Dear President-elect Obama,
First, congratulations on your election as our 44th president. I hope you know that there are tens of millions of Americans who did not vote for you who are still very, very pleased that an African American has been elected President of the United States.
That fact that this could happen in a country with as tragic a racial past as America’s says something noble and fine about the American experiment. We as a nation have chosen together to live up to the promises of our founding document, the Declaration of Independence: “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal.”
We covenant to pray for you, your family, and your administration. We will pray that God will grant you godly wisdom in all your decision-making.
Mr. President-elect, Southern Baptists remain unalterably committed to the protection of unborn human life. The vast majority of Southern Baptists believe that a pre-born baby is a distinct human life, according to both science and the Bible.
You have said you want to unite us as a nation. An excellent place to work for such unity would be for you to put your full support behind the Democrats for Life initiative known as the Pregnant Women Support Act (its goal is to reduce abortion by 95 percent over a 10-year period).
This bill would:
• Establish a toll-free number to direct women to places that will provide support during and following their pregnancy.
• Provide child care to low-income and student parents.
• Provide parenting education in maternity group homes.
• Make the Adoption Tax Credits permanent.
• Ensure that pregnant women are not denied health care by insurance companies and that coverage is continued for newborns.
• Codify the regulation that extends coverage under the State Children’s Health Insurance Program (SCHIP) to low-income pregnant women and unborn children.
• Increase funding for the Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) Nutrition Program.
• Provide grants to institutions of higher education to fund pregnant and parenting student services.
• Provide new mothers with free home visits by registered nurses.
All of these measures would help fulfill the pledge made in the 2008 Democratic Party platform, which “strongly supports a woman’s decision to have a child by ensuring access to and availability of programs for pre- and post-natal health care, parenting skills, income support, and caring adoption programs.”Dr. Richard Land is the president of the Southern Baptist Convention’s Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission and author of The Divided States of America?: What Liberals AND Conservatives are missing in the God-and-country shouting match!