When an unborn child is “offensive”: Taking back the language on life

When an unborn child is “offensive”: Taking back the language on life

As we work to protect every person’s God-given right to life, we see two truths proven time and again: 1) Anti-lifers will stop at almost nothing to protect the abortion industry’s tax-funded cash flow, and 2) the first step to victory is taking back control of the language. For proof, look no further than the Iowa Statehouse.

In the first-in-the nation caucus state, we have a Republican-led House and a Republican (and self-titled “pro-life”) governor. Yet, being one of the few states not to capitalize on the GOP wave in 2014, the Democrats still control the Senate, and that means any pro-life legislation has a snowball’s chance in a really hot place of ever passing. But that does not mean there’s no way to advance our principles and move the ball down the field.

We learned mere weeks ago that the only “pro-life” bill that had a chance at making it to the floor during this session was HF 58, authored by Rep. Walt Rogers. It was an effort to require that a pregnant woman considering abortion be shown an ultrasound of her pre-born baby.

However, the bill’s language had plenty of flaws, not the least of which was the opening sentence, “This bill requires that prior to performing an abortion…” and referred to the endangered child as a “fetus.”  A classic “and then you can kill the baby” bill.

But could it possibly be used to make a point? Again, it’s almost certainly never coming up for debate in the Iowa Senate, let alone passing. So why not  seize this opportunity to begin to take back the language?

After all,  we are the ones fighting for the lives of the innocent and most helpless…so why are we perpetually on the defensive? The opposition is proudly pro-killing; anytime & anywhere–and they want you and me to pay for it! Yet they are always on the offensive, shamelessly trotting out the same tired bumper-sticker talking points about wars on women and how male politicians are interfering with women’s rights by refusing to accept infanticide as “health care.”

And here was an opportunity to gain a little ground. Rep. Greg Heartsill introduced an amendment to the bill’s language, to include the term “the unborn child.” This makes it clear: we’re talking about killing our own children. A simple change, but it was powerful enough to make the GOP leadership nervous; there were even fears among the Republican majority that their own leaders wouldn’t support a bill that called an unborn child an…unborn child.

It certainly made the Democrats pull out all the stops to combat it.

How ridiculous is the anti-life faction willing to become to protect state-funded child-killing?

Yesterday, the aforementioned bill (now HF573) made it to the floor for debate…including around 35 amendments. The pro-killing side threw everything they could at this bill. From repeated name calling (Rep. Wessel-Kroeschell-D labeling it “nonsensical” & “senseless”) to trying to change the entire meaning of the bill (from addressing Ebola vaccines, to legalizing medical marijuana, to this treasure: the “Pre-Vasectomy Scrotal Ultrasound Amendment”… not making that up).

Then came the push for “exceptions” (yes, even in an incremental bill that’s largely symbolic, they have to label certain innocent children as unworthy of life). The most intense part of the debate took place when Rep. Mascher (D) made an impassioned and very frank speech about why the common exceptions of rape, incest, and health of the mother must be added (much to the chagrin of the teachers that brought their 5th grade class into the gallery about that time to observe).

At that point, GOP Rep. Joel Fry moved to strike the “rape & incest” verbiage entirely, and change the giant loophole of “health of the mother” to “…health emergency that would lead to the death of the mother.”  That wasn’t “exception” enough for the other side, and they attempted a procedural move of splitting the amendment.

The GOP immediately went into a lengthy caucus, to avoid being outmaneuvered. This was the moment of truth; would the leadership team that almost held up this legislation over Heartsill’s addition of “unborn child” be willing to stand firm against these “exceptions”? Or would they cave (as they have in the past)?

Friends, amazing things can happen when a few brave people stand boldly for the truth (and when all eyes are watching): the House GOP Leadership actually held the line, voting to exclude the proposed “exceptions” and to keep Heartsill’s wording.

Finally, 5 hours, 3 caucus breaks, and 34 failed amendments later, the vote was held; the bill passed, 57-39.

Is this a perfect bill? By no means.

Were the minor changes in language worth all the effort? We think so.

A state Representative (Heartsill) showed the courage to stand up, not only to the opposition party, but even to some of his own party’s leaders, just by clearly stating a fact: we’re talking about real people, real children’s lives. That message matters– because it’s key to winning the debate, and winning the culture.

And for more than 5 hours, state legislators were forced to go on the record, to openly vote for, or against, protecting “unborn children.” A simple truth, plainly spoken, helped to reaffirm who we’re really fighting for, and who’s willing to stand up for our most basic right. Yes, the fight continues, but in this particular skirmish, we gained an important little foothold to start advancing toward victory.
Originally posted at http://stevedeace.com/news/when-an-unborn-child-is-offensive-taking-back-the-language-on-life/

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