Abortion

Abortion Fight 2

In 1973 Roe v. Wade became a landmark case when the Supreme Court ruled that abortion was legal in the first trimester of a pregnancy. Ever since that decision there have been heated debates by the pro choice camp and the pro life camp. Most of us have deep convictions about abortion. Abortion has escalated all the way to partial birth abortions. Some mothers have tried to abort babies that survived. There are many websites and stories where survivors of attempted abortion tell their stories. Here are just a few:

http://www.teenbreaks.com/abortion/abortionsurvivors.cfm , http://www.foxnews.com/opinion/2017/01/27/my-mother-tried-to-abort-me-survived.html theabortionsurvivors.com

Ironically, the mother of  “Jane Roe” in the Roe v. Wade case wanted to abort her. She went so far as to ask a midwife to perform the abortion, but the midwife refused stating that “Roe’s” mother was too far along in her pregnancy.  Also ironic is the fact that while “Jane Roe” was an adamant supporter of abortion and stated she wanted an abortion, she herself never had an abortion under the name of “Jane Roe.”

In the days prior to “legalized” abortion, there were still abortions. They were performed by doctors and midwives. Women also induced their own abortions with medicines and herbs. Unfortunately there were also some crazy people that would use horrendous methods to try to induce abortions which often caused harm or death to both mother and baby. The general guideline was that abortions were never to be done after the “quickening.” “Quickening is a Shaker term and it meant the baby was moving in the mother’s womb on its own and the mother could feel movement (usually at 16-25 weeks gestation). Movement signaled life. With the modern technology of ultra sound we now know that movement happens much sooner than when a mother feels the baby moving (6 to 8 weeks gestation)-often before a woman even realizes she’s pregnant.

I, personally, am pro life. I do not believe in abortion for any reason. I am not heartless and I understand there may be situations where rape was involved. While rape is not a woman’s fault, neither is conception a baby’s fault. I do not believe that a woman’s life is more valuable than a baby’s life. I do believe that life begins at conception and I am a supporter of adoption and other assistance programs to help with unplanned pregnancies. There are numerous options today to help women and babies that didn’t use to exist. Women can speak for themselves, but an unborn baby can’t speak (yet). Being unable to speak in the womb doesn’t make a life less valuable.

Reagon T shirt

While I am in the pro life camp, there are things happening in the name of “pro life” that definitely should not be happening. Blowing up abortion clinics and/or shooting abortionists are just as deadly as the abortions these extremists are trying to prevent. The hatred and callousness of some claiming to be pro life isn’t helpful to anyone. I believe there should be compassion and I would never condemn a person who had already had an abortion, even though I don’t agree with the decision to do so. Condemnation is the last thing these women need and they can’t take back their actions so condemnation serves no useful purpose.

Despite my own position, I’ve tried to be fair to this subject with the library materials available. Interestingly, I started with the book, I Am Roe: My Life, Roe v. Wade, and Freedom of Choice by Norma McCorvey  with Andy Meisler. I judged this book by its cover. I didn’t think I would like it. Parts of it have been very difficult for me to read.

I am Roe

Norma McCorvey is the “Roe” in Roe v. Wade. She tells her own story in her own words. I have to say that this book is a good story and has a conversational feel to it. The story and life of Norma McCorvey is quite interesting.

Norma came from a poor family and suffered abuse at the hands of her alcoholic mother. When home life became too much for her, Norma took things into her own hands and ran away from her family. Norma committed a robbery at a young age to get money to run away. Eventually she was caught and landed in the juvenile justice system.  Later Norma married at the age of 16 and had a child. Norma became an alcoholic herself and was tricked by her own mother into giving her child up for adoption. Norma’s second child was voluntarily given up for adoption and when Norma became pregnant a third time, she sought to have an abortion claiming that she had been raped.  At the time Norma lived in the state of Texas which supposedly had antiabortion laws with an exemption for cases of rape. There was, however,  no evidence of any kind that Norma had been raped. Due to the lack of evidence of rape, Texas denied Norma’s request for an abortion.  At this point, Norma attempted to have an illegal abortion but the state had shut down abortion clinics. It was during this time that Norma was referred to activist attorneys who were wanting to connect with women wishing to have abortions. They took Norma’s case which took three years to make it to the Supreme Court. Norma never attended a single trial and in the meantime the baby she was trying to abort was born and given up for adoption. The attorney’s in the case had Norma sign an affidavit as a pregnant woman seeking an abortion and then never even talked to Norma again until three years later when they called to congratulate her on winning the case. Norma stated that she felt used.

Norma became a somewhat unwilling poster child for the pro abortion movement. She didn’t fit in well with the so called women’s libbers and they didn’t care much for her either. However because her case, the now famous Roe v Wade, became so high profile the pro abortion movement was more or less stuck with Norma. Norma worked for years as a spokesperson for the pro abortion camp and she also was an abortion clinic worker. Over the decades following Norma did abort at least one baby.

Norma knew many of the abortion protesters in her area and actually became friends with some of them even though they didn’t agree on abortion issues. Norma knew all the arguments about abortion both for and against although she was still an avid abortion supporter. Then one day she was sitting in a clinic looking at pictures of the development of a fetus. Suddenly she began to make out features like eyes and tiny little limbs. She kept staring at the pictures and without prompting from anyone, Norma realized she wasn’t just looking at cell clusters, she was actually seeing an unborn baby! In that moment Norma’s life changed for ever.

Norma became a Christian and totally switched camps. Norma became one of the most famous anti abortion protesters in the world. She spent the rest of her life trying to undo Roe v Wade.  In her book Won by Love Norma McCorvery  (with Gary Thomas) explains her reasons for her dramatic about face.

Won by Love

Norma spoke out against the “immoral machinations” of the abortion industry. She tells how she witnessed the destruction of countless human lives through abortion and how she herself felt the misery of grief and despair of so many women who chose to end their pregnancies. Seeing death constantly in abortion clinics, Norma “broke.”

Norma quit work at the abortion clinic and was now the poster child for the anti abortion camp aka the pro life movement. Norma admitted publicly that she did not become pregnant with her third child by rape. She said she had made the story up to try to get around the Texas anti abortion laws. Norma publicly contrasted the hatred and backstabbing she had felt while working for the pro abortion people (who, she said, made her feel “like dirt”) with the positivity and love she felt when she switched sides.  She claimed she felt more acceptance and  love in the first two weeks of reversing her position than she did in all the decades of working with pro abortionists.

There are many, many details of the contrasts between Norma’s initial pro abortion life and her life after she became an advocate for pro life. I urge all of you to at least read both of these books so that you will get a good balance of both sides of the issue.

There were other books I checked out but do not have time to comment on in one post. I ask all of you to look honestly at both sides of the issue. A couple other books I checked out were:

 Pro Reclaiming Abortion Rights   The Hand of God

Do you believe that abortion is something that should–or even can–be legislated? Do you look at abortion more as an individual or a societal issue?

 

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Firefighters

Two fire fighters and flames

Fighting fires is not something that the majority of us are probably thinking about most of the time. However, should we ever have a fire, we would want firefighters to respond quickly and save people, animals, and anything else they can. Fortunately most fire fighters ARE constantly thinking about fire and preparing for fire and other emergencies. These first responders  have my utmost respect.

First responders often run into buildings and emergency situations when everyone else is trying to run out. They are brave, courageous, and often fearless. They show up and get dangerous jobs done while looking out for everyone’s safety. When they aren’t fighting fires they are preparing for them through educational programs for the public as well as going through on the job training.

I can not say enough good about firefighters in general, but especially about our own local fire department here in Fulton County, Indiana. I am very proud to live in a community where emergency services such as firefighting are not taken for granted and where these men and women are highly respected. This community puts their money into maintaining such services. Although I don’t know the exact dates when this all happened,  our firefighters were in need of a larger, more modern fire house. This is what the old fire house looks like:

Old Firehouse Rochester

This building now houses some offices on the lower levels and the top floor is now a dance studio owned by another Fulton County Public Library employee.

The new fire house looks like this:

New Firehouse Rochester

Since the new firehouse was built, the community continues to provide equipment for our local firefighting heroes. A new ladder  truck and a pumper truck have been purchased as well as updated communication devices and masks among other things. This is a service that is important to keep up to date and is fully backed by the community.

This is a picture of just some of the things firefighters need:

Firefighter Priceless

At the risk of sounding like a commercial, I ask all of you to please support you local firefighters.

Here is a picture printed by our local newspaper, The Sentinel, of some of our firefighters at work:

Local Firefighters (Sentinel)

In 3000 Degrees: the True Story of a Deadly Fire and the Men who Fought It by Sean Flynn, the author describes several firefighters in their everyday life and the reasons they had for becoming firefighters. The story describes deadly fires that these brave men have fought. Their bravery and professionalism is truly amazing. These people put their lives on the line every single day for people they don’t even know. Some have paid the ultimate price.  I don’t want to give too much away so I will just say that this book is both entertaining and eye opening. I would recommend it.

3000 degrees

Another interesting book is Firefighters: Their Lives in Their Own Words by Dennis Smith. In this book male and female firefighters tell their own stories and why they chose to do what they do. The book covers various fire fighting scenarios such as building fires, forest fires, and emergency rescues.

Firefighters by Dennis Smith

Though firefighters are obviously very important, the best way to fight fires is to prevent them in the first place. Your family needs to have a fire safety plan.  If you have prepared your family and your pets, this could be as simple as knowing escape routes from all areas of your home and grabbing your Bug Out Bag (BOB). If you are unsure what a BOB is or what should be in it, you can learn about BOBs and pet BOBs in my post about Natural Disasters.  Every member of your family will need to know where to meet after escaping.

As part of your preparation, you can do a home inspection and make changes as necessary. This is an example of a basic checklist to help you get started:

Live Safe

You will need to have some basic safety equipment located strategically in your home. You need to have fire extinguishers and know how to use them. It is possible that you need different types of extinguishers for different areas of your home.

fiire extinguishers

If you have two or more stories in your home, you should have an emergency escape ladder. Your ladder should be stored inside in an accessible place near a window. you may need more than one ladder depending on the size of your home. Practice with your ladder before you need it and teach children how to responsibly use the ladder.

Escape Ladder

You should have smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors placed strategically throughout your home.

Combination Alarm

In Fulton County you can obtain a free smoke detector from the fire house. Not long ago local fire fighters walked our streets and knocked on doors asking if people needed smoke detectors. If the people said they needed them, the firefighters even installed them for free. I believe there would be a similar type of arrangement in other areas of the country. Even if you have to buy smoke detectors and/or carbon monoxide detectors, this would be money well spent and could save your life and the lives of your family members.

You should also have a first aid kit readily available. It’s not a bad idea to have several first aid kits located in different areas of your home and you will definitely want to have some basic first aid supplies stored in your BOB.  It also might be practical to have some fire blankets.First aid and Fire Blanket Kit

There should be some considerations for the outside of your home as well.  If a fire should start on a neighboring property, you want to try to prevent if from spreading to your own home. There are some simple things you can do to help prevent such a problem as the infographic below shows.

Outside Fire Defense

It is also a good idea to have some sort of a sticker, decal, or static cling notification of pets living in your home. If you are not home and a fire breaks out, firefighters or other emergency personnel would know to look for and try to save your pets. The best decals will tell the number and type of animals in the house, have the pets’ names, your name and contact information for how you can be reached.

Pet Alert

Pet Alert 2

These types of stickers can be ordered or you could easily make your own with your computer and put pictures on them of your actual animals along with the other necessary information.

A few fire related DVDs/BluRays that you may want to check out are:

Backdraft Chicago Fire

Have you ever had a home fire? Do you have an emergency fire plan for your family? Will you be creating a plan?