March for Life Statement on Supreme Court Confirmation Hearings

 

“As Judge Gorsuch’s confirmation hearings come to a close, I’m even more excited about him as the nominee. It has been said that you can tell a person’s character by how they respond to difficult situations and over the past few days, we have seen Judge Gorsuch’s true character shine. Judge Gorsuch is not only exceptionally qualified for the role of Supreme Court justice in education, experience and knowledge, but he is also a man of deep integrity, he possesses the perfect temperament, and holds an unwavering commitment to the separation of powers. Judge Gorsuch will make an excellent addition to our nation’s high court and I look forward to the future with him on the Supreme Court.”

– Jeanne Mancini, March for Life President

What’s Happening on Capitol Hill?

 

Have you been following what’s happening in our Nation’s capital this week?

On Monday, confirmation hearings for Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch began, and negotiations over health care legislation to replace the “Affordable Care Act,” or “Obamacare,” have been taking place all week.

In case you missed it, March for Life President Jeanne Mancini had two op-eds published on these important pro-life issues:

>>>>> On Supreme Court nominee, Judge Neil Gorsuch, in “Time Magazine.”

>>>>> On the American Healthcare Act, co-authored with Family Research Council President Tony Perkins, in “The Hill.”

You can also watch this brief video update with Jeanne Mancini, and President of March for Life Action, Tom McClusky, regarding the confirmation hearings and the ongoing developments with the healthcare legislation.

Our pro-life work is a year-round effort, whether it’s working to build a culture of life, or advocating for pro-life policies. We are here to help you stay engaged and informed about this important work.

We hope you find these updates helpful. Be sure to check out these Twitter highlights from the March for Life and team below, and follow us for continued updates!


World Down Syndrome Day: The Life of Noah Smith

 

On World Down Syndrome Day, the March for Life Instagram was “taken over” by Noah and Rick Smith. Noah’s dad writes, “Will you help us share the story that Down syndrome is ok? We believe that Noah has a story worth sharing, and we hope you’ll help us share his story; the story that all children (regardless of a disability) are so worth loving.”

You can see the sweet pictures from Noah’s life and read about his story below, as well on instagram.com/marchforlife.

We are so thankful for the precious life of Noah, and each and every individual with Down Syndrome. Each and every child has dignity and value, and is worthy of love!

And be sure to follow Noah online!

 

“Happy World Down Syndrome Day! 6 years ago we didn’t know this day would mean anything to us. This is the first time Noah’s mom held Noah. We had just been delivered the news that Noah likely had trisomy 21 (Down syndrome.) A surprise to everyone involved except the One who created Noah in the womb. We never thought we would be crying tears of sorrow during the birth of our son, crying late into the night about what this meant for our family and what this meant for Noah. What did his future look like? What would he be able to do? We had so many questions. Little did we know that this little boy would change our lives and hearts in ways I never imagined. (We’ll be sharing our story all on social media, the tears are replaced with joy very soon!)” 

 

“We started our journey knowing that we wanted to do everything we could to help Noah succeed. Early intervention with physical, occupational and speech therapy is one of the best ways to do this. We had an amazing therapist who encouraged us and challenged Noah. They researched techniques to help Noah succeed and achieve his milestones. He was put on a treadmill at 9 months of age to help him learn to walk and was frequently seen practicing with a therapy dog making laps around the clinic. This particular dog is why we now have a giant golden doodle named Jake. Needless to say I don’t think he meets the qualifications for a therapy dog, but he is a great addition to our family.”

 

 

“Noah has changed our lives for the better in so many ways! We wouldn’t change one chromosome in his body. Our love for Noah has turned us into advocates. A role I never thought I would call myself. We want to shout from the rooftops that having Down syndrome is OK! In fact it is pretty awesome. Does it come with challenges, of course, but what life doesn’t? This picture is from our annual Buddy Walk, which is just one way we advocate for our son. We also are involved in our local organization and have a large playgroup that gathers regularly with families that have a child with Down syndrome similar in age to Noah. The biggest way we advocate is through our blog and Facebook page. When we discovered that the termination rate for a pregnancy with a known diagnosis of Down syndrome can be upwards of 90% we knew we needed to do something. We have reached millions of people and shown them what life is like for a child with Down syndrome in hope that we can encourage people to choose life for their children.”

 

 

“Soon it was time for Noah to become a big brother. To say Noah rocked our world on how we value life is an understatement. One of the saddest statements I hear when talking about pregnancy is “I don’t care if it is a boy or girl as long as it’s healthy”. It pains my heart because you are hoping you don’t have a Noah. Our challenge with this pregnancy was to change our mindset. We wanted to be the best parents to the child God blessed us with. We tried to avoid praying for certain things for our child or having expectations much like we did with Noah. Is it ok to pray for health? Of course. But are you going to love your child less if there is something different or if they are in fact sick? Probably not. All life is valuable in the womb from those without any complications to those that don’t get to be held in their momma’s arms. Noah was blessed with a baby brother who despite being 3 is still lovingly called “baby”.”

 

 

“Noah has had more experiences in his young life than most have in their entire life. He hasn’t hindered our life adventures but only added to them and made them much more fun. He has traveled to New York, Disney World and Disneyland, Florida beaches, San Antonio, Austin, Houston, Colorado and even Mexico. He has a zeal for life like none I have ever seen. He loves thrill rides, music, and pools. He will hug your blues away. It is hard to not enjoy the moment when you have a little boy who is smiling and clapping his hands at your feet.”

 

 

“Our latest adventure has been helping Noah be included in kindergarten. We have added more acronyms to our vocabulary than is probably necessary this year, such as IDEA, LRE, IEP, and ARD. All these help us get Noah the education he needs in the classroom with his peers. While we want Noah to learn his ABC’s, what I really want is for him to form community. I want him to be included in the neighborhood that he lives, for his neighbors to be his friends now and tomorrow. I have seen how inclusion is beneficial for both sides. I watch as Noah learns from others but then I also see his friends learn about compassion and diversity. I see them treat him exactly as they treat every other friend they have and it makes my heart smile each time.”

 

 

“Noah has grown into an amazing little boy. He has achieved so much more than I ever imagined in that hospital room 6 years ago. He is learning to swim and you can see he is doing quite well reaching his goals. He loves to play cars, go to movies and jump on his new trampoline. He is a big fan of the trapeze at the local jump park! He loves his friends at school and we frequently hear their names at home. His best friend is his little brother and they are nearly inseparable. He likes going to church and singing. He has been known to give his own sermon hand motions and all. His life today is so much more than I would have ever imagined.”

 

 

“The most important thing to remember about Noah is that Down Syndrome is only a small part of what defines him. As we celebrate World Down Syndrome Day, we celebrate his friends who are thriving and living lives with great purpose and meaning. They are graduating from high school, they are owning businesses, they are getting married and living independently, they have their own reality show. The most important message today is that those with Down syndrome are so much more like you than they are different. Their lives are valuable to our society and they are people worth knowing.”

 

Jeanne Mancini Op-Ed in Time Magazine

 

In an op-ed for Time Magazine, March for Life President Jeanne Mancini shares her thoughts on the Supreme Court nominee >>>>

Whether recognizing the HHS Mandate as oppressive to the many consciences it violates in both Hobby Lobby v. Sebelius and Little Sisters v. Burwell, or affirming that even a stillborn baby’s rights deserve protection in Pino v. United States, Judge Gorsuch consistently affirms that, as an originalist, respect for all life is of the utmost priority. 

>>>>  You can read the full op-ed HERE.

The Truth Matters: #Gosnell

 

Saturday, March 18 will be four years since the murder trial of Philadelphia abortionist Kermit Gosnell began.  Opening statements were given, in which the prosecutor, the Assistant District Attorney, called Gosnell’s operation a “house of horrors.”

>>> Who is Gosnell?

As a reminder, the Grand Jury Report, filed in 2011, opened with this statement:

This case is about a doctor who killed babies and endangered women.  What we mean is that he regularly and illegally delivered live, viable, babies in the third trimester of pregnancy – and then murdered these newborns by severing their spinal cords with scissors.  The medical practice by which he carried out this business was a filthy fraud in which he overdosed his patients with dangerous drugs, spread venereal disease among them with infected instruments, perforated their wombs and bowels – and, on at least two occasions, caused their deaths.  Over the years, many people came to know that something was going on here.  But no one put a stop to it.

>>> Gosnell: Not An Isolated Incident

Filmmakers Ann McElhinney and Phelim McAleer are in the process of making a movie about Gosnell’s crimes and the media cover-up. In preparation for the movie, they recently released a book, “Gosnell: The Untold Story of America’s Most Prolific Serial Killer.”

At the 2017 March for Life Youth Rally, McElhinney and McAleer shared about their work. They mention that both the Gosnell book and movie talk about the #Gosnell tweetfest that helped bring the media’s attention to the trial! You can watch their five-minute presentation below:

 

After the Youth Rally, they held a book signing at the March for Life Expo. You can find out more information about the book HERE.

There have been broad conversations in the media and politics lately about newsroom bias, “fake news,” etc. There was no more egregious example of media malpractice than the Gosnell trial. Journalist Mollie Hemingway recounts “Kermit Gosnell Denialism” HERE and you can read journalist Kiersten Powers’ op-ed drawing attention to Gosnell in USA Today HERE.

The truth matters. It mattered when it came to covering the atrocities of the Gosnell trial, and it matters each and every day when it comes to the tragedy of abortion. Thankfully, Gosnell went on to be convicted, but the truth is that innocent unborn babies still die every day in abortion facilities across the country, and women are lied to about the traumatic procedure.

Help us share the message that truth matters when it comes to abortion!

Every Life is Compatible with Love

 

“They [our doctors] were recommending that we terminate the pregnancy, because ‘what’s the point? Your child is not going to make it so you’re just delaying the inevitable.’”

This is how Thomas and Elizabeth Gravely recount the experience of learning their unborn child had a fatal chromosomal condition. However, the Gravelys resisted pressure to abort and were blessed with seven months with their son, Thomas, Jr.

“I would not trade the many moments of joy and peace for all of the suffering that came from Thomas’ diagnosis and passing.  Thomas inspired more people in his seven months than most do in their lifetimes,” writes Elizabeth.

>>> Doctors Told Me To Abort My Disabled Child, But He Became #MyUnintendedJoy, the Federalist

Tragically, many parents that are faced with the diagnosis of a fetal abnormality are told that their baby is “incompatible with life.” This is particularly common for babies diagnosed with various forms of Trisomy. According to Trisomy.org,

“Trisomy refers to three copies of a chromosome. When three copies of any one of the chromosomes are present, rather than the normal two, the outcome is 47 chromosomes in the cell, instead of the usual 46.  In the case of trisomy 18 and 13, this extra chromosome results in congenital malformations, serious developmental and motor delays, and a high incidence of mortality.

Trisomy 18 (Edwards syndrome) is the second most common autosomal trisomy syndrome and trisomy 13 (Patau syndrome) is the third most common autosomal trisomy syndrome with trisomy 21, Down syndrome, being the most common.”

March is Trisomy Awareness Month, and here at the March for Life, we want to spread the message that every life is compatible with love.

Thankfully, many families like the Gravelys have shared their stories of choosing life despite their difficult circumstances. The medical community is also showing advances in programs to care for families who continue their pregnancies despite grave prenatal diagnoses. The Wall Street Journal recently reported on one such program at New York Presbyterian Children’s Hospital. The pioneering doctor who heads the program, Dr. Elvira Parravicini, encourages mothers and fathers to hold their child as much as possible after birth. “They need to live a beautiful life, enjoying whatever is possible for them to enjoy,” she says.

>>> When Parents Know Their Newborns Won’t Live Long, the Wall Street Journal

Furthermore, there are many wonderful resources available to parents facing a difficult prenatal diagnosis. See our compilation below and please feel free to share.

Parents facing a poor prenatal diagnosis deserve love, compassion, and high-quality care and support. We hope you will join us in spreading the message this month that every life is a gift and sharing these wonderful resources.

 

Resources:

Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep – a ministry of professional photographers will take photographs of infants who have critical medical conditions for no charge.

Be Not Afraid – a comprehensive website helping parents with prenatal diagnosis get information and referrals

SOFT – The Support Organization for Trisomy 18, 13 and Related Disorders.

International  Trisomy Alliance  – featuring e-books to help Trisomy families  and their most recent “Trisomy 18 and Trisomy 13 – Preparing for your Baby’s Arrival.

American Journal of Medical Genetics Report – “Our children are not a diagnosis: The experience of parents who continue their pregnancy after a prenatal diagnosis of Trisomy 13 or 18.

Gift of a Lifetime – a resource from Focus on the Family for families facing a life-limiting diagnosis for their unborn baby, that presents the option of perniatal hospice. Also, in Spanish, Un Regalo Inimitable.

When Love Wins – a booklet from Focus on the Family about continuing a pregnancy after an adverse diagnosis, and it addresses a prenatal diagnosis of special needs.

Be A Voice – Focus on the Family’s Dignity of Human Life magazine with Scripture, quotes, research, stories, etc about life issues across the spectrum, including special needs.

Embracing Grace Peer Ministry, Diocese of Richmond.

Prenatal Diagnosis Support, Archdiocese of Philadelphia.

Archdiocese of Washington Affirming Life Initiative – Resources for Clergy and Pastoral Workers, including training videos.

Prenatal Partners for Life – prenatal diagnosis website and support information.

Caring Bridge – a free social network tool for parents who have children with medical challenges.

Sibling support: “Sib shops” provide support to brothers and sisters of persons who have special health care needs, have developmental disabilities or have a mental health challenge.

 

Week in Review: March 6 – 10, 2017

 

Jeanne Mancini on EWTN News Nightly

Quotes from Jeanne Mancini and Tom McClusky

Fox news: Abortion language in GOP bill draws criticism from both sides of the aisle

Daily SIgnal: Pro-Life Groups Sound Caution on Obamacare Replacement Bill

Washington Times: Pro-life movement remembers victims of abortion on ‘A Day Without a Woman’

 

Statements

March for Life Statement on International Women’s Day

March for Life Action Statement on The American Health Care Act

 

Blog Posts

Three Pro-Life Things You Can Do This Month

International Women’s Day: Pro-Life is Pro-Woman

 

Top Facebook Posts

Top Tweets

Top Instagram Posts

March for Life Statement on International Women’s Day

 

“While many participate in “A Day Without a Woman”, it is important to remember the millions of women who are permanently absent because of abortion. Since 1973, abortion has silenced over 55 million children in the United States, and continues to oppress millions of women, both in our nation and abroad. Women around the world face forced abortions, sterilizations, and the female-targeting practice of gendercide – a gender-selective horror that accounts for the disappearance of at least 100 million girls worldwide. 

It has been said — politically and culturally — that for one to be pro-woman, one must be in favor of abortion. This couldn’t be farther from the truth. Abortion doesn’t help women or their children – it tears their lives apart. The truth is that life is an empowering choice for women and their developing babies. 

On International Women’s Day and every day, we at the March for Life are committed to working towards a world where every person – woman or man, born or unborn — is treated with inherent dignity and respect.”

– Jeanne Mancini, March for Life President

Three Pro-Life Things You Can Do This Month

 

After the March for Life, we often hear from participants, “how can I stay involved all year long?”

To help provide suggestions for year-round involvement, each month we will send you three action items that promote a culture of life. Are you up for the challenge?

(Sign up below to get these sent to you each month!)

post-march action alerts
Sending

March Action Items

March 8th is International Women’s Day – will you help us share the message that pro-life IS pro-woman?

It has been said — politically and culturally — that for one to be pro-woman one must be pro-choice. But nothing could be further from the truth. Sadly, there are so many confusing messages regarding women and the issue of abortion, compounded by the false “war on women” rhetoric and many of these false messages are being pushed today.

The truth is that life is the empowering choice for women. Abortion harms women, and affects our society as a whole, in so many ways.

2. Contact your Senators to confirm Judge Neil Gorsuch to the U.S. Supreme Court

Judge Gorsuch is a strict constructionist. He also has a record of protecting life and conscience. You can read more about his record HERE from March for Life Action.

Confirmation hearings on Capitol Hill will begin on March 20 and it’s critical that during these days, our Senators hear from America’s pro-life majority. Our country has a pro-life consensus, with 80% favoring real legal limits on abortion. It’s time the Supreme Court reflected that consensus. The confirmation of Judge Gorsuch is the first step in that direction.

Click Take Action to send a message to your Senators to confirm Judge Neil Gorsuch to the Supreme Court!

3. World Down Syndrome Day

On Tuesday, March 21, join us in participating in World Down Syndrome Day and let the world know that we value our friends, family and neighbors with Down Syndrome – every life is a gift!  We will share more resources and educational information throughout the month and on World Down Syndrome Day.

You can start by signing the international petition “Stop Discriminating Down” which petitions the U.N. Human Rights Council to stop systematic prenatal screening programs that target Down syndrome and deliberately encourage abortion as part of public health programs.

 

There is much work to be done to build a culture of life. Here at the March for Life, we are working each and every day on Capitol Hill, in the media, and on social media to make abortion unthinkable and we are asking you to join us.

Thank you!

 

March for Life Statement on The American Health Care Act

 

March for Life Statement on The American Health Care Act

“House Leadership and those who drafted the American Health Care Act deserve high accolades for their efforts to make certain that any changes to the health care system do not encourage, subsidize or directly pay for abortions.  They also deserve praise for sticking to their commitment to eliminate Planned Parenthood, America’s largest abortion provider, from Medicaid reimbursements for one year. This will redirect women to Federally Qualified Health Centers – which provide all of the health services American women need and outnumber Planned Parenthood clinics by a ratio of 20:1.

With that being said, there is still a great deal of work to be done to ensure that this entire bill is pro-life, specifically with regards to tax credits and health care savings – ensuring that neither go to pay for abortion. Our message is simple: Abortion IS NOT healthcare, and our laws should reflect this basic principle.

We look forward to working within the legislative process to fix such problems and guarantee that pro-life protections are included.”

– Tom McClusky, Vice-President of Government Affairs, March for Life Action