Personhood: The Pro-Life Movement's Ultimate Goal
The bedrock principle of the pro-life movement - that all preborn babies are "persons" and all innocent people share the inalienable right to life - is the benchmark against which pro-lifers must evaluate any strategy to protect preborn children.
What is Personhood?
What is personhood and why is it so foundational to the pro-life movement? Put simply, a "person" is a human being who is fully protected under the law; and we use the legal term "personhood" to describe this condition. Once a human being is declared a person, that individual is guaranteed certain legal rights.
To better understand personhood, we begin by asking the fundamental question of when human life begins. Embryological science has made crystal clear that, in sexual reproduction, human life begins at fertilization: the union of an egg and sperm resulting in a unique, genetically distinct human being. The answer to the question of when human life begins is a biological one.
The follow-up question is: "Is this tiny embryonic human being a ‘person' who is guaranteed the right to life?" In other words, should human beings be protected in law as persons; as citizens upon whom full constitutional protections (due process, equal protection, etc.) should confer? The answer to the question of personhood is a political/legal one. Once a human being is declared to be a legal person, there simply can be no exceptions to his or her inalienable right to life; just as there are no exceptions to our right to life.
Visit our personhood website by clicking here.
Only by declaring the preborn child a "person" will legal abortion end, whether it is through a U.S. Supreme Court decision, an amendment to the U.S. Constitution, or a congressional bill. The following federal personhood bills provide the educational, legal and political foundation necessary to end abortion in America.
The 112th United States Congress has introduced two pieces of legislation that establish the legal personhood of the preborn child. The bills apply 14th Amendment protections to all human beings from conception.
On January 7, 2011, U.S. Representative Paul Broun (R-GA) introduced House Resolution (H.R.) 212, the Sanctity of Human Life Act. Co-sponsored by 62 representatives, including Paul Ryan of Wisconsin, the bill declares that:
- the right to life guaranteed by the Constitution is vested in each human being, and is t he paramount and most fundamental right of a person; and
- the life of each human being begins with fertilization, cloning, or its functional equivalent, irrespective of sex, health, function or disability, defect, stage of biological development, or condition of dependency, at which time every human being shall have all the legal and constitutional attributes and privileges of personhood.
Click here to view the full text of H.R. 212.
On January 20, 2011, U.S. Representative Duncan Hunter (R-CA) introduced H.R. 374, the Life at Conception Act. U.S. Senator Roger Wicker (R-MS) introduced an identical companion bill, S. 91, in the Senate on January 25. Using slightly different language from H.R. 212, these bills also apply 14th Amendment protections to all human beings from conception. Co-sponsored by 61 representatives and 14 senators, respectively, the bills implement:
- equal protection for the right to life of each born and preborn human person, and pursuant to the duty and authority of the Congress, including Congress' power under article I, section 8, to make necessary and proper laws, and Congress' power under section 5 of the 14th article of amendment to the Constitution of the United States, the Congress hereby declares that the right to life guaranteed by the Constitution is vested in each human being. However, nothing in this Act shall be construed to require the prosecution of any woman for the death of her unborn child.
The bills define the terms "human person" / "human being" to:
- include each and every member of the species homo sapiens at all stages of life, including the moment of fertilization, cloning, or other moment at which an individual member of the human species comes into being.
Click here to view the full text of H.R. 374.
The Sanctity of Human Life Act and the Life at Conception Act are the most inclusive and consistent pro-life bills ever introduced by Congress. Through this legislation, Congress would be establishing personhood from the moment of conception in order to extend the equal protection and due process rights of our constitution to all human beings from the beginning of their lives.
TAKE ACTION NOW!
Please call or email your U.S. Representative and encourage him/her to co-sponsor H.R. 212 and/or H.R. 374. Click here to find out who your U.S. Representative is (go to "Get Involved" and type in your zip code). Then click here for your U.S. Representative's contact information. Or call the U.S. Capitol switchboard at (202) 224-3121.
Please call or email Wisconsin Senators Herb Kohl and Ron Johnson and encourage them to co-sponsor S. 91.
- Contact Senator Herb Kohl: PH: (202) 224-5653, WEB: http://kohl.senate.gov/contact.cfm
- Contact Senator Ron Johnson: PH: (202) 224-5323; WEB: http://ronjohnson.senate.gov/public/index.cfm/contact
For far too long, pro-lifers have limited themselves to protecting a life here and there - passing laws which slightly regulate abortion in the most outrageous cases. But pro-life congressmen can pass a federal personhood bill that would end abortion by using the Constitution instead of amending it.
THE TIME IS NOW TO END LEGALIZED ABORTION
CONTACT YOUR CONGRESSMAN TODAY!!