Personhood Mississippi founder Les Riley sent out a statement this morning praising Personhood legislation in the Oklahoma Senate and promising further efforts in Mississippi that will address voters' concerns about contraception and in vitro fertilization.
Follow jfp.ms/personhood for more updates. Here is the statement, verbatim:
Personhood Mississippi Applauds Oklahoma Senate Personhood Vote; Vows to Press on with Improved Personhood Measure
New Albany - The pro-life advocates at Personhood Mississippi were thrilled to learn this week that the Oklahoma State Senate overwhelmingly passed a Personhood Act. The group says they are encouraged to finish the work of stopping abortion, euthanasia, and deadly medical experimentation and reestablishing liberty and justice for all.
The Oklahoma Personhood Act was approved by a vote of 34 to 8 on Wednesday. The bill recognizes the biological fact that life begins conception and affords all unborn children "at every stage of development all the rights, privileges, and immunities available to other persons, citizens, and residents of this state."
The measure, SB 1433, defines the terms "unborn child" and "unborn children" to "include all unborn children or the offspring of human beings from the moment of conception until birth at every stage of biological development." It now heads to the State House where it is expected to pass.
"Even though we may not become the first state to protect every person from our biological beginnings to natural death, the news that Oklahoma's Senate has taken this bold step, and that a dozen or more states are working towards equal protection for all human beings, is a great encouragement to press on," said Personhood Mississippi President Les Riley.
In the last week, there has been a significant amount of media coverage about a new personhood amendment set to be introduced in the state legislature. Many wrongly presumed that this was an effort to controvert the voters by introducing a measure identical to Initiative 26.
However, Personhood Mississippi is strongly rejecting this claim--initially made by national abortion proponents and repeated regularly--that "Mississippi is now a pro-choice state," that "voters have rejected personhood," and that it should not be pursued a second time.
"We are listening to the voters," continued Riley. "Mississippians want to see an end to abortion, but they had concerns about Initiative 26 due primarily to a massive misinformation campaign funded with millions of dollars poured into our state by the world's leading abortionists, Planned Parenthood. In keeping with Governor Barbour's statement that 'life at conception would easily pass the legislature,' we are proposing legislation that will protect the unborn and other helpless human beings while ensuring, specifically, that IVF and non-lethal contraception are exempted."
Riley concluded, "Quitting after a single setback would be unconscionable. There have been tens of millions of children killed and mothers harmed in the 39 years since the question of personhood was left unanswered by the Roe v. Wade decision. And in Mississippi, in just the three months since the election, there have been at least 600 babies killed and 600 women abused in the state's last remaining abortion clinic. Just as the Oklahoma Senate has done, our state will one day offer full legal protection to every person."