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Peace & Life Connections #34 - November 5, 2010


U.S. Elections

        The death penalty and euthanasia are not commonly issues in major campaigns and weren’t this year; war should have been, but those fighting and their families have been marginalized. Abortion came up rarely, with the few candidates making pro-Roe assertions not faring well.

        Of the five pro-life Democrats that voted against funding the war in Afghanistan, three won handily (Jerry Costello, Michael Doyle, and Marcy Kaptur). James Oberstar lost by one point (48-47%). Bart Stupak wasn’t running and was replaced with a Republican. Of the five pro-life Republicans who voted against the war twice, all won with good large margins; of the seven who voted against funding the war only on a later vote, five won easily and the other two weren’t running.

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Signs of the Times

        The October 30 “Rally to Restore Sanity and/or Fear” (between the U.S. Congress and Washington Monument) did a lot of satire about “taking it down a notch for America” with signs saying things like “I disagree with you, but I’m pretty sure you’re not Hitler” and “This sign is not large enough for a serious discussion.” The scribbled consistent-life sign below was therefore right in the spirit of the rally, and is number 447 in the Huffington Post rally-sign slideshow, entitled “Consistent Life at Rally.” It’s held by Elisabeth Allen, an 18-year-old recent home-school graduate (heading to college in the spring) who came up with family from Thomson (near Augusta) Georgia. She reports that people were warm and welcoming to her message, and many stopped to talk and many took photos.


sign reads:

We’re for Consistent Life

(that’s pro-life but not just for babies)

If you disagree we will still like you

and we will not call you ugly names

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 Important Election of Yesteryear 

vote        It was another November 2 exactly 90 years ago that women first voted, and CL Board member Carol Crossed had an article published about it in the Democrat and Chronicle of Rochester, New York. Unfortunately, they left out an important part about the suffragists, but we’ll fill it in: “They exercised their greatest skill in combating the perception put forth by their opponents that they would abandon their children.  Nowhere was this made more apparent than in their opposition to ‘Restellism,’ the term given to abortion, the most heinous form of child abandonment.  It was named after the infamous abortionist Madame Restell, frequently arrested and commented on in Susan B Anthony’s publication of her newspaper, The Revolution.  Suffrage leaders saw opposition to ‘child murder’ and ‘infanticide’ as an opportunity to clear their name of unfair accusations against them by anti-vice squads, who saw the decadence of the Victorian Era lay at women’s independence.”

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 Quotation of the Week

George Monbiot, “The Values of Everything” The Guardian, October 12, 2010
He’s not actually discussing the consistent life ethic, but we think the point applies.

      “We must shed old thinking and stand up for those who believe there is more to life than the bottom line. But there’s a paradox here, which means that we cannot rely on politicians to drive these changes. Those who succeed in politics are, by definition, people who prioritise extrinsic values. Their ambition must supplant peace of mind, family life, friendship - even brotherly love. So we must lead this shift ourselves. People with strong intrinsic values must cease to be embarrassed by them. We should argue for the policies we want not on the grounds of expediency but on the grounds that they are empathetic and kind; and against others on the grounds that they are selfish and cruel. In asserting our values we become the change we want to see.”

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