Friday, February 29, 2008

The Middle of Nowhere

Murdo, SD

At the last minute (Thursday of last week) my friend Steve Hickey in Sioux Falls, SD called with an off-the-wall offer. Pastor Steve is the leading voice to the Church of South Dakota concerning the issue of abortion. He and his entire church have devoted themselves to seeing the decree of death overturned in their state and the nation.

A little history. In 2006, South Dakota legislature passed an all-out ban on abortion. Now don't jump to conclusions. Reject any impulse to dismiss what I just said as the actions of poorly-informed, deeply religious, simple folk. The South Dakota elected officials created a task force that studied the issue of abortion for two years evaluating evidence from every conceivable angle. An impactful piece of information that emerged and found profound relevance in the debate is the fact that Abortion Hurts Women. What was that? Yes, contrary to what you've been told, abortion hurts women. I will try to expound on that statement at a later date.

The ultimate result was the the state legislature found conclusive evidence that was contrary to the six presuppositions on which Roe v. Wade was established. Governor Mike Rounds signed the abortion ban legislation into law which directly challenged the federal guarantee of abortion access. This created a fire storm. Pro-Abortion advocates quickly mobilized to gather signatures to force the law to popular vote, which was then struck down in November of 2006. However, 44% of the state of South Dakota was willing to cast their vote to ban abortion in every instance. The message is clear here in the heartland–Life is Sacred.

Fast forward to today. Once again the courageous people of SD are mobilizing in defense of the defenseless. Right now a signature campaign is well under way to bring a new ballot initiative to voter in November of this year. What's different? This new initiative "listens" to what the voters of 2006 said. Built into this measure are exceptions for rape, incest and the health of the mother. It's not a perfect piece of legislation, but it will effectively abolish abortion as a means of birth control. This is exactly what the people of South Dakota asked for. It is exactly what the voters want.

So here I am in Murdo, SD. Not much here. It's a overnight stop on a whirlwind 12-city tour across the state to mobilize pro-life pastors to collect signatures. Time is short for this leg of the campaign, but we're excited and filled with hope. There has been an overwhelming positive response. We're speaking directly with the men and women that have access to entire buildings full of people that know right from wrong. Steve fights my battles; I fight his.

Please pray for the Church of South Dakota. There's a manipulative effort that's being waged to lull the people to sleep on this issue. Steve calls it "Planned Parenthood's Propaganda Ploy" (nice alliteration). I think its nothing less than spiritual propaganda. They're telling everyone, "The people of South Dakota are tired." It's not true. That's not what we're seeing out here on the wind-swept plains. People are pretty fired up contrary to popular belief. But you know how it goes. If someone comes up to you and says, "Hey, you look tired." Suddenly you start thinking, "Yeah, I am kinda tired." Next thing you know a tiny yawn slips out. It's propaganda! And the salt-of-the-earth people we're meeting are buying it.


Jeremy said...

The Argus Leader, a local Sioux Falls SD Newspaper, ran a story about the tour. I know the writer and believe the story told both sides very well, but just to see how tied us South Dakotians are, I checked out the comments to the story, one day after the story ran there were 15 pages of comments.

I don't care what PP says, I don't see anyone acting tired around here.

Anonymous said...

Could you clarify what would be an ideal legislation? I'm assuming you would favor an exception for the health of the mother? Thanks! CBB

Matt Lockett said...

By ideal, I'm referring to the fact that many prolife folks believe that a rape baby is still a baby. That comment will usually get heads nodding yes. I believe the closest anyone has come to legislation that embraces that perspective is the 2006 South Dakota Referred Law 6. You can look probably still look that up for its details. For a legal view where things are today..." flashvars="viewkey=27ccdfee878baddd3ac0"

Liz said...

Glad you are out there, Matt. This one's gonna be a winner.