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March of Dimes

Since January 1976, RLM has adopted a non-support policy toward March of Dimes. This was adopted only after a three-year study of March of Dimes (M.O.D.) activities and publications and after a high level meeting with M.O.D. national and state officers.

The crux of our difference is the amniocentesis testing for “defective” babies in utero which M.O.D. sponsors and promotes.  Such tests cannot be made before the 14th to 18th weeks of pregnancy and take an additional four to six weeks for results.  Between 95% and 100% of the “defectives” thus identified are destroyed in second trimester abortions.  An additional 1% of babies tested are miscarried as a result of the test.

These figures are taken from two studies done by or assisted by M.O.D. in 1975 and 1979. Whenever treatment can take place in the womb, Right to Life of Michigan supports and encourages it (ex: RH babies), but the overwhelming majority of defects tested for have no known treatment or cure.

M.O.D. at no time has directly funded abortions, but it has inaugurated a massive nationwide movement whose aim is to make amniocentesis testing a customary medical procedure in mid trimester pregnancy. It has become our personal experience in recent years that pregnant women, especially in their mid-30’s, are being pressured by their doctors to have the test. We see this as a direct result of M.O.D. influence among high government circles and the media.

We have made it clear to M.O.D. that we admire their great good works of the past as well as those going forward today. We have asked them to drop this facet of their program, but their response has been negative, and until it changes our policy must remain in place.

We truly sympathize with parents of handicapped and suspected handicapped in utero but feel that unwavering defense of the unborn, the born, the sick, the well, the helpless as well as the helping, must be the starting point from which we tackle society’s problems.

Supplemental Information: It is important to note that the March of Dimes organization is in favor of using human embryo stem cells and fetal tissue from aborted children for research. Of all human beings, embryos are the most defenseless against abuse. Human embryo stem cell research requires the deliberate destruction of a unique individual. The intentional destruction of some human beings for the alleged good of other human beings is wrong.

In addition, the March of Dimes has supported fetal tissue research throughout its history, regardless of the source of the fetal tissue. The March of Dimes claims neutrality on abortion even though it supports research using tissues and cells from children who were aborted.

The March of Dimes also “supports the use of fetal tissue for research to develop treatments for previously incurable diseases such as Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease and diabetes.” To date, despite the hype around using fetal tissue, transplantation research using fetal tissue has proven to be a great failure. One study, conducted by Dr. Curt Freed of the University of Colorado in Denver and Dr. Stanley Fahn of Columbia Presbyterian Center in Manhattan, found no difference in patients over the age of 60 after transplanting fetal cells into the brains of individuals with Parkinson’s.

RLM cannot encourage support of an organization which encourages such research.