Stith quoted in March for Life article

UFL member Richard Stith was quoted in an article by Terry Mattingly of GetReligion about the March for Life called “Define ‘hundreds,’ please: New York Times does epic job of dissin’ March For Life.”

Among those in the crowd was Richard Stith, 71, an Indiana law professor who called himself a part of a segment he dubbed “lefties for life” – people who he said view abortion opposition as part of a broader “consistent ethic for life.” In that, he said, is an opposition to the death penalty and any violence against LGBT people. He said he had been a member of a group called Socialists for Life as well and always felt welcome at the march.


US Supreme Court refuses to review decision invalidating North Dakota’s heartbeat law

On Monday January 25, 2016, the US Supreme refused to review the 8th Circuit’s decision invalidating North Dakota’s heartbeat law. (MKB Mgmt. Corp. v. Stenehjem, 795 F. 3d 768 (8th Cir. 2015).) The North Dakota law banned abortions when the unborn child has a detectable heartbeat. The Eighth Circuit considered itself bound by the Supreme Court’s decisions in Roe v. Wade and Planned Parenthood v. Casey.

The 8th Circuit did note, however, that “good reasons exist for the Court to evaluate its jurisprudence.” Among other reasons, the lower court noted that the Supreme Court’s case law “discounts the legislative branch’s recognized interest in protecting unborn children.”

At this time, the Court doesn’t appear interested in considering cases that attack Roe/Casey directly.

21 Questions for Janet Smith

There is an excellent interview with UFL member Janet E. Smith by Sean Salai, S.J. in America Magazine, “Bioethics and the Catholic Church: 21 Questions for Janet E. Smith.”

New poll shows Americans are increasingly pro-life

On the anniversary of Roe v. Wade and of the annual March for Life, I thought it fitting to post this recent story about increasing support for the pro-life position.

US Supreme Court refuses to hear case involving Arkansas’s Heartbeat Law

Here is a link to a LifeNews story on the Supreme Court’s January 19, 2016 refusal to review a federal court of appeals decision holding unconstitutional the Arkansas Human Heartbeat Protection Act. The Arkansas law required abortionists to perform tests to determine whether the unborn child’s heart was beating and also prohibited abortions if a heartbeat was detected and if the fetus is 12 weeks or greater gestation.

The federal court of appeals decision (Edwards v. Beck, 786 F. 3d 1113 (8th Cir. 2015)) that the Court refused to review was notable because the judges, who considered themselves bound by Supreme Court precedent, explained the problems with the Supreme Court’s viability standard. The lower court further noted that the issues involved were better suited for the  legislative, not the judicial, process.

The Arkansas law was a direct challenge to Roe and Casey, which effectively prevent states from prohibiting abortions at any point during pregnancy.

Planned Parenthood’s annual report

Here is a report by Kelsey Harkness of the Daily Signal, “12 Key Numbers From Planned Parenthood’s New Annual Report,” on Planned Parenthood’s 2015 annual report. It shows a decline in overall services and profits and an increase in the percentage of revenue from government sources. HT Prolife Center at the University of St. Thomas (MN).