|Who we are
Sarasota-Manatee Right to Life, Inc., an affiliate of the National Right to Life Committee, is a non-profit, secular community organization established to educate the public through peaceful means regarding life issues such as abortion, infanticide, euthanasia, stem cell research and assisted suicide. SMRTL promotes the protection of the right to life of the unborn child, the elderly and the disabled by promoting legal, political, social and cultural reforms designed to ensure both the right to life and the human dignity of each person from the moment of fertilization until natural death. Read more here.
Help save babies,
in Luncheons for Life
Sarasota-Manatee Right to Life has put its name behind a series of monthly Luncheons for Life. About 40 people participated April 11 in the first one.
The free luncheons will get pro-life organizations and individuals together to share information and experiences. The goal is a network of pro-lifers, each benefitting from the others. The conversations could lead to solutions to problems and new ways to approach needs.
The first lunch was at Mattison’s 41 in Sarasota. Many attending knew of one another, but several had never met. They ranged from leaders to followers, representing pregnancy centers, homes for mothers, charitable groups, sidewalk counselors, prayer leaders and others, both clergy and lay, from various denominations. They chatted informally at lunch. Then many shared their pro-life activities and missions with the whole group.
The second luncheon is to be May 9 at Polo Grill in Lakewood Ranch. Subsequent ones would be in the Bradenton and Venice areas, then continue to rotate around various locations. The luncheons are being organized and carried out by Stephen and Janine Marrone, local philanthropists, and Kathie Majerchin, former SOLVE development director.
They borrowed the idea from Louisiana, where it began about six years ago. One of the leaders is Ben Clapper, Louisiana Right to Life Federation director, who helped with election work last year in Florida.
The Louisiana effort eventually led to writing, lobbying for and passing a law requiring abortion facilities to tell women they can’t be forced to abort and give them information on pregnancy resources.
For a web story on the Louisiana experience, go to http://wau.org/archives/article/luncheons_for_life .
for our freedoms
We join those of many faiths (and no faith) rallying for freedom of religion and freedom of conscience. And we will continue to fight as long as our basic freedoms are threatened.
Right to Life is the oldest and largest pro-life group in the nation. We are secular; religion doesn’t play a role in our positions. But we do accept without question, for moral and biological reasons, that human life begins at conception. If you doubt that, check a grade-school science book.
And that life has rights under our Declaration of Independence, which preceded our First Amendment — inalienable rights which even government cannot take away.
The Right to Life organization is affected by the Health and Human Services mandate that would require many employers, unless narrowly exempted, to provide and pay for contraception, sterilization and abortion-inducing drugs.
We aren’t like churches; we can’t get a religious exemption. But unless we get an exemption based on conscience or employer size, the fines probably would bankrupt us if we don’t comply. Or we’d be required to pay for procedures that contradict the very essence of what our organization stands for — procedures that would end innocent human life.
Yes, END life. Manufacturers’ labels say some forms of contraception may end life before implantation, and others have the same ingredients as the abortion pill. And if there’s even the slightest chance a human life may die, like a hunter facing an unknown target, we won’t shoot and take that chance.
Contraception is NOT “health care.” And abortion is not health care. Health care involves medicine or procedures that improve health or cure illness. Pregnancy is a natural condition, not an illness.
Paying for contraception is paying for a voluntary lifestyle, not a health condition.
Paying for abortion is paying for a voluntary decision — elective surgery, most often without medical necessity.
The concern here is not just contraception. In an act of deception, and violating its own previous executive order on the Affordable Care Act, the administration has also recently laid out — in 644 pages — regulations showing how coverage for abortions — for any reason, even late-term abortion — will be available in some health plan exchanges, supported by federal tax funds. People in exchanges that provide such coverage would pay an abortion surcharge but will not be told that in advance when they’re trying to select policies.
This is a sharp break from decades of federal law banning federal funds for abortion and for insurance that includes abortion.
But supporters of contraception coverage claim we’d save money because birth control is cheaper than pregnancy.
So, by that logic, killing babies is cheaper than raising them. And assisted suicide is cheaper than health care for the elderly. And letting cancer patients die is cheaper than treating them.
The bottom line is: We are a democracy. In a democracy, we have the right to not violate our conscience — whether religiously-motivated or simply morally and ethically.
We have the right to liberty. We fought for this liberty, it’s in our First Amendment, and guaranteed further by several federal laws.
Let’s get one thing straight: The so-called “birth control” mandate isn’t about providing artificial contraception; that’s already widely available. And it’s not about the cost; it’s quite affordable at local pharmacies. (Yet for those in the business of providing contraception, sales generated $15.5 billion in 2010.)
The mandate, in essence, is about a fundamental right to liberty — a right the slaves were given 149 years ago.
39 years ago, we lost the even-more fundamental Right to Life. We’re still working to get that back.
But even fifth-graders get the bit about the right to liberty … so should our government.
This isn’t about birth control. It’s about government control.