I’ll be heading down to the Conservative Political Action Conference near Washington, DC for a one-day visit on Friday. While I’m down there, I look forward to hearing from (and maybe interviewing?) the authors of a new book on Kermit Gosnell and his crimes. That’s one book-signing I’ll stand in line for.
Yes, the President will be speaking, but as longtime readers know, that’s not something for which I’d travel to Washington. I’m going for the lower-profile events. I know from other CPACs that the most worthwhile material comes not from the big names but from the lesser-known speakers, from the conversations in the hallways, and from the breakout sessions.
The tweeting and Instagramming will commence as soon as I’m off the train Friday morning and will continue until I get back to South Station 24 hours later. Those so inclined are welcome to follow along at @leaven4theloaf.
Some notes from my trips to earlier CPACs: Ten Hours at CPAC (2015), Notes from CPAC 2014, Encountering New Faces and Old Friends (2013)
I have a constitutional right to substandard care, as long as abortion’s involved. At least that’s what U.S. Supreme Court Justice Breyer and four of his colleagues think. All women, pro-choice and pro-life alike, have reason to choke on that.
In Whole Woman’s Health v. Hellerstedt, the Court tossed out hospital admitting requirements for abortion providers and requirements that abortion facilities meet the same standards as ambulatory surgical centers. Gosnell must be loving this.
I’m not. I was discouraged for about forty-five minutes, then I got angry. The decision stinks. Even so, I have to deal with it.
I’ll deal with it like this.
- Witness. Recommit to 40 Days for Life with its peaceful and decidedly un-political witness to clients and workers at abortion facilities.
- Demonstrate. Marches for Life in Washington and in my state capital next January, rallies at the State House: simple ways to remind the Justices and their abettors that they haven’t settled anything.
- Demand stats. Keep working for an abortion statistics law. Without reliable stats, people like Justice Ginsburg can chant about how “safe” abortion is. There are no reliable uniformly-collected nationwide public health statistics to back that up. Ask the Centers for Disease Control. Its abortion surveillance reports are full of footnotes about the different figures kept by different states, and about the lack of information from several states including my own.
- Protect whistleblowers. If a worker at an abortion facility goes public with concerns about facility conditions, is the worker protected from reprisals? Time to find out.
- Remember Gosnell, from grand jury report to verdict. Breyer mentioned the Gosnell scandal in the Whole Woman’s Health decision, only to dismiss its relevance. He has the devil’s own nerve being so cavalier about women’s health.
- Fight public funding of abortion providers who with their support of Whole Woman’s Health are in favor of making substandard care a Constitutional right.
A tall order, all that – until I’m reminded that five Supreme Court Justices, including three women, consider women’s health to be less important than the business interests of abortion providers.
That’s unacceptable. Pushback starts now.
Happy Monday! Here are some things to keep in mind as you fill in your calendar for the week and charge up your laptop or smartphone. This will become a weekly feature on Leaven. I welcome your suggestions for events to add in the weeks to come.
Three people to follow on Twitter:
- @ovideAUL. New Hampshire’s Ovide Lamontagne will take on his new job next month as General Counsel for Americans United for Life, and this will be the way to follow his projects.
- @alvedaking. Dr. Alveda King is live-tweeting from the Gosnell trial this week.
- @jimgeraghty. Jim Geraghty is a writer for National Review, and while is beat is national politics, he always hits the mark when he addresses the life issues. I look forward to his Morning Jolt email every weekday.
Two events for your consideration:
- At 2:50 today, join people from Boston and beyond in a moment of silence and prayer to observe the one-week mark following the atrocity committed at April 15’s Boston Marathon. Please, not “tragedy.” This is what an atrocity looks like, folks.
- Thursday at Planned Parenthood in Manchester (Pennacook Street, a block east of Elm), there will be a prayer vigil from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. This is a weekly event, in view of the fact that Thursday is surgical abortion day at the facility. You are welcome to join this absolutely peaceful prayer witness for any length of time. See the Pray for Life Center Facebook page for ongoing information about this recurring event.
One site to bookmark: www.nh.gov. This one is basic. If you aren’t already familiar with this portal to state government, spend some time checking it out. The legislative link alone makes it a treasure, but there’s much more. Look up bills, check the date of hearings, see what our governor is up to. This is a tool for anyone keeping an eye on New Hampshire political developments in any area, not just pro-life issues.
One volunteer opportunity: This is a shameless plug for a project near and dear to me. Give blood. You can find blood drives in our area through the Red Cross blood services web site. Last Monday’s Boston bombings brought the ongoing need for blood donations into sharp relief. Most of the people relying on these donations will never make the news, but trust me, they’re our neighbors. I’m a coward with needles, but seeing people I love benefit from blood donations helped me get over that. This is pro-life work below the radar, and it’s essential work.
More next week. Keep me posted if there’s an event in your area that’s helping to build a culture of life.