Posts tagged ‘Live Action News & Opinion’


NY Senator Says Congress Needs More (Left-Wing) Women | Live Action News & Opinion

De Live Action News & Opinion, por Calvin Freiburger

Photo credit: ProgressOhio on Flickr

Once upon a time, the phrase “gender equality” meant exactly what it sounds like – securing the equal rights of women to do whatever men could, from the workplace to the ballot box. It was fundamentally about making sex less relevant in judging people’s worth and qualifications, about viewing them as individuals first and members of a group second.

Today’s pretenders to the feminist throne, for whom “women’s rights” and “gender equality” are but code words for abortion and birth control, have completely turned that principle on its head, as strikingly demonstrated by a recent RH Reality Check post on comments made by New York Democrat Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand. Robin Marty reports that Gillibrand realizes “how much work needs to be done to get more women running for office, especially women who don’t stump for the religious right”:

“[I]f we had 50 percent of women in Congress, we would not be debating contraception,” she said at a fundraiser, according to The Washington Post. “We would be debating the economy, small business, jobs, national security — everything but.”

Gillibrand is using her massive fundraising prowess to focus on other women now–in this case Tammy Duckworth in Wisconsin, Christie Vilsack in Iowa, and Val Demmings in Florida. If all three women won, it could make a massive change in the ratio not just of Republicans to Democrats in the House, but from male to female as well.

If Congress isn’t achieving Gillibrand’s desired results because too few lawmakers are female, presumably that means there’s something about being male that makes one’s judgment on such issues intrinsically worse, and something about being female that makes it intrinsically better.

Of course, that raises the obvious question of whether there are also issues that men are inherently better at deciding. Is Kathleen Sebelius’s leadership handicapping the Department of Health and Human Services with some sort of female-centric bias? It’s safe to assume that most left-wing feminists would bristle at such a suggestion, leaving us with only one alternative: women are just better.

If that’s the case, then the original feminists were wrong. The sexes aren’t equal. Men’s objectivity, comprehension, and decision-making skills are fundamentally inferior to women’s. Reason, justice, and prudence aren’t independent concepts accessible to all; only by possessing the right chromosomes can one fully perceive them.

Simply put, this is bunk. We are all individuals capable of reason, not drones beholden to hive minds. Men and women are equally capable of understanding how religious liberty and freedom of association work, reading that the Center for Disease Control’s own data finds no sign that women are suffering a crisis of “access” to birth control, and learning about the humanity of the unborn.

Not only does it deny the equality of the sexes and the objectivity of truth to suggest that only members of a particular demographic group are fit to govern for that group, but it also threatens to widen society’s divisions. If self-interest and the ability to perceive it are inextricably tied to one’s physical characteristics, then there’s no such thing as common good or general welfare, and trying to find them is a nonsensical exercise in futility. Earnest efforts to cross identity lines and find what’s best for everyone must give way to people banding together in “every demographic for itself!” struggles.

Ironically, Marty undermines the very quote she’s highlighting with her quip about how the female politicians we need aren’t part of the “religious right,” such as Gillibrand’s pro-life opponent, Republican attorney Wendy Long. Long, Sarah Palin, Michele Bachmann, and other female politicians are exactly the type of women feminists always say we need in politics: confident, passionate, and just as comfortable in the professional world as they are in the home. But despite, y’know, being women, they aren’t good for womankind, because they don’t sign onto the pro-abortion/forced contraception agenda.

In the name of “feminism,” abortion advocates have hijacked and corrupted everything the real feminists fought so hard to achieve, and all for a cause those venerable women would have been disgusted by. The best way to honor the legacy of Susan B. Anthony, Elizabeth Cady Stanton, and their allies is to rebuke Kirsten Gillibrand and her ilk.


Pro-Abortion Commitment to Late-Term Abortion Revealed in Legal Challenges | Live Action News & Opinion

De Live Action News & Opinion, por Rebecca Downs

The news has been full of pro-life laws over the past few weeks. I recently wrote an article about the reaction of Planned Parenthood to the organization’s loss of a lawsuit against the pro-life law in South Dakota, which mainly involved informed consent regarding the link between abortion and suicide.

Unfortunately, however, this week saw the setback of two pro-life bills. One involved a lawsuit against an Arizona law, which would ban abortions after 20 weeks of pregnancy not only based on fetal pain, but also because abortions which occur this late in term can be dangerous for women. Thus, the law was called “The Mother’s Health and Safety Act.”

While the bill was upheld a few days ago by a federal judge in Arizona in order for the bill to go into effect on August 2, it was halted at the last moment by the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals, only two days later, on August 1. Live Action News has just published a post about this lawsuit.

On July 31, the The D.C. Pain Capable Unborn Child Protection Act (H.R. 3803) was up for vote in the House, and while it gained a majority, it failed to capture the two-thirds vote. The final vote was 220-154, mostly along party lines. While it failed to acquire the necessary amount of votes, Michael New points out that such a necessity actually benefits the bill because then there is no room to allow for unnecessary amendments.

With the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals striking down the bill in Arizona and the 6 Republicans and 148 Democrats voting against H.R. 3803, is the abortion industry to blame (or commend)? Many pro-abortion organizations think so.

The lawsuit against “The Mother’s Health and Safety Act” was filed by the Center for Reproductive Rights (CRR) and the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU). While the ACLU does not focus solely on the issue of abortion, it is a pro-abortion organization. The following is a statement  from Nancy Northup, President and CEO of CRR and comes from the organization’s website:

Today’s decision by the Ninth Circuit is a vital reaffirmation of the constitutional protections for reproductive rights that have been upheld by the United States Supreme Court for nearly 40 years.

We have fought to keep all medical options, including abortion, available to every woman facing devastating complications in her pregnancy, and today we have won a critical victory.

We will continue this battle now to ensure that the private and personal decisions of Arizona women are not subject to arbitrary and dangerous restrictions advanced by an extreme anti-choice agenda.

The last sentence is especially telling in showing how pro-aborts really view this bill as a piece of legislation that restricts abortion in any way. In her own words, the primary focus is how it represents “an extreme anti-choice agenda” and has “arbitrary and dangerous restrictions” to advance this so-called agenda. While Ms. Northup may use such choice words to describe this bill, the fact of the matter is that this bill seeks to protect not only the unborn, but women as well. In such a statement it may seem that the only way to stand up for women and for “all medical options” is to include abortion and “reproductive rights.” I don’t think that Ms. Northup much cares that the title of the bill is “The Mother’s Health and Safety Act,” and I doubt that she sees any relevance to its title and how it protects the health and safety of a woman.

What the Center for Reproductive Rights calls “dangerous” in such a statement includes a prohibition on abortion past 20 weeks – not only because of pain felt by the pre-born child, but also because of safety risks to the mother. This comes from evidence that there are greater complications for a mother who has an abortion later in her pregnancy. It also establishes an informed consent website. Yet such a bill is said to be full of “arbitrary and dangerous restrictions” and involve “an extreme anti-choice agenda”? It is a wonder that the Center for Reproductive Rights and the ACLU have even read and are discussing the same bill, then.

In regards to the recently defeated H.R. 3803 bill, the National Organization for Women (NOW) not only is taking credit and claiming victory in defeat of the bill, but makes a political statement in calling for defeat of those who voted in favor. This should be kept in mind next time a person or organization says that it is the GOP or pro-lifers who are acting out of political motivation, just like House Democrat Whip Steny H. Hoyer (MD) said about this bill.The following is a statement from NOW President Terry O’Neill, which can be found on the organization’s website:

Today, extremists in Congress continued their War on Women by pressing for legislation that would criminalize abortions in the nation’s capital after 20 weeks of pregnancy. Sponsored by Rep. Trent Franks (R-Ariz.), the D.C. 20-Week Abortion Ban would have imposed federal fines and up to two years’ imprisonment for doctors, without exceptions for rape, incest or the pregnant woman’s health.

NOW and its allies worked around the clock to defeat the bill, and I am gratified that we succeeded. The next step is to replace those who voted for it with candidates who respect women’s fundamental right to make their own reproductive health care decisions.

The D.C. 20-week abortion ban is yet another example of House conservatives placing women’s health at risk as they pursue their reckless War on Women. The proposed ban, moreover, was a clear infringement of the District’s right to home rule, and yet another outrageous example of the radical right using D.C.’s lack of statehood as an excuse to set a federal precedent that chips away at Roe v. Wade.

Rep. Franks and the 220 representatives who voted for this divisive anti-woman bill have no business interfering with the private decisions a woman makes with her doctor. More importantly, they have no place in the House of Representatives.

From now to November, NOW activists will be working to defeat those who voted for this appalling bill and replace them with those who support our rights.

This statement is full of potent words to describe this bill and those who supported it, including “extremists,” “reckless,” “radical right,” “divisive anti-woman bill,” and “appalling.” All terms are used to describe what is a bill which is similar to the Arizona bill in that it outlaws abortion after 20 weeks based on scientific testimony that an unborn baby can feel pain at this point. To limit abortions after 20 weeks because of scientific evidence should not be considered extreme. An unborn child at this age appears increasingly more humanized. The unborn child at this age is developing more rapidly and looks even more similar to premature babies who are born. He or she may also be viable outside of the womb in just a few short weeks. Rational pro-choicers I would like to think do not advocate for abortion because it causes pain and suffering for the unborn child. Rather, they seek to provide a woman with options when it comes to whether or not she will carry her pregnancy to term. A bill such as this would not all out end abortion. It would limit abortion past 20 weeks, for the sake of the mother as well, and would still allow a woman to seek out and have an abortion prior to this 20 week period. This law is even in place already in a few states. What Terry O’Neill may not know or may ignore is the fact that the opposite political effect may in fact happen. As Douglas Johnson is said to have mentioned, it is the 154 representatives who will have to explain their vote. The LifeNews article where Johnson is mentioned also includes numbers from a poll taken by the National Right to Life Committee:

A recent poll commissioned by the National Right to Life Committee found that 63 percent of Americans, and 70 percent of women, support legislation to ban abortions past the point at which unborn children feel pain. The NRLC poll also found that American women, by an overwhelming majority of 62-27 percent, would be more likely to vote for lawmakers who support this bill.

Most who are against abortion know that such passage of either of these bills would be a victory. Even if it is not the desired outcome of the overturning of Roe v. Wade just yet, it at least limits abortion based on evidence with a possibility that both sides could hopefully find common ground on if the result is less women dying.

Most pro-lifers believe that abortion at any stage is wrong because it takes the life of an unborn human being. Most pro-choicers disagree on the belief that the mother’s womb contains just a blob of tissue.

The common ground should at least be that abortion can and does hurt women. And it has a greater risk of doing so later in term. Evidence and studies about effects from abortion such as mental health or a suicide link are often disputed. But if a woman dies or has a physical injury from abortion, that cannot so much be disputed.

If such bills went into effect, they would not ban abortion before 20 weeks. Women would still be able to get an abortion. They would just be able to get an abortion only before 20 weeks because of the pain the unborn child would feel after that and out of safety to themselves. How is that “continu[ing] their War on Women”?

Such bills are not continuing a “War on Women.” It’s time to call out the issues here for what they really are. Such bills are a “War on Abortion.” And abortion, in many ways, with the death of girls not yet born and of Ms. Tonya Reaves, has shown to actually be the real “War on Women.” Thus, even if such organizations as the Center for Reproductive Rights and the National Organization for Women, which even has the word “Women” in its name, claim to be fighting for women’s rights, they are really fighting more for abortion rights. And by opposing a bill that a majority of Americans, and of women, support, they are really the extreme and radical ones in this situation.

I would like to hear from an ordinary supporter or volunteer for one of these organizations. I don’t want to hear from the CEO or the president, both of whom stand to gain from such legislation failing. I want to hear from a regular pro-choicer, preferably who has read up on both of the bills. What cause is there to call either of these bills so extreme? What cause is there to consider those who sponsor or voted for either of these bills so extreme? Is it merely because they hold a different viewpoint?

In an ideal world, if these organizations actually fought for the women they claim to fight for in their statements, rather than for abortion, one could maybe even expect such organizations to support either of these bills rather than filing lawsuits and celebrating defeat. Alas, this cannot be expected, because it all comes down to supporting, even worshiping, the altar of abortion on demand and without any restrictions.

CRR, NOW, and other similar organizations are so beholden, and at an extreme level, to this ideology of abortion, which is the real reason why they so strong oppose both of these bills. These are organizations that fight not only for the “right” to abortion, which they certainly do, but as they have shown to do in speaking out against these seemingly common sense bills with a majority in support of them, they will fight against any limitations whatsoever. Both of these bills are dangerous then, certainly. They are dangerous to abortion, though, not to women. Such organizations have to make a decision as to whom and what they are going to really fight for: women or abortion?


Abortionist Refers to Black Babies as Ugly and as Potential Murderers | Live Action News & Opinion

De Live Action News & Opinion, por Cassy Fiano

Racism has always had a home in the abortion industry. It started with Planned Parenthood founder Margaret Sanger, a eugenicist who advocated for the limiting of the black population through her Negro Project to, in her words, “stop the multiplication of the unfit.” Live Action’s Racism Project proved that Sanger’s legacy is still alive and thriving at Planned Parenthood today. The overall abortion industry continues to target minority women. And while black women make up only about 12% of the U.S. population, they get about 36% of the abortions. Yes, racism is indeed alive and well in today’s abortion industry.

That doesn’t make this video any less horrifying.

In the video, Charlotte, NC abortionist Ron Virmani claims that he doesn’t want to force taxpayers to pay for “those babies,” that he doesn’t want them “to be born and brought up and kill those people in Colorado,” and he asks if the people he’s talking to want to adopt “those ugly black babies.”

So to recap, black babies are apparently a burden to taxpayers, will grow up to be murderers, and are ugly to boot.

This is just further evidence of the inherent racism in the abortion industry, which, sadly, rarely gets brought to light.


Facebook Page Promotes Abortion, Attacks Child with a Terminal Condition | Live Action News & Opinion

De Live Action News & Opinion, por Nancy Flanders

Facebook has become a major communications network for people of all ages throughout the world. Created as a way to allow high school friends to keep in touch after heading to college, the social media site has erupted into a place where people are free to bully and free to create offensive, harmful pages. One such page is simply titled “Abortions.”

Despite countless e-mails to Facebook to remove the page, Facebook refuses. It doesn’t consider the page offensive or involved in hate speech despite the fact that the page’s creator continuously posts pictures of a girl who lives with Progeria, calling her ugly and comparing her to vampires. But the Abortions page’s main purpose is to make light of abortion, from comments about all aborted babies being in hell to cartoons of a man kicking a pregnant woman in the belly. The page has over 7,000 likes.

Melissa Ohden, abortion survivor and pro-life speaker, says the following about Abortions on Facebook:

The disconnect on this page is striking. To me, it’s symptomatic of our culture. So many people believe they are exceptional, but they never believe that they could have easily been an exception (unplanned, expected to have a disability, etc) and therefore aborted.

The administrators believe that abortion is necessary. They believe that in the first and second trimesters, the unborn child is nothing but “skin cells.” And they are sharing these warped, uneducated opinions with vulnerable young people on Facebook every day.

Ohden isn’t surprised by the page, as it isn’t anything she hasn’t seen before. She says:

As an abortion survivor, I’m appalled but not surprised by this page and others like it. The Internet and social media create positive opportunities for educating and networking, but likewise, create the opportunity for people to engage in de-humanizing behaviors. Not surprisingly, most of these people, when given the opportunity to say something face to face to me, other survivors, or the individuals and families that they target on their page, wouldn’t say these things. They say they would, but experience has shown me that they wouldn’t. It is ‘safe’ for them to act this way on the internet.

It turns out that their reach is going beyond Facebook. The two page administrators don’t stop at calling aborted babies “lumps of meat,” posting pictures of just-born babies in toilets, or attacking a child with disabilities online; they recently spoke on a radio show, sharing their opinion of abortion with anyone who would listen. They consider themselves pro-abortion, saying it is the correct choice because of overpopulation (although one of them says that there is room on the planet and resources, too). They also suggest that men slip abortion pills into their pregnant partners’ breakfast. They go on to compare unborn children to pigs, leaving the radio hosts momentarily speechless. They even promote infanticide, calling it morally acceptable.

During the radio show, one of the administrators thinks he’s blown our minds by saying that we’re killing potential life any moment that we aren’t having sex. He says that there is no difference between adult pigs and newborn babies, and when the radio host responds that the baby has more potential than the pig, the administrator argues unsuccessfully that anyone who is currently not having sex at this very moment is therefore aborting potential life.

While we can hope that the absurdity of the Abortions page won’t influence anyone, it is likely that its posts, which can be seen when a friend comments on them, will affect some young Facebook users.

Luckily, there is a page on Facebook called “1,000,000 people to take down the Abortions page.” Unfortunately, it has only just over 1,000 likes. Whether you’re pro-choice or pro-life, you should find the Abortions page offensive, just as it is likely offensive to abortion survivors, women who regret their abortions, and people with disabilities. Report the page to Facebook, and like the page against it. Our voices will change the way the world views abortion and the level of respect we show for others.


Memorials for the Unborn: Do Post-Abortive Families Need Places to Grieve? | Live Action News & Opinion

De Live Action News & Opinion, por Christina Martin

I used to live thirty minutes outside Washington, D.C. During that time I decided to take the Metrorail into the district to visit the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum. When I walked through the exhibits, I was struck by haunting pictures of beautiful Jewish men, women, and children. I was stunned as I watched video clips of bodies being thrown into pits by the hundreds. My heart was heavy, and my soul grieved for the loss of millions of people I’d never met.

The Holocaust Museum provides more than a history lesson. It gives people a place to grieve the loss of precious lives. Names are remembered, survivor testimonies are told, and countless tears are shed. After leaving the museum, I felt numbed by mankind’s capacity for wickedness while empowered to stand against injustice in my day.

When we look at the issue of abortion, we see that the death toll is staggering. Some estimate that over 54 million babies have died from legalized abortion in the U.S alone. Unlike the Jews who died in WWII, the innocent children  killed in the womb leave behind no memories. In many cases, the only ones who remember the loss of a child are the parents who chose abortion. These parents can suffer feelings of great regret and shame long after their abortion.

The National Memorial for the Unborn, located in Chattanooga, Tennessee, is a place where parents come to mourn their deceased children. The memorial is built on a site that once held Chattanooga’s only abortion clinic. Over 35,000 babies were aborted on those grounds. On the property is a fifty-foot granite “Wall of Names” which is made up of brass plates with the names of children who have died. There is a “Remembrance Garden” and a Pool of Tears that is dedicated to the memory of babies lost through miscarriage.

Recently articles have been released about a new pro-life memorial that is proposed to be built in Wichita, Kansas. The World of Life Church has plans to build a “National Pro-life Memorial and International Life Center.” Blueprints for the memorial include a garden of crosses to represent the holocaust of the unborn, as well as a replica of the Wailing Wall found in Jerusalem.

Plans for the memorial have already stirred up controversy among Jewish leaders. Rabbi Micheal Davis of Congregation Emanu-El in Wichita has a problem with the proposal. He told the Daily Jewish Forward, “I see it as another example of a non-Jewish group taking a Jewish symbol and reinterpreting it for their own private use and thereby bastardizing it.”

Reaction to the memorial is premature, since the idea is only still a vision. The leader behind the memorial project is a controversial activist, and the proposed goal of raising 20-40 million dollars is unlikely to be met.

Even those in the pro-life community question the memorial. Popular writer Jill Stanek asked her readers:

I’m not sure this memorial will ever be built, or that Wichita is the right place for such a memorial, but nevertheless, is adding a Wailing Wall going too far? Is it right to co-opt a sacred Jewish site?

Most of the opposition towards the Wailing Wall memorial centers on the question of whether or not it’s offensive to use a Jewish landmark in reference to abortion. That is a serious question we should ponder. It’s important to stand against abortion while still being sensitive to those around us. A more general question I have is this: should there be more places for post-abortive families to grieve the loss of their children?

Across the nation there are a few sites, from a memorial for the unborn gravestone in a California cemetery to 350 crosses commemorating the loss of babies through abortion at the Cemetery of the Innocents at Clarion University in Clarion, PA. Are these memorials an important, necessary part of the healing process for those who have suffered loss through abortion?

In an article titled “Gift of Closure,” R.N Leslie T. Dean writes about her time at the Chattanooga Memorial for the unborn :

After I came to terms with what I had done, I found healing and peace. But I wanted finally to give “life” to the baby I had denied for so long. This memorial provided me with that opportunity. My baby now has a name, and I have closure — at last.

Later she states:

We may never know the impact that these memorials to the unborn have on the families of babies lost to abortion. Some have made decisions for Christ, some have restored their families, some have sought counseling for dysfunctional lifestyles, and some have turned from depression and thoughts of suicide to optimism and hope. There is no way to know how many people have been helped, but we do know that God knows and cares about every one of them.

I agree with Leslie. If memorials for the unborn provide places for regretful post-abortive families to mourn their children and gain closure, then perhaps we should have one in every state. What do you think?


Born-Alive History: Associated Press Labeled a Born Child as a Fetus | Live Action News & Opinion

De Live Action News & Opinion, por Heidi Miller

While looking up the history of the Born-Alive Infants Protection Act, which just passed its tenth anniversary of being signed into law, I came across a letter posted on the National Right to Life’s website. This is a letter that was written to the Associated Press after the approval of the Born-Alive Infants Protection Act by the U.S. House.  The focus of the letter was issue of labeling a child born alive.

The fight to define words. (Photo credit: fijneman on Flickr)

I wrote last week about the use of words to dehumanize the pro-life issue – people who would rather call an unborn child a “fetus” or “tissue.” At that time, I did not think that people would argue that the term “fetus” could be extended to include a child after birth. But the Associated Press did just that.

After approval of the bill by the House, the Associated Press reported, “A fetus outside a woman’s body that has a heartbeat or is breathing on its own would be considered ‘born alive’ and given legal protection under a bill approved by the House.”

Seventeen members of the United States House of Representatives wrote a letter to the Associated Press asking for an explanation for the use of the term “fetus,” and even included the dictionary definition which clearly stated that the classification ends at “the moment of birth.” The letter stated that “using the term ‘fetus’ to describe a born child seems so clearly inaccurate medically and scientifically” and asked for an explanation as to the word choice.

In a press release, the National Right to Life explained:

Sometimes induction of labor is used as a method of abortion, and sometimes this results in a live birth.  This is sometimes referred to as a “live birth abortion.”  On occasion, other abortion methods also result in live births.  But a premature infant is a premature infant – and a legally protected person – regardless of how he or she reached that state.

The question was posed: under the use of the word as understood by the Associated Press, at what point would a child who survived an abortion actually be considered a person instead of a fetus? If not after he or she is born, then when?

While I don’t think that an unborn child should be dehumanized by being referred to as a fetus, it is most certainly not an appropriate word for a child who has already been born. Who would have thought there would even need to be a discussion about whether a child born alive could be classified as a child? It just goes to show the bias in the media and fact that fighting for the life of the unborn is an uphill battle. Somehow I do not think in the last ten years that the media has gotten any less biased.


Thoughts from President Bush on the Signing of the Born-Alive Infants Protection Act | Live Action News & Opinion

De Live Action News & Opinion, por Heidi Miller

Ten years ago today, on August 5, 2002, a group gathered in Pittsburgh to watch President Bush sign the Born-Alive Infants Protection Act. The purpose of this act was to protect the lives of children after they were born, particularly protecting those who survived an abortion.

In his speech, President Bush spoke of the importance of protecting the weak and powerless:

President Bush signing the Born Alive Infants Protection Act (Photo Credit:

The history of our country is the story of a promise, a promise of life and liberty made at our founding and fulfilled over the centuries in our laws. It is a story of expanding inclusion and protection for the ignored and the weak and the powerless. And now we extend the promise and protection to the most vulnerable members of our society.

He spoke of the worth of children:

The issue of abortion divides Americans, no question about it. Yet today we stand on common ground. The Born Alive Infants Protection Act establishes a principle in America law and American conscience: there is no right to destroy a child who has been born alive.  A child who is born has intrinsic worth and must have the full protection of our laws.

And he also spoke of the importance of protecting the lives of the unborn, referring to the bill as a “step” in the process:

Today, through sonograms and other technology, we can clearly – see clearly that unborn children are members of the human family, as well.  They reflect our image, and they are created in God’s own image.

The Born Alive Infants Protection Act is a step toward the day when every child is welcomed in life and protected in law.  It is a step toward the day when the promises of the Declaration of Independence will apply to everyone, not just those with the voice and power to defend their rights. This law is a step toward the day when America fully becomes, in the words of Pope John Paul II, “a hospitable, a welcoming culture.”

Ten years later, the issue of abortion still divides Americans. While the step of passing the Born-Alive Infants Protection Act was taken, more steps need to follow. Life in all stages must be protected.


Personhood Challenges Nationally Legalized Abortion at the U.S. Supreme Court | Live Action News & Opinion

De Live Action News & Opinion, por Josh Craddock

This week, Personhood USA’s state affiliate in Oklahoma delivered an appeal to the Supreme Court of the United States which has the potential to overturn the infamous Roe v. Wade and Planned Parenthood v. Casey decisions.

Earlier this summer, the Supreme Court of Oklahoma wrote an ill-argued decision against the state Personhood ballot initiative, thus denying Oklahoma voters their right to decide the issue and petition-circulators their right to petition the government. The State Supreme Court’s action in striking down the initiative – before it had even been voted upon – was a case of overreach in judicial review that provided a golden opportunity for appeal.

The appeal, dubbed Personhood Oklahoma v. Barber, et al., will call for redress of Oklahomans’ First and Tenth Amendment rights. ”This is about the fundamental rights of people in a state to decide for themselves what the law in their state should be,” said Steve Crampton, the attorney from Liberty Counsel who represents Personhood Oklahoma.

In his Casey dissent, Justice Antonin Scalia underscored the right of citizens to vote on the issue:

The permissibility of abortion, and the limitations upon it, are to be resolved like most important questions in our democracy: by citizens trying to persuade one another and then voting.

Personhood USA legal analyst Gualberto Garcia Jones believes that denying this democratic decision-making opportunity exposes a chink in abortion’s judicial armor. “The undue burden of the standard of Casey is completely unworkable,” he explains. “With such a vague standard and any variety of interpretations, it is impossible for citizens to understand it and apply it.”

Over the past three years, Personhood has surprised many by surpassing expectations of how many people would vote for a total ban on abortion. Since then, the movement has steadily built support from voters, Republican candidates, and pro-life groups. Now Liberty Counsel and Personhood Oklahoma are taking a major step forward for the pro-life movement by creating a new challenge at the U.S. Supreme Court – giving the nation’s highest court a chance to reverse nationally legalized abortion.

“Our mission is obedience to Christ and defending the lives of all innocent children,” Keith Mason, president of Personhood USA, told supporters. ”The ‘end goal’ has never been to get a case before the U.S. Supreme Court, or to overturn Roe, because it is often argued that such actions are not necessary to end abortion.” However, Mason believes that this appeal “has taken us straight to the heart of the battle, fast-forwarding several years.”

“Regardless of the outcome of this case, Personhood has proven itself effective in its methods and strategy, not only by saving lives, but by legally being the first to bring a legitimate, direct legal challenge to Planned Parenthood v. Casey,” Mason added.

If the recent Supreme Court decision on the Affordable Care Act teaches us anything, it is that the Court is unpredictable. Justices made their decisions for reasons few could have expected. Instead of worrying, hand-wringing, and making prognostications about how the nation’s highest court will vote, Personhood USA will continue striving to protect the pre-born by love and by law. For pro-life Oklahomans, it’s never the wrong time to do the right thing.


PPH Medicaid Fraud Case, Part 2: Patient-Specific Abuses | Live Action News & Opinion

De Live Action News & Opinion, por Stephen Brown

In my previous article, I summarized the lawsuit brought against Planned Parenthood of the Heartland (PPH). I also gave some background on the woman who filed the suit, Susan Thayer, a former manager of two clinics. In this article, I’ll be focusing on the first of three main groups of fraud schemes within the suit. If you have not yet read the previous article, I recommend doing so first. You can find it here:

From at least January 1, 1999, to the present and continuing, Planned Parenthood, acting through its officers, agents, and employees, including Jill June, CEO of Planned Parenthood, combined, conspired, and agreed together and with each other and with others not named herein to defraud the United States and the State of Iowa by knowingly submitting and/or causing to be submitted […] false, fraudulent, and/or ineligible claims for reimbursement […] and knowingly using, or causing to be made or used, false records and/or statements material to false or fraudulent claims. […] Planned Parenthood engaged in three fraudulent schemes, which are detailed herein,” reads the suit.

The first group of schemes is the most patient-specific, as it not only involves fraudulent charges, but the safety and privacy of patients, which Planned Parenthood disregarded by “the making, in violation of the applicable […] laws and regulations, of false, fraudulent, and/or ineligible claims […] for reimbursement from Title XIX-Medicaid funds for oral contraceptive pills (herein “OCPs” or birth control pills”) (i) never delivered to the patient; (ii) dispensed to a patient without a physician’s order or prior to a physician’s order; (iii) dispensed to a patient at levels not medically reasonable or necessary and/or constituting “abuse or overuse” and/or not consistent with professionally recognized standards of care and practice; or (iv) dispensed without the patient’s knowledge or consent and/or without having the patient undergo periodic examinations or new annual exams as required.

Planned Parenthood is required “to maintain clinical and fiscal records necessary to fully disclose the extent of services, care, and supplies furnished to Medicaid members” and to document:

  • The medical necessity of the services.
  • That services provided are consistent with the diagnosis of the patient’s condition.
  • That services are consistent with professionally recognized standards of care.

Services “covered by Medicaid shall:

  • Be consistent with the diagnosis and treatment of the patient’s condition.
  • Be in accordance with standards of good medical practice.
  • Be required to meet the medical need of the patient and be for reasons other than the convenience of the patient or the patient’s practitioner or caregiver.
  • Be the least costly type of service that would reasonably meet the medical need of the patient.
  • Be provided with full knowledge and consent of the patient or someone acting in the patient’s behalf[.]“

Lastly, the Iowa All Provider Manual states that “[p]ayment will not be made for medical care and services:

  • That are medically unnecessary or unreasonable.
  • That fail to meet existing standards of professional practice, [or] are currently professionally unacceptable…
  • That are fraudulently claimed.
  • That represent abuse or overuse.”

On all above counts, Planned Parenthood has violated the law, based on Thayer’s evidence. The central point of evidence is Planned Parenthood’s patient records system, which utilizes a centralized computer network that links to the Des Moines office and is accessible by all managers. Thayer, given her position at two clinics, “in compiling and processing bills for medical services or supplies rendered to patients[,]” had access not only to her clinics’ patient information, but to all PPH patients’ information. This centralized system “is based upon input from each Planned Parenthood clinic and includes information or data relating to each patient and medical services or supplies provided to each patient.” That data from each visit by a patient (or “encounter,” as Title X refers to it) is sent to the Iowa Medicaid Enterprise and the Iowa Family Planning Network for reimbursement.

What Thayer noticed in recording and reviewing billing information was that PPH was having its employees use the Medicaid system as an income source in ways that not just were illegal uses of tax-payer funds, but also failed to provide safety, privacy, and standards of professional medical care to patients. These practices were “in accordance with the directions given to Relator [Thayer] by her supervisor, Planned Parenthood Regional Director Todd Buchacker[.] … By virtue of her positions … , Relator had access to and frequently viewed billing information, patient charts, and records for patients at all other Planned Parenthood clinics[.] … In this way, Relator could and often did view entries in each patient billing record, including patient case histories, medical services and prescription medications provided, test and lab results, staff chart notations, charges to patients and payments credited to the patient’s account whether made by patients or others, including insurers, Iowa Medical Enterprise and/or Iowa Family Planning Network, and donations to Planned Parenthood.”

Starting in 2006, one of these new income sources was the “C-Mail Program, which was designed to provide birth control pills or patches to all patients and in particular, due to its revenue potential to Planned Parenthood, to Medicaid-eligible patients. During this phase of Planned Parenthood’s C-Mail Program, Medicaid-eligible women seeking birth control pills … would, following an initial examination, be prescribed a three menstrual cycle supply (i.e. 84 birth control pills) of birth control pills and would sign a consent form approving their participation in … C-Mail … and authorizing Planned Parenthood to use the U.S. Postal Service to mail birth control pills to addresses specified by the patient.” These initial exams and prescriptions, in many cases, were not performed or approved by a primary physician, in violation of above laws. Additionally, “many [PPH] patients chose not to participate [in C-Mail], in many cases because these patients, ostensibly for personal reasons, did not want birth control pills or patches to be mailed to their homes or to their dormitories.”

“Because Planned Parenthood’s revenues were not sufficient to cover its abortion-related and other expenses, representatives […] began to seek ways to enhance Planned Parenthood’s revenues … [therefore, PPH] charged its Health Services Management Team (herein “HSMT Team”), made up of, among others, Planned Parenthood CEO Jill June; Planned Parenthood Vice President of Health Services & Education Penny Dickey; Planned Parenthood’s Regional Directors Todd Buchacker, Deb Lord, Jennifer Warren-Ulrick, and Sheri Sperlich, to develop methods to enhance revenue to Planned Parenthood to cover this shortfall.”

They determined that allowing patients to opt into C-Mail meant many would opt out, which left PPH unable to bill Medicaid for birth control, cutting a major potential cash source. Those who did opt in often received OCPs for ONLY 4-7 menstrual cycles and didn’t renew the participation/prescription. They realized that PPH “could increase its revenues by [switching] the C-Mail Program to a mandatory program [emphasis mine] whereby patients were supplied OCPs for a full year.” This change enabled PPH to make $26.32 per cycle, or $342.16 per year, per patient prescription of Tri-Cylclen Lo, Planned Parenthood’s preferred OCP. Within months of creating C-Mail, PPH had converted the program so any female who visited them was sent OCPs to her home or dorm “usually without the advance knowledge and/or written consent of the patient and/or without informing the patient that the patient could affirmatively decline to participate.”

The mandatory program became a competition amongst PPH clinics to see who could get more women into the C-Mail Program. Using the current numbers as a baseline, PPH established a percentage-increase goal to get 7,667 enrolled by October 31, 2008. The automatic enrollment coupled with a competition incentive to grow the program led to at least 7,000 females being enrolled by December 31, 2008, meaning at least $2,395,120 per year in new revenue from Medicaid funds. This subsidized PPH’s basic needs and operations, among other expenses, including abortions. As the suit states, “in most cases no physician or other qualified clinician participated in the initial exam of the patient.”

With Planned Parenthood’s “favorable arrangement with the manufacturer,” Tri-Cyclen Lo was the preferred OCP and was not only handed out during the initial visit by a patient, but also mailed to her, giving her a double supply and consequently billing Medicaid twice for the first cycle. “In this manner, Planned Parenthood created a medically unnecessary surplus of at least 120.96 doses [per patient per year], resulting in overcharges … of at least $113.70 per patient. Moreover, … most patients were neither examined by a physician or other qualified physician at the initial patient examination or at any time thereafter for at least one year or more after the initial OCP prescription[.]” Those who did go in for a yearly exam generally had a Hormonal Option without Pelvic Exam or HOPE, which involved a non-medical employee who assists in filling out a patient form and doing a blood pressure check. Following the HOPE, another year’s worth of OCPs would be prescribed through C-Mail. “In some cases following a patient’s HOPE examination, sometimes days later, an advanced registered nurse practitioner (“ARNP”) would appear at the Planned Parenthood clinic [where the exam occurred] and sign off on all OCP prescriptions which had already been given to patients.”

“Planned Parenthood did not contact patients to confirm that patients wanted and/or needed OCP prescriptions to be refilled and mailed. In many cases, patients had moved from the address [and gave no forwarding address]. In these cases, OCPs mailed … were returned … to Planned Parenthood. Notwithstanding these facts, Planned Parenthood did not credit or otherwise make an adjustment to its billings or reimbursements [from Medicaid]. In fact, [PPH] instructed its staff to return OCPs that had been returned in the mail to the inventory of OCPs and to reship such returned OCPs to future patients, thereby effectively billing [Medicaid] at least twice for the same OCPs.”

This unsolicited dispensing of drugs to people’s homes, dorms, and campus post offices enabled family, roommates, and mailbox sharers to see that the women were getting regular packages from PPH, violating the privacy of even those who used OCPs and creating conflicts for those opposed to taking them. “Patients complained to Planned Parenthood, including to Relator when she managed Planned Parenthood’s clinics, that these patients had requested [that they] cease mailing OCPs to them. Some of these patients reported that the unsolicited delivery of OCPs to a patient’s home or dormitory caused severe strain on the patient’s relationships. Notwithstanding such requests from patients, [PPH] continued to mail such patients a three menstrual cycle supply of OCPs every 63 days for at least one full year from the date of the initial patient examination.

“On several occasions, physicians in the Iowa area, upon becoming aware of Planned Parenthood’s practice of prescribing birth control without an interim comprehensive examination of the patient, objected to Planned Parenthood or to others about this practice and stated that this practice was below the medical standard of care. [PPH] justified its practice by contending that OCPs would soon be available over-the-counter and that [they] therefore considered it acceptable to prescribe and distribute OCPs in this manner.” As one can imagine, it doesn’t matter that a drug may become available over the counter in the future, but only that it is currently not, which means it requires a prescription and physician involvement. This justification by PP is also exposed in Live Action’s undercover videos and PP’s public statements that they failed to report the purported sexual assault of minors immediately (or at all) because they suspected that Live Action might be behind them. The law does not provide for PP to fail to comply if they feel justified in doing so.

“From mid-2006 through and after December 31, 2008, [PPH] prescribed and dispensed OCPs to patients arbitrarily enrolled in the program, totaling at least $3,316,320 per year as a result of which [they] submitted false, fradulent, or ineligible claims to [Medicaid] and/or Iowa Family Planning Network of $824,768.78 or more per year.”

In summary, the suit states that in light of the above, PPH’s practices were medically unnecessary and/or unreasonable, failed to meet existing standards of practice, were professionally unacceptable, were fraudulently claimed, represented abuse or overuse, and resulted in the distribution to patients of OCPs that were not written or approved by a primary physician.

For information regarding the second fraud charge group, please see my next article in this series.


The Targeting of Pro-Life Protesters | Live Action News & Opinion

De Live Action News & Opinion, por Kristi Burton Brown

Protesting is becoming increasingly common in our world.

Protesting. It’s a rather common thing in our world today. Whether you’re talking about the Occupy Wall Street protesters, the Arab Spring protesters, pro-life protesters, the Westboro Baptist Church protesters, or the “kiss-in” protesters at Chik-Fil-a, protesting is becoming less of a foreign idea and more of the “thing” to do. Thankfully, unlike many protesters throughout the world, we live in a nation that guarantees our right to free speech and our right to speak out in support of or against certain ideas.

Of course, we all could easily name protesters we agree with and those that we completely oppose. (Personally, I particularly disagree with the Westboro protesters since it’s obvious they give Christianity a bad name with their outlandish claims and cruel statements.) It’s obvious to anyone who’s read my articles that I agree with the position of most pro-life protesters. Welcome to America. We all have the right to support and not support a variety of causes.

But here’s what I don’t like – and I’m hoping you can agree with me here. Pro-life protesters are specifically called out and unfairly discriminated against. The “kiss-in” declared by the gay community yesterday at Chik-Fil-a restaurants across the nation is a perfect example. Nowhere do you hear widespread outrage against this protest. Nowhere do you hear people overwhelmingly demand that innocent children should not be exposed to the kissing or other actions of people who their parents may teach them are morally wrong. Nowhere do you hear demands for “bubble laws” against gay protesters outside family restaurants.

Regardless of your stance on gay rights, we can all agree that there were families at Chik-Fil-a yesterday who didn’t want their children to watch two men kiss. We can all agree that Chik-Fil-a does not support gay marriage – although they have stated they will freely serve any person, regardless of their sexual orientation. We can all agree that the “kiss-in” was an “in-your-face” protest:  we’ll do what we want, anywhere we want, no matter what you or anyone else thinks. Ok, this is America. The gay community technically has the right to do this, no matter how much their actions were in bad taste or offensive to some.

Students stand together in prayerful protest – Photo credit: Bethany Bolen

Here’s the problem: people constantly complain about pro-life protesters who hold up signs of aborted babies or who stand outside abortion clinics – or the houses of abortion doctors – and protest what’s happening. These protesters are commonly called out for “offensiveness” and “bad taste.”  Cities and states pass “bubble laws”. Pro-life protesters are arrested for actions that no other protesters can be arrested for. And why? Simply because of the issue they are protesting. This is wrong, discriminatory, and very hypocritical.  Plain and simple, it’s un-American.

Now, I can already hear some people saying that pro-life protesting is different than yesterday’s “kiss-in”. After all, pro-life protesting is much more common. Well, so? Just because a viewpoint is more commonly protested against, should the protesting be prohibited? Exactly how does that support free speech? Others will say that the posters of bloody, cut-up, aborted babies are much more offensive than two men kissing. Well, in whose opinion? Yours, obviously. But not everyone will agree. And each American has the right to be more offended by one thing than another. The fact that an action is offensive is not a reason for it to lose its free speech rights.

Still others will claim that the women entering abortion clinics are in a perilous time of life and need to be protected. But aren’t small children in Chik-Fil-a young, impressionable, and arguably in a perilous time of life themselves? Couldn’t we argue that parents should have the right to take their children to a family restaurant without the risk of seeing offensive public displays of affection? And again, I’m not arguing for or against gay rights – I’m simply putting forward arguments that many Americans could indeed make.

Let’s finally consider the position of abortion clinic workers – who many believe should not be exposed to protesters as they enter and leave their workplace. Yet it’s the very same argument that could be made for the employees of Chik-Fil-a – many of whom are young high school students. Why should they be exposed to protesters, including some who may be rude or unkind to them because of the company they work for?

Indeed this protest situation in America is patently unfair and targeted against pro-lifers. Though pro-life protesters are protesting an actual act that kills people (abortion) and not mere words of personal opinion (Chik-Fil-a), they are the ones who are arrested, attacked, and targeted in the law. The situation truly couldn’t be more un-American.


Planned Parenthood Requests Donations as President Obama’s Birthday Present | Live Action News & Opinion

De Live Action News & Opinion, por Lucy LeFever

Along with their mutual pro-abortion agendas, Planned Parenthood and President Obama have something else in common: desperate fundraising schemes.

President Obama was recently criticized for a fundraising ploy that asks brides to request campaign donations in lieu of gifts. The president’s website reads:

Got a birthday, anniversary, or wedding coming up?

Let your friends know how important this election is to you—register with Obama 2012, and ask for a donation in lieu of a gift. It’s a great way to support the President on your big day. Plus, it’s a gift that we can all appreciate—and goes a lot further than a gravy bowl.

Meanwhile, Planned Parenthood has tried countless tasteless fundraisers. At Christmas, Planned Parenthood did a fundraiser in the name of “Choice on Earth” and even sold holiday gift certificates. Multiple times, the abortion giant has ironically asked that supporters celebrate Mother’s Day with a donation to its abortion clinic. Now Planned Parenthood is trying out the president’s own tacky scheme – in his honor.

As President Obama’s birthday is upon us, I’m sure that you are all struggling to find the perfect gift. What does one get for the man who lives in the White House and travels in Air Force One? For those of you still searching for that special something that “goes a lot further than a gravy bowl,” put your mind at ease. Planned Parenthood has a solution for you! A recent Planned Parenthood Advocates of Indiana announcement reads:

On August 4, President Barack Obama will celebrate his 51st birthday. President Obama has been a champion for women’s issues and has spent a lifetime supporting women and reproductive health. Why not honor his 51st birthday by making a donation to Planned Parenthood Advocates?

Now, that is a gift that a president can appreciate – and it goes a lot farther than a campaign donation.

A lot of missing candles…

Could they be more tasteless? Celebrating a birthday by donating to an abortion clinic? Planned Parenthood takes the birthdays from thousands of children every single year. In 2010, the abortion giant performed 329,445 abortions – halting over 900 birthdays per day. That’s a lot of missing candles.

Planned Parenthood has distorted the true meaning of birthdays. The abortion chain denies a child’s humanity until he or she exits the womb. While birthdays should be a milestone in a child’s existence, to Planned Parenthood they have become a requirement for a child’s existence. In today’s culture, a child’s birth date is when it is freed from the danger of being aborted. Why mark the anniversary of that freedom by taking that freedom from others?

Planned Parenthood’s schemes would be laughable if they weren’t so lethal. If you’re looking to celebrate the president’s birthday, don’t stop other birthdays in the process.


I AM TONYA REAVES: While Obama, Sharpton and Jackson remain silent, black pro-life leaders speak out on abortion-related tragedy! | Live Action News & Opinion

De Live Action News & Opinion, por Christina Martin

Tonya Reaves was a beautiful 24-year-old black woman. Tonya was an engaged mother of a one-year-old son named Alvin. She had a twin sister named Toni and a family that loved her. For reasons we may never know, Tonya went to an Illinois Planned Parenthood for an abortion on Friday, July 20, 2012.

I’m a 30-year-old black woman who’s looking forward to marriage and children in my future. For reasons I openly disclose, I am adamantly opposed to abortion. While there are differences between Tonya and me, there are also common bonds that link us together – specifically, the reality that we are members of a race that’s been targeted by the abortion giant Planned Parenthood.

My mother’s choice to leave her abortion appointment saved my life, while Tonya’s decision to abort resulted in the untimely loss of her life and the life of her unborn baby. The second-trimester dilation and evacuation (D&E) she underwent is a surgical abortion procedure used to terminate a pregnancy after 16 weeks’ gestation. The fetus is literally dismembered with the doctor’s forceps, the skull is crushed and removed, the lining of the uterus is scraped, and the remaining fetal tissue is sucked out of the uterus.

Truly, abortion claims many victims. Photo credit: DrGBB on Flickr

Did Tonya have any idea that a seemingly “safe” procedure would cost her so much? Her fiancé is left without a bride, her identical twin sister is missing her “other half,” and her son will grow up without his mother. I doubt that Tonya had a full picture of what her “choice” could entail. I identify with her while I ache for the millions of other black women who believe that Planned Parenthood is an organization worth trusting.

When the news of Trayvon Martin’s death hit the airwaves, the public responded with passion. Cries for justice and accusations of racism came from the NAACP, Jesse Jackson, and Al Sharpton. Thousands marched in New York, Florida, and D.C., and throughout the country. People of various ages and races took pictures of themselves wearing hoodies along with the words ” I am Trayvon Martin.” Pastors urged their congregations to wear hoodies to church in an act of solidarity with Trayvon. President Obama commented on the death, saying, “If I had a son, he’d look like Trayvon.”

Jesse Jackson recently wrote an article for the Chicago Sun-Times on the Aurora, Colorado theater shooting entitled “Lax gun laws allow terrorism at home.” In his article on gun control, he shared a quote from a William Butler Yeats poem called “The Second Coming”:

[T]he ceremony of innocence is drowned; the best lack all conviction, while the worst are full of passionate intensity.

Jackson then asked,“ How many must die before ‘the best’ stand and speak?”

That is the same question I could ask him. In 1977, Jackson wrote:

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

Jackson, Sharpton, and the NAACP have remained silent over Tonya’s death. Although Tonya Reaves lived in same city our president hails from, he hasn’t publicly mentioned her name. Instead, President Obama took time to talk about the organization whose possible negligence likely caused her death. In a recent gathering at the Oregon Convention Center, Obama said:

Mr. Romney wants to get rid of funding for Planned Parenthood. I think that is a bad idea. … I’ve got two daughters. I want them to control their own health care choices. We’re not going backwards, we’re going forwards.

What does going forward mean, Mr. President? More women butchered from “safe” abortions? Taxpayer dollars being used to fund a corrupt organization? If going forward equals furthering support to Planned Parenthood, I’d rather be left behind.

Thankfully, the true “best” are standing up. There is a company of black leaders who are raising their voices in the midst of this tragedy. Here are a few words from my personal friends and pro-life advocates:

Abortion is the leading cause of death among Blacks and once again Planned Parenthood, the nation’s largest abortion provider, is involved in the death our women and children. No one has the right to take the life of an innocent human being. It’s time Planned Parenthood be held accountable for the loss of life in its abortion dens. – Walter B. Hoye II, Founder & President, Issues4Life Foundation.”

Surely the African-American community will wake up and stop giving Planned Parenthood a pass after seeing Tonya Reaves killed and her unborn baby butchered at their hands. – Rev. Arnold Culbreath, Director of Urban Outreach for Protecting Black Life

We pray this tragedy awakens the collective conscience of Black America to a wretched, unregulated industry that has profited from the deaths of children and deliberate miseducation of young women. – Dean Nelson, Chairman, Frederick Douglass Foundation.

Tonya Reaves [sic] death is not about a political agenda. This is about the healthcare disparities Planned Parenthood and other abortion providers have long inflicted upon Black women all across America. This is about the failure of an organization that holds itself out as a champion of women, to champion reasonable medical care standards for women of color. – Catherine Davis, Founder and President of the Restoration Project

The battle for protecting black lives begins in the womb. Planned Parenthood is not a friend to the black community. I along with other leaders from the National Black Pro-life Coalition express our heartfelt sympathy to the family and friends of Tonya Reaves.

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