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Peace & Life Connections Index

#413 Poor People's Campaign, Ireland Vote

Poor People’s Campaign There’s a movement to revive Martin Luther King’s Poor People’s Campaign again after 50 years; see this excellent PBS NewsHour segment of May 30. It addresses connected issues: poverty, racism, and militarism. This time, they’re adding environmental degradation. We encourage people to participate in their own local activities. But we also note they have a huge blind spot in their principles:

7. We aim to shift the distorted moral narrative often promoted by religious extremists in the nation from issues like prayer in school, abortion, and gun rights to one that is concerned with how our society treats the poor, those on the margins, the least of these, LGBTQIA folks, workers, immigrants, the disabled and the sick; equality and representation under the law; and the desire for peace, love and harmony within and among nations.

We need more consistent-lifers to explain to those who think this way that abortion belongs in the category of how our society treats “those on the margins,” along with being a form of violence connected to poverty, racism, and war.

Around the Web

Live Action has excellent coverage of our campaign, Grassroots Defunding: Finding Alternatives to Planned Parenthood: “New website helps pro-lifers direct women to alternatives to Planned Parenthood,” by Susan Michelle-Hanson, May 30, 2018. ​​

In a podcast/audio interview, CLN endorser Destiny Herndon-De La Rosa discusses the Consistent Life Ethic (CLE) multiple times. The main points of the interview are secular pro-life arguments and feminist reasoning. Destiny discusses the CLE as a way of showing how progressive/liberal pro-choicers are inconsistent when standing for justice and dignity of the oppressed yet justify abortion.

Mourning Ireland's Vote Ireland's constitutional Amendment 8 protecting unborn children passed overwhelmingly in 1983, and protected a generation of people who have now voted in a higher proportion than other age groups against such protections - they're now safely born themselves. How issues are framed matters, and Irish government officials and the media used the normal euphemisms. While there are only a few abortion referendums to draw lessons from, we do know that in two 1972 US state referendums, opponents of legalization used consistent-life reasoning relating abortion to war (North Dakota) or the death penalty (Michigan). These had the desired result of a solid "no" vote.

Latest CLN Blog Post: Conscientious Objectors Are medical personnel who are conscientious objectors to participating in abortions the same kind of people as draftees who are conscientious objectors to war? Obviously, we think so. This week’s post is another excerpt from Peace Psychology Perspectives on Abortion, a book which deliberately presents differing viewpoints, so the case against a war/abortion similarity is presented, and then the case for it, in Conscientious Objectors. Names and photos of a few of the famous cases are included.

Quotation of the Week Aimee Murphy A Path Forward for Life: Reflections on Ireland's Abortion Referendum May 30, 2018

What I have learned from Ireland's "No" campaign has been caught in short glimpses. I saw that inauthenticity and inconsistency can wound a movement for decades, as I saw the "Yes" campaign tie the pro-life cause to the burdensome baggage of the scandal and abuse of the Catholic Church in Ireland. If the Church did not have such a history of neglecting a human-centered philosophy, I do not think the "Yes" campaign would have thrived as they did. This points to a need I have seen in the pro-life movement (even here in the States): we must be authentic, we must be consistent, we must be human-centered.

Responses/News tips/Questions to share are all welcome.

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