When I started seeing notices from national Prolife organizations promoting HR 36, The Pain Capable Unborn Child Protection Act, I honestly didn’t give it a whole lot of thought, since D&E abortions – the procedure used in abortions from 13 to 24 weeks – are insanely barbaric and horrifically gruesome procedures that kill babies by ripping them limb from limb.
With that thought in mind, most of us are fully on board – we need to end this evil, and HR 36 may just do it!
But not so fast… what does the bill actually say?
What does it actually prevent?
And what does it actually accomplish? Let’s take a look:
The first 14 paragraphs outline the unborn child’s ability to feel pain – and Congress’s authority to “extend protection to pain-capable unborn children…”
Wait! If Congress has the authority to “extend protection to pain-capable unborn children,”
WHY NOT ALL UNBORN CHILDREN?
Let’s tackle this one right away: this bill is co-sponsored by 182 member of congress and strongly supported by National Right To Life, whose mission is to “…protect and defend the most fundamental right of humankind, the right to life of every innocent human being from the beginning of life to natural death.”
Their founder, Dr. John Wilke’s, wrote in his book, Abortion: Questions and Answers”
“The ultimate prolife goal is quite direct and very simple. Prolifers want an amendment to the U.S. Constitution, to the Canadian Charter of Rights that will give equal protection under the law, to all living humans from the time their biologic life begins at fertilization until natural death.”
The basis for such a goal is what we call Personhood:
“…the recognition by our culture and our government that each individual human life has an “unalienable” right to life from its earliest biological beginning. This right to life extends to natural death, regardless of one’s disability, gender, race, dependency or manner of conception. The “unalienable” right to life comes from God by virtue of the fact, that we have been created in His image and are thus imbued with a unique worth and dignity not found in the rest of creation.”
- Personhood: A Pragmatic Guide to Prolife Victory in the 21st Century and the Return to First Principles in Politics
So here we have a bill that’s protecting unborn children that can feel pain and are older than 20 weeks gestation.
But if we’re to “protect and defend…the right to life… from the beginning of life to natural death,” it seems we’re leaving some out.
Did babies under 20 weeks gestation just lose their right to protection as persons?
Did I read that right? By excluding babies under 20 weeks gestation, does HR 36, The Pain Capable Unborn Child Protection Act, actually dehumanize those babies?
I’m kind of a nerd… I have a background in commercial banking and insurance, and I’ve solved a lot of problems by just doing some simple math.
Please don’t misunderstand me – not a single baby that dies in an abortion is a number to me. In no way am I going to dehumanize unborn children. In fact, I hope to do just the opposite.
The math is simply a means of understanding and explaining what’s really at stake here.
This bill, HR 36, The Pain Capable Unborn Child Protection Act, is designed to save the lives of unborn babies at risk of abortion when they’re over 20 weeks gestational age.
Just how many is that, in comparison to those under 20 weeks gestation? According to the Centers For Disease Control (CDC):
Let’s look at this another way: For every 100 unborn babies at risk of being murdered in their mothers’ wombs, fewer than 2 are over 20 weeks gestation.
When we talk about dehumanizing the children in the womb, I’m starting to see that this bill, HR 36, The Pain Capable Unborn Child Protection Act, dehumanizes the vast majority of children in the womb.
Let’s consider this from another point of view:
1.28% of babies killed by abortion in 2013 were 20 weeks gestation or older.
I’ve never liked pie charts – they seem to be useful to engineers and economists, but don’t quite make the point when we’re talking about lives. So let’s take away the sterile pie chart and examine the dehumanizing of babies under 20 weeks gestation from a different point of view:
What I’ve found while trying to understand what National Right To Life and our elected representatives are trying to accomplish is that the outcome is simply not worth pursuing.
But then the bill goes even farther off the rails where the bill actually gives abortionists the right and authority to determine when to commit an abortion:
- “Requirements For Abortions,” and that gestational age must be determined by a “…reasonably prudent physician.”
- “Prohibition of Performance of Certain Abortions…generally for unborn children 20 weeks or older.”
- And the ever so sadly included “Exceptions:”
- “… in reasonable medical judgment, the abortion is necessary to save the life of a pregnant woman whose life is endangered…”
- Or when “… the pregnancy is the result of rape…”
Okay, we have some REALLY BIG PROBLEMS here… Congress claims the authority to “extend protection to pain-capable unborn children,” but somehow, their authority is checked by:
- The age of the unborn child – under 20 weeks, and Congress is powerless
- The “reasonable medical judgement” of the equally “reasonably prudent physician,” that the abortion is necessary to save the life of a pregnant woman.
- The fact that the mother was the victim of a horrendous violent sexual crime.
I keep asking myself, ‘what are they trying to accomplish with this bill?’
Wait just a second! The bill was written to, “to protect pain-capable unborn children…”
Does “compassion” for a woman that has been violently assaulted mean that the “pain-capable” child growing inside her loses that protection?
Rebecca Kiessling, president of Save The 1, and conceived in rape herself, makes the point that her “…people group feels the pain of discrimination every time so-called pro-life laws exclude us from protection.”
She goes on to say that, “…women who experience the horrific violation of rape deserve better than a law that promotes a second act of violence as a solution.”
Dr. Patrick Johnston, president of the Association of Pro-Life Physicians makes an excellent point that, “To permit the killing of some children is to abandon our moral high ground and God’s blessing. Our congressmen and women must protect all those they are duty- and constitutionally-bound to protect.”
So this leads me to a question I honestly had to answer:
Does the nature of conception make a baby more or less human?
Stop right there for just a moment… don’t just glance over that line. But take just a second – even if you whisper the answer to yourself…
Does the nature of conception make a baby more or less human?
YES or NO?
This bill has serious flaws:
If the baby is conceived in rape, she loses her right to life – even if she can feel pain.
If an abortionist determines the mother’s life is at risk, the baby loses her right to life, even if she can feel pain.
If an abortion is sought for a baby under 20 weeks, no protections are offered whatsoever!
I know what you’re thinking: yes, there’s more…
Christopher Kurka rightly points out that the bill lacks protections that would otherwise keep activist judges from creating a right to abortion.
Moreover, Christopher points out that this bill specifically denies personhood to babies before 20 weeks and actually creates greater precedent to the Supreme Court to keep Roe V Wade intact indefinitely.
Finally, Matt Sande, the Legislative Director at Pro-Life Wisconsin challenges all of us with:
“With Republicans in control of the House, Senate, and Oval Office, pro-lifers need to ask themselves some serious questions right now… Why aren’t we using this opportunity to put forth legislation that upholds our shared goal? And why are we allowing this current legislation to give cover to our politicians who continue to receive ‘100% pro-life’ ratings while directly undermining our efforts?”
It’s decision time…
You can disregard everything you’ve just read, or you’ve got to decide that you’ve got to do something about it.
Most people will do nothing at all…
Some have actually petitioned their legislators to support HR36…
But I’ve made it abundantly clear – supporting HR36 undermines the sanctity of human life, strips the right to life and personhood from 98.7% of all unborn children, and further enshrines into law the idea that children conceived in rape have zero right to life.
So here’s the plan: If you want to save lives and correct this dangerous piece of legislation, you’ve got to act right away. Don’t close this email and think you’ll get to it later – you’re busy and we both know there’s never a good time to come back.
- Sign the petition to amend HR36 HERE
- Sign the LIFE At Conception Act HERE.
- Support the cause – become financially invested in saving lives, right here in Alaska and across the nation. Donate HERE.
The LIFE At Conception Act, HB250 is the premier legislation that legally defines children in the womb as natural persons, guaranteeing them the right to life and legal protections that you and I enjoy – from conception to natural death.
You can find HR36 HERE
Get The Five For Life Friday Emails
You'll get weekly updates every... Friday!