The present-day advancement of the culture of death is neither untouchable nor final – it can be stopped and reversed if politicians, who respect human dignity and the value of life articulate it assertively, intelligently and boldly. Or, in other words: the defense of life can advance even in the worst scenarios if there is political will and proactive realism. The proof of this are the two cases presented in the most recent edition of the Transatlantic Dialogues webinar series of Political Network for Values (PNfV): the Heartbeat Bill from Iowa, United States, and the abolition of eugenic abortion in Poland.
In the digital colloquium held on May 28 under the title “Political advancements protecting human life: two successful experience”, Amy Sinclair, Republican State Senator from Iowa, explained the origin, development and consequences of the innovative law that restricts abortion in her state from the moment the heartbeat of the fetus can be detected. Despite being blocked by a local court, it generated a domino effect that reached another 12 states and reached the doors of the US Supreme Court as well. Piotr Uściński (PiS), member of the Lower House of the Polish Parliament and President of the Parliamentary Group for Life and Family, detailed the reasons that led 119 legislators from three parties to present an appeal to the Polish Constitutional Court in order to eliminate the main legal cause of abortion in the country.
Neither of the initiatives completely prohibits abortion, yet both achieved the greatest possible good in their own circumstances. In Iowa, for the law to pass in the Senate it was necessary to include some exceptions and focus on the protection of the baby, not on his dignity, but on a fact that conquered the required majority: the fetal heartbeat, under the logic of where a heart beats, there is life. In Poland, facing the impossibility of passing laws limiting abortion in Parliament, they rather prosecuted one of the three causes of legal abortion. One may ask, then why not all of them? Because the chance that the challenge would be rejected when contesting all was very high. So, they opted for the motion of unconstitutionality of eugenic abortions, which was the reason for 9 out of 10 abortions in the country.
Both Senator Sinclair and MP Uściński stressed that they consider any intentional abortion a crime and explained that the two initiatives should be seen as a part of the process that seeks the full recognition of the right to life. The results are: today, Iowa is one of the states with the strictest regulations on abortion in the United States, and Poland is one of the countries with the greatest limitations on this practice in the European Union.
In the dialogue after the presentations by Senator Sinclair and MP Uściński, Ángela Gandra, Brazilian State Secretary of the Family reported two bills that the government of President Bolsonaro will present to Congress: one establishes the National Day of Unborn Children and Abortion Risks Awareness, and another creates National Day of Responsible Parenthood.
Also taking the floor were María Rosario Guerra, Colombian Senator, Lourdes Méndez Monasterio, Member of the Spanish Lower House; Cristina Fiore Viñuales, Member of the Salta Province Lower House, in Argentina; Diego Garcia, Congressman and President of the Parliamentary Front for Life and the Family in the Federal Congress of Brazil; Jude Njomo, Member of the National Assembly of Kenya; Jorge Pinheiro, Councilor of Fortaleza, Brazil, and Felipe Ross, Councilor of the Commune of Vitacura, Chile.
More than 18 political representatives participated in the event (including the Spanish Georgina Trías, Member of the Spanish Lower House, Gador Joya, Deputy of the Madrid Assembly; Carmen Domínguez, co-founder of the Republican Party in Chile, Egidijus Vareikis, diplomat from Lithuania, José Chaverri, diplomat from Costa Rica, and Luis Peral, former Spanish Senator, and 50 citizen leaders from 17 countries in Africa, America and Europe: Argentina, Belgium, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Ecuador, Spain, United States, Hungary, Kenya, Lithuania, Mexico, Panama, Paraguay, Peru and Poland.
[ Summary under development ]