Tuesday, May 29, 2007
Liberals Rush in to Defend Justice Trout
The day after Justice Linda Copple Trout dropped her bomb on Idaho, the Liberal Media swooped in to provide fighter cover.
The Idaho Statesman defended Trout’s decision to flout the state’s Constitution. They wrote, “[Trout] performs one more service for Idahoans…” by deciding that she will try and rig things for her successor by circumventing the Constitution’s provision for electing members of the state’s highest court.
Editors at this liberal institution protected Trout’s rear by validating her claims that elections were simply too difficult for important folks like Justice Trout. They sought to legitimize the notion that candidates for the state’s highest court ought not be held accountable, nor should they be scrutinized by the general public.
The Statesman simply overlooked the very troubling breach of faith which underlies Trout’s resignation.
When she ran for office, Trout made a commitment to the people of Idaho that she would seek to fulfill her duties – including a commitment to finish her elected term. Now things happen – physical or family problems – which may make such a commitment difficult or even impossible to deliver. But Trout was blatant in telling Idahoans that she was resigning, not for good cause, or for reasons beyond her control – but because she wanted to crudely manipulate events in order to secure a successor to her personal liking. Such behavior betrays a gross arrogance; the Statesman is wrong in letting this slide.
Trout’s resignation presents a bold breach of faith on yet another, deeper, level. When she assumed this position of high trust, she publicly swore to uphold and defend the Constitution of Idaho. This end-run of its provisions demonstrates clearly that Justice Trout does not take that oath very seriously.
Which brings us to the heart of the problem: Idaho is fortunate to have inherited from our forebears a Constitution providing for a public check upon judicial abuse of power. We see first-hand the great problems created by a runaway federal judiciary. Unless we rise up and jealously defend our right to elect members of the Supreme Court, one day soon Idaho’s courts will reflect the imperial attitude dominant in San Francisco.
Friday, May 25, 2007
Justice Trout Confirms Judicial Conspiracy
Yesterday morning, Idaho Justice Linda Copple Trout announced that she is going to resign her position on the high court this summer so that her successor can be appointed rather than elected by the people of Idaho:
The Idaho Statesman reports that Trout “is more comfortable having a committee screen possible successors for Gov. Otter than have voters try to pick her replacement.”
We’ve complained before about justices on the Idaho Supreme Court circumventing the Idaho Constitution in order to help ensure that it remains an institution formed in their image. But those complaints were based on speculation and a pile of suspicious resignations. Now Justice Trout confirms that there is, in fact, a conspiracy within the state’s judiciary to effectively ignore the Constitution. These elites have decided to simply amend the Constitution without so much as a public court opinion or legislative act.
I guess you have to credit Trout for coming clean – but it is clearly reprehensible that a little legal cabal centered in Boise has simply decided that voters will no longer be given the privilege of selecting justices for the high court. Once again, Liberals find the written Constitution, with its recognition of rights inhering in the People, to be a great annoyance.
A related story in the Twin Falls paper quotes former Speaker of the House Bruce Newcomb as supportive of Trout’s open defiance of the Idaho Constitution: “These elections anymore are so ugly”. That is not a big surprise. He is a long-standing friend of the justice, and once introduced a constitutional amendment to limit judicial elections to a Soviet-style choice: Under the Newcomb plan, we poor folk would be given the simple-minded choice of affirming candidates selected for us by our superiors. In the strange circumstance where a majority of Idahoans voted against a judicial candidate, the cabal would simply gather to select for us another of their liking.
Thankfully, Mr. Newcomb no longer runs the show in the Idaho House. It is time for the Legislature to begin a serious consideration of this whole matter. We are not simply talking about judicial selection or personalities. In this case, we are talking about the checks and balances of constitutional government, whereby the state’s Founding Fathers wisely sought to protect the public from an unaccountable judiciary.
Furthermore, the Legislature has a duty to protect the Constitution’s integrity, especially when it is being rewritten by a small group of self-interested lawyers. That process (or lack of process) cannot be allowed to stand.
Thursday, May 24, 2007
Planned Parenthood Sued by Ohio Teen
Evidence of Planned Parenthood’s policy-driven refusal to abide by state reporting laws continues to mount. Just this week the Life Legal Defense Foundation announced that it was filing a lawsuit against Planned Parenthood of Ohio for its failure to protect a girl being victimized by her father.
In filing the lawsuit, Dana Cody of the Foundation argued that Planned Parenthood is guilty of violating Ohio law:
“The girl’s father took her to Planned Parenthood for an abortion and birth control. Rather than report the under-aged pregnancy to law enforcement, Planned Parenthood went ahead with the abortion. And because of the birth control provided, the sexual abuse continued and was covered up.”
The complaint alleges that the sexual abuse continued for another year-and-a-half before a basketball coach reported her suspicions to law enforcement. The father was eventually tried and convicted of sexual assault.
Given the size and power of Planned Parenthood, it seems unlikely that any state government will be able to force it to comply with reporting requirements. Our best hope for change in their organizational defiance is through stiff financial sanctions imposed by juries in cases like this.
Tuesday, May 22, 2007
DC Pundits Openly Cheer for Pro-Abort GOP
A column appears in yesterday’s Congressional Quarterly – one of the more prestigious political journals out of the nation’s capital – predicting that the Republican Party is on the verge of abandoning its social conservative base. The columnist is Craig Crawford, and his piece is entitled, “GOP Makeover”.
His view is that this makeover is driven by the party’s recent losses in Congress: “Stung by the loss of Congress and dealing with a president in a tailspin, the Republican Party is now engaged in a bruising battle to loosen kits longstanding ties to social conservatism and reshape its image for mainstream voters.”
Such a statement, removed from historical and factual context, might reasonably make pro-Life activists, in particular, quite anxious for the future. (Let’s be honest here: When “smart” pundits like Crawford speak about ‘social conservatism’, they mean those of us who have the crazy notion that human babies in the womb are actually human babies in the womb).
However, this is just the sort of dribble which ascends from Washington media types on a regular basis.
Crawford points to the apparent rising ascendancy of candidates like Rudy Giuliani, who has sometimes proudly proclaimed his pro-abortion views. But what Crawford fails to wrestle with is a slew of recent polling data showing Rudy dropping in preference among Republican voters exactly because
of his abortion politics. Thus, he is a bit short of evidence that some sort of widespread revolt is underway.
But implicit in his piece – though he doesn’t have the guts to tackle the issue directly – is the notion that pro-Lifers are responsible for the Republican losses in Congress. And to the degree that his argument/analysis is founded upon this ridiculous belief, his position moves past wrong to the absurd.
Every polling report on the past three election cycles demonstrates that pro-Lifers have been crucial to Republican victories at the polls. Many published articles, including some written by Democrat operatives, concluded that it was Kerry’s pro-abort position which cost him the presidency. Aside from the moral questions involved, it would simply be practically insane for the Republican Party to abandon its pro-Life/pro-Family base.
Crawford’s piece is, therefore, nothing more than a cheerleading piece for his RINO friends around DuPont Circle. And despite his fervent hopes, there is simply no possibility that Rudy Giuliani will become the Republican nominee.
Monday, May 21, 2007
Planned Parenthood Defiance Continues
There has been a wealth of evidence developed over the years that Planned Parenthood systematically ignores various state laws designed to protect underage girls from sexual predators. Most states have laws requiring medical personnel and other professionals coming into information about possible sexual abuse of underage girls to report those suspicions to law enforcement.
Yet it appears that Planned Parenthood, as a matter of organizational policy, refuses to adhere to these legal requirements. Controversies have raged in California, Iowa and Kansas over the past several years. Yet the defiance continues.
The most exhaustive exposure of Planned Parenthood policies was conducted a few years ago by Life Dynamics
in Texas. They contacted Planned Parenthood offices in most states to test the procedures used to treat girls impregnated by older, adult men. Over and over they recorded counselors advising girls to lie about their age or the age of the man they were involved with. (We still have a few copies of this stunning report; call or email if you would like one
Planned Parenthood is under fire again. Earlier this month a college journalism student posed as a 15-year-old girl impregnated by her 23 year old boyfriend. The student, Lila Rose, secretly videotaped the counseling session and released the shocking results to the public.
In the video, a Planned Parenthood counselor is seen advising the girl to make certain she fills out her paperwork to indicate she is 16 – otherwise a report will have to be filed. The counselor goes on to say, “And I don’t know anything”.
It is more than ironic that the fruit of the feminist movement has been to leave girls virtually unprotected from predators. These supposed advocates for women rights have determined that victimized girls are just so much collateral damage in the war to protect abortion-on-demand. And they have apparently intimidated many elected officials and law enforcement personnel into silence.
After Planned Parenthood was exposed by Lila Rose’s video, did it issue a statement of apology? Did it try and spin its way out by calling for better training of its personnel? No. Rather than offer any expression of regret – the organization’s lawyers threatened to file a brutal lawsuit against the student journalist if she did not get her videotape off the web.
Planned Parenthood’s shameless defiance has been met with only silence from those California officials elected to protect our children. To our knowledge, not a single California law enforcement agent has called for a deeper investigation of Planned Parenthood policies. And don’t bet a nickel that you will anytime soon.
Thursday, May 17, 2007
A Faithful Servant Goes Home
The Rev. Jerry Falwell went home to be with the Lord this week, and his sudden departure gives us all time to reflect on the legacy he leaves his nation and fellow Christians.
One measure of that legacy is the size and vehemence of his enemies. There’s no point in attempting to make a thorough list; Falwell’s enemies include every element of the Left and much of the mainstream establishment. Planned Parenthood, the American Civil Liberties Union, nearly every elected Democrat and a bunch of powerful Republicans are quite relieved that he has left the scene.
The Washington Times, in reporting on Falwell’s passing, wrote that Falwell used his leadership skills to forge “an unprecedented electoral coalition”. That is not quite true. Falwell’s vision of the “Moral Majority” might seem political to many – but in reality, his message was directed more toward Christians than it was toward politicians.
Rev. Falwell reminded us that we had a duty to bring our values and faith into the public square in order to help build a more just and decent nation. The media would have you believe that he was some kind of weird momentary figure, because we have lost so much of our heritage.
At the nation’s founding, and through most of its history, the clergy regularly lectured congregants on the connections between the Gospel and public virtue. I recently acquired a volume entitled, Political Sermons of the American Founding Era
. It contains sermons by such clerical giants as John Wesley, Samuel Sherwood, John Mason and Samuel Miller. They cover such topics as, “Overcoming Evil With Good”, “The Dignity of Man”, “A Discourse on the Love of Our Country”, and “Scriptural Instructions to Civil Rulers”.
It would be more accurate to portray Rev. Falwell as a man who revived and renewed a proud tradition – one necessary to the nation’s prosperity, even its survival.
It was a responsibility he carried with dignity and humility.
I imagine that he has now received the highest honor a Christian could hope to receive: At heaven’s door, I believe he was greeted by the Lord with the great and terrible words, “Well done, thou good and faithful servant
Let us pray that the Lord raises up other leaders of Falwell’s integrity to join the battle.
Tuesday, May 15, 2007
National Poll Finds Pro-Life Majority
A national poll by CNN – not exactly a news source inclined to present positive news on any conservative issue – shows that a majority of Americans identify themselves as “pro-Life”.
A survey of 1028 adults earlier this month found that 50% identify as “pro-Life”, while 45% considered themselves more inclined to support abortion rights.
A poll conducted last summer in Idaho’s 1st Congressional District found that Idaho voters were more strongly pro-Life life than found in this CNN survey: 53% of Idahoans called themselves “pro-Life”, while only 40% considered themselves “pro-choice”. Even more significant is the fact that 44% of Idahoans described themselves as “strongly pro-Life” – versus just 22% willing to identify themselves as “strongly pro-choice”.
That huge practical advantage in intensity was also picked up in the CNN poll.
LifeNews.com reports that people who describe themselves as “pro-Life” in the CNN poll were twice as likely to say the issue was extremely important to them, compared to abortion rights supporters.
“Abortion rights opponents have intensity on their side,” CNN reported in its story on the poll. (That must have been a painful admission
Such polling data puts a real focus on the impending crisis facing conservatives as we quickly confront the beginning of the presidential selection process. The leading candidate to challenge abortion fan Hillary Clinton, Rudy Giuliani, is hostile to the basic values of the nation on a number of crucial social issues – especially abortion.
It will only be possible to defeat Clinton with a candidate who can mobilize the great majority of pro-Life voters.
Thursday, May 10, 2007
The Green, the Red and the Black
The intimate relationship between the environmental movement and the Abortion Industry seems so unnatural that many citizens may have never noticed the coordination. We should not continue making this mistake: On a host of levels and issues – these folks are partners.
A recent news article out of England clearly shows that the partnership between the Greens and the Abortion Industry is more than a matter of convenience. They are different aspects of the same dark evil. The laundry list of social and environmental problems they trot out for public consumption has the same horrible belief: Children are the problem.
John Guillebaud is co-chairman of a group called “Optimum Population Trust”. At a recent environmental summit held in London, Mr. Guillebaud (also a professor at University College London) presented a paper on solutions to global warming.
“The greatest thing anyone in Britain could do to help the future of the planet would be to have one less child”.
So there it is. To keep the planet green, we need to eliminate more children. Like many abortion advocates, the environmental movement is dominated by folks who believe that babies are a kind of parasite. Not only do they suck the life out of women (in Margaret Sanger’s words), now we learn they are responsible for destroying “Mother Earth”.
Abortion is now a weapon in the Left’s war to protect fish and penguins and caribou.
Monday, May 07, 2007
President Bush Continues to Defend America's Little Ones
When Democrats took over Congress, they had a big debt to pay: The Abortion Lobby spent millions of dollars and thousands of hours helping get them to the party. Within days, bills were introduced to expand tax funding of abortion and Planned Parenthood’s corporate empire. Dozens of abortion bills await congressional approval.
Their strategic initiative gained more energy following the Supreme Court’s ruling on partial birth abortions.
President Bush launched a counter-salvo last week. He wrote a letter to congressional leaders advising them that any legislation which might increase the number of abortions in this country will meet with a swift veto. In particular, Bush is concerned about attempts to increase the funding for international “family planning” grants – money which helps in part to fund coerced abortion programs in China and various underdeveloped nations.
“I will veto any legislation that weakens current federal policies and laws on abortion, or that encourages the destruction of human life at any stage,” Bush wrote in his letter.
We share the enthusiasm of Dr. James Dobson in congratulating the president for his leadership:
“President Bush is not the first man to occupy the Oval Office who talked about valuing human life, but no administration has backed up those words with as much consistent policy support as his has,” Dobson said in a press statement.
There are many conservatives around the nation who are concerned about various policies offered by President Bush. But the pro-Life movement has every reason to celebrate this president and his strong leadership.
Thank you Mr. President.
Thursday, May 03, 2007
STOPP Releases Data on Industry Giant Planned Parenthood
Did you know that Planned Parenthood opened its first abortion factory in 1970? 3 years before the Supreme Court gave birth to the feticide industry? In fact, according to STOPP, Planned Parenthood’s abortion facility was the first in the nation.
While the total number of abortions in America continues to decline slightly – Planned Parenthood reports that it committed more abortions in 2005 than any year in its history: 264,943 tiny Americans were killed in Planned Parenthood chambers. Its gain is a sign of its aggressive strategies to increase market share in the lucrative feticide industry.
But the surgical abortion numbers are only part of the story.
Planned Parenthood reports that it dispensed 261,969 doses of “Emergency Contraception” in 2005. (Also called the “Morning After Pill”). An unknown number of those doses resulted in death for a new human being.
In comparing the 2005 numbers with those from the previous year, STOPP noticed that Planned Parenthood reported it had conducted nearly 100,000 fewer breast cancer screenings between the two years, and over 5,000 fewer cases of prenatal care to expecting mothers and their babies.
STOPP is a project of the American Life League.
Tuesday, May 01, 2007
Archbishop Provides Righteous Model for Clergy
The Archbishop of St. Louis, Raymond Burke, has offered some strong and principled leadership to the Christian community – in contrast to some Idaho clergy.
In the past couple weeks, Archbishop Burke has resigned as Chairman of a charitable board in protest over their indirect association with the Abortion Industry. The clergyman served on the Cardinal Glennon Children’s Medical Center Board until the organization recruited singer Cheryl Crow to headline a fundraising event for its cancer center.
Burke said that the pro-abortion performer “promotes moral evils” – including abortion-on-demand, and embryonic stem cell research. Burke said he could not allow someone who “publicly espouses the mass destruction of human beings” to raise money for a Catholic hospital.
Burke had asked the foundation’s board to drop Crow from the event. But they refused. So he resigned, and urged Catholics to boycott the fundraising event.
“What if, for instance, there were someone appearing who we discovered was openly racist and who made statements and took actions to promote racism? Do you think that I would let that go on?” the Archbishop told members of the media.
Burke’s leadership stands in hard contrast to that offered by Meridian’s Father Ritchey. This pastor of one of Idaho’s largest Catholic parishes has recently banned advertising from Idaho Chooses Life in his parish bulletin. We have written the priest to get an explanation – but after a month of silence, it seems likely he doesn’t feel like offering one. Rumors abound that Ritchey’s motive involves a wealthy parishioner who is offended by some of our literature; specifically, our “Guide to Pro-Life Doctors”.
Apparently there is a parishioner at Holy Apostles who is offended by our identification of him as doctor “cooperating” with the Abortion Industry because he is part of a practice that refers women and girls to Planned Parenthood for abortions. One gathers that it is easier for Fr. Ritchey to silence the message, to attack the messenger, than it is to provide sound spiritual direction to a parishioner providing professional, financial and moral support to the nation’s largest abortion provider.
But the righteous example of Archbishop Burke is not limited to the Sheryl Crow scandal.
He has also written a public letter to members of his faith, urging them to avoid giving money to the Susan G. Komen Foundation because of its support of Planned Parenthood.
His letter said that the archdiocese could not support the charity because it gives money to Planned Parenthood, supports embryonic stem cell research and publicly disputes the link between abortion and breast cancer.
We pray that Archbishop Burke’s courage and faithfulness to the Gospel will inspire America’s clergy to a greater commitment as we battle the Culture of Death.
Subscribe to Idaho Chooses Life commentaries.
Add this RSS feed to your Outlook or Outlook Express.
Get Idaho Chooses Life Posts on your cell phone.