thought about what are, essentially, the “best practices” of advocating this conviction? Me neither, until I read a 1996 “statement of principle” penned by dozens of pro-life scholars and nonprofit leaders, which the magazine published. Every one of the 26 principles still applies today. This is where the overarching value in the book lies: though seemingly dated, notably on the current media landscape where what one read last night is archaic this morning, Lopez presents timeless pieces, each seemingly more significant than the last, for anyone who cares not just about abortion, but about American society.
The oldest selection is a June 1973 editorial which provided an overview of the Human Life Amendment to the Constitution, sponsored by Senator James Buckley and six of his Senate colleagues, who spanned a “geographically, ideologically and religiously diverse group.”
The most recent piece, published in November 2017, pays homage to Representative Henry Hyde. A decade after his death, Chuck Donovan reminds the reader that, “At least 600,000 of our fellow Americans under the age of ten are alive today because of the famous amendment that bears his name, the one that treats abortion for what it is – the antithesis of medicine, a violation of the fundamental right of the most vulnerable human beings in our midst.”
Human beings? In a uterus?
Between the two end points on the book’s timeline, again thanks to Lopez’ effective editing, writers concretely and smartly address every argument in the abortion debate, including the human life issue in what may be the book’s most powerful piece.
In her 2016 article, “When Abortion Suddenly Stopped Making Sense,” Frederica Mathewes-Green recalls her memory of the Roe decision. “I was a college student – an anti-war, mother-earth, feminist, hippie college student.” With a “legalize abortion” bumper sticker, Mathewes-Green notes, “We knew nothing of fetal development . . . It would be another 15 years or so before pregnant couples could show off sonograms of their babies, shocking us with the obvious humanity of the unborn.”
In 1976, she read an Esquire magazine article called “What I Saw at the Abortion” that described in graphic detail the reporter’s observations during an abortion of a 19-week-old fetus; I choose to withhold those details here. Mathewes-Green changed her mind in that moment. “Once I realized the inherent violence of abortion, none of the feminist arguments made sense,” she said.
“Nobody wants to have an abortion," Mathewes-Green writes. "And if nobody wants to have an abortion, why are women doing it 2,800 times a day? If women are doing something 2,800 times daily that they don’t want to do, this is not liberation we’ve won. We are colluding in a strange new form of oppression.” She later notes that, from the moment of conception, three essential characteristics of human life exist: a living entity with human cells, growth and unique DNA.
Indeed, the recurring message throughout the book is, as conveyed in a 1989 column by Richard John Neuhaus, “the abortion debate is not really over the question of when human life begins” but rather what moral and legal obligations -- and exceptions -- should be considered when our society concerns itself with something that is biologically human.
Neuhaus writes, “With respect to the unborn, the question is: What is this? Maybe the question is: Who is this? Most people readily recognize that the 'what' is human life that, barring natural misfortune or deliberate attack, will become the ‘who’ of a person possessing rights. Certainly the question is not ‘when.’ Time lines that allow life to be attacked at one point but not at a later point cannot help appearing to be arbitrary, because in fact they are arbitrary.”
Beyond the question of humanity, the book's topics include the challenges of adoption and related systemic/policy failures; political flip-flopping/conversions; states making inroads at the grassroots level; issues resulting from egg donation; neonatal hospice; the role of fathers in supporting (or not supporting) women who face unplanned pregnancies; the eugenic origins of Planned Parenthood; and how pro-life advocates should work to roll back Roe.
This book showcases the intelligence and eloquence one would expect in a National Review publication and, in a relatively compact 140 pages, includes an impressive amount of data, wisdom, common sense and deeply thought-provoking content, even for . . . especially for, a life-long pro-lifer. In response to Fowler's initial statement, it is not an enjoyable read. Yet I found it an invaluable use of my time and attention.
Chuck Donovan, in his tribute to Henry Hyde, writes, "Most of those who have been involved in leading [pro-life] advocacy roles know it as an inescapable but thankless task." After reading this book, I gratefully commend National Review Institute on a job well-done. My bet is you will, too.
Geoff Diehl for U.S. SenateWe, who are pro-life, have an excellent opportunity to elect a candidate for the U.S. Senate from Massachusetts who is also pro-life. He has the rare combination of being fiscally and socially responsible, yet at the same time he values the sanctity of life. He is socially responsible since he believes in helping others and has a track record of doing so. He is fiscally responsible and as a State Representative, among other fiscal steps he took, he was able to bring about the defeat of an automatic gas tax increase that would have cost taxpayers over $2 billion! Most Massachusetts taxpayers are unaware of the fact that the Massachusetts state debt in fiscal year 2015 was a whopping $75.3 billion according to the U.S. Census Bureau. It is higher now. This is precisely why we need a good Republican representative in the U.S. Senate in Washington.For a lot of reasons, Geoff is the right man. The pro-abortion movement is spinning out of control. Planned Parenthood that takes the lives of over 330,000 babies per year receives $500 million in federal taxpayer money. Yet they also got caught red handed in the horrendous act of selling baby body parts. Further, there are many Democratic members of both the House and Senate who are pushing for full term abortions! If you remember, Hillary Clinton during her Presidential campaign stated she was in support of full term abortions and justified it as being a "woman's choice". Full term! Just think about a beautiful child's life being taken through the brutal procedure of a full term abortion.This is why, we need someone like Geoff in Washington...for fiscal, and social responsibility; and for being a representative for the sanctity of life. His opponent is Elizabeth Warren, who is also a full term pro-abortion proponent.Geoff has shown that he has courage. Recently he spoke out in favor of Supreme Court nominee, Judge Brett Kavanaugh, and his beautiful family. It is so easy to sit back and do nothing. Not Geoff! He also has two beautiful daughters and I am sure that he can only imagine what it is like to have his family be so unjustly treated, with an attempt to destroy them. I highly respect Geoff Diehl for speaking out, especially when he is involved in an election campaign.We have a great choice in the midterm elections in November. Please strongly consider a vote for Geoff Diehl. Get out there to vote and encourage others to do so. This, for a lot of reasons, is an extremely important election.Al DiLasciaChicopee, MA
By Dr. Trevor Stammers - It is impossible to separate the selling of human organs from people trafficking.
When in 2016, an editor from a leading academic publisher approached me about contributing a book chapter on the ethics of organ markets, I readily agreed thinking that this would entail little more than many other previous commissions. With most bioethical issues, the arguments pro and con are usually abstractions to be weighed and evaluated and a conclusion eventually drawn – or sometimes avoided in order to prolong ethical fence-sitting.
This topic however did prove to be rather different. One of early findings was that once organ acquisition from the living moves from being a matter of gifting the organ by donation to gaining the organ by financial transaction, a line is crossed which changes the whole environment within which transplantation takes place in a society. Once you have an organ market it makes people think more carefully about why they should be an altruistic donor. This I could have predicted but the second finding however took me completely by surprise. It was quite impossible to write about organ markets without writing about people trafficking. It soon became clear that wherever people trafficking is happening, organ trafficking will either be a part of it or closely linked and organ trafficking is difficult to disentangle –at least at the margins – from organ sales.
Headlines such as “Pakistani police rescue 24 from organ trafficking gang” and “Boy of 12 smuggled into the UK for gang to sell his body parts” are a far cry from the kind of ‘abstractions’ I thought I would be dealing with a few months before. I contacted the editor and said I didn’t think it would be possible to write about organ markets in isolation from organ trafficking – in the largest anthology on organ trafficking I could locate the majority of the chapters were about organ markets- and she agreed that I could broaden the chapter out.
Universal Prohibition Advocated
Examination of websites such as those of the UN, World Health Organisation, The Transplantation Society and the International Society of Nephrology revealed that every international declaration on people trafficking (such as the UNs Palermo protocol) specifies organ trafficking as a specific form of exploitation linked to people trafficking and declarations on organ trafficking (such as the Declaration of Istanbul) as well as prohibiting the practice also stress that “organ donation should be a financially neutral act”.
Despite such universal condemnation however, it is reckoned that around 10% of organs worldwide are trafficked meaning that an illegally acquired organ is transplanted every hour. How is it then that the practice remains so persistently prevalent?
A Chorus of Approval
One of the factors involved is that advocates of organ markets, though they may well be motivated by a genuine desire to see fewer patients die from lack of an available matching organ also tend to play down the reality of the links with people trafficking.
There are three main groups of people involved in promoting organ sales – philosophers (especially ‘practical’ ones), economists (particularly neoclassical ones) and doctors (particularly those who work in private healthcare systems).
Once this became clear, the task of the research then became to understand the arguments from each of these three groups seeking to justify payments for organs. I then sought to see whether the claims made in such arguments actually worked out in the real world and looked at the experiences and findings of researchers working in India, the Philippines and other poor parts of the world.
Finally since most of those advocating organ sales pointed to Iran as the shining paragon of how organ markets work, I then looked at reports of what is happening in Iran. Whilst it is true that Iran has no waiting list for organ transplants and is the only country in the world in which this is the case, there is a price to be paid and since the majority of organ movement is out of the poor and into the rich, it is not difficult to work out who is paying it.
My findings are due to be published in the spring of 2019.
Dr Trevor Stammers is Reader in Bioethics and Director of the Centre for Bioethics and Emerging Technologies in the UK. He is a writer, blogger and occasional broadcaster on bioethical issues and was previously in clinical practice for over thirty years. This article is republished from THE JAM NETWORK blog with permission and also appeared on Mercatornet.com.
With the election less than 60 days away, almost every poll shows Trump losing support. It’s a carefully orchestrated campaign to depress the Republican turnout in November.
Headline on September 10 story, “CNN Poll: Trump approval down 6 points in a month, hits low among independents.” And on NPR, “Midwest Abandons Trump, Fueling Democratic Advantage for Control of Congress.” The message: It’s all over except the cheering. Welcome Speaker Pelosi – or worse.
One thing none of these stories takes into account is the way they reflect the media’s success at smearing the President.
Many who will vote Republican in November are afraid to admit it to pollsters, for fear they’ll be thought of as a white nationalist-supremacist-bigot-Alt-Right hater. But in the privacy of the voting booth, they’ll vote their pocketbook, border security and the flag – as well as revulsion over the tactics of the so-called Resistance.
Remember the shocked faces at the Networks on election night 2016? Trump was winning -- but how could that be? All of the polls showed him losing in a rout of epic proportions. Remember: “Increasingly narrow path to the White House for Trump”? Love that narrow path!
In 11 different polls taken days before the election, Trump’s disapproval rating ranged from a high of 61% to a low of 55%. His favorability ratings were generally in the mid-30s. On favorability, Hillary had almost a 4-point advantage over the man who beat her.
Hoping we’ll forget what happened in 2016, the same pollsters are at it again.
Conclusion: Work like hell for Republican candidates, pray and ignore opinion polls.
The MCFL Federal PAC, an entity registered with the FEC to support or oppose candidates, has announced its endorsement of John Hugo in the 5th Congressional District. From its recent announcement:
"The Massachusetts Citizens for Life Federal Political Action Committee is pleased to endorse John Hugo for Congress in the 5th Congressional District Republican Primary," said John Roe, PAC Chairman. "There is a stark contrast between Hugo and his opponent on the life issues. John Hugo is pro-life. His opponent is not”
The winner of the Primary will face Congresswoman Katherine Clark, a leader of the pro-abortion force in the U.S. House, in the November general election.
"All voters who are concerned with the right to life and with the protection of the most vulnerable members of the human family should vote to send John Hugo to Congress, so that he can work to advance vital pro-life public policies," concluded Mr. Roe.
This announcement is for informational purposes.
To learn more about where various candidates stand, visit the legislators and candidates section of our website.
Once Roe v. Wade is overturned, it will be necessary for us to amend the Massachusetts Constitution to protect life at all stages. This Life Institute analysis of the recent vote in Ireland highlights the things we will face. It is very helpful for us to begin thinking and acting now.
People often ask how Dr. Bill Lawton (left) is doing so we are grateful to share Patsy's Journal entry.
By Patsy Lawton
It is amazing how the weeks fly by and how grateful we are to realize that Bill passed the one year mark since his diagnosis on June 23rd. Each day with Bill on earth is truly a gift from God!
Since the last journal update on June 4th, Bill has been on second-line FDA approved chemo drugs with more serious side effects. Over the past 5 cycles (given every other week) Bill has experienced weight loss, GI challenges, more fatigue & weakness and one 4 day hospital. After preaching low or no salt for his whole professional life, Bill needs to add salt due to very low blood pressures. Each day since on the new chemo regiment, Bill is juggling the ideal balance of the GI track not moving too slowly or too fast and controlling the abdominal pain without feeling too tired, weak or sleepy. We continue to appreciate the excellent medical care at UMass in Worcester & the guidance of Bill's oncologist. The next CT scan is scheduled for the end of this month which will indicate the effectiveness of the current treatment.
We continue to be surrounded by loving, praying faithful friends and family bringing us joy, strength and courage. During the past 6 weeks we've enjoyed wonderful visits with our son and family from KS (including grandsons from Chicago & Denver), our covenant friends & pastor from church, our good friend from Egypt, the Ryan family and daily visits with Jeanne, John, Anela & John.
Each day we are greeted by the beauty of God's creation with the wonders and sights of living on Lake Singletary. Our special friend, the great heron, hangs out on our dock or raft. We've both enjoyed boat rides and "swimming"/floating in the lake. Daily delights include walks in the yard to see the beautiful flowers, check out the vegetable garden and see what the deer have been nibbling on overnight! Bill has taken to heart the advice of his "big" sister, Jan, to focus on the good parts of each day. We are reminded and thankful that "The faithful love of the Lord never ends. His mercies never cease. Great is his faithfulness; his mercies begin afresh each morning." Lamentations 3:22-23
Thanks for your great love & care and the many ways you keep in touch with us.
Hugs, Patsy & Bill
In Understanding what’s behind the ceaseless attempts to discredit single-issue voters, i.e., pro-lifers, National Right to Life News Editor Dave Andrusko makes some excellent points about the effectiveness of being single issue and why that bothers the other side so much.
"The goal is either to discredit pro-lifers in general or to announce that someone has discovered (voilà!) that single-issue pro-life groups are passé. Never mind all that this insistence not to be dragged into other issues has accomplished against pro-abortion forces that have access to money by the billions and the unwavering support of virtually the entirety of the
cultural/media establishment. They know better."
Well put, Dave!