Sunday, January 18, 2009

National Sanctity of Human Life Day

President Bush has made some mistakes, perhaps the biggest due, not to the right-wing ideology which his detractors discern in all his actions, but to his naive generosity of spirit. For he assumed that the kind of democracy the West has enjoyed, and which was dependent on the Judeo-Christian foundations of Western civilization, could be readily grafted onto cultures with no such foundations. He may yet be proven correct in this assumption, but the indications are not all that promising.

Be that as it may, history will treat President Bush far, far better than he has been treated by his contemporary critics. In one area especially he has earned a great debt of gratitude: his defense of the unborn. Characteristically, on his final day in the White House he declared January 18th to be "National Sanctity of Human Life Day." The text of the declaration is a stirring appeal to noble principles that we have lately forgotten. Here it is:
National Sanctity of Human Life Day, 2009
A Proclamation by the President of the United States of America

All human life is a gift from our Creator that is sacred, unique, and worthy of protection. On National Sanctity of Human Life Day, our country recognizes that each person, including every person waiting to be born, has a special place and purpose in this world. We also underscore our dedication to heeding this message of conscience by speaking up for the weak and voiceless among us.

The most basic duty of government is to protect the life of the innocent. My Administration has been committed to building a culture of life by vigorously promoting adoption and parental notification laws, opposing Federal funding for abortions overseas, encouraging teen abstinence, and funding crisis pregnancy programs. In 2002, I was honored to sign into law the Born-Alive Infants Protection Act, which extends legal protection to children who survive an abortion attempt. I signed legislation in 2003 to ban the cruel practice of partial-birth abortion, and that law represents our commitment to building a culture of life in America. Also, I was proud to sign the Unborn Victims of Violence Act of 2004, which allows authorities to charge a person who causes death or injury to a child in the womb with a separate offense in addition to any charges relating to the mother.

America is a caring Nation, and our values should guide us as we harness the gifts of science. In our zeal for new treatments and cures, we must never abandon our fundamental morals. We can achieve the great breakthroughs we all seek with reverence for the gift of life.

The sanctity of life is written in the hearts of all men and women. On this day and throughout the year, we aspire to build a society in which every child is welcome in life and protected in law. We also encourage more of our fellow Americans to join our just and noble cause. History tells us that with a cause rooted in our deepest principles and appealing to the best instincts of our citizens, we will prevail.

NOW, THEREFORE, I, GEORGE W. BUSH, President of the United States of America, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and laws of the United States, do hereby proclaim January 18, 2009, as National Sanctity of Human Life Day. I call upon all Americans to recognize this day with appropriate ceremonies and to underscore our commitment to respecting and protecting the life and dignity of every human being.

IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this fifteenth day of January, in the year of our Lord two thousand nine, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and thirty-third.


1 comment:

Kevin said...

I agree with what is said here in the proclamation. All human life is sacred and should be protected.
If we are to call out evil done we must be honest and call it all out. We cannot point at those who have or perform abortions and not decry the evils purposefully done to those already born.
Does this proclamation in some way erase sanctioned torture?; rendition of prisoners for torture?; warrantless wiretaps?; illegal and unprovoked war in Iraq?; being asleep at the wheel from 1/20/01 - 9/11/01?
Why is the behaviour of this administration run by W and his master, Dick, not brought under the Girardian scrutiny? Why are we not discussing the demonization of those who do not look like us? The dehumanization of whole populations to the point where we are willing to inflict upon them evils we would not inflict upon dogs?
Is GITMO with the imprisonment without charge, including the imprisonment of children and tortured confessions any less an act of deliberate brutality than abortion?
I think we need to be more directly critical of our nations actions lest we be seen as hypocritical.
Take care Gil and keep warm.
Ad Astra Per Aspera,