May 17, 2013
This week I had the opportunity to visit Hannah’s House, a maternity home for women in Mishawaka. What a blessing! Opened in 1993 with the support of Bethel College, the Catholic Diocese of Fort Wayne – South Bend, Saint Joseph Hospital in Mishawaka and Women’s Care Center, Hannah’s House serves dozens of local women each year. Women move in during pregnancy and move out within months of giving birth. Women are invited to pay $5.00 a day to live there if they have it, but no one is turned away if they can’t pay.
While at Hannah’s House, the residents prepare for a stable life after baby comes. They work on their education or seek employment, learn about managing a home for them and their baby, and develop newborn care and parenting skills. A house mom is onsite 24 hours a day.
During the last 20 years, Hannah’s House has established a positive reputation in the area and inquiries from pregnant moms keep rolling in. Unfortunately, with just one house on a residential street, there is more demand than space available. Thankfully, donors joined together to grow Hannah’s House. A house was donated on the same block as Hannah’s House and funds were raised for operating costs of a home to serve up to 20 more women and 20 more babies each year! The Killilea House, named after founders Bill and Diane Killilea, was dedicated on May 10 and will open its doors soon.
I was impressed by the comfortable atmosphere of Hannah’s House. On my tour, a mom relaxed in a family room-type setting with her beautiful, smiling newborn. Soon she’ll be leaving Hannah’s House to start an independent life for her and her little girl, but now she seemed completely at ease. Hannah’s House didn’t have an institutional feel like one might expect.
I was also impressed by the longevity of Hannah’s House. Twenty years of existence says something about the gift they are offering women. And it’s hard to fathom just how many thousands of volunteer hours have gone into operating Hannah’s House throughout the years. During my short visit, two volunteers sorted donated baby and home goods that the moms can earn as they go out on their own.
Hannah’s House is a gem in the Mishawaka area. It’s encouraging to see a community come together to support mothers choosing life for their babies! Happy 20th Anniversary, Hannah’s House!
May 14, 2013
We applaud three of our Congressional representatives in Washington for speaking out in light of the Gosnell abortion trial verdict. On Monday, May 13, Pennsylvania abortionist Kermit Gosnell was found guilty of three counts of 1st-degree murder, involuntary manslaughter, infanticide and hundreds of other charges. For more information on the case, visit www.lifenews.com.
We are so encouraged to see our elected officials speak out on this important issue. If you see any other statements from our representatives, let us know in the comments.
3rd District – Congressman Marlin Stutzman
Stutzman on Gosnell Verdict: Justice for Three Victims
“Abortion is not Safe and it is not Rare”
Washington, D.C. – U.S. Congressman Marlin Stutzman issued the following statement today following the verdict in the trial of Kermit Gosnell:
“Today’s verdict brings justice for three of Gosnell’s countless victims. This trial has stripped away society’s convenient euphemisms and exposed abortion’s ugly truth: abortion is not safe and it is not rare. Now that the jury has delivered its verdict, the American people must come together for an honest conversation about abortion and Congress must exercise its powers of oversight to prevent similar atrocities.”
Video of Congressman Stutzman on Fox News:
4th District – Congressman Todd Rokita
Rokita: Justice Served in Gosnell Trial, But We Must Continue Fight to Protect Unborn
(Washington, D.C.) – U.S. Rep. Todd Rokita today released the following statement after a verdict was announced in the murder trial of Dr. Kermit Gosnell in Philadelphia. Gosnell was found guilty on three counts of first-degree murder of babies that were born alive and then killed with scissors, along with a fourth count of involuntary manslaughter in the drug-overdose death of a patient and hundreds of other counts related to violations of Pennsylvania’s abortion laws.
“We can take solace today that justice has been served, and that the monstrous crimes committed by Dr. Gosnell will not go unpunished. The conviction of this murderer is an example of our judicial system working to protect the weakest and most vulnerable among us. This case is a solemn reminder that we must remain vigilant in the cause of protecting life, and I will continue to fight to oppose an abortion regime that is complicit in the murder of unborn and newborn babies,” said Rokita.
Last month, Rokita spoke on the House floor in protest of the lack of mainstream media coverage of the Gosnell trial. In his remarks, Rokita cited the many illegal late-term abortions performed by the clinic, as well as the many post-birth murders described in testimony during the trial (those remarks can be viewed or read by clicking here). Along with other members of the House of Representatives, Rokita also sent letters to the heads of ABC, CBS, and NBC News demanding that they report on the Gosnell trial, as well as other high-profile abortion controversies.
6th District – Congressman Luke Messer
Jennifer and I share the heartbreak and outrage of so many Americans toward the crimes committed by Dr. Gosnell in Philadelphia.
Our nation’s founding fathers recognized that we are all endowed by our Creator with certain inalienable rights. Chief among them is the right to life and the recognition that every life is precious and deserving of dignity.
We must keep working and praying so we will once again be a nation that recognizes the fundamental right to life.
May 13, 2013
The scene inside a grim-looking, three story brick building in West Philadelphia was deplorable. Cats roamed freely and deposited feces wherever they pleased. White young mothers were ushered one way and black young mothers were taken another. And baby parts frequently plugged the toilet.
This grisly description is of the Kermit Gosnell “House of Horrors,” or the abortion facility called the Women’s Medical Center. Abortionist Kermit Gosnell could very well be killing babies today if it wasn’t for a 2010 raid on his facility. No, it wasn’t the Pennsylvania Department of Public Health who stopped him for unsanitary conditions. It wasn’t the American Civil Liberties Union who called him out on racial discrimination. Rather, the FBI raided the Gosnell facility on drug charges.
What the FBI found is shocking. In addition to the above conditions, they found baby feet in severed jars and baby’s bodies with open wounds on the neck. You see, Gosnell did abortions well past the legal limit of 24-weeks in Pennsylvania. Those testifying have said that he delivered live babies only to kill them by snipping their necks with scissors.
Gosnell was brought to trial this spring for the murder of seven infants and one adult, a woman named Karnamaya Mongar who was given a reckless dose of drugs. Not only have Gosnell’s employees testified against their former boss on the stand, several – including Gosnell’s wife, Pearl – have pleaded guilty to charges ranging from three-degree murder to racketeering.
If you haven’t heard about the Gosnell atrocities until now, sadly you’re not alone. Mainstream media outlets have been slow to cover the Gosnell trial, despite the jaw-dropping revelations. Typically, newsrooms follow a “if it bleeds it leads” mantra, but not in the case of Gosnell.
Four weeks after the Gosnell trial started, pro-life advocates started demanding answers as to why the trial wasn’t being covered. On April 11, a Virginia-based blogger named Mollie Hemingway tweeted at the Washington Post health policy reporter (who covered items like the Susan G. Komen funding flap and the Sandra Fluke controversy) about the lack of coverage. The Washington Post reporter actually tweeted back and said, “I cover policy for the Washington Post, not local crime.”
The same day, members of Congress took to the House floor to expose the Gosnell trial. Indiana’s third district representative, Marlin Stutzman, shared:
“In that building—crawling with animals, reeking of urine, and filled with bloodstained furniture—Kermit Gosnell was running a slaughterhouse. On a regular basis, he used a pair of scissors to sever the spinal cords of helpless babies who were born alive during illegal, late-term abortions. The loss of these lives should scar the conscience of civilized people everywhere. This is not a discussion about abstract concepts like ‘choice,’ we are talking about brutal deaths of newborn children. Mr. Speaker, Kermit Gosnell is a predator who must be publicly exposed and openly denounced and that’s why I come to the floor—to bring attention to this case.”
One day later, on April 12, pro-life leaders including Troy Newman of Operation Rescue and Bryan Kemper of Priests for Life organized a “Tweetfest.” This event was designed to give attention to the Gosnell trial on the popular social media platform, Twitter. Indiana Right to Life took part in the Tweetfest by sending 32 tweets that were retweeted a total of 147 times, effectively spreading the message. Astonishingly, a social media analytics company counted 600,000 tweets about Gosnell corresponding with the Tweetfest. That evening, CNN’s Anderson Cooper covered the story and the Washington Post executive director even stated, “We should have sent a reporter sooner.”
While the media blackout has started to crumble, there still is not wall-to-wall coverage that Americans saw on other trials like Casey Anthony or OJ Simpson. We believe the atrocities of Gosnell deserve exposing because it makes the horror of abortion undeniable. Abortion supporters must ask themselves, if Gosnell is a murderer for snipping babies’ spines moments after they were born, why is abortion okay moments before when the baby is in the womb?
We will keep fighting to expose this case, even though it happened hundreds of miles away. The trial provides a vast collection of graphic images and first-hand accounts that don’t exist out of other abortion facilities. To be sure, we have snippets of what really goes on in abortion facilities – video from Lila Rose here, state inspection reports there. But the Gosnell case provides a unique glimpse because all the revelations are on full display.
Too often, abortionists protest regulation and escape the public light. For example, notorious late-term abortionist, LeRoy Carhart (who also does first-trimester abortions in Indianapolis), recently did an abortion in Maryland that killed a young mother and her 33-week daughter. Carhart is under investigation, but at this point, we have no idea if he will be charged in the women’s death. Gosnell is different because his vast number of crimes are being made very public right now.
For women’s health and safety, we wish that the Gosnell conditions were an anomaly, but they are not. Earlier in April, a Delaware Planned Parenthood abortion facility was shut down for unsanitary conditions. Former employees gave eyewitness accounts of soiled and bloodied operating tables.
Here in Indiana, there are nine surgical abortion sites that are required to be licensed and inspected. We pray that state inspectors fulfill their requirements, unlike the Pennsylvania officials who let Gosnell operate for 17 years without an inspection. And thanks to SB 371 that recently passed the General Assembly, soon chemical abortion sites will be required to undergo licensing and inspection like surgical sites. We hope this necessary oversight keeps another Gosnell from appearing in Indiana.
The Gosnell case is horrific. Even to those following the case since the beginning, the details send chills down one’s back. But, we use the horror of Gosnell to show the truth of abortion. And one day, when we end abortion, there will be justice for the precious babies and the mother that Gosnell murdered.
May 7, 2013
The Bloomington Common Council and Mayor oversee a funding program for social services agencies called the Jack Hopkins Social Services funding program. Since 1993 it has provided more than $2 million to local organizations, including a whopping $35,052 to Planned Parenthood.
Planned Parenthood is the largest abortion business in the state of Indiana and its Bloomington location does all the Monroe County abortions. In 2011 alone, there were 731 abortions in Monroe County. For those familiar with Lila Rose’s undercover videos, Planned Parenthood of Bloomington is the location at which a staff person coached Rose, posing as a 13-year-old girl, to go out of state for an abortion after she said her 31-year-old boyfriend got her pregnant.
In this year’s Jack Hopkins funding request, Planned Parenthood of Indiana applied for $5,000 for its Ensuring Access to Life Saving, Preventative Health Services initiative. The problem is any money given to the abortion provider supports its abortion business, no matter how indirectly. Planned Parenthood likes to tout its preventative services, but any grant money they receive for non-abortion services frees up more money to expand its abortion business.
Planned Parenthood’s funding request isn’t a done deal. Of their 14 total requests, three have been denied over the years. The most recent denial came last year when Planned Parenthood requested $4,975 for “Love, Sex, and the Freshman 15.” Bloomington residents concerned that their city’s funding program is supporting the regional abortion business have an opportunity to publicly speak out.
Several steps remain in the Jack Hopkins funding process.
|Technical Assistance Meeting (optional)||Tuesday, 19 March 2013
5:30pm, McCloskey Room
|Application Deadline||Monday, 01 April 2013
|Invited Agencies Present Applications||Monday, 13 May 2013
5:30pm, Council Chambers
|Committee Recommends Allocation of Funds||Thursday, 30 May 2013
5:30pm, Council Chambers
|Agencies to Sign Funding Agreements||Early June 2013|
|Common Council Acts on the Recommendations||Wednesday, 19 June 20137:30pm, Council Chambers|
Not only are Common Council meetings open to the public, but there will be opportunity for public comment as well. Also, sending an email or placing a phone call to your Council representative is well within order. You can find the list of representatives here and Mayor Kruzan’s contact information on this page.
As long as Planned Parenthood ends preborn babies’ lives, the organization doesn’t deserve a dime of government funding.
May 3, 2013
Earlier this week the FDA announced a highly controversial change in the rules governing the sale of the drug known as Plan B in an attempt to appease a federal judge who has ordered the removal of all age restrictions on the drug. The new rules impact Plan B distribution in two significant ways: the drug can now be purchased by girls as young as 15-years old with proof of age, and the drug may be stocked over-the-counter on retail store shelves. Prior to this new rule, girls had to be at least 17-years old and were required to purchase the drug at the pharmacy counter. Prior to this, of course, the drug was available only by prescription.
The new FDA rules raise a myriad of important questions, but here are five that I believe should be front and center in the policy debate just beginning to evolve:
- Will cashiers at stores stocking Plan B be allowed to opt-out of selling the drug if they are morally opposed to the drug’s abortifacient potential?
- Will the federal government require stores to stock Plan B?
- If a person 15-years old or older buys Plan B and then gives it to a girl under 14-years old, will the person providing Plan B be subject to criminal prosecution for aiding in child sexual abuse? On a related note, what is the criminal liability for persons who legally purchase Plan B for the purpose of re-selling the drug to persons below age 15?
- Will stores selling Plan B be held criminally liable for selling Plan B to a 15-year old who is engaged in a statutory rape relationship?
- What will the long term impact be of girls taking increased doses of Plan B to compensate for being well beyond the 72-hour window in which it is meant to be taken?
There are a lot more questions that could be added to the list, questions like whether men with criminal histories as sexual predators are allowed to buy the drug, or whether boyfriends who slip Plan B to their girlfriends without their knowledge are criminally liable, or… the list goes on.
The FDA approval to place Plan B on retail store shelves is just one more social experiment sought by population control advocates for decades. Now the only barrier that seemingly remains is the pesky requirement that girls must be at least 15-years old to buy it off the shelf. The federal courts, as evidenced by Judge Edward Korman’s recent ruling now under appeal by the Justice Department, are already well on their way to crumbling this barrier. But that doesn’t mean we should stop asking the tough questions. Or overlooking the potential criminal and civic liabilities that might just bring this entire scheme crashing back to common sense.
- Mike Fichter
Mike Fichter is the President and CEO of Indiana Right to Life