Shedding of Innocent Blood vs Guilty Blood

In California, last year, we had a petition drive at our church to abolish the death penalty in the state.  The people pushing this petition were those of whom I would refer as the “social justice” crowd.  These people, to a large extent, are very anti-death penalty but when it comes to abortion, they don’t even blink, or totally ignore it.  They are also on the very liberal side and vote for liberal or progressive politicians who are very pro-abortion.  This week the state of Arkansas executed two inmates on death row; for the first time in 12 years. As a pro-life person, it is always puzzling to reconcile this situation.  How can someone be against the death penalty and yet ignore abortion.  Let’s look at the statistics.  As of 2014 there have been over 57 million abortions since 1973 in the United States, that’s roughly 1.3 million per year average.  Since 1976 there have been 1,300 executions of death row inmates in the entire United States.

Death row inmates are guilty persons who have committed crimes against humanity and have been adjudicated by a court to be guilty and have been so condemned.  The unborn, on the other hand, are totally innocent and have been killed, not by a court, but by a mother who does not wish to have a baby for reasons such as “I’m not ready to be a mother,” or “it’s too inconvenient and it will interfere with my career.”  The unborn are fully human, as confirmed by science.  Click here for confirmation.    Have you seen drawings or pictures of how unborn children are ripped apart inside the mother?  Abortion doctors count all the limbs after an abortion to make sure they got the entire baby.  In the famous case of Dr. Kermit Gosnell in Philadelphia, he even killed babies who came out whole in a botched abortion attempt.  The book, Gosnell, details what happened in excruciating details; you must read it to believe it.

The Bible is very specific when it come to shedding innocent blood:  Proverbs 6:16-19

There are six things that the Lord hates, seven that are an abomination to him: haughty eyes, a lying tongue, and hands that shed innocent blood, a heart that devises wicked plans, feet that make haste to run to evil, a false witness who breathes out lies, and one who sows discord among brothers.

 

Fetal Tissue Research and Defunding Planned Parenthood

With the new Trump administration there is a push to defund Planned Parenthood (PP).  This is now a hot issue.  An article in Forbes Magazine by Matthew Herper, dated August 12, 2015, titled The New England Journal of Medicine Fact-Checks the Republican Debate, the journal’s editors attack the pro-life Republican platform and especially the defunding of PP.   The article points out that the NEJM is a noted leftist organization: “its not news that the New England Journal tends to be left-leaning.”  This article and the piece below by Alta Charo are worth reading because they discuss important issues which are easily misunderstood by the general population and need a vigorous debate.

The opinion piece by Alta Charo, titled Fetal Tissue Fallout, makes some important points that need to be discussed and debated.  Charo argues that it is morally wrong to oppose fetal tissue research because, she claims, it does not increase abortions, and it provides massive dividends that save lives. Charo is a lawyer and a bioethicist at the University of Wisconsin, according to the Herper article.  I wonder why a lawyer is writing an editorial in a medical journal. Could it be that the best doctors are embarrassed to do it, or perhaps they could not find one to do it? Just asking!

I agree, there is a strong argument to be made for fetal tissue research, however, the killing of an innocent human being is never moral under any circumstances.  This is a first order issue.  What is legal is not always moral; abortion is one such example. My argument is not against fetal tissue research, it’s against the killing of an innocent human being.  Fetal tissue research is not a hot button issue with the pro-life cause; I don’t know anyone who opposes it.  Has any Republican made any statement against fetal tissue research?  I’ve never heard one yet.  What we oppose is the killing of an innocent human life, not fetal tissue research.  Let’s look at it this way.  Let’s say I’m a scientist and you have a condition that may lead me to discover a cure for a certain disease, but in order for me to get what I must have for my research, I need to kill you first and then rummage through your cadaver for my research.  Would this be acceptable? Let’s further say that I find a cure for a certain condition, would this, then, lead us to conclude we can kill living human beings in order to find cures?  When we treat human life as disposable, we lose any sense of human dignity; we’re no different from animals.

Another question is whether fetal tissue can only be obtained from aborted babies. How many fetuses die in birth, or soon thereafter or from accidents.  How about still-born babies?  In the United States there are 25,000 babies  still-born per year; nearly 68 per day.  Are aborted babies the only way to get fetal tissue? Charo’s argument fails completely. As for using aborted babies for fetal tissue research, I agree there is an argument to be made, but I will leave this specific issue for another time.  Let ‘s continue with some of her other claims:

Charo argues that fetal research is not only a right but a duty.  The article blasts those who oppose fetal tissue research.  “Morality and conscience have been cited to justify not only health care professionals’ refusal to provide certain legal medical services to their patients but even obstruction of others’ fulfillment of that duty.  She does not say it, but I assume from her tone here that she puts all abortion opponents in the same basket as opponents of fetal tissue research.  Charo makes the claim that fetal research “will in no way actually affect the number of fetuses that are aborted or brought to term.”  She provides no proof or back-up for this claim.  How does she know this?  A claim such as this violates the Universal Principle of Reason. According to this principle, anything arbitrarily asserted without evidence can be arbitrarily denied without evidence.* In addition, what difference does it make whether it affects the number of abortions or not? So what? This does not support her argument.

Charo’s article blasts the researcher who exposed the sale of fetal body parts from aborted babies by PP.  She makes this statement: “The current uproar was invited when an antiabortion activist, posing as a biomedical research company representative, captured on video – which he then edited in the most misleading way possible – discussions by Planned Parenthood physicians.”  Here we go again.  How does Charo justify making this statement?  Another arbitrary  asserted claim. How does editing the video affect the content or make it misleading?  She provides no examples.  Were the people on the video fed what they said as in a movie script? There was probably dozens of hours of video, of course it had to be edited.  How does the editing change what we see PP executives saying?  Here is one of these videos, how does editing change what you see and hear in it?  A claim arbitrarily made and arbitrarily deniable.

I could not get past page one without encountering so many subjective allegations without any evidence. The bottom paragraph of page one says this: “Planned Parenthood services – more than 95% of which involve such things as contraception and screening for sexually transmitted diseases, rather than abortion.”  This is a very misleading statistic.  How did they calculate it?  When I took statistics in college the instructor had a saying, “statistics don’t lie but liars can figure.”  Here are some facts: Planned Parenthood does 30% of the nation’s abortions – over 320,000 per year.  They receive over $500 million in tax payer funds from the government each year.  Planned Parenthood claims that only 3% of their services are for abortions. Click here for an article debunking this.  In addition, the Washington Post, no conservative newspaper, added another piece debunking this 3% myth.  Click here for the article.

*Ten Universal Principles; A Brief Philosophy of the Life Issues, Robert J. Spitzer, S.J., Ph.D, Ignatius Press, 2011, pp 7&16:

They Did What Was Right in Their Own Eyes

Abortion was  a more prominent topic in our recent Presidential election.  In the third debate the question of “partial birth abortion” was discussed between Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton.  Trump decried how a baby could be aborted just before birth, while Clinton praised a “woman’s choice.”  She did not defend her position favoring this procedure. Click here for more details on this.

In the election of 2008 my friend told me the story of how his neighbor, a fellow Catholic from his church, could support John Kerry  who was fiercely pro abortion.  His neighbor’s response was “there are many other issues.”  This response is very typical of liberal Catholics and Christians of all faiths who favor abortion.  Indeed, to my estimation, at least 50% of my fellow Catholics at my church favor abortion at any stage, contrary to what the Catholic Church emphatically teaches.

When it comes to elections, pro-life citizens of which I am one, believe that anyone who favors abortion is automatically disqualified for any elective position in our country.  Let me give an example:  Let’s say that there is a candidate who has all the positions that you hold, as well as your world view, and he/she would be ideal for the position, but this person favors the killing of babies even after they’re born, as Peter Singer does, the famous Professor of Bio-Ethics at Princeton University.  Singer says that a baby is unaware of its own existence and therefore can be killed upon the decision of the parents within the first couple of months after birth.  Would you still vote for this person? How about a person who has all of your world view but favors the enslavement of a certain ethnic group, such as was the case prior to the Civil War?  Would this person not be disqualified for elective office?

Catholics will often tell you that they rely on their conscience to make moral decisions and they will further argue that this is supported by the Catholic Church.  Well, they’re partly right.  The Catholic Church does allow for conscience in some instances, but it must be an informed conscience, not just whatever your conscience tells you at any moment.  The Church, in no uncertain terms, condemns abortion. The Church further states that cooperation with abortion is a grave sin, meaning that if you vote for a pro-abortion politician, you are cooperating with abortion.  So if the Church emphatically states that abortion is evil and the killing of a human being, your conscience cannot overrule this. This is not an informed conscience.  If your conscience could overrule this, then why do you need a church to guide your morality, or the Bible for that matter.  All you would need is your conscience.

In the book of Judges in the Bible, the Israelites had fallen completely away from God and had given in to immorality.  By the time of the last judge of Israel, Samson, they had fallen so far from God that verse 6 of Judges 17 states: In those days Israel had no king; everyone did as they saw fit.  To support abortion or to cooperate in abortion by voting for a person who does is doing what is right in your own eye.

The Vestibule of Hell

In my Bible study class today, our teacher, Dr. Bill Creasy, was teaching on the Gospel of John and on Jesus’ trial by Pontius Pilate.   Pilate tried very hard to save Jesus but he got no cooperation from him.  In the end Pilate gave in to the mob, refused to do the right thing and gave him up to be crucified.   The question often is asked:  what happened to Pilate later?  Dante’s Devine Comedy, Canto 3:49-60 has a helpful hint; as summarized by Creasy:

In the Divine Comedy, Dante places Pontius Pilate not in Hell proper, but in the vestibule of Hell. Rejected by God and not accepted by Satan, he is among those who are “nowhere,” those cowardly souls who refused to make a choice in life or to stand up for what is right.

I could not help but think of those of us who are too cowardly to make the right decision when it comes to the killing of the unborn babies.  Specifically, Vice President Biden, comes to mind when he made the statement that he believes what the Catholic Church believes that life begins at conception but he is not going to “impose his faith on others,” or words to this effect. Click here for verification of this.  This position strikes me as the same as what Pilate did:  In the face of truth, cowardice takes over.

I cannot help but think what will Joe Biden do when he’s face to face with our eternal judge and is asked the same question.  Will he give the same answer?  Joe is not alone in this he has many others who believe as he does.

Assisted Suicide and the Culture of Death

California has become the fourth state in the nation to legalize assisted suicide, joining Vermont, Oregon and Washington.  The culture of death has slowly gained acceptance in our culture, in large part, to how it is being presented.  The advocates of assisted suicide call it “death with dignity,” “compassionate choices” and the like.  This is another frontal attack on the dignity of life, whether in the womb or in old age.  Since this is a huge subject.  I will not address why this so wrong.  I want to point out one more ominous development that has happened in California:  The fact that 23 left wing Democrats decided for 30 + million people on matters of life and death instead of putting this huge decision to the voters.  California voters have rejected this type of law no less than six times in the past 20 years. This is pure tyranny, no matter where you stand on this issue.  This should scare you whether you’re a Democrat or a Republican.

A Referendum, supported by the Catholic Church and other organizations, is currently being circulated to take this issue to the voters, as it should, in November 2016.  Our church is circulating this this coming weekend.

Planned Parenthood and the Left: An Inconvenient Truth

The recent Planned Parenthood undercover videos have provided a venue for a discussion that the leftist media does not want to have:  The horror of abortion.  The videos brought to our living room the truth about abortion.  Is abortion “a woman’s right to choose”? or “women’s health”?  The inescapable videos bring the truth about abortion in front of our eyes.  The killing, by dismemberment, of a human being.  There are people who do not want to see these images.  Why not?  They do not want to admit an inconvenient truth:  Abortion kills a human being in the most brutal way, by dismemberment, limb by limb.   We are horrified by the beheadings by the ISIS killers in the Middle East.   Abortion does the same thing and we call it “women’s health.”  Who are the barbarians?

Leftist politicians, such as Nancy Pelosi, say that the videos are doctored?  doctored?  have they watched any of them in full?  probably not. Click here to hear Ms. Pelosi verify this statement.  So, let me see if I understand this, you have not watched the videos but you think they’re doctored? Do you have any proof of this?  No.  On September 27, 2015, NBC’s “Meet the Press” host, Chuck Todd had Carly Fiorina on.  He thought he would catch her in a misstatement about her comment about Planned Parenthood in the last debate.  You could see he was salivating.  Carly humiliated him in her sharp, clear and concise response.  This is one for the ages.  Click here to see it.

As I was driving today, I saw a person with a bumper sticker on her car saying:  “I’m Catholic, I vote.”  Now this is a very naive person.  The truth of the matter is that Catholics are no different from the general population when it comes to voting on moral issues.  Democrats would never win an election if all Catholics voted according to church teaching, such as the sanctity of life and the importance of traditional marriage,    The sad fact is that liberal Catholics are no different from liberal atheists. Catholics, like liberal Christians and Jews, have substituted leftism as their number one religion; traditional religion is always secondary. Click here for an incisive analysis by Dennis Prager  on Joe Biden and leftism.

Human Trafficking: Today’s Slavery

When did slavery end?  No, it was not with Abraham Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation.  Slavery is alive and well today.  You may think that if it’s alive it’s in Africa or some other third world country, as I did, until I heard a talk at our church about human trafficking in Los Angeles.  Human trafficking is happening right in your back yard, except you’ve never seen it.

How does human trafficking work?  Two examples:  A young girl runs away from home; within a few days she will be approached by a human trafficker and groomed.  She will be told that the person talking to her cares for her and that he will take care of her.  With time she will learn to trust this person as her boyfriend who has her interest at heart.  Once she commits to this fellow, he drops the hammer.  He’ll tell her that they can make a huge amount of money in the sex business.  He assures her that he loves her and that sex with others for money is not that bad and it really validates their relationship.  If she objects he will turn to intimidation. He will tell her that if she refuses he will hurt her and her family.   The human trafficking pimps are so good at what they do that they manage to take complete control of the girls by threats of physical and psychological intimidation.  At a recent church human trafficking workshop, an LAPD Lieutenant who is the head the Human Trafficking Division told this story of a young girl they interviewed:  This young girl told her story about how she got enmeshed in this.  The police were able to arrest the pimp and prepare a criminal case against him.  When they went to court the girl refused to testify against the pimp for fear of reprisal.

A second way young girls get involved goes something like this:  A beautiful young woman is working at a department store.  A well dressed gorgeous woman approaches her and tells her that she knows a job she can get her that will pay her way more than she can make at the store.  She tells the young woman that she can pick her up after her shift and take her to her office where she will lay out her case.  The young woman agrees.  At the end of her shift she picks her up in a brand new Mercedes-Benz.  The young lady is now very impressed,  She takes her to her office where she meets this hunk of a young man who just sweeps her off her feet.  This young man then grooms her until she is in.  He then tells her what her real job will be:  sex for money.  If she objects, the threat will come.  Threats of violence both to her and her family.

Here are some facts about human trafficking:

1.  There are an estimated 27 million slaves in the world today, that’s the highest number in history

2  Human trafficking has been identified as the second largest criminal enterprise in the world, second only to drug trafficking.

3.  The United States is one of the top three destination points for human trafficking, with California, Nevada, New York, and Texas as the top states.

4.  According to estimates, 80% of trafficking involves sexual exploitation and 19% labor exploitation.

5.  The average age for of a young woman in human trafficking is now 12 years old.  Click here for more information.

An important point made by the LAPD Lieutenant mentioned earlier:  Victims of human trafficking are NOT prostitutes.  They are victims.  A 12-year old girl does not volunteer to be a sex slave.

Click  here for a 43-minute documentary by CNN called Amber Lyon’s Documentary.

What can we do?  Be informed and inform others.  If you run into anyone involved in human trafficking give them a number they can call for help.  Human Trafficking Hotline:  1-888-3737-888; or contact Zoe at 661-255-7963.

Read the book:  How You can Fight Human Trafficking by Susan Patterson and Through God’s Grace Ministry.  You can buy it on Amazon.com