National Media Watch

Kansas Legislator Admits to Abortion

WICHITA EAGLE, Feb. 24 — Although she hadn’t planned to, Rep. Brenda Landwehr, R-Wichita, publicly revealed during a debate over a bill to regulate abortion clinics that she had had an abortion years ago, reported the Eagle.

While Landwehr’s family was aware of the abortion, her legislative colleagues were not. Landwehr, who is pro-life, has served in the Legislature for 12 years. When she got up to speak, she found herself making the revelation.

“I live with that pain every single day because I killed a baby,” Landwehr said.

Of her public admission, she said, “If it helps just one individual to have a change of heart, it was worth it.”

The abortion occurred before Landwehr became a Catholic 15 years ago.

Cardinal Mahony Seeks Immigration Reform

LOS ANGELES TIMES, March 1 — In an interview with the Times, Los Angeles Cardinal Roger Mahony attacked what he feels is a wave of “hysterical” anti-immigrant sentiment in the United States.

Cardinal Mahony asked all 288 Los Angeles parishes to fast, pray and press for humane immigration policy. Cardinal Mahony also said he would instruct his priests to defy legislation, if approved by Congress, which would require churches to ask immigrants for legal documentation before providing assistance.

“The whole concept of punishing people who serve immigrants is un-American,” said Mahony. “The Church is here to serve people. … We’re not about to become immigration agents.”

But Ira Mehlman of the Federation for American Immigration Reform said that Cardinal Mahony failed to address the costs of illegal immigration, and that he was asking others to give up their jobs and resources for undocumented immigrants.

“Charity is an important tenet of the Judeo-Christian faith,” he said, “but there are limits.”

ACLU Opposes Creation of Catholic Town

MSNBC, Feb. 21 — Howard Simon, executive director of the American Civil Liberties Union, spoke out against Tom Monaghan’s Florida Catholic town Ave Maria on NBC’s “The Situation” with Tucker Carlson.

Simon said he opposes religious groups exercising “governmental power.”

Monaghan has said that Ave Maria would be a place where one would not be able to obtain either pornography or contraception, a practice Carlson compared to “zoning.”

“About 10 years ago … the U.S. Supreme Court correctly ruled that a group of Hasidic Jews in upstate New York, in a town called Kiryat Joel, could not receive government funding because that town was organized around pervasively sectarian religious principles,” said Simon.

“There are rules in every town,” Carlson countered. “You just don’t like this because this is a serious Catholic guy.”