Why is the Orthodox Church silent on this? Why aren’t the Orthodox bishops taking a public stand against FOCA and Obama’s abortionist policies?
NCR | JOHN L. ALLEN JR. | Nov. 13, 2008
America’s Catholic bishops have been talking about abortion and politics at least since the 1973 Roe v. Wade decision, but their discussion this week in Baltimore had a special sense of urgency – driven by what many bishops and their pro-life advisors regard as a looming nightmare scenario under the new Obama administration in the “Freedom of Choice Act,” or FOCA.
Candidate Obama pledged to support the Freedom of Choice Act, which was first introduced in congress in 2004 but to date has not made it out of the committee stage. It acknowledges a “fundamental right” to abortion during the first trimester of pregnancy and at subsequent stages for health reasons. It would also bar discrimination in the exercise of the right “in the regulation or provision of benefits, facilities, services or information.”
In effect, FOCA could undo most, or even all, of the existing restrictions on abortion under a patchwork of state and federal laws. Experts say that around the country there are currently some 300 such restrictions, including parental notification laws, waiting periods, requirements of full disclosure of the physical and emotional risks inherent in abortion, and limits on partial birth abortion.