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Posts Tagged ‘prolife’

Abortion on display at in DC metro area

Here’s a photo of Jonathan Darnel displaying one of CBR’s GAP signs in the DC metro area.  This was at the Ballston Metro stop.  Your gift of $200 will purchase another sign!

Jonathan Darnel at Ballston metro stop in DC area.

Jonathan Darnel at Ballston metro stop in DC area.

Reaching Christian students at James Madison University

Bubba Gene Garrett explains prenatal development to a student at James Madison University

Bubba Gene Garrett explains prenatal development to a student at James Madison University.

Where can Christians learn the message not to kill their own children?

Not at church, apparently.  That’s why 1 in 5 women who have abortions identify themselves as “born again” or “evangelical” Christians.

The secular campus is a great place to reach these good people with the truth that the pro-life church is covering up.  This was also true at James Madison University.

Joe had recently become a Christian, but had never considered abortion in any form or fashion.  He spoke with CBR GAPper Bubba Garrett.

As they looked over the pictures and discussed the implications of abortion in terms of the genocide comparison, his heart was deeply moved.  Bubba helped him to understand that authentic Christianity must include protecting the helpless from systematic slaughter (Proverbs 24:11-12).

Joe asked Bubba to pray with him that more Christians would get involved in stopping abortion.  Afterwards, he told him that his spiritual mentor was nearby and also needed to learn about abortion.  As a result both young men experienced a change of heart concerning the consequences of abortion and a newfound determination to do something about it.

“I never thought of them as siblings before.”

CBR Project Director Jane Bullington speaks to a student at UT Knoxville

CBR Project Director Jane Bullington speaks to a student at UT Knoxville.

I found out for sure what I had always known — my mom aborted 2 children before me.

CBR staffer Jane Bullington met a young man at the UT Knoxville GAP.  Steve had a cocky look on his face.  Jane asked him what he thought — it’s our standard way of breaking the ice.

Steve started out with all the same stuff we’ve heard before:  shock value, misused use of the term genocide, pictures don’t change minds, you are turning people away from your cause, etc., etc., etc.

But then they actually started talking and Steve began to verbalize some of the bad consequences of abortion, the damage to women, the effects on families, the mental stress on women, etc.  He got tears in his eyes.  He said, “In recent months, I have been drawn to everything I see or read about abortion.  I found out for sure what I had always known: my mom aborted 2 children before me.  She treated me … well … different.  She and my dad had troubles.  My home was tense.”

Jane asked him, “Do you have other siblings besides those 2 your mom aborted?”

Steve looked at her with surprise, “I never thought of them as my siblings, but they are.  Yes, I have an older brother.”

Later in the conversation, his position began to move, “I still think women should have a choice, but so many other people get hurt that I want them to know the truth, the truth about what they are doing, and the consequences they will endure, they and their families.  I guess education like yours would be good for women.”

Jane asked Steve if his mom would go to a post-abortion healing ministry like Deeper Still.   He chuckled and said, “Absolutely no.  She believes the ends justifies the means, and she wanted what she wanted.”

Jane suggested he might want to talk to someone else later on in his journey and told him that Deeper Still could be of help to him, as a son, too.

At the end of the conversation, Steve thanked Jane for her time and she gave him a hug — Jane is a mom and moms like that sort of thing.  Steve left, but as he walked away, his eyes never left the pictures.

GAP returns to U of Tennessee at Knoxville

Dialoge with pro-abortion student.  I got the shade; I was there first.

Dialogue with pro-abortion student. (I got the shade; I was there first.)

This is our 8th day of GAP in the last 3 weeks.  If you count our Pro Life Training Academy, travel, and prep work, it’s my 16th day of hard labor in 19 days.  By hard labor I mean up at 6:00 am and to bed at midnight or later on GAP days … with only slightly more sleep on the other days.  There would be 3 more days after this one.

But God is good.  He knew that we were all tired.  He didn’t test us.  After we got the exhibit set up, I propped myself up on a wall underneath a shade tree, right near the poll table.  They would have to come to me.

At the poll table, students answer the question, “Should abortion remain legal?”  A “no” response means pro-life; we sign them up for the Pro Life Collegians.  A “yes” response means pro-abortion; we initiate dialogue with the goal of helping them rethink their position.  For most of the day, I just quietly asked the “yes” responders, one at a time, “May I ask why you responded that way?”  If they answer, we’re off to the races.

For a nice change of pace, God didn’t send any combative people over to the table this day.  The combative types can offer awesome opportunities, especially if they draw a crowd.  But they are rarely thoughtful and it is hard work to be reasonable with somebody who is unreasonable.  I just wasn’t up to it.

So God sent to me (and all the rest of us) a steady stream of people who were willing to have civil discourse.  He also sent a number of pro-lifers who gave us encouragement.  It was very different from most GAPs, including most GAPs at UT.

Of course, a few passersby gave us the “flying buzzard” as they rushed on past, but the drive-by’s can be easily ignored.  We should aways remember that such people are often facing struggles that we probably can’t imagine.  We should also remember that God loves each and every one of them, too.  But God would have had a hard time loving them through us on this day.  The civil ones got all we had to give.

Shouldn’t Christians be taught God’s side?

Liberty students see abortion, many for the first time.

Liberty students see abortion, many for the first time.

We were disturbed but not particularly surprised at some of the reaction from Liberty University students when we took GAP there a few weeks back.  So many of them wanted to live within the fiction that since they are “pro-life,” whatever that means, that’s all they need to know.  Not trying to pick on Liberty here; Liberty is simply a microcosm of the modern American church.

A particularly disturbing comment from “LU” (his pen-name) appeard on FAB.  It read, in part, as follows:

… Abortion has been in the light of public media for years now and I would say that most adults do know what takes place.  You are not showing us anything we haven’t seen or heard before, you only anger the students of this campus with your lack of tact.  Also, it pains me to see the young children with your group being involved in this protest.  These children are way too young to be seeing these images in the first place and are only being brought up into a lifestyle of intolerance; not a true life of love as we as Christians are called to live.  Children need to be taught both sides of an issue and allowed to develop their own opinions once they are capable to do so. … We need to be able to decide for ourselves through skeptical study of the Bible and beliefs we have been taught.  It is sad to see how Christianity is being portrayed to unbelievers through your work.  I pray for you, your family, and fellow campaigners.

Note how illogical his reasoning is:

  1. We shouldn’t show the pictures because everbody has seen them when they were younger.
  2. Younger people shouldn’t see the picture’s, either.
  3. Showing the pictures is intolerant.
  4. Leaving Christians ignorant allows them to figure out for themselves what side they are on.

But wait a minute, if we all followed his advice, none of his classmates would have ever seen the pictures before and the first premise would be invalidated.

I responded as follows:

LU Student, you are mistaken on many points.  Please read my Open Letter to Liberty University, which you can link to from our website, http://www.ProLifeOnCampus.com.

You said that “abortion has been in the light of public media for years now.”  Really? I watch public media all the time.  I see unborn children dehumanized as mere blobs of tissue, masses of cells, products of conception, parasites, etc.  I see abortion euphemized as a reproductive “choice.”  A mere picture would dispel those myths, but the myths are cherished by those in power, so the pictures are suppressed.  With all the talk about “choice,” I’ve almost never seen any attention paid to what is actually being chosen.  The rare exception is when we come into town and some of the local media outlets actually show the pictures we have put on display.  Without any presentation of the reality of abortion in the media, the education system, and even the Church, most people have no idea who the preborn baby is and what abortion does to her.

You say the “shock factor” is not as effective as we would like to believe.  Your argument is not with us.  Your argument is with the countless women and men who have let us know that our pictures changed their minds.  In many cases, they tell us that our pictures saved their own children from destruction at the hands of the abortionist.  You can see many testimonials on http://www.AbortionNo.org and on http://www.ProLifeOnCampus.com.

You say that children should never be shown these pictures, but that you and everybody else at Liberty has already seen them?  How can that be?  If only a few kooks like us are letting our children see the pictures, how can it be that by the time they are 18, everybody has seen them?  We have encountered many, many students who tell us that they grew up in “pro-life” churches, had never seen abortion pictures, had come to believe abortion should be a choice, and changed their minds only after seeing our pictures.

You say that “Children need to be taught both sides of an issue and allowed to develop their own opinions once they are capable to do so.”  Really?  Whatever happened to God’s side?  Whatever happened to “Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it” (Proverbs 22:6)?  We are commanded not to kill their own children (Mark 10:19).  We are commanded to protect and defend the defenseless (Proverbs 24:11-12).  And finally, we are commanded to teach other believers to do the same (Matthew 28:20).  These commands are not optional.

When Christians see the horror of abortion, they are more likely to obey God’s command not to kill their own children (Mark 10:19).  Furthermore, they are more motivated to protect and defend the defenseless (Proverbs 24:11-12).  And finally, they more fully understand their duty as Christian leaders to teach other believers to do the same (Matthew 28:20).

[Note: You can read the entire discussion stream here.]

Another baby saved by Truth Truck

RCC-Atlanta-1

After seeing the images on the truck, she said, "I knew I had to choose life for my child."

We hear from lots of supporters (including my own mom) who tell us, “I love your work on campus, but I’m not so sure about your truck!”

Well, Mom, this baby’s for you!

httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uKXbvfWIpOs

Abortion, Medical Honesty Battle Takes Shape at University of Virginia

The Human Rights and Scientific Honesty Initiative

The Human Rights and Scientific Honesty Initiative

A group of Virginia college students, banded together to form The Human Rights and Scientific Honesty Initiative asked me to pass this story along to you:

Abortion, Medical Honesty Battle Takes Shape at University of Virginia

A national treasure of a building, Thomas Jefferson’s Rotunda at the University of Virginia (UVA), has a leaking roof and crumbling columns.  The University and state government have begun the chess game over how much it will cost to repair, and who will be picking up the tab.  But right across the street in the UVA president’s office, they have much bigger worries about what they have been doing with state, federal, and student funds the last 20 years under the leadership of John Casteen .   New UVA President Theresa Sullivan has been handed a series of shocking allegations from our group, The Human Rights and Scientific Honesty Initiative.

Students for Life of America has already identified the University of Virginia as one of the institutions of higher learning that has been financing elective abortions with student health funds, and not even giving their students and their students’ parents the opportunity to opt out of that.  What most people at UVA and Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU) are totally unaware of is that these schools have both been secretly performing thousands of elective abortions right in their own teaching hospitals!  And, yes, these are both state taxpayer funded universities who also receive federal education grants to boot.

Elective abortions being performed secretly at taxpayer-funded universities are bad enough.  On top of that, UVA has been giving misleading information on a wide range of reproductive issues, neglecting the principle of informed consent.   Sadly, it seems one of America’s top universities allowed itself to be sucked into the Planned Parenthood template for misinforming women and keeping them in the dark about numerous threats to their health.  Somebody finally noticed.

The national pro life movement has been overlooking the universities for too long.  Sometimes we forget that it is not all about Planned Parenthood.  Pro-life activists have a lot to contend with in Charlottesville, a city of only 45,000 people that already has two other abortion facilities as it is, and a large pro-abortion cabal that includes City Council.  One of Live Action’s recent stings of Planned Parenthood aiding and abetting child sex trafficking took place at their Charlottesville area facility.  But right there, in such a hostile environment, we have a whole new front opening in the battle for human rights in America.  And what better place to start than Mr. Jefferson’s University.

We are accepting additional endorsements for our document.  If you are a student, faculty, or alumnus of any Virginia college or university, you can add your name by sending an email to co-author Siobhan Casey at siobhan-casey@hotmail.com.  Thomas Jefferson, who founded UVA back in 1819 near his home at Monticello, once wrote that “The care of human life and happiness, and not their destruction, is the first and only object of good government.”

AbortionSafety.com: Exposing abortion malpractice to abortion-minded women

This mock-up shows how AbortionSafety.com will look when it is launched later this year.

This mock-up shows how AbortionSafety.com will look when it is launched later this year.

One of the rising stars in the pro-life movement is Kelsey Hazzard, a law student at the U of Virginia.  She is also the founder and President of Secular Pro-Life.  Her latest project is a new website, AbortionSafety.com, which will target abortion-minded women with malpractice data and other information related to the “safety” of abortion.  Here’s the latest from Secular Pro-Life:

AbortionSafety.com

Secular Pro-Life announces a new women’s health website that will catalogue malpractice complaints against abortionists, and inform women about abortion’s risks and alternatives.  The website, AbortionSafety.com, has already garnered support from key pro-life leaders.

Secular Pro-Life, which encourages cooperation among pro-life people of all faith backgrounds, is organizing the project.

“There is a wealth of information in the public record about abortion providers who have injured or killed women,” said Kelsey Hazzard, the president of Secular Pro-Life.  “But the vast majority of women in crisis pregnancies simply don’t have the time or resources to go digging for that information themselves.  AbortionSafety.com will centralize the data and make it freely available.”

A team of volunteers, primarily students, is working with local advocates to gather information on abortion providers across the country.  AbortionSafety.com is set to go live in November 2011.  Fundraising is underway to cover the cost of advertisements, which will be tied to Google searches for terms like “abortion clinic” and “safe abortion.”

The site has been endorsed by Kristan Hawkins, the executive director of Students for Life of America and Pro-Life Action League president Eric Scheidler, among others.

“AbortionSafety.com is going to be a unique project and tool for the pro-life movement, because it will enable us to save thousands of preborn lives and prevent women from experiencing the trauma of abortion,” Hawkins said.

The project was inspired by the “Chicago Method,” a type of sidewalk counseling developed by the Pro-Life Action League, in which sidewalk counselors distribute copies of malpractice complaints to women entering the abortion facility.

To learn more about how you can support the project, visit AbortionSafety.com.

httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9UOJ-rObuQ8

Media coverage at Johns Hopkins and the University of Delaware

Pro Life on Campus at the University of Delaware

Pro Life on Campus at the University of Delaware

Here is the media coverage from our recent GAP excursion to Maryland and Delaware.

GAP at Johns Hopkins University

Johns Hopkins News-Letter

True Blue Conservative

GAP at the University of Delaware

Media coverage for Kentucky GAP

GAP photo in the Eastern Progress

GAP photo in the Eastern Progress

Check out the media coverage at Eastern Kentukcy and the Univesity of Kentucky.  You think they knew we were there?

The Eastern Progress at Eastern Kentucky University:

The Kentucky Kernel at the University of Kentucky:

Blue Coast Live:

Effective campus pro-life activism: Transition to new leadership

Mary Kate Cavazos of Students for Life

Mary Kate Cavazos of Students for Life

It’s one of the biggest obstacles to effective pro-life activism.

Perhaps the most important task for any pro-life campus group is choosing projects that are both strategic and effective.  Unwise choices leave the most important work undone.

But the transition of leadership from one group of leaders to the next is also very big.  In fact, we frequently encounter groups who have suffered greatly because the former leaders did not effectively pass the mantle of leadership on to the current crop.  Poor project selection and poor execution have been the inevitable result.

But we aren’t doing nothing to help the current leaders identify and train the next crop of leaders.  Each year, we co-host, along with the Students for Life of America (SFLA), our annual Pro-Life Student Leadership Conference.

SFLA has also been working very hard to improve the transition of pro-life leadership on campus.  Here is a video by SFLA’s Mary Kate Cavazos:

httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VXQZRc_TmBE

Mobile pro-life ultrasound ministry saves babies and moms

Mobile pro-life ultrasound ministry.

Mobile pro-life ultrasound ministry.

Got a call from Michael Homula yesterday.  He wanted me (and you) to know about their mobile pro-life ultrasound ministry. 

Please comment:  Where would you take this ultrasound bus?  OK, the mall, but where else?  People going to a clinic usually have already made up their minds.  What about places where lots of newly pregnant young people are likely to be struggling with the decision to abort?  Where do you suggest?

ICU Mobile – The Pioneer and Leader of Mobile Ultrasound Ministry

Globally, one in five pregnancies will end in an induced abortion.

One ministry plans to GO change that.

ICU Mobile (pronounced I See You), the pioneer and leader of mobile ultrasound ministry, is a non-profit ministry sharing love, grace and truth to serve women all over the world. Founded in Akron, Ohio in 2003, the ICU Mobile mission is simple: reveal life at the crossroads of decision. The approach is equally simple: reveal truth via ultrasound at a time when a woman is in the decision making process. They provide women experiencing an unplanned pregnancy the free opportunity to confirm that pregnancy via a limited obstetrical ultrasound and see her unborn child in order to make an informed life-affirming decision and hear the good news of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. As part of their core values, ICU Mobile delivers this free service without judgment, hate, coercion or politics.

The ICU Mobile fleet, currently at 15 across the country and growing rapidly, is made up of passionate and dedicated people brought together by a common goal to serve women in the name of Christ. As the very first mobile ultrasound ministry, more than 8 years of experience has refined their approach and defined a series of best practices to reach out to women who are confused, scared and unsure with love, grace and a message of hope. Revealing life, life knit together in the womb and eternal life through Jesus, they see hearts and minds change every day. Sure, the free ultrasound draws women to an ICU Mobile, but it’s the love and compassion while revealing life that gives women hope for a better future.

But the why behind ICU Mobile will always be Jesus Christ…God. Because of the unfair trade Christ made for us, our sin for his righteousness, ICU Mobile follows His command to GO (Matthew 28:19a).

GO to abortion-minded women. GO save the unborn. GO make disciples of all nations.

ICU Mobile Effectiveness

Since 2003, the Lord has used the ICU Mobile fleet to serve thousands of women, save thousands of babies and bring thousands to faith in Jesus Christ. In 2010 alone, 87% of women who were considering or planning to have an abortion chose life in the fleet of ICU Mobile. Of the people who heard the Gospel and were invited to follow Christ, 43% made a decision to commit their lives to Jesus as Lord and Saviour.

Go(ing) Mobile

ICU Mobile makes affiliation with their ministry simple, easy to access and provides a turnkey ready to deploy mobile solution for qualified pregnancy centers and ministries. As a non-profit ministry, the only goal is to deploy more mobiles to the mission so they have developed an affiliate plan that actually enables the deployment of the next mobile in the fleet. It is self-replicating.

While it may seem intuitive to park the mobile in front of abortion clinics, and ICU Mobile certainly does that, they have come to know it is better to be involved in the decision making process rather than trying to reverse a decision at the last minute. ICU Mobile credits their effectiveness to God and the fact they GO to where women are, where those who are likely to experience an unplanned pregnancy typically hang out. Leveraging their experience, research and neutral brand, they carefully place themselves where they can have the most effect on the decisions women make.

If you are a pregnancy center who would like to learn more about why mobile ultrasound ministry with ICU Mobile makes sense go to the Go Mobile page on their website.

If you would like to get involved with ICU Mobile please visit the Get Involved page.

To learn more general information about the pioneer and leader of mobile ultrasound ministry please visit http://www.icumobile.org/ or email info@icumobile.org.

A crisis pregnancy center on wheels? What’ll they think of next?!

Mobile pregnancy help center saves babies and moms and families in Houston, Texas.

Mobile pregnancy help center saves babies and moms and families in Houston, Texas.

I got this from Michael Silva of Imagi-Motive in Magnolia, Texas. And you thought only Disney had imagineers!

A Mobile Crisis Pregnancy Center

Society is ever-changing. What worked yesterday may not work today, especially when it involves ministry. Of course the message, the truth, remains the same, but the vehicle that we use to deliver the truth often needs a fresh face.

Imagi-Motive is a family-owned company that has a reputation for being innovative in the vehicles they design for extreme tailgaters or companies looking for a mobile marketing solution. However, the Mims family also has a heart for the unborn, and they have put their talents to work in the battle to save lives.

As you may know, Houston, Texas, unfortunately, houses the largest Planned Parenthood facility in the world. However, what may be news to you is how the Houston Coalition for Life is impacting Planned Parenthood‘s efforts. How are they making a difference? With a Mobile Crisis Pregnancy Vehicle!

In mid-January of this year, Imagi-Motive completed the mobile crisis unit, and the Houston Coalition for Life increased their presence in the community. They began seeing dramatic results right away. Within the first twenty-two outings, nearly seventy women had been ministered to, counseled, and given pregnancy tests. And, those who were contemplating an abortion were provided the opportunity to have an ultrasound. Most importantly, the lives of seven babies, who were already scheduled for abortion, were saved. Seven!

But, that is not all. One lady, scared for many reason and struggling with her decision to abort, got up from the abortion table, went back outside to the Mobile Crisis Pregnancy Vehicle, and chose life! All I can say is thank God for this ministry tool!

Imagi-Motive is on a mission to let every crisis pregnancy center in America know about these units and how they help save lives.

In Matthew 28:16-20, we are given The Great Commission by Christ. He instruct us to go—that’s right, go—and make disciples. There are many ways to impact the communities in which we live, and the Mobile Crisis Pregnancy Vehicle helps us achieve this directive.

Praise the Lord for lives saved!

For more information on this ministry tool, contact us at msilva@imagimotive.com.

Michael Silva
Imagi-Motive LLC
Magnolia, Texas

Abortion debate, Part 5: Fake clinics?

Helping pregnant women: damned if we do and damned if we don't.

Helping pregnant women: damned if we do and damned if we don't.

One of the most curious things said at the debate was Dr. McLean’s charge that pro-lifers are responsible for a network of “fake clinics.”  Dr. Mclean struck me as a fair-minded person, so I have to attribute this charge to spending too much time on uber-left websites in the hours leading up to our debate, because this charge clearly originates from radically pro-abortion groups who are committed to only one choice for women, and that’s abortion.  There is perhaps no charge that is more comcially hypocritical this that one.

I responded that when we are on campus, people routinely demand to know what we are doing to help women in crisis pregnancies.  I tell them we do quite a lot.  Pro-lifers run a network of centers where women and families can go to receive guidance, resources, referrals to doctors who will treat them for free, referrals to housing, etc.  In fact, pro-lifers spend many, many times more money on these activities than on educational projects like we do at CBR.  So, in response to all of this, we are to be condemned for running a network of “fake” clinics?  If that’s the game, we can’t win, because were damned if we do and damned if we don’t.

Secular ProLife and Students for Life of America have published a flier, Fake Clinics: Myth vs Fact, to respond to this charge.  Some of the text:

Claim: CPCs are “fake clinics.”

Pregnancy centers come in two types. The first is a traditional crisis pregnancy center or pregnancy resource center. They are not clinics and do not pretend to be, although in most states they are able to offer pregnancy tests and prenatal vitamins. They provide numerous social services, including parenting classes, options counseling, baby supplies, and other financial aid. The second type is a Pregnancy Help Medical Clinic. These are licensed clinics working under the direction of an M.D. Medical services provided vary from clinic to clinic, but often include ultrasounds, on-site prenatal exams, and/or STD testing. In neither case can these be considered “fake clinics.”

Claim: CPCs only care about preventing abortions.

CPCs serve a variety of women; not only the abortion-minded, but also women who have chosen adoption or parenting parenting, women whose babies have already been born, and women struggling with a prior abortion.

Claim: CPCs use volunteers, who are unqualified.

CPCs do utilize volunteers– and so does Planned Parenthood, the nation’s largest abortion provider and one source of this claim! All CPC volunteers undergo training to ensure that they are qualified.

Claim: CPCs have religious affiliations.

Some do and some don’t. Many respectable non-profits have religious affiliations. People who make this claim are usually implying something further: religious discrimination. This is patently false. No CPC will refuse a client on the basis of her religion.

Abortion debate, Part 3: The unanswered challenge

When does science tell us that life begins?

When does science tell us that life begins?

In her opening remarks, Dr. McLean asserted that the fetus is not a human. She made several other assertions and arguments that I rebutted, but this was the most glaring error of the debate. As Daniel Patrick Moynihan once said, “Everyone is entitled to his own opinion, but not to his own facts.”

My introductory comments were posted yesterday. In them, I challenged Dr. McLean to prove her assertion that the fetus was not human. I would accept almost all of her points. I would agree that abortion should be legal, that abortion should be covered by insurance, that I would even quit my job and find another career. I would do all of this, if and only if she could present conclusive scientific and/or philosophic evidence to show that the preborn child is not human. As you may be aware, no such evidence exists.

To rebut the myth that the unborn child is not human (or that life doesn’t begin at conception), I quoted both medical textbooks and pro-abortion sources:

Zygote. This cell results from the union of an oocyte and a sperm during fertilization. A zygote is the beginning of a new human being (i.e., an embryo). … [The zygote] marked the beginning of each of us as a unique individual. (Keith L. Moore and T.V.N. Persaud, The Developing Human: Clinically Oriented Embryology, 7th ed., Philadelphia: Saunders, 2003, pp 2,16)

It is the penetration of the ovum by a spermatozoan and resultant mingling of the nuclear material … that constitutes the culmination of the process of fertilization and marks the initiation of the life of a new individual. (Bradley M. Patten, Human Embryology, 3rd ed., New York: McGraw Hill, 1968, p 43)

We of today know that man is born of sexual union; that he starts life as an embryo within the body of the female; and that the embryo is formed from the fusion of two single cells, the ovum and the sperm. This all seems so simple and evident to us that it is difficult to picture a time when it was not part of the common knowledge. (Alan F. Guttmacher. Life in the Making: The Story of Human Procreation. New York: Viking Press, 1933. p 3.) [Alan Guttmacher is a former president of Planned Parenthood.]

Perhaps the most straightforward relation between you and me on the one hand and every human fetus from conception onward on the other is this: All are living members of the same species, homo sapiens. A human fetus, after all, is simply a human being at a very early stage in his or her development. (David Boonin, A Defense of Abortion, New York: Cambridge University Press, 2002, p 20)

In the top drawer of my desk, I keep [a picture of my son]. This picture was taken on September 7, 1993, 24 weeks before he was born. The sonogram image is murky, but it reveals clear enough a small head tilted back slightly, and an arm raised up and bent, with the hand pointing back toward the face and the thumb extended out toward the mouth. There is no doubt in my mind that this picture, too, shows [my son] at a very early stage in his physical development. And there is no question that the position I defend in this book entails that it would have been morally permissible to end his life at this point. (David Boonin, A Defense of Abortion, New York: Cambridge University Press, 2003, p xiv)

Case closed, but if you want more proof, check out this article: When does life begin?

More coverage to follow in Part 4.