Attack: HuffPo slams bishops for "war on women"

Attack: HuffPo slams bishops for "war on women" November 1, 2011

How low can the secular media go?  This low:

A group of men with no real background in law or medicine, but blessed with a strong personal interest in women’s bodies, have quietly influenced all of the major anti-abortion legislation over the past several years. The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops may be one of the quietest, yet most powerful lobbies on Capitol Hill, with political allies that have enabled them to roll back decades of law and precedent.

Over the past two years the GOP-controlled House of Representatives has launched one of the most extreme assaults on women’s choice the U.S. has seen in decades. Republicans voted twice to slash federal family planning funds for low-income women, moved to prevent women from using their own money to buy insurance plans that cover abortion, introduced legislation that would force women to have ultrasounds before receiving an abortion and, most recently, passed a bill that will allow hospitals to refuse to perform emergency abortions for women with life-threatening pregnancy complications.

But the erosion of women’s rights didn’t begin with the GOP takeover. President Barack Obama’s health care reform law contained some of the most restrictive abortion language seen in decades.

Lift the curtain, and behind the assault was the conference of bishops.

“It is a very effective lobby, unfortunately, and now they have an ally in the Republican majority because both groups find this a means by which to fight women’s health issues in general,” said Rep. Lois Capps (D-Calif.), a member of the House Pro-Choice Caucus. “The bishops carry a lot of clout.”

“We consider the two biggest opponents on the other side the Catholic bishops and National Right to Life,” said Donna Crane, policy director of NARAL Pro-Choice America. “They are extremely heavy-handed on this issue.”

While the bishops have always been vocal on the issue of choice, they have emerged since the 2009 health care reform debate as one of the most powerful anti-abortion advocates on Capitol Hill.

Now, they are stepping up their attack on women’s choice with a new, high-intensity campaign aimed at the latest front in the national anti-abortion battle: birth control. And the opposition is worried that they might have just enough sway over lawmakers to succeed.

Read the rest.

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13 responses to “Attack: HuffPo slams bishops for "war on women"”

  1. “introduced legislation that would force women to have ultrasounds before receiving an abortion and, most recently, passed a bill that will allow hospitals to refuse to perform emergency abortions for women with life-threatening pregnancy complications.”

    One of the great abuses of women by physicians is their denial for being able to give fully informed consent (because they are lied to by commission and by omission), and the assault on patient autonomy (which comes from failing to fully inform the patient).

    Listen to the endless stream of post-abortive women at Silent No More and Rachel’s Vineyard and one will hear the endless refrain that they were told “It’s just a blob of tissue,” or, “It’s just a clump of cells,” at 4 weeks, 8 weeks, 12 weeks, 16 weeks of gestation. One may even see this in some of the Lila Rose sting videos.

    Sure proaborts fear ultrasounds. That’s because 90% of women who see the baby decide to keep the baby.

    As for the red herring of life-threatening complications in pregnancy, we don’t kill one human in an effort to save another. Beyond that, pulmonary hypertension is about the only one of these cases left, and women can be managed medically until 21-23 weeks so that the baby can be taken by C-section. What is never discussed is that the woman with pulmonary hypertension will die within three years anyway, unless she has a heart and lung transplant. With rare exception, women in this state do all they can to bring their baby to 21-23 weeks for C-section and their best shot at life. Most bring them even further.

    I agree that the article is a hit piece, and I could spill an equal amount of ink countering the lies and half-truths. I just might over at my place.

  2. Yeah, I saw that one. Despicable is what that piece is. And after I read it I was so deeply thankful for those ‘men’ who stand up for my dignity as a woman.

  3. That something looks like a human person does not mean it is a human person – I assure that plastic dolls, however cute, however human-like, and however much they induce maternal feelings in young women, are not persons and are not even human: they are just lumps of plastic, able to reliably induce a certain psychological reaction.
    Forcing women to look at ultrascans will reliably do the same, and unless the truth is explicitly stated, many of those women will then make the bad decision to go on to have a child that is not wanted, to the detriment of themselves, society and the child.

    Those favouring compulsory ultrascans do so for largely dishonest reasons, and unless they insist equally on the truth being told, they are definitely dishonest.

    The truth that must be told is that the little thing growing inside is in no way a person, lacking every necessary characteristic of personhood, nor is it even a human being until some late point in pregnancy, at which time there are reasonable grounds for objecting to an abortion.

  4. Ah yes, the subject of sex and/or the roles of gender in the Catholic Church.

    In this corner are those labeled Cafeteria Catholics. They would like everybody to stay out of their bedrooms, stop concerning themselves with other people’s bodies, and accept that both genders have been created in God’s image and are equal in all things.

    In that corner are those some refer to as the Pelvic Police. They would like to decide all sexual issues for everybody, want the state to enforce by law what they could not convince people to do from the pulpit, and are determined to stop women from being near the altar.

    This is a unlimited round match — the count sometimes reaches 100 comments. There has never been a winner to the best of my knowledge. No minds have been changed by these verbal blows, but many participants feel better having struck a blow for their view.

    Your referee is Deacon Greg, who is very good at tempering or chiding either combatant when necessary, strives for fairness, and warns against low blows.

  5. I wonder if Felix Qui’s contribution here (#3) was intended to make the Huffington Post editorial sound like a rational effort to engage in dialogue.

  6. to #3 ‘that little thing’ is not part of the woman’s body and this is the point that I so often see cast aside when debates arise around this issue.

    The bishops are not ‘blessed with strong personal interest in women’s bodies’ – it’s the body that grows within a woman’s womb that they seek to protect. That separate, created entity. That LIFE.

    I support a woman’s choice to make decisions that relate to her body – and to her body alone – but I am right there with the bishops once another life is involved and the life that grows within her is not hers to choose to end.

  7. This huff piece seems like it is coming right from the Democratic Party play book and the party platform. Any attempt to discuss abortion limitations or issues comes under attack.

    If Catholics stood united in ending legal abortion for a couple elections cycles voting against any party that supported abortion, like slavery, legalized abortion would cease to exist and we would have a constitutional amendment in place to do so for all time. If the same Catholics supported marriage between one man and one woman as well as the Church teaches, then both of these things could have constitutional amendments in place in a few years making them as obsolete as slavery.

    If this happens, look at the changes in the political landscape. No more discussion of abortion or gay marriage forever in our country. These so called wedge issue would be removed from the discussion during every election cycle. We could discuss issues of how to deal with national defense and spending issues or the size and scope of the government and do it in a new way because we have put life and family in protected status. However, without a united Catholic vote, the Church will be forced to continue to battle in the arena of elections because the core of Catholic faith and that of many other religions is life is sacred and so is marriage and the family. With a united front, we would end politicians saying they are presonally opposed to abortion but voting to keep it legal. So those who say they are pro life can really end abortion with a simple declaration sent to the party of death that unless they change now, they will lose the votes until they do.

    This should be the advice of the USCCB and to do so would be to lead from a position of strength. Frankly, as many have alluded, with these issues removed, many Catholics would see a lot more comfort on the other issues democrats support and also their solutions.

  8. Another interesting post Deacon Greg.

    First, I am surprised you blame “secular media” for being “low” because of this story. Blame Huffington Post, if you want, but to paint with a broad brush all the good reporters trying to tell stories and hold a mirror up to their community is wrong, IMHO.

    After all, if tomorrow, the Cleveland Plain Dealer writes a interesting story about a parish, will you say how wonderful the secular media is?

    Two, I am curious how much of my money goes to pay for this lobbying. I put money in the collection basket for upkeep of my parish, which pays a tax to the diocese which then pays a tax to the USCCB. So, my money is ending up paying for this lobbying effort. Can someone – anyone – tell me, how much money is spent on the lobbying and how much is being spent on this ad-hoc committee for the defense of religious liberty? I am curious. Would you accept it if your mayor spent money on a project and wouldn’t reveal how much it cost to install a civic project? I don’t accept it.

    And I agree with what “Jake” wrote:

    “This is a unlimited round match — the count sometimes reaches 100 comments. There has never been a winner to the best of my knowledge. No minds have been changed by these verbal blows, but many participants feel better having struck a blow for their view.”

  9. Why is it that “women’s rights over their own bodies” are never extended to those women who are awaiting their own births? Where is that female infant’s rights over her own body, while in the womb?
    It would seem a woman is only considered a person “with rights” if she has the upper hand, if she has the physical advantage over another. Raw power then is what bestows rights in this scenario – if you are dependent on another, if you are small, weak, you are at the mercy of the powerful – you don’t count.
    Those that condemn men for lording over women with physical strength throughout the ages have so easily slipped into that role – becoming master over another’s life by sheer physical advantage.
    If you took any supposed justification for a woman’s mastery over the child in her women, I think you could substitute “man” for “woman”…and “woman” for “child” and see the past justification for a man’s “ownership” of a woman as a dependent creature …It’s my’s my property…etc….it’s not a real sentient person…

    It is perverse.

  10. Both Jake and Drew missed an important point.

    There are a number of referees in this fight — those that refuse to be drawn into the utter absurdity of those screaming on either the “hard right” or the “flaming left”– they include: Deacon Greg; “cathyf,” Deacon Bill, “hms,” Deacon Mike, Deacon Norb and even myself try to be voices of moderation and common sense. Generally, I find the postings of those other six folks to be vary valuable — even when they correct me because of stupid factual mistakes.

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