Saturday, June 05, 2010

Fault Lines: "From the very start, I told them that I don't do abortions"

Coerced by hospital administrators, a Christian nurse reels from the choices of a fateful hour

Twice in her life, Cathy DeCarlo has felt the foundations tremble.

Twenty years ago, in her native Philippines, a 7.8 earthquake collapsed her high school around her. She watched, dazed, as emergency teams pulled other children from the rubble, and stared, fascinated, as doctors and nurses turned a playground into a medical triage, performing life-and-death procedures – even amputations – before her eyes.

It wasn’t the horror and terror of that day that stayed with Cathy, in the years to come. It was the swift, deft teamwork of the medical personnel. Marveling at their skills, at their uncanny ability to read a patient’s symptoms and respond in an instant, she knew to the deep places of her soul that this was what she wanted to do with her own life – serve side-by-side with fellow professionals in heroic efforts to save lives.

Sooner than she imagined, the dream came true. It carried her halfway around the world to find professional success and personal fulfillment beyond her fondest dreams.

Until the day the teamwork failed her … and Cathy felt the earth move, again, shaking her to those same deep places of her soul. Full story.

Related links:

Alliance Defense Fund:


Thursday, June 03, 2010

Assisted suicide: why now?

Wesley J. SmithAl Pacino sympathetically portrayed Dr. Jack Kevorkian in a recent HBO movie . . .

Legatus Magazine | by Wesley J. Smith

Since 1988, when euthanasia advocates failed to qualify for a legalization initiative on the California ballot, the assisted suicide movement in the United States has gone from a barely noticed fringe movement to a well-funded political machine that threatens Hippocratic medical values and the sanctity/equality of human life.

Consider the disturbing history: In 1994, Oregon legalized assisted suicide (by a 51-49% vote), with the law going into effect in 1997. The movement had a setback in 1997 when the U.S. Supreme Court ruled, in a rare unanimous decision, that there is no constitutional right to assisted suicide. But in 2008, Washington State legalized Oregon-style assisted suicide by a lopsided 58-42%. Then, last year, Montana’s Supreme Court ruled that assisted suicide was not against the state’s “public policy.”

The euthanasia movement is not resting on its recent laurels. Advocates have filed a lawsuit in Connecticut to legalize assisted suicide by redefinition — on the dubious theory that a doctor who lethally prescribes drugs for use by a terminally ill patient is merely performing “aid in dying,” rather than the legally proscribed assisted suicide. Meanwhile, legislative legalization efforts have been initiated in Hawaii, Arizona, Wisconsin, Vermont, New Hampshire and Connecticut — all without success.

A question amidst all of this Sturm und Drang naturally arises: Why now? After all, 100 years ago when people did die in agony from such illnesses as a burst appendix, there was little talk of legalizing euthanasia. But now, when pain and other forms of suffering are readily alleviated and the hospice movement has created truly compassionate methods to care for the dying, suddenly we hear the battle cry “death with dignity” as “the ultimate civil liberty.”

In fighting assisted suicide since 1993, I have often pondered the “why now” question. Read more.

Sunday, May 30, 2010

Euthanasia doesn't assure choice

The [Montreal] Gazette | May 30, 2010
Letter to the Editor

Re: "Quebecers to be asked views on euthanasia, assisted suicide" (Gazette, May 26)

Dutch doctors have practised assisted suicide and euthanasia for decades. Although the law calls for performing assisted suicide and euthanasia with the patient's consent, it is often involuntary. The law also calls for obtaining a second opinion from another physician, but this is often not done.

The most recent year for which we have an official report from the Dutch government is 2005. Despite the fact the report was written to defend the practice, it concedes that 550 patients (an average of 1.5 per day) were actively killed by Dutch doctors "without an explicit request." The report also concedes that another 20 per cent of deaths were not reported to the authorities as required by Dutch law.

Patient death can save money for health care systems as well as for surviving family members. Once assisted suicide and euthanasia are accepted, abuses are possible and difficult to control. Those who believe that legal assisted suicide and euthanasia will assure their autonomy and choice are naïve.

To see the Dutch government report, go to, then click on Themes, then Euthanasia, and then scroll down to Evaluation.

William Reichel, MD
Centre for Clinical Bioethics
Georgetown University School of Medicine, Washington, D.C.

© Copyright (c) The Montreal Gazette

New Study Links Abortion to Wide Range of Mental Health Disorders

Abortion More Traumatic Than Are Other Stressful Experiences
Read article at

Looking For Advice in All the Wrong Places

By "Colleen," age 28

I was 18 and dating a man my parents strongly disapproved of. So they "made a deal" with me: they would send me to college if I would break up with him. I agreed, though I never really meant to keep my end of the bargain.

I realized I was pregnant when the smells from chemistry class kept making me sick. A friend convinced me to go her doctor in town. He diagnosed pregnancy immediately, saying, "Such a shame, another young one." He told me not to worry, that "it" could be "taken care of." He never once said anything about keeping the baby, but gave me a card from the local abortuary. Full story.

Related links:
Get unplanned pregnancy and abortion information here.
Hurting from an abortion? Find help here.

How the new healthcare law can cause you to lose your physician

The partisan healthcare "reform" train has left the station, and patients may soon be realizing their physicians aren't on board. Medicare and Medicaid patients are already feeling the painful impact of the government's squeeze of physicians, and the prognosis for other patients is not good. Read more.

Related link:

Planned Parenthood Response to Botched Abortion Shows Little Care for Women

Naples, FL ( -- A pro-life group that monitors problems at abortion centers says the response by Planned Parenthood to what appears to be a botched abortion shows little care for women. Operation Rescue is weighing in on the recent incident at a Planned Parenthood facility in Naples, Florida. Full story.

Breaking: New Georgia billboard campaign, "Black & Unwanted"

From Jill Stanek's blog:

Just received word from Ryan Bomberger of The Radiance Foundation that his organization and Georgia Right to Life are cosponsoring a second wave of pro-life billboards directed toward an African-American audience, "an 'Endangered Species' Part 2, if you will," wrote Ryan.

Entitled, "Black & Unwanted," 60 of the these billboards will be up by tomorrow in Augusta, Macon, and Savannah, GA.

The billboard continue to hammer away at the eugenics/racism foundation of the abortion movement as well as emphasize the need for black adoption and its tragic racialization. Read more.

Related link:
The Racialization of Adoption: Abortion and Race

Child's trachea healed by adult stem cells

Adult stem cells, which do not involve the killing of a human embryo, have proven useful in yet another area of medical treatment. View the story at

The Ethics of Abortion: A Debate

Dr. Patrick Lee—editor at the Center for Morality in Public Life and chair of the Institute of Bioethics at Franciscan University of Steubenville—debates David Boonin of the University of Colorado on the ethics of abortion. View on Ethika Politika blog.