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Peace & Life Connections #302
March 18, 2016


Where U.S. Supreme Court Nominee Merrick Garland Stands
 
        President Obama has nominated Merrick Garland to the U.S. Supreme Court. This position can have a huge and crucial impact on our issues -- of interest internationally as well as within the U.S. Initial on-line research on the record of rulings of this D.C. Circuit judge shows:
 
302 GarlandAbortion: No public position yet known; the issue isn’t covered much in his circuit. He did clerk for Justice William Brennan, a driving force behind Roe v. Wade.
 
Death Penalty: He’s had no rulings because it hasn’t come up in his circuit. As a prosecutor, he was active in the Oklahoma City bombing prosecution which did lead to an execution.
 
Euthanasia / Assisted Suicide: No public position yet known, and unlike abortion and the death penalty, this isn’t mentioned in discussions of “hot-button” issues.
 
War:
 
Unhelpful: He accepted Bush’s policy of detaining people at Guantanamo Bay; abusing them wasn’t covered under rule of law. The Supreme Court overturned the ruling, which was based on the precedent at the time.
 
Helpful: He dissented in a case about prisoners at Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq, saying they had been abused and had right to redress by suing contractors involved. Also, in 2013, he wrote the appeals court's decision ordering the CIA to release information about drone strikes.

        We recently gave our own position on filling this vacancy, with an authoritative quotation from one of the original US Supreme Court Justices in 1791. 
 
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The Depressing U.S. Presidential Race
 
          Long-time CL friend Mary Meehan has a marvelous blog posting called "Are They Running for President – or Grim Reaper?" She details the problems with all the major U.S. presidential candidates in terms of which kind of killing they support.
 
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Mention in America Magazine
 
        Long-time CL friend Sidney Callahan, responding to the New York Times coverage we discussed last week, has an article mentioning us (along with some member groups) in a March 14 article in America magazine, Hopes for Pro-life Feminism. She writes: “Since 1973 activists groups have adopted and developed Cardinal Joseph Bernadin’s argument for a ‘seamless garment’ approach to life issue. This includes capital punishment, unjust war, abortion, euthanasia and poverty as abuses against justice. Currently, the group Consistent Life has coordinated and taken up these interrelated causes. Consistent Lifers work for nonviolent nonlethal alternatives to abortion, euthanasia, capital punishment and war.”
 
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Record-Breaking March for Life in Peru
 
        Peruvian law protects unborn children, and efforts to dislodge those laws help account for why the support for life was so huge.
 
302 Marcha 3
 
Photo from Twitter. Message translated from Spanish:
The March for Life 2016 has been a total pro-life success:
750,000 persons and #TrendingTopic in half the world.
 
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Quotation of the Week
Pope Francis
September 20, 2013 address to gynecologists
 
        In all its phases and at every age, human life is always sacred and always of quality. And not as a matter of faith, but of reason and science! . . . Openness to life is at the center of true development. If personal and social sensitivity in welcoming a new life is lost, other forms of welcome useful to social life will dry up. Welcoming life tempers moral energies and makes people capable of helping each other.
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