From the Director

On October 15, 2001, it was business as usual at our State Capitol. In the face of overwhelming evidence presented by LLDF to every legislator and the governor that Senate Bill 780 was based on misrepresentations of pro-life opposition to abortion, Governor Davis signed the bill into law, pandering to the pro-abortion extremists who lobbied for the bill, among them the bill author, Senator Deborah Ortiz. SB 780 is nothing more than a vehicle for the state to intimidate and harass those who oppose abortion. Most noticeable among the bill’s provisions is the section allowing the State Attorney General to compile dossiers on pro-life individuals. LLDF is in the process of drafting a complaint to challenge certain of the bill’s provisions.

To read the signed version of the bill see the California legislature’s web site, ( Click on “bill information” and follow the prompts. The web page for SB 780 will have a copy of the “chaptered” bill, which means it was signed into law. The law will be effective January 1, 2002.

Based on the legalization of state-sanctioned intimidation and harassment by California authorities of opponents of abortion, and after the events of September 11, all of us have been reflecting on what is really important in our lives. We have to go on with business as usual, with a constant awareness of the threats we face as a nation and as pro-life individuals.

Consequently, we find ourselves a bit melancholy, if you will. I’ve found that the cure for any slump is a thankful heart. To that end, I will share the following. We have a slogan at LLDF—“you can’t lose them all”—and we use it in the face of the infamous “abortion distortion” we see repeatedly in case law, and our own state officials’ love affair with killing unborn children. We often laugh when we say “You can’t lose them all,” but it is one way of reminding ourselves to stay focused on our mission—to save innocent and vulnerable human beings from threat of death, and to stay in the courtroom defending advocates for the innocent and vulnerable. No matter how hard the forces of death try, whether through legal enactment or legal opinion, or by their own acts of intimidation and terrorism, we will never give up. Just look at the “Victory!”s in our recap.

In that regard, we usually keep you apprised of our casework and the needs that each case entails. What you don’t normally hear about are the dedicated individuals who devote their lives, day in and day out, and who never give up on LLDF’s mission and purpose. Names are omitted to protect the humble, but they know who they are.

A law student drove across the country to serve as an intern with us so she would have legal experience with life issues. Her goal is to establish an LLDF office in Minnesota once she graduates from law school and is licensed to practice law.

Two staff attorneys who work gratis, both of whom make a mockery of the maxim “you get what you pay for.”

Volunteer attorneys who donate hundreds of hours to LLD, translating yearly into hundreds of thousands of dollars in donated attorney fees.

Volunteers in various capacities who are critical support staff for LLDF’s legal work and various projects.

The Lifeline staff, from reporters to writers to designers to editors, who have tirelessly managed to publish an excellent newsletter for years.

Administrative staff who appear to most overworked and underpaid yet still consider themselves blessed and who love their work with LLDF.  Board members who make decisions based on saving lives, not notoriety or political pandering.

To the faithful supporters reading this, I haven’t forgotten you. You give to LLDF time and again based on the interest you have in our cases, but your giving would be in vain if it weren’t for those who diligently and proficiently partner with LLDF.

This is why I can give thanks with a grateful heart.