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Thursday, August 20, 2009

Rep. Rosa DeLauro: Obama Can Find Common Ground on Abortion

Democratic Rep. Rosa L. DeLauro represents Connecticut's Third Congressional District. She and Rep. Tim Ryan recently reintroduced the Preventing Unintended Pregnancies, Reducing the Need for Abortion and Supporting Parents Act.

Among the questions Dan asked me to consider for this post was the following: Can President Obama find common ground on—and reduce the need for—abortion? Well, yes, I believe he can. And I believe that, after many years of hard work by, and open dialogue with, advocates on all sides of the abortion issue, we in the House of Representatives have given the administration a template for this common, concerted action with the Ryan-DeLauro bill.

For too long, there has been too much heat and not enough light shed on the question of reducing abortion in this country. And for too long, we have allowed our differences to divide us on this contentious issue.

Now, I have been and will always be a strong and unyielding believer in a woman's fundamental right to choose. This is a belief I share with a majority of the American people, who continue to support Roe v. Wade and who oppose making it harder for women to get an abortion.

Many of my colleagues, including the bill's cosponsor, Congressman Tim Ryan of Ohio, have been equally passionate and committed to the opposing view. For all of us, on both sides of the abortion issue, this is not a decision taken lightly but a morally complex matter of conscience that goes to our most basic and fundamental principles.

That is why our bill takes a different approach to the abortion question from what we have seen in the past.

Put some peace in your tank

A joint Israeli-Jordanian-Palestinian biofuel project will alleviate thousands of tons of organic waste and produce one million barrels of biofuel, powering peace in the Middle East.

It's the kind of project that should bring a smile to the face of every leader in the Middle East: A true regional partnership, brokered by three peace foundations - that is about to reduce biomass pollution for Israelis, Jordanians and Palestinians.

Even better, it will transform biomass waste into biofuel, so that farmers and industrialists can turn a profit while simultaneously creating much-needed jobs in the region.

Abortion Law Backers Vow Oklahoma Appeal

A day after a judge struck down an Oklahoma law requiring women seeking an abortion to see an ultrasound of the fetus and listen to a description of its attributes, the state said it would appeal the ruling, and Republican lawmakers vowed to pass the law again in a different form.

While advocates of abortion rights celebrated the victory in court, they acknowledged the fight against one of the most sweeping anti-abortion laws in the country was likely to continue for months in the Legislature and before the State Supreme Court.

“It is one battle in the war, but the war shall continue,” said Martha Hardwick, a Tulsa lawyer with the Center for Reproductive Rights.

Op-Ed: Health care reforms are the antithesis of Nazi practice

With the health care debate seeming to degenerate into well-publicized spates of name calling and scare tactics, the following article clearly articulates the fallacy of comparing the proposed "public option" with the Nazi party's policies in Germany.

It is the nuclear bomb of epithets, a shorthand way of tarnishing any opponent. In recent weeks, Rush Limbaugh and others repeatedly have compared President Obama to Adolf Hitler and his health care policies to Nazi tactics. More than one activist showed up at a town hall meeting brandishing a swastika sign and Obama's name.

"They were for abortion and euthanasia of the undesirables," Limbaugh said of the Nazis on his radio program. "As we all know, they were for cradle-to-grave nationalized health care."

Reviewing what the Nazis actually did, and why, shows that such inapt comparisons reveal more about the attackers than the current proposals by the president or Congress.

Wednesday, August 05, 2009

An Abortion Battle, Fought to the Death

This is an insightful and detailed expose on Dr. George Tiller and his fight to provide health care to women in need.

WICHITA, Kan. — It did not take long for anti-abortion leaders to realize that George R. Tiller was more formidable than other doctors they had tried to shut down.

Shrewd and resourceful, Dr. Tiller made himself the nation’s pre-eminent abortion practitioner, advertising widely and drawing women to Wichita from all over with his willingness to perform late-term abortions, hundreds each year. As anti-abortion activists discovered, he gave as good as he got, wearing their contempt as a badge of honor. A “warrior,” they called him with grudging respect.

Abayudaya Jews deliver relief to famine-plagued Ugandans

ACEGEREKINEI VILLAGE, Uganda (JTA) -- After four hours of driving on ever tinier roads this morning, our food truck becomes stuck in the sand and we have to push it out. We are following the packed pickup in Rabbi Gershom Sizomu's SUV -- four members of his Abayudaya Jewish congregation, two Ugandan TV reporters and me, a semi-retired Canadian journalist volunteering with the Abayudaya.