Weekly Columns

Defending the Sanctity of Life

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Washington, January 17, 2018 | Lani Short (202-225-6356) | comments

As an OB-GYN who has delivered nearly 5,000 babies, I strongly support the sanctity of life. I have seen firsthand that life is a precious and beautiful miracle that begins at conception, and I am honored to stand with the pro-life community. This week, thousands of pro-life activists will make their way to Washington, D.C. for the March for Life to mark the sad anniversary of the Supreme Court’s Roe v. Wade decision; a misguided ruling on abortion that forever changed our country. The first March for Life was held in 1974, and the march continues to be the largest annual demonstration. Each year, men, women and children from all walks of life come together to peacefully march for the rights of the unborn. This year’s theme for the march is ‘Love Saves Lives.’

According to data provided by the Tennessee Department of Health Division of Policy, Planning and Assessment, since 1973, 633,861 Tennessee babies have died from abortion. This devastating statistic must encourage us to defend those who do not have a voice, and I find hope in the fact that more and more Americans are sharing their pro-life views. According to Gallup’s 2017 Values and Beliefs survey, the “slight majority (54 percent) of Americans favor curtailing abortion rights.” That same survey found that 49 percent of U.S. adults believe abortions are morally wrong, compared to the 43 percent who found them morally acceptable.

As an OBGYN, I wholeheartedly support women’s access to health care services, but abortions are not health care. It’s my responsibility and privilege as a legislator to protect those who cannot protect themselves. I will always fight for the right to life because it is my strongly-held conviction that we are all unique creations of a God who knows us and loves us before we are even conceived.

This past year, President Trump, Vice President Pence and their administration have worked to instill a culture of life in our government. And this week, I am grateful to have the opportunity to vote for a bill I cosponsored, H.R. 4712, the Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act. This important bill will put an end to the radical practice of killing living babies who survive abortion attempts. Doctors who kill babies after a failed abortion attempt would be held criminally accountable under this legislation, while mothers will be protected. Additionally, this bill will ensure that health care professionals exercise the same degree of care to a child born alive following an abortion or attempted abortion as any other child born alive at the same gestational age. I took an oath to do no harm, and it is unconscionable to me that a medical provider could kill a baby who survived a horrific procedure like abortion. To put it simply, it’s wrong and violates everything we are taught as physicians.

Each year, I am so proud of the commitment of the pro-life movement. My heart and appreciation is with everyone who marches and stands for life, and I wish all the marchers the best. If government has any function at all, it is to protect the most innocent among us, and I look forward to continuing the fight to protect the lives of the unborn. 

Feel free to contact my office if we can be of assistance to you or your family. 

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Tags: Abortion