Abortion Funding in Oregon, Censoring Pro-Lifers, Forced Euthanasia, Rally in Ireland, and Celebrating Gershwin

SIGNS AND WONDERS

Oregon and Abortion. Oregon will soon be paying for abortions and contraceptives, due to a bill passed by the legislature there that Gov. Kate Brown has pledged to sign. The Reproductive Health Equity Act will cost the taxpayers of the state at least $10 million, and it includes about $500,000 to pay for services for illegal immigrants. Oregon Right to Life’s Gayle Atteberry said, “This bill is wrong on so many levels.” She explained that it is “morally reprehensible because it will take the lives of even more innocent Oregonians. Sadly, even the barbaric practice of late-term abortion will increase as abortion is legal in Oregon through all 9 months. This is not to mention that many Oregonians are opposed to the use of their tax dollars to fund abortion.” A statement released by ORTL said, “This bill was pushed by Planned Parenthood, a big supporter of Democrat majorities in the legislature, and Governor Brown, a former abortion lobbyist herself.”

Google Search. Is Google censoring Operation Rescue? The pro-life group says, “Yes.” According to a statement released by OR, “The fact page Abortions in America, was — until six weeks ago — OperationRescue.org’s most visited page. It previously appeared on Google in top five hits on the search ‘Abortions in US,’ and was a top referrer to OperationRescue.org. It has since been buried off the first results page and well down the list. The page was also dropped off the first page of results for the search ‘Abortion Statistics,’ which had been one of Operation Rescue.org’s top search referrals.” OR says the page, created in 2012, has steadily received about 16,000 page views a month, and peaked at 37,111 views in January 2017. In June, it received only 1,512 page views. “Google’s censorship of our popular ‘Abortions in America’ page has revealed Google’s pro-abortion agenda that is determined to deprive the public from seeing the truth about abortion displayed in incontrovertible facts and statistics drawn from a number of sources, some of which are unique to Operation Rescue.org,” said Operation Rescue President Troy Newman. Google, however, says search results are based on many criteria, and OR was not singled out for special treatment.

Forced Euthanasia. A chilling report released by the Netherlands admits that the country euthanized more than 400 people who never requested to die. The 2015 report says this number was about 6 percent of the more than 7,000 people euthanized in the country that year. Alex Schadenberg of the Euthanasia Prevention Coalition said, “Let me make this clear. In almost every country, terminations of life without explicit request are considered homicide. Recently an Ontario nurse was sentenced to 25 years in prison for killing 8 nursing home residents in Southern Ontario.” He said euthanasia laws often foster this sort of abuse. Euthanasia has been legal in the Netherlands since 2002. In January 2016, euthanasia was extended to people with severe dementia in the Netherlands. It is among this population that many of the unrequested terminations of life take place.

Rallying For Life. “At least 70,000 people took part in the All Ireland Rally for Life on Saturday,” according to LifeSiteNews. The event takes place every year, but this year’s crowd was especially large because the country will vote soon on whether to retain the Eighth Amendment to the Irish Constitution, which protects the right to life. “Save The 8th” was the theme of this year’s event.

Remembering Gershwin. George Gershwin died 80 years ago today: July 11, 1937. When he died, of a brain tumor, he was only 38, but he left behind one of the 20th century’s most remarkable bodies of work, including “An American In Paris,” “Porgy and Bess,” and “Rhapsody in Blue.” Many of his songs have become jazz standards and key artifacts of what has become known as “The American Songbook.” The Greek philosopher Damon of Athens is supposed to have said, “Let me write the songs of a nation, and I care not who writes its laws.”  If Damon is right, there may be no better way to understand the American experiment than to listen to Gershwin’s music.

Image courtesy of YouTube. Illustration designed by Heidi Allums.

Warren Cole Smith is an investigative journalist and author as well as the Colson Center vice president for mission advancement.


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  • Gina Dalfonzo

    My fault, Phoenix — I usually check to make sure we have links to all the sources, but I was in a hurry yesterday and failed to do it. I apologize. I’m checking with Warren and will post the source when I have it.

    • Phoenix1977

      The information in the original Dutch statistics means quite something different than what Warren says in the article. The statistical overview says “Levensbeëndigend handelen zonder verzoek” (Actions to end life without request). That doesn’t mean euthanasia but, for example, also palliative sedation to reduce discomfort as well as ending of all treatment because no recovery is to be expected. Palliative sedation can be requested by both patient or loved ones (in case a patient can no longer speak for his- or herself) and doesn’t require official documentation as it can be orally requested. Most doctors would than document in the chart palliative sedation has been requested and approved (confirm the guidelines by the Royal Dutch Medical Association) but that is not required by law. Ending of treatment is a medical decision and no request of permission by patient of loved ones is required for that.
      So perhaps checking the accuracy of the data might be a good idea the next time, especially BEFORE accusing Dutch doctors of homocide of 431 patients. Also, checking the sources might be worth it. The English summary is from a Dutch study published in The Lancet in 2012, based on data from 2010 and has nothing to do with the overview from the Dutch Statistical Agency CBS.

      • Just One Voice

        What’s “palliative sedation”? I know what general sedation is, and I read about “palliative care” on the WHO website a bit. But I’ve never heard the term “palliative” before. So am curious what your insight is.

  • Gina Dalfonzo

    Warren sent two links, which I’ve added to the article above. One is the original report in Dutch; the other is an English-language summary of the findings.

  • Phoenix1977

    No, federal funding for abortion is illegal under the Hyde Amendment. But there is no law preventing the use of state funding for abortion.