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Monday, July 28, 2008

Abortions Temporarily Suspended by Planned Parenthood in South Dakota

The following was submitted to Christian Newswire today by Dr. Allen D. Unruh of Sioux Falls:

On Monday, July 21, 2008, women in South Dakota showed up for their abortion appointments at 8:00 a.m. But there was a sign on the door that Planned Parenthood was closed. Monday is the day that Planned Parenthood usually schedules abortions at its Sioux Falls abortion clinic. On those Mondays, Planned Parenthood flies a doctor in from Minneapolis, Minnesota, to perform 15 to 20 abortions. On this Monday, no unborn babies died in South Dakota by an abortion. The reason Planned Parenthood suspended its abortion practice this week should be the most exciting news the Culture of Life has ever had. Monday was the first day Planned Parenthood had to comply with South Dakota's new Abortion Informed Consent Law. The Law became effective because of a decision of an en banc Court of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit, on June 27, 2008, which vacated an injunction. Now Planned Parenthood must comply with the requirements of the Law.

Among other things, the new law requires the abortion doctor to advise the pregnant mother, in writing, that the abortion will "terminate the life of a whole, separate, unique, living human being." The U.S. Court of Appeals rejected Planned Parenthood's argument that the Statute violated the doctor's first amendment rights. Planned Parenthood is contending that the statement is one of "ideology." The Court held that the Statute made it clear the statement was a statement of biological fact, not one of ideology; and the evidence produced did not demonstrate it was anything other than an accurate statement of biological fact.

The new Law also requires the abortion doctor to inform the pregnant mother that the pregnant mother and the second human being have an existing relationship that enjoys protection under the Constitution of the United States, and that the procedure terminates that relationship and the rights associated with it. The Law also requires disclosure of medical risks, including the risk of depression and "increased risk of suicide ideation and suicide."

After the case was remanded back to the Federal District Court on June 27th, Planned Parenthood's lawyers attempted to convince the District Court Judge to enter a new injunction concerning the disclosures other than the "human being" disclosure. On Thursday, July 17th, the District Court refused to enter another injunction and the Law became effective on Monday, July 21st.

When someone finally came to the Planned Parenthood office this last Monday, no abortion doctors arrived with them. No abortion doctor flew into South Dakota that day. The penalties for abortionist's non-compliance could include a prison sentence, loss of medical license, and civil liability. In South Dakota, a wrongful death case can be brought for the death of an unborn child at any age of gestation. Time will tell if an abortionist will take the medical and legal risk of completing abortions in South Dakota without compliance to the 8th Circuit decision. The new rules are that they must tell the truth. The immediate beneficiaries of this new law are the women and their children. The women will be better informed, and that information, for some, will most likely result in the women keeping their children. More children will live.

But, perhaps the greatest beneficiary is our culture at large.

In the lawsuit brought by Planned Parenthood challenging the constitutionality of South Dakota's Informed Consent Law, Dr. Bernard Nathanson testified that he was one of the original founders of the National Alliance to Repeal Abortion Laws (NARAL). He is probably the last living original founder. He testified that as part of their strategy, the NARAL founders decided that they had to deny what they knew to be true -- that an abortion killed a living human being. They decided to deceive the public (and the courts) by maintaining that what was "evacuated" in an abortion was "just some tissue." Dr. Nathanson has blown NARAL's cover. The Eighth Circuit has now shown a bright light on the truth. And the truth will, in the end, set us free.

For addition information about the 8th Circuit Court decision or the Initiative to end abortion as birth control in South Dakota which is on November’s ballot, go to www.voteyesforlife.com.


14 comments:

Haggs said...

Okay, if there are no more legal abortions happening in South Dakota, then can you guys go away and stop bothering us now?

Bob Ellis said...

Once we can be sure they'll remain stopped, we will.

It's such a terrible bother, defending innocent human life, isn't it?

Haggs said...

Sorry. I just find a lot of pro-lifers annoying and kinda jerky. It would be one thing if they were just politely defending their position, but they seem to always want to add in some jerkiness into discussions. Like calling the other side of the discussion "murderers" and childish dismissal of other viewpoints makes your side really annoying.

Even though I'm pro-choice, and believe shutting down abortion in SD will end up hurting a lot of women, I almost hope you do stop abortion just so we can stop focusing so much on this issue.

Bob Ellis said...

I just don't know what else to call the wrongful taking of innocent human life but "murder." It fits the definition, so why pussy-foot around by pretending it's something innocuous.

I think all of us pro-lifers will be glad when we can finally stop focusing on the issue, because we can't stop that until the killing stops.

alexh2007 said...

Bob, "murder" consists of the UNLAWFUL killing of a person. Seeing as how abortion is legal at the moment, I think "murder" is technically the wrong word to use in this debate.

But if you insist on defining murder as the wrongful taking of innocent human life, you had better use the same word to describe the collateral damage we're committing overseas in this "war on terror." Just a thought.

Bob Ellis said...

Murder is the wrongful (which should coincide with what is illegal, but doesn't always) killing of innocent human life.

Murder is the only appropriate word in this case...unless, of course, we are dedicated to fooling ourselves into believing our crimes are morally acceptable.

The war on terror is being fought to stop people who are intent on more of that "wrongful taking of innocent human life." They mean to murder innocent human life, and we are there to stop them. We do our best to ensure innocent civilians aren't hurt in the process. And if we could either (a) wipe out these murderous thugs, or (b) they would lay down their arms and choose the path of life, then our guys could all come home.

But as long as some are intent on murder, we must remain to protect the innocent, both in Iraq...and in the wombs of American women.

alexh2007 said...

To avoid an endless circle of what we think "murder" is, here's what Webster has to say: "the crime of unlawfully killing a person especially with malice aforethought" (http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/murder).

Abortion is legal, murder is not. Therefore, abortion is not murder in the eyes of the law. I know you have a problem when it comes to facts staring you in the face, so I understand why you insist on letting your emotions determine what qualifies as murder. Yes, abortion is sad and horrible, but it is not murder.

That said, if you want to define murder in your own way, then you must believe that collateral damage caused by the U.S. military counts as murder. I personally don't believe it does, given Webster's definition, but if we're going by Bob-logic, an errant bomb falling on civilians qualifies as "the wrongful killing of innocent human life" -- i.e., murder -- does it not?

Then again, perhaps you don't think it's "wrongful" for an invading military to accidentally drop bombs on your house while you're sitting down to dinner with your family. I predict some backpedaling...

Bob Ellis said...

No, Alex, as usual you have it backward.

The accidental dropping of a bomb on an innocent civilian's home is "sad and horrible" but it's not murder; there was no intent to kill the innocent civilian.

Abortion, however involves the intent to kill the innocent child, and is therefore murder.

The definition you cited assumes concordance between law and morality, as there should be and was in the case of abortion until some judges in 1973 took it upon themselves to wave a magic wand and suddenly (and without law) cleave law from morality and suddenly declare it to be legal to kill your unborn child.

Sadly, what's legal isn't always moral, and what's moral isn't always legal--and that divergence is getting worse all the time with our departure from a Christian worldview.

So yes, killing an unborn child is murder, regardless of what judges acting outside the Constitution and their authority claim.

alexh2007 said...

There's that backpedaling! I knew you'd deliver.

The definition I've cited says nothing about morality, but merely the criterion that murder must be unlawful/illegal to be considered murder. Abortion is neither unlawful nor illegal, therefore in the eyes of the law, it...is...not...murder. It's like pulling teeth with you, isn't it?!

Bob Ellis said...

Let me provide an example which, given your background, might get the point across.

Let’s say a homophobic congress or a homophobic supreme court passes or creates a law which says that because homosexuals don’t have sex as humans were intended to, they are not human and it is therefore completely acceptable to kill them if they bother you.

Killing homosexuals is now legal. By your reckoning, if it is legal, it can’t be murder.

Here is the question: since it’s now “legal” in our theoretical universe to kill homosexuals, is it no longer murder to kill a homosexual? In reality, what has changed to alter the morality of the act? And what are the implications of that?

Sir William Blackstone, whose legal works formed the foundation of much thinking, and a great deal of the foundation of our legal system in the fledgling United States, in referring to the transcendent moral law, said “Upon these two foundations, the law of nature and the law of revelation, depend all human laws; that is to say, no human laws should be suffered to contradict these.”

And to explain what he meant by the law of nature and to further elaborate on this parallel between morality and legality, Blackstone said, “This will of his Maker is called the law of nature. This law of nature...dictated by God himself, is of course superior in obligation to any other. It is binding over all the globe in all countries, and at all times: no human laws are of any validity, if contrary to this; and such of them as are valid derive all their force and all their authority, mediately or immediately, from this original.”

As I said before, implicit in the definition is the assumption that the legal and moral would be in harmony. Unfortunately, because our legal system has departed from objective truth, they often do not anymore.

When you start basing someone’s humanity on the level of comfort they cause or rob you of, everyone’s can be in jeopardy. When you go about basing morality on legality, you’re placing yourself and everyone else in harm’s way.

Bob Ellis said...

Let me provide an example which, given your background, might get the point across.

Let’s say a homophobic congress or a homophobic supreme court passes or creates a law which says that because homosexuals don’t have sex as humans were intended to, they are not human and it is therefore completely acceptable to kill them if they bother you.

Killing homosexuals is now legal. By your reckoning, if it is legal, it can’t be murder.

Here is the question: since it’s now “legal” in our theoretical universe to kill homosexuals, is it no longer murder to kill a homosexual? In reality, what has changed to alter the morality of the act? And what are the implications of that?

Sir William Blackstone, whose legal works formed the foundation of much thinking, and a great deal of the foundation of our legal system in the fledgling United States, in referring to the transcendent moral law, said “Upon these two foundations, the law of nature and the law of revelation, depend all human laws; that is to say, no human laws should be suffered to contradict these.”

And to explain what he meant by the law of nature and to further elaborate on this parallel between morality and legality, Blackstone said, “This will of his Maker is called the law of nature. This law of nature...dictated by God himself, is of course superior in obligation to any other. It is binding over all the globe in all countries, and at all times: no human laws are of any validity, if contrary to this; and such of them as are valid derive all their force and all their authority, mediately or immediately, from this original.”

As I said before, implicit in the definition is the assumption that the legal and moral would be in harmony. Unfortunately, because our legal system has departed from objective truth, they often do not anymore.

When you start basing someone’s humanity on the level of comfort they cause or rob you of, everyone’s can be in jeopardy. When you go about basing morality on legality, you’re placing yourself and everyone else in harm’s way.

alexh2007 said...

Wait, a hypothetical example designed specifically with my background and personal bias in mind, trying to get me to change my answer or trip me up? I thought that was MY job!

If you read my comments, you'll notice that I use the phrase "in the eyes of the law" when saying that abortion is not considered murder. This is because no matter what you think or what your emotions dictate, the law does not view abortion as murder; if it did, the mothers would be tried, convicted, and imprisoned/executed just like a real murderer. They are not, so that should tell you something.

I'll remind you of our previous chats in which I said something to the effect of, "No matter what you think, same-sex marriage does exist in the places where it's legal, according to the law." It's the same basic idea.

So to address your example of the legalized killing of homosexuals, I'd have to say that no, it would not be considered murder IN THE EYES OF THE LAW, which is all that matters. I personally would consider it murder because I'm gay, just as you consider abortion to be murder and same-sex marriage to be a myth because the Bible tells you to. But in doing so, we let our individual biases define legal terminology, and we would be denying what the law officially and clearly states. In the Middle East, for example, it is not considered murder when a homosexual (whether proven or merely alleged) is executed by the state. Incidentally, this brings me to the issue I'd wanted you to comment on in a different thread, but that's neither here nor there. Point is, we look at realities like this with incredulous horror, but to the people under these regimes, it's the law.

You seem like someone who's familiar with the evangelical catchphrase "The Bible says it, I believe it, that settles it!" Regardless of what Bob wants to think, he must refer to the Bible for the final word. Likewise, so must Alex refer to the law when defining legal terms like murder, abortion, etc., and learning their crucial distinctions. We can't let our personal biases get in the way.

Bob Ellis said...

I agree we shouldn't let our personal biases get in the way. How tremendously unfortunate that five judges didn't have enough integrity to do that in 1973.

It's interesting that, while you did your best to hedge, you were still forced to say that, by your definition, killing a homosexual in the hypothetical situation wouldn't be murder.

Your philosophical dedication to the premise that no objective truth exists is either admirable or incredibly foolhardy, and I'd venture the latter. You don't seem to have given much thought to the implication of such a position, either.

If you had, I think you would have, even grudgingly, admitted to the wisdom of Sir Blackstone's statements.

alexh2007 said...

Do you really think my dedication has a chance of being admirable, or are you just being nice? After all, I'm not a conservative, so I must be a fool! :)

 
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