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Peace & Life Connections #122 - August 10, 2012

Summer Action Social Institute
A122 Stiller        CL Board member Lisa Stiller (pictured) attended the Summer Action Social Institute in Louisville, which focused this year especially on human trafficking and poverty. She helped spread the word about Consistent Life with material including our Catholic Social Teaching pamphlet, which goes over especially well at Catholic events like this one. She reports everything got taken, so there’s clearly a hunger for our message. She passed around our group member list and two people wanted to know why THEIR parish or diocese wasn't on the list. (We are, of course still delighted to add member groups!)
        She reports that there was a good roundtable discussion on civil discourse when discussing life issues. There is unfortunately some tension between social justice and anti-abortion work, which we hope we can help ease by showing how the issues involved are all connected.
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American Psychological Association Convention 2012
A122 APA        The APA always has plenty of material on war, racism, and poverty. This year, there was nothing on the death penalty, previous moves to have therapists involved in “hastened death” (euthanasia) have apparently subsided for the time being, and the only presentation on abortion came from CL’s own research arm. Rachel M. MacNair, Ph.D. (pictured) presented a poster entitled “Research Needs on Abortion from a Peace Psychology Perspective.” It actually aroused quite a bit of interest, with several attendees taking the full paper.
        This paper offered suggestions on how to study several questions: What kind of aftermath do abortions have for women who have them? What does it do to women as a whole in terms of equality, discrimination, pressure for sex, and pressure to abort? What does abortion availability do to living children in terms of child abuse, or the development of children for whom abortion was requested but denied? What about male partners and other family members, or abortion staff?
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Newspaper Letter to Editor
We encourage readers to send in for sharing letters they’ve had published that put consistent-life points well: Below comes from Paul Kopp in the Sunday 8/5/12 Cleveland Plain Dealer:
        “In President Barack Obama's campaign ad on abortion ("Ad misrepresents Romney position," July 30), a woman states, ‘I've never felt this way before, but it's a scary time to be a woman . . . We need to attack our problems, not a woman's choice.’
        I agree that we need to attack our problems, but in a constructive manner that looks at the prospective mother and child as partners, not a destructive manner that casts them as enemies. If a pregnant woman is so desperate that she sees the death of her own child as a possible option, then our society is truly regressive rather than progressive, rooted in a horrific social injustice.
        How can an act of despair be referred to as a ‘choice’? Women can choose to sacrifice their life plans and dreams, or they can undergo a humiliating, invasive operation and have their own child die. It's a lousy choice that women should not be forced to make.”
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Quotation of the Week
"A New Ethic for Medicine and Society," California Medicine 113. September, 1970, p. 68.
        “Medicine's role with respect to changing attitudes toward abortion may well be a prototype of what is to occur. . . . One may anticipate further development of these roles as the problems of birth control and birth selection are extended inevitably to death selection and death control.”
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