by FRC Media Office
July 29, 2015
FRC’s Arina Grossu speaks at the DC #WomenBetrayed Rally
FRC’s Arina Grossu speaks at the DC #WomenBetrayed Rally
Watch the videos of their moving speeches on the House floor here:
For two decades, in the House of Representatives, the U.S. Senate, and now as Governor of Kansas, Sam Brownback has stood with conviction and compassion for the unborn and for their mothers, both victimized by a predatory abortion industry. Under his leadership, Kansas has now become the eighth state to address the gruesome videos showing Planned Parenthood officials discuss the marketing of organs from unborn babies aborted late in the term of their pregnancies. Here is an excerpt from Gov. Brownback’s statement:
“Kansas remains committed to a culture that respects the dignity of life at all stages. Recent videos show Planned Parenthood employees treating the unborn as commodities as they discuss the sale of tissue and organs. This does not reflect the culture of life most Kansans want.
“We now call upon the Kansas Board of Healing Arts to address the issue of sale of tissue and organs from the unborn in its inspections of Kansas medical offices.
“Human life has dignity at all stages of life. Senate Bill 95, banning dismemberment abortion in Kansas, prevents the barbaric procedure of dismembering an unborn child.
“We must remind ourselves and others that unborn children are just that — children — with certain inalienable rights that we must respect and protect.”
FRC applauds Gov. Brownback, the governors of Arizona, Georgia, Indiana, Louisiana, Missouri, and Texas, and Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine for are standing up to the Planned Parenthood behemoth in calling for reviews of Planned Parenthood practices and how they might violate the law.
For a timely, clear analysis, watch FRC President Tony Perkins talking with Fox News’ Megyn Kelly about Planned Parenthood’s practice of harvesting the organs of healthy aborted babies.
Much has been written about Planned Parenthood’s abort-for-organs video. That’s encouraging; not to have seen an effusion of outrage, pain, grief, and sheer horror would have been a dreadful commentary on our national hardness.
As Ed Stetzer notes, “progressive” Evangelicals and Mainstream Protestants, usually the first to accuse the pro-life community of caring more about the unborn than (a) their mothers, (b) babies after they are born, or (c) virtually immeasurable cryptosporidium pollution in certain public water shelves (we plead guilty to the last), “have been conspicuously absent, when they’ve spoken up on so many other issues.”
Many who take compassionate, unequivocal, and unashamed stances on the sanctity of unborn life and the predation of the abortion industry on vulnerable women commented with unusual passion and eloquence. Here are few choice selections:
The true import of the Nucatola video is its casual moral grotesqueness. Manipulating a baby in the womb to kill it in a fashion best suited to selling off its organs is a repellant act, pure and simple … We have long been told how unborn babies are “blobs of tissue” that deserve no moral respect or legal protection. Yet here is an official from the leading abortion provider in the country talking of their livers, lungs and hearts, and of preserving those organs for their value. What Deborah Nucatola describes is the reality of abortion. If you can’t handle it, you can’t handle the truth.
… It doesn’t bring me comfort to know that one child is torn apart so that maybe they can do research on the child’s organs to in some future moment help a different child. Not every woman is being asked that her aborted child would be used for research and we really don’t know the whys. Maybe they’re looking for particularly healthy moms. Maybe they’re looking for very mature, healthy babies. Maybe it’s a situation where a particular mom couldn’t afford to have the abortion procedure and so they swap off and say if you can’t afford to have the abortion procedure maybe we can cover the cost by then possibly selling some of these organs then. We don’t know. But I think maybe the question needs to be asked.
Dr. Nucatola adds, “I’d say a lot of people want liver. And for that reason, most providers will do this case under ultrasound guidance, so they’ll know where they’re putting their forceps.” So think about this: Planned Parenthood opposes the use of ultrasounds when their purpose is to reveal the humanity of a child (and in doing so may discourage abortion) – but it supports the use of ultrasounds when the purpose is for selling the body parts of unborn children. After all, how are we going to know which parts of an unborn child to crush without ultrasound guidance?
Writing at Cosmopolitan magazine, abortion supporter Robin Marty said that she had seen the video. Then she said, “Now, frankly, I’m just going to yawn.” Maybe she will, but if so that will require a massive act of denial. Later in her own essay she stated: “I shuddered when listening to the discussion of how the fetus can be removed, and the idea of a ‘menu’ of fetal tissue and organs that could be procured depending on the gestational age of the pregnancies being terminated and the number of patients who consent to donating is one I hope I never have to encounter again.”
Once again, which is it?
I give the last word to Briton Timothy Stanley, writing in CNN.com:
What matters about this video is what it appears to reveal about the reality behind America’s sanitized image of abortion; the reality of what an abortion is and how it morally compromises us all … It’s like watching Hannibal Lecter discuss making a human casserole and protesting that all the ingredients were provided willingly … We’ve been too casual for too long about some of the terrible problems that lie around us — be they abortions or the poverty and desperation that can drive women to seek one. The Planned Parenthood video holds up a mirror to a society that has become compromised by horrors that it regards as “every day.” The face of 21st-century America is Nucatola’s: discussing pulverized lungs and hearts between mouthfuls of salad.
Let’s pray for Dr. Nucatola, for Cecile Richards, for all of their Planned Parenthood colleagues, and for the thousands of women looking for help and healing instead of an abortionist’s scalpel and a culture’s grand, cold, deathly lie.
“Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death…”
Recently, I listened, sickened, as Planned Parenthood Federation of America’s Senior Director of Medical Services cavalierly discussed their harvesting and selling of babies’ organs. She ate and drank casually while describing which parts of the babies’ bodies would be crushed by the forceps and which would not, depending on which organ(s) needed to be kept intact in order to be sold. In great detail, she spoke of how babies would be manipulated into the breech position with ultrasound guidance in order to allow certain organs to be removed more easily. The method she described is suspiciously similar to partial birth abortion. Without shame, she stated that while there is a partial birth abortion ban, “Laws are up to interpretation. So if I say on day one I do not intend to do this, what ultimately happens doesn’t matter.”
Is this really what we have come to? In America, are we literally walking through the valley of the shadow of death? It certainly feels that way.
I know abortion is not always an easy choice that mothers make. I know sometimes girls and women are there out of desperation. I know sometimes they are pressured into it. I know sometimes they feel like they have no way out. I know sometimes they feel like they have nothing to offer their child in life. And I am so very sorry.
Can we take a step back for a minute? Let’s look at the leaders of Planned Parenthood Federation of America (PPFA) and its affiliates. How did they become so callous as to condone the ripping apart of babies and the selling of their hearts, lungs, livers, and muscles, behind closed doors, in violation of law, not to mention violation of basic human ethics? Surely this latest news is enough to finally convince us that PPFA leadership is not passionate about the empowerment of all women and safe reproductive health. They don’t care about compassion. Why? Because they are changing abortion procedures, not to help the women, but to most successfully harvest organs. But goodness, they sure are passionate about keeping the door wide open on “choice,” because without it, how would they make money? They will do anything and everything, vile and horrific, for profit.
They have been so thoroughly deceived and their consciences so seared that they are walking through the valley of the shadow of death, digging that valley even deeper, and they don’t even acknowledge it. They try to make it appealing and honorable. They try to dress up the horror with words like “research” and “consent” and “high-quality health care.” But no one can put a pretty bow on the dismembered bodies littering this valley floor and make it all ok somehow.
In what world do we discuss the nuances of exactly how much money was spent on which organ and whether it was a donation or reimbursement or payment, in order to make it seem less awful?
This is a culture of death that we cannot afford to ignore. It is our culture. We are right in the middle of it, paying for it with our tax dollars, willingly or unwillingly.
A culture of death is a completely logical culture for anyone who doesn’t value life. While we should be nauseated by the grotesque practices of abortionists behind closed doors, it occurs to me that I should not have been shocked. To them, babies are devoid of human dignity and value, so why not make a profit off of their organs? It’s all about the bottom line anyway. They call it fetal tissue. The truth is, those parts are real organs from unborn children. Organ donors are commendable, but abortionists who profit from the organs of babies who cannot give their consent are deplorable.
Sometimes I wish I could run out of this valley, or at least close my eyes and hold my nose to pretend this doesn’t exist. But the fact is, this is where we are. It’s time to decide what to do. Ignoring it, downplaying it, sterilizing it will only result in allowing death to spread. We cannot ignore this. We cannot pretend it isn’t that bad, or that it will go away. It is that bad, and it won’t go away unless we do something about it.
We must fight with love and compassion but also with incredible resolve. This is a deep and dark valley, yes, but love, truth, and compassion can transform it. Death can be overcome with life, darkness with light. We can raise this valley and clear it of shadows, allowing light to once again shine on it and purify this blood-stained ground.
We are still in this valley of the shadow of death. But let’s not be wearied or discouraged into accepting it as it is. Let’s be the generation that transforms it. Let’s build a culture that celebrates life!
Hundreds of thousands of Americans gathered at the Nation’s Capitol on the 4th of July to celebrate our independence. The crowds were awash in red, white, and blue clothing, and many Captain America t-shirts dotted the crowd at the parade. Flags were being proudly waved everywhere and seemingly by everyone.
Energy was high as the parade began. Those hundreds of thousands of people were eager to celebrate their freedom. No whispered threats of ISIS attacks could dissuade them from celebrating.
They were not afraid of danger. When it began to pour down rain and when lightning flashed from the sky, the U.S. Park Services had to close the Mall in order to get the people to seek cover. As soon as the rain subsided, the American people were right back out there to continue the celebration.
That’s the spirit of Americans: we share common experiences, dreams, and even joyous public events. While the rain poured down, Americans from all across the country huddled together in sheltering awnings. Everyone was united in the festivals. All were equal under the rain and under the law.
And yet one group of Americans was there declaring that something was wrong. They declared that there is deep inconsistency in our land. These concerned Americans were arguing that the equality declared in our founding documents is still not being applied to all people.
They were holding signs noting that up to 58 million unborn persons have been legally aborted in the United States since 1973. They argued that these millions of persons have not been afforded the liberty and equality upon which America is founded. These pro-life activists declared that the promise of America has not been fulfilled. America is not fully the land of the free, because the unborn do not experience the right to life.
This is a country whose founding document proclaims that “all men are created equal and are endowed by their Creator with … the right to life…” while what the Founders called “generations yet unborn” do not enjoy the fulfillment of this God-given right. Not all men are treated equally in the United States of America today. And until they are, the celebration of Independence Day will be incomplete.
Americans United for Life (AUL) has released its fourth report in a series of exposés of Planned Parenthood (PPFA). This report details PPFA’s expansion strategy of building new mega-centers for abortions and how PPFA’s increased focus is on abortion.
A striking chart shows that from 2006 to 2013, the number of abortions performed by PPFA has gone up while cancer screening and preventative services have gone down by more than 50 percent. Since 2004, mega-centers have opened in at least 19 cities and with them abortions have gone up nationwide by more than 70,000 abortions annually.
Think of these Planned Parenthood mega-centers as “abortion Wal-Marts.” Where they open, the smaller abortion centers shut down, and Planned Parenthood gets a bigger piece of the abortion industry pie. From 2004 to 2011, Planned Parenthood went from performing 20 percent to more than 32 percent of all abortions in the United States.
The abortion market might be in at a decline everywhere else, but at Planned Parenthood, “business” is good.
Yet taxpayer money continues to be handed over to America’s #1 abortion provider. PPFA rakes in more than $500 million annually from taxpayer funds; this composes more than 40 percent of its overall revenue.
FRC’s Planned Parenthood factsheet also reveals that not only has Planned Parenthood decreased its cancer screening and preventative programs, but it also has decreased adoption referrals. Comparing 2011 and 2013, the likelihood of a woman getting an abortion rather than an adoption referral at a Planned Parenthood increased from 145 times to 174 times. From 2011 to 2013, adoption referrals decreased by 18 percent. In addition, from 2009 to 2013, prenatal services steadily decreased and dropped by more than half, and breast exams consistently decreased and dropped by a total of 41 percent.
So what exactly is Planned Parenthood doing besides building mega-centers and ending the lives of developing babies? Apparently, increasingly little else.
Although recent AP reports that abortion is on the decline shocked many, past studies have well documented this trend. For instance, last June the Marriage and Religion Research Institute (MARRI) released its Family and Social Trendlines to consolidate federal data on family issues. A series of charts from this report will help contextualize the AP’s findings.
As Chart 1 shows, abortion procurement peaked in the early 90’s and has declined since. In fact, the number of abortions in 2008 was lower than the number of abortions in 1977.
A closer look at abortion demographics in the past two decades reveals the nature of this decline. Chart 2 breaks down the abortion rate by the age of the mother. Between 1990 and 2008:
Especially noteworthy is the sharp decline in abortions for teens. For both 15- to 17-year-olds and 18- to 19-year-olds, abortion procurement was cut by more than half. Abortions to 20- to 24-year-olds, the age group obtaining the most abortions, also significantly dropped.
Likewise, the U.S. abortion rate declined for every race/ ethnicity, especially for Blacks and Hispanics (see Chart 3 below). Between 1993 and 2008:
A comparison of Charts 4 and 5 provide a core insight into abortion trends. Between 1990 and 2008, the rate of pregnancies, live births, abortions, and miscarriages to married women remained relatively stable. In other words, married women have not significantly affected abortion rates.
However, that is not the case for unmarried women. In fact, in the early 90’s—around the same time abortion numbers began declining—the ratio of women who gave birth to women who had an abortion swapped. By 1993, more women chose to have their baby than women who chose to abort him/ her. This gap has progressively widened since the early 90’s.
Although the surge of unmarried women who decide to carry their pregnancy to term may not be the only factor affecting abortion numbers, it is certainly a vital demographic trend that cannot be ignored. This trend is not entirely surprising. As FRC expert, Arina Grossu, points out, increased technology, medical knowledge, and social support allows traditionally marginalized women—teenagers, minorities, and those with unintended pregnancies—the choice to give birth. This is, indeed, a profound and momentous advancement for women in America.
Is there anything more heart wrenching than an unmarked grave filled with the remains of almost 50 tragically ended lives that no one came to mourn? One man was responsible for all of the deaths represented by this particular grave. None of the victims had any chance of survival against his schemes – if they survived the first attempt, he had a sure fall back plan. This man was eventually caught, tried, and convicted. The rest of his life will be spent paying for theirs.
Two years ago, the remains of babies aborted in Dr. Gosnell’s “house of horrors” were buried in this grave. But while Dr. Gosnell is behind bars, never again to hurt another baby, there are countless other babies being killed daily by excruciatingly painful abortions.
Is it possible that any good could come out of such tragedy, this long nightmare with life and death consequences?
Stories like this reawaken our innate craving for justice in the world. Where were those who could have defended these victims? Why did he get away with it for so long? Why did no one listen when there were rumors of brutality and callousness?
For so many questions, we will never find answers. But there is a question that must be answered, a question that we must participate in answering.
What will we do with this knowledge?
After being graciously given the location of the grave, Reverend Patrick Mahoney of the Christian Defense Coalition led a group to the Laurel Hill Cemetery in Pennsylvania last week to mourn these lost lives, and to make a statement to the world that their lives are worth remembering. A temporary grave marker was erected with this prayer inscribed on it:
May God welcome the souls of these children killed by Kermit Gosnell, and the souls of all children, killed by abortion, into the joy of Heaven.
The day after Rev. Mahoney’s graveside service for these babies, Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SC) introduced S. 1553, the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act in the Senate. The bill prohibits late abortion on babies after 20 weeks post-fertilization on the scientific basis that at this age they can feel intense pain. The identical bill was just passed by the House of Representatives on the second anniversary of the conviction of Dr. Gosnell.
Dr. Gosnell was convicted of first degree murder of 3 babies, as he snipped their spinal cords just after they had been born. Ironically, he aborted countless others at the same age as those three, but because they were just inside their mother’s body, he was not charged with first-degree murder for their deaths. But they felt the same pain as those killed just outside. They were just as alive, and were left just as dead.
The Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act would prevent these sorts of deaths from occurring routinely in abortion clinics and hospitals all over the country. This bill needs to pass the Senate.
Maybe this horrific story can be redeemed. Maybe people will see the humanity of these unborn, pain-capable children. And maybe we can change the law to protect them.
The Associated Press reported this week that abortions have decreased nationally by 12 percent since 2010. This is an encouraging sign showing that hearts and minds are changing on the issue of abortion. Where’s the momentum coming from?
First, as technological improvements, such as 4D ultrasounds, continue to show the humanity of the unborn child, more mothers reject abortion. In a survey conducted by the National Institute of Family and Life Advocates (NIFLA), found that 78 percent of mothers considering abortion who viewed an ultrasound image of their unborn child chose life.
Second, science also confirms that unborn children feel pain by 20 weeks post-fertilization. The pro-life movement is the one that is rooted in science and medical facts. As more people learn about the actual development of the unborn baby, it becomes that much more difficult to deny her humanity. In fact, the House passed and the U.S. Senate tomorrow is introducing a bill to protect unborn pain-capable babies from abortion.
Third, states have enacted more laws in the past four years than in the entire decade previous. These laws save lives. Surprisingly, abortions are down even in liberal states like New York, Washington and Oregon, which maintained unrestricted access to abortion, the AP reports.
Dr. Michael New expresses some caveats to the good news. He notes that the survey should have focused on abortion rates instead of abortion numbers and that abortion data from state health departments can be unreliable because of less rigorous reporting standards. Even so, he says that a smaller percentage of women with unintended pregnancies are having abortions. Pulling from Guttmacher Institute data, he explains that the percentage of unintended pregnancies ending in abortion fell from 54 percent in 1994 to 40 percent in 2008. He also reminds us that since 1990 when abortions in the U.S. peaked, they have declined by approximately 34 percent since then.
There’s good reason for hope in the pro-life movement as technology and science continue show us the humanity of the unborn. As more states enact pro-life legislation and as public opinion continues to shift on the side of life, the momentum is likely to continue. Let’s be encouraged as we continue to work to dismantle legalized abortion in the U.S. and relegate it to a dark chapter of our history. Our future rests in the protection of the lives of our unborn brothers and sisters in the womb.