Policing Our Own

The latest meme in the campaign to paint the broader pro-life movement as complicit in George Tiller’s murder is the fact that the killer, Scott Roeder, made calls to Operation Rescue’s senior policy advisor, Cheryl Sullenger, asking to know Tiller’s court dates.  This, we are told, is supposed to be outrageous because Roeder had previously made ominous comments (which, taken on their own, aren’t all that ominous) on Operation Rescue’s website—as if every individual in an organization is supposed to memorize the names of everyone who comments on their website who could be considered excessively hostile.  Please.

I don’t think much of this line of attack, but there is something else in these reports that should be deeply troubling to pro-lifers.  In 1988, Sullenger was convicted of conspiring to bomb an abortion clinic, for which she served two years in prison.  Operation Rescue’s bio says she’s been active in the movement since 1984, and relocated to Wichita in 2003, but isn’t clear on when she became officially aligned with the group (a question further complicated by OR’s muddy organizational history).

Why did Operation Rescue hire a convicted would-be terrorist?  How could they have not known about her record?  As a matter of moral principle, it’s inexcusable to give credence to someone who’s done what she’s done, and as a matter of political strategy, it’s suicidal idiocy—do they even know who their opponents are?

The current wave of character assassination is deeply dishonest, and the pro-life movement is not a bloodthirsty one (as Mark Crutcher also explains, hat tip to Jill Stanek).  But because we are an honorable, responsible movement, we have to be especially vigilant about true fanatics in our midst.  Operation Rescue is not responsible for George Tiller’s death, but they do have to answer for the employment of Cheryl Sullenger.

A Tale of Two Shootings

Since Barack Obama is one of the most extreme pro-abortion politicians in American history, it came as little surprise that he wasted no time issuing a statement condemning George Tiller’s murder.  It was striking, however, that the commander-in-chief of our armed forces neglected to do the same about the shooting in Little Rock, which claimed the life of one of the very soldiers serving under him, and injured another.

It took him a while, but he’s finally released a statement:

I am deeply saddened by this senseless act of violence against two brave young soldiers who were doing their part to strengthen our armed forces and keep our country safe. I would like to wish Quinton Ezeagwula a speedy recovery, and to offer my condolences and prayers to William Long’s family as they mourn the loss of their son.

It’s nice to hear the president is “deeply saddened,” but you would think that it would have “shocked and outraged” him.  Regardless of this late, halfhearted effort, the damage is done.  Obama’s perverse priorities have been made crystal clear.

Standing Up to Pro-Abortion Persecution (Updated)

Unsurprisingly, the guy campaigning for an even more liberal GOP seems to be taking the side of the demagogues using George Tiller’s murder to savage and silence the pro-life movement.  First, he uncritically links to a Gawker post characterizing Bill O’Reilly’s coverage of the Tiller case as a “holy war” and “jihad.”  Then, he and the rest of New Majority’s editors lend credence to the pro-choice hate campaign, lecturing us that “a broader self-examination is called for if we wish to claim in good conscience that our hands are clean of the next victim’s blood.”

Sorry David, but my conscience is clean.  I’m not going to accept blame for conduct that I’ve always opposed, that I’ve never presented as legitimate, carried out by a man with a history of antigovernment fanaticism and possible mental illness long before he ever saw an episode of The O’Reilly Factor.  I’m not going to pretend abortion isn’t evil just because the Left demands it.

And neither should any other pro-lifers.  This is not the time to cower in a hole and wait for it all to blow over.  Because it will never blow over.  This is what the Left is—hateful, lying, and tyrannical to the core.  Deep down, most of ‘em know better, as my rundown of their blatant double-standards shows.  They will use anything they can do delegitimize challenging speech and destroy those with whom they differ.  Appeasing them (or their enablers like Frum) is an exercise in futility.

Instead, the pro-life movement should be turning the tables on their persecutors, making an issue of how disgraceful it is to blame millions of good-natured Americans for the actions of one man.  The best defense, in this case, is a good offense, aided by the fact that we have the truth on our side.

UPDATE, 7/7/10: The old New Majority links have been fixed.  They now link to the articles at FrumForum.

Horrible: Shooting at an AK Recruiting Office

One American soldier was killed and another injured today, as a man with an assault rifle opened fire on an Army recruiting office in Little Rock, Arkansas.  The murderer is in custody, though his motive has not yet been made public.  Whatever it is, though, he needs to be punished to the full extent of the law.

It makes me sick to think that someone who signs up for the armed services can put himself in harm’s way day after day, and then return to his own home and be murdered by one of the very citizens he was defending.

Please, pray for our fallen hero and his family, as well as for the full recovery of the surviving hero.

Update: Now we know—the shooter was a recent convert to Islam with a grudge against the Army.  Big surprise.

Obama: The Pro-Infanticide Candidate

Covered in my latest letter to the Fond du Lac Reporter:

After an Illinois hospital left a newborn who survived an abortion to starve to death in a closet, the state senate considered legislation protecting the rights of babies born alive during attempted abortions (SB1082) in 2001. Barack Obama opposed it. Now he says he would have voted yes if the bill included language guaranteeing it wouldn’t be used someday to undermine Roe v. Wade.

He’s essentially saying that newborns dying of starvation matters less than the legal standing of Roe, which is horrible enough (remember, reversing Roe would NOT ban abortion—it would just restore the people’s right to vote on abortion policy). But incredibly, the story gets even worse: we now know Obama is lying about his motivations.

In 2003, Illinois lawmakers tried again, now with the very language Obama claims was the original dealbreaker (Senate Amendment 001). At the time, Obama chaired the health committee, which unanimously added the language—only for Obama to vote no anyway, killing it before it reached the senate floor [PDF link]. It shouldn’t surprise us, then, that he recently told Pastor Rick Warren that figuring out when people have human rights was “above his pay grade.”

This is every bit as evil as slavery. It’s shocking that a United States Senator could so callously disregard both his first duty (“to secure these rights, governments are instituted among men”), and basic human decency and compassion—and appalling that a mainstream political party could nominate such a man for the presidency. All Americans—liberal, conservative, and independent—who have any sort of conscience should be utterly disgusted by this man. Obama doesn’t want to heal the sins of the past—he just wants to trade them for brand-new ones in the future.

Aside from his above lie, Obama and his apologists have deployed a full-blown revolving door of excuses for his vote.

They claim Illinois law already had sufficient protections in place for born-alive infants. But that’s not true; the law in question, as Ramesh Ponnuru notes, said only fetuses of “sustainable survivability” would be protected, so any fetus deemed “pre-viable” would not be protected—SB1082 was intended to clear up any ambiguity.

They have argued that there was no evidence what Jill Stanek alleged actually happened. But according to a US House Judiciary Committee report, another Christ Hospital nurse, Allison Baker, gave consistent testimony, and the committee found:

When allegations such as these were first made against Christ Hospital, the hospital claimed that this procedure* was only used ‘‘when doctors determine the fetus has serious problems, such as lack of a brain, that would prevent long-term survival.” Later, however, the hospital changed its position, announcing that although it had performed abortions on infants with non-fatal birth defects, it was changing its policy and would henceforth use the procedure to abort only fatally-deformed infants.

* meaning, as described by the report: ‘‘induced labor’’ or ‘‘live-birth’’ abortions, a procedure in which physicians use drugs to induce premature labor and deliver unborn children, many of whom are sometimes still alive, and then simply allow those who are born alive to die.”

The Illinois Department of Health and Human Services failed to act on the charges not because they thought they weren’t happening, but merely because “abortion procedures” and “the rights of newborns” were beyond the scope of their office.

According to the National Right to Life Committee:

Obama’s defenders now (August 19, 2008) insist that the Illinois Born-Alive Infants Protection Act was not needed because, they claim, Illinois already had a 1975 law “that requires doctors to provide medical care in the very rare case that babies are born alive during abortions.” They fail to mention that the law covered only situations where an abortionist decided before the abortion that there was “a reasonable likelihood of sustained survival of the fetus outside the womb.” Humans are often born alive a month or more before they reach the point where such “sustained survival” — that is, long-term survival — is possible or likely (which is often called the point of “viability”). Moreover, this already-weak law was further weakened by a consent decree issued by a federal court in 1993, which among other things permanently prohibits state officials from enforcing the law’s definitions of “born alive,” “live born,” and “live birth.” To read or download the consent decree, click here.

Obama has also expressed indignation at the implication inherent in the legislation that doctors would ever do such a thing to a newborn. This is an idiotic reason to oppose a law—society makes laws precisely because some people will do wrong; one might as well be offended at speed limits in school zones because they imply a driver would ever drive irresponsibly with children present. But it’s also meaningless because, again, Christ Hospital admitted it, and the Committee report also found evidence of similar incidents elsewhere in the US and in other nations. Clearly, not everyone licensed to practice medicine is a saint.

They say bills Obama opposed had language “clearly threatening Roe.” That language? “A live child born as a result of an abortion shall be fully recognized as a human person and accorded immediate protection under the law” (emphasis added). Come on, nobody with any self-respect can parrot this one with a straight face. It specifically refers to children who have already been born, which is exactly where most pro-choicers tell us they draw the line anyway.

They have also said that “even if the federal and state versions had identical language, they would have very different consequences. The federal government doesn’t have a law regulating abortion, so Congress could pass a ‘born alive’ measure without actually affecting anything. But Illinois has an abortion law that would be muddled by changing the definition of a person with full rights.” Please, do we really have to go over how transparent and stupid this one is?

They claim the bill was part of a package deal which went further, but as NRLC legislative director Douglas Johnson notes, “Obama confuses these bills, which were entirely separate. They had sequential numbers, but they were not in any way linked. To call them a package is a tactic to try to reach out and grab issues in an attempt to divert attention from this one.”

And then, of course, it’s kinda hard to get past what Obama said at the time.

Further coverage:

Jill Stanek’s blog
Life with Obama” and “Life Lies” by David Freddoso
Why Obama Really Voted for Infanticide” by Andrew McCarthy
Dead Weight” by the National Review Editors
Red State
FactCheck.org: Obama and ‘Infanticide’ (though it should be noted that Fact Check does not devote the same level of detail to the claim Illinois already protected newborns as it does to Obama’s dishonesty, which they have confirmed is false)

These will be ignored or decried by the shameless propagandists whose ideological bias is so deep that not even infanticide can reawaken their consciences, but cries of “right-winger” or “theocon fundie” are no substitute for providing and refuting facts.

Facts are stubborn things. The evidence is clear, and the bottom line is this: Barack Obama was presented with the scenario of live, newborn, babies being starved to death by the very doctors who delivered them—and decided the continued possibility of this happening was preferable to a nonexistent threat to the logic of Roe v. Wade.

Catholics & Abortion? – UPDATED

UPDATE: Good news—St. Thomas has backtracked, and Star Parker is set to speak there after all.
Two extremely disturbing stories regarding American Catholics. First, the University of St. Thomas shunned a planned pro-life speech by Star Parker. Ed Morrissey has the details. Second, the following is a column I just received via email from ALL’s Judie Brown:

Just when I thought there might not be anything worthy of a blog post, two news items came to my attention within the short span of five hours; In each case I was appalled at what the facts exposed.

Let me begin in San Francisco, which is one of the most beautiful cities in the world. It is also one of the most salacious. It wasn’t too long ago, last October to be exact, that we read about Archbishop George Niederauer giving the body and blood of Christ in Holy Eucharist to two members of the ‘Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence.’ After several Catholics expressed outrage, the Archbishop
claimed he didn’t notice the garb these two men were wearing when they approached him for the sacrament during the Mass. While his apology was certainly appropriate, his original action boggles my simple little mind.

I almost believed that he had honestly not noticed the outrageous face makeup and costuming worn by the two gay “nuns.” But that was then and this is now.

Just yesterday I learned that when Catholic Charities hosted its annual banquet this past Friday, the Archbishop was scheduled to
present an award to George Marcus, a real estate investment mogul who is a large supporter of Planned Parenthood.

In selecting George Marcus as a 2008 honoree,
Archbishop Niederauer stated, “Through his passion for philanthropy, interfaith collaboration and insistence on making life more beautiful for all people, George M. Marcus is an example of how a single individual can positively impact the lives of many.”
Are we to suspect that the Archbishop simply didn’t know about Marcus’ involvement with the world’s leading promoter of abortion? I think not.
As if this April 11th news was not enough, I also learned that a coalition of Catholics described as liberals are mobilizing behind the scenes to provide Barack Obama with support for his campaign. As soon as Deal Hudson revealed this story to the media, Alexis Kelley and Sister Simone Campbell, SSS, of Catholics in Alliance responded that Mr. Hudson was mistaken. They wrote that the organization they represent is a “non-partisan, nonprofit organization that promotes the fullness of Catholic social teaching.”
But I would suggest to you that these ladies are protesting too much, and that it is quite certain that Hudson is not far off the mark with his comments.
Now why would I say this? Because these women represent the same organization that issued a call for “civility in politics” last November. While they have subsequently removed the document from their website, due in large part to our exposing the effort for what it truly was—a statement lacking all respect for the sacrament of Holy Eucharist—the fact remains that the group did issue it and that is a recorded fact.
I welcome you to read my commentary on this ridiculous statement and our call for the signers to remove their names. As I wrote in this column:

The first point in their series of bulleted statements reads, “As Catholics we should not enlist the Church’s moral endorsement of our political preferences. We should do this out of respect for our fellow Catholics of equally good will but differing political convictions and our interest in protecting the clergy from being drawn into partisan political to the detriment of the Church’s integrity and objectivity.”

This is the most inane representation of alleged acts of civility that I have ever seen; in fact I dare say it is purely evil in its intent. American Life League has repeatedly called for bishops, priests, deacons and Eucharistic ministers to protect Christ from sacrilege by denying the sacrament to public figures who claim to be Catholic while also supporting abortion. The group’s statement characterizes our actions as somehow exhibiting disrespect for our Church leaders who have been ordained to serve Christ. It is completely irrational to propose that out of respect for those who favor child killing, or as this group puts it, “Catholics of equally good will but differing political convictions,” we would withdraw our campaign to make sure that Christ, truly present in the sacrament of Holy Eucharist, is protected from sacrilege.

In light of these facts I believe that Hudson is right and the women are simply attempting to back down from what in my humble opinion is their political agenda at the current moment.
How can Catholics do such things? Why are such actions tolerated? Well, don’t ask Archbishop Niederauer.
I suppose you may be scratching your head and wondering what in the world is going on with “Catholics” these days? I must tell you that if I knew, perhaps I could sleep better at night. Sadly, it would appear these examples represent a trend that has no end in sight, at least for the foreseeable future. Moral relativism has crept into the statements and actions of even those called to lead Catholics and teach them. Such a situation should sadden each of us beyond description.
The antidote is, of course, total faith in Christ and resolve to defend the Catholic Church and her teaching regardless of the scandalous comments and behavior we see around us. And we should recall those ageless comments of Pope Benedict XVI, who said:

The human race—every one of us—is the sheep lost in the desert which no longer knows the way. The Son of God will not let this happen; he cannot abandon humanity in so wretched a condition. He leaps to his feet and abandons the glory of Heaven, in order to go in search of the sheep and pursue it, all the way to the Cross. He takes it upon his shoulders and carries our humanity; he carries us all—he is the good shepherd who lays down his life for the sheep.
Inauguration as Pope, April 2005

Let us pray for the Holy Father and be confident that in God’s time all of the chaos within the Church will be exposed, and souls will be healed and brought into full union with Christ, our Shepherd.

"I’ve Killed More Babies Than You Have!"

You know the Democrat Party is messed up when this sort of thing is seen as a selling point: Hillary Clinton is professing to be a more vigorous defender of babykilling than Barack Obama. But in this skirmish, Obama has the upper (lower?) hand:

In 2002, as an Illinois legislator, Obama voted against the Induced Infant Liability Act, which would have protected babies that survived late-term abortions. That same year a similar federal law, the Born Alive Infant Protection Act, was signed by President Bush. Only 15 members of the U.S. House opposed it, and it passed the Senate unanimously on a voice vote.

So Barack is even more extreme than NARAL. I don’t think Hillary can top that, but the fact that she’d like to speaks volumes about her.