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Less than a week after the conclusion of the Republican National Convention, the Democratic National Convention rolled up with its own share of political drama. While it is easy to get distracted by these exciting developments, it is important for us in the pro-life movement to also keep an eye on the policy platforms of both major political parties.

A closer look at the platform of the Democratic National Convention will unveil the party leadership’s hardline stance against unborn life. As we have highlighted recently, this platform is the most pro-abortion platform in the history of the Democratic Party.

From the Democratic National Committee’s 2016 platform:

 “Democrats are committed to protecting and advancing reproductive health, rights, and justice. We believe unequivocally, like the majority of Americans, that every woman should have access to quality reproductive health care services, including safe and legal abortion…”

 Pro-abortion Hillary Clinton

Hillary Clinton, in her acceptance address at the Democratic National Convention endorsed this party platform by saying, “We wrote it together – now let’s go out there and make it happen together.”

Something important to note in this platform – the omission of the word “rare” from the phrase “safe, legal and rare abortions.” In 2008, Hillary Clinton frequently stated that abortions should be “safe, legal and rare.” On more than one occasion, Clinton would go on to emphasize, “and by rare, I mean rare.” Quite interestingly, both Clinton and her party have completely omitted their “rare” qualifier for abortions. It seems there is just too much money to be made for those willing to perform the gruesome procedure to support abortion only in “rare” occasions and Planned Parenthood stays financially involved and supportive of candidates who support it.

The Democrats’ staunch pro-abortion stance was further reinforced when they gave Planned Parenthood President, Cecile Richards a prime-time speaking slot at their convention. Yes, Planned Parenthood is the same organization that has been in the news lately for selling body parts of dead babies and who receive over $500,000 of your federal tax money annually to support their money-making business.

The Democratic Party’s harsh and extreme stance against life has only served to alienate millions of its own pro-life members. According to Kristen Day, Executive Director of Democrats for Life, “The Democratic Party’s abortion stances have already caused many to leave the party, and many more will drop out because of the platform wording…Abortion is also among the reasons Democrats lost their majority in the House of Representatives. In the key states of Ohio and Pennsylvania, for example, Democrats held the majority of seats until Republicans were able to associate the Affordable Care Act with “the largest expansion of abortion since Roe v. Wade.”

Growing a pro-life culture in Georgia requires the presence of strong pro-life leaders in both our major parties. We at the Georgia Life Alliance are grieved by the Democratic Party’s staunch pro-abortion stance. We encourage pro-life Democrats to stand up to their party’s divisive leadership on the issue of Life!

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For the Georgia Life Alliance article about the Pro-life Platform adopted at the National Republican Convention, CLICK HERE.

For more about the Democrat National Platform on abortion, see this posting from NRL News.
Georgia Life Alliance has been the Georgia Affiliate of National Right to Life since 2014.

Learn more about supporting our work HERE.

Perinatal Hospice Part 3
by Tracy Winsor,
Co-Founder, BeNotAfraid

[Editor’s note: In case you missed them, click to find Perinatal Hospice Part 1 and Part 2.]

North Carolina parents, Javier and Carolina Castro, were offered two options by their medical provider when they were told at twenty weeks gestation that their son had a lethal kidney anomaly.  Abort within the next week in North Carolina or travel to Georgia and abort sometime in the next month.

It was a friend who suggested a third option…carrying the baby to term.  She connected the couple to a local organization, Be Not Afraid (BNA), which offered perinatal hospice support to parents carrying to term following a prenatal diagnosis.  A BNA volunteer called Carolina Castro within hours.

“At first, she asked me just to listen to what she had to say,” explains Castro. “I had no hope that she had information that would be helpful for me. I had only heard of pregnancies with complications being terminated.”

7.27.16 Perenatal Hospice Article 3

Javier and Carolina Castro welcome their son, Gabriel.                         (Photo © BeNotAfraid)

The volunteer acknowledged Carolina’s feelings of shock and grief. She told Carolina that the “diagnosis day” was the worst. Often parents at diagnosis fear that the worst is yet to come when really the worst has already happened.

She said that the birth, even if it meant a death, would be easier than the diagnosis because there would be time to prepare.

She provided information regarding BNA support, and encouraged Carolina to look at the FAQ page at ww.perinatalhospice.net so that she could be fully aware of the research that supported continuing the pregnancy as well as the risks of a second trimester abortion.

She shared stories about parents she had supported who had no regrets about continuing their pregnancies. It gave them time to cherish their child’s life. She also reminded Carolina that her son had not been changed by the diagnosis; he was still the baby she had loved from the moment she knew he existed.

She shared parents videos available at the BNA website so that Carolina would feel less isolated in the experience of this diagnosis, and so that she and Javier could begin to envision the possibilities of choosing not to abort.

“This made all the difference to us,” shares Castro. “We didn’t feel alone.”

“And I remember,” Castro adds, “That when she talked about our son, Gabriel, she referred to him as our precious baby.  This was so calming in the midst of the turmoil inside my head.  She recognized him as someone who mattered.”

While the primary focus of BNA is in serving parents who have committed to carrying to term, the organization is always prepared to provide information and prolife encouragement to parents who are undecided or even abortion-minded.

BNA Co-founder, Sandy Buck, explains, “We are fully committed to the dignity of all life no matter how frail or how brief, and that commitment is not only reflected in the care we provide to the parents who decide to carry to term and the babies welcomed by our service, but also in our willingness to engage parents who are undecided.”

Carolina Castro was one such parent who ultimately decided to continue her pregnancy. The BNA volunteers who supported her and Javier in welcoming their son considered it a privilege.

On September 17, 2013, Gabriel Andres Castro was born still.

In a blog post two days later, Carolina wrote…

One thought I do have very clear in my mind and in my heart, is that yes, it was all worth it…The diagnosis (day) was the worst day.  The day when they tell you what you hoped, what you thought you had, was no more.  “Your baby is incompatible with life…”  That was the…day of darkness, of hopelessness, of fear…  

September 17th, four months later, was very different.  It was a day of celebration, of union, of unconditional love.  

Castro reflects, “I have no regrets whatsoever. I am so glad the option of carrying to term was explained to me, and so glad I listened.”

Javi and Carolina are featured in a BNA parent DVD available at the LINK HERE.  Their interview is featured in the subsection entitled, “At diagnosis, parents need information regarding the option of carrying to term.”

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Tracy L. Winsor, MPA, is Cofounder of Be Not Afraid (BNA), a private non-profit corporation whose mission is to provide comprehensive, practical, and peer-based support to parents experiencing a prenatal diagnosis and carrying to term. She can be reached directly at Tracy.Winsor@benotafraid.net.

[Editor’s note: In case you missed them, click to find Perinatal Hospice Part 1 and Part 2.]

 

It’s been a fascinating week in American politics. No doubt your inbox, social media feeds and the news have been filled with “RNCinCLE” posts, news, pictures, commentary and videos. Many of our pro-life friends from Georgia have been in Cleveland for the GOP Convention and some went a week early to serve on Committees ranging from the Rules Committee to the Platform Committee, which we take a special interest in. As Convention week comes to a close, we wanted to share some good news for unborn children and prolife advocates.

It may not have been mentioned in the long list of policy positions during Republican Nominee Donald Trump’s speech to the RNC Convention last night, but the cause of the unborn child was certainly not ignored by the Republican Party. It started with the Platform Committee. The issue of Life is traditionally expected to be a key issue on the platforms of both the Republican and Democratic national conventions. The Republican National Convention in Cleveland, Ohio started by exhibiting a strong stance for Life with its recently adopted platform. (The full text of Prolife Plank is included at end of this article.)

In what has been touted as their “most pro-life platform”, the Republican National Convention’s delegates resoundingly adopted the proposed platform with a voice vote. The platform’s section on “The Sanctity and Dignity of Human Life” begins with the following statement:

Faithful to the “self-evident” truths enshrined in the Declaration of Independence, we assert the sanctity of human life and affirm that the unborn child has a fundamental individual right to life which cannot be infringed.

The platform goes on to endorse legislation that extends 14th amendment protections to unborn children. The platform also condemns the spending of taxpayer dollars on funding organizations that perform or promote abortions in addition to calling for a ban on using body parts from aborted fetuses for research. Furthermore, this platform also commends Republican legislators at the federal and state levels for leading the charge to provide children with health care coverage before birth.

The Chair of the Republican National Convention’s 2016 Platform Committee, United State Senator John Barrasso (R-Wyoming) has a perfect 100% Pro-Life Voting Record from the National Right To Life Committee.

We at the Georgia Life Alliance salute the Republican National Convention & the Republican Party for their renewed and robust support for the cause of Life.

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Republican Platform

We The People: A Restoration of Constitutional Government

The Sanctity and Dignity of Human Life 

Faithful to the “self-evident” truths enshrined in the Declaration of Independence, we assert the sanctity of human life and affirm that the unborn child has a fundamental individual right to life which cannot be infringed. We support a human life amendment to the Constitution and endorse legislation to make clear that the Fourteenth Amendment’s protections apply to unborn children. We oppose using public revenues to promote or perform abortion or fund organizations which perform or advocate it and will not fund or subsidize health care which includes abortion coverage. We support the appointment of judges who respect traditional family values and the sanctity of innocent human life. We oppose the non-consensual withholding or withdrawal of care or treatment, including food and water, from people with disabilities, including newborns, as well as the elderly and infirm, just as we oppose active and passive euthanasia and assisted suicide.

Republican leadership has led the effort to prohibit the barbaric practice of partial-birth abortion and permitted States to extend health care coverage to children before birth. We urge Congress to strengthen the Born Alive Infant Protection Act by enacting appropriate civil and criminal penalties on healthcare providers who fail to provide treatment and care to an infant who survives an abortion, including early induction delivery where the death of the infant is intended. We call for legislation to ban sex-selective abortions – gender discrimination in its most lethal form – and to protect from abortion unborn children who are capable of feeling pain; and we applaud U.S. House Republicans for leading the effort to protect the lives of pain-capable unborn children in the District of Columbia. We call for a ban on the use of body parts from aborted fetuses for research. We support and applaud adult stem cell research to develop lifesaving therapies, and we oppose the killing of embryos for their stem cells. We oppose federal funding of embryonic stem cell research.

We also salute the many States that have passed laws for informed consent, mandatory waiting periods prior to an abortion, and health-protective clinic regulation. We seek to protect young girls from exploitation through a parental consent requirement; and we affirm our moral obligation to assist, rather than penalize, women challenged by an unplanned pregnancy. We salute those who provide them with counseling and adoption alternatives and empower them to choose life, and we take comfort in the tremendous increase in adoptions that has followed Republican legislative initiatives.

For the full platform language CLICK HERE.

Georgia Life Alliance is the National Right to Life Affiliate in Georgia.  To support our work on behalf of the unborn in Georgia, CLICK HERE.