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News and commentary from the Pro-Life Action League
News and commentary from the Pro-Life Action League
In 1995 the Illinois Legislature passed the Parental Notice of Abortion Act. Today, after 18 years, the Illinois Supreme Court issued a unanimous ruling upholding it.
This parental notice bill has a long and convoluted history. Actually, Illinois had previously passed a parental consent bill in 1977. But it was found unconstitutional.
The legislature tried again in 1983, passing a parental notice bill. But it too was found unconstitutional.
Finally in 1995, the state passed a bill based on other state laws that had passed muster and were in effect. Pro-abortion Republican Governor Jim Edgar signed the bill into law, but the ACLU immediately challenged it due to what it claimed were unclear rules for the judicial bypass provision.
The Illinois Supreme Court never got around to issuing the necessary rules, so the parental notice law lingered in limbo. And in those 18 years, Illinois statistical records show that 67,928 girls under the age of 18 have had abortions in the state. [Continue reading ...]
On Saturday, May 20, the Pro-Life Action League held a sidewalk counseling seminar at St. Mary of the Angels Parish in Chicago for over 50 counselors and new recruits.
On account of the ongoing challenges over the enforcement of Chicago’s “bubble zone” ordinance, attorneys Tom Brejcha and Tom Olp of the Thomas More Society Pro-Life Law Center began the seminar by addressing the group about their First Amendment rights and what to be concerned about in the face of accusations and complaints from abortion clinic personnel and clinic escorts.
In 1925 it served as the convent for the Sisters of St. Benedict who taught at St. Timothy’s Catholic School. When the Sisters moved out, the building became a haven for refugees served by the Jewish Foundation of Metropolitan Chicago.
Today that building is the culmination of a dream Mary Zeien has had for decades.
The former convent is now a home for unwed mothers and their children. And it is truly a home, not just a safe haven or a shelter. The women are a big family.
Twelve young women and seventeen children call The Well of Mercy their home. They share in the usual tasks of a family—cooking, cleaning, child care, shopping. And last Thursday evening they invited us to dinner. [Continue reading ...]
Kermit Gosnell: Guilty on three counts of murder.
The Pro-Life Action League commends the jury for taking their job seriously, analyzing the evidence presented to them, and finding Gosnell guilty. But this case raises all sorts of issues beyond the charges of murder and other felonies, or even the a guilty verdict.
The abortion industry has tried to distance itself from the Gosnell “House of Horrors” as if a clean, sanitized abortion clinic is a much better place for babies to die, and, for that matter, mothers to die. Don’t forget Tonya Reaves, who had her abortion in a nice, clean Michigan Avenue abortion clinic operated by Planned Parenthood in Chicago. No guilty verdict in her case. In fact, no charges.
The Gosnell case forces America to look at the underlying conundrum of a society that accepts abortion as a legitimate choice, thereby admitting that the unborn baby has no standing among us. [Continue reading ...]
On Wednesday the Arkansas House of Representatives voted 56-33 to override Governor Mike Beebe’s veto of the Human Heartbeat Protection Act, which prohibits most abortions after the 12th week of pregnancy if a heartbeat can be detected. The Arkansas Senate had voted 20-14 to override the governor’s veto on Tuesday.
The new law specifies that any doctor providing an abortion “perform an abdominal ultrasound test necessary to detect a heartbeat of an unborn human individual according to standard practice.” A doctor stands to lose his medical license if he violates the law.
The Arkansas legislature also recently approved a law outlawing most abortions after 20 weeks. Governor Beebe had vetoed that law as well, but it too was overridden by the legislature. The 20-week law went into effect immediately. The 12-week restriction will go into effect 90 days after the close of the legislative session, expected at the end of March or early April. [Continue reading ...]
Joe Scheidler speaks to reporters after his Nov. 30, 2005 Supreme Court hearing [Photo by EJS]
The case had been to the Supreme Court three times. Originally filed in 1986, NOW v. Scheidler first reached the high court on December 8, 1993, where justices considered whether the RICO (Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations) law could be used against protesters.
On January 24, 1994 a 9-0 decision allowed the case to go forward to trial as a civil RICO action.
In 2003, the Court ruled 8-1 that a 1998 decision by a Federal District Court against Scheidler and other pro-life defendants must be vacated, but in 2004 the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals refused to implement the decision, buying the arguments of NOW’s lawyers that somehow the Supreme Court had overlooked something in its unequivocal 2003 decision. Scheidler then petitioned the Court for another hearing, and once again got certiorari. [Continue reading ...]
Father Richard Simon celebrates Mass on Jan. 22 at Queen of Heaven Cemetery in Hillside, IL [Photo by Matt Yonke]
The Pro-Life Action League marked the somber anniversary of Roe v. Wade with a call for prayer across the nation.
Invoking the words of Jesus in the Sermon on the Mount, the “Blessed Are They Who Mourn” project urged pro-lifers to go to a gravesite of aborted babies or Memorial to the Unborn on January 22 to mourn the loss of 55 million lives to abortion since the Supreme Court removed all protection from the unborn in 1973.
The League posted a list of hundreds of Memorials to the Unborn in cities and towns all over the United States in response to its nationwide request for information on where pro-lifers could go to pray on January 22.
In the Chicago area, where the Pro-Life Action League is based, the 40th anniversary of Roe v. Wade was commemorated with a Mass in the chapel at Queen of Heaven Cemetery in Hillside, Illinois. [Continue reading ...]
As we approach the 40th anniversary of the Roe v. Wade U. S. Supreme Court decision, striking down all protection for unborn children in the United States, there were several memorial events in the Chicago area over the weekend.
On Saturday morning, residents of the Fox Valley gathered at the Aurora Planned Parenthood mega-mill for the regular monthly protest and prayer vigil, with a special emphasis on the role of Planned Parenthood over the past forty years of legal abortion.
On Saturday afternoon, over 400 people gathered at St. Theresa Parish in Palatine for a prayer vigil led by Bishop George Rassas and a march to the plaza at Northwest Highway and Hicks Road, where Pro-Life Action League National Director Joe Scheidler was the featured speaker.
Saturday evening the Archdiocese of Chicago commemorated the Roe v. Wade anniversary with a Respect Life Mass at Holy Name Cathedral, celebrated by Bishop Alberto Rojas.
Sunday afternoon, the Chicago March for Life kicked off from Holy Name Cathedral at 1:30. Nearly 400 pro-lifers marched in the freezing cold to the historic Water Tower, where they heard talks by Joe Scheidler, along with WLS radio talk show host Dan Proft, and Couples for Christ president Manny Hermano, Special Assistant to Cardinal Francis George, Mary Hallan FioRito.
In addition to the above mentioned activities, dozens of parishes, churches and pro-life groups held memorial prayer services across the Chicagoland area. Later this week, many local residents will board buses and planes to join the annual March for Life in Washington, DC in both a spirit of solemnity as we mourn 55 millions lives lost, and a spirit of hope as we look forward to the day when abortion is unthinkable.
Front page of the Buffalo Courier Express, January 23, 1973
January 22, 1973. Anyone familiar with the abortion battles in America knows that date. This year we commemorate the 40th anniversary of the infamous Roe v. Wade Supreme Court ruling issued on that day.
But in 1973, the front page of newspapers across the country were full of other momentous news. Former President Lyndon Johnson died on January 22, 1973. Richard Nixon had just recently announced an end to hostilities against North Vietnam, and the Paris Peace Accords were being brokered.
My husband Joe Scheidler was down with the flu on January 22, 1973. I was pregnant with our fourth child, who turned out to be our first daughter, Cathy. Our three boys—Eric, 6; Joe, 5; and Peter, 3—occupied most of my attention. I didn’t look at the front page of the Chicago Tribune until late in the day on January 23. Joe didn’t read it until the next day.
But as we read the news we were incredulous. Illinois was a pro-life state in those days. Attempts to ease restrictions on abortions here had easily been defeated. We weren’t paying attention to the national fight to legalize abortion and did not even know there was a case before the U.S. Supreme Court.
We simply could not believe such a thing could happen. With a stroke of a pen, all abortion laws were struck down and unborn babies, like Cathy, just 4 ½ months in my womb, were dependent solely on their mothers for their right to be born. [Continue reading ...]
I arrived at the clinic about 9:15 on Thursday morning, as I do every Thursday.
A small gray car turned into the alley. I tried to offer literature to the driver, but he went on by and pulled into the parking lot, parked and got out with a small child. I called to him that we had help available at the Women’s Center, if he had someone in the clinic that he loved.
Just after trying to talk to the man, an ambulance came down Carmen Avenue and turned into the clinic alley. I pulled out my phone to get a picture and got one shot as the ambulance pulled just past the clinic gate to the back door of the facility. [Continue reading ...]