Protests, celebrations mark Roe vs Wade annivesary

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The anniversary of Roe vs Wade, the landmark Supreme Court ruling that legalized abortion, has people on both sides of the issue gathering in the Chicago area.

More than a thousand people attended an event supporting Planned Parenthood tonight at the downtown restaurant Carnival.  The annual gala celebrated the 40th anniversary of the ruling. Former Obama senior advisor David Axelrod was key note speaker and several of the state’s notable democrats attended including Lt. Governor Shiela Simon and Senate President John Cullerton.

Outside, members of the pro-life action league protested the celebration.

Also tonight in suburban Matteson, hundreds representing the Archdiocese of Chicago left for Washington D.C to attend to the annual March for Life.

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  • Smiling Politely

    Hmmm, let's see…Republicans don't want abortions nor do they want to fund services like Planned Parenthood. Yet they think everyone should own a gun and claim to worship the teachings of Jesus Christ. Crazy!

    • Gene619

      You've got it right Confused,the march was today and all I see in the above article is a one line mention…Liberal media strikes again,and as to our (friend) Smily-Poli,get your facts straight.we're not in favor of ALL abortion…that's only in case of RAPE,INCEST or danger to the victim.

  • Brian K

    Here are some questions if I was a journalist that I would like to ask pro-choice candidates and supporters. I would welcome some answers from fellow WGN posters.

    1. Considering that pro-choice candidates obviously support a woman’s right to an abortion, the first question focuses upon limitations (in light of the debate surrounding partial-birth abortion, among other practices, this seems like a rational question to ask pro-choice candidates): “Are there any restrictions you would approve of?”

    2. Then, there’s the pervasive issue of “gendercide” — a subject TheBlaze has covered in the past. There’s no reason why candidates of all stripes can’t answer questions about the topic. Here’s an important one, as framed by Wax: “Does this phenomenon pose a problem for you or do you believe in the absolute right of a woman to terminate a pregnancy because the unborn fetus is female?”

    3. Abortion and emergency contraception become further charged and divisive subjects when minors are involved in the mix. With parental consent being lax in some states and localities and stricter in others, this is an important subject to explore among pro-choice candidates (the new Plan B program in NYC is just one development that has spawned controversy of late). Hence, the question: “Do you support any restrictions or parental notification regarding abortion access for minors?”

    4. One subject that many pro-choice politicians attempt to avoid is when life begins — perhaps the most divisive of all abortion questions. With fetal heartbeats registering as early as 18 days, technology has made the discussion even more complex. Here are two related questions from Wax on the matter: “If you do not believe that human life begins at conception, when do you believe it begins? At what stage of development should an unborn child have human rights?”

    5. Studies have shown that the vast majority of women who become pregnant with Down syndrom children and find out about it through available testing choose to abort. Much like gendercide, this particular issue offers up some major ethical questions. Wax challenges pro-lifers with the following related question: “How do you answer the charge that this phenomenon resembles the ‘eugenics’ movement a century ago – the slow, but deliberate ‘weeding out’ of those our society would deem ‘unfit’ to live?”

    6. Then there’s the issue of religious freedom. Earlier this year, the “War on Religion” quickly turned into an alleged “War on Women.” Considering the lawsuits currently being waged against the Obama administration over its contraception mandate, religious freedom and women’s rights are on the political docket this season. Hence, the question: “Do you believe an employer should be forced to violate his or her religious conscience by providing access to abortifacient drugs and contraception to employees?”

    7. Much like gendercide and the abortion conundrum facing children with Down syndrom, some have emphasized the racial elements associated with abortion. As Wax notes, “Alveda King, niece of Martin Luther King, Jr. has said that ‘abortion is the white supremacist’s best friend,’ pointing to the fact that Black and Latinos represent 25% of our population but account for 59% of all abortions.” As a result, the related question is: “How do you respond to the charge that the majority of abortion clinics are found in inner-city areas with large numbers of minorities?”

    8. Wax also notes that pro-choice candidates and advocates often refer to abortion as a “tragic choice.” However, the editor wonders why this terminology is used, specifically if abortion is not dubbed by many pro-choicers as “immoral.” He asks: “If abortion is not morally objectionable, then why is it tragic? Does this mean there is something about abortion that is different than other standard surgical procedures?”

    9. Then, the big question, of course, is partial birth abortion. Considering the first question, above — and thinking over what should happen once a baby is able to live outside the mother’s womb on its own — the debate becomes more complicated (some would argue that it actually simplifies the debate). Even if some support abortion rights, many pro-choicers still believe that there must be a cut-off (i.e. if the child can live outside of the mother, the procedure should no longer be permitted). Wax asks, “Do you believe abortion should be legal once the unborn fetus is viable – able to survive outside the womb?”

    10. And the final question — one that involves crime and the official designation of the unborn: “If a pregnant woman and her unborn child are murdered, do you believe the criminal should face two counts of murder and serve a harsher sentence?”