Thursday, February 28, 2008

Whither Went the Condom Guy?

Earlier this week, Jill Stanek wrote about a video produced by pro-life UCLA students Lila Rose, et al. (the same students who produced the other video I blogged about earlier today) that showed UCLA "'health center' faculty enabling a planned boat orgy by stocking a student with enough condoms to raise the craft if it were sinking".

Said video is currently unavailable on YouTube:

When you pull it up on YouTube's site, it says, "This video has been removed due to terms of use violation."

There's a message on The Advocate (the pro-life students' newspaper) site confirming that it's been currently disabled, but — at least at this point — offers no further explanation as to when or why it was removed.

Jill just spoke with Lila, who told her:

We handed copies of our winter issue [PDF] directly to the vice chancellor and other officials under the chancellor's office. My suspicion is they contacted YouTube because our video reflected very poorly on them.

Interesting, isn't it, how birth control inevitably leads to damage control?

I'm Skeptical

...when I see a headline like this:

Flu shots urged to age 18

No doubt the champagne is being chilled in the posh offices of not a few pharmaceutical companies' CEOs right about now.

I've gotten exactly one flu shot in my life, when I was 16 (or so). In high school, I worked at a nursing home (in the dietary department), and all employees were given the opportunity to get a free flu shot. Not thinking much of it, I got one.

The following year, I decided — for reasons I can't recall — to forgo the shot. It's a good thing I did, as several of the employees who did get flu shots that year got the flu shortly thereafter.

Since then, when people have asked me if I'm interested in getting a flu shot, I say no, precisely because I don't want to get the flu.

Show Me the Money!

Earlier this week, UCLA pro-life students, led by junior Lila Rose (who made national news last year when she posed as an underage girl and secretly recorded a conversation in which a Planned Parenthood Los Angeles employee recommended that she lie about her age to avoid being reported as a victim of statutory rape, and was then threatened by PPLA with a lawsuit), have just released the latest edition [PDF] of their newspaper, The Advocate.

It's an eye-opener:

Over the summer, The Advocate... [had] an actor call [Planned Parenthood] clinics across the country and pose as a donor. The actor... communicated... a very racist agenda, the one Margaret Sanger, PP's founder, envisioned.

He... asked to donate money specifically for the abortions of African-American babies... to "lower the number of blacks in America." Despite his bigoted requests, no PP employee (or director of development, in one case) declined the tainted money.... In fact, some even went as far as agreeing with the antiblack agenda....

See — and hear — for yourself:

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Forgotten Chicago

I've just spent the last ten minutes starting to peruse a website called Forgotten Chicago.

I never knew this site existed until this morning, when I looked at today's Chicago Tribune; it gets front-page treatment in the Tempo section — well deserved, I might add.

If I don't blog for a while, it's probably becuase I'm continuing to peruse it.

I'm a total nerd when it comes to the history of big cities and their neighborhoods, industries, streets, architecture, signage, etc. — the sorts of things Forgotten Chicago highlights.

At the site, I feel like a kid in a candy store: there's so much great stuff, I scarcely know where to begin.

As I was reading the Tribune article, I was wondering if Forgotten Chicago had some connection to the website Forgotten New York, which I had first heard about a while ago — via Dawn Eden's blog, I think. (Upon first learning of that site, I was similarly agog, as not only am I an urbanophile, if you will, but I am also a Gothamophile. Although I've never lived in New York myself, I've thrice visited, and find the city utterly fascinating.)

Later, the article explains:

The site took some of its inspiration from Forgotten New York, probably the granddaddy of such city sites. It conducts occasional flesh-and-blood tours in good weather, something Forgotten Chicago also hopes to do this year. (They'd also like to do a Forgotten Chicago book.)

Would that they do!

"Not Your Father's Pornography"

A few months ago on the Catholic Dads Blog a post appeared (which, in turn, referred to this post by Father Valcheck on the blog Adam's Ale) about the unspeakable dangers inflicted on a father's children if they come into contact with his pornography (or any pornography, for that matter).

The latter elicited some insightful comments that are well worth checking out.

I came across these posts just a day or two after reading an article in the January 2008 issue of First Things titled "Not Your Father's Pornography".

My contribution to the comments section noted that Byassee's article is an excellent primer on just how bad the let's-see-how-far-we-can-push-the-limits porn of today is compared to that of, say, a generation ago. (It also has some beautiful reflections on the theological meaning of what sex really is.)

At the time, however, the full article was not available.

It is now.

If you read nothing else today, read that.

[Cross-posted at Catholic Dads]

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Isn't It Great That Her Freedom of Choice Is So Highly Respected? Oh, Wait...

From the Washington Times:

An evangelical Christian photographer was brought before the New Mexico Human Rights Commission after she declined for religious reasons to photograph a same-sex commitment ceremony.

When Elaine Huguenin of Albuquerque, N.M., declined in September 2006 an e-mail request from a lesbian couple to photograph their ceremony, one of the lesbians responded by lodging a human rights complaint with the New Mexico Human Rights Division, the state agency charged with enforcing state anti-discrimination laws and sending cases to the commission to be adjudicated.

HT: Sean Dailey at Blue Boar

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

This Is What the Catholic Church Is All About

A pro-life activist in California just sent us a link to this amazingly cool video put out by Catholics Come Home, a group I'd not heard of heretofore.

Check thou it out:

Monday, February 18, 2008

Bill Clinton Is Really Angry

From Students for Life of America:

Bill Clinton Lashes Out at Pro-Life Students in Steubenville

Follows Outburst of Rage Earlier in Canton, Ohio at Obama Supporter

STEUBENVILLE, OHIO - Agitated after being greeted by over a hundred pro-life students at a rally in Steubenville tonight, Clinton lost his temper yet again after losing his cool at an Obama supporter in Canton, Ohio. This time, Clinton lashed out during his speech at the pro-life students:


"I gave you the answer. We disagree with you," Clinton said. "You wanna criminalize women and their doctors and we disagree. I reduced abortion. Tell the truth, tell the truth, If you were really pro-life, if you were really pro-life, you would want to put every doctor and every mother as an accessory to murder in prison. And you won't say you wanna do that because you know, that you wouldn't have a lick of political support. Now, the issue is who, the issue is, you can't name me anybody presently in politics that did more to introduce policies that reduce the number of real abortions instead of the hot air putting out to tear people up and make votes by dividing America. This is not your rally. I heard you. That's another thing you need is a president, somebody who will stick up for individual rights and not be pushed around, and she won't."

An ABC News reporter commented, "He was so angry, we, in the press, couldn't keep up with what he was saying."

Friday, February 15, 2008

Failure Is Not an Option

Remember that spy satellite that lost power and is falling toward earth?

As of a few weeks ago:

[Gordon Johndroe, a spokesman for the National Security Council] would not comment on whether it is possible for the satellite to be perhaps shot down by a missile. He said it would be inappropriate to discuss any specifics at this time.

Now, apparently, it is appropriate, and plans are being made to shoot it down with a Standard Missile 3:

U.S. will try to shoot down disabled, toxic spy satellite

By Aamer Madhani | Washington Bureau
February 15, 2008

WASHINGTON - The Navy is preparing to shoot a faltering U.S. spy satellite out of the sky in the next two weeks using a tactical missile that was manufactured as a defensive weapon to head off enemy aircraft, the Pentagon announced on Thursday.

While it's not uncommon for space junk to fall out of the sky, military officials said they are concerned in this case because much of the 1,000 pounds of frozen rocket fuel called hydrazine on the spacecraft could survive the descent and pose health risks, such as damage to skin and lung tissue, if it lands in a populated area.

Marine Gen. James Cartwright, vice chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, and James Jeffrey, the deputy national security adviser, said the Navy's window of opportunity to strike the satellite before it enters the Earth's atmosphere begins in the next three or four days.

If the satellite is not intercepted, it is expected to enter the atmosphere in late February or early March.

"This has no aerodynamic properties," Cartwright said of the satellite. "Once it hits the atmosphere, it tumbles, it breaks apart. It is very unpredictable and next to impossible to engage. So what we're trying to do here is catch it just prior to the last minute ... outside the atmosphere."

Three Navy ships will deploy in the Pacific Ocean to launch the missile. Cartwright declined to specify an exact location beyond stating it would be in the Northern Hemisphere. At the time of the launch, officials said the satellite would be about 150 miles above the Earth.

Software for the Strategic Missile 3, designed as an anti-aircraft system, is being modified to adjust for the bus-size satellite. Military officials have "high confidence" that the missile will strike the satellite and puncture its fuel tank.

If the first attempt fails, officials would have to decide whether to take another shot, but it could be "next to impossible" to strike on a subsequent attempt, Cartwright said. [emphasis added]

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

"Abortion Profiteers"

Operation Rescue reminds us that 30 years ago today, the Chicago Sun-Times began running its eye-opening "Abortion Profiteers" series — for which, even now, three decades later, we still occasionally get requests for reprints.

On February 13, 1978, the Chicago Sun-Times, aided by pro-life activist Joe Scheidler, published the first of a seven part series titled “Abortion Profiteers” that exposed unsafe and downright horrifying conditions at Chicago area abortion mills.

The result?

Two abortion mills were closed, one abortionist lost his license and a grand jury convened to investigate them further.

If anything, conditions at America’s abortion mills are even worse today.

Operation Rescue has followed Scheidler’s example and worked hard to document and “expose the unfruitful works of darkness” as manifested in the abortion industry, and now the word is finally starting to get out.

The LA Times published a shocking story about a Southern California abortion mill chain last week, and the Chicago-Tribune ran a front-page story on the grand jury investigation of late-term abortionist George Tiller earlier this week. These are just the latest in a growing number of news articles that have revealed the seedy reality of today’s shockingly hazardous abortion industry. We pray such exposés will help our nation to wake up to the dangerous and predatory nature of America’s abortion mills, and bring a permanent end to decriminalized abortion.

The Sun-Times today said this about the series:

n 1978, the Chicago Sun-Times wasn't interested in the morality of abortion when it spent five months looking at the procedure. The paper wanted to know: Were women who had abortions here receiving the safe, competent care the U.S. Supreme Court said they were entitled to back in 1973?

What Sun-Times investigative reporters Pam Zekman and Pamela Warrick -- working with the Better Government Association -- found in their series "The Abortion Profiteers" was, in some cases, downright terrifying.

The Sun-Times/BGA team had people work undercover in six Michigan Avenue clinics. The team uncovered incompetent and unqualified doctors who performed abortions without giving their patients anesthetics. Sometimes, it made no difference if a woman was actually pregnant -- she'd still be sold an abortion.

In one truly horrifying case, a couple was sent to a disreputable Detroit abortionist whose dog accompanied the nurse into the operating room -- then lapped up blood from the floor.

The series prompted immediate action. Within two weeks, two abortion clinics were closed down, a doctor's license was revoked, a criminal investigation was launched and a governor's task force was appointed to re-evaluate the state's regulation and licensing of abortion clinics and counselors.

One abortion doctor highlighted in the Sun-Times' series renounced his work and became a member of the Moody Church on North La Salle. The doctor, Arnold Bickham, once described himself to Zekman as "the most notorious physician in this city." He indicated he made $1 million a year performing abortions. His medical license was temporarily suspended because, according to the state, he had operated on women who weren't pregnant and rushed abortions so much that he didn't even wait until the anesthesia set in.

Bickham eventually quit the church and returned to performing abortions. His medical license was revoked in 1988. He later became an administrator at Chicago Public Schools.

See also a PDF of the Sun-Times front page from 13 February 1978 here.


If you're ever looking for incomparably comprehensive, thoroughly documented information about just anything having to do with abortion, check thou out Christina Dunigan's Real Choice blog.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Na Na Na Na Na Na Na Na Leader


When I hear the junior senator from our fair corrupt state say things like this:

So I am going to try to be so persuasive in the 20 minutes or so that I speak that by the time this is over, a light will shine down from somewhere.

It will light upon you. You will experience an epiphany. And you will say to yourself, I have to vote for Barack. I have to do it.

...I can't help but call to mind the time the Simpsons join the Movementarians:

In the episode, a cult called the "Movementarians" takes over Springfield, and Homer and the rest of the Simpson family become members. Homer and Bart are initially introduced to a pair of young Movementarian recruiters in an airport. Homer becomes brainwashed, and moves his family into the cult compound...

Homer takes Bart to the airport to greet the local football team after their championship loss. At the airport, Homer meets Glen and Jane, a pair of recruiters for a new religion called Movementarianism. They invite Homer to an introductory session at their resort, where a number of Springfield residents watch a video about the religion. The video explains that the Movementarians plan to take a spaceship to the planet Blisstonia. They are guided by a mysterious male figure known only as "The Leader." Most of the attendees are brainwashed into worshipping The Leader, but Homer does not pay enough attention to the video to be affected. After trying other methods, Glen and Jane finally convert him by singing the theme to Batman, replacing the word Batman with the word Leader.

BTW, be sure to check out the brilliant (relatively new) blog Is Barack Obama the Messiah?

Reason #684325203746 Why Breast Milk Is Better Than Formula

Not to mention why the push to pursue embryonic stem cell research exclusively is a racket:

Breast Milk Contains Stem Cells

This is fascinating:

The Perth scientist who made the world-first discovery that human breast milk contains stem cells is confident that within five years scientists will be harvesting them to research treatment for conditions as far-reaching as spinal injuries, diabetes and Parkinson’s disease.

But what Dr Mark Cregan is excited about right now is the promise that his discovery could be the start of many more exciting revelations about the potency of breast milk...

“The point is that many mothers see milks as identical – formula milk and breast milk look the same so they must be the same. But we know now that they are quite different and a lot of the effects of breast milk versus formula don’t become apparent for decades. Formula companies have focussed on matching breast milk’s nutritional qualities but formula can never provide the developmental guidance.”

It was Dr Cregan’s interest in infant health that led him to investigate the complex cellular components of human milk. “I was looking at this vast complexity of cells and I thought, ‘No one knows anything about them’.”

His hunch was that if breast milk contains all these cells, surely it has their precursors, too?

His team cultured cells from human breast milk and found a population that tested positive for the stem cell marker, nestin. Further analysis showed that a side population of the stem cells were of multiple lineages with the potential to differentiate into multiple cell types. This means the cells could potentially be “reprogrammed” to form many types of human tissue.

Friday, February 8, 2008

A Powerful Testimony

Jennifer at "Et tu?" (The Diary of a Former Atheist) has an amazingly insightful, I-can't-say-enough-good-things-about-it post titled "How I became pro-life".

Check thou it out.


As I am wont to do upon getting to work, I spent the first few minutes this morning slogging through e-mails — the vast majority of which were spam.

Then, in mid-slog, I noticed one particular message that had "" in the "From" line and "February 73% OFF" in the subject line.

Great, I thought. Some spammer is using my e-mail address.

So if you, dear reader, received this message from said e-mail address this morning, it goes without saying that that it was not sent by me:

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

A Dose of Humility

A few years ago, Jocelyn gave me a holy water font for Christmas. Since then, we've tried to get our kids in the habit of frequently blessing themselves with holy water.

Last night, five-year old Teresa got some holy water from the font with her left hand, and I gently reminded her that we're supposed to use our right hand.

"Why do we use our right hand?"

Caught off-guard and honestly not knowing the answer, I had to admit as much: "You know, Teresa, that's a really good question. I don't know why."

To which she deadpanned with the unique innocence of a five-year old: "I thought you were smart."

Coming on the eve of Lent, this was a welcome dose of humility for me.

[Cross-posted at Catholic Dads]

Voter Fraud: As Easy As Taking Candy from a Baby

What kind of country do we live in where one needs to show exactly zero forms of ID when one goes to vote?

(Or is it just a Chicago/Cook County thing?)

Monday, February 4, 2008

Obvious? Or Not?

Commenting on my post last week where I opined that it was "bleeding obvious" that Giuliani had no chance of ever getting the Republican presidential nomination, faithful Lunch Break reader, fellow parishioner, fellow blogger and all-around mensch "The Dutchman" commented thusly:

Obvious? I don't think it is so obvious when 47% of Republicans and 65% of the total electorate are "Pro-Choice."

We are seeing more and more "Pro-Choice" Republicans like Arlen Specter, Fred Thompson, and George E. Pataki, not to mention flip-flopers like Mitt Romney because two-thirds of the electorate favors access to first-trimester abortions and Republicans are simply not willing to fall on their swords for abortion at the polls.

Maybe I'm just being cynical, but I think that until we change the way Americans think about abortion, no politician is going to buck a 2/3 majority, and a vote on that issue is simply wasted.

I wanted to bring this comment to the main page because he raised some points here and in a previous related post on his own blog that I wanted to speak to, but haven't yet had the time to do so. I'm hoping that by posting this, it will prompt me to do so one of these days in the not too distant future.

My Response


I don't have time now to offer anything more than a cursory reply, but I hope to spend some time later this week or next speaking to some of the points you made here, as well as in your recent post on your blog about voting. I plan to do that in a post of its own.

For now, what I can say regarding what was, in my opinion, the inevitability that Giuliani would not get the GOP nomination, is this:

To be sure, there are plenty of Republicans — elected officials, movers and shakers within the party's power structure, and rank-and-file voters — who are "pro-choice". (Although it seems odd that Fred Thompson was included in your list. Did you mean to say "Big" Jim Thompson instead?)

There are also plenty more Republicans — again, elected officials, movers and shakers within the party's power structure, and rank-and-file voters — who, at best, merely pay lip service to the concerns of pro-lifers.

My point, though, is that there are enough people in both of the aforesaid camps within the GOP — especially the latter — who plainly recognize that it would be impossible for the party to win an election if it nominated a pro-abort. Doing so would lead to a mass defection of those for whom opposition to abortion is the issue. Many would vote third party, or simply stay home.

The day may well come when the GOP moves to definitively break with pro-lifers and nominates a pro-abort for president.

But that day was not going to come in 2008.

Friday, February 1, 2008