The “Bottomless Pit:” The U.S. Congress

It is almost humorous to watch as the ineffectiveness in government in Washington is exposed every day — especially in legislative matters. Obtaining Congressional action is a sham. Its operations are comical. It seems to the American public to be unmanageable and its leadership is purely political with no real legislative objectives visible. And the apparent disarray in operations at Congress seems to carry over into every other division of government.

If this chaos of operations in American government was specific to one department alone, it would certainly be simple enough to analyze its issues, devise a fix or two, and implement those corrections. But it is NOT exclusive to the Legislative branch. But today we restrict this conversation to the U.S. Congress. 

Congressional Chaos

I honestly do not understand how Congress gets anything accomplished regarding legislative matters. Actually, there are those who feel Congress gets NOTHING (or very little) done at all.

The powers of the United States Congress are set forth in Article I, Section 8 of the United States Constitution. The constitutionally granted powers of Congress are further defined and interpreted by the rulings of the Supreme Court, and by its own rules, customs, and history. The powers explicitly defined by the Constitution are called the “enumerated” powers. Of all the powers of Congress, none is more important than its enumerated power to make laws. The Constitution sets forth the powers of Congress in specific language. It states, “Congress shall have Power … To make all Laws which shall be necessary and proper for carrying into Execution the foregoing Powers, and all other Powers vested by this Constitution in the Government of the United States, or in any Department or Officer thereof.” Laws aren’t simply conjured out of thin air, of course. In fact, the legislative process is quite involved and designed to ensure that proposed laws are given careful consideration.

In addition to the explicit powers of the Constitution, Congress also has additional implied powers derived from the Necessary and Proper Clause of the Constitution. Through the Supreme Court’s many interpretations of the Necessary and Proper Clause and the Commerce Clause—the enumerated power to regulate interstate commerce—such as McCulloch v Maryland, the true range of the lawmaking powers of Congress extends far beyond those enumerated in Section 8.

Congress can also investigate pressing national issues and it is charged with supervising and providing a balance for the executive and judicial branches. It is this power and responsibility of Congress that seems to perpetuate the feelings of Americans that Congress doesn’t get very much done. Congress seems to spend more collective time looking for issues of others in government and chasing those involved in those issues they find to “fix” them. The problem is that in these cases, those in Congress seems to forget the primary role it serves in government is “To make all laws which shall be necessary and proper for carrying into execution the foregoing powers, and all other powers vested by this Constitution in the government of the United States, or in any department or officer thereof.”

Maybe all the effort required to “make all laws” is so exhausting that members of Congress forget all the other stuff and they just continually run in circles chasing rabbits. But to most Americans, Congress seems to accomplish very little!

2017 U.S. Congress “Big” Accomplishments

In that most Americans doubt Congress does much of anything, Congressman John Shimkus (R-IL) argues that the U.S. House of Representatives is getting things done. The Congressman on his website published a list of the greatest accomplishments of Congress in 2017. Let’s look at them:

(If you want details of any of these bills, click on the hyperlink to be transferred to see the actual bill)

These ten Congressional accomplishments — according to Congressman Shimkus — are the MOST important Congressional accomplishments of 2017! Obviously, his list includes specific bills that originated in the House of Representatives and the U.S. Senate passed some bills, too. But it takes both Houses to pass bills that find their way to the President’s desk to be signed into law. Of those ten bills listed by Congressman Shimkus as THE significant legislative 2017 accomplishments, only two were actually signed into law! None of the others — including any that the U.S. Senate passed — even made it to 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue for presidential signature. Shimkus did NOT mention the tax bill that passed just before Christmas, 2017. But it did not go into effect until January 1, 2018.

Regarding U.S. Senate:

The role of the Senate was conceived by the Founding Fathers as a check on the popularly elected House of Representatives. Thus, each state, regardless of size or population, is equally represented. Further, until the Seventeenth Amendment of the Constitution (1913), election to the Senate was indirect, by the state legislatures. They are now elected directly by voters of each state.

The Senate shares with the House of Representatives responsibility for all lawmaking within the United States. For an act of Congress to be valid, both houses must approve an identical document.

The Senate is given important powers under the “advice and consent” provisions (Article II, section 2) of the Constitution: ratification of treaties requires a two-thirds majority of all senators present and a simple majority for approval of important public appointments, such as those of cabinet members, ambassadors, and judges of the Supreme Court. The Senate also adjudicates impeachment proceedings initiated in the House of Representatives, a two-thirds majority being necessary for conviction.

It was in this role that in 2017 the Senate confirmed Neil Gorsuch to the U.S. Supreme Court, replacing Justice Antonin Scalia who passed away. SCOTUS confirmations in tandem with the confirmation of several hundred other federal judges is the most critical role of the U.S. Senate. While there were numerous judicial nominees whose appointments were confirmed in 2017, the Senate finished the year with many more empty federal judgeship nominations awaiting confirmations.

U.S. Congress Operational Budget

There are 535 members of Congress: 435 in the House of Representatives and 100 members of the Senate. Obviously, each member of Congress has a support staff and offices and must operate in Washington D.C. AND in their respective districts because they represent people — voters — and therefore must interact with their constituents. Needless to say, operating this branch of the government must be REALLY expensive, right? How much does it cost to run Congress?

Getting that information should be pretty simple: one just does a Google search for “Congress annual operating budget,” right? Wrong! I tried that. I spent the better part of one hour trying to find the annual operating budget of Congress. When I searched, I found numerous links to the GOVERNMENT’S operating budget. In fact, those searches resulted in copious documentation detailing the budgets of EVERY department of the U.S. Government for every year for the last 15 years. But I found just one reference to the actual operating budget of JUST Congress. And that reference was for one year. Based on an article on Huffington Post dated 2/25/2009, the current annual operating budget is $4.4 Billion. That is roughly $8.2 Million per member of Congress. Or $3348.55 per second! That “Congress current annual operating budget” was for 2009 — 10 years ago.

$4.4 Billion sounds like a lot of money. It sounds like a lot more when it’s broken down into $8.2 Million per member. Based on “normal” U.S. Government operational practices, who thinks that $4.4 Billion number is probably quite a bit higher than the current number?

I DID find this information buried in an article: “The 2011 Legislative Branch Appropriations bill, which includes Congress’ operating budget, totaled $4.63 billion, which includes $926 million for the Senate, $1.371 billion for the House of Representatives, $337.2 million for the Capitol Police, which includes 1,800 Capitol Police officers and 393 civilians, and $147 million for the Government Printing Office.”

Summary

Americans are aghast at how little legislative work is completed in Congress. If Americans all were aware of how slim their accomplishments are, there would be a revolt. It is unfathomable that with the edicts given to members of Congress in general elections by voters, the will of voters is summarily pushed aside when Congress is gaveled into session.

In 2016, Americans gave Donald Trump an electoral landslide for the presidency. Why? Americans — with the exception of most from big coastal states and a spattering in between coasts — agreed with his policy commitments he would push through if elected. Americans forgot that a president cannot pass laws: it takes two houses in Congress to put a bill on a president’s desk to be signed into law. This Congress has done very little of that. And in doing so, Congress has (on the most part) ignored the Trump policy promises to Americans for which he was elected.

Americans know the failure to fund a border wall, defund and replace Obamacare, fix immigration laws, and cut runaway government spending have not happened — not because of President Trump, but because of Congress. Here’s Trump in a speech the day after the Senate rejected even consideration of a bill to repeal a portion of Obamacare:

He unfortunately had to make similar speeches about the failure of Congress to reform immigration laws, (and he presented a bill to Congress to do so that failed in a vote) the total funding of a southern border wall, cuts in federal spending — all of which were promises he made during the 2016 presidential campaign. None of these have been implemented. Their failed implementation is NOT the President’s fault — the fault lies at the feet of members of Congress.

House Speaker Paul Ryan (who is on his way out of Congress) has claimed famously that the House of Representatives has passed numerous bills that the Senate has failed to pass or simply refused to consider, let alone pass. But that’s just politics: every American who studies how Congress works knows that the House Speaker and Senate Majority Leader together decide which issues will be considered in each House long before they are added to the House or Senate agenda.

The lack of legislative accomplishments in this Congress is due primarily to the failures of Congressional leadership: in this case, Paul Ryan and Mitch McConnell. And their failure was with Republican majorities in both Houses WITH A REPUBLICAN PRESIDENT WAITING TO SIGN THOSE BILLS INTO LAW.

Who knows if Americans can achieve changes in Congress to break the roadblock that keeps the legislative will of voters from being actualized. Members of Congress on both sides tell their party members they simply need large majorities to achieve legislatively the will of the people.

Here is my opinion on the matter: there needs to be a unified effort on the part of American voters that does NOT rely on participation by current members of Congress or those who will run for Congress in the future. This unified effort needs to be concise, intense, and demanding of all those in office or those running, and needs to be transparent to every American.

One example of such an effort that worked dramatically was former House Speaker Newt Gingrich’s “Contract with America” that was used by G.O.P. members of Congress to push through meaningful legislative changes during the Clinton Administration. Americans rallied around that “Contract” because it was a specific group of legislative agenda items that members were each asked if they would support or not in Congress. And Americans held them responsible for not only those commitments but their votes when those items came up.

We need to see that or something similar happen again — IMMEDIATELY. It’s too late for the midterm elections. But it’s not too early to get started for 2020. Getting a document with items agreed to will not be easy. But “Anything worth having is worth hurting for.” This is definitely “worth having.” I don’t mind (and don’t think other Americans will mind) hurting a little.

Oh. One other thing: What should we  call it? Let’s hear from YOU! Comment in the home page Comments section or email me your suggestions at dan@TruthNewsNet.org.

 

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Identity Politics

We’ve heard the term “Identity Politics” tossed around by politicians and members of the media for years. But the term really became commonplace during the runup to the 2008 election of Barack Obama as President and its use expanded during his 8 years in office. And it still lives with us in everyday conversations.

What is “Identity Politics?”

Identity politics are political positions based on the interests and perspectives of social groups with which people identify. Identity politics includes the ways in which people’s politics are shaped by aspects of their identity through loosely correlated social organizations. Examples include social organizations based on age, religion, social class or caste, culture, dialect, disability, education, ethnicity, language, nationality, sex, gender identity, generation, occupation, profession, race, political party affiliation, sexual orientation, settlement, urban and rural habitation, and veteran status.

The term “identity politics” has been in use in various forms since the 1960s or 1970s, but has been applied with, at times, radically different meanings by different populations.

One aim of identity politics has been for those feeling oppressed to voice their felt oppression in terms of their own experience by a process of consciousness-raising. One of the older written examples of it can be found in the April 1977 statement of the black feminist group, Combahee River Collective, which was subsequently reprinted in a number of anthologies, and Barbara Smith and the Combahee River Collective have been credited with coining the term. For example, in their terminal statement, they said:

[A]s children we realized that we were different from boys and that we were treated different—for example, when we were told in the same breath to be quiet both for the sake of being ‘ladylike’ and to make us less objectionable in the eyes of white people. In the process of consciousness-raising, actually life-sharing, we began to recognize the commonality of our experiences and, from the sharing and growing consciousness, to build a politics that will change our lives and inevitably end our oppression….We realize that the only people who care enough about us to work consistently for our liberation are us. Our politics evolve from a healthy love for ourselves, our sisters and our community which allows us to continue our struggle and work. This focusing upon our own oppression is embodied in the concept of identity politics. We believe that the most profound and potentially most radical politics come directly out of our own identity, as opposed to working to end somebody else’s oppression.

— Zillah R. Eisenstein (1978), The Combahee River Collective Statement

Some groups have combined identity politics and Marxist social class analysis and class consciousness — the most notable example being the Black Panther Party — but this is not necessarily characteristic of the form. Another example is MOVE, members of which mixed black nationalism with anarcho-primitivism (a radical form of green politics based on the idea that civilization is an instrument of oppression, advocating the return to a hunter-gatherer society). Identity politics can be left wing or right wing, with examples of the latter being Ulster Loyalism, Islamism and Christian Identity movements.

During the 1980s, the politics of identity became very prominent and it was linked to a new wave of social movement activism.

The mid-2010s have seen a marked rise in identity politics, including white identity politics in the United States. This phenomenon is attributed to increased demographic diversity and the prospect of whites becoming a minority in America. Such shifts have driven many to affiliate with conservative causes including those not related to diversity. This includes the presidential election of Donald Trump, who won the support of prominent white supremacists such as David Duke and Richard B. Spencer (which Trump disavowed.)

Identity Politics Defined: BY LEFTISTS!

Charles W. Mills

Whose Identity Politics?

The causes of Donald Trump’s stunning electoral victory will be debated for years: FBI director James Comey’s October 28 letter about Clinton’s e-mails, her “basket of deplorables” comment, the Democratic campaign’s neglect of the Rust Belt states, and so on. But the pernicious and enduring role of identity politics was crucial.

I refer, of course, to the white racial identity politics that have shaped the United States from its birth.

Needless to say, this is neither the standard narrative nor the usual framing. For the orthodox white left, now claiming a cheerless we-told-you-so vindication, identity politics is their politics—particularistic, pandering to special interests, balkanizing; ours, of course, are supposedly very different—universalist, general-interest, unifying. Not “recognition,” but redistribution; not “identity” but material inequality; not “race,” but class.

Walter Benn Michaels

A Universe of Exploitation

The defensible heart of identity politics is its commitment to opposing forms of discrimination like racism, sexism, and homophobia. I share that commitment. But opposing discrimination today has no more to do with a left politics than do equally powerful ethical commitments against, say, violence or dishonesty. Why? Because the core of a left politics is its critique of and resistance to capitalism—its commitment to decommodifying education, health care, and housing, and creating a more economically equal society. Neither hostility to discrimination nor the accompanying enthusiasm for diversity makes the slightest contribution to accomplishing any of those goals. Just the opposite, in fact. They function instead to provide inequality with a meritocratic justification: If everyone has an equal opportunity to succeed, there’s no injustice when some people fail.

Linda Hirshman

Expanding the Circle

The call for the left to abandon its appeals to not-white-men violates the very premises of the American project. The Declaration of Independence describes a world in which “all men are created equal,” where “they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness,” and that “to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed.” Even the slaveholders’ Constitution prefaced its enterprise with the purpose of “secur[ing] the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity.” At the hearings for her confirmation to the Supreme Court in 1993, Ruth Bader Ginsburg stated it precisely. The American project started with white men’s freedom and equality and has been, for more than two centuries, all about expanding the circle to include more and more people in that blessed plot. It has almost always been the left that forces such expansions.

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The Pictures of War “IN” America

War Is Here! And it’s not just in Syria and Iraq. It is alive and thriving in the United States.

On June 30th, 2018, Joey Gibson led  Patriot Prayer through the streets of Portland Oregon on their “Freedom And Courage” march. See for yourself: (what you see in the video posted on our blog page are masked Antifa terrorists stalking and attacking peaceful protestors. They beat protestors up, knocking several to the ground and are spraying pepper spray at will)

It is hard to believe that what we see in videos almost daily is actually a war of the worst kind. It’s a war of the “worst kind” because it’s here on American shores and between Americans.

War is not new to the world. It certainly is not new to the United States. But it has been more than a century since a war that involved America and Americans actually took place on American soil. The Civil War from 1861 to 1865 was the last war to invade our borders. In that one, 600,000 Americans gave their lives fighting about slavery. It changed our nation forever — not just in putting the injustices of slavery at the top of the news for generations, but for many of those who gave their lives it meant their heritage through children and grandchildren would never be achieved, cut short by an American war. It also meant they died at the hands of other Americans. That was and still is hard to reconcile.

We may be watching that reoccur in America today.

And it’s not just ON the streets.

Get In The Faces of Cabinet Members

It’s one thing to peacefully protest. Our nation was built on that tenet of democracy. But when does “peaceful” stop and “confrontation” begin?

We forgot about the riots in Baltimore in which police were physically assaulted, there were multiple injuries of rioters and police. (we show a graphic video of Baltimore violence playing out on city streets in which regular citizens and policemen were assaulted)

It seems that the horrors that play out on the streets are important only when the media need a juicy story. And when the need for those headlines and gory video fade away, so does the reporting. The news is only important when a tragedy with death and destruction and/or police brutality are important for the “appropriate” headline, OR it could simply be turning an otherwise benign White House Oval Office meeting into a weaponized call-to-arms:

That was NBC’s recount of rapper Kanye West meeting with President Trump in the Oval Office. While NBC did not “attack” Kanye, they certainly in this story took jabs at his “40 different topics” NBC reported he brought up while speaking to the President, pointing to the fact a doctor diagnosed Kanye as bi-polar. But media attacks against Americans — like Kanye West — are rampant. And they’re NOT news stories:

CNN pundit Don Lemon used rap star Kanye West’s dead mother to attack him for his political views Thursday, saying that if his mother were still alive, she “would be embarrassed” by his White House visit with President Trump.

Lemon, who has been a constant critic of the President, took umbrage at West’s appearance in the Oval Office as a new music licensing law was signed. “I have no animosity for Kanye West,” Lemon said on CNN. “I’m just going to be honest and I may get in a lot of trouble for it. I actually feel bad for him. What I saw was a minstrel show today. Him in front of all these white people, mostly white people, embarrassing himself and embarrassing Americans, but mostly African-Americans, because every one of them is sitting either at home or with their phones, watching this, cringing.”

“Kanye needs help, this has nothing to do with being liberal or a conservative. We have to stop pretending… like this is normal,” Lemon said.

CNN actually hosted a panel discussion about Kanye’s meeting with the President in which one political pundit called Kanye President Trump’s “token Negro.”

In the African American community, “them’s fightin’ words!” Wait…the pundit who called Kanye Trump’s “token Negro” WAS A BLACK PERSON!

What Is War?

OK: We’ve taken the easy way to open this conversation about War. We need to get to the “nitty-gritty:” What IS War?

Cicero defines war broadly as “a contention by force;” Hugo Grotius adds that “war is the state of contending parties.” Thomas Hobbes notes that war is also an attitude: “By war is meant a state of affairs, which may exist even while its operations are not continued;” Denis Diderot comments that war is “a convulsive and violent disease of the body politic;” for Karl von Clausewitz, “war is the continuation of politics by other means,” and so on. Each definition has its strengths and weaknesses, but often is the culmination of the writer’s broader philosophical positions.

For example, the notion that wars only involve states — as Clausewitz implies — references a strong political theory that assumes politics can only involve states and that war is in some manner or form a reflection of political activity. ‘War’ defined by Webster’s Dictionary is a state of open and declared hostile armed conflict between states or nations, or a period of such conflict. This maintains that war needs to be explicitly declared and to be between states to be a war. Rousseau argues this position: “War is constituted by a relation between things, and not between persons…War then is a relation, not between man and man, but between State and State…” (The Social Contract).

When Does Confrontation Become War?

That’s a good question. And Confrontation does not easily become War. There’s NO easy answer, but answer it we must.

Comparing what we are watching today to other times of conflict on U.S. soil may seem unreasonable to some. After all, we DID have the National Guard gun down rioters at Kent State during the Vietnam conflict. Those were protests that became violent riots. Barack Obama’s mentor William Ayers with his girlfriend Bernadette Dorn of the terrorist group Weather Underground bombed a police station and a policeman was killed. Is it safe for us to allege we’re facing something similar today?

Let’s think that through together:

  • Congressman Steve Scalise (R-LA) was gunned down at a baseball practice of GOP House members in Washington D.C. by a nutjob who was actually there to do just that — kill Republican members of Congress;
  • Rioters in Portland and Berkeley have on several occasions razed businesses, injured private citizens during riots, attacked others, all in the name of Anti-fascism when in fact they are the fascists they say they are fighting!
  • The recent Baltimore riots morphed into violence that resulted in personal injuries for civilians AND police as well as immense damage to personal property.

When will it be appropriate to call what we are seeing “War?”

One might say that watching Leftist politicians instruct their political adherents to “get in the faces of Administration employees and tell them they’re not welcome here,” or to “drive them out of restaurants and gas stations,” or to stand next to their tables in restaurants threatening them is all simply peaceful and legal political demonstrating.

But isn’t all of the above when put in total a type of inciting to riot? “Inciting to riot” is against the law.

Against the Law?

Saying that some of these actions are “against the law” is a joke: we don’t enforce laws — or quite a few of them. Rahm Emanuel — mayor of Chicago — is watching as every weekend dozens of Chicagoans are slaughtered on the streets. That’s been happening for several years. Yet Rahm simply allows it to continue and even restricts Chicago police, preventing them from taking measures that are necessary to stop the killing.

Isn’t that Anarchy?

“Anarchy: Absence of any cohesive principle, such as a common standard or purpose.”

I totally agree with those that say that Chicago is stricken with “the absence of any cohesive principle, such as a common standard or purpose.” A mayor of a city should always keep and maintain a common standard and purpose — if nothing else, to assure the safety of his city’s residents!

Summary

What scares me for my grandchildren is the ever-growing benign acceptance of American leaders of this anarchy, rioting, and terrorization of American citizens that virtually goes unchecked. Maybe they allow it with some hope that it will get so bad it will force Americans to make political changes that those leaders want. Barack Obama himself made it clear he wanted to lead “in the fundamental change of America.” America is fundamentally changing — that’s for certain. But these changes are NOT for the better.

When political leaders stand in front of voters and constituents and instruct those listening to aggressively confront those with whom they hold political differences, are those leaders so blind as to think numbering among all who listen are NOT a few who take those cries literally? Maxine Waters did not only cry with a bullhorn for voters to aggressively confront Trump Administration members on the street, in restaurants, and even in gas stations, she has since doubled and tripled down on her instructions!

Over a year ago on this blog site, I told all who looked in what the difference between Liberals and Conservatives is. I’ll repeat it here for all of you:

“Conservatives don’t like what Liberals stand for. Liberals HATE Conservatives.”

Hatred goes a long way toward inciting anger and violence. Violence goes a long way toward the incitement of terror, bombing, and physical assault. Terror, bombings, and assault are a pre-cursor to War.

I’m not trying to scare everyone here. But on the eve of the midterm elections, we MUST be mindful of who we vote for. Whoever wins these elections will collectively be in positions of leading America into the ratcheting-down of this angry rhetoric that is inciting violence. If we’re not watchful; if we do NOT vote and vote our hearts; if we allow the leaders of these violent Leftists to assume or maintain leadership, we will inevitably slide into a war on American soil.

We are NOT far from that now.

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It’s Coming!

It’s getting pretty crazy in America. We are seeing not just anger and hostility from the Left, we are even closer to the “W” word since the war in Iraq. 

Tomorrow we are revealing evidence of war “in” America. It’s not pretty, it’s not fun to talk about either. But if we don’t talk about it and ignore its signs, when it explodes we’ll be too late to confront and stop it. 

What’s scariest is if it materializes it will be war between Americans. 

Make sure you have your email registered to get the link to the story “The Pictures of War ‘IN’ America” early Tuesday morning. Log your email on the home page to receive a link to every story or podcast when they go live. 

It’s getting serious, Folks. 

The Salty Sailor

Sometimes God uses the no-nonsense, salty sailor to get the job done.  Appreciating what the man is doing doesn’t mean we worship the salty sailor or even desire to be like the salty sailor.  It doesn’t even mean God admires the salty sailor.  Maybe He just knows he’s necessary for such a time as this.
I believe with all my heart that God placed that salty sailor in the White House to give this nation one more chance in November 2016.  Donald Trump is what he is – and he is still the man he was before the election – and without guilt. I very much admire what that salty sailor is accomplishing.

He’s not like me.  That’s okay with me.  I don’t want to be like him.  I will never behave like him.  I know we’ve NEVER had a man like him lead our nation before.  It’s crazy and a little mind blowing at times.  But I can’t help admire the stamina and ability he has – acting with his heart rather than a calculated, PC, think tank-screened, carefully edited script.  I still believe that is WHY he became our President and WHY he’s been able to handle a landslide of adversity and STILL pass unprecedented amounts of good legislation for our country AND do great works for MANY other nations, including Israel.

I’m THRILLED with what he’s doing for my nation, for the cause of Christ (whether intentional or unintentional, doesn’t matter to me), and for the concept of rebuilding America and putting her FIRST.  I will not be ashamed of my position because others don’t see him through the same lens.

Should it matter to me if a fireman drops an f-bomb while he’s pulling me from a burning building?  Would I really care about what came out of his mouth in those moments?  Heck no!  I’d CARE about what he was DOING.  He wasn’t sent there to save my soul and I’m not looking to him for spiritual guidance.  All I’m thinking in those moments is, “Thank you, GOD, for sending the fireman.” AND DONALD TRUMP IS OUR FIREMAN.

I’ll soon post this article again for those who still might not understand me.  This man is crass.  Okay.  He’s not careful with what he says.  Okay.  You feel offended that he’s not a typical statesman.  Okay.  But he is DOING THE JOB of rebuilding the nation my son died for…  the nation I feared was on a fast track to becoming a hopeless cause.

 

Forgive me if I’m smiling.

Written by

KAREN VAUGHN

Roe v. Wade: Here Today, Maybe Gone Tomorrow Part III

As promised, we begin today’s chapter with a segment of Margaret Sanger’s own writings on her opinions of birth control that include eugenics, abortion, and infanticide. Her ideas were startling, dramatic, and openly unspeakable in her time. Her establishment of the original Planned Parenthood organization was her effort to bring her birth control and pre-birth termination philosophies into the Mainstream in the U.S. This did that and much more.

BIRTH CONTROL OR ABORTION?

By Margaret Sanger: December 3, 1918: In her own words

Family limitation will be practiced. No law has yet been framed that can prevent it. The church has been powerless and the champions of worn-out moral creeds find themselves trying in vain to force all women to become mothers against their wills.
Abundant evidence of the futility of seeking to impose involuntary motherhood upon women is found in the size of the families of the rich, of the well-to-do and of the wage workers of larger earning capacity. The women of these classes long ago refused to be mere brood animals–-usually, they prefer to be voluntary mothers, determining for themselves the number of children they shall have and when they shall have them. Family limitation for them is an accomplished fact.
It is also an accomplished fact with many of the wives of the less highly paid workers. But with the latter, as well as with some of their more fortunate sisters, family limitation takes a far more drastic and too often a terribly dangerous course. The awakened woman of today will not bear unwanted children. She will not bear more children than she can care for. And if she is denied the knowledge of the safe, harmless, scientific methods of Birth Control, she limits her family by means of abortion.
In the very nature of the case, it is impossible to get accurate figures upon the number of abortions performed annually in the United States. It is often said, however, that one in five pregnancies end in abortion. One estimate is that 150,000 occur in the United States each year and that 25,000 women die of the effects of such operations in every twelve months. Dr. William J. Robinson asserts that there are 1,000,000 abortions every year in this country and adds that the estimate is conservative. He quotes Justice John Proctor Clark as saying that there are at least 100,000 in the same length of time in New York City alone. Dr. Max Hirsch, a famous authority quotes an opinion that there are 2,000,000 abortions in the United States every year! “I believe” declares Dr. Hirsch, “that I may say without exaggeration that absolutely spontaneous or unprovoked abortions are extremely rare, that a vast majority–I should estimate it at 80 percent–have a criminal origin.”

“Our examinations have informed us that the largest number of abortions are performed on married women. This fact brings us to the conclusion that contraceptive measures among the upper classes and the practice of abortion among the lower class are the real means employed to regulate the number of offspring.”

The question, then, is not whether family limitation should be practiced. It is being practiced; it has long been practiced and it will always be practiced. The question now is whether it is to be attained by normal, scientific Birth Control methods or by the abnormal, often dangerous, surgical operation. That is the question which the church, the state, the moralist and most of all, the woman herself, must face. The knowledge of Birth Control methods may for a time be denied to the woman of the working class, but those who are responsible for denying it to her, and she herself, should understand clearly the dangers to which she is exposed by the dark age laws which force her into the hands of the abortionist. To understand the more clearly what these dangers are, and to realize the more fully how much better it would be to avoid them, it is first necessary that women should know something of the processes of conception, the prevention of which frees them of all risk of having to resort to abortion.

There is no doubt that women are apt to look upon abortion as of little consequence and to treat it accordingly. An abortion is as important a matter as a confinement and requires as much attention as the birth of a child at its full term.
“The immediate dangers of abortion,” says Dr. J. Clifton Edgar, in his book “The Practice of Obstetrics,” “are hemorrhage, retention of an adherent placenta, sepsis, tetanus, perforation of the uterus. They also cause sterility, anemia, malignant diseases, displacements, neurosis, and endometritis.”

In plain, everyday language, in an abortion, there is always a very serious risk to the health and often to the life of the patient. It is only the women of wealth who can afford to give an abortion proper care and treatment both at the time of the operation and afterward. These women often escape any serious consequences from its occurrence. The women whose incomes are limited and who must continue at work before they have recovered from the effects of an abortion are the great army of sufferers. It is among such that the deaths due to abortion usually ensue. It is these, too, who are most often forced to resort to such operations.

Sanger couched her teachings in the thoughts regarding birth control. As you read in Chapters I and II, birth control itself and even public discussions of birth control were actually illegal in the U.S. in the early 1900’s. Then doctors were allowed to discuss birth control privately with patients. Abortions were rampant, (see numbers listed below in Sanger’s own writings) but their numbers were kept hidden and were just projections rather than actual. But it is fair to say there were millions of abortions before Roe v. Wade made abortions legal throughout the U.S. and states could no longer block them.

Proof or Conjecture?

The stories surrounding Planned Parenthood and its work today are many and varied. Just as is the case of the history of Margaret Sanger and her work, these Planned Parenthood stories contain claims and acknowledgment of abortions performed and other services that range from one spectrum to the opposite.

Getting factual verification of Planned Parenthood’s real intentions is extremely difficult. “Facts” are everywhere and are all over the place. But the determination of its primary purpose for existence is fairly easy to do: “Follow the Money.” Here from Planned Parenthood is their actual “Money In — Money Out” report for five years: (click on the link to see or download)

PPSTATS5YRS

Looking at their income shown this report, American taxpayers funded $2.72 Billion for the previous 5 years.

We leave it to you to examine their numbers of cases and dollars allocated to those. However, here are some thoughts to ponder:

  •  1,628,550 abortions funded and provided for in years 2011-2016
  • There are 665 total Planned Parenthood Centers that provide federally funded women’s health services
  • Planned Parenthood offers services to 2.4 million people a year
  • That 2.4 million number includes women, men, and children
  • Planned Parenthood administered 321,384 abortions in 2017.

According to Planned Parenthood’s own numbers, if the $500 million in taxpayer funds per year were NOT funded, the already existing over 13,000+ non-abortion providing Federally Qualified Health Center (FQHC) service sites and Rural Health Clinics (RHCs) with fewer taxpayer dollars could easily and more effectively continue to provide comprehensive primary and preventive health care to even more people than the 665 Planned Parenthood centers do today.

Controversy

The videos provided by hidden cameras the last few years in which Planned Parenthood personnel discuss how they negotiate prices for baby body parts that result from abortions. Apparently, this practice is common among their healthcare centers. This practice is not only reprehensible, but it is also illegal. Planned Parenthood announced after several of these secret videos became public they have suspended the practice of selling baby body parts obtained by abortions.

Summary

I think it is safe to say that Planned Parenthood was established, operated initially, and operates today to chiefly provide birth control and abortions primarily to federally funded individuals. Our understanding is that Planned Parenthood bills Medicaid for services provided by their clinics for patients who are Medicaid eligible. They even will retroactively enroll those not already enrolled in Medicaid to get their procedures performed before acceptance into Medicaid are paid for. This money paid through Medicaid is in addition to the money already paid to Planned Parenthood by the federal government as part of grants.

So is Planned Parenthood an entity that exists primarily to perform abortions for economically disadvantaged people? Are all (or some) of these abortions performed simply to stop the generational proliferation of “undesirables” as Margaret Sanger spoke of in her early writings? Or is Planned Parenthood operating to primarily offer healthcare information, advice, birth control, and disease testing from low-income Americans?

Oddly enough, abortion’s political discussion reaches to even to the United States Supreme Court. Senior Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg weighed in more than a decade ago, saying, “Frankly,” said Ginsburg in July 2009, “I had thought that at the time Roe was decided, there was concern about population growth and particularly growth in populations that we don’t want to have too many of. So that Roe was going to be then set up for Medicaid funding for abortion. The great added blessing of Roe: Not only could it give women the “right” to abortion, but it could open the way for the federal government, via Medicaid, to fund abortions of children in undesired populations.” (There’s that “undesirable” reference again — this time from a U.S. Supreme Court Justice)

That assessment by Ginsburg was provided in a July 7, 2009 piece in the New York Times Magazine, titled, “The Place of Women on the Court.” And for 25 years, succeeding a pro-life justice named Byron White, Ruth Bader Ginsburg has held the Planned Parenthood seat on the nation’s high court, where she has fought for the hopes and dreams of Margaret Sanger’s organization. In fact, she has done so in ways more in keeping with Sanger than liberals would care to admit. Sanger wanted Planned Parenthood, whose clinics are disproportionately located near African-American neighborhoods, to achieve precisely what Ginsburg alluded to. There were certain populations that Sanger badly didn’t want too many of.

The Department of Health and Human Services’ decision to change Title X federal funding rules and stop subsidizing businesses that provide abortions is drawing widespread praise from the faith community. The rule, which previously was in place under President Reagan, is simple: The hundreds of millions of dollars of annual Title X funding will go only to family planning centers that don’t provide or refer for abortion. That means all of the abortion businesses that have received federal funding and used it for rent, maintenance, staffing, utilities, and advertising – but not actual abortion costs – will be left out. The proposal, after a time of public comment, will become final. The change is being filed with the Office of Management and Budget to “ensure compliance” with laws that prohibit federal funds from going toward abortions. Tax dollars spent on family planning services, including birth control, STD testing and cancer screenings will not be cut, officials said. But the change will drop a requirement that Title X grant recipients provide abortion counseling to patients.

I think it is highly doubtful that in the Planned Parenthood discussions we will ever agree on exactly what the organization is actually doing: apparently all of the above, or at least in part. Whether or not the U.S. government should be involved with direct funding is an entirely different question.

Please note in this discussion, we have not attacked abortions, those who have had abortions or been a part of abortions, nor discussed the pros and cons of the practice. Abortions have existed in humanity for as long as women and men have existed. My guess is the population is close to evenly split between supporting and rejecting abortions in society. For every person who adamantly supports abortion, there is a person who is adamantly against abortion.

Politics, unfortunately, plays a major role in this discussion, primarily because of federal funding.

In closing, there are several questions regarding abortion that have yet to be answered:

  1. According to Roe v. Wade’s Supreme Court interpretation, American women cannot be prevented from having abortions. Should abortions be underwritten by federal tax dollars?
  2. When does life begin: at conception or at birth?
  3. What happens if at some point scientists prove factually that life begins at conception and that all the abortions have (as defined by law) actually been taking a life?
  4. If life doesn’t begin until birth, why don’t those who are pregnant say “I’m having a fetus” instead of “I’m having a baby?”

Everyone in this discussion has an opinion. Those with opinions have the freedom to share their opinions with everyone.

I wonder (if they could speak) what the fetus (or baby) would have to say about abortion if they were given a chance?

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Roe v. Wade: Here Today, Maybe Gone Tomorrow — Part II

Yesterday in Part I we began the discussion about abortion in America. But what we have yet to discuss is who the players were in establishing abortion in the U.S. and its current perspectives among Americans. Margaret Sanger was the founder of Planned Parenthood that is the purveyor of most of the abortions performed in America today. The organization has come under scrutiny the past few years as members of its clinic management have been caught on tape discussing disposal of aborted fetuses.

But let’s not go down that road in this discussion. Let’s first get a glimpse of who Margaret Sanger really was.

The Founder

If you conduct an internet search titled “Margaret Sanger,” many stories pop up. One of the first is her published biography from biography.com. The biography of Sanger from that site appears below. It’s important to remember this version as we move forward:

Born Margaret Higgins on September 14, 1879, in Corning, New York, Margaret Sanger was one of 11 children born into a Roman Catholic working-class Irish American family. Her mother, Anne, had several miscarriages, and Margaret believed that all of these pregnancies took a toll on her mother’s health and contributed to her early death at the age of 40 (some reports say 50). The family lived in poverty as her father, Michael, an Irish stonemason, preferred to drink and talk politics than earn a steady wage.

Seeking a better life, Sanger attended Claverack College and Hudson River Institute in 1896. She went on to study nursing at White Plains Hospital four years later. In 1902, she married William Sanger, an architect. The couple eventually had three children together.

Sanger started her campaign to educate women about sex in 1912 by writing a newspaper column called “What Every Girl Should Know.” She also worked as a nurse on the Lower East Side, at the time a predominantly poor immigrant neighborhood. Through her work, Sanger treated a number of women who had undergone back-alley abortions or tried to self-terminate their pregnancies. Sanger objected to the unnecessary suffering endured by these women, and she fought to make birth control information and contraceptives available. She also began dreaming of a “magic pill” to be used to control pregnancy. “No woman can call herself free until she can choose consciously whether she will or will not be a mother,” Sanger said.

Rather than face a possible five-year jail sentence, Sanger fled to England. While there, she worked in the women’s movement and researched other forms of birth control, including diaphragms, which she later smuggled back into the United States. She had separated from her husband by this time, and the two later divorced. Embracing the idea of free love, Sanger had affairs with psychologist Havelock Ellis and writer H. G. Wells.

Sanger returned to the United States in October 1915, after charges against her had been dropped. She began touring to promote birth control, a term that she coined. In 1916, she opened the first birth control clinic in the United States. Sanger and her staff, including her sister Ethel, were arrested during a raid of the Brooklyn clinic nine days after it opened. They were charged with providing information on contraception and fitting women for diaphragms. Sanger and her sister spent 30 days in jail for breaking the Comstock law. Later appealing her conviction, she scored a victory for the birth control movement. The court wouldn’t overturn the earlier verdict, but it made an exception in the existing law to allow doctors to prescribe contraception to their female patients for medical reasons. Around this time, Sanger also published her first issue of The Birth Control Review. In 1921, Sanger established the American Birth Control League, a precursor to today’s Planned Parenthood Federation of America. She served as its president until 1928. In 1923, while with the league, she opened the first legal birth control clinic in the United States. The clinic was named the Birth Control Clinical Research Bureau. Also around this time, Sanger married for her second husband, oil businessman J. Noah H. Slee. He provided much of the funding for her efforts for social reform. Wanting to advance her cause through legal channels, Sanger started the National Committee on Federal Legislation for Birth Control in 1929. The committee sought to make it legal for doctors to freely distribute birth control. One legal hurdle was overcome in 1936 when the U.S. Court of Appeals allowed for birth control devices and related materials to be imported into the country.For all of her advocacy work, Sanger was not without controversy. She has been criticized for her association with eugenics, a branch of science that seeks to improve the human species through selective mating. As grandson Alexander Sanger, chair of the International Planned Parenthood Council, explained, “She believed that women wanted their children to be free of poverty and disease, that women were natural eugenicists, and that birth control, which could limit the number of children and improve their quality of life, was the panacea to accomplish this.” Still, Sanger held some views that were common at the time, but now seem abhorrent, including support of sterilization for the mentally ill and mentally impaired. Despite her controversial comments, Sanger focused her work on one basic principle: “Every child should be a wanted child.”
That biography of Sanger seems fairly benign — especially in light of much of what we have “heard” about Sanger through the years as detailed by Pro-Life advocates. There are other accounts of Sanger’s history that contradict much of what you just read. Here’s a version that throughout includes quotes from Sanger herself:

(Anne Barbeau Gardiner) In her works Woman and the New Race, Pivot of Civilization, and My Fight for Birth Control, Margaret Sanger offers a range of justifications for killing “unwanted children.” This is no surprise considering how she reacts when she witnesses an act of violence against an infant: “I saw a sickly baby in the arms of a terrified woman whose drunken husband had thrown the wailing, naked infant into the snow,” she recounts, and “I remember having keen sympathy with that man!” His wife had given birth to eleven children, six of them living, and the last “evidently had eczema” and “whined night and day,” so the situation was just “too much” for the father, and “out of the door into the snow the nuisance went!” The justification Sanger offers is purely subjective: “desperate for want of sleep and quiet,” the father’s “nerves overcame him.”

Infanticide is simply ridding oneself of an intolerable “nuisance.” This passage demonstrates Sanger’s pitiless view of nascent life and shows how fitting it is that she should be the founder of Planned Parenthood, today the chief purveyor of abortions in the United States. In another place she remarks, “The most merciful thing that the large family does to one of its infant members is to kill it.” She is remembered for her fight to legalize birth control, but a close reading of Sanger’s work shows that she saw birth control, abortion, and infanticide as differing only in degree, not in kind. They were points on the same continuum.

Sanger tells of a recurring nightmare of hers: she dreamed that “mechanical, automaton-like crowds were walking, walking, walking, always in the opposite direction” to her and crowding her to the curb, and then suddenly these people turned into “mice; they even smelt like mice.” The dream reveals her sense of superiority to the masses, who turn out to be vermin. When she sets up the Clinical Research Bureau in Brooklyn, she observes pointedly that she will be using people instead of mice: it will be “a nucleus for research, a laboratory, as it were, dealing with human beings instead of with white mice.”  She refers to the Chinese as breeding “with the rapidity and irresponsibility of flies” and compares most American women to cattle, asking if “any modern stockbreeder” would “permit the deterioration of his livestock” as Americans permit and even “encourage” the deterioration of their race by misguided charities.

In 1871, Darwin tried to show, in his Descent of Man, that humans did not differ fundamentally from beasts and that human morality had evolved from the social instincts of brutes. Between 1871 and 1930, a Darwinist worldview arose in Europe, according to which humans should be bred like animals for the sake of evolutionary progress, and “the destruction of the less well-endowed” be encouraged to “win space for the expansion” of superior stock. This was Margaret Sanger’s worldview; witness her frequent use of the word unfit for those she thought should be sterilized, aborted, or left to die.

In her campaign for birth control, Sanger spoke of “the evolution of birth control from infanticide, through abortion, to modern methods of scientific and harmless prevention.” But since birth control was supposed to replace infanticide and abortion in her scheme, it had to be foolproof. She tells us that women around 1920 were constantly asking her, regarding birth control, “Is it certain? Will it prevent absolutely?” “Yes,” she would answer, “there are sure methods, and the doubts raised about the certainty of contraceptives come from uninformed doctors and neighbors.”
Although the law, she added, forbade her to name the failsafe methods, she could say that they had “stood the test of certainty” in Holland, France, England, and even among the wealthy in the United States; witness their falling birthrates in the past quarter-century.
After giving such unqualified assurances to women during the 1920s, Sanger flatly contradicts herself in My Fight for Birth Control in 1931. Now she admits that the “need for reliable methods has been far greater and more extended than the ability on the part of the medical profession or science to supply them” and that “biologists and biochemists are now at work perfecting the science of contraception.”  So birth control offers no absolute “certainty” after all. So what happens when contraceptives fail and women are faced–to use Sanger’s term–with “involuntary motherhood?” She explains that “nearly all” working-class women fall into two groups in such a crisis: the first group will “find refuge in abortion,” while the second will be “hopelessly” resigned. The better choice, she declares, is abortion, for those “in whom the feminine urge to freedom is strongest choose the abortionist,” while the others bring children to birth “hoping that they will be born dead or die.” Thus, according to Sanger, nearly all working-class women wish their unborn children dead, but only some of them act on that wish. She approves heartily of those who choose abortion because she says they follow an irresistible “urge” to guard their liberty: women are driven to defy “church and state,” she exclaims, by “the strongest force” in their nature, by an “absolute, elemental, inner urge” of the “feminine spirit.”
That seems to be a bit different from the bio above taken from biography.com. But there are many other versions of Sanger’s life including this from Stella Morabito, a well-known senior contributor at The Federalist. In the first sentence of this article, Morabito uses the word “eugenicist” describing Sanger. To better understand Sanger and her prespective on this topic, here’s the definition of Eugenics: the study of or belief in the possibility of improving the qualities of the human species or a human population, especially by such means as discouraging reproduction by persons having genetic defects or presumed to have inheritable undesirable traits (negative eugenics) or encouraging reproduction by persons presumed to have inheritable desirable traits (positive eugenics).”

 

(Stella Morabito) The passionate eugenicist (Sanger) wished to rid America of its “idiots” and “imbeciles” and “morons” as part of her crowning vision for “race improvement.” The Planned Parenthood matron lamented America’s “race of degenerates.” The nation’s landscape needed to be purged of its “human weeds” and “the dead weight of human waste.” Sanger shared the view of humanity held by another Supreme Court progressive icon, Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes, who declared that “three generations of imbeciles are enough.”
Margaret Sanger maintained that “the most urgent problem today is how to limit and discourage the over-fertility of the mentally and physically defective.” Progressives today dare not speak of Sanger’s May 1926 speech to a rally of the women’s branch of the KKK in Silverlake, New Jersey, or of her work on the “Negro Project,” or of her December 10, 1939 letter to Dr. Clarence Gamble, stating (in a statement disputed by liberals): “We do not want word to go out that we want to exterminate the Negro population.”
America, according to Planned Parenthood’s founder, must limit these lamentable populations, and she was willing to take big steps to make that happen, including a special kind of segregation. In her 1922 book, The Pivot of Civilization, Sanger urged that “every feeble-minded girl or woman of the hereditary type, especially of the moron class, should be segregated during the reproductive period. Otherwise, she is almost certain to bear imbecile children, who in turn are just as certain to breed other defectives.” But even then, this surely wasn’t enough: “Segregation carried out for one or two generations would give us only partial control of the problem.” What to do then? Well, if a nudge wouldn’t work, then coercion would: “we prefer the policy of immediate sterilization, of making sure that parenthood is absolutely prohibited to the feeble-minded.”
These “defective delinquents” were a “menace.” America needed to “become fully cognizant of the burden of the imbecile upon the whole human race.” Funds should be made available, she counseled in 1922, “by hundreds of millions of dollars, to the care and segregation of men, women, and children who never should have been born.”

How grand it would be if Uncle Sam could fund the means to limit the reproduction of these unsavory populations. After Sanger’s death, her legacy lived on in Planned Parenthood.

Fast forward to the 1990s, the era of the Clintons. In 1992, Ron Weddington, one of the abortion attorneys in the Roe v. Wade decision, fired off a letter to Bill Clinton urging sharper measures to limit the birth of America’s defectives: “You can start immediately to eliminate the barely educated, unhealthy and poor segment of our country,” wrote Weddington. “The problem is that their numbers are not only replaced but increased by the birth of millions of babies to people who can’t afford to have babies.” For an example of responsible reproduction, Ron Weddington pointed to Bill and Hillary. He told the president-elect: “You and Hillary are a perfect example. Could either of you have gone to law school and achieved anything close to what you have if you had three or four more children before you were 20? No! You waited until you were established in your 30s to have one child. That is what sensible people do.…”

“It’s time to officially recognize that people are going to have sex and what we need to do as a nation is prevent as much disease and as many poor babies as possible. Condoms alone won’t do it. Depo-Provera, Norplant and the new birth control injection being developed in India are not a complete answer…. Even if we make birth control as ubiquitous as sneakers and junk food, there will still be unplanned pregnancies. Thus, the ongoing need for abortion — lots and lots of it — to reduce the undesirables.” Weddington personally had done his part, boasting to Clinton: “I was co-counsel in Roe v. Wade, [and] have sired zero children and one fetus, the abortion of which was recently recounted by my ex-wife in her book.… I had a vasectomy in 1969 and have never had one moment of regret.” Ron and his wife, Sarah, divorced, bequeathing their gift to the world: zero-population growth (and one aborted baby) from their marriage. Ron must have felt slighted when Planned Parenthood feted his wife (but not him) with its highest honor, its coveted Sanger Award — a grace also bestowed on Bill Clinton’s wife, Hillary Rodham Clinton.
And most of all, Weddington must have been thrilled when Bill Clinton nominated Ruth Bader Ginsburg to the high court the next year. Ruth seemed to be channeling Ron as well as the ghost of Maggie Sanger when she preached the no-population-growth gospel to the New York Times in July 2009: “we don’t want too many of them types.”

Summary

What we see in today’s story is the drastic differences in the related history of Margaret Sanger: total difference analysis by these different historian writers. Why is that?

I’m not going to answer that question today. What we ARE going to do is prepare you for “Roe v. Wade: Here Today, Maybe Gone Tomorrow — Part III” tomorrow. It will be the wrap-up of this story and will consist almost entirely of Sanger’s own words without any writer narrative added. It will include the when, how, and why of her establishment of Planned Parenthood as it looked when it began operations and how it looks today. We’ll also add some statistics, some of which will startle you.

Finally, in tomorrow’s summary, you’ll receive some personal analysis of this entire matter: abortion in America. It will be totally perspective and opinion. We do that from time to time here. But when we do, you are always informed that it is opinion. We’re all entitled to that.

Thanks for being here!

Dan

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Roe v. Wade: Here Today, Maybe Gone Tomorrow — Part I

The Brett Kavanaugh hoopla of the past few weeks has re-lit the fires of the abortion debate. The Drive-by media along with others on the left propped up the false narrative in attacking the Supreme Court nominee that if confirmed, he would “probably” cast the deciding vote in any case before the Court regarding the overturn of Roe v. Wade. That threat rang totally hollow to those who understand the law and exactly what Roe did: it simply ruled in an appealed lower court finding allowing states to prohibit abortions. Roe v Wade with SCOTUS confirmation means that states do NOT have that right.

The truth about an overturn of Roe is this: should that ever occur, in doing so the Court is NOT prohibiting abortion, rather simply returning the right of the legality of abortion to the states. Abortions would remain legal in states that deemed it to be legal.

TNN is going to take this time of discussing abortion to look at its American roots. That means Planned Parenthood (PP) and its founder, too. There are many questions about PP’s purpose in its establishment and current operations: especially in light of taxpayer-funded grants from the federal government of about $500 million per year. 

This examination will be fact-based, will contain actual words from PP’s founder on the subject, and will look at statistics. We do NOT tell our partners what to think, rather give different facts for use in establishing educated positions on important issues. There is no doubt abortion in America is an important issue.

This story is a multiple chapter, fact-finding mission. Today we detail just how abortion came to be so common and so in demand in the U.S. 

Throughout this study, you will see and hear stories from medical professionals and from several who have experienced abortion personally. In tomorrow’s offering — Chapter II — you will meet Planned Parenthood’s founder and will read and hear from her personal writings her perspective on birth control, abortion, and even infanticide. 

None of this is for political purposes. There is no agenda here. This is to shine a light on every aspect of abortion, trying to keep it as emotionless as possible.

It is very difficult to think and speak objectively when emotions run so high in such a conversation. We at TruthNewsNet.org know just how great an issue abortion is. We can only imagine how many Americans have experienced all that accompanies abortion. But one thing we DO know: it affects millions, impacts millions more, and is probably the most contentious political issue in the U.S. today. To that end, it is important that ALL understand every aspect of such a critical issue so as to make informed decisions if and whenever faced with abortion personally, in one’s family, or among friends or relatives. 

Abortion’s American Origins and Stated Purposes

During the 1800s, all surgical procedures, including abortion, were extremely risky. Hospitals were not common, antiseptics were unknown, and even the most respected doctors had only primitive medical educations. Without today’s current technology, maternal and infant mortality rates during childbirth were extraordinarily high. The dangers from abortion were similar to the dangers from other surgeries that were not outlawed.

As scientific methods began to dominate medical practice, and technologies were developed to prevent infection, medical care, on the whole, became much safer and more effective. But by this time, the vast majority of women who needed abortions had no choice but to get them from illegal practitioners without these medical advances at their disposal. The “back alley” abortion remained a dangerous, often deadly procedure, while areas of legally sanctioned medicine improved dramatically.

The strongest force behind the drive to criminalize abortion was the attempt by doctors to establish for themselves exclusive rights to practice medicine. They wanted to prevent “untrained” practitioners, including midwives, apothecaries, and homeopaths, from competing with them for patients and for patient fees.

The best way to accomplish their goal was to eliminate one of the principal procedures that kept these competitors in business. Rather than openly admitting to such motivations, the newly formed American Medical Association (AMA) argued that abortion was both immoral and dangerous. By 1910 all but one state had criminalized abortion except where necessary, in a doctor’s judgment, to save the woman’s life. In this way, legal abortion was successfully transformed into a “physicians-only” practice.

The prohibition of legal abortion from the 1880s until 1973 came under the same anti-obscenity or Comstock laws that prohibited the dissemination of birth control information and services.

Criminalization of abortion did not reduce the numbers of women who sought abortions. In the years before Roe v. Wade, the estimates of illegal abortions ranged as high as 1.2 million per year. Although accurate records could not be kept, it is known that between the 1880s and 1973, many thousands of women were harmed as a result of illegal abortion.

Between 1967 and 1973 one-third of the states liberalized or repealed their criminal abortion laws. However, the right to have an abortion in all states was only made available to American women in 1973 when the Supreme Court struck down the remaining restrictive state laws with its ruling in Roe v. Wade.

The Roe case arose out of a Texas law that prohibited legal abortion except to save a woman’s life. At that time, most other states had laws similar to the one in Texas. Those laws forced large numbers of women to resort to illegal abortions.

Jane Roe, a 21-year-old pregnant woman, represented all women who wanted abortions but could not get them legally and safely. Henry Wade was the Texas Attorney General who defended the law that made abortions illegal.

After hearing the case, the Supreme Court ruled that Americans’ right to privacy included the right of a woman to decide whether to have children and the right of a woman and her doctor to make that decision without state interference.

After Roe v. Wade

The reaction to Roe was swift. Supporters of legal abortion rejoiced and generally felt their battle was won. However, others faulted the Court for the decision. Those opposed to legal abortion immediately began working to prevent any federal or state funding for abortion and to undermine or limit the effect of the decision.

Some turned to measures directly aimed at disrupting clinics where abortions were being provided. Their tactics have included demonstrating in front of abortion clinics, harassing people trying to enter, vandalizing clinic property, and blocking access to clinics.

As time passed, the level of anti-abortion violence escalated. Increasingly, clinic bombings, physical attacks, and even murders endanger abortion providers and create a hostile environment for women seeking abortions.

Abortion: Second Thoughts

Initially, the framework of Roe v. Wade was the basis by which the constitutionality of state abortion laws was determined. In recent years, however, the Supreme Court has begun to allow more restrictions on abortion.

For instance, the Supreme Court’s ruling in Planned Parenthood v. Casey in 1992 established that states can restrict pre-viability abortions. Restrictions can be placed on first trimester abortions in ways that are not medically necessary, as long as the restrictions do not place an “undue burden” on women seeking abortion services.

Many states now have restrictions in place such as parental involvement, mandatory waiting periods, and biased counseling. Only the requirement that a woman involves her spouse in her decision was disallowed.

Timeline of Abortion in America

1821: Connecticut passes the first law in the United States barring abortions after “quickening.”

1860: Twenty states have laws limiting abortion.

1965Griswold v. Connecticut Supreme Court decision strikes down a state law that prohibited giving married people information, instruction, or medical advice on contraception.

1967: Colorado is the first state to liberalize its abortion laws.

1970: Alaska, Hawaii, New York, and Washington liberalize abortion laws, making abortion available at the request of a woman and her doctor.

1972Eisenstadt v. Baird Supreme Court decision establishes the right of unmarried people to use contraceptives.

1973Roe v. Wade Supreme Court decision strikes down state laws that made abortion illegal.

1976: Congress adopts the first Hyde Amendment barring the use of federal Medicaid funds to provide abortions to low-income women.

1977: A revised Hyde Amendment is passed allowing states to deny Medicaid funding except in cases of rape, incest, or “severe and long-lasting” damage to the woman’s physical health.

1991Rust v. Sullivan upholds the constitutionality of the 1988 “gag rule” which prohibits doctors and counselors at clinics which receive federal funding from providing their patients with information about and referrals for abortion.

1992Planned Parenthood of Southeastern Pennsylvania v. Casey reaffirms the “core” holdings of Roe that women have a right to abortion before fetal viability, but allows states to restrict abortion access so long as these restrictions do not impose an “undue burden” on women seeking abortions.

1994: Freedom of Access to Clinic Entrances (FACE) Act is passed by Congress with a large majority in response to the murder of Dr. David Gunn. The FACE Act forbids the use of “force, a threat of force or physical obstruction” to prevent someone from providing or receiving reproductive health services. The law also provides for both criminal and civil penalties for those who break the law.

2000Stenberg v. Carhart (Carhart I) rules that the Nebraska statute banning so-called “partial-birth abortion” is unconstitutional for two independent reasons: the statute lacks the necessary exception for preserving the health of the woman, and the definition of the targeted procedures is so broad as to prohibit abortions in the second trimester, thereby being an “undue burden” on women. This effectively invalidates 29 of 31 similar statewide bans.

2000: Food and Drug Administration approves mifepristone (RU-486) as an option in abortion care for very early pregnancy.

2003: A federal ban on abortion procedures is passed by Congress and signed into law by President Bush. The National Abortion Federation immediately challenges the law in court and is successful in blocking enforcement of the law for its members.

2004: NAF wins a lawsuit against federal abortion ban. Justice Department appeals rulings by three trial courts against a ban.

Summary

This may have been tiring to read: it’s very specific and very detailed. But before we can even attempt to discuss all of the details of an issue as it pertains to life today, we must be confident we have factually examined details of its past.

Many will question the wisdom of even attempting such a task in discussing such a controversial American experience. Wise or not, abortion is something that impacts tens of millions in the U.S. every year. No, there is no reputable report claiming tens of millions of abortions are performed in the U.S. annually. But abortion impacts far more than just the woman who has that abortion.

This conversation will include the ancillary impacts on immediate and extended family members. But even before we get to that specific discussion, we are going to share and discuss all of the elements that brought us to the abortion historical point we are in today. And to do that, we must first listen to the founder of Planned Parenthood or PP. PP today performs more abortions than any other abortion provider in the U.S. PP receives significant federal grant dollars, though maintaining those taxpayer dollars do NOT directly or indirectly fund abortion procedures, but only fund women’s healthcare initiatives.

This series of stories is probably going to be something you want to share, even download and print for those in your family you feel need to understand all we know about abortion history, its impact on the nation, how we got to this point, and where we are headed with it.

To that end, we will post a link at the bottom of the final story in this series that you can use to download the entire series.

We at TNN promise you to always give you facts and specific information so that YOU can make decisions about the important issues we and our family members either face today or may face tomorrow. There is nothing worse than being confronted by serious and often life-changing circumstances and not either knowing how to deal with them or where to go to get answers.

Thanks for joining us today.

Stay tuned: Chapter II tomorrow!

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The “Wrap-up Smear”

We all have wondered how for the past years whenever attacks come from those on the Left, they seem to be coordinated. Most Americans when seeing this happen over and over again have only two options in their determination of what is happening. One is to simply believe what those on the Left are saying is true. The only other believable explanation is that there is some liberal conspiracy designed and implemented. The latter seems unrealistic because there are so many involved in the process, it would take immense efforts to coordinate with everyone to be on the same page. But it seems that there is now a third option.

America looked on as the angst from the Left reached a fever pitch during the Kavanaugh confirmation process. That angst revealed itself in well-coordinated demonstrations in multiple cities but especially in Washington D.C. Protestors stormed the Capitol, famously confronting Senator Jeff Flake (R-AZ) in an elevator. That confrontation was documented on national television. Was it planned and coordinated? (Read on for the answer) Senate Judiciary hearings were flooded with protestors who in a coordinated fashion consistently interrupted proceedings by screaming and then visibly being dragged out of the hearing by Capitol police. Demonstrations outside the Capitol and Supreme Court involved hundreds and even thousands of protestors. What was going on?

Planned or Not

Immediately after the Saturday afternoon vote in which Judge Brett Kavanaugh was confirmed through a Senate vote, it was revealed that many of those protestors were actually paid to protest. The obvious financial “backer” was globalist George Soros who, it was later revealed, actually through several of the non-profit organizations he funds, DID pay for protestors regarding this confirmation process. How many? I doubt we’ll ever know.

You have seen and heard many conservative radio and television talk show hosts point out that the media have adopted the role of being the second branch or arm of the Democrat Party. It has been uncanny to watch MSNBC, CNN, ABC, CBS, NBC, C-SPAN, the New York Times, Washington Post, Chicago Tribune, and other news outlets in seemingly coordinated fashion parrot the same talking points over and over again. They all have been unified around one cause: to discredit Brett Kavanaugh while “reporting” anything that looked bad about the nominee, saying anything no matter what it took to block his confirmation. Before Kavanaugh and certainly going forward, this approach has been and will be to perpetuate daily criticism of all things Trump.

How did all this media uproar and furor become unanimous in content and timing in its presentation? Was it really planned and coordinated? Is there some vast conspiracy that involves all the liberal media in cahoots with the Democrat Party?

The answer to the last two of those questions is “yes” and “yes.” The answer to the first is “Wrap-up Smear,” a process used by Democrats for a long time in fighting against conservative legislation and appointments. Even though it has been in operation for decades, in the brutal and far-reaching drive by the Left to kill the Kavanaugh confirmation, its identity and its uses slipped through the carefully devised and maintained veil of secrecy hiding the Left’s operational guidelines so no conservatives know how it’s used.

Carefully watch and listen to Pelosi, Blumenthal and other politicians separated by reports from liberal media reporters. Nancy Pelosi in a press conference actually exposed the Democrat coordinated plan and tells how they use it:

Conspiracy

Any conservative who dares to call tactics of the Left “conspiratorial” is immediately excoriated by all on the Left. The power of this tactic so successfully used again and again has been fueled in the past by its anonymity. With the Kavanaugh hearings, this tactic of “Wrap Up Smear” has been exposed to the World to the Left’s horror. Remember this: the one thing in which evil and darkness cannot exist is light. The Kavanaugh confirmation hearings and associated news hysteria have shined the light on this conspiratorial process used by the Left. I did not make that up, and I am not some conspiracy nut job.

I liken this current political process employed by the Democrat Party to what in my city we experience with a powerhouse high school football team. Evangel Christian Academy is a very small private school (less than 400 students) that has amassed 14 state high school championships while playing in the Louisiana High School Athletic Association’s public school category. There are dozens of Evangel alumnae who have played in the NFL and are playing right now at the NCAA Division 1 level who are probably headed to the NFL.

One can imagine the furor targeted at this small private school’s football success from public high school coaches and school administrators. Even some other private school administration and sports personnel hate their success as well. For years, this public school organization has systematically endeavored to push Evangel and at least one other private school in the state from its ranks. Evangel and this other school have weathered the outrage and are still at it.

What’s the big allegation from coaches and administrators from Louisiana public high schools? Evangel is successful they must be cheating. But in more than 20 years, Evangel has been the most investigated high school in LHSAA’s history, according to its longtime executive director. And Evangel has never been found cheating. Still, the allegations by others continue annually and become deafening about September 1. That’s when football season starts!

How does this analogy compare to the “Wrap Up Smear” of the U.S. political Left? Both have the same fundamental premise as their foundation: “We will NOT change our operations to compete with others by working to rise to the same level in which they play. Instead, we will just go out in the public and make unfounded allegations of cheating against our opponents. That is much easier than working harder and working smarter, and surely will achieve the same results.” But they never do.

But they HAVE worked in the past. But how?

Their success draws from the same fuel used in peoples’ animus against that private high school. Rather than find and implement the same or similar processes used for a couple of decades by Evangel’s coaches in preparing players in whatever ways necessary to pick up 14 championship trophies, they opt to verbally denigrate Evangel, perpetrating the thought, “If they’re winning this much, it must be because they cheat.” That effort has not worked to stop Evangel Christian Academy. It has not worked for America’s political Leftists either. But as in the case in Louisiana among public school administrators and coaches, the allegations continue from the Left against conservatives.

By the way, what’s the definition of insanity? “Doing the same thing, again and again, expecting different results.” Doing so has not worked in Louisiana, has not and will not work for political Leftists in the U.S.

Should Conservatives be Afraid?

No. Conservatives should be invigorated! The exposure of these tactics prove several points:

  • Democrats and their minions are running scared. And as most know, it really is hard to make good decisions when one is afraid. It daily becomes more obvious the Left is NOT making good decisions;
  • When one knows for certain who their enemies are, it is much easier to plan and implement specific responses aimed directly at a specific target. Conservatives now know for certain where their arrows need to fly;
  • This craziness of the Left being revealed to all of America proves that there really IS a conspiracy in American politics — and that conspiracy is NOT from conservatives. There is a real conspiracy on the left that includes Democrats AND the drive-by media.

What are the opposites of “Fear?” “Trust” and “Faith.” Conservatives in government, for the most part, trust the current administration — especially now that this leftist conspiracy has been exposed. Further, those same conservatives have stronger faith than ever before to believe all of the positive information being revealed every day about the good things happening for Americans of every socioeconomic sector. And those Americans know for certain these good things are direct results of the Donald Trump Administration.

EVERY Leftist is horrified by Trump Administration success.

Summary

As promised, today’s story is the first that we will share this week detailing the falsehoods that have been sold to the American public by Democrats and others from the Left. As the clock ticks and pages of the calendar turn toward the midterm elections, two things are critical:

  1. Conservatives MUST get out to vote. Not doing so will give Democrats control of the House of Representatives and possibly control of several Senate seats currently occupied by Republicans. And even today the Democrats along with their watchdog leftist Media are promoting the investigation and impeachment of Brett Kavanaugh if they win the House. Though Dems know such an attempt would not be successful in unseating Justice Kavanaugh, their hope is to keep their base stirred up so as to ensure maximum numbers of votes;
  2. Every Republican MUST engage in understanding how critical it is for all to fight back against the tyranny of the Left is trying to turn our government toward Socialism. Simply understanding it is NOT sufficient. All must engage in this process of educating everyone within our circles of influence. “You shall know the Truth and the Truth will set you free.”

I really do not think a midterm blue wave is coming. But I know for certain the Left is energized in a way I have not witnessed in my lifetime. Knowing the truth is one thing. Acting on that truth is something else and is much more important. If conservative Americans don’t act on these truths, knowing the truth is really meaningless.

Remember the story above about coaches and administrators from those Louisiana public schools holding such anger for that little private high school? They though knowing what’s wrong and how to successfully address the problem by stepping up THEIR game, watching their opponent and learning the truth about the success in achieving those 14 state championships, they simply stand back and mount a constant verbal attack using hollow allegations wrapped in anger and hatred. Democrats doing so in the Kavanaugh case did not stop his confirmation to SCOTUS. But unless conservatives act, they may just be successful in the midterms with a true “blue wave.”

I don’t want to watch an impeachment process. To stop it, we MUST act.

 

 

 

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The “Real” Reason

We’ve heard dozens of reasons (or excuses, depending on your perception) for the nastiness in the Kavanaugh confirmation process. I won’t even list them here. There are many and you’ve heard them all.

They all seem to land in one central spot: Kavanaugh was unworthy to become a Supreme Court Justice. In trying to understand the Leftist’s ignoring Kavanaugh’s judicial record, I determined they made it Left vs. Right, Conservative against Liberal, Republican against Democrat. In following that reasoning, I ran across a story that ironically parallels what we are experiencing politically today.

It includes two characters: a man and a woman. But it’s not sexist!

“A woman in a hot air balloon realized she was lost. She lowered her altitude and spotted a man in a boat below. She shouted at him,
‘Excuse me, can you help me? I promised a friend I would meet him an hour ago, but I don’t know where I am.’

The man consulted his portable GPS and replied, ‘You’re in a hot air balloon, approximately 30 feet above ground elevation of 2,346 feet above sea level. You are at 31 degrees, 14.97 minutes north latitude and 100 degrees, 49.09 minutes west longitude.’

She rolled her eyes and said, ‘You must be a Republican.’

‘I am,’ replied the man. ‘How did you know?’

‘Well,’ answered the balloonist, ‘everything you told me is technically correct. But I have no idea what to do with your information, and I’m still lost. Frankly, you’ve not been much help to me.’

The man smiled and responded, ‘You must be a Democrat.’

‘I am,’ replied the balloonist. ‘How did you know?’

‘Well,’ said the man, ‘you don’t know where you are — or where you are going. You’ve risen to where you are, due to a large quantity of hot air. You made a promise you have no idea how to keep, and you expect me to solve your problem. You’re in exactly the same position you were in before we met, but somehow, now it’s my fault.’”

It’s sad but true. Despite what Leftists are claiming, the war between conservatives and women is NOT a legitimate claim. In fact, the Left is saying to women exactly what they have said to African Americans for decades: “We are the political party that supports you, knows your needs, and cares for you. Conservatives hate women and will never allow women to assume serious roles in running our country.”

All this week we will look at specific dividing issues between Democrats and Republicans and historically find the realities and falsehoods in each.

Make sure you look in tomorrow as we get started!