CHECK IT OUT: Kristan Hawkins’ free speech op-ed on Fox News

The uproar over Vice President Mike Pence’s decision to leave the Colts-49ers game after some NFL players took a knee during the national anthem again highlights the intense cultural debate over free speech that seems of utmost importance to the media and activists. Yet not all “speech” is treated as equal in coverage and attention.

Over the last few weeks, the free speech rights of students on college campuses have been violated as peaceful chalk messages from students have been destroyed, flyers pulled down and permits for new pro-life groups and speakers slow walked through the approval process to prevent voices from being heard. If you haven’t heard about the college blockade taking place even this week, perhaps it is because the students whose voices are being forcibly silenced favor life over abortion. And while they may not get the attention that millionaire athletes can garner, their points of view are no less valid.

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We Won!

What an incredible day today. I am overwhelmed for having witnessed and been a part of this huge victory for religious freedom, women and all Americans.

I got to stand outside the U.S. Supreme Court yesterday morning as the Hobby Lobby v. Sebelius decision was handed down to shouts of joy. It was amazing and awe-inspiring. After the Justices upheld Obamacare two years ago, I was incredibly disheartened. It was devastating. And then not long after, the Obama Administration, under Kathleen Sebelius, the Secretary of Health and Human Services, issued the HHS abortion pill mandate, which forced every employer to purchase abortion-inducing drugs for their employees, regardless of whether or not the employer had strongly held religious beliefs against such pills.kristan

The Supreme Court ruled today against Sebelius and against the Administration, saying that “HHS’s contraception mandate substantially burdens the exercise of religion.” This means it goes directly against our first freedoms as Americans, namely the First Amendment and religious liberty.

As soon as the news reached us at the Court steps, a jubilant roar went through the crowd – which was mostly made up of young women by the way. When we knew for sure that the decision was a victory, there was such a huge cry from the crowd that it gave me goosebumps. I got to be right in the middle of our pro-life activists, cheering on Hobby Lobby and the decision that finally went our way.

It felt amazing to stand there with dozens and dozens of pro-life women (and men). Truly, this generation is the Pro-Life generation and, today, we got to show the nation. All the major television networks ran shots of our rally and press conference, many including our “We Are the Pro-Life Generation” and #WomenInControl signs. The visuals were astounding – it was such a great way to witness to the country that it is these young women who are standing up for religious freedom, conscience rights, the right to life and against bossy bureaucrats who want to take away our freedoms.

This was a huge victory for women, both on the political left and right. Thankfully, the Supreme Court’s decision didn’t further exacerbate the abortion industry’s lucrative, false notion that pregnancy and fertility is a disease. I find it demeaning that our President and his administration think that I need free $9 birth control to be equal to a man. Both men and women were made by one Creator and he made us equal.

Watch Kristan Hawkins on Huckabee

College students have found themselves on the forefront of the religious freedom fight.  Bowdoin College in Maine will no longer be recognizing the Bowdoin Christian Fellowship as a student group on campus any longer, even though they have been a fixture on campus for over 40 years. Why? Because the Christian group won’t allow anyone who isn’t a professed Christian to run for student leadership of the group or lead a Bible study. The university says that even though anyone can join the group, it is discriminatory that they aren’t allowing non-Christians to lead the group.

This is only the beginning of a disturbing trend. The New York Times has more:

At Cal State, the nation’s largest university system with nearly 450,000 students on 23 campuses, the chancellor is preparing this summer to withdraw official recognition from evangelical groups that are refusing to pledge not to discriminate on the basis of religion in the selection of their leaders. And at Vanderbilt, more than a dozen groups, most of them evangelical but one of them Catholic, have already lost their official standing over the same issue; one Christian group balked after a university official asked the students to cut the words “personal commitment to Jesus Christ” from their list of qualifications for leadership.

Kristan Hawkins, SFLA president, will be going on Governor Huckabee’sTV show on 4th of July weekend to talk about the story. Tune in to the Fox News Channel at 8pm ET on 4th of July weekend to hear what Kristan has to say about why this kind of case is incredibly important to not only this particular Christian group on campus but to all pro-life groups on campus!

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The “Gosnell of Texas” Gets Shut Down

karpenLast summer Students for Life rallied in Austin, Texas in support of a bill that would force
abortion clinics to provide the same standard of care and meet the same requirements of surgical centers as well to make sure that all abortionists have hospital admitting privileges. It also thankfully banned late-term abortions.

While abortion advocates were in an uproar over this bill that would provide higher standards for women’s health, pro-lifers were fighting to make this bill law and succeeded! Governor Rick Perry signed the bill into law and several abortion clinics shut down almost immediately because they couldn’t meet the basic health standards.

Dr. Douglas Karpen, a Texas abortionist, has been referred to as the Kermit Gosnell of Texas because of similar horrific practices of aborting very late-term babies, killing babies after botched abortions, and causing significant harm to women.

Karpen has been shut down and cannot legally perform abortions because he doesn’t have admitting privileges to any hospitals within a 30 mile radius of any of his clinics, according to the Texas Medical Board.

Employees of Dr. Karpen came forward to reveal to the public the heinous practices of Karpen, including delivering live babies and then killing them. Unfortunately, in December a Texas grand jury said it didn’t have enough evidence to convict him. However, he still faces another lawsuit from a “woman who suffered a life-threatening injury to her uterus following an abortion he performed.”

Since the law was passed, 19 clinics in Texas have closed down because they couldn’t meet the health standards and many more are expected to follow!

Abortion and Birth in the Same Facility?

Would you give birth where a woman was having an abortion in the next room? One “full-spectrum” women’s facility in Buffalo, New York, is shepherding patients through that exact scenario, according to the New York Times.

The Buffalo Womenservices facility caters to women who want to have abortions as well as give birth yet all they promote on their homepage is their membership in the National Abortion Federation and NARAL and how they “provide women with safe, legal and confidential abortion services in a compassionate and supportive setting”, not to mention that they perform surgical abortions up to 22 weeks. Babies are born at 22 weeks and with the help of advanced medicine and technology, live long and productive lives.
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It is disturbing to say the least that a preborn baby will have its life taken while a mother gives life to a little child in the same facility. The article points out that since the facility opened in February, 16 babies have been born yet there is no mention of the number of the children killed by abortion in the same facility.

No matter how it is phrased, abortion and birth are not part of “reproductive health”, as abortion-advocates like to say. The killing of an innocent child is not part of healthcare and never should be. Abortion advocates are looking for ways to reduce the stigma of abortion and by putting abortion and birth in the same sentence, they think it will show that abortion is normal and accepted.

There are very few facility like this in the country but it is certain to be a new trend in the pro-abortion movement as they are desperately trying to show the public that they promote all choices in pregnancy, not just abortion. It’s like when pro-lifers don’t want to be accused of being just pro-baby and decide that they want to serve women and mothers as well. Except in our case, the outcome is good.

Abortion is the killing of a human life – even abortion advocates know that. It will never be different than that, which is why we must abolish abortion in our lifetime.

YMCA Kicks Out Students for Life

Students for Life of America (SFLA) was left out in the cold after the local YMCA was bullied by pro-abortion activists to evict SFLA students from their facilities. SFLA had worked out an arrangement with the associate branch director of the Town Lake branch of the Austin YMCA to use their showers for the week of the ‘Students #Stand4Life Bus Tour.’  Previously, YMCA management had indicated everything was working out great, but certain orange-shirted members of the club said that it was “too political” to have pro-lifers in the showers — and pressured management to give the students the boot.

“We had absolutely no problems on Monday night when we used their facilities.The YMCA management was respectful, but some angry pro-abortion activists were being very aggressive with YMCA staff members and the staff said they felt threatened,” said Brendan O’Morchoe, Director of Field Operations with SFLA. “Unfortunately, the anger and rage from the pro-abortion protestors has created a toxic environment even outside the Capitol Building.  It’s really a shame that the YMCA was bullied by these people, it just goes to show how pro–aborts operate every day.

“The YMCA has a long history of helping young people and always had an open door policy to everyone, yet we were turned away because of our pro-life beliefs. The YMCA rescinded their offer to help because of the complaints of a few people on one side of the abortion issue and we were discriminated against based on our political position.”

SFLA was left scrambling to find other locations at which to bathe as the church buildings they are staying at do not have shower facilities.

The Students #Stand4Life Bus Tour left DC on Sunday for a 30 hour bus ride, making stops to pick up more students along the way in Tennessee, Arkansas, and Texas. On Monday, the Bus Tour met up with even more pro-life students at the Texas State Capitol who flew and drove in from around Texas as well as states like Iowa, New Mexico, and Oregon to back up their fellow pro-life Texans.  After the group met with Lt. Gov. Dewhurst on the Senate Floor, SFLA National High School Coordinator Missy Martinez spoke at the #Stand4Life rally that night.  On Tuesday morning, SFLA activists and local pro-life protesters took over the kickoff rally of Planned Parenthood’s “Stand with Texas Women Bus Tour.” The bus tour continues through Sunday.

Media contact:
Alexa Coombs, alexa@studentsforlife.org, 571-295-7352

All posts on the Students #Stand4Life Bus TourSFL4TXcapitol

Statement on Today’s Supreme Court Decision

From SFLA’s President, Kristan Hawkins:

Today’s Supreme Court decisions have major implications for Roe v. Wade and Doe v. Bolton. In the DOMA case, the Supreme Court found that the federal government must respect the rights of states to determine their own laws protecting the “rights” of their citizens, citing the ‘equal protection’ clause of the 5th Amendment. This begs the question, “Where is the equal protection for pre-born babies?”

In the Prop 8 case, the Court decided to not repeat the mistakes of Roe. They did not overturn the duly enacted laws of states with a sweeping declaration like they did with Roe. They found that the federal government does not have a compelling interest to make a sweeping declaration on equal protections.

The same logic should be applied to Roe. And the Supreme Court should follow its own principles set forth in these cases to overturn Roe v. Wade and Doe v. Bolton and turn those decisions back to the states to extend equal protections to pre-born babies.

Related Blog: On Gay Marriage and Abortion

Equal Protection