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Peace & Life Connections #179
September 27, 2013


CL-sponsored Conference Next Month
 
        Consistent Life is co-sponsoring the Vita et Veritas conference at Yale University on October 18 & 19,  2013. The first gathering of its kind at Yale, Vita et Veritas “aims to make the pro-life vision intelligible on college campuses.” Our friends at Life Matters Journal are also co-sponsors and the speaker line-up includes Life Matters Executive Editor Aimee Murphy; Kelsey Hazzard, the President of CL member group Secular Pro-Life; our friend Mary Meehan of Meehan Reports on Life Issues; and Sally Winn, the Vice President of CL member group Feminists for Life.
        Those interested in attending are encouraged to register by October 1. Attendance costs only $20.
 
Vita et Veritas
 
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Techniques across Issues: Local Legislation
 
       The United States is set up for a certain amount of autonomy in its state legislatures, and arguments and referendums over abortion, euthanasia, and the death penalty are currently all focused there rather than the federal level. Usually, that’s reversed for war policy, since obviously the states don’t make war on their own. But there is an important aspect of war the states can impact: the war economy relies on individual production facilities. Mainly, states want those facilities for their jobs – but the overall economy suffers when money is taken out for military spending rather than other needs. The good news is that the state of Connecticut has actually passed a bill, which the governor signed, setting up a commission for converting the military industries of the state to civilian and environmentally sustainable industries.
 
Dove Vote
          
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Problems across Issues: Over-simplified Thinking
 
        An over-simplified view, especially with dividing people into heroes and villains, us vs. them, has been on display this last week.
        A diplomatic, relatively nonviolent approach to Syria has many nuances; simply "punishing" a dictator isn’t one of them. Accordingly, several pundits and politicians have reacted to good news as if it were bad news. They want that punishment, not taking into account who else would be hurt and killed.
        And when Pope Francis said that love is foundational, rules are not, the media interpreted the remark through an over-simplified lens, and NARAL put on their Facebook page: “Thank you. Signed, pro-choice women everywhere.” But avoiding doctrinal rigidities in favor of love isn’t support for abortion availability, as the pope showed by lovingly defending the child “unjustly condemned to be aborted” the following day (September 20).
 
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Quotations of the Week
 
Two on this week’s news events:
 
Robert Christian, Washington Post, September 23, 2013

        For pro-life activists, was Pope Francis’ interview disappointing? Not for those of us who believe the protection of life requires more than opposition to legal abortion. To really stand for life means opposing the direct and indirect threats to life posed by inadequate healthcare, poverty, mass atrocities, euthanasia, lack of access to clean water, and countless other injustices, in addition to abortion. And opposition to abortion itself means providing support to families, pregnant women, and children, not simply supporting laws that restrict access to abortion.
 

Emily Thornberry, British Member of Parliament and Labour shadow attorney general
Letter to the director of public prosecutions, September, 2013

        I am writing to request that you carry out an urgent review of the decision by the Crown Prosecution Service [CPS] not to prosecute two doctors for attempting to arrange gender-selective abortions.  . . . The CPS under your directorship has made tackling violence against women and girls a priority. Such progress as has been made in this area will be completely undermined if the agency is seen to wash its hands of alleged abortion on the grounds of gender selection.
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