The evolution of principle 4


By Tom Quiner

What is a principle?

It is an essential truth upon which other truths are based.

Former U.S. Senator and Vice President of the United States, Al Gore, embraced a principle that human life begins at conception. He was clear and unequivocal:

Al Gore

“It is my deep personal conviction that abortion is wrong. I hope that some day we will see the current outrageously large number of abortions drop sharply.”

In 1987, he wrote to a constituent the following:

“During my 11 years in congress, I have consistently opposed federal funding for abortions. In my opinion, it is wrong to spend federal funds for what is arguably taking of a human life. Let me assure you that I share your belief that innocent human life must be protected, and I am committed to furthering this goal.”

Al Gore’s essential truth was clear: abortion kills a human being.

The late Senator Edward Kennedy was even more eloquent in his defense of human life at its earliest stages:

“While the deep concern of a woman bearing an unwanted child merits consideration and sympathy, it is

Edward Kennedy

my personal feeling that the legalization of abortion on demand is not in accordance with the value which our civilization places on human life. Wanted or unwanted, I believe that human life, even at its earliest stages, has certain rights which must be recognized — the right to be born, the right to love, the right to grow old.”

What separates man from the animals? It is the ability to love. Senator Kennedy recognized that man is made in God’s image. What is God? Why God is an eternal exchange of love, says Pope Benedict XVI. Ted Kennedy acknowledged the right to life on the basis that every human being, from her or his conception, has the right to love. After all, God IS love.

Mr. Kennedy’s support for the rights of the preborn was grounded in the longstanding tradition of American liberalism to watch out for the little guy, as powerfully confirmed with these words of compassion:

“I share the confidence of those who feel that America is working to care for its unwanted as well as wanted children, protecting particularly those who cannot protect themselves. I also share the opinions of those who do not accept abortion as a response to our society’s problems — an inadequate welfare system, unsatisfactory job training programs, and insufficient financial support for all its citizens. When history looks back to this era it should recognize this generation as one which cared about human beings enough to halt the practice of war, to provide a decent living for every family and to fulfill its responsibility to its children from the very moment of conception.”

Mssrs. Gore and Kennedy were joined in their commitment to life by other stalwarts of the Democratic Party.

Former Congressman and presidential candidate, Richard Gephardt, was crystal clear in his support of the principle that human life begins at conception in these words from 1984:

Dick Gephardt

“Life is the division of human cells, a process that begins with conception…. The [Supreme Court’s abortion] ruling was unjust, and it is incumbent on the Congress to correct the injustice. I have always been supportive of pro-life legislation. I intend to remain steadfast on this issue…. I believe that the life of the unborn should be protected at all costs.”

The Reverend Jesse Jackson, a man of God and former Democratic candidate for president, compared abortion to slavery:

“There are those who argue that the right to privacy is of [a] higher order than the right to life … that was the premise of slavery. You could not protest the existence or treatment of slaves on the plantation because that was private and therefore outside your right to be concerned.”

Mr. Jackson’s point is compelling. With soaring rhetoric, he extrapolated that unchecked abortion rights could create a “hell right here on earth” …

“What happens to the mind of a person, and the moral fabric of a nation, that accepts the aborting of the

Jesse Jackson

life of a baby without a pang of conscience? What kind of a person and what kind of a society will we have 20 years hence if life can be taken so casually? It is that question, the question of our attitude, our value system, and our mind-set with regard to the nature and worth of life itself that is the central question confronting mankind. Failure to answer that question affirmatively may leave us with a hell right here on earth.”

Even former President Bill Clinton, voiced his opposition to abortion in these remarks in 1986 when he was Governor of Arkansas:

Bill Clinton

“I am opposed to abortion and to government funding of abortions. We should not spend state funds on abortions because so many people believe abortion is wrong.”

Mr. Clinton’s remarks were revealing, though. You’ll notice that he wasn’t opposed to abortion based on an essential truth. Rather, he opposed it because enough voters thought it was wrong.

Mr. Clinton revealed the true principle of his party. They weren’t truly concerned with the little guy. They were concerned about votes. They wanted power. They had their finger in the air to see which way the wind was blowing, and when it shifted direction, they abandoned their essential truth and embraced another. And so each of the men quoted above not only changed their mind on this subject, they became vocal supporters of unfettered abortion rights.

This wasn’t a little issue like, say, the minimum wage. This was a life and death issue. And one by one, the party of the little guy abandoned their essential principle to win votes from a powerful and growing constituency, liberal, anti life feminists.

For years, Democrats tried to straddle this issue in their Platform by calling for abortions to be “safe, legal, and rare.” But by 2008 and the arrival of Barack Obama, they dropped the charade. Their Platform, which expresses their current essential truths, is clear:

“The Democratic Party strongly and unequivocally supports Roe v. Wade and a woman’s right to choose a safe and legal abortion, regardless of ability to pay, and we oppose any and all efforts to weaken or undermine that right.”

Not only do they view abortion as a fundamental right, they have set the stage for taxpayers to fund their newest essential truth, regardless of the religious sensibilities of the electorate.

The Democratic Party now says that the essential truth they so fervently embraced yesterday was wrong, that they have discovered a new essential truth in abortion.

Who knows what they will believe in tomorrow? Anything is possible for a party that believes Truth is fluid.

In the meantime, 54 million Americans are dead because of their abandonment of their principle and hell has come to earth.

Why Reduce the Number of Abortions? Reply


As seen in the Des Moines Register on October 4th, 2009

By Tom Quiner

“The president explicitly expressed his commitment to reducing the numbers of abortions and to listen to the church’s concern on moral issues.”

This is the news release much of the media missed on July 16th after President Obama met with Pope Benedict.

Think about this statement. It is relevant today, October 4th, 2009.  This is Life Chain Sunday across America.  In Des Moines, you’ll see members of your community standing along Merle Hay Road in respectful support of life.

I once believed there were only two positions on abortion: one believing the object in a mother’s womb is a person; the other believing it isn’t.  It follows that group one believes the unborn are entitled to human rights, group two doesn’t.

I was mistaken.  There is a third group, the one President Obama and much of his party are in.  This group tacitly acknowledges that the object in the womb is a person, but is unwilling to grant it human rights.  Why else should we reduce the number of abortions?

If the fetus is simply a collection of cells, much like a gall bladder, why did the President feel a need to reduce the number of abortions?

Scientists are universal in their assertion that life begins at conception, at which time its genetic code is complete.

In defense of my pro-choice friends, it is fair to ask:  “is the life in the womb really a person?” In other words, is it a “full” human entitled to full human rights?  Or is it, in fact, some sort of subhuman not entitled to human rights?

The implications are enormous.  The President’s party prides itself on looking out for the little guy.  If they’re wrong, they have abetted violence on an unimaginable scale directed at the most vulnerable persons in society, the unborn.

To my pro-choice friends, what if you’re wrong?  What if there is only a one-in-ten chance that we’re dealing with a human person in the womb?  Is the risk to our humanity worth it?

Some of you tell me you’re personally opposed to abortion, but that you can’t impose your view on someone else.  I don’t think you’re shooting straight with yourself.  Are you personally opposed to killing a baby with colic that cries all night?  Of course you are.  Are you willing to impose this view on the parent up all night with the crying kid?  Of course you are.   We impose values on others all the time. That’s why we pass laws:  to protect us from each other.

I know this is a tough issue.  None expressed the dilemma more eloquently than a famous Senator: “While the deep concern of a woman  bearing an unwanted child merits consideration and sympathy, it is my personal feeling that the legalization of abortion-on-demand is not in accordance with the values our civilization places on human life.  Wanted or unwanted,  I believe that human life even at its earliest stages has certain rights which must be recognized.  The right to be born; the right to love; the right to grow old.”

Ted Kennedy said it so well.  Yes, that was the late Senator Kennedy’s beautiful defense of life in 1971.  Then he changed his position.  He didn’t change this core position for scientific reasons or moral ones.  It came down to politics.

Today, on these pages in the Register, notable Republicans suggest that we, too, should be less concerned about this issue.  I think not.  If anything, Republicans should stand up for the little guy more than ever.

Either all humans possess personhood or they don’t. In America, all are created equal. Today’s Life Chain simply recognizes that whether embryonic, fetal, infantile, young, old, or dying, we’re entitled to human rights.  This is an American value.  Join us on Merle Hay Road at 2 PM today.

Promote humanity 1


By Tom Quiner

Abortion dehumanizes society.

Pornography dehumanizes society.

Increasingly, even political discourse is dehumanizing, vicious, and divisive.  It seems to me that the march of civilization should be in the direction of doing and saying things that make this world a more humane place.

Our march is slow.

Is Ann Coulter really advancing the cause of a humane world with rhetoric like this: “My only regret with Timothy McVeigh is he did not go to The New York Times building.”  I agree with Ms. Coulter on most political issues.  I’m concerned that her style, her rhetoric does more harm than good.

Did liberals advance the cause of a humane world with signs at Bush rallies that said:  “Save Mother Earth, kill Bush.”

The time has come for civil discourse

Did the late Senator Edward Kennedy advance the cause of a humane world with his speech condemning Supreme Court nominee, Robert Bork, with these words: “Robert Bork’s America is a land in which women would be forced into back-alley abortions, blacks would sit at segregated lunch counters, rogue police could break down citizens’ doors in midnight raids, schoolchildren could not be taught about evolution, writers and artists could be censored at the whim of the Government, and the doors of the Federal courts would be shut on the fingers of millions of citizens for whom the judiciary is—and is often the only—protector of the individual rights that are the heart of our democracy… President Reagan is still our president. But he should not be able to reach out from the muck of Irangate, reach into the muck of Watergate and impose his reactionary vision of the Constitution on the Supreme Court and the next generation of Americans. No justice would be better than this injustice.”

The answer in each of these cases is no.  Senator Kennedy’s rhetorical excesses, in particular, have poisoned judicial confirmation hearings to this very day.

I know ugliness and profanity are hip these days.  But intelligence is so much more interesting and effective.

Conservatives like me sometimes get fed up with liberals spouting what we feel are incoherent views.  And yet I know people with whom I disagree politically who are in the trenches helping people who need help.  I appreciate that.  I commend them.

Liberals are fond of saying that conservatives don’t care about people.  And yet I know conservatives in the trenches helping people who need help.  They’re not looking for attention, they’re just helping.  I appreciate that.  I commend them.

Abortion and pornography are two obvious dehumanizing poisons to our culture.  But so is our political discourse.

That doesn’t mean we can’t disagree.  It’s all in how we disagree.  When we disagree, let’s remember we’re disagreeing with people, and civility promotes the cause of humanity.

I’m certainly no saint, but I hope this blog makes the case for conservative causes with some intelligence and civility.