Not Now, Jody

One of a continuing series

Chapter Two

As mentioned, I’m spending some time reviewing  It’s Now Or Never: A Call to Reclaim America by Georgia Congressman Jody Hice. Go back to the initial post to get my overview of the book and the lowdown on the front matter. I’m reviewing the book a chapter at a time. These reviews comprise taking quotations from the book and providing appropriate comment. This is Chapter Two, titled “Bigger Than Life.” Here’s how it starts:

No doubt you are very concerned with the direction of our nation or you would not be reading this book. More than likely, among other key issues, you believe in the sanctity of life.

Dr. Jody Hice (2012-01-13). It’s Now Or Never: A Call to Reclaim America (p. 40). WestBowPress. Kindle Edition.

Actually, I’m reading this book because I promised to review it and to post the review on the Skeptical Analysis blog. A lot of this chapter seems to be concerned with the matter of abortion rights (or not) in this country. Congressman Hice cites some pertinent statistics:

I must state the obvious in no uncertain terms. We are in a life and death struggle! Since the legalization of abortion in 1973, America has averaged about 1.2 million abortions per year.

Dr. Jody Hice (2012-01-13). It’s Now Or Never: A Call to Reclaim America (pp. 40-41). WestBowPress. Kindle Edition.

These numbers are in line with my own Internet research. Hice wants to take additional issue with these numbers:

A child is multiple-times more likely to die in the womb than are American soldiers in combat.

Dr. Jody Hice (2012-01-13). It’s Now Or Never: A Call to Reclaim America (p. 42). WestBowPress. Kindle Edition.

This is true and even more so. The womb is a dangerous place for human life, abortion notwithstanding.

A miscarriage is the loss of a baby before the 20th week of pregnancy.

According to the March of Dimes, as many as 50% of all pregnancies end in miscarriage — most often before a woman misses a menstrual period or even knows she is pregnant. About 15% of recognized pregnancies will end in a miscarriage.

More than 80% of miscarriages occur within the first three months of pregnancy. They are less likely to occur after 20 weeks’ gestation; if they do, they are called late miscarriages.

So Congressman Hice’s statement has little meaning taken by itself. What matters to the congressman and to a number of other politicians, as well as a vast number of genuinely-concerned voters, is artificially induced abortions. A little research shows this (from Guttmacher Institute):

  • Half of pregnancies among American women are unintended, and about four in 10 of these end in abortion.
  • About half of American women will have an unintended pregnancy, and nearly 3 in 10 will have an abortion, by age 45.
  • The overall U.S. unintended pregnancy rate increased slightly between 1994 and 2008, but unintended pregnancy increased 55% among poor women, while decreasing 24% among higher-income women.
  • Overall, the abortion rate decreased 8% between 2000 and 2008, but abortion increased 18% among poor women, while decreasing 28% among higher-income women.
  • Some 1.06 million abortions were performed in 2011, down from 1.21 million abortions in 2008, a decline of 13%.
  • The number of U.S. abortion providers declined 4% between 2008 (1,793) and 2011 (1,720). The number of clinics providing abortion services declined 1%, from 851 to 839. Eighty-nine percent of all U.S. counties lacked an abortion clinic in 2011; 38% of women live in those counties.
  • Nine in 10 abortions occur in the first 12 weeks of pregnancy.
  • A broad cross section of U.S. women have abortions:

58% are in their 20s;

61% have one or more children;

56% are unmarried and not cohabiting;

69% are economically disadvantaged; and

73% report a religious affiliation.

Guttmacher Institute has additional information of interest. First New York:

In New York, 441,800 of the 4,044,241 women of reproductive age became pregnant in 2011. 55% of these pregnancies resulted in live births and 31% in induced abortions.

Then Pennsylvania:

In Pennsylvania, 212,400 of the 2,434,698 women of reproductive age became pregnant in 2011. 67% of these pregnancies resulted in live births and 17% in induced abortions.

And now Georgia, Congressman Hice’s home state:

In Georgia, 197,300 of the 2,077,660 women of reproductive age became pregnant in 2011. 67% of these pregnancies resulted in live births and 18% in induced abortions.

I picked Georgia out of the database as a starter. Then I picked New York and Pennsylvania as not representative of Georgia’s religiosity. Notoriously secular New York does lead in induced abortions. Pennsylvania, no semblance to a red-neck state, would appear more averse to abortion. Georgia, maybe not the buckle of the Bible Belt but a contender for the “hangy-down,” has less discomfort with abortion than the more cosmopolitan Pennsylvania. Is it possible that Bible thumping and “respect for life” do not strongly track?

Additional searching does show a correlation between region and acceptance for abortion. New York, New Jersey and Connecticut lead over Texas, Mississippi and Georgia. Readers are invited run down the stats and determine for themselves whether (presumed) religiosity inoculates against disrespect for life.

Additional data put into light some of the congressman’s subsequent statements:

Since 1973, abortion has reduced the black population by over 25 percent!

Dr. Jody Hice (2012-01-13). It’s Now Or Never: A Call to Reclaim America (p. 42). WestBowPress. Kindle Edition.

This is a little bit of fiction by the congressman. The truth is that in 1970 the black population of the United States was 22,580,289. As of 2012 it was 44,456,009. That’s hardly a 25 percent reduction. It’s politics entering into a discussion of serious issues.

As everyone knows, Planned Parenthood operates the nation’s largest chain of abortion clinics. What you may not know is that almost 80 percent of its facilities are located in minority neighborhoods.

Dr. Jody Hice (2012-01-13). It’s Now Or Never: A Call to Reclaim America (p. 43). WestBowPress. Kindle Edition.

Without checking the facts, I’m going to assume Congressman Hice’s statistics are accurate on this count. And the reason “almost 80 percent of its facilities are located in minority neighborhoods” is …? I will leave it to readers to come up with the answer.

Congressman Hice also gets into some real issues with the Planned Parenthood organization.

The mission of Live Action started when Lila, then a student at UCLA, began posing as a 15 year old who was pregnant as the result of a relationship with a much older boyfriend. With a hidden audio recorder, she would enter a Planned Parenthood clinic and explain the scenario. Her intent was to discover how Planned Parenthood would react to a statutory rape case.

Dr. Jody Hice (2012-01-13). It’s Now Or Never: A Call to Reclaim America (p. 43). WestBowPress. Kindle Edition.

There is little doubt on the surface that Planned Parenthood staffers acted inappropriately in many of the situations caught on video. Specifically, they did not immediately refuse to cooperate with the fake sex offender and with the fake pimp. No prosecutions came from these cases, since there was, in fact, no criminal activity involved. The child rapist was a fake, and the pimp was a fake.

In February 2011, Rose released undercover videos from Planned Parenthood facilities in several cities. These show an unidentified man and woman posing as a pimp and a prostitute, soliciting advice from Planned Parenthood staff on how to procure abortions and birth control for underage sex workers whom the pimp “manages.” Rose said that the videos proved that Planned Parenthood intentionally breaks laws and covers up abuse. In response to the videos, Planned Parenthood claimed to have reported the incidents to the FBI but also stated that over 11,000 staffers “who have contact with patients and teens” would be “retrained.” Planned Parenthood also claimed to have reported to the FBI at least 12 visits to its clinics by the man in the videos prior to their publication.

No criminal charges or investigations resulted from the videos. Rose asked Ken Cuccinelli, then the attorney general of Virginia, to investigate Planned Parenthood as a result of the videos. He conceded during a Fox interview that he lacks “an actual case of it on film” – meaning a case that involves victims instead of actors pretending to run a sex-slave business. Cuccinelli went on to say, “But what you do have is clearly an open willingness of several organizations, meaning subsidiaries of Planned Parenthood nationally in the same category, sex trafficking of minors, and an open willingness to participate in this.”

Some of this has been previously covered by Skeptical Analysis:

O’Keefe even went one better. In his final releases he showed himself dressed in a classic 1970s pimp garb, but not in the offices he visited, where he wore a business suit.

Even though government investigations found no illegal activity on the part of ACORN or its employees, there was immediate reaction from conservative media and politicians. Federal ties to the organization were cut, and ACORN’s government funding was not withheld. The organization closed down in 2010.

Chapter Two does not dwell exclusively on the anti-abortion issue:

Today, we are being ordered to comply with a host of ridiculous government requirements. For example, we are being told that only non-reproducing GMO (genetically modified) seeds can be used in our gardens. What authority does the government have to tell you what kind of seeds to use? They are telling us what kind of light bulbs to use and which toilets to use.

Dr. Jody Hice (2012-01-13). It’s Now Or Never: A Call to Reclaim America (pp. 47-48). WestBowPress. Kindle Edition.

The government requirement that I use GMO seeds in my garden has yet to be handed down to me by my local Kommissar. I will await further instructions before launching into a discussion of that. The matter of light bulbs is another matter. Here is what Wikipedia has to say on the matter:

In December 2007, the federal government enacted the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007, which contains legislation to make incandescent light bulbs more efficient by setting maximum wattage requirements for all general service Incandescent light bulbs producing 310–2600 lumens of light. Light bulbs outside of this range are exempt from the restrictions. Also exempt are several classes of specialty lights, including appliance lamps, rough service bulbs, 3-way, colored lamps, stage lighting, plant lights, candelabra lights under 60 watts, outdoor post lights less than 100 watts, nightlights and shatter resistant bulbs. This effectively banned the manufacturing or importing of most incandescent bulbs of that time.

The timeline for these standards was to start in January 2012, but on 16 December 2011, the U.S. House passed the final 2012 budget legislation, which effectively delayed the implementation until October 2012.

The United States Environmental Protection Agency‘s Energy Star program in March 2008 established rules for labeling lamps that meet a set of standards for efficiency, starting time, life expectancy, color, and consistency of performance. The intent of the program is to reduce consumer concerns about efficient light bulbs due to variable quality of products. Those CFLs with a recent Energy Star certification start in less than one second and do not flicker. Energy Star Light Bulbs for Consumers is a resource for finding and comparing Energy Star qualified lamps.

By 2020, a second tier of restrictions would become effective, which requires all general-purpose bulbs to produce at least 45 lumens per watt (similar to current CFLs). Exemptions from the Act include reflector flood, 3-way, candelabra, colored, and other specialty bulbs.

In 2011, Republican House members introduced a Better Use of Light Bulbs Act or BULB Act (H.R. 91), which would have repealed Subtitle B of Title III of the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007. H.R. 2417 failed to pass in the U.S. House.

In 2014 the spending bill proposed by the House would block the energy efficiency standards in the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007, which would have made incandescent light bulbs obsolete.

What is so curious about all of this is how it relates to Congressman Hice’s earlier position. If people followed the Judeo-Christian lifestyle there would be less need for government oversight. I’m right now searching for what our Judeo-Christian heritage has to say about conserving natural resources and reducing carbon dioxide emissions.

Here is what Skeptical Analysis had to say about the matter:

If only there were any substance to it. Let’s take a look at some reality. A quick visit to Home Depot reveals the following:

$6.97 / package:
$8.97 / case:

What happened to the $6.34 each for CFLs? Where did that price come from? How long did it take the person composing the little ditty above to come up with such a number? It could have taken a while. Writing fiction can be tedious. How about the $0.42 each for incandescents? Let me know where I can get them. Home Depot has its own price:

Model # 60A/RVL-6PK
$8.77 / package

The congressman puts a practical focus on his agenda:

In addition to the legal reasons, there are also economic grounds for defunding Planned Parenthood. With our nation on the verge of economic collapse and in desperate need of implementing budgetary cuts, there is not better a place to start.

Dr. Jody Hice (2012-01-13). It’s Now Or Never: A Call to Reclaim America (p. 48). WestBowPress. Kindle Edition.

Yes, defund Planned Parenthood and slash the budget. I find that very interesting.

MilitaryExpenditures-512

More interesting quotes from Chapter Two:

Finally, there is the issue of forcing taxpayers to fund something so contentious.

Dr. Jody Hice (2012-01-13). It’s Now Or Never: A Call to Reclaim America (p. 49). WestBowPress. Kindle Edition.

Yes, that is a problem.

Photo from Google Images by The New York Times

Photo from Google Images by The New York Times

Mat Staver is founder of Liberty Counsel and Dean of Liberty University School of Law. On his Freedom’s Call radio program in March of 2011, Staver commented that about 70% of all abortions in America are from professing Christians.

Dr. Jody Hice (2012-01-13). It’s Now Or Never: A Call to Reclaim America (p. 50). WestBowPress. Kindle Edition.

See above statistics on abortions.

EvolutionsFamilyTree-ScienceForDummies

I knew it! I knew it. Congressman Hice was sooner or later bound to touch on the topic of biological evolution:

We can try to blame Hollywood, the video-game industry, the music industry or evolutionary teaching within the classroom. Ultimately, the blame lies with us.

Dr. Jody Hice (2012-01-13). It’s Now Or Never: A Call to Reclaim America (p. 50). WestBowPress. Kindle Edition.

The lesson is, teach science in the classrooms, and you are asking for trouble.

The congressman’s insight in some instances is absolutely breathtaking:

How remarkable that so many have been duped into believing that our Founders actually intended the right to kill babies to be in the Constitution, but protection for life is not. No! That concept was unquestionably invented and has been judicially forced upon us. Abortion is clearly unconstitutional!

Dr. Jody Hice (2012-01-13). It’s Now Or Never: A Call to Reclaim America (p. 53). WestBowPress. Kindle Edition.

Along with Congressman Hice, I too have noticed the numerous references to abortion in the Constitution.

In a section titled “The Holy Scriptures,” Congressman Hice has something of significance to remark:

Secondly, we should never be ashamed or shy about using Scripture to defend the issue of life.

Dr. Jody Hice (2012-01-13). It’s Now Or Never: A Call to Reclaim America (p. 54). WestBowPress. Kindle Edition.

Yes, we should consult the holy scriptures when considering the value of human life:

Deuteronomy 13:13-18 King James Version (KJV)

13 Certain men, the children of Belial, are gone out from among you, and have withdrawn the inhabitants of their city, saying, Let us go and serve other gods, which ye have not known;

14 Then shalt thou enquire, and make search, and ask diligently; and, behold, if it be truth, and the thing certain, that such abomination is wrought among you;

15 Thou shalt surely smite the inhabitants of that city with the edge of the sword, destroying it utterly, and all that is therein, and the cattle thereof, with the edge of the sword.

16 And thou shalt gather all the spoil of it into the midst of the street thereof, and shalt burn with fire the city, and all the spoil thereof every whit, for theLord thy God: and it shall be an heap for ever; it shall not be built again.

17 And there shall cleave nought of the cursed thing to thine hand: that the Lordmay turn from the fierceness of his anger, and shew thee mercy, and have compassion upon thee, and multiply thee, as he hath sworn unto thy fathers;

18 When thou shalt hearken to the voice of the Lord thy God, to keep all his commandments which I command thee this day, to do that which is right in the eyes of the Lord thy God.

Congressman Hice is correct, readers, in reminding us to consult the scriptures when considering political options and when promoting people to public office.

Coming up next: Chapter Three, “Marriage: It’s Not About Love.” Bound to be interesting.

Keep reading. And may Jesus have mercy on your soul.

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3 thoughts on “Not Now, Jody

  1. Reason Planned Parenthood locates in poorer neighborhoods, 1. Rents cheaper and 2. Since 97% of their business is non abortion related women’s healthcare services aimed at poorer women, it would seem natural for them to locate near their clientele.

    • Helen is the first to respond with the correct answer. Helen is the first to respond. Id is possible nobody but Helen is reading this post. The answer was so obvious, I am amazed I was not flooded with correct answers withing five minutes.

  2. Pingback: Not Now, Jody | Skeptical Analysis

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