Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Random thoughts...

Just sorta thinking out loud here. (Is this like a "Quick Takes"??)

1. No "pro-choicers" -- not one -- commented on this post. They debate and march and legislate for this one specific "choice" and yet they will not look and defend what they advocate? Perhaps they did watch, but could not defend it? I ask that any "pro-choicer" reading this take four minutes to watch the entire video, and then defend what you see. I hear only crickets so far....

2. There is breaking video today of a Planned Parenthood clinic aiding and abetting underage sex trafficking. I guess this should be shocking, but it's simply the latest in a long line of atrocities exposed by the brave Lila Rose at Live Action. I thought feminists were supposed to care about women and children, so where is the outrage? And where is the mainstream media?

3. A question for "pro-choicers": Have any of you read Abby Johnson's book, Unplanned, yet? If so, I would love your thoughts. Do you think she was fair to your side? I was actually surprised by how gracious she was to her Planned Parenthood colleagues, especially considering the ending scenes.

4. How had I never heard of the Elliot Institute and its work before before yesterday? It's a wealth of resources! I found this page on forced abortions to be particularly important considering discussions we've had on this blog about whether or not abortion is freely chosen in America. Anyone ("pro-choice" or pro-life) who cares about women should read that link. The more I think about it, the more I want to bring that aspect of abortion to the forefront. Nobody seems to pay much attention to it.

5. On this post we had an interesting discussion about some highly offensive "pro-choice" protesters at the San Francisco March for Life. One comment came from a new reader, Demrie, who said this:
I was on that side not so long ago. I attended Marches. I held up pro-choice signs. I enjoyed the party-like atmosphere created by such outlandish and extravagant people. But as I got to know many of them, I discovered nearly all of them to be lost souls with such damage lives they have turned to living in the moment and using shock value to get attention. It wasn't even about the causes they protested or supported: it was about dancing on the edge to see how far they could go before they fell off. I am going through my own struggles now as I've not only returned to my Christian roots, but am going through RCIA to become Catholic which has greatly offended family and friends. 
Dear Demrie has started her own blog, and I hope you will go and welcome her at A Woman's Catholic Journey. I think you will find her story quite compelling and heart wrenching, and I pray that our blogger community can be a support to her as she goes through the RCIA process.

6. Miss Gwen, what did you think of the post I wrote for you? I promise I'm not hurt that you didn't comment. (Okay, I'm a little hurt!!)  ;)   **Update: Christina pointed out that Miss Gwen did comment! Thanks Miss Gwen, and sorry for the mistake! (Refer to #7 for more about my mistakes, ha ha!)

7. Blog stuff: I am in the "something's gotta give" place in my daily life. I am reading all the blogs, but I have not commented as much as I'd like to. I hope no one is offended if I am not modeling good blogger etiquette anymore. Forgive?? And, I probably don't say this often enough: If you ever see that I have misrepresented Church teaching, please bring it to my attention (my email is at the bottom of this page), and I will correct my mistake as soon as possible. I would also like to thank the people who have gently chastised me behind the scenes when I have not been as charitable on this blog as I should be. I always welcome correction, even though it smarts a bit at first. Chances are, I will agree with you and make a change.

(Oh my goodness, it ended up being seven random thoughts! I think I just did my first "Quick Takes" by default! And it's not even Friday!)


  1. I think Miss G did leave a comment - as anon. :)

  2. Ack, Christina, thank you! Not all the anonymous comments make it to my email inbox, so I missed her note!! Thank you, and sorry Miss G! :)

  3. Thank you, Leila. Between your blogs and the Conversion Diary and people responding to mine, I feel wrapped in love and support. I'll be posting lots of questions on my blogs! I'm so glad I found you.

  4. I knew you'd jump on the quick takes bandwagon eventually... ;)

  5. Pro Choicers aren't commenting because they already know how it's going to go around here.

    You link some sick photos or video of an "abortion" that is beyond extreme, while assuring us all that you don't advocate this disgusting stuff of course, and ask what pro aborts think.

    We say, "this is extreme," "these costumed goofballs don't represent us" or in this particular case, "this is a highly dubious video. The girl talking is smirking and the nature of this video is suspicious."

    You will say no it's not.A recent ex-planned parenthood convert says women are all forced into extreme, late-term abortions when they're not being sold into the sex trade.

    It's a cartoon debate.

    Most pro-choie people do see a difference between a baby in the 1st trimester and the 2nd & 3rd. I know two women who have had abortions and they both did the deed at 6 weeks. It was a shot in the arm and a suppository to induce a period. Not a 35 week old fetus being cut up.

    I know it is all the same to you, but just as you get upset when people call all Catholic priests pedophiles, we don't like it when you show some extreme creepy video and act like this is what we find acceptable. Like we are a bunch of circus freaks who see no problem with women getting viable babies butchered from our wombs.

    You put words in our mouths, motivations behind us, etc. that just aren't accurate. And when we are having a talk about it, you are not satisfied.

    So fine - what are we supposed to say? This isn't a place for discussion & all your former liberal regulars are done with it.

    I think the video is not sound. There's my 2 cents.

  6. Dear Anonymous: Are you saying that the video is a fake? You think that is computer generated? Do you not know how abortions are performed? Look in a textbook. The video could not have been more clear and graphic. To the last detail that the aborted baby (second trimester?) is a boy.

    What do you mean "not sound"? Fake?

    And the woman... she is from an abortion clinic that exists and has a website. Are you going to argue that the abortion clinic she is from does not exist, too? Evidence?

    That is very strange, to be honest. You see the video and the answer you give is that it is a fake?

    Okay, let's just pretend it's a real video (anyone else not realize it's real?)... do you think what was done in the video is wrong? Or do you think it's a good thing, and should be legal?

    And if you are against mid- to late-term abortions, are you working to get them outlawed? What are you doing to make sure that no "older" unborn children are brutally aborted?

    I'm guessing you don't want abortions, at any stage, to be illegal. I will stand corrected if I am wrong.

    I'm still trying to understand why you think the video and the woman from the Northland Family Planning Center in Michigan are fake?


  7. You link some sick photos or video of an "abortion" that is beyond extreme,

    Sorry, I have to revisit this. You think that 1) the "abortion" is a fake, and 2) if it is real, it's some sort of "extreme" case. Huh? The baby looks to be in the second trimester (not the baby at the end, who looks close to full term). Second trimester abortions are QUITE COMMON. How do you think they surgically abort a child of that age? What you saw is routine, not "extreme". If you think it's extreme, then you have been misinformed about what abortion is, and maybe that is why you are pro-choice.

    I know many pro-choice Americans who are not fully informed, and when they find out that abortion is not rare (50 million in 38 years), they are shocked. Sometimes the general populace just believe what they are told by the media and the culture, and they don't investigate for themselves.

    If you are shocked enough by that video to think it's "extreme" and a fake, then you might want to start doing your own investigation. Because you may have been duped by the pro-abortion lobby.

  8. For the record, so far not one of the pro-choice commenters has defended the video. Mostly, they have switched the subject, and the one time the video was watched, it was deemed a fake.


    But I don't blame them, as I would not want to defend what I saw happening on that screen.

  9. #7 - Prayers for you. The "something's gotta give place" is no fun!

  10. I'm with Melanie. Keeping you in my prayers!

  11. Here is a link regarding authenticity of abortion photos/videos


  12. Leila,
    Are you really surprised that lots of Pro-choicers don't scramble over each other to comment? It feels like your real reason for inviting us to comment is so that you can bombard us with endless straw men and rhetorical questions (most of which have already been answered many times over by others) in front of your loyal Pro-life supporters. I for one may be someone who is always willing to try to see the other side's point of view, and to learn from them, but I'm not a complete masochist!
    I've not debated with Catholics before, and I've been less than well informed about Catholic doctrine. I'm grateful that getting involved with this blog has got me reading more about Catholicism, but our positions are so very far apart that I struggle to see where we have any common ground - which makes it very difficult to have a rational discussion. I will follow up on your questions on your other thread later today though, once I have more time.

  13. Thanks for proving my point!

  14. "You will say no it's not.A recent ex-planned parenthood convert says women are all forced into extreme, late-term abortions when they're not being sold into the sex trade."

    If you're referring to "Unplanned," then you have obviously been misinformed about the book's contents. Abby Johnson makes no such allegations in her book.

  15. Simian: if you aren't able to defend your pro-choice views in re: late-term abortion, why do you hold them?

  16. Okay - I get confused with all the Anonymous postings. They can't be one and the same person - because the link that one Anonymous provides actually shows that all the photos and videos that pro-lifers use have been verified as being the "real" thing. So, that can't be the same person who says he/she can't enter into a logical dialogue with a Catholic pro-life person. Could that possibly be because that person is starting to question abortion just a little bit. Yes, sometimes I read these posts and I even think that people are being attacked for their position - you have to go back to the beginning. Where does life begin? I am a biology teacher - I present the science and my students learn to think for themselves. What is a zygote? A zygote is just when the egg and sperm meet - i.e. when the egg is fertilized. As soon as those cells start to divide, you have an embryo that is going to become. Become what? Well, if it happened to be two humans procreating, then it will be a human - a baby. No doubt. I have never heard a woman say I'm pregnant with a mass of cells. No, she immediately starts planning for her baby to come into the world. And, if she happens to miscarry (a spontaneous abortion), then she mourns that loss just the same as if she lost a baby that she carried full-term. That's why so many women (and men) are passionate about the pro-life stance - they recognize fully the loss of life when a baby is aborted. No matter when during the pregnancy. That's what they seek so hard to understand from pro-choicers - "why do they not also see the abortion as a choice to eliminate a life?" I once told my daughters when they teased me for crying over a commercial this fact: once I became a mother I found that I cried for not just my children but for all the children in the world. That's when I truly became a pro-lifer. Somebody has to speak up for all those babies - they do feel pain, they do suck their thumbs, they do sleep and wake, etc., all while they are still in the safety of their mother's womb. If you are still a pro-choice person, then please look up the life of the pro-life saint, St. Gianna Beretta Molla. Maybe her life may speak to you in ways that the rest of us cannot. Peace.

  17. JoAnna, I think that Simian is against late-term abortions. I will let him clarify.

    Can anyone help me out? I cannot bear to look at that video again, but it seems to me that the majority of the video was the abortion of a mid-term abortion. Then, at the end, there was the birth and disposal of a late-term baby. Am I getting that right? There were two babies.

  18. Simian,

    I still have not heard one "pro-choice" reader view and defend what he sees on that video. Will you be the first?

    Why will no one simply answer?

    Simian, could you please just answer?


  19. Dear Annonymous

    "I know it is all the same to you, but just as you get upset when people call all Catholic priests pedophiles, we don't like it when you show some extreme creepy video and act like this is what we find acceptable. Like we are a bunch of circus freaks who see no problem with women getting viable babies butchered from our wombs."

    The priests are grown men and can stick up for themselves. The unborn only have our voices for their very existence.

    I think the pictures just make some women realize the horror and then they lash out at the people who care the most.

  20. we don't like it when you show some extreme creepy video and act like this is what we find acceptable.

    Anonymous, what did you find that was creepy on the video, and are you saying you don't find the abortion you saw acceptable?

  21. So here's a good investigative look at what the "pro-life" side does to "inform" and "help" women who are or might be pregnant. Quite scary, in my opinion.


    -miss g

  22. Miss G, I remember that discussion, from quite a while back. I cannot speak for every center in ever town (esp. the non-Catholic ones), but to tell women that abortion causes long-term harm is not a lie. It is PP who has been caught on tape numerous times doing horrible things such as covering up statutory rape of girls, taking donations earmarked to abort black babies, aiding and abetting underage sex trafficking (which I still haven't heard you denounce, nor have the feminists made a peep). And on and on and on. (Not to mention the lack of regulations of abortion clinics, which are hazardous to women's lives and well as their children.)

    Miss G, I am involved with several crisis pregnancy centers here in Phoenix, and they are amazing. You should hear the testimonies of the women and girls who have been helped by our centers. They are not seen for a quick fix (as in PP), but they are loved and cared for long after their children are born. I wish you could see what incredible care they give these women, and long term support. I won't try to convince you, but I may write a post on that soon.

    What I don't understand, and maybe you can help me understand, Miss G: What is it about the baby that is so horrible? What is the catastrophe that awaits a woman who gives birth to her child? Why is the baby the enemy?

    Can you please help me understand why the child is the enemy?

  23. Miss G, are you making the allegation that all pro-life clinics act dishonestly?

  24. It is a poverty to decide that a child must die so that you may live as you wish. - Mother Teresa

  25. Can I just say very quick--I have to understand how people would feel they are being attacked. The subject of abortion causes a lot of anger on both sides. But what needs to be understood is that we aren't attacking the person, we are attacking the issue of abortion.

    It's hard for us who are pro life to not get emotional over this because we recognize that it's a BABY that is being killed. I couldn't even watch the video. I don't even want to hear about the procedures and "how they do it". But I realize that a lot of people do need this--they need to hear the proof.

    I would like to do a shout out to those who are not pro life but still come back to this website to ask questions, to risk being "attacked". I for one don't think anyone here has meant to make anyone feel attacked, but I can see how it would be easy to feel that way.

    I honestly feel a lot of respect for those like Miss G, who continues to ask questions. I admire her spirit and how she challenges us. It takes a lot of courage. My husband is a new Catholic who doesn't understand a lot of the Catholicism. I always tell him, "Instead of making a misinformed decision about the Church first, why don't you just ask??"

    So with all this said, without any animosity, I also must ask with Leila, can you tell us your opinion about this video? One person had called "sick" (or something like that) that Leila would post something so crude. But I have to point out, that it is the video that is crude and sick. So may I ask, would you agree that this ACT is sick and crude?

    Please understand, we only are seeking truth and answers here. We don't mean to let our anger come off as an attack against you.

  26. Becky, thank you. I agree. I, also, have respect for Miss G and the others who come back time and again to respectfully dialogue.

    Let's pull it back to the main question:

    Are the acts committed on that video moral? Are they good? Or are they immoral?

    And, can you see, "pro-choicers", why we don't believe that those acts have any place in a civilized society?

    I hope someone can respond the the question of the acts seen on that video.


  27. Leila, I want to believe you that the crisis pregnancy centers you work with in the Phoenix area provide support in a charitable and ethical manner. I'm all for offering women as many services as possible to aid in family planning, health and childbirth. But not every crisis pregnancy does operate that way-just like not all PP centers are the bastions of hell that many people here like to think they are.

    I love babies. I have several friends at the moment (who happen to be pro-choice) who are pregnant-even a couple who were surprised with pregnancy. In a perfect world, a pregnancy would be cause for much joy and celebration. I'd MUCH rather discover being pregnant than find out I have cancer or un-curable disease.
    But the point is, not everyone is ready to be a parent and not everyone considers this before having sex. Not everyone reserves sex as something only to be done for the purpose of bringing spouses closer together and for procreation.

    I feel like we've hashed all this out before, so I think I'll wait for the next posts on different topics to contribute more commentary.

    -miss g

  28. Miss G, I understand that it gets hard to keep responding when you're on "enemy turf" (you know I mean that colloquially... we are not really enemies).

    I have so many women in my life who have been hurt by abortion. One so badly that she had suicidal tendencies after she aborted. She thought the abortion clinic would give her counseling, and instead, they talked her into aborting her child. She was devastated. If you read Unplanned, you will see why there is pressure to abort when a woman goes into those clinics.

    I will leave you with this: While a pregnancy is not always cause for celebration and joy (due to circumstances), a baby always should be. We must love the mother and the baby, even when the pregnancy is unplanned.

    Babies are not the enemy. Every abortion destroys a baby.

    Babies are not the enemy.

    Thanks for engaging.

    (One last question? Did you watch the entire video? And what did you think?)

  29. Just thinking out loud here. As I sort my laundry, my brain keeps going....

    Why should "a pregnancy is not welcome news" lead to "therefore, we have a right to kill the baby".

    I don't get how one justifies the other.


  30. I'm just going to throw this one out there, to see if anyone wants to comment. This late-term abortionist has an interesting way of killing the baby. All legal.


    This stuff goes on every day. Legally, as in this case, and illegally, as in the case of the Philadelphia Butcher. But it's all the same deadly horror. Why won't any "pro-choicer" take a hard look and say, "Enough! I care about women's freedom, but not at this price!"

    Monica had a change of heart, and Abby Johnson, Roe, Doe, Nathanson, many abortionists, many clinic workers, many on this site who were once staunchly pro-"choice" and even had abortions... many have had a change of heart. Let's keep praying for more softening of hearts.

  31. [But the point is, not everyone is ready to be a parent and not everyone considers this before having sex.]

    That's true. However, the better solution than abortion is adoption. If someone's not ready to be a parent, that person can give the baby to someone who is ready, and who desperately wants to be a parent (such as my stepsister, who has been struggling with infertility for many years and is currently waiting for a baby to adopt).

    It's not necessary to kill the baby.

  32. Also, Miss G, let me add my voice to the chorus of those who are glad you are here and willing to dialogue with us. :)

  33. I'm a perennial lurker on this blog, and I think everyone has said things in a much clearer manner than I could, but I just wanted to add something.

    I used to be pro-choice, and I do sort of know where people like Anonymous are coming from. No one wants to argue with someone when you think they believe you're monsters,

    but pro-choicers need to get out of their sensitivities, their offendedness, and really take a long, hard look at what it is they are defending. If there is any, even remote chance that a child, a living, human child, is being destroyed by abortion, then defending access to it, even in difficult circumstances, is defending a profound injustice. It is defending the right of one person to take the life of another, an innocent and vulnerable human being who didn't ask to be conceived in crisis circumstances, who has no voice whatsoever and who suffers brutal death from the "choice" (even in the first trimester).

    In my mind it's comparable to defending chattel slavery. I'm sure there were slavery-apologists who could come up with very compassionate arguments for the system, that slaves needed to be taken care of by stronger and smarter men who would provide them with work and civilize them. That slavery was in the bible, and as long as one didn't mistreat their slaves then it was acceptable to God. (I've heard these types of arguments used to defend the Caudillo/hacienda system in Latin America which was practically a form of slavery). It was still wrong, even if you were trying to be compassionate about it and help the poor savages to be civilized. Abortion is still wrong even if you're trying to give women options. It's a violation of human dignity and human rights.

  34. There a paragraph in the book UnPlanned that really hits home, and I think it would help Pro-Choicers to read just that paragraph alone... of course I don't have my book with me at the moment :(
    But it's when Abby realizes that places like PP, and all of the pro-choicers who are motivated by caring for the women in crisis (And believe it or not, I and many pro-lifers DO understand that all you pro-choicers are acting out of love and compassion for women... if only you could see and recognize that we pro-lifers are, as well!) are basically solving an immediate crisis with an immediate fix. But on the flip-side, the pro-life organizations seek to solve the woman's LONG-TERM crisis (of poverty, unplanned pregnancy, family health, spiritual health) and therefore look to treat the WHOLE PERSON of that woman in question... along with her unborn baby.

    Because whether she's ready to parent or not, there is ALREADY A BABY inside of her.

  35. Barbara - wow, well-said. I really do wish more pro-choicers could see that it is abortion itself we have the problem with, and we are trying to discuss/debate that topic... not trying to slam every day pro-choicers personally.

  36. Sarah-it's abundantly clear to pro-choice people that the #1 thing we disagree about is abortion. The undercover video "attacks" (expose is a better word but I can't get the accent mark on the e) by Lila Rose et. al on PP outlines this very clearly. As does the death of Dr. Tiller. PP in addition to providing abortion services and contraception also provides counseling, cancer screenings and other health services to women, many of them considered "low income." But anti-choice people refuse to see the beneficial services PP provides.

    Pro-life people also refuse to see the harmful, misguided information that many crisis pregnancy centers shovel out (tho according to Leila, the ones in Phoenix are top notch). Outright lies such as abortion=breast cancer, abortion=lifetime of depression and increased risk for suicide, abortion=sin, damaging your relationship with God.

    As for trying to discuss/debate the topic-isn't that what he HAVE been trying to do in some small measure here? What happens is that too frequently, some commenter on here hails all pro-choice people as the Devil incarnate, as twisted, as hateful, and as unfeeling, cold, and heartless. So you'll excuse me if I have a hard time being civil or wanting to continue commenting when I'm told I need to be "healed" by Jesus and that the Devil is in my heart.

    I really, really, really need to get work done today so I apologize if I'm not around to continue "responding" to this "debate"

    -miss g

  37. Outright lies such as abortion=breast cancer, abortion=lifetime of depression and increased risk for suicide, abortion=sin, damaging your relationship with God.

    Actually, Miss G, all those things are true. Did you know that America is about the only nation who still will not publicly acknowledge the link between abortion and breast cancer? "Enlightened" societies like England do, and the only reason we don't acknowledge it here (yet) is that the abortion lobby is very strong. In America, abortion is a political issue, not a health issue.

    As for PP: Are you saying that as long as PP provides certain "good" services, then it's okay that they are helping kiddie pimps? I am just not getting that. It doesn't make sense to me. PP has been caught protecting older men who illegally have sex with young girls numerous times, essentially sending the girls back to their sex abusers after the abortion (instead of reporting cases of statutory rape). That has been going on for a long time. And now the sex trafficking stuff. Why does this not make you want to scream? I don't get it. I thought feminists were about protecting women and (born) children?

    Help me understand why you are not outraged?

  38. Miss Gwen -

    I still recommend you read Abby Johnson's book "Unplanned." :) She does not deny the good that happens at PP's (and I for one appreciated her clearing up some of the misconceptions that PP's are all bad, all the time).

    In regards to calling pro-choicers names, I am sorry if people have been uncharitable in debate (I have to admit, I cannot read every post here due to time constraints). I know not everyone does this though... so I do take issue when pro-choice commenters claim that it's impossible to discuss the issue.

    In regards to lies perpetuated by crisis pregnancy centers... all my personal contact with crisis pregnancy centers and prolifers trying to help have been balanced. There is medical research that indicates there are risks to abortion and women need to know those risks. Picking up a prescription med with a list a mile long of frightening potential side effects stinks, but we wouldn't call those scare tactics, would we? (Speaking as one who gets super paranoid every time I have to fill prescriptions because of those daggone lists... but we would consider that responsible medicine, wouldn't we?)

  39. Miss G.

    Two points: First of all please reconsider using the term "Anti-choice" in reference to pro-lifers. I personally have no issue with women making "choices" and don´t know too many who do. No one in the pro-life arena is opposed to women deciding to go to college, run for public office, or have kids at 30 or 20, or not have kids at all. It´s the single act of taking a life that we´re opposed to, one choice which is perfectly reasonable to oppose. The law does it all the time. It´s why laws exist.

    Think of it this way, this vulnerable child, this person, didn´t ask to be conceived in the womb of an unwilling woman. She had no say in the matter, no rights, no voice and she has no one to speak for her or to defend her. The person who is in the position to be that voice is calling for her execution in a panic as though she were some kind of invader. Someone needs to be in her corner, to give her that voice, to interpret and mediate the situation so the mother can see that the child is not out to destroy her happiness. In a sense I think pro-lifers are the true pro-choicers, because the child too deserves a choice and all babies want the same thing: to live. It´s what everything in their development fights for...from the activities in the womb to the sucking reflex of newborns.

    Second, regarding your comments about Planned Parenthood, I´m aware that they provide other services for low income areas, and I know that abortion providers can be very compassionate towards their patients. I guess the question is, -which Leila already brought up-- does the one mitigate the other?

    Excuse me for using this trite example, but if a totalitarian regime provides health care, jobs and education for its people but also imprisons without trial, tortures and summarily executes opposition members or dissenters is it acceptable? On the one hand it does much good, maybe for a country that has had a lot of poverty and suffering in the past. On the other hand that good sits on a river of blood and a mountain of bones.

    I use this example, not to suggest an equivalence between abortion providers and Hitler &c. but rather to illustrate a profound truth, that while injustice is always parasitic on justice, but justice can never be parasitic on injustice because doing so it corrupts itself. Evil will always show up dressed as good or "unfortunate but necessary" --bomb the city to ashes with every man, woman and child in it and you will stop the war, torture the terrorist into a blubbering mess calling for his momma and you will find out where the bombs are, abort the baby and go back to school on Monday as if nothing happened.

    This goes both ways, if pro-life crisis pregnancy centers are using lies and distortions in order to prevent abortions then this is not right. In my experience though there is research to confirm connections between abortion and breast cancer, suicidal depression &c. It would be irresponsible for a medical professional or counselor not to disclose these as potential risks the way they would for any surgical procedure, and I'm not all that sure that PP does.


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