Archive for April, 2012
The University of Virginia (UVa) is under fire for killing some of them.
According to the Human Rights and Scientific Honesty Initiative (HRSHI), 309 of them were killed by UVa’s own “Health” System in 1991. They were aborted, as were 264 the following year (source).
Denied their human rights, there were no first words, first kisses, or first loves for them. There will be no walk down the lawn for them at graduation either.
Despite their best effort to hide the fact, UVa routinely performs abortions and lies about it. When not spreading falsehoods, UVa is simply silent about the truth and hopes people won’t ask.
But thanks to our friends Sean Cannan, Kelsey Hazzard, and others at HRSHI, UVa is being exposed and called to account (letter of February 2011). Most recent letter here. Excellent radio interview here.
From HRSHI’s most recent letter to UVa, here’s my favorite quotation:
You have yourself attempted to justify these killings by citing the “legal framework” of United States Supreme Court precedent of Roe vs. Wade (1973), and the “compelling personal factors” of the mother only. You completely left out the compelling personal factors of fathers and their children alike. We feel compelled ourselves to remind you that slavery was once an institution that was acceptable within the legal framework as decided by the United States Supreme Court and state laws also, that this institution was also quite popular at UVA, and that slave traders and owners had compelling personal and financial reasons for trading or owning slaves. Throughout history, many such atrocities have been justified by those pretending that the humanity of their victims can simply be removed by decree. We are here to remind you that this is neither a scientifically accurate position, nor a sustainable medical opinion for a President of the public University of Virginia in 2012.
Help us show UVa what they are really doing. Help us go to UVa and every other college campus to expose their abortion business.
CBR Executive Director Gregg Cunningham was interviewed on a BBC Radio 4 news broadcast earlier today. The interviewer was obviously an arrogant, hard-core leftist idealogue. To hear the interview, click here.
Gregg and CBR UK Director Andy Stephenson had been scheduled to appear on a BBC Radio 5 Live broadcast 2 hours later to debate British Pregnancy Advisory Service (BPAS) abortion providers. Regarding the second interview, Gregg wrote supporters
… they (BPAS) apparently cancelled after listening to our first interview and the BBC pulled the plug on our second appearance. Cowards. This is exactly why we must make our case in the public square. The press and our opponents are determined to suppress our message. The newspapers write about us only when they can quote the abortion industry telling scurrilous lies about us and the radio broadcasters interview us only until they discover that they can’t embarrass us on the air.
This just in from SFLA:
With many pro-abortion speakers presenting at commencement ceremonies across the nation, Students for Life of America (SFLA) is proud to offer a respectful way for graduating pro-life students to Stand for Life with the first-ever Pro-Life Grad Cap Stickers.
The stickers simply read “Pro-Life” and are meant to go on the top of the graduation cap. There is a hole cut through the center of the sticker to allow the tassel on the cap to pop through, and they are die cut to look great on any color cap!
These stickers offer a way for graduates to respectfully show their pro-life values during their graduation. It’s a means to grab the attention of the university, fellow graduates, parents, and media; especially at ceremonies featuring a pro-abortion speaker.
Buy a grad cap sticker for $2 by clicking here!
Earlier this month, 4 CBR staff and volunteers spent the day at the University of Tennessee at Knoxville (UTK) with hand-held “Choice” signs. “Choice” signs are 3-ft-by-4-ft, light-weight, hand-held signs that depict aborted babies in the first trimester. These signs simply show students what “choice” really is.
CBR volunteer Debbie Picarello spoke with a male graduate student who said his mother had 2 abortions before giving birth to him and his living brother. He learned of her abortions a year ago. He believes much of the dysfunctionality his mother has displayed toward him and his brother was a product of her abortion-wounded heart.
His own father is also the father of one of the aborted children, and their marriage is not a good one. One of the symptoms of an abortion-wounded heart is relational difficulties.
A pro-life male student wondered how effective graphic pictures are. Debbie explained the historical significance of images, that reformers have been effective when they used images to expose the humanity of the victims and the inhumanity of the crime. Debbie doesn’t ‘like’ these pictures, but she could talk about how effective they have been. He seemed more open to the need for the pictures.
A male student said, “Eww, a hand!” as he walked by. Several students, both male and female proclaimed loudly, “Those are disgusting!” Yes, that’s the point.
We got lots of encouragement. Quite a few students, both male and female, either thanked us for being out there, or gave a thumbs up as they were walking by. Many students took our Unmasking Choice handout. Many others gazed intently at the pictures as they walked by. Mission accomplished!
Most universities have spaces where citizens can hold signs and speak with students, even without an invitation. In this case, we were invited by the UTK Collegians for Life. The president of Collegians for Life is Clint Kennamer. Clint became pro-life when he first saw abortion at our GAP display at the University of North Florida (UNF) in 2009. Clint was at UNF because he came with his wife Kate, who was a CBR staff member at the time. Now, Clint leads pro-life activism at UTK and Kate still volunteers for CBR projects! Yes, the pictures work!
Folks, if you want to have a GREAT day, get a couple of your own Choice signs and visit your local college. You will be teaching powerful truth that people are desperate to know.
The Spring 2012 I-95 Genocide Awareness Project (GAP) tour made its final stop last week at the University of Massachusetts (UMass). We are indebted to Bill Cotter of Operation Rescue: Boston for filing this report:
Students wandered by all day, with a dozen to as many as fifty students gathered at any one time to look at the posters and debate with the GAP staffers.
Reason was in recession while conditioned reflex responses abounded: “What about rape?” “What if the woman lives in poverty?” “It’s not genocide!” “Perverts!”
Sometimes it bordered on the hysterical. “It’s not 24 weeks!” shrieked one woman in response to a poster of a 24-week abortion. Meaning what? That an older (or younger) abortion would not be OK? Why? Why not?
While the insults and hyper-emotional defenses of abortion suggest a society on its last legs (which may be true) they may also be symptoms of people being redeemed. The strength of the GAP exhibit can be summed up in one word: truth. And truth is more than facts. Truth is a Person … a victorious, conquered-sin-and-death Person … who has been known to incite shrieks and hysteria in people afflicted with Darkness.
When the exhibit is long gone from the campus, and emotions have quieted, the images will remain burned into the minds of observers, relentlessly bringing to light the self-evident truth about our national sin. The blessed ones will yield to that truth. The rest will remain at war.
CBR United Kingdom Director Andy Stephenson was on The Big Question, a program on BBC One, the flagship TV station of the British Broadcasting Company (BBC). The Big Question on this day was, “Should abortion be a private matter?”
Andy’s answer was “Yes … if …” Great sound bites you can use:
- There should be unrestricted access to abortion, if the unborn child is not a human being.
- All we’re doing is showing people what they do.
- Why would the truth be intimidating?
- If abortion is such a good idea, why to pictures of it make people so angry?
- It is not a controversial issue that life begins at conception. If they want to get rid of us, we will leave tomorrow if they can prove to us, with science, that the preborn child being killed is not a human being.
- On filming: That’s why we film [our own work]; we knew there would be false allegations. We knew we had to document our displays. We invite the police to attend every display we do.
Pro-life activists all over the planet are employing CBR-developed methods of legally educating the public about two key facts: (1) Who this the preborn? and (2) What does abortion do to him or her?
Check out Andy Stephenson on British TV, saying it like it outta to be said:
Responding to an article by Ms. Erin McCann that appeared in The Maine Campus earlier this week, I left the following comment:
Ms. McCann’s piece actually illustrates some of the very points we make with our GAP display.
But before getting into that, I should mention that, of course, abortion is not genocide … if. (Only two letters, but it’s a big word.)
If pre-born children are not living human beings, then abortion does not kill humans and there is no relevant similarity between abortion and genocide. But if pre-born children are living human beings — science tells us they are both alive and human — then abortion kills 1.2 million humans every year in the U.S. If not genocide, what else would we call it?
But back to Ms. McCann and her penchant to demonstrate the very behaviors we cited in the GAP display. If you examine historical episodes of genocide, you find that the perpetrators always frame their arguments in the language of choice. Stephen Douglas, when he debated Abraham Lincoln in 1858, said that the Southern states should have the right to choose whether to be slave states or free states. Individual slave owners were simply exercising their choice on whether to own slaves or not. You can almost them say, “You don’t like slavery, then don’t own one!” For those who perpetrated the Holocaust in Europe, they were simply exercising their choice to have a racially pure state.
Ms. McCann spoke of our Maine Director Leslie Sneddon as a “token.” She should realize that ad hominem attacks and name-calling are no substitutes for reasoned arguments. Yes, our staff is about half men and half women. It is unclear to me how the genders of various CBR staff and volunteers have anything at all to do with the important questions of (a) whether it is ever morally acceptable to kill human beings without justification and (b) what criteria will be used to decide which humans may be killed and which humans must be protected.
Ms. McCann is correct about one thing. She notes that, “Isn’t it interesting how the male can do whatever he pleases, but the female must live with the consequence? Only the female is left with the decision between ‘right and wrong.’” Sadly true. Reminds me of something Mark Crutcher often says, “Abortion is something done by men, to women, for the benefit of men.” So many males — I cannot use the term “men” to describe such people — want sex without responsibility. They use every trick in the book to get it. But when cancer-causing birth-control hormones are passed out, who gets to ingest those? When the worst symptoms of STDs show up, who bears that burden? When somebody gets pregnant, which one is it? It’s always the woman.
His response is often to threaten abandonment. It can be an overt threat or a thinly veiled one, such as, “It’s not my decision, it’s yours … Whatever you want to do.” In other words, “The decision … and especially the guilt that goes with it … are yours alone; I’m going to go hide somewhere until you get it taken care of.” (With testicles like that, you wonder how he could even make sperm.)
Feminist Susan B. Anthony had some words for him: “Guilty? Yes. No matter what the motive, love of ease, or a desire to save from suffering the unborn innocent, the woman is awfully guilty who commits the deed. It will burden her conscience in life, it will burden her soul in death; But oh, thrice guilty is he who drove her to the desperation which impelled her to the crime!”
As it turns out, “free” sex ain’t so free, and it’s the woman who most often has to pay the price. The sad irony is that every bit of it flies under the banner of “women’s rights.”
Our I-95 GAP tour continues this week in Connecticut and Massachusetts. On Monday and Tuesday, we were at the University of Connecticut (UConn). Kudos to CBR Maine Director Leslie Sneddon for setting up this phase of the tour and CBR Midwest Director Darius Hardwick for bringing the display and several volunteers.
Day 1 was uneventful, except for the normal pro-abortion angst that we were exposing their deeds.
But on Day 2, several protesters showed up and attempted to stop our team from setting up. The UConn Administration refused to give in to thuggish behavior and required the protesters to move aside so that our space reservation could be honored. All moved to adjacent space except two, and those two were arrested. Story here and here and here (good video) and here and here and here.
Now, on to the University of Massachusetts!
Lots of media coverage at the University of Maine (UM) and the University of Southern Maine (USM).
The Maine Campus:
- SWA addresses GSS to voice concern over planned protest
- Video: Anti-abortion group Genocide Awareness Project riles emotions at UMaine
- Editorial: GAP gore fest brings out worst for all involved
- Op-ed: GAP’s avowal of abortion as genocide utterly unfounded
- You hurt your own cause: An open letter to the Genocide Awareness Project
- Columnist: GAP’s hyperbolic crusade against women warrants only contempt
Bangor Daily News:
WLBZ TV (Bangor)
USM Free Press
- Anti-abortion group coming to Portland campus Wednesday and Thursday
- Anti-abortion display raises hackles on campus
- Kelley: Anti-abortion agitators ignite a different debate
WCSH TV (Portland)
- Abortion protest stirs strong emotions at USM (very well-done)
WGME TV (Portland)
Portland Daily Sun
In the online comments on the Bangor Daily News website (on the story about our GAP at the U of Maine), I was conversing with ChuckGG about the project and related issues. Suddenly and with no warning, the Bangor Daily News closed the comments. So, I’m stuck here with my reply to ChuckGG’s most recent comment, and only my own website to post it. ChuckGG, if you are still out there in cyberspace, this post is for you:
ChuckGG, thank you for your thoughtful reply. I appreciate the opportunity for rational discussion.
I need to make several points, and I guess the best way is to list them, one by one.
Please don’t think I oppose sex education in schools. There is no virtue in ignorance. But as a parent and a citizen, I am concerned about who will deliver the educational programs and what the message will be.
I absolutely believe that sex education programs should emphasize and encourage abstinence, even though we know some will have sex anyway. The NCHS reports that 68% of boys and 67% of girls between the ages of 15 and 17 have never had sexual intercourse. That number is lower than I’d like to see, but I would hardly call it “rare.” I can’t really comment on the difference between your high school and the neighboring schools. That’s anecdotal. A friend of mine introduced “Sex Respect” in Rhea County, Tennessee a few years ago and the result was a 75% decrease in teen pregnancies.
Yes, the proper use of birth control techniques will reduce the numbers of pregnancies. The effect of sex education is a bit harder to measure. If your sex education program has the tendency of dramatically increasing sexual activity, then you might well see an overall increase in pregnancies, even as the use of birth control increases. As evidence for the existence of unintended consequences, I offered a 2011 paper by Peter Arcidiancono (Duke University), Ahmed Khwaja (Yale University) and Lijing Ouyang (Centers for Disease Control). They concluded, “Programs that increase access to contraception are found to decrease teen pregnancies in the short run but increase teen pregnancies in the long run.” (Source)
I also offered the experience of Carol Everett, who was allowed to deliver sex education in several Texas schools. The result of her “education” program was to increase pregnancy rates by 50%. A key factor was increasing the frequency at which the children were having sex. She was delivering her “education” program in full view and with the approval of school authorities who, no doubt, were convinced that her programs were decreasing teen pregnancies.
Sex education in schools? Yes. Hand out contraceptives in school? No. Invite the abortion industry (e.g., Planned Parenthood) into the schools to deliver sex education programs? No way!
We got onto this topic because so many commenters suggest that if we want to get rid of abortions, just hand out free birth control and preach their use. That way (they say) we would never have to talk about abortion again. I must reject that suggestion for a number of reasons.
- It won’t eliminate abortions. The Alan Guttmacher Institute reports that 54% of abortions are performed on women who were using birth control in the month they got pregnant. It might reduce abortion some, but it won’t eliminate it. And our goal is not to reduce the numbers of abortions, our goal is to get rid of the whole bloody mess, because every abortion takes the life of a living human being.
- I can never encourage somebody to do something that I know to be dangerous, even potentially deadly. If I encourage people to use condoms and leave them with the belief that by using the condom, they can safely have sex with the next guy that comes along, and to do it repeatedly, then I have encouraged them to engage in reckless behaviors that will possibly result in a deadly STD. Condoms fail to prevent pregnancy at an annual cummulative rate of 2% to %15%. The failure to protect against STDs has to be even higher. Condoms provide almost no protection against the spread of HPV, the virus that causes cervical cancer.
I note that you and I are about the same age. Remember when we were growing up, there were really only two STDs that anybody worried about. It had been that way for centuries. Now, I’m told there are more than 25. The Associated Press reports that 1 in 4 teen girls has at least one. What changed? More contraceptives? More Planned-Parenthood-style sex education? More reckless and deadly behaviors? Yes, yes, and yes. Of course I don’t oppose truthful education, but I do oppose encouraging teenagers to engage in reckless and self-destructive behaviors.
Maggie Egger of Spiders for Life and Nicole Cooley of CBR organized a Choice Chain at the University of Richmond (UR) on Monday.
The abortion pictures are what the military calls a force multiplier. They allow us to take a small amount of resources and create a huge effect.
One student tried the “famous violinist” argument on Nicole. Of course, we are all veterans of the Pro Life Training Academy, so we know exactly how to answer that question. Nicole pointed out that the famous violinist is not analogous to the preborn child because
- The violinist is not the offspring of the host.
- We all recognize that we have responsibilities to our own children that are greater than our responsibilities to a random stranger. For example, we are required by law to support and care for our born children.
That seemed to be enough; the young man just turned and walked away. Nicole could have added:
- The child is not an intruder. He is exactly where he naturally belongs.
- Withholding support is not the same as dismembering, poisoning, and/or crushing.
- Except in the case of rape, the host actively participated in the act that created the pregnancy.
This being a private school, the normal First Amendment protections did not apply. For example, CBR staff and volunteers were not permitted to speak to a UR student unless first approached. However, when the UR students began chalking messages on the plaza (a common activity on college campuses), CBR volunteer Jonathan Darnel got his own chalk and started to respond. It was just like our Free Speech Board. The pro-aborts complained, but UR administrators allowed him to continue.
The Good: George Mason University (GMU) earns an A for handling a number of competing interests in conjunction with our visit earlier this week. The Bad: We are not happy that it has taken 8 months for Students for Life to become registered as a student group, so that they can enjoy the same rights as other groups on campus. The Ugly: Because the Students for Life group wasn’t allowed to even discuss event planning for the past 8 months, a conflict was created that could have been avoided.
Organizing a Student Group. At GMU, recognized student groups can do things that individuals and non-recognized groups can’t do, such as reserve space, host events, etc. It’s a big deal. Recognition requires that the students find a faculty sponsor (i.e., a university employee) to sanction their club. If you can’t find a sponsor from the eligible pool of university employees, you have fewer rights (unless you are willing to challenge the system in court, which we would do if we had to).
Finding a leftist professor is easy. Although liberals comprise only 20% of the American population, they are 72% of all college professors. Finding a conservative professor is much harder, especially one that has tenure and isn’t job-scared.
This whole system can create a burden that would never survive a judicial review. How could any attorney argue that the university doesn’t discriminate against conservative students, it’s the university employees (i.e., the faculty) who discriminate, and the university can’t be held accountable for the actions of their employees! It would never fly, but how many students really understand how to fight back?
Because the Students for Life couldn’t get registered, they couldn’t even talk to event planning staff about planning GAP, reserving space, or anything else. Finally, as the end of the school year approached, we were out of options. We chose a date and notified GMU that we had been invited by students, registered or not, and we were determined to accept.
Space assigned. After receiving our letter, GMU assigned us a location on Central Johnson Plaza to erect the GAP display. The Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgendered and Questioning (LGBTQ) group had reserved East Johnson Plaza (a better space) for Pride Week 2012 activities, which is fine. It is common for concurrent activities to share the East Plaza, but the LGBTQ group had reserved the entire East Plaza for their exclusive use, so we were offered the next-most desirable space, which was still visible to most passersby. (See map below.)
However, the LGBTQ group was none too happy that the pro-life students had been granted space within view of East Plaza. They needed only part of East Plaza for their activity, but they wanted everything in sight. We absolutely respect the right of any student group to reserve space for whatever activity they would like to hold, but one group of students shouldn’t be able to reserve their own space and also reserve away everybody else’s rights.
First Amendment good for all. Meanwhile, the Patriots for Choice student group, who came out to protest GAP, were initially assigned space way down on the West Plaza, which might as well have been on another planet. We lobbied for them to be granted better space. For the First Amendment to mean anything, it belongs to all of us, so we must defend that freedom for even our fiercest foe. Eventually, GMU officials allowed the pro-abortion students to move up to a better location. In fact, they occupied space on the East Plaza, previously reserved by the LGBTQ group. Seems they are allied in opposition to the pro-lifers. We welcomed that move.
Sound. On Day 2, we would like to have set up our sound equipment for Open Mike. This GAP kiosk allows anybody to pose a question to CBR and hear the answer. Speakers amplify the sound for any crowd that might gather. Unfortunately, amplified sound tends to disregard space reservations and just fly all over the place. Being good citizens, we didn’t believe we could broadcast sound that might interfere with the prior reservation held by the LGBTQ group, so we decided not to do it. We hope that we can return for an Open Mike session during a future Choice Chain event.
GAP continues this week in the key state of Maine. On April 9-10, GAP is at the University of Maine at Orono (UMO). Coverage by UMO’s student newspaper, The Maine Campus. Quote from the article:
Amanda Rivers, a second-year social work major, walked out of a morning class and saw the display.
“I’m so glad that they’re here,” she said.
Rivers said she always knew she was pro-life but didn’t understand the extent of her commitment to that mindset until she saw the photos, which she described as “graphic.”
“I came out of class and just did the walk around and honestly started crying,” she said.
Her views on abortion were cemented after she spoke with a GAP protester, and she said she doesn’t believe there are any circumstances in which abortion is a moral decision. She now describes herself as firmly anti-abortion.
“I am now. One-hundred percent,” she said.
She said she understands why the group of students gathered around Hardwick to argue with him. …
Full article here. Please add your comments online!
Lots of media coverage at George Mason University (GMU) and Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU).
The Washington Post:
The Broadside at George Mason University:
The Commonwealth Times at Virginia Commonwealth University:
- Graphic images draw criticism from students
- Anti-abortion protesters display, emanate negative values
WTVR-TV in Richmond:
We’re way behind in reporting on our continuing I-95 GAP tour! It will take weeks to catch up!
The second day of GAP at George Mason University (GMU) was a huge success. One GMU administrator told us that he had never seen so many people engaged in serious discussion as he observed on the Johnson Plaza in front of our GAP display.
Lily Bolourian, president of Patriots for Choice, was quoted in the paper as saying, “We believe that the whole notion that abortion is genocide is absolutely ludicrous.” She is, of course, correct … if the preborn child is anything less than a living human being. The problem for her side is that medical school textbooks, embryologists, and pro-choice philosophers all agree that the preborn child is a living human being. That means we are killing 1.2 million human beings every year. What else would she call it?
I had a productive (I think) discussion with Ms. Bolourian. We actually share a lot in common. We both want to live justly with our fellow man. She is just confused about who her fellow man is. We shouldn’t be too harsh in our judgment on that point; George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, and even George Mason himself were similarly confused. They excluded human beings on the basis of skin color. Because if it, millions of people had their lives stolen from them.
When Ms. Bolourian brought up the breast cancer link, I was able to show her the latest compilation of studies that address the link. It is true that some studies have failed to show this link to be statistically significant, but because of my background in experimental statistics (PhD minor), I could explain the difference between (a) failing to show that two populations are different at a statistically significant level and (b) actually proving that they are the same. I was able to explain that if abortion increases a woman’s chance of breast cancer from an ambient level of 10% to an after-abortion level of 13%, we can estimate that 300,000 women have died from abortion-induced breast cancer since Roe v. Wade (source).
Ms. Bolourian thanked me for the kind of dialogue we were able to have. She thought respectful dialogue to be a rare commodity between our two sides. She said that’s why they encouraged their members not to engage with us. I said, “You mean you told your people not to come and talk to me?” She admitted that she had. I replied, “Looks like you broke your own rule!” We had to laugh as we parted ways.
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