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Annabelle Rutledge

The Radical Normality of the Pro-Life View

By | Blog, Defense of Family, News and Events, Sanctity of Life | No Comments

The world is shocked by the European Court of Human Rights decision to remove 10-month-old Charlie Gard from life support against the wishes of his parents. After his doctors said there was nothing more they could do for him, Chris Gard and Connie Yates, Charlie’s parents, raised 1.6 million dollars to move Charlie from London to the United States to pursue another treatment. Charlie has a rare genetic disorder that resulted in brain damage, and while the treatment they were pursuing was experimental, it was their last option in the fight for their son’s precious life.

But the doctors at Great Ormond Street Hospital said, “No.” The High Court said, “No.” The Supreme Court said, “No.” The European Court of Human Rights said, “No.” The decision was final; Charlie Gard must die, because there is more “dignity” in removing him from life support than pursuing treatment. Death has become more dignified than life. And so the world is shocked.

I am not shocked. I am heartbroken and angry, but I am not surprised. The value of life begs for consistency. The moment it became acceptable to toss aside one human life, life everywhere became less valuable. For 50 years in England and 44 years in the United States, abortion has been legal. Throughout the decades that have followed, abortion has become morally acceptable. As it became acceptable for doctors to kill unborn children, absolute moral insensitivity followed.

At first there was the argument that the fetus was not a person. It served as a moral remedy for a time, but the majority of people today agree that this notion is now baseless. Science has shown us the heartbeats of children in the womb and their response to pain. We know they are human.

There is no excuse anymore, and there has not been such an excuse for a long time. But abortions have continued, in spite of the knowledge that the heartbeat on an ultrasound is not unlike the one that beats inside of you and me.

Following the legalization of abortion in the western world, the last several decades have witnessed so-called ethicists arguing for “after-birth abortions” or infanticide, the killing of infants after they are born. “Death with dignity” — euthanasia laws — have been passed throughout Europe and various states in the U.S. Peter Singer, the well-known moral philosopher and Professor of Bioethics at Princeton University, wrote, “[T]he notion that human life is sacred just because it is human life is medieval.”

Abortion has put us on a slippery slope headed towards moral bankruptcy. Americans have cried out against the European courts for ruling against Charlie’s parents, for ruling against the fight for Charlie’s life. But America? We are headed down that same slope. We are on our way, unless we choose to be exceptional in our regard for all human life. Pope John Paul II said these words to America in 1987, and they are just as apropos today.

“America the beautiful! So you sing in one of your national songs. Yes, America, you are beautiful indeed, and blessed in so many ways … But your greatest beauty and your richest blessing is found in the human person: in each man, woman, and child …

“For this reason, America, your deepest identity and truest character as a nation is revealed in the position you take towards the human person. The ultimate test of your greatness in the way you treat every human being, but especially the weakest and most defenseless ones.

“The best traditions of your land presume respect for those who cannot defend themselves. If you want equal justice for all, and true freedom and lasting peace, then, America, defend life! All the great causes that are yours today will have meaning only to the extent that you guarantee the right to life and protect the human person …”

There are many takeaways for the United States from the story of Charlie Gard, including the implications of state-run health care and parental rights. But the most prominent and the most vital to our success as a nation is a deep respect and genuine care for the intrinsic value of all human life. The idea that life is to be fought for, fiercely, until the very end should not be radical, it should be expected.

 

Annabelle Rutledge serves as Communications Coordinator for Concerned Women for America.

SCOTUS Issues Decisive Win for Religious Liberty

By | Blog, Missouri, News and Events, Press Releases, Religious Liberty | No Comments

Media StatementWashington, D.C. — The U.S. Supreme Court just issued their opinion on Trinity Lutheran v. Comer, the most important religious liberty case of the term. In a 7 to 2 decision, the Court declared unconstitutional the state of Missouri’s discrimination of a learning center because of their religious beliefs.

Penny Nance, CEO & President of Concerned Women for America (CWA), had this to say:

“Today is a great day for religious liberty.  Everyone wins. As we said at Concerned Women for America’s rally in the front of the Supreme Court on the day of oral arguments, every mom knows that a scraped knee hurts the same at whatever school your child attends – religious or not.

“The Supreme Court has always made clear that the First Amendment in no way requires the state’s hostility towards religion, and, in this case, Missouri’s own attorney admitted they were being overly cautious by discriminating against this school.  They admitted they would not violate the constitution by giving the money to them.

“Religious institutions, like schools, hospitals, and shelters, should be encouraged in their benevolent work.  Our society has benefited from their selfless commitment to help communities since our country’s founding, and the insistence of some in our society that we push them out of the public square because their love of neighbor comes from their love of God is ridiculous.

“The hundreds of thousands of members of Concerned Women for America applaud the justices, and we hope and pray this opinion signifies the beginning of a trend towards a loosening of the constraints on liberty they’ve unwisely (and unconstitutionally) imposed on us for decades.”

For an interview with Penny Nance contact Annabelle Rutledge at arutledge@cwfa.org or 916-792-3973.