Statement of RI Catholic Conference – Proposed Legislation on Abortion
Civilized societies are distinguished by the protections they afford their weakest and most vulnerable members, and our government acts its noblest when it speaks for those who have no voice. The Church’s opposition to abortion is found in the principle that each and every human life has inherent dignity, and thus must be treated with the respect due to a human person. This is the foundation for the Church’s social doctrine, including its teachings on war, the use of capital punishment, euthanasia, health care, poverty and immigration.
Recently the immoral and unethical practices of Planned Parenthood have been exposed in various news outlets. Their alleged trafficking in fetal body parts for profit remains under investigation in the U.S. Congress. Abby Johnson, the author of Unplanned states: “Planned Parenthood has been misleading Congress and American taxpayers for many years. I know — I was part of the deception. For eight years I worked at a Planned Parenthood clinic in Texas, and for two of those years I was the clinic’s director.”
In 2013, America saw the face in the abortion industry during the trial of former Philadelphia abortionist Kermit Gosnell, who was convicted of numerous crimes, including murdering three infants born alive during attempted abortion procedures. The grand jury report on Gosnell states that “he regularly and illegally delivered live, viable babies in the third trimester of pregnancy, and then murdered these newborns by severing their spinal cords with scissors.” Thankfully, Kermit Gosnell is serving a sentence of life imprisonment and no longer endangers women and infants.
This proposed legislation is a radical attempt to remove all state regulation from the unethical and questionable practices of abortion providers such as Planned Parenthood and the Kermit Gosnells of the Ocean State. Removing this regulation by the state disregards the health and safety of thousands of women and children in Rhode Island.
Further, this proposed legislation codifies in RI State Law the violent attack upon the life and dignity of every unborn child. Such a grave moral evil must always be rejected by people of good will especially by the elected leaders of our state.
The RI Catholic Conference stands opposed to the proposed legislation that radically changes RI State Law to allow for unregulated and unrestricted abortion on demand. This extremist legislation is a direct attack upon defenseless and innocent human life and allows the abortion industry to be left unregulated and unrestricted. Human life must be protected and respected in the law at every stage, most especially from the moment of conception.
We remind the members of the RI General Assembly of the wisdom of Pope Francis who states: “It is necessary to reaffirm our solid opposition to any direct offense against life, especially when innocent and defenseless, and the unborn child in its mother’s womb is the quintessence of innocence. Let us remember the words of Vatican Council II: ‘Therefore from the moment of its conception, life must be guarded with the greatest care while abortion and infanticide are unspeakable crimes.'” (April 11, 2014, Pope Francis Speech to the Italian Movement for Life.) We urge the members of the RI General Assembly to reject this legislation and this attack upon innocent human life.
The Very Rev. Bernard A. Healey
LEARN MORE – Tell Your State Rep “NO’” on House Bill No 5343