Pro-Life News Briefs: Terri Schiavo Update, China Abortion Law, Spain, Iowa

National   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Dec 26, 2005   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

Pro-Life News Briefs: Terri Schiavo Update, China Abortion Law, Spain, Iowa Email this article
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by Steven Ertelt Editor
December 26, 2005

While Ex-Husband Enters Politics, Terri Schiavo’s Family Helps Disabled
Clearwater, FL ( —
While her former husband enters the world of politics, Terri Schiavo’s parents and family are working to help disabled patients like Terri have their right to live protected by law. Michael Schiavo recently announced the creation of a political action committee to target pro-life lawmakers who sided with Terri and her family to allow her to stay live and get medical help. However, Bob and Mary Schindler, Terri’s parents, and her brother and sister are working to promote a foundation to help others. Terri’s brother Bobby resigned from his position as a teacher at a Catholic high school in Tampa to work with the foundation full time. "I think this foundation and at least trying to help others and staying involved in this fight is therapeutic and helpful, and it’s something that Terri would be very happy we’re doing," he said recently. "Our family said from the beginning that we just wanted to bring Terri home and care for her," Bobby Schindler told the Associated Press. He wants to help other families in similar situations be able to care for their loved ones. The Schindler family is working on a book that will be released in March. Michael also has a book release planned for around the same time, which will be the one year anniversary of Terri Schiavo’s euthanasia death.

China Approves Law Targeting Sex-Selection Abortions, Infanticides
Beijing, China ( —
The Chinese government has approved a new law aimed at curbing the use of technologies such as ultrasounds to identify the sex of an unborn child. Officials want to curtail the use of ultrasounds for abortions of female unborn children. Many Chinese rely on sex-selecton abortions to ensure the birth of a boy since the government only allows one child. Chinese cultural has long favored boys over girls and some newborn girls become the victims of infanticide as well. The new law puts in place fines and a three year prison term for helping detect the sex of the baby before birth. The law is also intended to correct the growing gender imbalance that has produced a society of many more men compared with women. That has resulted in huge increases in prostitution and sex trafficking of women. The Chinese population control policy of allowing only one child per family was put in place more than 20 years ago. "The revision is aimed to prevent the selection of a child’s gender when not conducted for medical purposes," An Jian, a member of China’s parliament told Reuters.

Abortions In Spain Up 73 Percent Over Last Ten Years
Madrid, Spain ( —
The number of abortions in Spain has increased 73 percent over the last decade according to a new report released Monday by the government’s Health Ministry. The information about abortions from 1995 to 2004 shows abortions on teenagers from 15 to 19 has increased at the largest rate. In fact, the abortion rate for older teenage girls rose 10 percent from 2003-2004 alone. Margarita Delgado, a statistician at the Higher Scientific Research Center, said the figures show sex education is "failing among adolescents." "Birth control measures have not sunk in sufficiently, but the rise in abortions is not just an issue for adolescents but for other age groups, and that is troubling." Despite the rise in abortions the ruling Socialist government wants to make abortion easier to obtain. Current Spanish law allows abortions in most cases but women must obtain a doctor’s permission for them. A measure the government plans to support in 2006 would legalize all abortions for any reasons up to the 12th week of pregnancy. The new figures show 61 percent of the 85,000 abortions in Spain annually take place in the first eight weeks of pregnancy and 96 percent were indicated as necessary for the woman’s mental or physical health to meet current law. Most abortions took place in Madrid.

Iowa Safe Haven Law for Newborns Lacks State Funding
Des Moines, IA ( —
Laws to help protect newborns from infanticide are working in most other states because money has been spent to promote and advertise the safe haven laws to young mothers and couples who might use it. Some states like Florida has spent as much as $500,000 to promote the law. That’s not the case in Iowa. "We have zero dollars set aside to publicize this law," Roger Munns, spokesman for the Iowa Department of Human Services, told the Associated Press. "The money just isn’t there." Forty-six states have laws like Iowa’s that allow newborns to be surrendered to hospitals, fire stations or other places. Gov. Tom Vilsack’s office says the law has been advertised in doctor’s offices and on the state web site, but some say they don’t want it advertised further. Rep. Lance Horbach, a Republican, told AP that he worried about encouraging young parents to view abandoning a newborn as their first option rather than a last resort. At least 15 infants have been found dead after being abandoned in Iowa since 1990. Six babies have been surrendered since the law was adopted and all have been adopted.