The questions I have received revolved around 2 things. 1- This definition of "medical necessity" and and 2- permissibility of abortion as it relates to circumstances of rape or incest. These are among the most emotionally debated topics. We must be careful because the atheist and critic states that if we truly value human life we would value it in all circumstances (including rape or incest) and if we value the life of a baby as the result of rape or incest we are condemning the victim to a life of repeated pain by forcing her to carry the product (the child) of such a terrible event. In either case the critic always says, "If God existed and he cared, he wouldn't have let it happen."
First, the Kaiser Family Foundation provides information on how states offer and administer "medically necessary" abortions. You should look up that information to see how things are handled in your state so that you may know how your tax dollars are spent and what to expect as you minister to various individuals with certain medical needs. At Answers.com it is stated that abortion is not among the medical procedures covered by Medicaid, the federally funded, state administered program that provides health care to many poor women.
Under federal law, the so-called "Hyde Amendment" passed in 1976 and amended in 1997, prohibits the use of federal funds for abortion except in cases of rape, incest, or when the life of the pregnant woman is in danger. Some states use their own Medicaid funds to pay for abortions that physicians consider "medically necessary," and a few states fund abortions cases of fetal anomaly or grave physical health danger of the mother. Some private organizations, such as Planned Parenthood, assist low-income women in states with restrictive funding policies by performing abortions for reduced fees. In 1999, less than two-fifths of women with employer-based health insurance were covered for abortion services. Many of those women with gaps in coverages within their primary health plan were prime targets an users of Planned Parenthood services.
The news is that this Holiday Season Planned Parenthood is offering coupons for abortions in Indiana, at 35 of it's clinics across the state. The coupons are for an amount up to $25.00 per request. This is the same Planned Parenthood that is responsible for 20% of the nations abortions per year (1 out of every 5) receives $305.3 Million per year in government funding, has net assets of $952 Million and ended its 2005-2006 fiscal year with a $115 Million surplus.
One thing is for sure, at these numbers and profit margins Planned Parenthood certainly DOESN'T need a Government bailout, bridge loan or anything else.
The facts are that according to John Lofton of WorldNetDaily.com under the regime of President George Bush (The Religious Right & Conservative Republicans-mind you) since 2001 Planned Parenthood has received $2.2 Billion in Federal Funding which was an increase of 67%.
No More Smoke & Mirrors, The Real Facts
To the heart of this post and as not to add additional confusion to the fiasco that we are witnessing, it is interesting to note that only 1% of women in the 2004 survey-based U.S. study became pregnant as a result of rape and 0.5% as a result of incest. These statistics are according to Finer, Lawrence B., Frohwirth, Lori F., Dauphinee, Lindsay A., Singh, Shusheela, & Moore, Ann M. (2005). Reasons U.S. women have abortions: quantative and qualitative perspectives. Perspectives on Sexual and Reproductive Health, 37 (3), 110-8. Retrieved 2006-01-18. This information offers startling insight into the myth that a high representative amount of abortions are due to rape or incest therefore condoning abortion.
To place this in perspective, of the estimated 50,000,000 abortions that have occurred since 1973 only 1.5% were due primarily to rape or incest. This would bring the figure to approximately 750,000 abortions in which the killing of a fetus was decided based on morally subjective terms. As it relates to the black community, assuming the same 1.5% rate of rape and incest, (which may be more or less) the numbers would shrink from 13,000,000 since abortion legalization in 1973 to 195,000. The average number of abortions per day would go from it's current level of 1,450 to approximately 22 per day.
These numbers are of course, hypothetical but they do drive home the point that even IF a person were to allow that abortion is permissible in cases of rape or incest society would be more than significantly less impacted than we are as a result of the current trend within the abortion arena. In fact statistics say that almost half of all unwanted pregnancies occur because of contraceptive failure. In other words frivolous sexual behavior, and a lack of abstinence and self restraint has led to over 25,000,000 abortions by itself within the United States.
There is a human factor to these numbers and statistics that must be discussed. When a person IS the statistic it can be devastating to their life and as we see the life of the unborn. I have seen the devastating effects of a child denied a mother's love through what we consider the premature death of the mother. These situations are not to be taken lightly, but that's when the church comes in and why it is important to be a part of a healthy body of believers who will pray and put their money where their mouth is...in their actions and in support of families and children in need.
The church and leaders should teach that all life is valuable. Even the life of the child produced as a result of rape or incest. Only God can heal wounds and the greatest pain could be the greatest gain if placed in the hand of the master of our souls. The atheist and skeptic is right on one hand, If we value life and truly believe that we are created in the image and likeness of God, we must instruct those who have been used and abused to seek shelter in the safety and love of Jesus Christ and not render or offer a retaliation for sin by taking out punishment upon the innocent.
These situations are not easy and according to statistical data, not something that must be dealt with all the time, but the church must be prepared to give an answer and make a difference in all areas of life and living. These are opportunities to teach values and virtues of life that change lives for millions. Values such as forgiveness and mercy are only words until they are placed in action. It is during these times that true Christianity is exemplified. The innocent deserve at least a chance to live and make a difference in this world.
Isaiah 58:10-12 ~ "10-And if thou draw out thy soul to the hungry, and satisfy the afflicted soul; then shall thy light rise in obscurity, and thy darkness as the noonday: 11-And the Lord shall guide thee continually, and satisfy thy soul in drought and make fat thy bones: and thou shalt be like a watered garden, and like a spring of water, whose waters fail not. 12- And they that shall be of thee shall build the old waste places: thou shalt raise up the foundations of many generations; and thou shalt be called, The repairer of the breach, The restorer of paths to dwell in."
On a recent radio show, a young lady called in to complain about my position on abortion in general. She said that society is "bad enough as it is". She then asked, "how would we possibly provide for an extra 50,000,000 people?" That was a sad indicator of our times when individuals would rather use death as a manner of population control and management, giving no heed to all the potential talent, genius, and idealism that this country has sacrificed at the altar of human comforts. This doesn't even address the tax revenues, and jobs that would have been created over the same period of time, the additional funding for the social security "lock box" that Former VP Al Gore spoke of in his stolen election campaign.
To those who have made this terrible mistake, it's now your time to take what may be your greatest pain and place it into God's hand. He will wash and renew you soul, and cause you to live abundantly in HIS sufficient grace.
Psalms 118:17-21~ "17-I shall not die, but live and declare the works of the Lord. 18-The Lord hath chastened me sore: but he hath not given me over unto death. 19-Open to me the gates of righteousness and I will go in unto them, and I will praise the Lord: This gate of the Lord, into which the righteous shall enter. 21-I will praise thee: for thou hast heard me and art become my salvation."