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Friday, July 31, 2015

White House records reveal baby parts harvester Planned Parenthood cozy with Obamas

A US president meets thousands of people, and simply meeting someone who later turns out to be a felon or an embezzler or a crooked lobbyist should not by itself impugn a president's character and values. But when a president, his wife and key staff entertain in the White House a total of 39 times over six years the head of an organization that makes money by ending the lives of and selling the parts of babies, that's cause for concern.
Yesterday when examining the White House's public visitor log, I discovered that the records indicated 39 official visits to the White House by Cecile Richards. Richards heads Planned Parenthood, which, in blunt terms, profits from killing babies in the womb and in turn financially props up politicians who protect and fund their abortion industry.
Planned Parenthood is a billion-dollar (it reports $1.21 billion) "nonprofit" organization that performs nearly a third of a million abortions a year (it reports 327,653 abortions in 2013) and receives half a billion dollars in tax funding (41% of its reported revenue) a year.
Richards' logged White House meetings since September 15, 2009 included nine with President and Mrs. Obama (three with the president only, two with the First Lady only, and four with both together).
Time to clarify the link between the abortion ideology
of the president and Planned Parenthood.
These listed meetings with President and Mrs. Obama would be in addition to any other meetings at which the president and/or first lady also may have been present. It’s not hard to imagine either or both the president and first lady dropping in on one of the listed West Wing meetings with top Obama advisors Valerie Jarrett, Tina Tchen or others.
If you'd like to see the evidence for yourself, check out the searchable records of White House visitors: https://open.whitehouse.gov/dataset/White-House-Visitor-Records-Requests/p86s-ychb 
By way of full disclosure, as a government liaison representing the Christian Medical Association, I've also visited the White House over 30 times, including several visits during the Obama administration. That number of visits alone does not by itself prove immense political influence, but when Cecile Richards' White House visits are coupled with her abortion organization's political campaign contributions and the president's publicly expressed affinity for ("Thank you, Planned Parenthood--God bless you") and commitment to Planned Parenthood, the ideological and political partnership is unmistakable.
This means that whenever you read about or view the physically and morally revolting videos detailing how Planned Parenthood harvests and sells baby parts, you should make the link between the ideology of that abortion organization and this abortion president.
This is where disregard for the sanctity of human life leads.
This morning CNS News broke the story about the Richards White House visits, which hopefully will help Americans recognize the link between the callous baby parts harvesting ideology of Planned Parenthood and the most aggressive abortion-promoting administration in US history.

Planned Parenthood President Made 39 Visits To Obama’s White House Since 2009


By Brittany M. Hughes | July 31, 2015 | 5:02 AM EDT

(CNSNews.com) – Planned Parenthood President Cecile Richards, head of the taxpayer-subsidized abortion giant currently facing a firestorm for allegedly selling body parts harvested from aborted babies, has made personal visits to the White House 39 times since President Barack Obama took office in 2009, White House records show.
According to online records on the White House website, Richards first visited the White House on Jan. 20, 2009 -- the same day Obama first took office. Since then, Richards has met with Obama alone at least three times and First Lady Michelle Obama at least twice. She also met with president and his wife together another four times.

Richards also met four times with David Plouffe, Obama’s senior adviser from 2011 to 2013. Following Plouffe’s resignation in 2013, Richards met with senior adviser Valerie Jarrett five times between mid-2012 and the beginning of 2014. Read more...

Thursday, July 23, 2015

Nearly half US Senate demands investigation of $billion, baby-parts-harvesting Planned Parenthood

Sen. Joni Ernst
One of the US Senators I have the privilege of meeting with on a regular basis, along with other pro-life organization representatives, is Sen. Joni Ernst of Iowa. Sen. Ernst is as winsome as she is courageous, and recently she has taken the lead in the Senate to help bring our nation to its senses regarding abortion.
This week Sen. Ernst and 48 of her Senate colleagues linked hands to demand invesitation of government funding of Planned Parenthood, a billion-dollar "nonprofit" industry that performs roughly a third of a million abortions a year and receives over a third of a billion of our tax dollars. From Sen. Ernst:
July 22, 2015
 
WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senator Joni Ernst (R-IA) led a bipartisan group of 49 of her fellow senators today in a letter to Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Sylvia Burwell following the release of footage by the Center for Medical Progress depicting senior Planned Parenthood Federation of America executives discussing in gruesome detail the organization’s role in the harvesting of the organs of unborn babies. In the letter, the senators draw attention to the legal, ethical, and policy issues raised by the footage and call on HHS Secretary Burwell to cooperate with ongoing and future investigations into these questions.
 
The footage raises a number of questions about the practices of the organization, including whether they are in compliance with federal laws regulating both the use of fetal tissue and partial-birth abortions,” the senators wrote. “In addition to questions about Planned Parenthood’s compliance with applicable federal law and medical ethics, we believe the footage prompts important policy questions surrounding the issue of abortions permitted so late in a pregnancy – sometimes even later than 5 months – that an unborn baby’s organs can be identified and harvested.”  
The senators also requested that the Secretary confirm the commencement or immediate initiation of “a thorough internal review of the compliance of the Department and Planned Parenthood – one of the Department’s grantees – with all relevant and applicable federal statutes, regulations, and other requirements.”
Senator Joni Ernst also added in a statement, “This footage is morally reprehensible, vile, and raises a number of questions that taxpayers deserve answers to. Today, my colleagues and I are calling on HHS to cooperate with all current and future investigations into these shocking allegations. As a defender of life, I remain committed to getting these answers because protecting our most vulnerable is an important measure of any society.”
The full text of the senators’ letter can be found here.
The complete list of the 50 senators who signed the letter:
 
Senator Lamar Alexander

Senator Kelly Ayotte
 
Senator John Barrasso

Senator Roy Blunt

Senator John Boozman

Senator Richard Burr

Senator Shelley Moore Capito

Senator Bill Cassidy

Senator Dan Coats

Senator Thad Cochran

Senator Bob Corker

Senator John Cornyn

Senator Tom Cotton

Senator Mike Crapo

Senator Ted Cruz

Senator Steve Daines

Senator Mike Enzi

Senator Joni Ernst

Senator Deb Fischer

Senator Jeff Flake

Senator Cory Gardner

Senator Lindsey Graham

Senator Orrin Hatch

Senator John Hoeven

Senator Jim Inhofe

Senator Johnny Isakson

Senator Ron Johnson

Senator James Lankford

Senator Mike Lee

Senator Joe Manchin

Senator John McCain

Senator Mitch McConnell

Senator Jerry Moran

Senator Rand Paul

Senator David Perdue

Senator Rob Portman

Senator James Risch

Senator Pat Roberts

Senator Mike Rounds

Senator Marco Rubio

Senator Ben Sasse

Senator Tim Scott

Senator Jeff Sessions

Senator Richard Shelby

Senator Dan Sullivan

Senator John Thune

Senator Thom Tillis

Senator Pat Toomey

Senator David Vitter

Senator Roger Wicker  
  
# # #

 

Faith Steps excerpt: As nation focuses on inhumanity of baby body parts harvesting, we maintain focus on abortion's harm to women as well

As the nation focuses on the revealing horror of harvesting baby parts for sale by billion-dollar nonprofit Planned Parenthood, we continue to focus on the individual women harmed by abortion. Following is an excerpt from my new book, Faith Steps, which encourages and equips people of faith to engage on controversial public policy issues. From Chapter Ten, Abortion:

Every year in the United States alone, over a million women experience the life-changing trauma of abortion. The issue is a lodestone for public policy battles, but it carries a deep and tragic private and personal impact. Women like Pamela relate a painful story that reflects the personal tragedy experienced by millions of women and men:

When I was 17, I thought I was pregnant and finally told my mom.

She called my dad who said, "Get rid of it or I'm leaving."

She called a friend of hers, a nurse. Next thing I know, I'm at the doctor’s office thinking I'm getting a checkup to see if I am pregnant. And he gives me a shot and tells my mom to bring me back in tomorrow to finish the procedure.

There was no chance to talk, to run away... it was done.

I guess I was just numb. Because I can't remember anything but lying on a table, staring at the ceiling with tears coming out of my eyes, and the nurse saying over and over, "Are you okay?" And me not saying anything.

She told the doctor "Oh, she’s fine–she just won't talk."

I remember my dad driving us there. His name was well-known around the community because of being involved in youth sports. He didn't want to ruin "his name" with a pregnant daughter.

I ended up drinking, doing drugs, sex–I just didn't care.

Later I was married to an abuser and divorced two years later. Found out during that time that the boyfriend who got me pregnant was trying to hire someone to push me down the stairs at school for $500 so I would miscarry.

I later remarried and got pregnant. They thought I miscarried and put me in for a D&C [dilation and curettage, a surgical procedure often performed after a first trimester miscarriage] with a bunch of other girls getting abortions, laughing and joking about it. Well I ended up in an emergency room and it was a tubal pregnancy which they removed.

Felt this was my punishment.

Got divorced and later remarried. Had another emergency surgery on my other tube that was twisted and full of cysts. So I no longer could have children.

I'm 52 and have never had a day where I haven't felt guilt.

I was raised in a very Catholic environment, so as I got older it was hard to understand how my parents could make this choice. Granted, my mother still to this day apologizes and says it is the biggest regret. And I end up trying to make her feel better. I guess I have forgiven them and myself.

But it’s just a pain that never goes away.

My heart breaks for those getting abortions because they don't realize the effect it will have, if not now, then later. The one thing that keeps me going (though I did try suicide and by the grace of God the doctors brought me back after my heart stopped twice) is knowing I will see Anthony and Joseph someday.

I had I guess what you could call "The Light" moment when I was lying on the table when they were pumping my stomach. Jesus was standing there next to me with a white robe, and the hood was over his face.

He said, "This is who you need to love.” I expected to see His face. When I looked over, it was my face.

I'm still in a marriage that is...well, we're married. He could care less about kids, so it’s not an issue. I would have liked to adopt but never felt worthy. Now it’s not even an option in my situation. So I'm just patiently waiting with my ‘pet’ kids to see my children someday.

I am now 52 and still cry about it.

I could go on and on about the messed up life I've had, but that just is expected with such guilt-ridden feelings.

I'm still healing and will be till the day I die.[1]

Abortion as empowerment?


The reality experienced by Pamela and many others who account for the over 55 million abortions since the legalization of abortion in the United States[2] hardly matches the picture portrayed by the abortion industry. That savvy and well-financed industry has peddled abortion as a sterile medical procedure that simply excises a "blob of tissue."

Abortion ideologues also hail abortion as a socioeconomic tool, a cornerstone of women's rights and progress. The early women's rights movement advanced the notion that preventing babies through contraceptives and abortion holds the key to women's independence, economic advancement and empowerment.

Kate Michelman, president emerita of the abortion group, NARAL Pro-Choice America, explained in a 2013 USA Today column marking Roe's 40th anniversary,

The goal of Roe v. Wade was to ensure a woman's right to control the most intimate aspect of her life. Without this right, women are unable to participate equally with men in the nation's social, political and economic life.[3]

That would be news, of course, to the millions of women who have had children while also making meaningful contributions to society, politics and professional enterprises.

Yet the Supreme Court in its 1973 Roe v. Wade decision accommodated the view of empowering women through the death of their babies, inventing a "constitutional right to privacy" where none had previously existed. The Court's unilateral and legally inventive decision abridged the right to life, expressed in the Declaration of Independence ("…endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life…") and the US Constitution ("nor shall any State deprive any person of life…"). It also tore decision-making power away from the citizens of individual states and opened the door to nationwide abortion on demand.

The decades-long fight to overturn that unjust decision has included not only public advocacy, but also personal outreach. Thanks to the compassionate work of thousands of pregnancy centers around the country, women who face financial and personal challenges during pregnancy and after giving birth are receiving financial, medical and practical help plus emotional and spiritual support. Young fathers are learning, through pregnancy centers' education, counseling and mentoring, to share in the responsibility and fulfillment of bringing a new life into the world.
Read more: 
Amazon paperback: http://tinyurl.com/nhanq29




Kindle e-book: http://tinyurl.com/p2q8ywg  


[1] Pamela X, testimony on Silent No More website, http://www.silentnomoreawareness.org/testimonies/testimony.aspx?ID=2615, accessed November 22, 2014.
[2] "Roe foes add up 55 million legalized abortions," Washington Times, Jan. 23, 2013. Figures based on Guttmacher Institute reports. http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2013/jan/23/roe-foes-add-up-55-million-legalized-abortions/ Web accessed Jan. 27, 2013.
[3] "'Roe v. Wade' about much more than abortion," Kate Michelman and Carol Tracy, USA Today, Jan. 22, 2013. http://www.usatoday.com/story/opinion/2013/01/21/roe-v-wade-about-much-more-than-abortion-column/1852701/ Accessed Jan. 23, 2013.

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Congress eyes baby-harvester Planned Parenthood's mult-million-dollar tax subsidies

Rep. Diane Black
Planned Parenthood is a billion-dollar "nonprofit" mega-business that performs roughly a third of a million abortions each year and gets about a third of a million dollars in your and my tax dollars each year. Think about those three stats every time you hear Planned Parenthood mentioned, as it has been over the past few days after revelations of horrific practices involving the harvesting and sale of baby body parts.
Yesterday, Congressman Black (R-TN) and 80 original cosponsors introduced H.R. 3134, the Defund Planned Parenthood Act of 2015, which would immediately halt all sources of Federal funding to Planned Parenthood and its affiliates for a one-year period. For more information please see the press release provided by Rep. Black’s office.
Last night Congressman Sean Duffy (R-WI) hosted a special order on the developing revelations regarding Planned Parenthood’s involvement in the sale of organs and tissue from unborn children. Rep. Trent Franks (R-AZ) hosted an additional half hour to accommodate all the Members who wished to speak on this topic. A list of video clips from the special order is below.

Member video from the special order:

Rep. Sean Duffy (R-WI), opening and closing


























Friday, June 26, 2015

Faith Steps excerpt: How to lovingly and reasonably communicate in public the rationale for valuing true marriage

Given today's Supreme Court ruling on marriage, below is an excerpt from Faith Steps, Chapter 14, "Freedom of Faith, Conscience and Speech":
While many followers of Christ draw from Scripture the concept of marriage as solely between a man and a woman, secular governments for centuries also have advanced such conjugal marriage because of its benefits to children, the economy[1] and social stability.[2]
Unfortunately, the modern debate over marriage often has been marked by more passion than reason, with relationships and reputations suffering as a result. Some who name the Name of Christ unfortunately have violated the highest tenets of our faith by showing only disgust and not love for those who practice homosexuality. This fuels a public misperception that all opponents of same-sex marriage are hateful bigots.
Other believers do show love toward homosexuals yet remain unpracticed in presenting rational arguments for a secular audience in the public square. They feel at a loss to cogently defend what they know is a cornerstone of biblical teaching–namely, that sex is reserved for the marriage of a man and a woman. So they just accept same-sex marriage even though it counters what they know true marriage to be.
Believers, however, need not take either a position of bigotry or of defeatism regarding marriage. We can communicate love and simultaneously advocate for the truth about marriage.
A public message advocating for conjugal marriage might sound something like this:
We love and respect those who practice homosexuality and support policies that protect their dignity and appropriate[3] equal protection under the law. But marriage remains a consensual, exclusive and lifelong commitment between one man and one woman, expressed in a physical union uniquely designed to produce and nurture children.
Removing these objective defining factors makes marriage meaningless. By uprooting and replacing the definition of marriage with a subjective notion based on emotional relationship, divorced from the natural and objective marital elements of physical union and procreation, no rational parameters remain that would exclude further redefinitions of "marriage" as between multiple partners, related persons, or even persons and non-persons.
An affirmation of the exclusivity of marriage as between one man and one woman does not preclude separate personal, societal or legal sanction of any other consensual relationship. The core debate hinges not on a moral evaluation of various types of relationships, but rather on the objective qualities that make marriage, marriage.
Even those who lovingly and reasonably communicate in public the rationale for valuing conjugal marriage, however, face an incredibly harsh and judgmental reaction from activists, the media, politicians and other segments of society. We technically may still live in a democracy, but the intolerance of divergent views often seems more akin to a totalitarian state that systematically erases ideological diversity.
The drive toward ideological conformity looks like this:
1.      First the culture makes a controversial practice socially acceptable.
2.      Then policy makers and the courts make the practice legal.
3.      Finally, the culture and the government join to enforce the practice–including punishing objectors.[4]
With that in mind, consider urging your legislators to protect our First Amendment freedoms of thought and belief, by quickly passing legislation to protect conscientious dissenters from discrimination regarding marriage. We urgently need to pass the federal First Amendment Defense Act.
Read more: 
Amazon paperback: http://tinyurl.com/nhanq29




Kindle e-book: http://tinyurl.com/p2q8ywg  

[1] See, for example, Patrick Fagan, “The Wealth of Nations Depends on the Health of Families,” Public Discourse, February 6, 2013, http://www.thepublicdiscourse.com/2013/02/7821/, accessed July 10, 2014.
[2] For a thorough discussion of these characteristics, see Sherif Girgis, Ryan T Anderson and Robert P George, What Is Marriage? Man and Woman: A Defense (New York: Encounter Books, 2012).
[3] The word "appropriate" indicates that equal protection under the law means that while the law must be applied without unjust bias, that does not mean that every law must apply to everyone in exactly the same way. A law pertaining to pregnancy will not apply to everyone because by definition, the state of pregnancy can only apply to women. A law pertaining to American citizens, such as the guarantee of a trial by a jury of peers, does not apply to enemy combatants.
[4] For example, the women's movement and other cultural forces made abortion acceptable. The Supreme Court made it legal in its 1973 Roe v. Wade decision. The Obama administration enforced the practice and punished objectors through federal agency policies.

Monday, June 22, 2015

Faith Steps excerpt: A personal journey--existential angst and the Strange Book

Part V in a series of excerpts from my new book, Faith Steps, which encourages and equips people of faith to engage with friends and in the public arena on vital issues.
From Chapter Four, A Personal Journey:
The cultural revolution of the 1960's, launched during the tumult of the Vietnam War and fed by radical ideology and drugs, had shaken the traditional American foundations of faith, morality and even reality itself. It hadn't taken much, it seemed, to strip the nation of its religious facade, revealing superficial beliefs ungrounded in Scripture and a cultural religion that had drifted far away from the living God.
No one, as far as I could discern, seemed to come even close to offering any real answers to the meaning of life, the nature of man or the existence of a Creator.
Haight Ashbury hippies turned out to be better at turning on to drugs than offering any substantive alternatives to the American capitalism they simultaneously despised and depended upon. My parents' generation had won World War II and provided wonderfully for their families, but many couldn't muster much meaning in life beyond financial security. So their children, wise to their parents' emptiness and hypocrisy but not to their own, traipsed off into Zen, LSD and Woodstock.
American political leaders had launched a successful race to the moon and built an unrivaled economy but then violated the public trust with moral lapses and bungled burglaries. Mainline religious leaders had long since lost the biblical moorings for faith and taken to mumbling a social gospel that eschewed spiritual life for the latest hip political ideology. Educators were trading traditional scholastic disciplines for subjective, "relevant" explorations–like the high school course I took on Rock and Roll.
I found the silence of meaning terrifying.

Good News / Strange News

In desperation, I took up reading a paperback copy of Good News for Modern Man–a loose, modern translation of the New Testament. I would read passages for a while but could only take so much of what struck me as bewildering, even bizarre.
I was looking to plant my feet on firm ground, not float off into spooky spiritualism. Angels and demons, prophecies and parables. That stuff practically made me shiver.
Yet after a time, for some reason, I would once again delve into the pages of the Strange Book....
Read more: 
Amazon paperback: http://tinyurl.com/nhanq29




Kindle e-book: http://tinyurl.com/p2q8ywg  

Friday, June 12, 2015

Faith Steps: How can we move toward God through personal and public policy choices?

Part IV in a series of excerpts from my new book, Faith Steps, which encourages and equips people of faith to engage with friends and in the public arena on vital issues.
From Chapter Three, Faith Steps--Moving Toward God:

Defiance leads to alienation but compliance leads to relationship

The good news is found in a silver lining in the cloud of rejected revelation. Consider carefully this unspoken corollary of the process of revelation and response outlined in Romans:
If we respond to God's revelation through nature and conscience  by making moral choices aligned with His creation and His law,  our thinking begins to align with God's principles and our hearts soften toward Him.
Perhaps a husband resists an adulterous temptation and devotes himself to loving his wife. A woman sacrificially cares for her elderly mother who suffers from Alzheimer's. A teenager makes a culture-challenging personal decision to save sex for marriage.
As individuals make choices aligned with God's principles, they step closer toward divine relationship and their providential purpose. Our gears mesh when aligned with our Maker's blueprint, yielding peace, satisfaction and fulfillment.
Conversely, when we make choices opposed to our Maker's principles, we experience negative results such as failure, loneliness and conflict. We cannot find peace, satisfaction and fulfillment. Adultery shatters marriages and families. Enmity with parents removes the crucial emotional support children need. Teenage sex results in emotional scars, disease and crisis pregnancies.
Each moral decision we make and action we take–to acknowledge God or not, to choose good or evil–either draws us closer to God or drives us farther from Him.
Faith steps are the moral choices we make
and actions we take toward God,
as we respond to His revelation
 and invitation.
A discerning and open individual will perceive readily the difference that moral choices make and the fruit they produce in his or her life. Such experience can begin to train the mind and conscience in the direction of God and His principles, as we learn through experience to choose the path that yields the best result.

Read more: 

Amazon paperback: http://tinyurl.com/nhanq29




Kindle e-book: http://tinyurl.com/p2q8ywg