Skip to comments.Pro-Life Conferees Say Research on Abortion Risk Ignored
Posted on 05/28/2002 12:38:48 PM PDT by nickcarraway
Our Dark Ages
Pro-Life Conferees Say Research on Abortion Risk Ignored
By Fred Martinez
The Global Family Life conference at the Santa Clara Marriott was not well received by Bay Area media who either ignored it, or responded with skepticism at the claims of the pro-life conferees. The speakers responded by blasting the media both for its ignorance of medical research and for misrepresenting the scandals in the Church. The conference ran from April 3 through April 7 across the street from Our Lady of Peace in Santa Clara and featured 26 pro-life leaders from around the world.
Steve Mosher, head of the Virginia-based Population Research Institute, hosted the conference. He was particularly irked by the coverage from San Francisco Channel 5 reporter, Sean Comey. Comey said he was "disappointed" because PRI failed to show him a video tape which demonstrated that there are forced abortions in China. Comey said he had doubts about the existence of the tape.
Coney said, "They kept saying it's somewhere else. We can't get a hold of it. It's kind of like my dog eats my homework. It disappeared and I never got to see it," Comey said, "I don't know if in fact it exists. That was one of the reasons we came because that was one of the things they were talking about. Whether they just don't have their act together and lost it or it took off with somebody. Or they ever had it in the first place."
Steve Mosher, when asked about the tape, contended that the reporter had not done his homework. "Anyone can look this up at the congressional records. We showed it at the U.S. Senate hearings chaired by Barbara Boxer. By the end of the meeting Boxer was on the defensive because of the evidence. The transcript can be downloaded at our Internet site," Mosher said, "I've shown this thing everywhere. This is blatant media bias. The other side is taken at their word and we are not. They don't use the same standard for both sides. The headline in the KPIX newscast was "Anti-abortion meeting." We are a pro-life, pro-family conference."
Chris Kahlenborn, M.D., and others at the conference who presented scientific evidence that breast cancer is linked to abortion were also not believed by the San Francisco reporter. "They are, also, talking about trying to link what they say are scientific studies that associated an increased risk of breast cancer to abortion," Comey said, "Now, I've talked to supporters of abortions rights who say there is really no credible medical evidence for that."
When asked about Comey's assertions, Dr. Kahlenborn said, "Currently there are 28 out of 37 studies that show induced abortion increases the risk of breast cancer. 13 out of 15 of those are done in the United States. And 13 out of 15 of those are positive. So the risk of an abortion to develop beast cancer is 50 percent if it's your first baby. And if you're under 18 it goes to 150 percent. If you're under 18 and your baby is more than nine weeks old it goes up to 800 percent." According to Kahlenborn, the media is engaging in a "blackout" of scientific studies that associated an increased risk of breast cancer to abortion. He said, "The problem is that National Cancer Institute, the whole National Institute of Health, and the American Cancer Society will not present this research. But, if you go to the website www.polycarp.org, we have a bar graph that shows the research. It is completely black and white. Anybody can look that up and use it for court cases if they wish to. It's very strong."
Other speakers at the conference responded that the risks are uncontestable. They said a new campaign to sue abortionists for not giving prior notice of the risks is a needed solution. "I think if people get angry enough and start asking their doctors as well as considering lawsuits. Then we will start to hear about it. They are not going to start hearing the truth unless they start going to the legal system," Kahlenborn said, "As soon as there comes a woman who has breast cancer who has had an abortion and takes it to court. She's got a very strong case. The problem is a lot of young women when they do get breast cancer die from it so quickly -- because it's so aggressive when you're young -- they might not make it to court."
California resident Sandra Duffy, who lives in Sacramento, has suffered cancer twice, and her mother died of cancer. She said, "We all know first-hand what it means to go through these experiences. I want to do what I can to protect others from tragedies that can be avoided simply by having truthful information." Duffy is a plaintiff in a lawsuit filed last August 15 against Planned Parenthood of San Diego and Riverside counties. The suit says that Planned Parenthood ignores abortion-related complications including breast cancer and in some cases death while it touts the safety of abortion. Patrick Gillen, the Thomas Moore Law Center's lead attorney representing Duffy in the case, said, "Our clients want all women to have free access to truthful and accurate information they need to make an informed choice."
"The failure to stop an abortion procedure on request, or even depriving women of their right to full information, can be construed as a denial of a woman's freedom of access to reproductive health," said Mosher. "We're working with these attorneys to inform more and more Americans of their rights. It's time America does an 'about face' on the abortion industry. Women deserve genuine health and human rights, not violations so routinely committed by the abortion industry."
Population Research Institute speakers said they are carrying out wide-ranging field research among Catholic populations in the developing world. PRI has found population control is frequently used to "subdue" Catholic populations at the expense of basic aid and economic development.
"We're building on our reputation and relationship with strong pro-life members of congress and Catholic leaders abroad to support human rights and to defend the Catholic faith and the rights of Catholic families throughout the world," Mosher said.
The issue of media bias resonated among both speakers and conferees at the conference. Guy Sudano, a composer and singer who is a parishioner at Our Lady of Peace in Santa Clara where PRI had its youth conference, asserted that the media is two-faced. He said that the media has many sex abusers and it doesn't take responsibility for its part in creating sex abuse. He said, "The media institution that is entertainment, sports and news information would love to crucify the Church for its Judas,'" Sudano said, "But when it comes to discussing the child abusers in their own ranks, Michael Jackson, Paula Poundstone and Marv Albert, there is no problem in cheering on their heroes, maintaining their careers and paychecks. The media will never take any blame for the sexual and social chaos they have created."
Robert Soto, a youth advocate in Santa Clara County and former student body president of Cal State Bakersfield, said," If they bring the left-wing liberal bias, then they get their story published. I remember the media was publicizing that Jesse Jackson was a coalition builder for all minority groups," Soto said, " Yet when he came to my college, he ignored every Mexican and Latino when they tried to get his attention. But, when Blacks sought his attention he welcomed them and shook their hands."
Mosher believes that the media is misrepresenting and the sexual scandals in the Church. Mosher contends that the present church crisis is not about pedophilia, but about homosexuality. "It is only a tiny fraction of the priesthood, which has ever been guilty of this kind of indiscretion. The vast majority is engaging in homosexual acts with young men after the age of puberty. True pedophilia is very rare. In Boston we had one case of pedophilia," Mosher said, "All the other cases involve adolescent males. This is not pedophilia if it is past puberty. These are priests who are acting out on homosexual impulses-and preying on adolescent young men. So you have to understand that is why the Vatican is saying homosexuals shouldn't be ordained into the priesthood."
Mosher continued, "We need to reach out to people of homosexual inclination with the same message of the gospel that I was reached with when I was a sinner. I don't claim any moral superiority here. I think all grave sins are potentially fatal to the soul. But I was reached by my wife and children," Mosher said, "I think when you become a member of a sub-culture. It's very difficult to reach you. We need to reach people like that with a message of that will not only save their soul, but with the scourge of AIDS as well save their lives." Mosher related that this issue was of particular concern to him because he has a sister who after a bad marriage went to San Francisco and became part of the lesbian community. He said, " We are still praying for her today."
Another speaker at the conference, Alice von Hildebrand, had a stern message for the U.S. bishops in her talk. She said, "Go on your knees and pray and make sacrifices and ask God for the gift of faith for realizing in many ways you have failed your sheep."
When Steve Mosher was asked what message he would give the American bishops if he were given the opportunity. He said his message would be "that there is no priest shortage in dioceses, which are lead by bishops who preach the fullness of the truths of the Catholic faith. We have actually done studies in those dioceses where there is a willingness -- a courageous willingness -- to speak about the biblical/moral issues of our day. To speak about pre-marital sex and why its wrong. To speak about the need to practice chastity both before and after marriage, to speak about the fact that homosexuality is a grave sin," Mosher said, "Those bishops who are preaching on this issues have no shortage of young men who are brought by the Holy Spirit to them. To join them in their teaching ministry."
By the end of the conference on April 7, Scott Weinberg, the media director for the Population Research Institute said that, " KPIX did finally get the tape. They gave us some pretty good news coverage."