Wednesday, September 30, 2009

A Parable for The Church of God In Christ [SK]

The Church of God in Christ (COGIC), which claims to be pro-life, has issued a statement calling on all denominations to do the right thing and support President Obama’s health care reform plan. (Note: The President doesn’t have a plan of his own. What the COGIC really means is House bill HR 3200, which the President supports.) The writers of the statement demonstrate a genuine and laudable concern for the poor who cannot afford medical coverage. However, to the surprise of many pro-life advocates, the drafters of the statement take the President at his word that abortion will not be funded in a health care bill. They call on Christians of good will to set aside their political views and support the President’s reform efforts, which they insist are Biblically mandated.

I don't question the good intentions of those drafting the statement. And unlike some, I don't question their pro-life sentiments. But are Biblically informed pro-lifers unreasonable to remain skeptical of the President's plan? Consider the following parable.

It’s 1860. The President of the United States is pushing a controversial economic recovery package that will provide government subsidies to plantation owners struggling to make ends meet. The President has a point: Statistics show that 400,000 southern farms are without an economic safety net and thus face bankruptcy or foreclosure in the near feature. Should that collapse happen, mounting personal losses would adversely impact the national economy. To press the point further, the President invokes Biblical commands to love our neighbors and recruits sympathetic clergy to convey that view to the faithful.

There’s a rub, however. Although the President denies it, multiple sources—both independent and political— confirm that his economic recovery plan would allow government funds for the purchase of slaves. Collectively, the nation’s newspapers—universally sympathetic to the President’s views—come to the same conclusion though it bears little on their eager support for the plan. Meanwhile, congressional members who support slavery have commanding majorities in both the House and Senate. They see the practice as essential to any recovery plan. The President’s political position is near impregnable: He doesn’t need a single vote from the opposing party to pass his plan. Moreover the speaker of the House insists that any plan for economic recovery must fund the purchase of slaves as a necessary part of jumpstarting the Southern economy. If need be, he’s prepared to force a straight party line vote to get the desired result. All indications are he can deliver on his promise. Indeed, the legislative committee considering the President’s recovery plan voted down every single amendment that contained specific language forbidding the use of funds for slavery.

As for the President, his views on slavery are undeniable. While a senator in the Mississippi state house, he thrice voted to deny legal protection to any slave who escaped his master and sought refuge in a neutral territory. As a Presidential candidate, he emphatically assured the nation’s leading pro-slavery group—Planned Laborhood—that his first act as President would be to sign the Freedom of Ownership Act, which would overturn all meaningful restrictions on slavery. He repeatedly stated that slave ownership was an essential economic right. During his first week as President, he issued an executive order funding the acquisition of slaves in foreign countries. One month later, he overturned existing funding restrictions on using slaves for medical experiments.

Despite these facts, the President—without a shred of evidence—calls anti-slavery advocates opposing his plan liars. In an unprecedented move, he submits a written speech to Congress insisting that his plan does not fund the acquisition of slaves, though again he does nothing to refute the specific charge—attested to by multiple sources—that his plan does in fact do just that. Two weeks later, he gets a valuable assist when The Southern Baptist Convention signs a statement urging clergy of all faiths to follow its lead in endorsing the President’s plan. The White pastors drafting the statement insist they are anti-slavery, but take the President at his word that the practice will not be funded.

Their statement reads in part as follows:

"Based on our understanding of the Holy Scriptures it is not only our mandate to encourage men and women to come into right relationship with their Creator, but also to proclaim and advocate justice and compassion throughout all creation.

'Open your mouth for the speechless,
In the cause of all who are appointed to die.
Open your mouth, judge righteously,
And plead the cause of the poor and needy.'
Prov 31:8-9 NKJV

We are here today to speak on behalf of millions of Americans who cannot afford or obtain adequate economic provisions. In this the richest country in the world 400,000Americans are without an economic safety net. Because of this, they and their children face untold hardship and unnecessary suffering. Millions more will soon face similar challenges. In the midst of this crisis, they face limited economic opportunities that leave them exposed and unable to meet the needs of their families.

The Southern Baptist Convention calls upon the other major White denominations, and our brothers and sisters of all races in their major denominations and the rest of the faith community to set a moral example which moves our country beyond the noise of racial division and partisanship by supporting the President’s courageous initiative to address this vital issue. People of faith all over this country have a responsibility to stand for the millions who suffer from a lack of adequate provision by pleading the cause of the needy, and raising their voices in support of the President’s economic reform agenda.

Question: Would any rational person today consider anti-slavery Christians unreasonable for distrusting the President and Congress on this?

Thursday, September 24, 2009

LTI Podcast Episode 19 - Death Panels [Serge]

LTI Podcast #19 - The Death Panel Episode Rich and Jay have a roundtable discussion responding to Sarah Palin's "death panel" charge. Is she guilty of crass Republican propaganda, or does she make a valid point about a possible consequence of health care rationing? Rich also continues his series about the medical literature discussing the impact of RU-486 on abortion access in the United States. Was the introduction of RU-486 a decade ago a game changer or has it had little effect?

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Fair and Balanced? [Elizabeth]

You may or may not have heard the news that a pro-lifer was gunned down in Michigan Friday by a man who said he was offended by the activist's anti-abortion material. Harlan James Drake, 33, was arrested Friday and has been criminally charged with the murder of 63-year-old Jim Pouillon.

I learned of the tragic, senseless crime from a coworker. I did not, however, find out about it through conventional media. I hadn't seen the story on the web (late in the day it appeared on CNN). I watched the nightly news and there wasn't a mention of it. In fact, no one seemed to be talking about it — and perhaps it's because recaps of the 9/11 memorials dominated headlines.

And, perhaps not.

When a deranged pro-life assassin murdered George Tiller, the world sat up and took notice. Suddenly, pro-lifers were dangerous and our entire movement was promoting similar acts of intolerance and violence.

Quite contrarily, headlines in the coming days won't be pondering whether hate crimes by pro-choicers are on the rise. Unfair generalizations won't lead talking heads to conclude that the pro-choice movement has become irrational and dangerous.

In a letter to the editor published in the Sept. 5 Washington Post, Dr. Willie J. Parker addresses the "fear of harassment" that he says is keeping some doctors from performing abortions. He promises to stand defiantly to "give women the care they need." Parker even cites the parable of the good Samaritan as his reason for seeking abortion training in 2006. He challenges others to stand firm with him.

Newsweek published a several-page spread on Dr. LeRoy Carhart — one of this country's few remaining late-term-abortion providers. In it, Carhart was called "the abortion evangelist." The article details why Carhart will never stop doing abortions, though he says he's a target for anti-abortion violence.

Numerous other media outlets have lined up to interview Carhart about his bravery in the face of adversity.

What are they rallying against? Are there untold numbers of radical pro-lifers banning together to stop these abortionists at any cost? Or are we being unfairly demonized by the media?

In Ann Coulter's "49 Million to Five" column written in the wake of the shooting of late-term abortionist George Tiller, Coulter says that, in a country that is more than 50 percent pro-life — and 80 percent opposed to late-term abortions — only five abortionists have been killed since Roe v. Wade was passed into law in 1973.

If that's true, then why is the media coverage and the rhetoric biasing the public to our cause? From where did these irrational conclusions emanate?

One thing's for sure — there's a double standard in America.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Another thought... [Megan]

Great blog, Serge. Thanks for shedding light on that issue. I couldn’t help but notice — to draw out the “cognitive dissonance” a bit further — that in this case, the government is advocating the preservation of life based on the level of brain development, while many justify taking the lives of the unborn on the same grounds.

Cognitive Dissonance in the American Medical Association [Serge]

I've been detailing some examples of cultural cognitive dissonance during my series on the LTI podcasts. However, here's an example of significant dissonance within the largest medical association in our country. The question at hand is whether or not the adolescent brain is capable of making informed decisions that they can be responsible for.

In 2004, the AMA wrote an amicus brief in which they claimed that adolescents, even those that are 16 or 17 should not be eligible for the death penalty because their brains are not as developed as an adult's brain:

The adolescent’s mind works differently from ours.
Parents know it. This Court has said it. Legislatures have
presumed it for decades or more. And now, new scientific
evidence sheds light on the differences.

Scientists have documented the differences along several
dimensions. Adolescents as a group, even at the age of 16 or
17, are more impulsive than adults. They underestimate risks
and overvalue short-term benefits. They are more susceptible
to stress, more emotionally volatile, and less capable of
controlling their emotions than adults.

In short, the average adolescent cannot be expected to
act with the same control or foresight as a mature adult.
Behavioral scientists have observed these differences for
some time. Only recently, however, have studies yielded
evidence of concrete differences that are anatomically based.
Cutting-edge brain imaging technology reveals that regions
of the adolescent brain do not reach a fully mature state until
after the age of 18. These regions are precisely those
associated with impulse control, regulation of emotions, risk
assessment, and moral reasoning. Critical developmental
changes in these regions occur only after late adolescence. (emphasis mine)

The AMA notes that parents know that adolescents do have the decision making capacity as adults do and therefore are unable to make an informed decision. For that reason, the AMA believes that a 17 year old who decides to kidnap their neighbor and brutally torture and kill them should be immune to capital punishment.

However, there is an area in which the AMA believes a 15 year old girl not only has the capacity to make an informed decision that she can take full responsibility for, but that she also has the capacity to decide when her parents need to be informed of this decision. Of course, this is in the area of abortion. Their ethics paper on the topic is from 1993, but is still the prevailing opinion in the AMA:

Physicians should not feel or be compelled to require minors to involve their parents before deciding whether to undergo an abortion. The patient, even an adolescent, generally must decide whether, on balance, parental involvement is advisable. Accordingly, minors should ultimately be allowed to decide whether parental involvement is appropriate. Physicians should explain under what circumstances (eg, life-threatening emergency) the minor’s confidentiality will need to be abrogated.

Physicians should try to ensure that minor patients have made an informed decision after giving careful consideration to the issues involved. They should encourage their minor patients to consult alternative sources if parents are not going to be involved in the abortion decision.
Let's see if I have this correct. Because of the fact that their brain is unable to process information like an adult, and that their brain physiology makes them prone to emotional decisions without the ability for critical thinking, teens should not be held responsible for capital punishment if they murder their neighbor. However, even younger teens, who find themselves in a highly emotional, crisis state of an unintended pregnancy, have the capacity to make a decision without parental involvement that can effect them for the rest of their lives. They are the ones that should make the sober decision of involving their parents in what may the one of most important decisions they will ever make, and one that many girls before them have grown to regret.

HT: I first read of the brief on capital punishment in Miriam Grossman's excellent book "You're Teaching My Child What?: A Physician Exposes the Lies of Sex Ed and How They Harm Your Child" available here.

Busting Myths About Abortion & Health Care Reform – Part 3 & 4 [Josh Brahm]

Myth: The recently introduced Capps Amendment forbids abortion.

Fact: Read it. It does nothing of the sort.

The “Capps Amendment” is a phony compromise that was offered by Rep. Capps, who has voted against pro-lifers 100% of the time during her 11 years in the House. The Capps Amendment says private health plans wouldn’t have to cover abortion, but the public option could if the Health and Human Services Department wanted it to. For those of you familiar with the Secretary of HHS, Kathleen Sebelius, you can see how that’s not a compromise at all. It’s just more word games. As Doug Johnson writes, “In other words, abortionists would send bills to the federal insurance plan and receive payment checks from the federal treasury.”

Myth: Pro-lifers are overreacting because under the Capps Amendment, it won’t be taxpayer dollars paying for abortions, it would be the premiums paying for abortions.

Fact: The tax-payer money as well as the money from premiums would go in one big pot. Money from the pot would go to pay for abortions. I don’t buy the idea that the government will be earmarking in this issue based on the sources of the funds, as a brief study of federal finance history shows they have rarely done in the past.

In other words, it’s like United Way. If you donate to United Way, your money goes into a big pot, and then United Way chooses how to distribute the money in the pot.

Even if somehow the government did distinguish the money, you’d still have the issue of churches or pro-life groups that choose to use the public option, or can’t afford a more expensive option paying premiums, who would pay for abortions.

All that to say, there won’t be a simple solution available, like writing “not for abortions” in the memo of your check to the government.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Some thoughts on human worth and 'taboo' things [Megan]

Last week I stood before a group of teens and gave a presentation on abortion.

It was the first time I stood before a group of students I’d never met and talked about an issue with which many of them were unfamiliar prior to preparing for the day’s class. They weren’t exactly chatty — How many young people are when you’re zeroing in on a subject that society considers taboo? — but they were attentive, respectful and seemingly thoughtful about the points raised.

Looking out at their furrowed brows in a room silent enough to hear a pin drop, I was reminded of my reasons for standing in front of them. The reminder fanned to flame my purpose for being there, for talking about uncomfortable issues, for telling others things they oftentimes don’t like to hear.

I am a Christ-follower. As such, I am — among many other things — considered an ambassador, a representative of the one who sent me. As a Christ-follower, I am a representative of God. What a weighty responsibility! When I speak, I speak for the Father.

As one who addresses the world around me on behalf of Christ, it is imperative that I recognize what is important to Him, and to make what is important to Him important to me.

Even an elementary understanding of the Bible leaves one realizing — whether that individual is aware of it or not — that human beings are extremely important to God. God created human beings in His image. I can’t explain that fully. No one can. But I don’t have to. Simply grasping that the almighty Sovereign made us with some speck of likeness to Himself is enough to make us — each and every one of us — extremely valuable. And in all our uniqueness, that speck of our Creator that exists in every human being gives every single one an equal measure of value.

How valuable are we? That’s another one I can’t quite respond to with a concise answer. There are simply no words, no flowery adjectives or gut-wrenching verbs that can express the gratitude and awe of the price paid for human beings to receive life a second time. “For God so loved the world that He gave his only begotten son, that whosoever believes in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life” (John 3:16).

I have always wondered why the author of John’s gospel used that funny word, “begotten,” in the middle of what is probably the most well-known verse associated with Christianity. I’ve always thought it a funny word. It was only recently I realized the magnificence of that word choice and what it reveals to the reader.

Basic biogenesis tells us that things reproduce after their own kind. In other words, our God of order made this world so that frogs beget frogs, cats beget cats and human beings beget human beings. This law is very helpful as we navigate issues regarding what kind of “things” the unborn are. This verse tells us that Jesus is “begotten” of God. What kind of “thing” does that make Jesus? And how many of that particular thing is there? (Answers:  God, and ONE)

This verse is a clear indication of the deity of Jesus, one of the three persons that make up our great God.

What understanding does this nugget of truth from Scripture leave us with? Quite simply — however inadequately expressed by words — God Himself, the one true GOD that was and is and always will be, valued human beings enough to die in the person of His son so that we could live. Forever.

So, yeah, human beings are important to Jesus.

And think about this:  Human beings, whether they believe Christianity is true or not, are all hard-wired with the traits that come from bearing some image of their maker — an understanding of absolute rights and wrongs, an appreciation for beauty, a dire need for purpose, and a gut-level disturbance upon witnessing obvious injustices involving other human beings.

I believe it is that disturbance that makes an issue like abortion — an injustice of the worst kind involving innocent, valuable human beings — “taboo.” It’s the reason the word itself stirs up "defensive" emotions on either side of the issue. (Note: This raises the question, "What are you defending?" In light of what's been presented, it's either innocent human life or the right to choose to take a life — to honor God or to play god.) It’s the reason pro-abortion advocates dislike images depicting abortion as much as pro-life advocates do. It’s precisely the reason Christ-followers should be disturbed enough to stand in defense of human beings who, in the case of abortion, cannot fight for themselves.

That knowledge — both of human value and of who Christ is and what He has done for me, the human beings I’m fighting to defend, and all of those around me willing to recognize and trust Him — is what kept me talking in spite of the silence. 

Thursday, September 10, 2009

An Observation About Obama’s Health Care Speech [Josh Brahm]

I know everyone is talking about President Obama’s speech last night, and several organizations have done a wonderful job debunking some of the things he said. In particular, they’ve cleared up the recycled myth that abortion will not be covered under the current plan. We’ve already busted that myth on this blog.

I wanted to make an observation from last night that I haven’t really heard anyone bring up yet. President Obama has started a pattern of dismissing (and occasionally attacking) his opponents, instead of refuting their arguments. He listed several concerns last night that citizens have raised about abortion and “death panels”, among other things, and as he responded to most of those concerns, he simply dismissed them. “That’s a lie,” he would say, and most of the Democrats in the room would stand and applaud.

He never said, “You know, some well-meaning people have misunderstood or misread the bill, and think that abortion would be covered under the new plan. Actually, that view is mistaken because we are not going to include abortion under ‘family planning services’ or ‘reproductive health.’” THAT would have gotten my attention, because he would have been refuting our argument. It would have given us something to research so that we could double check the accuracy of our views, which is a good thing, because sometimes we’re right, and sometimes we’re wrong.

But, he didn’t do that. He just called us “liars,” and declared to the country that we are using dishonest “scare tactics” for political gain.

That’s not good enough. Any person of good will – but ESPECIALLY the President of the United States – should look honestly at the facts behind any claims, and then either refute them or concede the point.

I’m frustrated that President Obama continues to mislead, (whether intentionally or unintentionally,) on abortion in health care reform, but it means we just need to keep educating about it. It’s amazing to me that Obama still insists abortion won’t be covered, especially when even FactCheck and the Associated Press has brought clarity to those issues.

I want to add one more thing. Pro-lifers have good reason to feel passionately about this debate and while we should not give up. However, we should also maintain composure and treat the other side, especially our Commander-in-Chief, with respect. I believe Congressman Joe Wilson was way out of line in shouting at Obama during his speech. There is a certain protocol to that kind of presidential appearance, and heckling isn’t a part of it. This wasn’t a “Questions to the Prime Minister” convention where you see similar debates as you saw in House of Parliament meetings in “Amazing Grace.” This was a presidential address.

I’ve been equally ashamed of the way some people have treated their congressmen and women at town hall meetings. I remember one instance where Sean Hannity asked a particularly loud conservative woman who shouted at Sen. Arlen Specter at a town hall what she thought about Specter’s answer to her rant. Her response? “Honestly you know after I asked the question I was so, just, I don’t know, I didn’t hear half of what he said to be honest with you.”

Wonderful. So we shout at our congressmen on TV, but don’t even listen to their response, and then brag about it on Fox News! And we wonder why the other side thinks we’re “radicals…”

We should stand up for the truth, debunking when anybody, even the President, makes a mistaken claim about health care reform. But we should do it with respect and integrity. We shouldn’t make it so easy for the other side to simply dismiss us as crazy people. Instead, we should force them to examine our arguments, so they can decide for themselves.

I chuckled to myself when Obama said that he would call out people that made false claims about health care. In a statement after last night’s speech, Obama added, "I do think that, as I said last night, we have to get to the point where we can have a conversation about big, important issues that matter to the American people without vitriol, without name-calling, without the assumption of the worst of other people's motives."

Perhaps President Obama should listen to his own advice, and stop assuming the worst about the good citizens of this country who are legitimately concerned that the current health care reform bill will increase the national abortion rate. I don’t know about you, but that’s change I can believe in.

Busting Myths About Abortion & Health Care Reform – Part 2 [Josh]

Myth: President Obama backed off of his position on including abortion in the health care reform in his 7/21/09 interview with Katie Couric.

Fact: Read the quote carefully:

“I’m pro-choice, but I think we also have the tradition in this town, historically, of not financing abortions as part of government-funded health care. My main focus is making sure that people have options of high quality care at the lowest possible price.”

As National Right to Life’s Douglas Johnson pointed out in a recent conference call, Obama wasn’t backing off from abortion. He simply recognized that we haven’t traditionally financed abortion at the government level! There have been exceptions to this rule, but most state Medicaid programs only cover abortions for rape, incest or life of the mother exceptions, under the Hyde Amendment. (The NRLC conference call is not online yet, but will be soon at

It’s clever word play, and it was enough to fool many media outlets. (or they were just covering for their boyfriend again.) Either way, it’s not enough to fool us. I have no reason to think his views on abortion and health care have changed since he spoke at Planned Parenthood’s event two years ago.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Practical Apologetics: Doing Our Best versus Getting the Last Word [Dan]

Dan Hannon has an MA in Christian apologetics from Biola University and is on staff at the Pennsylvania State University Center for Molecular Toxicology and Carcinogenesis. I found his thoughts below helpful after a conversation on abortion went south on me. --SK

I recently had an opportunity to talk with a co-worker and present to him—at least in part—a case for the pro-life position. I say in part because we really couldn’t get past the science part of the discussion and into the philosophical reasons why we shouldn’t unjustly take the life of an unborn child. This was the second time we had discussed abortion.

In a previous conversation, my pro-choice colleague had focused more on the degree of dependency defense, and I had been unable to adequately respond to his challenges. Some time after that, I had heard Scott present the case for life through a series of podcasts, and I felt much better equipped to answer my co-worker’s arguments. And since he is very open to discussions and debate over sensitive issues such as politics, abortion, and euthanasia, I thought I’d have another go at him.

Unfortunately—and for no weakness in the pro-life position itself—the second conversation didn’t go as well as I’d hoped either. But this time, it wasn’t because I was unprepared. It was because we could not agree on the facts in question. This time, the debate had shifted, and his objection was that he didn’t consider the unborn to be human.

“If it’s not human, what is it?” I asked, shifting the burden of proof back to my office mate. He countered that it was not a human being, or at least he didn’t consider it one until the point of implantation. I pressed him on the point that implantation has no greater significance in declaring the unborn human than any other point in the pregnancy. Moreover, I cited that the science of embryology declares the unborn to be human from conception. “So you are willing to reject the established view of embryology on this point?” I asked. “Yes,” he said.

We had further discussion including whether the embryo is “living,” but at this point you can see where the conversation was going—nowhere, since we couldn’t agree on the facts—and what I was up against. I can’t say this turn in the discussion was entirely unexpected, since in previous talks it became evident to me that my counterpart was a relativist. He freely admits that the point where he thinks abortions should be illicit—he actually has one—is arbitrary and is his personal preference. He also related that he cannot decide why he doesn’t have a problem with early-term abortions—whether he thinks the unborn are not human or whether he has no problem with aborting a human being.

Needless to say, I came away almost as disappointed with this conversation as I had the previous one, though it was a valuable learning experience. We can have the case for life down cold—not that I myself have it mastered—but come away from a discussion having made what seems to be no discernible progress with a person. In cases like my co-worker, relativism, apathy, and emotional/personal barriers seem to trump rationality. Though it can be discouraging, sometimes we have to be satisfied with the job we have done even if it appears to be a fruitless effort; we present the most thoroughgoing case that we can, and we must be satisfied knowing we have done our best.


Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Busting Myths About Abortion & Health Care Reform – Part 1 [Josh]

I’ve been watching a lot of Mythbusters episodes lately. I love this show, because it’s entertaining, I’ve already heard a lot of the myths they feature, and most importantly, I want to know the facts at the end. So today I get to play Adam Savage for a day and bust some myths about abortion and health care reform. After spending hours and hours of dedicated research looking at what has been said by many pro-life and pro-abortion-choice organizations, as well as more independent groups like FactCheck and Politifact, I’ve found a few myths commonly heard in this debate to bust.

Myth: Abortion won’t be included in the health care reform program since the word “abortion” isn’t in the bill.

Fact: That statement is completely disingenuous. As Elizabeth rightly pointed out in her first post, just because the word “abortion” isn’t in the bill doesn’t mean it would be excluded from being covered. Based on legal history and the understanding of how abortion advocates define “reproductive health,” we can be pretty sure that if “reproductive health” is covered, abortion will be too.

It’s very interesting to me when Planned Parenthood’s website makes a statement like this:

“Nothing in any of the current health care reform bills mandates abortion coverage — or any other type of health care procedure,”

when just 5 paragraphs earlier on the same webpage, PP says,

“All versions of the health care reform bill would expand coverage, protect women's access to reproductive health care, and allow women to continue to see the health care providers they know and trust (like Planned Parenthood).”

Planned Parenthood isn’t the only abortion advocacy group that seems to agree that abortion would be covered under the health care reform bill:

President Barack Obama: "Well, look, in my mind reproductive care is essential care, basic care so it is at the center, the heart of the plan that I propose...insurers are going to have to abide by the same rules in terms of providing comprehensive care, including reproductive care...that's going to be absolutely vital." Source: During Q&A session at a Planned Parenthood Action Fund Event on July 17, 2007.)
Secretary of State Hillary Clinton: "Reproductive health includes access to abortion...We are now an Administration that will protect the rights of women, including their rights to reproductive health care." Source: In front of House Foreign Affairs Committee on April 22, 2009. YouTube video here.
National Abortion Federation: "NAF supports health care reform as a way to increase access to comprehensive reproductive health care, including abortion care, for all women." Source: NAF website.
Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice: "Let there be no mistake, basic healthcare includes abortion services."
Source: An email action alert regarding health care reform issued July 1, 2009 from RCRC President Reverend Carlton W. Veazey.
NARAL (National Abortion Rights Action League): "(I)f, indeed, we can advance a panel or commission, then I am very optimistic about reproductive health care being part of this entire package." Source: NARAL President Nancy Keenan spoke to the American Prospect about the health care debate.
RHRealityCheck: "health reform is the issue to insist upon for Obama for his first term--he needs the victory. ‘He needs us. Public option is key, and using "medical standard of care" in language instead of listing reproductive services that will siphon off votes." (sic) Source: A RHRealityCheck blogger wrote this about what Wendy Chavkin, former Board chair of Physicians for Reproductive Choice and Health said in a forum.

Of course, if that’s not enough evidence, than check out FactCheck, TIME magazine, Obama supporter Jim Wallis and the Associated Press confirming that the current health care reform bills include abortion coverage.

Reproductive health care, in the minds (and pens) of the current administration includes abortion access.

Welcome Josh Brahm [Jay]

The LTI Blog would like to welcome Josh Brahm to the Life Training Institute blog roll. Josh currently serves as the Director of Education and Public Relations for Right to Life of Central California and he formerly served as Education Director of Georgia Right to Life. Facebook, YouTube, & Twitter users will probably be familiar with his Life Report show where they tackle a variety of subjects concerning the sanctity of human life in an effort to equip their audience to engage those with opposing views in a productive dialogue. Josh will provide guest articles specifically for the LTI Blog as his schedule allows and we are thrilled to have him contributing.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

LTI Podcast #18 - Obamacare and Abortion [Serge]

On this podcast the LTI team address Obamacare and abortion. We have a roundtable discussion with Rich, Scott, Jay, and Bob regarding federal funding for abortion under the proposed health care reform legislation. Will this bill change the federal government's longstanding doctrine of not providing federal money for most abortions? Or can we trust Obama when he states it will not?

Also, Rich continues his series regarding the medical literature when he addresses a recent article in the Journal Contraception regarding emergency contraception. Now that the experts agree that it is not effective in reducing unplanned pregnancy, should practitioners "give up" on the medication? The answer may surprise you. or subscribe with Itunes at (click the advanced tab, click "subscribe to podcast", and then copy and paste the bolded url into the field).