EDITORIALS; A Great American and a Great Pro-Lifer."With an unshakable faith in the values of our country and the character of our people, Ronald Reagan renewed America's confidence and restored our Nation. His optimism, strength, and humility epitomized the American spirit. He always told us that for America the best was yet to come."
President George W. Bush, on the passing of President Ronald Reagan, June 5
In a real sense, it is, of course, patently unfair to include the likes of Senators John Kerry Editing of this page by unregistered or newly registered users is currently disabled due to vandalism. and John Edwards This article or section contains information about one or more candidates in an upcoming or ongoing election.
Content may change as the election approaches. in remarks dedicated to the memory of one of the great Presidents of the 20th century. But a comparison became not only apt but unavoidable when the militantly pro-abortion Kerry told us barely a month after Ronald Reagan's death that he, Kerry, believes that "life begins at conception," and when he chose as his running mate running mate
1. The candidate or nominee for the lesser of two closely associated political offices.
2. A companion.
3. A horse used to set the pace in a race for another horse. an equally enthusiastic abortion supporter, who won one of his first big cases as a personal injury lawyer partly by "channeling" the unborn.
But first, words of praise for the Gipper.
Early on that Saturday morning, my wife and I were working when we heard the sad news that former President Reagan's health had taken a dramatic turn for the worse. Within a couple of hours, we learned that Mr. Reagan was near death. When Fox News broke in on one of its very moving 60th anniversary of D-Day profiles, we knew instantly that a great American had died.
Tributes to the man came from around the world, including from many who opposed everything President Reagan stood for. In spite of immense policy differences, these oft-times bitter critics admired a man who stood on principle, who brought this nation back from the brink Back from the Brink can refer to:
Mr. Reagan's second term ended in 1988. As we know, he wrestled valiantly with Alzheimer's for the last 10 years of his life. Having left office 16 years ago, it's not surprising that Mr. Reagan's many contributions to the cause of life are not well known even to many pro-lifers. But they were immense and must not be forgotten.
For starters, Mr. Reagan wrote a book, Abortion and the Conscience of a Nation, the first book ever written by a President while in office. (President Reagan's book can be purchased at www.californiaprolife.org/reagan/reagan.htm.)
He also announced the "Mexico City Policy The Mexico City Policy is a United States government policy which limits the eligibility for federal funding to non-governmental organizations (NGOs) which provide or promote services related to abortion. ," which banned U.S. funding of private organizations that perform abortions or work to legalize le·gal·ize
tr.v. le·gal·ized, le·gal·iz·ing, le·gal·iz·es
To make legal or lawful; authorize or sanction by law.
le abortion in foreign countries, and filed a friend-of-the-court brief urging the Supreme Court to overturn Roe v. Wade Roe v. Wade, case decided in 1973 by the U.S. Supreme Court. Along with Doe v. Bolton, this decision legalized abortion in the first trimester of pregnancy. .
Not as well known is that Mr. Reagan instituted policies prohibiting the funding of experimentation on unborn children. He supported congressional efforts to limit funding of abortions. And he worked to enforce congressional directives to prevent so-called "family planning family planning
Use of measures designed to regulate the number and spacing of children within a family, largely to curb population growth and ensure each family’s access to limited resources. " programs from advocating abortion as a means of birth control as part of Title X.
But the blistering heat he took on abortion was like a cool breeze compared to the hysteria that greeted Mr. Reagan's valiant, tenacious battle against infanticide infanticide (ĭnfăn`təsīd) [Lat.,=child murder], the putting to death of the newborn with the consent of the parent, family, or community. Infanticide often occurs among peoples whose food supply is insecure (e.g. . In the tragic 1982 "BabyDoe" case, a newborn child was starved to death because the little one was born with Down syndrome Down syndrome, congenital disorder characterized by mild to severe mental retardation, slow physical development, and characteristic physical features. Down syndrome affects about 1 in every 730 live births and occurs in all populations equally. .
The President sprang to action, and an all-out war was fought over whether facilities receiving federal dollars could discriminate against babies born with disabilities.
Only the Medical Establishment's response rivaled the editorial pages of the "mainstream media" for sheer vituperation. But Reagan persevered, to his eternal credit, in his battle to protect infants born with handicaps from lethal neglect.
One of his pro-life initiatives was clearly ahead of its time. When the Unborn Child Pain Awareness Act was recently introduced, the immediate inspiration was the devastating dev·as·tate
tr.v. dev·as·tat·ed, dev·as·tat·ing, dev·as·tates
1. To lay waste; destroy.
2. To overwhelm; confound; stun: was devastated by the rude remark. testimony given at trials challenging the constitutionality of the ban on partial-birth abortions. The abortionists' casual indifference to the brutality of such an obscene act of violence is enough to send chills up and down your spine.
Some seemed genuinely offended by the very idea that the foremost authority on pain in the fetus and newborn baby would be allowed to testify. When he did, Dr. Kanwaljeet Anand testified that partial-birth abortions would cause "severe and excruciating pain" to fetuses 20 weeks and older.
But Reagan had foreshadowed the whole issue of fetal pain 20 years before. In a January 30, 1984, speech to the convention of the National Religious Broadcasters, Mr. Reagan said, "Medical science doctors confirm that when the lives of the unborn are snuffed out [by an abortion], they often feel pain - - pain that is long and agonizing."
President Reagan's genius was an uncanny capacity for cutting through superficialities to get to the core questions. Mr. Reagan demonstrated that the abortion fight is not over when life begins - - that was old hat even then; everyone understood that human life begins at conception - - but what value we place on that vulnerable life.
Compare that genuine moral conviction with the sheer bunkum bun·kum also bun·combe
Empty or insincere talk; claptrap.
[After Buncombe, a county of western North Carolina, from a remark made around 1820 by its congressman, who felt obligated to and blatant insincerity in·sin·cere
Not sincere; hypocritical.
insin·cerely adv. on that same topic that came out of Sen. Kerry's mouth last month. Kerry had the gall to tell a Midwest reporter, "I oppose abortion, personally," adding, "I don't like abortion. I believe life does begin at conception."
So why isn't he a pro-life supporter? "But I can't take my Catholic belief, my article of faith, and legislate it on a Protestant or a Jew or an atheist ... who doesn't share it. We have separation of church and state in the United States The separation of church and state is a legal and political principle derived from the First Amendment to the United States Constitution, which reads, "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof . . . of America."
How convenient. After a lifetime, Sen. Kerry pretends not to understand that the most eloquent explicators of the Catholic Church's opposition to abortion ground it in the truism that respect for life transcends the particularities of any given faith.
The Pope would be the first to happily say that respect for unborn life is not the exclusive province of Catholicism, but akin to opposition to rape, child abuse, or murder. All are objectively wrong, not because Lutherans or Methodists or Jews or Catholics say they are.
Not surprisingly, Kerry selected as his right hand man someone as comfortable with actively supporting abortion today, tomorrow, and forever as he is. That was one litmus test litmus test
A test for chemical acidity or basicity using litmus paper. John Edwards passed with flying colors.
In the first couple of days, many people commented about a very telling experience from early in Edwards' career as a personal injury lawyer, oddly enough based on a story that appeared last January in the New York New York, state, United States
New York, Middle Atlantic state of the United States. It is bordered by Vermont, Massachusetts, Connecticut, and the Atlantic Ocean (E), New Jersey and Pennsylvania (S), Lakes Erie and Ontario and the Canadian province of Times. Here are the operative paragraphs:
In 1985, a 31-year-old North Carolina North Carolina, state in the SE United States. It is bordered by the Atlantic Ocean (E), South Carolina and Georgia (S), Tennessee (W), and Virginia (N). Facts and Figures
Area, 52,586 sq mi (136,198 sq km). Pop. lawyer named John Edwards stood before a jury and channeled the words of an unborn baby girl.
"Referring to an hour-by-hour record of a fetal heartbeat monitor, Mr. Edwards told the jury: `She said at 3, `I'm fine.' She said at 4, `I'm having a little trouble, but I'm doing O.K.' Five, she said, `I'm having problems.' At 5:30, she said, `I need out.' "
But the obstetrician obstetrician /ob·ste·tri·cian/ (ob?ste-trish´in) one who practices obstetrics.
A physician who specializes in obstetrics. , he argued in an artful blend of science and passion, failed to heed the call. By waiting 90 more minutes to perform a breech delivery breech delivery
Delivery of a fetus with the buttocks or feet appearing first. Also called breech birth.
breech delivery Obstetrics Extraction or expulsion of the fetus feet or buttocks first , rather than immediately performing a Caesarean section caesarean section: see cesarean section. , Mr. Edwards said, the doctor permanently damaged the girl's brain.
As James Taranto of the Wall Street Journal observed, "At the vice-presidential debate this fall, someone should ask Sen. Edwards to demonstrate this technique by channeling the words of an unborn baby about to undergo a partial-birth abortion."
It has been said that, in many ways, President George W. Bush is Reagan's political heir. Even ultra-hostile critics like then-New York Times columnist (and now executive editor) Bill Keller acknowledge that "there are important similarities of character and temperament" and policy so startling star·tle
v. star·tled, star·tling, star·tles
1. To cause to make a quick involuntary movement or start.
2. To alarm, frighten, or surprise suddenly. See Synonyms at frighten. that "We seem...to be witnessing the third term of the Reagan presidency...."
For us, the most important continuity is in Mr. Bush's devotion to the cause of unborn babies. People around this office have known him for years. They knew from the very beginning, Mr. Bush was with us. He was, and he is.
Unfortunately, those who work day and night to win the public relations public relations, activities and policies used to create public interest in a person, idea, product, institution, or business establishment. By its nature, public relations is devoted to serving particular interests by presenting them to the public in the most war over stem cell stem cell
In living organisms, an undifferentiated cell that can produce other cells that eventually make up specialized tissues and organs. There are two major types of stem cells, embryonic and adult. research based on lethal extraction from embryos have shamelessly enrolled Mr. Reagan's widow in a campaign to win federal funding. They hold out the hope that such research could produce a cure for Alzheimer's.
The truth is, as even many researchers admit, this is a "fairy tale." There is virtually zero chance that stem cell research would help in the case of Alzheimer's. More to the point, as William Clark wrote in the New York Times, Mr. Reagan would never have agreed. (The op-ed is reprinted on page 25.)
As the first unabashedly un·a·bashed
1. Not disconcerted or embarrassed; poised.
2. Not concealed or disguised; obvious: unabashed disgust. pro-life President, Mr. Reagan's contributions were immense, and that included bolstering our confidence that one day we would prevail. Using the tools of modern medicine and science, augmented by an informed heart, he chiseled chis·eled or chis·elled
Made or shaped with or as if with a chisel: a finely chiseled nose.
Adj. 1. away at the foundations of abortion and infanticide.
No last words I could offer could compare to the eloquent conclusion of President Reagan's book. Referring to William Wilberforce, who worked for decades to end slavery in the British empire, Mr. Reagan wrote this:
"Let his faith and perseverance be our guide. We will never recognize the true value of our own lives until we affirm the value in the life of others, a value of which Malcolm Muggeridge says: `... however low it flickers or fiercely burns, it is still a Divine flame which no man dare presume to put out, be his motives ever so humane and enlightened.'
"Abraham Lincoln recognized that we could not survive as a free land when some men could decide that others were not fit to be free and should therefore be slaves. Likewise, we cannot survive as a free nation when some men decide that others are not fit to live and should be abandoned to abortion or infanticide. My Administration is dedicated to the preservation of America as a free land, and there is no cause more important for preserving that freedom than affirming the transcendent right to life of all human beings, the right without which no other rights have any meaning."
Good bye, Mr. President, and God bless you for all that you did for the littlest Americans.
[A week-long series on President Reagan and his influence on abortion and infanticide ran in "Today's News & Views" June 7-14. TN&V can be found at www.nrlc.org.]