A bill is being introduced in the Wisconsin legislature that would remove entirely the waiting period after a divorce before a remarriage. Currently the law requires six months after a divorce is finalized before a person can remarry. Wisconsin is one of 6 states with a waiting period. Two other states also require six months before remarrying. Democrat Sondy Pope is authoring the proposal, and a number of Republicans have been sympathetic to the idea. Julaine Appling, president of Wisconsin Family Council, says, Wisconsin should not change this law, regardless of what other states have done or are doing.
“Wisconsin needs to buck the trend. We need to keep the remarriage waiting period. We already have the worst combination of divorce law in the country: no fault, no contest. Removing the waiting period would further undermine marriage. Research shows remarriages are much more likely to end in divorce than first marriages. Experts tell us the longer the waiting period the better.”
This month State Senator Terry Moulton (R-Chippewa Falls) and State Representative Joel Kleefisch (R-Oconomowoc) sent a memo to their legislative colleagues inviting them to join them as co-sponsors of the bill package known as the Heal Without Harm Initiative. This initiative is comprised of two bills.
One bill bans the trade and use of the body parts of aborted babies and requires that they be given an appropriate final disposition.
The second bill requires” facilities where a woman could experience a tragic miscarriage or stillbirth to inform women that they can voluntarily donate their child for research. The bill also provides that facilities where a woman miscarries or delivers a stillborn baby arrange for the proper disposition of the baby.
The bills are strongly supported by the Heal Without Harm Coalition, comprised of the state’s main pro-life groups: Wisconsin Family Action, Wisconsin Right to Life, Pro-Life Wisconsin and Wisconsin Catholic Conference.
“Many pro-life Wisconsin citizens were very upset that a similar bill did not pass last session. These bills are even better than that bill. The package is all about recognizing the dignity and humanity of aborted, stillborn or miscarried babies,” said WFA president Julaine Appling..
For more details on the Heal Without Harm Initiative and this issue in general, click “CONTINUE READING” below.
CLICK HERE to find our your state senator and state representative are and their phone number. Simply type your street address in the space under “Find My Legislators” and hit “enter.”
A few weeks ago 2 Republicans, Sen. Alberta Darling (River Hills) and Rep. Cindi Duchow (Waukesha) introduced a bill that they claim stops the sale and use of the body parts of aborted babies. None of the state’s pro-life groups were consulted on the bill. Heal Without Harm Coalition analyzed the bill and found it pretty severely lacking. Parts of the bill are confusing, and it also has significant exceptions that would basically allow the UW to continue doing research using the body parts and tissue of aborted babies. All four main pro-life groups have registered as opposing this bill.
Two bills have recently been introduced in the Wisconsin Legislature to provide a path forward for biomedical research that honors the dignity of the human beings that it is meant to serve. These are the Fetal Remains Respect Act and the Unborn Child Disposition and Anatomical Gift Act, part of the Heal Without Harm Legislative Initiative. Contrary to what some claim, these bills do not stifle research. As scientists, we wholeheartedly support this initiative to support and advocate for biomedical research that benefits all human persons, without sacrificing one for another.
National Geographic is running an ad on Facebook featuring the caption, “Stand behind the facts. Stand with science. Stand for the planet,” and then below that, “Subscribe to National Geographic for just $12.”
It’s good advertising. But how will subscribing to this magazine help facts, science, or the planet in light of their January cover? If you recall, it featured a young boy dressed in pink leopard print with long, dyed hair and the caption, “The best thing about being a girl is that I don’t have to pretend to be a boy.”
Pushing the idea that biological males can become females and vice-versa while posturing as champions of science is a bit contradictory. It elevates an ideology that denies facts and science in favor of feelings.
The American Medical Association (AMA) is once again taking steps to move away from its long-standing opposition to doctor-assisted suicide.
The group is meeting next month to consider a recommendation that the AMA take a neutral position on doctor-prescribed death. The decision means physicians are one step closer to losing the right to fight for our patients and their families at times when they need us most.
WFA president Julaine Appling says, “In Wisconsin bills to legalize assisted suicide have been introduced nearly ever session since at least 1997. Fortunately, we have successfully derailed those efforts but we must remain vigilant. Also Wisconsin Medical Society recently considered changing its position on assisted suicide, however, but ultimately decided to leave it as it is, which still favors doing no harm.”
Wisconsin Family Action is a proud member of the Heal Without Harm Ethical Research Coalition (HWH), comprised of Wisconsin Catholic Conference, Wisconsin Right to Life and Pro-Life Wisconsin. The HWH Coalition supports ending the trade and use of abortion-derived baby body parts, while also promoting ethical alternatives in research.
The HWH Coalition has serious concerns about recently circulated state legislation because it would continue to permit trafficking and use of children whose lives were taken by abortion. This perpetuates the exploitation of the unborn. The Coalition urges state legislators to refrain from supporting this flawed proposal.
To learn more about our efforts and recent developments in legislation, CLICK HERE.
Just one week after Jeff Sessions was confirmed as Attorney General, the Department of Justice signaled that it is ending efforts to force school districts to allow boys into girls facilities as a condition of receiving federal funding.
Last year, the Department of Justice under President Obama redefined “sex” to mean “gender identity” under Title IX. This effectively forced schools to choose between their federal funding and the privacy of their students.
WFA president Julaine Appling says, “We are very proud that Wisconsin, under the leadership of Attorney General Brad Schimel and Governor Walker, is also part of this lawsuit. It’s encouraging that the Department of Justice under our new president apparently won’t be using its power to try to bully Wisconsin public schools into radically redefining biological realities and compromising student privacy.”
Next Tuesday, February 21, is Wisconsin’s Spring Non-Partisan Primary Election. Early in-person voting ends this Friday, February 17. Absentee ballots are also available. A primary for State Superintendent of Public Instruction will be on everyone’s ballot statewide. This is a 4-year term. Incumbent Tony Evers, who has served two terms, is running again and has 2 challengers: Dr. Lowell Holtz and Mr. John Humphries. Other local races could be on voters’ ballots. Check myvote.wi.gov to see a sample ballot. Polls open at 7 a.m. and close at 8 p.m. statewide.
Wisconsin Family Action Political Action Committee (PAC) has endorsed Dr. Lowell Holtz (photo, left) for State Superintendent of Public Instruction. See endorsement here.
“This race for State Superintendent of Public Instruction is critical,” says Julaine Appling, WFA president, “Whoever holds this office is responsible for determining state model academic standards, model policies on issues such as bullying, sexual orientation, gender –identity and more. Check the candidates websites, get informed and then be sure to vote.”
The Heal Without Harm Coalition, comprised of Wisconsin Catholic Conference, Wisconsin Family Action, Pro-Life Wisconsin and Wisconsin Right to Life has serious reservations about a bill circulated for co-sponsorship late Tuesday afternoon. It included a 5 PM Wednesday deadline for lawmakers to co-sponsor the legislation. From the Coalition’s statement sent to state lawmakers:
The Heal Without Harm Coalition, comprised of Wisconsin Catholic Conference, Wisconsin Family Action, Pro-Life Wisconsin, and Wisconsin Right to Life, has learned that LRB-1927/1 (sale and research on fetal body parts) is being circulated for co-sponsorship. After an initial review, the HWH Coalition has serious concerns regarding the proposal and urges legislators to refrain from co-sponsorship.
Elite media outlets are declaring a Supreme Court seat was “stolen.”
In his Stoplight® commentary, Stuart Shepard, Executive Producer for Creative Communications for Family Policy Alliance, shares some questions you can ask your friends who echo that narrative. Watch below.
WHAT YOU CAN DO:
Call Senator Ron Johnson (R) 202-224-5323 and Senator Tammy Baldwin (D) 202-224-5653 and urge them to vote to confirm President Trump’s nomination of Judge Neil Gorsuch.
Tweet your support for Judge Neil Gorsuch using hashtag #ConfirmGorsuch.
President Trump has an opportunity to protect our religious freedoms by signing an Executive Order. The document would uphold Constitutional religious freedom for all people, at all times and in all situations.
But we don’t just need another Executive Order. Autumn Leva and Paul Weber tell us Congress needs to step up and pass laws to strengthen our First Freedom – and make good on one of Trump’s biggest campaign promises.
TAKE ACTION Send an email to President Trump and Vice President Pence urging them to keep their campaign promise on religious freedom. Everything is already done for you, or you can revise and personalize yourself! Click HERE!
Wisconsin Family Council/Wisconsin Family Action’s biennial “Day at the Capitol” is Thursday, March 23, 2017. You’ll hear from key legislators, get legislative and organizational updates, visit your legislators in their capitol offices— and much, much more! Space is limited!
CLICK HERE to learn more about the event and register today!
Democrats in the Wisconsin Legislature are circulating a bill to legalize medical marijuana.
The proposal by state Sen. Jon Erpenbach and Rep. Chris Taylor comes after Republican Assembly Speaker Robin Vos said he would be open to the idea. Republicans have typically been against any attempts to legalize marijuana.
Republican Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald says he is against medical marijuana. And Gov. Scott Walker also says he opposes it.
WFA president Julaine Appling says, “I’m not sure why Republican Speaker Robin Vos is open to the idea. Most Republicans oppose this idea and the slippery slope it creates. While some claim this is an important medical treatment, many others point out the legal issues for doctors, remind us of the addictive nature of marijuana and point out other treatments exist that don’t involve this addictive narcotic.”
On January 22, 1973, on a 7-2 vote, the US Supreme Court handed down the now infamous Roe v. Wade decision that legalized abortion on demand all across America. That evening, CBS news anchor Walter Cronkite led off with the court decision. He noted that a religious leader had called the decision an “unspeakable tragedy.” Now, 44 years later, the decision is still an unspeakable tragedy. Nationwide, since the wrong-headed ruling by 7 judicial activists, nearly 60 million unborn—and irreplaceable–children have been legally killed while still in their mother’s womb.
WFA president Julaine Appling says, “Nothing about abortion is anything less than tragic. In Wisconsin, we have lost over 500,000 future citizens, which equals the populations of Green Bay, Appleton, Racine, Eau Claire, Wausau, Fond du Lac, and Kenosha. As we observe the anniversary of this horrific court decision this Sunday, may we renew our personal dedication to restoring a culture of life in our state.”
Wisconsin Family Action president Julaine Appling was a guest panelist Wednesday evening, January 11, participating in “A Nation Engaged,” a live pre-inauguration community conversation, in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. The forum was put on by National Public Radio (NPR) and Wisconsin Public Radio. Similar panels were also held in Sacramento, Houston and Raleigh-Durham this same evening.
During the forum, community leaders were invited to speak to the questions: What are your hopes for the Trump Administration? What should the country know about your community? The moderator also took questions and comments from the audience during the one-hour panel.
The program aired nationwide on NPR on Monday, January 16. Click HERE to listen.
My stock answer to those who ask me what I think about President-elect Donald Trump and the coming four years is, “I’m cautiously optimistic.” I am prepared to give President Trump the benefit of the doubt on this journey of making America great again.
I believe as a result of this past election, America has been given yet another opportunity to right some wrongs and to get back on track in important areas. The question is how will we use this opportunity? Millions of Americans said with their vote that they are tired of what we’ve had the last eight years. We are hopeful real change will happen — good changes that will make America great again. In light of that, here are my hopes for our new president and his administration. (more…)
Wisconsin Family Council/Wisconsin Family Action’s biennial “Day at the Capitol” is scheduled for Thursday, March 23, 2017. You won’t want to miss this opportunity to connect directly with your government. You’ll hear from key legislators, get legislative updates, visit your legislators in their capitol offices— and much, much more! Space is limited!
Click HERE to learn more about the event and sign up for a personal invitation when they become available OR….
Contact our office to pre-register for this event! Call 888.378.7395 or email our office at [email protected].
“Another offering at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, this one on masculinity, is drawing fire from conservatives as an example of ideological excesses at the school.
The target is the Men’s Project, a six-week voluntary discussion program that “aims to explore masculinity and the problems accompanied by simplified definitions of it,” according to a UW Health Service news release.”
WFA president Julaine Appling says, “This situation reminds us there are many eager to tell your son what masculinity is. How much better coming from a loving father who purposefully in both word and example instructs his son on what it means to be a man. And Dads have the best instruction manual available–the Word of God. Be assured, our Creator isn’t silent or confused about masculinity.”
From the Beloit Daily News: “Parties involved with the Ho-Chunk Nation’s Beloit casino project are testing the waters to see if there’s support to move the plan ahead at the federal level after President-elect Donald Trump takes office January 20. … The move follows the tribe’s request to Beloit city staff asking for local state legislators to reaffirm support for the project and to help line up Wisconsin’s congressional delegation behind the plan. If approved at the federal level, the plan would head for Gov. Scott Walker’s desk for approval or denial.”
WFA president Julaine Appling says, “This would be the first off-reservation casino in WI—opening a huge door for many more. The Ho-Chunk are proposing a 145,000 square foot gaming facility, with a 300-room hotel and 35,000 square foot convention center right off I-90/39 in Beloit.”
She adds, “Wisconsin does not need another casino—anywhere. We already have over 20. Right now no one in Wisconsin is more than a 2-hour drive from a casino. Gambling is not an innocent, victimless activity. Studies show the nearer people live to a casino the more likely they are to become problem gamblers—which destroys individuals, families and communities. That makes it bad for Wisconsin.”
Our friends at Pro-Life Wisconsin are calling for the state’s Legislative Audit Bureau to conduct a full audit of Wisconsin’s Medicaid family-planning providers, including Planned Parenthood of Wisconsin. Recent open records requests have found limited audits that show Planned Parenthood facilities alone have overbilled the state and its taxpayers more than $100,000 between 2006 and 2014. Matt Sande, Pro-Life Wisconsin legislative director says it’s bad enough family planning funds pay for surgical and chemical abortions in Wisconsin; it’s intolerable that taxpayers are ripped off in the process.
Wisconsin Family Action president Julaine Appling agrees, “Pro-life organizations, including Wisconsin Family Action successfully supported a bill authored by Rep. Andre Jacque and Senator Chris Kapenga that stops Planned Parenthood from Medicaid overbilling in the future, but that law doesn’t address past fraud. An audit is very appropriate and the governor or the legislature should order it.”
Did you know you make the IMpossible possible? You do!
We won’t sugarcoat it. This year has been unusually challenging in many ways, not the least of which is financially. But because you and many others like you have stepped up, and because we made tough but necessary internal adjustments, and of course because of our great God, we have have been able to stay the course. Frankly, that’s kind of an IMpossible made possible–and it’s only by God’s grace and your generosity.
Here are some other things that looked pretty much IMpossible at some point this year but in partnership with you were made POSSIBLE.
Two pro-life bills that were never supposed to even see the light of day this past session were passed and signed into law earlier this year. Both of them deal with taking millions of your hard-earned tax dollars AWAY from Planned Parenthood of WI.
After nearly 10 years since the original idea and after 6 years of legislative efforts, Wisconsin will have a Choose Life license plate available. We partnered with our good friends at Pro-Life Wisconsin on this project–and just a couple of weeks ago we received official notice that at last–and after a great deal of work–the plate has gone from dream to reality. WFA was and is the only organization in the state that has stood strong and even pushed back against the invasion of the privacy of students in restrooms, locker rooms and shower rooms. In the media, the legislature, and everywhere else, WFA has worked to stop special rights and protections for boys who say they’re girls and vice-versa.
WFA’s ambitious 2015-2016 Legislative Scorecardwas produced and published. Because of the breadth of issues we cover, this is one of the best indicators available regarding how a legislator has done this past session.
WFA and WFC conducted major educational and voter-turnout efforts for the spring election.
Between mid-August and Election Day, November 8, WFA/WFC –personnel traveled over 8000 miles (all in Wisconsin!) –was involved with 45 different events –published a robust online voter guide –produced and distributed 20,000 get-out-the-vote fliers to nearly 500 churches, in addition to 18,000 copies of the October “Church Connection” distributed dealing with why Christians should vote. –maintained a significant social media presence regarding the election. –endorsed and supported numerous candidates running for state legislature and several for congress. –sponsored 7 days of pro-life radio ads in Milwaukee the last week before the election. –and all this was in addition to our regular work.
In so many ways, you have, through your financial investment and your prayers, made the IMpossible, POSSIBLE.
The bottom line is this: we are running behind budget, and we need to finish this year strong so we can go into the new year, with its unique legislative and cultural opportunities, ready to again, in partnership with you, make the IMpossible POSSIBLE.
Some would say even our vision is impossible: a Wisconsin where God is honored, families thrive, life is cherished, and religious freedom flourishes. However, we believe that in partnership with you we can keep making good strides toward having this ambitious goal become POSSIBLE.
In 2017, our plans include
Championing legislation that recognizes the humanity of the unborn by preventing the sale and use of the body parts or tissue of aborted babies, while still maintaining important research to help treat and cure diseases that plague humanity.
Supporting legislation that protects the privacy rights of all students in our public schools, not just a small special group.
Increasing the number of churches Wisconsin Family Council directly serves from 300 to 360.
Supporting conservative candidates for State Superintendent of Public Schools and State Supreme Court (spring election).
“Abortion and race, two of America’s most volatile topics, have intersected in recent flare-ups related to the disproportionately high rate of abortion among black women.
In Congress, Rep. Sean Duffy, a white Republican from rural Wisconsin, lambasted black members of Congress for failing to decry these high abortion numbers. The next day, Rep. Gwen Moore, a black Democrat from Milwaukee, fired back — accusing Duffy and his GOPcolleagues of caring about black children only before they are born.”
Wisconsin Family Action president Julaine Appling (photo, left) responds, “How sad that Representative Moore is fighting Congress’s efforts to fully investigate Planned Parenthood. Representative Moore represents Milwaukee. As an African-American woman she surely must know that abortion numbers in her community are disproportionately high in comparison to the population. She should welcome an investigation of the nation’s largest abortion provider.”
NEW PRO-LIFE LICENSE PLATE WILL BE AVAILABLE IN 2017
A Choose Life Wisconsin license plate is becoming a reality. The red, white and black plate features an ink print of a baby’s foot and the words Choose Life. The effort began years ago as a cooperative project of Wisconsin Family Action and Pro-Life Wisconsin. $25 from the sale of each plate will go to Choose Life Wisconsin, an independent not-for-profit corporation. Choose Life Wisconsin will then distribute those funds to various Wisconsin Pregnancy Resource Centers. Over $23 million has been raised nationally from the sale of Choose Life plates in various states.
Gov. Scott Walker’s family commission is calling for a series of state law and policy changes to alleviate poverty by strengthening families.
The Future of the Family Commission on Thursday recommended the state expand taxpayer-funded vouchers for private schools, offer marriage tax credits, increase access to quality child care, and teach financial and family planning skills in school and parenting and relationship skills in prison.
The commission also suggested that Wisconsin schools employ and promote the “Success Sequence,” an idea promoted by the conservative Heritage Foundation that emphasizes graduating from high school, getting a job, and turning 21 and getting married before having children.
WFA President Julaine Appling responds, “We certainly echo the commission’s recommendations on marriage. Strong families start with strong marriages. Using this report in tandem with our Wisconsin Family Prosperity Index charts a clear path for strengthening Wisconsin’s best natural resource—her families. With the governor’s backing, I trust the state legislature will make strengthening families a high priority this session. “
Today, Wisconsin Family Action and Wisconsin Family Council kicked off the Christmas season by putting a traditional nativity display and a Merry Christmas sign in the State Capitol. This year marks the 20th year Wisconsin Family Council has had a sign in the capitol and the fifth year of the nativity display. The Madison-based Freedom from Religion Foundation has also had its Winter Solstice sign up for all 20 years (photo, right) and has added a blasphemous nativity display in recent years. The displays join the State Christmas tree in the rotunda and will be up all month.
“We are honored to exercise our freedom of speech and religion with these displays each year, ” says WFA president Julaine Appling, “The thousands who come to the capitol this month will see our sign and our beautiful nativity declaring the Truth that Jesus Christ really is the reason for the season. Unlike Freedom From Religion’s dark and hopeless message, our display brings light and offers hope.”
We had help with setting up from Erica and Gennavive Meisel of Baraboo.
If you thought the November Election was over, think again. Wisconsin is preparing to count your votes all over again starting as early as this Thursday, December 1, at 9 a.m.
Because apparently those who lost simply cannot accept the final results of the election. Former Green Party presidential candidate Jill Stein has requested a recount in three states, Wisconsin being one of them. Her reason? She does not “trust” our election system. Interestingly, if the 46 electoral votes from these 3 states go to Hillary Clinton rather than Donald Trump, then Trump goes from 306 electoral votes to 260–10 below the required 270–while Clinton goes from 232 to 278, and would therefore be the winner.
“Our message to pious politicians is: Get off your knees and get to work. The answers will not come from above. Nothing fails like prayer.” -Annie Lord Gaylor, Freedom From Religion Foundation
“A Republican legislator has been holding weekly Bible study sessions for lawmakers in his state Capitol office for the past three years, raising questions again about where the line between church and state lies in the building.
Administrative rules require state employees to use state buildings only for official work. Critics say the meetings are inappropriate, even though praying before legislative session days and religious displays in the Capitol rotunda have been upheld as legal.”
WFA president Julaine Appling responds, “Freedom From Religion Foundation is once again doing what it does best—being the neighborhood bully. We have nothing but the highest praise and regard for Representative Tittl and the Bible Study. He’s totally within his legal rights to do this, as are those who attend. Frankly, I can’t think of anything better for our state legislature than prayer & Bible study!”
Parents, grandparents, taxpayers, and community members of Appleton Area and Neenah Joint School Districts need to pay close attention to this information.
These two school districts in Wisconsin have advisory committees in place that are currently in the midst of determining the “sex ed” curriculum for those districts’ Human Growth and Development (HG&D) program.
On one hand, both of these district committees have the option of recommending the HG&D curriculum be terminated and the resources directed elsewhere. On the other hand, the committees may consider offering the curriculum on an Opt-In basis versus the current Opt-Out basis. Meaning, parents would need to purposefully choose to let their children be part of the HG&D classes, whereas currently, parents must purposefully choose to keep their children out of those classes.
In Neenah, in order for either of these recommendations to reach the school board for consideration and a vote, they must receive 75% approval from the committee.
It is important to again emphasize that Wisconsin state law does not require school districts to offer such courses at all.
Under existing law, local committees which are required by law and must include often a mix of parents, educators, clergy and others from the community, act in an advisory capacity to school boards as they make decisions about HG&D curriculum for their schools.
Wise parents will take time right now to find out exactly what the school their children attends is doing regarding human growth and development programs—and any planned changes. State law requires schools make that information available to parents. Don’t assume; be vigilant.
IMPORTANT: It is critical that parents and citizens attend the next HG&D committee meetings in Appleton and Neenah.
Following is a list of dates and times for both Neenah and Appleton School Districts as well as links to contact school board members.
Focus on the Family offers helpful talking points that may assist you as you address school board and committee members. Click HERE for these resources.
NEENAH: Monday, November 28, 2016 Neenah Joint School District Administration Building 410 S. Commercial Street Neenah, WI 54956
Click HERE for more information on this meeting as details become available.
CLICK HERE for Neenah school board member contact information.
Thursday, December 1, 4:00 p.m.-6:00 p.m. – Morgan Building
Thursday, January 12, 2017, 4:00 p.m.-6:00 p.m. – Morgan Building
Thursday, April 6, 2017, 4:00 p.m.-6:00 p.m. – Morgan Building
CLICK HERE for Appleton school board member contact information.