On the Rights of Personsby Representative Barry Loudermilk
Posted on 2016-01-07
LOUDERMILK asked and was given permission to address the House
for 1 minute and to revise and extend his remarks.)
Mr. LOUDERMILK. Mr. Speaker, for those who haven't been in the House
Chamber, surrounding the inside of this beautiful building are effigies
of great philosophers and lawgivers that have influenced the founding
of our Nation. One of those, to my right, is that of Sir William
Now, Blackstone had great influence upon our Founders, especially that of Thomas Jefferson. In fact, it was Blackstone who influenced the three enumerated rights of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.
Mr. Speaker, let me read from Blackstone's Commentary, the very document which influenced Thomas Jefferson to make life the very first right that is given by government.
Blackstone said: ``Life is the immediate gift of God, a right inherent by nature in every individual; and it begins in contemplation of law as soon as an infant is able to stir in the mother's womb.'' That is one of the foundations of this Nation, that life begins at conception.
[[Page H155]] And our Founding Fathers understood that it was a great philosophy and that is when the protection of law begins.
On January 22, 1973, we departed from that philosophy with the decision of Roe v. Wade. Since then, over 57 million American lives have been taken because of that decision. Mr. Speaker, that number is equivalent to the population of Georgia, Florida, Alabama, Mississippi, Kentucky, South Carolina, Louisiana, and Tennessee. That one decision, Mr. Speaker, has not only figuratively, but literally changed the landscape of America.