Pennsylvania Pro-Life Covention Focuses on RU 486 Death

State   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Sep 29, 2003   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

Pennsylvania Pro-Life Convention Focuses on RU 486 Death

by Maria Gallagher Staff Writer
September 29, 2003

Scranton, PA ( — Radio talk show host Janet Parshall is decrying the use of the abortion pill RU-486 in the wake of the death of a California teenager who apparently lost her life as a result of taking the controversial drug.

"I can’t think of anything more anti-woman than RU-486," Parshall told attendees at the 2003 Pennsylvania Pro-Life Convention, which was held in Scranton, Pennsylvania this past weekend.

Parshall said that RU-486 won approval from the Food and Drug Administration because, in her words, drug companies and doctors who perform abortions "have deep pockets," meaning that they have substantial financial resources to influence public policy.

Last week, a funeral was held for Holly Patterson, an 18-year-old girl who died after taking RU-486 to end her pregnancy. The young woman received the drug from an affiliate of Planned Parenthood, the nation’s biggest abortion operation.

Parshall noted that the Clinton Administration ignored the results of European trials of the drug, which showed that it could have deadly side-effects. In addition, Parshall pointed out that use of RU-486 can be psychologically traumatizing for a woman because it requires her to examine the body of her dead baby after the child has been expelled from the uterus.

The talk show host, whose radio program "Janet Parshall’s America" is syndicated nationwide, said that the "sanctity of human life is the definitive issue in America." She added that those who work to defend the rights of innocent human beings must battle "a doctrine of death."

Also, Parshall praised President George W. Bush for promising to sign a ban on partial-birth abortions, a practice in which an unborn child is killed in the process of being born. She accused former President Bill Clinton, who supports abortion, of lying to the American people when he claimed that partial-birth abortion was being used to save women’s lives.

Parshall’s address came during a banquet which honored nationally-known abstinence educator Molly Kelly for her work in promoting chastity among teenagers. Kelly received a lifetime achievement award from the Pennsylvania Pro-Life Federation, the convention’s sponsor. The Federation, which is the largest pro-life organization in Pennsylvania, is an affiliate of National Right to Life.

The convention attracted more than 700 people — "the largest crowd in 25 years of pro-life conventions in Pennsylvania," according to the group’s president, Susan Rogacs. Federation officials credited the large turnout, in part, to the sharp increase in people who identify themselves as pro-life.

Still, Pennsylvania has become an abortion battleground in the past year.

Steve Brigham, who had to relinquish his Pennsylvania medical license because of his questionable medical practices, re-opened an abortion center in State College earlier this year and opened a new abortion business earlier this month in Erie.

The opening of Brigham’s American Women’s Services marks the first time abortions have been performed in Erie in more than 20 years.

While abortion rates have been going down nationwide, they have been inching upward in Pennsylvania, although they remain far below the levels seen in the late ’80s and early ’90s.

Workshop presenters at the convention included Carol Tobias, Laura Echevarria, Randall O’Bannon, and Ernie Ohlhoff of National Right to Life; Dr. Angela Lanfranchi, the co-founder of the Breast Cancer Prevention Institute and an expert on the abortion-breast cancer link; and euthanasia expert Lori Kehoe of New York Right to Life, among others.

The Federation plans to hold its next convention in 2005 in Valley Forge, Pennsylvania, near Philadelphia.

Related web sites:
Pennsylvania Pro-Life Federation –