Congressional abortion advocates flex muscle
WASHINGTON — Abortion advocates in Congress killed funding for community health centres that serve uninsured Americans after pro-life legislators led by retiring House Majority leader Dick Armey (R-Tex) inserted language into the bill that would allow hospitals and health plans to opt out of performing abortions. The measure, designed to help Catholic and other private hospitals and health plans that do not wish to perform or provide coverage for abortions, affirms an existing law that permits private physicians, hospitals and training programs that receive federal funds from being compelled to perform abortions or train doctors to commit them. Several states have challenged the existing exemptions.
New York targets crisis pregnancy centers
ALBANY, N.Y. — New York State Attorney-General Elliot Spitzer (D) launched a major legal offensive against New York City area pro-life crisis pregnancy centers when at least four CPCs were served subpoenas notifying them that they are being investigated for violating “one or more” laws by allegedly “misrepresenting the services they provide, diagnosing pregnancy and advising persons on medical options without being licensed to do so, and/or providing deceptive and inaccurate medical information.” At least one group, Expectant Mother Care which has five NYC pregnancy center locations, is assembling a team of attorneys to respond to the allegations.
‘Former embryos’ protest against IVF clinics
NORFOLK, Virg. — Pro-lifers dressed in T-shirts emblazoned with the words “former embryo” demonstrated at the Jones Institute for Reproductive Medicine Dec. 28 as the American Life League launched a campaign that takes “a serious look at in vitro-fertilization.” IVF destroys up to nine embryonic human beings for every one pregnancy brought to term. The event was held on the 20th anniversary of the first IVF birth in the U.S. Last summer, the Washington Post reported that the Jones Institute was also creating human embryos specifically to be destroyed for research.
New Jersey to promote abstinence in schools
TRENTON, N.J. — Acting New Jersey Govenor Donald DiFrancesco (R) signed into law a measure that requires all educational material and classes dealing with contraception to stress abstinence as “the only certain method to prevent pregnancy and sexually transmitted diseases.”
Building donated to CPC
GULF, N.C. — The Reach Out Crisis Pregnancy Centre, which offers assistance to women or couples who are pregnant or have just had a child, as well as post-abortion counselling, was given the property the center had been leasing from Sanford Contractors Inc. for the past three years. When it came time to renew the lease, Sanford Contractor president Donald Oldham decided to give the centre the property and the building. Susan Ferguson, executive director of the non-profit centre, said Oldham’s donation “was truly a blessing from God.”
Prisoner of conscience
BUFFALO — Fr. Norman Weslin, a 70-year-old Catholic priest, is in a federal prison because he prayed the rosary outside a Buffalo abortuary. Fr. Weslin has prayed on the sidewalk outside the GYN Womenservices clinic before without incident, but was arrested for violating the so-called federal “buffer zone” in front of the abortion facility. He is being held in contempt of court and could be fined up to $5,000.
Newly discovered IVF problem
CHICAGO — Research into in-vitro fertilization treatment by an American fertility expert, Professor Alan Beer of the Chicago Medical School, found that in many cases a mother’s immune system attacks and kills newly conceived embryos. Beer found that seven out of 10 women in a trial group who had undergone three failed IVF treatment cycles had higher than normal levels of the tumour necrosis factor alpha chemical, which is also responsible for certain auto-immune diseases.
Michigan promotes better end-of-life care
ANN ARBOUR, Mich. — Michigan Govenor John Engler (R) signed a law improving end of life care by promoting better pain management for terminally ill patients and increasing access to hospice care. Engler said that patients should be entitled to expect effective and compassionate care at the end of their lives.
Theatres refuse pro-life ads
INDIANAPOLIS — Two Kerasotes movie theaters in Indianapolis stopped running Indiana Right to Life’s paid ads which feature a toll free number to call for confidential assistance when facing crisis pregnancies prior to the start of movies because management claims they have received complaints from some moviegoers.
Hawaii raises age of consent
HONOLULU — Hawaii raised the age for sexual consent from 14-years-old to 16 after a campaign by pro-family advocates including the Hawaii Family Forum. The state’s legislature overrode Govenor Ben Cayetano’s veto, the first time the body has ever overridden a governor’s veto. HFF executive director Kelly Rosati said, “Hawaii will no longer be the only state in the nation where adults are legally free to have so-called consensual sex with middle-school students.”