Life sentences

Two recent U.S. rulings have gained close scrutiny from both sides of the abortion battle.  In September ’93, Month in Review reported on a case of a man who shot a pregnant woman during a hold-up, and caused her to miscarry.  The 4th District Court of Appeals in San Diego has since sentenced Robert A. Davis to life in prison for the first-degree murder of Maria Trinidad Flores’ unborn baby.  In a similar ruling, the Cook County Court in Illinois has ruled that Clinton Gillespie must also serve a life sentence for kicking his pregnant girlfriend and causing her to miscarry.  In passing the sentences, both courts have ruled that even though neither baby could have survived on its own at the time of death, a first-degree murder charge should still apply.  The Portland-based magazine Life Advocate reports that these rulings reverse 23 years of precedent and have left pro-abortion groups unusually silent.

UNICEF and Rome

On November 3, Archbishop Renato Martino announced changes to the Vatican’s policy of funding for Unicef, the United Nations controversial Children’s’ Fund.  In a statement, Archbishop Martine, the Holy See’s permanent observer to the United Nations, noted that “in recent times, under pressure from some donor countries, the original positive thrust of the agency for the well being of mothers and children…has shifted ambiguously but significantly.”  Though Unicef has never openly admitted it, for some time the organization has been funding population control programs which promote artificial contraception and abortion.  From now on, the Vatican contribution will be earmarked for pre-natal nutrition for mothers, universal child immunization, acute respiratory infections, control of diarrheal diseases and breast feeding initiatives.  Rome’s move is significant for being the first time it has publicly challenged Unicef and put pressure on the agency to change its methods.

U.S. notes

A Planned Parenthood abortion centre in Washington, D.C. is under tremendous fire.  A Guatemalan woman who speaks little or no English went to the centre to obtain birth control pills but was instead given a suction abortion.  She was not pregnant at the time and is presently suing the centre for $11 million…Jack Kevorkian laughed as he heard a judge order him to stand trail on two sets of charges for “assisting a suicide.”  Kevorkian has already “helped” 18 people kill themselves but will only e charged with two.  Kevorkian has already admitted to breaking the law and has publicly mocked prosecutors and urged them to try him…Long-time and well respected U.S. rescuer Bill Cotter was finally released from jail after serving 20 months of a two and a half year rescuing sentence.  Good to have him back…Nebraska recently became the third U.S. state to require that women must wait 24 hours and be given information about fetal development and abortion alternatives before having an abortion.  A nice start.