Abortion and Trafficking: Two Birds of a Feather
Abortion and sex trafficking aren’t often brought together in the same sentence, but they have a lot more in common than meets the eye and doubles the devastation in many women’s lives.
Earlier this week, our friends at Americans United for Life and Global Centurion hosted a briefing on Capitol Hill on the connection of abortion to sex trafficking and various ways the women are impacted from their mental health to their physical health.
What people may not realize is that sex trafficking victims are often coerced into abortions by the trafficker so that he or she can continue to make a profit off of them. Believe it or not, it’s not always a male who is the trafficker, and it’s not unusual for women to be in charge of a harem of victims. At other times, trafficking victims are impregnated by their pimp so that they can remain under their control.
As discussed in our “The Link Between Pornography, Sex Trafficking, and Abortion,” it’s nearly impossible to know the total number of abortions committed on sex-trafficked women" but a in a survey of 66 women who were sex trafficking survivors, about 71 percent reported that they became pregnant at least once while being trafficked, and about 21 percent said they had five or more pregnancies while being trafficked and that from these 66 women they had a total of 114 abortions among them while being trafficked.
Abortion facilities like Planned Parenthood aren’t complaining because it’s more business for them. In a 2014 Beazley Institute Report, over 1,000 female victims of sex trafficking from across the United States gave information regarding their experience at health care facilities. Over a quarter (29.6 percent) of the survivors had visited a Planned Parenthood facility while they were being trafficked. One victim of sex trafficking said that they went to Planned Parenthood because “they didn’t ask any questions.”
Instead of reporting the traffickers, Planned Parenthood enabled them to abuse these women over and over again. More stories like these can be read in our Planned Parenthood Is Not Pro-Woman publication. Of course, it’s one thing to see the statistics — and another to hear the stories that put faces to the numbers. Our Director of Life, Culture, and Women’s Advocacy, Patrina Mosley, was there and explains that it was very emotional for listeners to hear the evils these women experience. But on the other hand, you could also tell it was freeing for the survivors to give their testimonies, because they know more people will be moved to fight for justice.
Patrina also shared on the panel that, in essence, the way forward is understanding the signs of sex trafficking in our everyday surroundings. The more people pay attention, the more likely it is that someone will be rescued. And secondly, there’s no way around the part values and sexual morality play in this crisis. Paying for sex and killing a child in the womb both devalue human dignity. Alongside punitive justice to deter bad behavior, we cannot abolish the modern slavery and holocaust of our time until we return to understand that sexual relations were designed to occur in the sanctity and safety of marriage.
Originally published here.
A Tale of Two Yales
The tuition at Yale University is nothing compared to what it’s costing students in another category: freedom. The third oldest college in America obviously doesn’t remember a lot from its roots, when a group of ministers founded the school to fight the growing liberalism at Harvard. Imagine what those church leaders would think now — 300 years later — when it’s not liberals being squeezed out of the campus, but Christians!
They may be Ivy Leaguers, but the campus’s law school hasn’t been too bright in its treatment of believers. When the Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF) was invited to Yale’s Federalist Society to talk about Jack Phillips’s Supreme Court case, the usual suspects pitched a fit. The school’s LGBTQ group, Outlaws, were furious that the club would invite a Christian group to campus who defended a man with natural marriage views. (Views, incidentally, that were vindicated by the Supreme Court!)
They responded, Senator Ted Cruz (R-Texas) told me, as “campus leftists do. They protested.” One of their demands, he explained, was that Yale change their student loan program and stop offering financial aid to any student who goes to work at a group at a Christian organization. Specifically, the ones that actually follow the Bible’s teachings on marriage and sexuality. Yale, Senator Cruz wrote to law school dean Heather Gerken, has “an obligation to protect and respect the constitutional rights of its students.” Blacklisting Christians — or worse, punishing them for their views — is an insult to the Constitution these future attorneys should be learning. And Senator Cruz, for one, refuses to take it lying down.
Earlier this week, Senator Cruz launched an investigation, demanding all of the communication that led to the change. Although Yale promises to comply with the probe, Dean Gerken insists the university did nothing wrong. “Contrary to press reports, our policy does not single out any student based on religion. Instead, it is designed to protect all students, including Christians…” Let’s hope she’s telling the truth, Senator Cruz said, because:
“Yale receives large amounts of federal funds, and it’s against federal civil rights law to discriminate based on religious faith… [The Judiciary Committee] submitted to Yale a request for production of all of the documents, all of the emails, all of the correspondence behind this policy… And I think it’s likely to indicate that this was driven by a very specific animus to discriminate against Christians and to try to [marginalize] ADF and punish any Yale students who choose to work there.”
If Senator Cruz is proven right, Yale won’t just have to worry about the committee’s reaction — but the administration’s. President Trump made no secret of his frustration with the Left’s crackdown on campus freedom — even going so far as to threaten funds for any school caught stifling debate. But this case could prove especially significant, Senator Cruz warned.
“I think Yale law school is the canary in the coal mine. If they get away with this, we’ll see law school after law school following the same pattern. And I’ll tell you, what the LGBT group demanded of Yale — not just that they discriminate against Christians and financial aid. They demanded that they discriminate against anyone who believes in traditional marriage in admissions — that they not even admit anyone who believes in a biblical definition of marriage that is profoundly dangerous and we’ve got to stand up and prevent it.”
Originally published here.
One Bryant Leap for Mankind
If the pro-abortion crowd is trying to spook Mississippi Governor Phil Bryant (R), they’ll have to try harder. If there’s one thing the Magnolia State leader doesn’t do, it’s scare easily. When he signed one of the earliest abortion bans into law this year, he expected it to be challenged. But he never once thought that was a good reason not to press on.
For Mississippi, the storyline feels eerily similar. State passes a conservative law. Liberals sue. State ends up in court against the same judge — U.S. District court activist Carlton Reeves. In Bryant’s case, it’s almost comical. Reeves has presided over the heartbeat bill, a 15-week abortion ban, the religious liberty measure. Even Governor Bryant’s attempt to expand the airport commission suddenly ended up in this same judge’s lap. “Every case with my name on it — Reeves gets all of them,” the governor told me on Wednesday’s “Washington Watch.”
So it wasn’t all that surprising, then, that the judge didn’t bother hiding his liberal leanings. What was surprising, though, is how openly confrontational Reeves was about a law that was democratically passed. “It was somewhat shocking to hear a federal judge… literally chastise the attorneys and members of the Mississippi legislature for doing the will of the people,” Bryant said. After all, “This is a republic, not a dictatorship. And the people of a republic speak through their elected officials” — who, he points out, overwhelmingly voted to protect life. “We believe that taking the life of that unborn child is murder. So if you cannot stand for the life of an unborn child, I’m not sure what we will be allowed to stand for.”
With a string of pro-life legislation catching fire all across the South and Midwest, the abortion lobby is spending an unusual amount of time in court — even for them. “That’s the way the Left today works,” Bryant pointed out. "They can’t beat you at the ballot box. They can’t beat you on the floor of your legislature with the legislative process. So they sue you, and then they go to their friends in the media who begin their attack, and then all the online troll join in. But, you know? It doesn’t faze me. I’m going to do what’s right every time.“
That’s one of the things Mississippians will miss when the governor finishes up his second term. For him, the fight for the unborn was always deeply personal. "You know, I started life as a deputy sheriff. You and I were in law enforcement. We were trained to put our lives in front of the lives of people — even [if we lost ours]… We rushed into dangerous situations to try to save lives. So I know what my responsibility is for an unborn child — whether it’s a child in the womb or two-year-old that’s in danger… and if it means going to the United States Supreme Court, we are going to do that.”
No matter what happens, or what the court decides, “I’ll be able to return to my private life and knowing that I’ve done all that I could do.” Because in the end, he said, people may not agree with where he stands — but they know where he does. And in battles like this, sometimes that’s all that matters.
Originally published here.
This is a publication of the Family Research Council. Mr. Perkins is president of FRC.