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Michael J. Wolfe Essay Contest Winners
1st place - Shantel Sipiorski, home schooled, freshman
My grandmother’s last picture taken at Sharon Richardson Hospice Center, March 2012.
Over the past few months web posts and news stories about the late Brittany Maynard have described her choice to end her life as “brave” (Walsh). Maynard, who had a gliobastoma multiforme brain tumor, took a prescribed death pill on November 1, 2014 (Karner). From 1997 to 2014, seven hundred fifty-two people have died through physician-assisted suicide made legal by the “Death with Dignity Act” (En.wikipedia.org). But what about those who suffered? What about those who went through years of pain and then died? If they die with pain instead of a pill, are they still dignified? Are the pro-assisted suicide advocates saying that these sufferers are not dignified (Walsh)? Society is being harmed by these thoughts; caring, loving, and respecting them is what shows the sufferers dignity.
Genesis 1:27 says that we are made in “the image of God.” God made life; He gave us value. Value shouldn’t be determined by how young, beautiful, and healthy you are (Omistead). Merriam-webster.com states that dignity is “the quality or state of being worthy, honored,
or esteemed.” We all have dignity and assisted-suicide takes that away because it proclaims that if you suffer it is better to take a pill than to watch yourself deteriorate (Payne).
Suffering is hard to watch and even more so to go through. I watched my grandmother fight colon cancer. I saw the weight loss, the hair falling out, and the decay of a beautiful woman. I loved taking care of my grandma, getting her meals, playing Skip-bo, and just talking with her at her last days at hospice, but the families who have loved ones who chose assisted- suicide will never have the peace of knowing that they did everything they could to care for and love them, only what-ifs and we-should’ves.
Humans need care and love. Without it society will lose its value of life. That is what real dying with dignity is, it’s dying knowing that you have people around you who would drop
anything to get you a pillow or make you tea. In the past, I volunteered to bring cancer patients Christmas and Valentine’s Day cards. Seeing the smile of appreciation on their faces made me wish I could give more of myself. I encourage you to volunteer at your local hospice home or cancer center. Show others that giving honor is what real dignity is.
Works Cited “Assisted Suicide.” En.wikipedia.org. 7 November 2014.
Karner, Maggie. Brain Cancer Will Likely Kill Me, But There’s No Way I’ll Kill Myself. The Federalist, 2014. thefederalist.com. 7 November 2014.
Omistead, Gracy. Don’t Die With Dignity; Die With Grace. The Federalist, 2014. thefederalist.com. 7 November 2014.
Payne, Daniel. Brittany Maynard’s Death Was Not Dignified. The Federalist, 2014. thefederalist.com. 7 November 2014.
Walsh, Matt. There Is Nothing Brave About Suicide. The Blaze, 2014. theblaze.com. 9 October 2014.
Webster, Merriam. Dignity. Merriam-Webster, 2014. 10 November 2014.
2nd place – Peter Streblow, St Mary Springs, sophomore
The War Unnoticed
Throughout history, we see that we are almost constantly in some type of war; whether it is a small skirmish or a world war, we are a world of savagery and bloodshed. We hear of all of these acts of terrorism, and yet we do not acknowledge the war that goes on every day, every minute, and every second: the war on babies.
In the last 40 years alone, worldwide, we have wiped out 1.72 billion lives. This is exceedingly larger than the total number of lives lost in the following atrocities: American Revolution, 50 thousand lives; French Revolution, 40 thousand lives; Civil War 1 million 264 thousand lives; Titanic, 1,517 lives; World War 1, 37 million lives; World War 2, 60 million lives; Vietnam, 430 Thousand lives; 9/11/01, 2,996 lives. The cumulative death toll is 98 million 788 thousand 513 deaths this took 239 years. In just 40 years, abortion has killed 1.72 billion lives.
We call ourselves an evolved society that respects the rights for all. In the inception of our nation, our fathers declared that we have the unalienable rights of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. Although some women use the excuse of rape and incest, only 1 percent of abortions are for this reason. Despite the ugly tragedy of rape, taking the life of a child as recompense for this violent act is not the answer. A baby cannot speak on its own behalf: we must speak for them, with the decision of Roe vs Wade in 1974, that hope of a voice was silenced. They need someone on their behalf to speak for them and stand up for them and their rights. How is it that in a world of equality and rights, an Eagle can take priority over a baby? If you injure or even disturb an eagle, you can go to jail for a year or pay an enormous fine. Yet, the murder of helpless unborn children goes unpunished.
We need to fight for the right of these voiceless babies, do not let them fall into just being a number. When you destroy a baby you not only hurt your child, but you also hurt
yourself your family, your community, your world. Abortion strikes at the very core of the family. A broken family leads to broken and shattered lives. Abortion cannot keep going unnoticed. Make it a priority to let everyone know just how important a baby is. Each abortion takes away an asset to the world that could help make it a better place.
For my part, I will continue to be at the silent protests against abortion. I will also help with the rose sale, and continue sharing my knowledge with others, so that they know what the issues are. I am hoping to participate in the March for Life to be with others to fight for the same cause: the lives of innocent children!
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bald_and_Golden_Eagle_Protection_Act http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/World_War_I_casualties http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/World_War_II_casualties http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/American_Revolutionary_War http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Reign_of_Terror http://www.civilwar.org/education/history/faq/ http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/RMS_Titanic http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vietnam_War_casualties http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Casualties_of_the_September_11_attacks http://www.operationrescue.org/about-abortion/abortions-in-america/ http://www.numberofabortions.com/
3rd place – Chelsea Brooks, Fond du Lac High School, senior
Does anyone know the truth about abortion? Getting the facts will make a difference. Understanding what is going on can help save lots of lives, making excuses is not the way to go.
Many people try to get away with, “It is not a baby. It is only a bundle of tissues.” That is one point where they are wrong. At day twenty the embryo is the size of an apple seed. The umbilical cord and placenta are present and the foundations for the brain, nervous system and spinal cord are underway. The mother most likely will not know she is pregnant. Day twenty-one, three weeks, the heart begins to beat. Day twenty-eight muscles are forming. Arms, legs, ears and eyes are showing and hair is sprouting. Day thirty the heart is pumping large quantities of blood through the system. Day thirty-five separate fingers can be seen on the hand, the baby is the size of a raspberry. After forty days brain waves can be detected. Week six the liver takes over production of blood cells. The brain starts to control muscle movement and organs. The nose is noticeable. Week seven the jaw forms and teeth form in the gums. Eyelids seal to protect the eyes. Week eight the baby is a little more than an inch long, and everything is present that would be found in a fully developed adult. The kidneys are functioning, the stomach produces digestive juices and the genitals are forming. Week nine fingerprints are evident in the skin. Fingernails and hair are present. Week ten the baby can bend, open hands, make fists, lift its head, swallow and wrinkle its forehead. Week twelve the baby sleeps, breaths amniotic fluids, and opens and closes its mouth. Week thirteen sexual differentiation is apparent. Week sixteen the baby is usually eight to ten inches in length and weighs a half pound. Now is about when women begin to
show. The baby’s ears are functioning and can hear the mother’s voice and heartbeat. Week seventeen the baby rolls, kicks, sucks its fingers and is learning to swallow. Week eighteen is usually when the mother feels small movements. Five months the mother should feel stronger movement and the baby may jump in reaction to loud sounds. Month six oil and sweat glands function. The baby can be born and could survive with proper care. Month seven the baby can use the sense of hearing, vision, taste and touch. The baby can recognize many voices. Week twenty-nine the baby can see light through the walls of the womb. Week thirty-four the umbilical cord is about twenty inches long. Week thirty-five the baby’s head can drop into the pelvis, usually the uterus will begin small contractions called Braxton-Hicks. Month nine the baby’s heart is pumping three hundred gallons of blood per day, the baby is fully capable of life outside the womb.
Does anyone know the truth about abortion? More importantly, know the truth about pregnancy. Get the facts, don’t just assume what you hear is always correct.
Having a baby at any stage in life can be difficult. Going through a lot of stress does not help the process at all. If the baby is conceived by rape or incest that does not mean the baby is any less important than if someone chose to have a baby. The steps of life are the same, and that unborn child has a right to life. For the most part people assume that by ‘getting rid’ of the baby will in fact help the victim get over what has happened to her. That is not the case, both mother and child are helped by preserving that life. Approximately seventy percent of women believe abortion is wrong, even if
they believe others should be able to have their own legal choice. Approximately seventy percent of pregnant rape victims believe abortion would be another act of violence against their bodies. Research shows that after an abortion it is common for women to have depression, guilt, and lowered self-esteem. Research also shows that after a woman is raped it is common for her to have depression, guilt, and lowered self- esteem. Getting rid of the pregnancy is hiding the problem. Studies have shown that in some cases of incest the victim views the pregnancy as a way out of the situation. The birth of the child will expose the sexual activity that has been happening and can put an end to it. In incest cases the victim may be coerced into the abortion by the abuser because that would hide what has happened, and nothing would change. That’s what the abuser wants. The abortion of that baby will only solve the abuser’s problem of getting caught. The victim is not only being robbed of being a mother, she is being handed back to her abuser and concealing a crime.
Does anyone know the truth about abortion? The truth is abortion is wrong. Abortion hurts. Abortion does not help a woman in a crisis pregnancy. Abortion does not take away the hurt and depression of rape or incest. Abortion only makes everything worse and destroys the life of the baby. I belong to a pro-life teen group where I get training and education to help spread the truth. I want to make sure everyone learns the truth about abortion.
Next Regular Monthly Meeting February 3, 2015 6:30 - 8:00 pm
St. Agnes Hospital, lower level (near cafeteria)
All persons interested in advancing the right to life movement are cordially invited to attend. Call 921-5517 for more information. Email email@example.com
Our Mission: "To make euthanasia, infanticide, abortion, and destruction of human embryos socially, ethically, and legally unacceptable solutions to human problems and to promote positive alternatives to each of these acts."
"But I feel that the greatest destroyer of peace today is abortion, because it is a war against the child - a direct killing of the innocent child ...
How do we persuade a woman not to have an abortion?
As always, we must persuade her with love, and we remind ourselves that love means to be willing to give until it hurts. Jesus gave even his life to love us. So the mother who is thinking of abortion, should be helped to love - that is, to give until it hurts her plans, or her free time, to respect the life of her child. The father of that child, whoever he is, must also give until it hurts. . ." MOTHER TERESA
SEE PIX OF THE 2014 MARCH FOR LIFE RALLY - GO TO TEENS 4 LIFE