When the Newt spoke words of support for Todd Akin even after questioning on Meet the Press, I was just plain flabbergasted. David Gregory stated that in his (Gingrich’s) support of Akin that he (Gingrich) was way outside of the mainstream of the Republican Party. Gingrich disagreed.
The two sides square off in a ring that can only be called a square if one has the visual imagination of M.C. Escher or Pablo Picasso. The two sides do not even appear to be in the same universe.
The Republicans say that the Democrat Platform approves of partial birth abortion and that their own platform is silent on the rape and health of mother exceptions to the abortion ban.
The Democrats say that the Republican Platform calls for an end to abortion, period, without any exceptions and that theirs is silent on partial birth abortion.
A little reading and the following are noted.
The Republican Platform is 413 words; the Democrats spend 143 words.
The Republican Platform calls for “ a human life amendment to the Constitution and endorse legislation to make clear that the Fourteenth Amendment’s protections apply to unborn children.” I think they are talking about this clause of the 14th Amendment: ; nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws. The way I read it, this would at least require a judge to rule before an abortion could be had, which is much more restrictive than anything on the books now. It brings to mind the horrors of the Terry Shiavo case.
While technically silent on the rape and health of mother exceptions to the abortion ban, if such a thing was passed, it would all-but eliminate legal abortion.
The Democrat’s platform says nothing about partial birth abortion, but the Republican one does.
Both platform’s positions on this issue are duplicated in full below.
The Democrat Platform says two things I whole-heartedly agree with:
- “Abortion is an intensely personal decision between a woman, her family, her doctor, and her clergy; there is no place for politicians or government to get in the way.”
- It “supports Roe v. Wade and a woman’s right to make decisions regarding her pregnancy, including a safe and legal abortion, regardless of ability to pay.”
To me, this is the sole issue: safe and legal abortion regardless of the ability to pay.
Many on the right would say that this topic has no place in politics unless public monies are used to pay for an abortion, which used to be the primary reason it was a political topic. Now, it is political because it is a moral issue (more on this in a bit).
Abortions happened long before Roe v. Wade—they did not start because of the ruling nor will they end if it is banned by a Constitutional Amendment. What will happen is that those with sufficient funds will find a doctor (either in this country or another) to do the procedure and pay for it. This without money will find quacks and other unsafe and often deadly means of accomplishing the same thing.
Those who want to see it banned do so primarily out of a moral conviction, but to take this approach, ignores the reality, which is those with money will always get they want; those without will either suffer the results of their having been raped or go through unsafe and illegal means to accomplish that which the wealthy will do safely and legally in another country.
The religious right rail against the practice. “It’s murder!” In the time of Jesus in Judea, a Roman province, exposing children—leaving infants and toddlers in the wilderness and at the mercy of God—was a legal practice. It was not killing them directly because, I suppose, God (or the gods) could cause the child to be saved. This practice disgusts me and probably all Americans too. Find one place where Jesus spoke against it. In Exodus, causing a miscarriage was subject to a fine, not capital punishment.
Wrapped in religious words—which will bring the religious right to the polls—what the Republicans are doing is making it all-but-impossible for those without funds to flee the country for the procedure to have control over their reproductive systems. Make no mistake: rich people have abortions too.
It is like the parable of the Good Samaratin wherein the priest and Levite passed by the injured man while the Samaritan acted. I am sure the priest and Levite had good and honorable reasons for passing bye, but the long and a short of it was the man lay injured and their pre-occupation with what I was always taught to be religious positions prevented them from helping. Jesus touched the Lepers and in doing so, became unclean himself, but healed.
Do we piously ignore the needs of those who cannot avoid the law by flying elsewhere? Sure, we will be able to stand tall and claim we won one for our God and all, but at what price? The death of many women? Is this really what we want? It needs to be filed under health care and left to the doctor, the woman, her family and faith. We need to be the Samaritan.
I hate this topic.
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.
Protecting A Woman’s Right to Choose.
The Democratic Party strongly and unequivocally supports Roe v. Wade and a woman’s right to make decisions regarding her pregnancy, including a safe and legal abortion, regardless of ability to pay. We oppose any and all efforts to weaken or undermine that right. Abortion is an intensely personal decision between a woman, her family, her doctor, and her clergy; there is no place for politicians or government to get in the way. We also recognize that health care and education help reduce the number of unintended pregnancies and thereby also reduce the need for abortions. We strongly and unequivocally support a woman’s decision to have a child by providing affordable health care and ensuring the availability of and access to programs that help women during pregnancy and after the birth of a child, including caring adoption programs.