The debate over the South Dakota abortion ban that voters will either approve or reject Tuesday might best be defined by an American Indian woman named Mabel Two Lance.
She told a South Dakota newspaper, "In our culture, [we] put children No. 1."
That, in a nutshell, is what South Dakota voters will be asked to consider.
Finally, a state is bold enough to try and stop abortion on demand.
It's about time.
Referred Law 6 is a statewide ballot measure that, if passed, would create one of the nation's strictest anti-abortion laws. It would become a felony for a South Dakota doctor to perform abortions except to prevent the death of a pregnant woman.
Americans have seen an awful lot of real life-and-death scenarios since Roe vs. Wade became the law of the land.
Besides legal abortions, we have witnessed the senseless killings of crime victims, the deaths of innocent civilians at the hands of terrorists, murder depicted in a variety of methods in movies and TV shows, and even the state-ordered killing of a woman named Terri Schiavo in Florida.
We wallow in a culture of death.
It's a culture that rejects life and all its promise. People solve traffic disputes with a bullet to the brain. Mothers drown their babies in the bathtub or drive them off a boat ramp into a chilly lake. And yes, mothers can march down to the local abortion clinic and have their pregnancy terminated.
When Michael J. Fox campaigns for a candidate who supports the federal funding of embryonic stem-cell research, he forgets about the millions of us taxpaying Americans who believe that life begins at conception.
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