"What more dramatic confirmation could we have of the real issue than the Baby Doe case in Bloomington, Indiana? The death of that tiny infant tore at the hearts of all Americans because the child was undeniably a live human being — one lying helpless before the eyes of the doctors and the eyes of the nation. The real issue for the courts was not whether Baby Doe was a human being. The real issue was whether to protect the life of a human being who had Down's Syndrome, who would probably be mentally handicapped, but who needed a routine surgical procedure to unblock his esophagus and allow him to eat. A doctor testified to the presiding judge that, even with his physical problem corrected, Baby Doe would have a "non-existent" possibility for "a minimally adequate quality of life" — in other words, that retardation was the equivalent of a crime deserving the death penalty. The judge let Baby Doe starve and die, and the Indiana Supreme Court sanctioned his decision.
Federal law does not allow federally-assisted hospitals to decide that Down's Syndrome infants are not worth treating, much less to decide to starve them to death. Accordingly, I have directed the Departments of Justice and HHS to apply civil rights regulations to protect handicapped newborns. All hospitals receiving federal funds must post notices which will clearly state that failure to feed handicapped babies is prohibited by federal law. The basic issue is whether to value and protect the lives of the handicapped, whether to recognize the sanctity of human life. This is the same basic issue that underlies the question of abortion. . .
The real question today is not when human life begins, but, What is the value of human life? The abortionist who reassembles the arms and legs of a tiny baby to make sure all its parts have been torn from its mother's body can hardly doubt whether it is a human being. The real question for him and for all of us is whether that tiny human life has a God-given right to be protected by the law — the same right we have."
President Ronald Reagan, 1983
"Killing a disabled infant is not morally equivalent to killing a person." Princeton University bioethicist Peter Singer, May 20, 2009
A Personhood Amendment would be the first step in establishing ethical paramenters that protect human dignity in the 21st century.
On Tuesday, July 15, 2008 Forsyth county placed a non-binding resolution on the ballot that allowed the voters of the 8th fastest growing county in the nation to express their opinion on the following question,
“Do you support an amendment to the Georgia State Constitution so as to provide that the paramount right to life is vested in each human being from the moment of fertilization until a natural death?”
64% of the voters said yes!
What will your county decide?
On Tuesday, July 20th, 2010 your county will get the chance to answer this same question. Help us in encouraging all Georgians to get out and vote for all human life to be valued.
This ballot initiative will send a message to the Georgia legislature that the people of Georgia want to vote on a Personhood Amendment in 2012.
Two important pro-life objectives would be affected by this amendment to our state Constitution. It establishes and affirms in principle that Georgia is a 'pro-life' state that seeks to protect all human life from its earliest moment of development as a matter of constitutional law; and it provides a direct challenge to the central holding of Roe v. Wade.
The adoption of the Personhood Amendment and its positive pro-life effect is not limited to the issue of abortion, but would restore respect and effective legal protection for ALL human beings from the first moment of biological development until natural death. This would include the elderly, infirm, disabled and all other stages of human dependency and vulnerability. If we fail in our efforts define personhood then the following classes of humans will be at risk in the 21st century and will be labeled:
• Pre-Persons (Preborn)
• Post-Persons (The elderly infirm)
• Non-Persons (infant with disabilities)
• Un-Persons (Human-animal hybrids)
So, when did you become a person?
Was it at 65 or 18? How about at 2nd grade or maybe when you could walk? Maybe it was sooner.
This is the crux of The Personhood Amendment which is based on 2007's Georgia House Resolution 536 and 2009's HR 5 sponsored by Rep. Martin Scott and co-sponsored by Reps Byrd (20th), Everson (106th), Mills (25th), Crawford (16th) and Rice (51st). In short, the Personhood Amendment states that "the paramount right to life is vested in each human being from the moment of fertilization without regard to age, race, sex, health, function or condition of dependency. The right to life is the paramount and most fundamental right of a person."
The entire Roe vs. Wade argument pivots on the definition of personhood. In the decision written by Justice Harry Blackmun, he stated, "(If the) suggestion of personhood [of the preborn] is established, the [abortion rights] case, of course, collapses, for the fetus' right to life is then guaranteed specifically by the [14th] Amendment."
On July 20th, the voters of over 45 liberal and conservative Georgia counties across the state will have an opportunity to weigh-in. Local Georgia Right to Life (GRTL) chapters approached Democrat and Republican Party County Chairmen to request that they place a "Party question" on their respective ballots. Over 45 Party chairs responded by requesting their local Election Board to certify the question for the July Primary. The Party question on the ballots will serve as a straw poll of voters on the issue of when life begins.
In 2011, GRTL will use the results of the ballot to lobby the Georgia Legislature to place a constitutional amendment on the 2012 general election ballot. A super-majority of each chamber of the Georgia General Assembly is required to place the Personhood Amendment on the ballot. Once placed on the ballot, it would require a majority vote from the citizens of Georgia (50% plus 1 vote) for the item's passage.
If Georgia adopts the Personhood Amendment, the state will remain one of the most pro-life states in the nation.
So, we ask again. When did you become a person?
The following counties will have the Personhood question on your ballot on the Republican ballot on July 20, 2010:
Appling, Bacon, Banks, Bartow, Brantley, Bulloch, Burke, Butts (Republican and Democrat ballots), Carroll, Chatham, Cherokee, Clayton, Coffee, Colquitt, DeKalb, Dooly, Fannin, Fulton, Glynn, Gordon, Gwinnett, Hall, Hart, Jackson, Jasper, Jeff Davis, Jones, Lamar, Liberty, Lowndes, Murray, Muscogee, Paulding, Pickens, Pierce, Spalding, Thomas, Tift, Towns, Troup, Twigs, Union, Walker, Walton, Ware, Wilcox, and Worth.
For detailed information on the Personhood Amendment