Earlier this year, I received a phone call from a new mother who was desperately trying to get help for her infant son. Her baby was born prematurely, and the hospital was refusing to move him to a facility where he could receive advanced treatment. This mother did not trust the doctors at her current hospital, because they had repeatedly advised her to abort her baby due to anticipated birth defects. Fortunately, we were able to help her by connecting her with a volunteer parental rights attorney who spent hours on the phone arguing with doctors until the infant boy was moved to a special intensive care pediatric facility.
This is one of the reasons I was delighted to see the Trump administration issue an Executive Order on Friday “Protecting Vulnerable Infants and Newborn Children.” This new order makes it clear that, under federal law, “all infants born alive are individuals…[and] are afforded the same legal protections as any other person. Together, these laws help protect infants born alive from discrimination in the provision of medical treatment, including infants who require emergency medical treatment, who are premature, or who are born with disabilities. Such infants are entitled to meaningful and non-discriminatory access to medical examination and services, with the consent of a parent or guardian, when they present at hospitals receiving Federal funds.”
This order was issued in part to prevent cases like the one of the baby whose mother called me, recognizing that, “Despite these laws, some hospitals refuse the required medical screening examination and stabilizing treatment or otherwise do not provide potentially lifesaving medical treatment to extremely premature or disabled infants, even when parents plead for such treatment…And the denial of such treatment, or discouragement of parents from seeking such treatment for their children, devalues the lives of these children and may violate Federal law.”
The order promises to investigate or withhold federal funding from medical facilities that refuse to provide lifesaving treatment to vulnerable newborns.
In light of this, it is possible that the MA “ROE” Act would violate federal law if passed. Right now, our state laws require life-saving treatment for children born alive, even in the case of an abortion that the infant survives. The ROE Act would eliminate this statute, paving the way for abortionists to refuse care for babies “accidentally” born-alive. This is precisely why the ROE Act has been labelled the “Infanticide Act.” Lest you think that this is a rare, hypothetical situation, the CDC has nearly 150 publicly documented cases of infants born alive after abortion. Unfortunately, while Executive Orders can be easily withdrawn under a new presidential administration, a pro-abortion state law in Massachusetts would likely haunt us indefinitely.
Nevertheless, as I wrote to you last week, abortion advocates are using the Supreme Court nomination fight as an excuse to make a renewed push for passing the Infanticide Act in MA. But President Trump wasn’t the only one speaking out in defense of life on Friday. Boston’s own Cardinal O’Malley issued a strong statement against the ROE Act, describing it is as “radical in its nature and destructive in its consequences… Opposition to the Act is required on moral grounds, indeed on basic human rights grounds.”
His announcement went on to urge Catholics to keep advocating for the unborn. “We will continue to explain our views to legislators and urge citizens to express their opposition to their representatives and senators. We will dialogue with our neighbors who may differ with the Church’s position and will do so with care and civility. In the end, we are simply committed to protecting human life in its most vulnerable condition.”
We are grateful for this pro-life leadership for both our nation and our Commonwealth. Now it’s time for us to do our part by calling our state representatives and reminding them that their constituents stand firmly for life and oppose the ROE Act.
We encourage you to get back in touch with your State (not Federal) Representative and encourage them to say NO to ROE!
The Roe Act would:
- Remove ALL Parental Consent
- Allow “passive” Infanticide
- Allow dangerous abortion procedures outside of a hospital setting
Find your legislators’ contact information here.
Read the MFI brief on the Roe Act here.