DEMS-PROTESTERS (CORRECTED) Aug-28-2008 (760 words) With photos posted Aug. 27. xxxn
Some protesters raise abortion issue outside Democratic convention
By Jim Myers
Catholic News Service
DENVER (CNS) -- Protesters at the Democratic National Convention have been kept to a minimum as groups have been pushed away from the Pepsi Center for the Aug. 25-28 event. However, one group of pro-life activists made some noise at the public walkway a half-mile from the arena.
Nearly two dozen members of a group that calls itself Survivors of the Abortion Holocaust stood on a Denver corner Aug. 26 telling tales of abortion procedures gone wrong, calling into question Sen. Barack Obama's record on abortion issues and telling passers-by about the more than 50 million abortions performed since the Roe v. Wade Supreme Court decision that paved the way for nationally legalized abortion.
"One-third of my children's generation has been killed by abortion," said Jeff White, a father of 11 in Riverside, Calif., who was one of the national leaders of Operation Rescue before forming Survivors of the Abortion Holocaust in 1998.
The group is in strong opposition to Obama, of Illinois, as the presumptive Democratic nominee, highlighting his opposition to state legislation similar to the Born Alive Infants Protection Act passed overwhelmingly by the U.S. Congress and signed into law by President George W. Bush in 2002, before Obama joined the Senate.
The federal act provides that any child who is born alive -- regardless of the stage of development or whether the birth happened during an abortion -- is considered a person under the full extent of the law and is entitled to all protection and medical rights.
Prior to the federal act, the state of Illinois attempted to pass similar legislation, but as a state senator Obama opposed the act in 2001 and 2002 and had a hand in defeating it in 2003. Obama later said he supported the federal legislation, which included a stipulation that it would not be used to undermine Roe v. Wade, and would have backed the state proposals if they'd had that stipulation.
"If Obama is elected, he will be the most radical abortion president in the history of the nation," said White. "He says it's above his pay grade to talk about it, but he's capable of leading this discussion, an honest discussion of competing rights."
Activists held signs that showed the development of children in the womb and challenged viewers to acknowledge that the children have a right to be born. A few passers-by voiced support for the cause, but the majority of comments ranged from "you're stupid" to "change while you can" to "shut up!"
"If you can look at that and say that it is part of the human body (and then say abortion is right), logic is not working here," said K.C. Williams, a Catholic from San Clemente, Calif., who became involved with Survivors of the Abortion Holocaust several years ago. "If human life is not sacred and protected from the moment of conception until death, we are removing our finger from the dike that will drown us all."
Brandi Lozier, who turns 25 in September, is the survivor of an attempted abortion and a member of Survivors of the Abortion Holocaust. She said she survived a saline abortion at four and a half months that burned her face and left her with permanent scars.
Lozier, who was raised by her aunt, expressed disdain for Obama, saying that an Obama presidency would be a direct affront to her.
"His vote in the born-alive act was a vote to kill me," she said. "He doesn't want babies to have rights. Just because a baby is in the womb doesn't mean it's a blob, a mass of tissue. It's a human being that is so innocent; why does he want to kill the most innocent in the womb in the name of choice? ... Social justice begins in the womb."
Emily Williams, the 15-year-old daughter of K.C. Williams, joined activists in Denver because she "wanted to do everything that is legal to help end abortion."
Williams said she knows some pro-lifers among her peers, but she also runs across some "hardened, pro-abortion people in my generation."
While the group is ardently anti-Obama, White said the goal is not advocacy of one candidate over another.
"We're not out here to tell people how to vote or who to vote for. We're just out here to speak the truth," said White, an evangelical who said the group is truly ecumenical with many different faith backgrounds. "We're not survivors against Obama; we're survivors against abortion."
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