|Please contact Governor Ivey ASAP and ask her to protect the freedom of religion in Alabama, her churches and their members. Ask her to sign The Child Placing Agency Inclusion Act (HB24/SB145) without any executive amendment and without delay! To contact the Governor’s office, call: 1-334-242-7100 AND email by going to: governor.Alabama.gov/contact.
This act protects church and religious operated state-licensed adoption agencies from being required to make same sex adoption placements in violation of their religious beliefs based on scriptural marriage. With the 2015 Obergefell SCOTUS opinion legalizing same sex marriage, regulations are expected requiring same sex marriage placements. Already in Massachusetts, Illinois, Washington, DC and San Francisco, Christian adoption agencies have closed.
Adoption is an important alternative to abortion. We cannot afford the closing down of 30% of Alabama adoptions done by the affected agencies.
The Human Rights campaign, a heavily financed LGBTQ lobbying organization, abortion interests and others have opposed these bills, but they passed both houses with large margins. Now, we are told that Google, AT&T and Apple are pressuring Governor Ivey to add the amendment. Please let our new Governor know that we need her to stand with the Alabama Christian Community and sign the act.
This issue is about more than protecting innocent life; it is about the very essence of religious freedom. In committee, Christians were said to be intolerant and discriminatory. Our religious beliefs were expected to be secondary to the desires of homosexuals.
This is our first confrontation in Alabama with the gay rights agenda. If we do not stand firm now, we will face increased opposition. Those organizations that oppose us because of what we believe, will coalesce; and we will find we have little or no voice in protecting our values. Large corporations, gay rights advocates, abortion interests, gambling interests, and you name it, will be telling us how to live. Our sincerely held religious beliefs dictate against what they want. We must act now to protect our rights for ourselves and our posterity. We must not allow those who advocate unhealthy lifestyles to discriminate against us and against Christian ministries, nor advance their agenda at the expense of vulnerable youth and the whole of society.
We are indebted to Eric Johnston of Southeast Law Institute for much of the foregoing explanation.
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Eagle Forum of Alabama
4200 Stone River Circle
Birmingham, Alabama 35213
|by Krissie Allen
In 1995, Pope John Paul II issued his widely acclaimed encyclical Evangelium Vitae (The Gospel of Life), warning Christians of an emerging “culture of death.” Pointing to various political, social, and cultural norms that offer a perverse idea of freedom that sacrifices the inherent value of life in favor of individuality, the encyclical affirms that the Gospel of Christ is indeed a Gospel of life. Christians are therefore called to resist the culture of death and embrace a culture that respects, protects and serves every life because “[o]nly in this direction will [one] find justice, development, true freedom, peace and happiness.”
At times the culture of death’s attack on life is easy to identify and thereby resist. (One need only ponder the struggle over abortion-rights or euthanasia to see the menacing culture of death at work.) Other times, however, its attack seems more insidious yet equally dangerous. And one of the most recent examples is Netflix’s most tweeted about show geared towards teens:13 Reasons Why.
Based on Jay Asher’s debut novel of the same name, the series tells the story behind the suicide of a young teenager named Hannah, and according to the show’s producer Selena Gomez, is intended to offer an “honest” view of suicide so it “should never be an option.”
Essentially, each of the 13 episodes reveals a new audiotape Hannah left behind and allows young viewers to progressively uncover (and essentially experience) the multiple mistreatments that led to her tragic decision. Viewers are accordingly lured, episode after episode, into witnessing just about every shocking teen trauma imaginable: Hannah’s homosexual kiss that becomes fodder for teen bullying, her witnessing of a friend’s rape, her own sexual assault and eventual rape, her failed attempt to receive help from a dismissive guidance counselor, and most disturbingly, her final hopeless and graphic act of slitting of her wrists in the bathtub.
Countless experts have already rung the alarm on the show and criticized its depiction of suicide as explicitly dangerous. Everyone from suicide prevention groups, mental health experts, educators, youth ministers, and even mainstream reviewers have warned that the series’ graphic images and sensational plot lines could potentially result in harm to young viewers who have previously dealt with these serious issues and could work to desensitize people to suicidal acts in general.
One initial take away from this controversy for Christians is that the culture of death is very much alive and willing to manipulate young people. It might feign concern for human tragedy and difficulty and might even claim to pursue justice and peace. Unwilling to acknowledge Christ’s love and His redemptive powers, however, its solutions always—always—fall short. Instead of offering hope, it offers despair. Instead of offering love, it offers wrath. Instead of offering faith, it offers skepticism or doubt. And instead of seeking to raise children of light, it seeks to raise children of woe.
The more imperative take away, however, is that our culture is in desperate need of hearing, seeing and experiencing the gospel of life. While Netflix and others of its ilk might choose to capitalize off of teen tragedy and continue to promote shows such as 13 Reasons Why, Christians have unyielding power to combat its influence by living Christ-centered lives that bear witness to Jesus, as The Ultimate Reason Why Not.
Wonderful news! All three pro-life bills that we have supported this legislative session passed the Senate today. They now head to the Governor’s desk for signature.
1. The Healthcare Rights of Conscience bill (religious freedom for healthcare providers who object to abortion, cloning, stem-cell research) by Rep. Arnold Mooney/Sen. Paul Sanford
2. Ban on Assisted Suicide bill by Representative Mack Butler/Senator Phil Williams
3. Right to Life Constitutional Amendment (a constitutional amendment to go on the ballot declaring that abortion is not a protected right in Alabama) by Rep. Matt Fridy/Sen. Phil
Thank you to everyone who turned out to lobby for life, and especially those legislators that voted to protect it!
HB24 Rep. Rich Wingo/SB145 Sen. Bill Hightower
HB95 Rep. Arnold Mooney/SB185 Sen. Paul Sanford
HB98 Rep. Matt Fridy
Contact your State Senator and State Representative now. Tell them you support the Assisted Suicide Ban Act HB96 (Rep. Mack Butler) and its companion bill SB198 (Sen. Phil Williams). House Information: (334) 242-7600 – Senate Information: (334) 242-7800, to voice your concerns with your legislators NOW!
Ask them to pass this legislation to insure that Alabama protects life until natural death. Alabama must not join the five states plus the District of Columbia who have already legalized assisted suicide and the other 21 states that are currently considering legislation to legalize “assisted suicide” which redefines the concept of medical good as never before. Our state has long supported its commitment to protect and preserve all human life at every stage. As this legislation states, the state has an interest in protecting vulnerable groups, such as the impoverished, the elderly, and disabled persons from abuse, neglect, and mistakes. The state also has an interest in protecting the integrity and ethics of the medical profession.
Assisted suicide laws clearly violate fundamental medical ethics. Without protections from assisted suicide in Alabama, the elderly, individuals with special needs, and the mentally ill will become targeted for assisted suicide as they have in other states. Alabama is one of the few states that currently has no statute directly addressing assisted suicide. The U. S. Supreme Court has upheld state bans on assisted suicide, and it is time for the Alabama Legislature to take action by passing the Assisted Suicide Ban Act.
In states that have legalized physician assisted suicide (PAS) there are few protections for those with mental health problems. Even in Oregon and California, where the law calls for counseling where the physician thinks the patient may have psychiatric or psychological disorder or depression, less than 4% of those who received a prescription were referred to counseling. Inadequate pain control was identified as a concern in only 1/4 to1/3 of the cases. If the reason for the decision is not physical, it is safe to assume that more patients should have received professional counseling other than from their physician. With such laws, there is nobody to hold the physician accountable. The laws allow too much latitude for physicians to rely on their own opinions in their practices. PHYSICIANS NEED TO HELP SUCH DISTURBED PATIENTS, NOT KILL THEM.
In a recent U. S. Senate hearing, Dr. G. Kevin Donovan, professor of pediatrics and director of clinical bioethics at Georgetown University, stated: “In medicine we know that what is permissible becomes habitual, and what is habitual becomes standard care, and what is [the] standard of care becomes obligatory.” We must protect life at all stages and remember the oath doctors take to “first do no harm.”
Great news! All three of the pro-life bills that Eagle Forum of Alabama is promoting were reported out of the House Health Committee on Feb. 8th, after public hearings on all of them.
HB24 – Adoption by Rep. Rich Wingo (334) 242-7681
This bill would establish the Alabama Child Placing Agency Inclusion Act. It would prohibit the state from discriminating against child placing agencies on the basis that the provider declines to provide a child placement that conflicts with the religious beliefs of the provider.
HB95 – Conscience by Rep. Arnold Mooney (334) 242-7744
HB96 – Suicide by Rep. Mack Butler (334) 242-7446
We are asking Representatives for a “Pro-life Day” for all three bills to come up in the House. Senate sponsors should be dropping companion bills in the next few days. Please call the numbers listed above, and thank the sponsors and Rep. April Weaver, chairperson of the Health Committee for the completion of this first step. She can be reached at (334) 242-7731.
Act now before the end of the session to ensure pro-life legislative victories! Your voice is needed to protect human life. All you have to do call or e-mail. Your legislators need to hear that you support the pro-legislation below.
<< HB376/SB363 (Butler, House and Willams [Senate]): The Alabama Unborn Child Protection from Dismemberment Abortion Act would, if enacted, end dismemberment abortions – This bill would stop this barbaric practice and protect babies from the harmful pain when this type takes place.
<<SB205 (Sanford, Senate): Ban on Abortion Clinics 2,000 ft. away from a school. If enacted, this legislation would protect students from being targeted by abortion clinics.
<<HB157 (Mooney, House): Ban on Assisted Suicide outlaws assisted suicide in Alabama. Currently, Alabama has no protection to protect individuals from this practice.
<<HB158 (Wingo) Child Care Provider Inclusion Act protects adoption agencies from being closed by unfair government license requirements which violate the First Amendment.
Please find your legislators and let them know of your support for these important pieces of legislation and your support of pro-life efforts. Remember to be polite but passionate in your request for their support.
First step – Please call your Representative and Senator. Tell them you are their constituent and ask them if they are sponsoring any of the above bills. Thank them if they are a sponsor. Go to Eagle Forum of Alabama’s website to find your legislators at http://alabamaeagle.org/find-your-legislators.
Second step – Please call the leadership. Ask Senate and House leadership to support these pro-life measures.
Speaker Mike Hubbard: 334-242-7668
Pro Tem of the House, Rep. Victor Gaston: 334-242-7663
Pro Tem of the Senate, Del Marsh: 334-242-7877 (Montgomery)
Senate Rules Committee Chairman, Jabo Waggoner: 334-242-7892 (Montgomery) (Thank Jabo for his support of Dismemberment Bill).
If you have further questions on pro-life legislation this session, please contact Eagle Forum of Alabama at (205) 879-7096.