Dr. Unruh and Leslee Unruh Endorse Pro-Life Initiative

“If you lose respect for one part of human life, you soon lose respect for every aspect of human life.”   Albert Schweitzer.
Ronald Reagan said, “We must do our duty for generations not yet born.   We cannot proclaim the noble ideal that human life is sacred, then turn our backs on the taking of some 4000 unborn children’s lives every day.   This as a means of birth control must stop.
The values and freedoms we cherish as Americans rest on our fundamental commitment to the sanctity of human life.   The first of the ‘inalienable rights”  affirmed by our Declaration of Independence is the right to life itself,  a right the Declaration states has been endowed by our Creator on all human beings – whether young or old,  weak or strong,  healthy or handicapped.
These children will never laugh, never sing, never experience the joy of human love;  nor will they strive to heal the sick,  or feed the poor,  or make peace among nations.   Abortion has denied them the first and most basic of human rights, and we are infinitely poorer for their loss.
We are poorer not simply for lives not led and for contributions not made, but also for the erosion of our sense of the worth and dignity of every individual.   To diminish the value of one category of human life is to diminish us all.   Slavery, which treated blacks as something less than human, to be bought and sold if convenient, cheapened human life and mocked our dedication to the freedom and equality of all men and women.   Can we say that about abortion – which treats the unborn as something less than human, to be destroyed if convenient – will be less corrosive to the values we hold dear?”
Abortion concerns not just the unborn child; it concerns every one of us.  The English poet, John Donne, wrote:  “Any man’s death diminishes me, because I am involved in mankind; and therefore never send to know for whom the bell tolls;  it tolls for thee,”   We cannot diminish the value of one category of human life – the unborn – without diminishing the value of all human life.  
In South Dakota, at last, the citizens will have an opportunity to express their view on the sanctity of human life of the unborn.   I am convinced that our citizens do not want to play God with the value of human life.   It is not for us to decide who is worthy to live and who is not.   Even the Supreme Court’s opinion in Roe V Wade did not explicitly reject the traditional American idea of intrinsic worth and value of all human life;  it simply dodged the issue.
Prayer and action are now needed to uphold the sanctity of human life.

The famous British member of Parliament William Wilberforce prayed with his small group of influential friends, the “Clapham Sect,” for decades to see an end to slavery in the British Empire.   Wilberforce led that struggle in Parliament, unflaggingly,   because he believed in the sanctity of human life.  He saw the fulfillment of this impossible dream when Parliament outlawed slavery just before his death.   Let his faith and perseverance be our guide.   We will never recognize the true value of our own lives until we affirm the value of others, a value of which Malcolm Muggeridge says:  “However low it flickers or fiercely burns,  it is still Divine flame which no man dare presume to put out,  be his motives ever so humane and enlightened.”  
Thomas Jefferson said the first and only legitimate object of good government is to protect innocent human life.  
As Ronald Reagan said, “Today our nation, economically prosperous, bears a fresh,  dark wound upon its conscience,  a wound created by a stark deviation from the course of our national journey.   Contrary to the purpose of law, to the character of medicine, to the habit of charity, and to the spirit of our founding, abortion has become routinized in America.   No one can mistake abortion for the gentle art of healing.   Each day in our land the promise of life is stolen from thousands of unborn, the first flower of their unique existence crushed forever.   But, as many philosophers have pointed out, the effects of such acts of violence are just as profound on those who perform them as on those who undergo them.
The people of South Dakota as most Americans are a generous and kindhearted people, a people who strive to strengthen and preserve those delicate bonds of affection that unite the human family and give safe harbor to all its members.     We are a people who will not settle for a national policy that each year condemns 1.2 million unborn children to an early death and consigns their mothers to exploitation and emptiness.   We must and we will answer abortion with loving alternatives like adoption, and we will ensure that our laws preserve and protect the innocent unborn from destruction.
In 2008, the people of South Dakota can make a new beginning as a champion of the most basic civil right of all.  We can, as is written in Deuteronomy, choose life, so that we and our descendants may live.
Dr. Allen and Leslee Unruh

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