Saturday, April 21, 2007

"American Idol" Poverty Program Funds Heading to Pro-Abortion Groups

AI

Washington, DC (LifeNews.com) -- A pro-life organization that serves as a watchdog for corporate donations to Planned Parenthood and other pro-abortion groups says the popular "American Idol" program is indirectly backing two organizations that endorse abortion.
ARTICLE

Finding Real Alternatives to Abortion

Interview With Official of Pro-life Government-Funded Agency

HARRISBURG, Pennsylvania, APRIL 19, 2007 (Zenit.org).- In 1995, Pennsylvania started a bold, state-funded initiative to reduce the number of abortions by providing pregnant women the necessary resources to keep their children.

In this interview with ZENIT, Kevin Bagatta, president & chief executive officer of Real Alternatives, (www.realalternatives.org/aboutus), discusses the Pennsylvania Alternative to Abortion Services Program and how it has helped abortion rates in the state to fall steadily.
Q: How did you get involved in Real Alternatives?

Bagatta: My three brothers and I were born and raised on Long Island, New York. Both of our parents are handicapped. My Italian-American dad, a World War II veteran, walks with cane and a brace and my Irish-American mom became paralyzed with polio during the polio epidemic.

They both taught us -- and still do -- the true value of life. Having watched the culture of death practiced by Nazi Germany, they immediately explained to my brothers and I how wrong the Roe vs. Wade decision was that legalized abortion in America and the ill effects it would have on our country.

Q: Real Alternatives seeks to encourage childbirth instead of abortion. How did it begin?

Bagatta: In 1994, Pennsylvania Governor Robert Casey placed alternative to abortion services program funding in the state budget.

In 1995, I answered an advertisement in the local newspaper from a pro-life organization looking for a director to start a statewide government-funded program.

Real Alternatives was established to be the statewide administrator of the Pennsylvania Alternative to Abortions Services Program [PAASP].

With a dedicated staff of 12 and nine board members, we contract with 120 service providers made up of pregnancy support centers, social service agencies like Catholic Charities, adoption agencies and maternity homes throughout the state to reach out to women in unplanned or crisis pregnancies.

The concept of government-funded social services is not new.

Well over 30 years ago, the state saw nonprofit charitable agencies that served women who were in a unique crisis either due to domestic violence or rape, and decided to fund them so they would provide more service and reach more women.

With PAASP, the state saw nonprofit charitable agencies serving women who uniquely experience another type of crisis -- an unplanned pregnancy. By funding these nonprofit charities, the centers would be able to have the necessary resources to reach more women.

That is exactly what has happened. In fiscal year 1996, we served 6,715 women statewide with 72 centers. In fiscal year 2005, we served 16,600 women with 120 centers. With the necessary financial resources, centers opened more sites and hired more counselors and continue to serve more women in need. To date, over 123,000 women have been served under the program.

Q: Does Real Alternatives have appeal for abortion-advocates as well?

Bagatta: It ought to. Once there is a crisis pregnancy, this is the only program established to help a woman in need choose life. By providing a counselor to be with the woman in need from the moment she finds out she is pregnant to 12 months after the birth of the baby, this program empowers the mother to overcome her obstacles and crisis. She is not alone. She knows someone is with her to help her.

An alternative to abortion is not a pamphlet, it is another person; it is one woman seeing another woman in crisis and loving her and supporting her like she is her own daughter. This program represents the best in America.

Q: Recently you began working with faith-based organizations. How does that teamwork happen, practically speaking?

Bagatta: This has been a greatly welcomed change in our ability to use experienced service providers to serve women throughout the state.

Again, due to interpretation of U.S. Supreme Court First Amendment cases, we were restricted in the type of faith-based organizations we were allowed to contract due to the program being funded with government money.

Thanks to President George Bush's Faith-Based Initiative Executive Order, all entities administering government funds are allowed to contract with faith-based organizations as long as the faith-based organization keeps their promotion of religion separate from the government-funded service.

Now, women can receive our government-funded service from a faith-based organization like Catholic Charities and also receive religious services and support.

Q: Your program recommends abstinence for young people. What is the most difficult part of educating youth in this?

Bagatta: Remember, when we see young women in our centers they have already become sexually active.

Not all young women, however, who think they are pregnant when they come to our centers are indeed pregnant. For them, our goal is modify their risky lifestyle and behavior, not accommodate it.

We do not want them to come through our doors again. We not only want them to avoid a teen pregnancy but also a sexually transmitted disease. Abstinence is the only way to lower teen pregnancies and sexually transmitted diseases. Since this is the healthiest lifestyle for teens; this is what we recommend.

Youth and parents are very ignorant or misinformed about the epidemic of sexually transmitted disease among our teenage population.

In America, one out of two youths will acquire an STD before the age of 25. The only contraceptive that attempts to prevent pregnancy and sexually transmitted diseases is the condom and it fails.

For example, in 2001, a U.S. governmental study revealed no proof that condoms prevented transmission of gonorrhea, chlamydia infection, trichomoniasis, genital herpes, syphilis, chancroid, and HPV-associated diseases.

We have known for years that certain strains of HPV cause deadly cervical cancer. Once we found out about these studies, we told the teenage girls this information so they could avoid these diseases -- which in some cases are incurable and cause death -- through abstinence.

Teenagers are smart and want the facts.

Q: Your Web site explains that a main goal is providing information so that a client can make an educated and informed choice about her health and that of her baby. How much does a "typical" client know about abortion?

Bagatta: Many times a woman assumes that there is just this "blob of tissue" that is removed. This is why tasteful, medically accurate fetal development photos interest her and why we have them on our Web site.

In addition, counselors provide information of the types of abortion performed and the risks associated with abortion. This information is provided to ensure that women who are considering abortion are fully informed about what is occurring in an abortion and of the ramifications of that decision.

The primary purpose of the program is to provide pregnancy support services that promote childbirth instead of abortion. Women seeking alternatives to abortion appreciate as many facts as possible when they are undecided about what to do in a crisis pregnancy. Providing her with facts empowers her and ensures she is fully informed before she makes a decision.

Q: Real Alternatives continues to provide assistance to mothers and fathers even after babies are born. Why and how does this work?

Bagatta: The client arrives at the service provider and starts to receive counseling support that meets her needs.

If she is not sure she is pregnant, then a pregnancy self-test kit will be offered to her. If she is pregnant, the counselor will listen to the expressed concern she has about the pregnancy. If she is new to parenting, parenting classes or stress management counseling might be offered to ensure the crisis pregnancy does not become a crisis-parenting situation.

Each woman seeking the services comes as a unique individual. As such, her family, her education, her beliefs and her experiences shape her.

This program provides a person to assist and mentor the woman to overcome her obstacles and meet her needs from the time she finds out she is pregnant until her baby is 12 months old.

Q: Explain how other states have looked to Pennsylvania with thoughts of implementing similar programs. Could this become a nationwide program?

Bagatta: Once we established the program and abortions started to decrease in Pennsylvania, other state pro-life organizations became interested in this first-of-its-kind program. Remember, using tax dollars to promote life was revolutionary.

As a result of our educating these pro-life organization about the program, state governors and legislatures in Louisiana, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, Florida and Texas placed funding of Alternative to Abortion Services programs in their budgets.

Most of the states could not fund their programs at the $5.5 million a year level of Pennsylvania and now have much smaller programs. The state of Texas, however, proposed a large $2.5-million-a-year program and asked us to replicate our program there.

Real Alternatives, through its government audits, has earned the reputation in Pennsylvania as a fiscally responsible and trusted custodian of public funds.

This is the program that works in America lowering abortions and is certainly the compassionate and caring approach that should be tried in the rest of the world and funded as an additional program through the United Nations.
ZE07041928

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Partial Birth Abortion: Candidates reactions

H/T to Catholic Fire

By Valerie Jane

What is a candidate to do with this new ruling?
Some have already reacted. Here are just a few quotes:

Barack Obama:
"I am extremely concerned that this ruling will embolden state legislatures to enact further measures to restrict a woman's right to choose, and that the conservative Supreme Court justices will look for other opportunities to erode Roe v. Wade, which is established federal law and a matter of equal rights for women."

Rudy Giuliani :
"The Supreme Court reached the correct conclusion in upholding the congressional ban on partial birth abortion. I agree with it."

John Edwards:
"I could not disagree more strongly with today's Supreme Court decision. The ban upheld by the Court is an ill-considered and sweeping prohibition that does not even take account for serious threats to the health of individual women."

Mitt Romney:
"Today, our nation's highest court reaffirmed the value of life in America by upholding a ban on a practice that offends basic human decency. This decision represents a step forward in protecting the weakest and most innocent among us."

Hillary Clinton:
"This decision marks a dramatic departure from four decades of Supreme Court rulings that upheld a woman's right to choose and recognized the importance of women's health. Today's decision blatantly defies the Court's recent decision in 2000 striking down a state partial-birth abortion law because of its failure to provide an exception for the health of the mother."


According to many of the pro-choicers who visit us, this ruling is "not a big deal".

I think some people disagree.

Bev's Broadcasts - National Day of Prayer

BibleHRTL #195
National Day of Prayer
This is Beverly Larranaga of Hawaii Right to Life

The 56th Annual National Day of Prayer will take place Thursday, May 3rd. There will be two events on Oahu. One at Kapolei Regional park across from the Kapolei Library from 12 noon to 1 PM, The second is at the State Capitol at 6:30 PM. The theme for this year is "America, Unite in Prayer". Based on the verse from II Chronicles 7:14 which states: "If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and will heal their land."

The Bible offers the assurance that God listens when His people pray. God is waiting for His children to come together in prayer on behalf of our nation and its leaders. He wants us to search our hearts and repent, both individually and corporately, as we endeavor to point this
country back in the right direction. It’s time for America
to unite in prayer.

Please pray for all the innocent lives to be spared and all sin is banished from this state, nation and throughout the world.

With Blessings,
This has been Beverly Larranaga of Hawaii Right to Life

Bev's Broadcast - Stem Cell Research

blessings

HRTL director Beverly Laranaga's one minute radio broadcast is a regular feature on our local Christian station KLight.

HRTL #194
Stem Cell Bills

This is Beverly Larranaga of Hawaii Right to Life.

The U.S. Senate approved legislation (S. 5) on April 11, 2007 that would mandate federal funding of the type of stem cell research that requires the killing of human embryos.

Senator Akaka voted in support of the bill and Senator Inouye voted against the bill. The House of Representatives passed very similar legislation (H.R. 3) in January. Representative Abercrombie and Hirano both voted in support of this bill.

Quoting from the statement of Administration Policy
“President Bush has said that he will veto the legislation. The Administration believes that government has a duty to use the people’s money responsibly, both supporting important public purposes and respecting moral boundaries.”

The Senate also passed S. 30 (sponsored by Senators Norm Coleman, and Johnny Isakson, a bill to encourage research on stem cells obtained in ways that do not require the harming of human embryos.

For more information on these bills go to the National Right to Life web site at NRLC

With Blessings,
This has been Beverly Larranaga of Hawaii Right to Life.

Message from the Director of Hawaii Right to Life

Supreme Court upholding the Partial Birth Abortion Ban Act 4-17-07
This is Beverly Larranaga of Hawaii Right to Life

We at Hawaii Right to Life applaud U.S. Supreme Court ruling upholding the Partial-Birth Abortion Ban Act.

The U.S. Supreme Court today rejected a legal challenge to the federal Partial-Birth Abortion Ban Act, allowing the law to go into effect for the first time since it was signed by President George W. Bush in 2003.
The federal law bans "partial-birth abortion," a legal term of art, defined in the law itself as any abortion in which the baby is delivered feet-first "past the [baby's] navel . . . outside the body of the mother," or "in the case of a head-first presentation, the entire fetal head is outside the body of the mother," before being killed

This is a major victory to the Pro-Life movement.

This has been Beverly Larranaga of Hawaii Right to Life.

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Video - Momma I Want to Live

H/T to RL

by the Right Brothers

U.S. Supreme Court Upholds Partial-Birth Abortion Ban Act

The U.S. Supreme Court today rejected a legal challenge to the federal Partial-Birth Abortion Ban Act, allowing the law to go into effect for the first time since it was signed by President George W. Bush in 2003.
ARTICLE

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Rudy Giuliani Tells Pro-Life Advocates: Get Over Abortion Issue

Guiliani

Washington, DC (LifeNews.com) -- After getting national attention last week with comments supporting taxpayer funding abortions and calling the funding a "right," Rudy Giuliani thumbed his nose at the pro-life movement further over the weekend telling them to get over the issue of abortion.
ARTICLE