As we continue our research into Sanctuaries for the Unborn, we have come across the city of Waskom, Texas which passed a resolution and an ordinance declaring itself a Sanctuary City for the Unborn on June 11, 2019. According to marshallnewsmessenger.com, Waskom was actually the first Sanctuary City for the Unborn in the state of Texas.
We were able to acquire an unsigned copy of the resolution and ordinance (both of which are below). If anyone has signed copies of either of these documents, please forward them to firstname.lastname@example.org and we will gladly update this article.
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A RESOLUTION TO MAKE WASKOM, TEXAS A “SANCTUARY CITY FOR THE UNBORN”
WHEREAS, the Declaration of Independence, the founding document of the United States of America, states, “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of happiness.” Life being the first of these declared rights; and
WHEREAS, the preamble of the United States Constitutions “secure[s] all of the blessing of Liberty to ourselves and our ‘Posterity’, which is defined as “Descendants; children, children’s children, etc. indefinitely…” and “in a general sense, succeeding generations…” (Webster’s American Dictionary of the English Language, 1828); and
WHEREAS, said Constitution states in the 14th Amendment, “No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws” (emphasis ours); and
WHEREAS, as recently as March 2017, the American College of Pediatricians published an Abstract stating that “The predominance of human biological research confirms that human life begins at conception – fertilization. At fertilization, the human being emerges genetically distinct, individuated zygotic living human organism, a member of the species Homo sapiens, needing only the proper environment to grow and develop. The difference between the individual in its adult state and in its zygotic state is one of form, not nature”; and
WHEREAS, each and every innocent human life is unique and precious to God; and
WHEREAS, human life begins at the moment of conception and continues, uninterrupted, until the moment of natural death; and
WHEREAS, innocent human life must always be protected and preserved; and
WHEREAS, the protection of all human life is important to the people of the City of Waskom; and
NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED BY THE CITY COUNCIL AS THE GOVERNING BODY OF THE CITY OF WASKOM, TEXAS, that we declare that innocent human life, including fetal life at every stage of gestation, must always be protected and that Society must protect those who cannot protect themselves.
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED by the City Council that it declare its opposition to any compromise by the Texas Legislature on abortion.
ORDINANCE OUTLAWING ABORTION WITHIN THE CITY OF WASKOM, DECLARING WASKOM A SANCTUARY CITY FOR THE UNBORN, MAKING VARIOUS PROVISIONS AND FINDINGS RELATED THERETO, PROVIDING FOR SEVERABILITY, REPEALING CONFLICTING ORDINANCES, AND ESTABLISHING AN EFFECTIVE DATE.
WHEREAS, the City Alderman of the City of Waskom hereby finds that the United States Constitution has established the right of self-governance for local municipalities;
WHEREAS, a surgical or chemical abortion is the purposeful and intentional ending of a human life, and is murder “with malice aforethought” since the baby in the womb has its own DNA, and at certain points in pregnancy has its own heartbeat and its own brainwaves;
WHEREAS, these babies are the most innocent among us and deserve equal protection under the law as any other member of our American posterity as defined by the United States Constitution;
WHEREAS, the Supreme Court erred in Roe v. Wade, 410 U.S. 113 (1973), when it said that pregnant women have a constitutional right to abort their pre-born children, as there is no language anywhere in the Constitution that even remotely suggests that abortion is a constitutional right;
WHEREAS, constitutional scholars have excoriated Roe v. Wade, 410 U.S. 113 (1973), for its lack of reasoning and its decision to concoct a constitutional right to abortion that has no textual foundation in the Constitution or any source of law, see John Hart Ely, The Wages of Crying Wolf: A Comment on Roe v. Wade, 82 Yale L.J. 920, 947 (1973) (“Roe v. Wade … is not constitutional law and gives almost no sense of an obligation to try to be.”); Richard A. Epstein, Substantive Due Process By Any Other Name: The Abortion Cases, 1973 Sup. Ct. Rev. 159, 182 (“It is simple fiat and power that gives [Roe v. Wade] its legal effect.”); Mark Tushnet, Red, White, and Blue: A Critical Analysis of Constitutional Law 54 (1988) (“We might think of Justice Blackmun’s opinion in Roe as an innovation akin to Joyce’s or Mailer’s. It is the totally unreasoned judicial opinion.”);
WHEREAS, Roe v. Wade, 410 U.S. 113 (1973), is a lawless and illegitimate act of judicial usurpation, which violates the Tenth Amendment by trampling the reserved powers of the States, and denies the people of each State a Republican Form of Government by imposing abortion policy through judicial decree;
WHEREAS, the recent changes of membership on the Supreme Court indicate that the pro-abortion justices have lost their majority; WHEREAS, to protect the health and welfare of all residents within the City of Waskom, including the unborn, the City Council has found it necessary to outlaw human abortion within the city limits.
NOW, BE IT ORDAINED BY THE CITY COUNCIL OF THE CITY OF WASKOM, TEXAS, THAT:
1. “Abortion” means the death of a child as the result of purposeful action taken before or during the birth of the child with the intent to cause the death of the child. This includes, but is not limited to:
(a) Chemical abortions caused by the morning-after pill, mifepristone (also known as RU-486), and the Plan B pill.
(b) Surgical abortions at any stage of pregnancy.
(c) Saline abortions at any stage of pregnancy.
(d) Self-induced abortions at any stage of pregnancy.
The term “abortion” does NOT include accidental miscarriage.
2. “Child” means a natural person from the moment of conception until 18 years of age.
3. “Pre-born child” means a natural person from the moment of conception who has not yet left the womb.
4. “Abortionist” means any person, medically trained or otherwise, who causes the death of the child in the womb. This includes, but is not limited to:
(a) Obstetricians/gynecologists and other medical professionals who perform abortions of any kind for any reason.
(b) Any other medical doctor who performs abortions of any kind for any reason.
(c) Any nurse practitioner who performs abortions of any kind for any reason.
(d) Any personnel from Planned Parenthood or other pro-abortion organizations who perform abortions of any kind for any reason.
(e) Any remote personnel who instruct abortive women to perform self-abortions at home via internet connection.
(f) Any pharmacist or pharmaceutical worker who sells chemical or herbal abortifacients.
5. “City” shall mean the city of Waskom, Texas.
1. We declare Waskom, Texas to be a Sanctuary City for the Unborn.
2. Abortion at all times and at all stages of pregnancy is declared to be an act of murder with malice aforethought, subject only to the affirmative defenses described in Section C.3.
3. Organizations that perform abortions and assist others in obtaining abortions are declared to be criminal organizations. These organizations include, but are not limited to:
(a) Planned Parenthood and any of its affiliates;
(b) Jane’s Due Process;
(c) The Afiya Center;
(d) The Lilith Fund for Reproductive Equality;
(e) NARAL Pro-Choice Texas;
(f) National Latina Institute for Reproductive Health;
(g) Whole Woman’s Health and Whole Woman’s Health Alliance;
(h) Texas Equal Access Fund;
4. The Supreme Court’s rulings and opinions in Roe v. Wade, 410 U.S. 113 (1973), Planned Parenthood v. Casey, 505 U.S. 833 (1992), Stenberg v. Carhart, 530 U.S. 914 (2000), Whole Woman’s Health v. Hellerstedt, 136 S. Ct. 2292 (2016), and any other rulings or opinions from the Supreme Court that purport to establish or enforce a “constitutional right” to abort a pre-born child, are declared to be unconstitutional usurpations of judicial power, which violate both the Tenth Amendment the Republican Form of Government Clause, and are declared to be null and void in the City of Waskom.
C. UNLAWFUL ACTS
1. ABORTION — It shall be unlawful for any person to procure or perform an abortion of any type and at any stage of pregnancy in the City of Waskom, Texas.
2. AIDING OR ABETTING AN ABORTION — It shall be unlawful for any person to knowingly aid or abet an abortion that occurs in the City of Waskom, Texas. This includes, but is not limited to, the following acts:
(a) Knowingly providing transportation to or from an abortion provider;
(b) Giving instructions over the telephone, the internet, or any other medium of communication regarding self-administered abortion;
(c) Providing money with the knowledge that it will be used to pay for an abortion or the costs associated with procuring an abortion;
(d) Coercing a pregnant mother to have an abortion against her will.
3. AFFIRMATIVE DEFENSES — It shall be an affirmative defense to the unlawful acts described in Sections C.1 and C.2 if the abortion was:
(a) In response to a life-threatening physical condition aggravated by, caused by, or arising from a pregnancy that, as certified by a physician, places the woman in danger of death or a serious risk of substantial impairment of a major bodily function unless an abortion is performed.
(b) In response to a pregnancy caused by an act of rape, sexual assault, or incest that was reported to law enforcement;
The defendant shall have the burden of proving these affirmative defenses by a preponderance of the evidence.
4. CAUSING AN ABORTION BY AN ACT OF RAPE, SEXUAL ASSAULT, OR INCEST — It shall be unlawful for any person to cause an abortion by an act of rape, sexual assault, or incest that impregnates the victim against her will and causes her to abort the pre-born child.
5. PROHIBITED CRIMINAL ORGANIZATIONS — It shall be unlawful for a criminal organization described in Section B.3 to operate within the City of Waskom, Texas. This includes, but is not limited to:
(a) Offering services of any type within the City of Waskom, Texas;
(b) Renting office space or purchasing real property within the City of Waskom, Texas;
(c) Establishing a physical presence of any sort within the City of Waskom, Texas;
D. PUBLIC ENFORCEMENT
1. Neither the City of Waskom, nor any of its officers or employees, nor any district or county attorney, nor any executive or administrative officer or employee of any state or local governmental entity, shall take any steps to enforce this ordinance against a person or entity that commits an unlawful act described in Section C, unless and until the Supreme Court overrules Roe v. Wade, 410 U.S. 113 (1973), and Planned Parenthood v. Casey, 505 U.S. 833 (1992), and permits states and municipalities to once again enforce abortion prohibitions.
2. If (and only if) the Supreme Court overrules Roe v. Wade, 410 U.S. 113 (1973), and Planned Parenthood v. Casey, 505 U.S. 833 (1992), a person who commits an unlawful act described in Section C shall be subject to the maximum penalty permitted under Texas law for the violation of a municipal ordinance governing public health, and each violation shall constitute a separate offense.
Provided, that no punishment shall be imposed upon the mother of the pre-born child that has been aborted.
3. If (and only if) the Supreme Court overrules Roe v. Wade, 410 U.S. 113 (1973), and Planned Parenthood v. Casey, 505 U.S. 833 (1992), a corporation or entity that commits an unlawful act described in Section C shall be subject to the maximum penalty permitted under Texas law for the violation of a municipal ordinance governing public health, and each violation shall constitute a separate offense.
E. PRIVATE ENFORCEMENT
1. A person or entity that commits an unlawful act described in Section C.1 or C.2, other than the mother of the pre-born child that has been aborted, shall be liable in tort to any surviving relative of the aborted pre-born child, including the child’s mother, father, grandparents, siblings or half-siblings, aunts, uncles, or cousins. The person or entity that committed the unlawful act shall be liable to each surviving relative of the aborted pre-born child for:
(a) Compensatory damages, including damages for emotional distress;
(b) Punitive damages; and
(c) Costs and attorneys’ fees.
There is no statute of limitations for this private right of action.
2. Any private citizen may bring a qui tam relator action against a person or entity that commits or plans to commit an unlawful act described in Section C, and may be awarded:
(a) Injunctive relief;
(b) Statutory damages of not less than two thousand dollars ($2,000.00) for each violation, and not more than the maximum penalty permitted under Texas law for the violation of a municipal ordinance governing public health; and
(c) Costs and attorneys’ fees;
Provided, that no damages or liability for costs and attorneys’ fees may be awarded or assessed against the mother of the pre-born child that has been aborted. There is no statute of limitations for this qui tam relator action.
3. No qui tam relator action described in Section E.2 may be brought by the City of Waskom, by any of its officers or employees, by any district or county attorney, or by any executive or administrative officer or employee of any state or local governmental entity.
1. Mindful of Leavitt v. Jane L., 518 U.S. 137 (1996), in which in the context of determining the severability of a state statute regulating abortion the United States Supreme Court held that an explicit statement of legislative intent is controlling, it is the intent of the City Council that every provision, section, subsection, sentence, clause, phrase, or word in this ordinance, and every application of the provisions in this ordinance, are severable from each other. If any application of any provision in this ordinance to any person, group of persons, or circumstances is found by a court to be invalid or unconstitutional, then the remaining applications of that provision to all other persons and circumstances shall be severed and may not be affected. All constitutionally valid applications of this ordinance shall be severed from any applications that a court finds to be invalid, leaving the valid applications in force, because it is the City Council’s intent and priority that the valid applications be allowed to stand alone. Even if a reviewing court finds a provision of this ordinance to impose an undue burden in a large or substantial fraction of relevant cases, the applications that do not present an undue burden shall be severed from the remaining provisions and shall remain in force, and shall be treated as if the City Council had enacted an ordinance limited to the persons, group of persons, or circumstances for which the statute’s application does not present an undue burden. The City Council further declares that it would have passed this ordinance, and each provision, section, subsection, sentence, clause, phrase, or word, and all constitutional applications of this ordinance, irrespective of the fact that any provision, section, subsection, sentence, clause, phrase, or word, or applications of this ordinance, were to be declared unconstitutional or to represent an undue burden.
2. If any provision of this ordinance is found by any court to be unconstitutionally vague, then the applications of that provision that do not present constitutional vagueness problems shall be severed and remain in force, consistent with the declarations of the City Council’s intent in Section F.1
3. No court may decline to enforce the severability requirements in Sections F.1 and F.2 on the ground that severance would “rewrite” the ordinance or involve the court in legislative activity. A court that declines to enforce or enjoins a city official from enforcing a subset of an ordinance’s applications is never “rewriting” an ordinance, as the ordinance continues to say exactly what it said before. A judicial injunction or declaration of unconstitutionality is nothing more than a non-enforcement edict that can always be vacated by later courts if they have a different understanding of what the Constitution requires; it is not a formal amendment of the language in a statute or ordinance. A judicial injunction or declaration of unconstitutionality no more “rewrites” an ordinance than a decision by the executive not to enforce a duly enacted ordinance in a limited and defined set of circumstances.
4. If any federal or state court ignores or declines to enforce the requirements of Sections F.1, F.2, or F.3, or holds a provision of this ordinance invalid on its face after failing to enforce the severability requirements of Sections F.1 and F.2, for any reason whatsoever, then the Mayor shall hold delegated authority to issue a saving construction of the ordinance that avoids the constitutional problems or other problems identified by the federal or state court, while enforcing the provisions of the ordinance to the maximum possible extent. The saving construction issued by the Mayor shall carry the same force of law as an ordinance; it shall represent the authoritative construction of the ordinance in both federal and state judicial proceedings; and it shall remain in effect until the court ruling that declares invalid or enjoins the enforcement of the original provision in the ordinance is overruled, vacated, or reversed.
5. The Mayor must issue the saving construction described in Section F.4 within 20 days after a judicial ruling that declares invalid or enjoins the enforcement of a provision of this ordinance after failing to enforce the severability requirements of Sections F.1 and F.2. If the Mayor fails to issue the saving construction required by Section F.4 within 20 days after a judicial ruling that declares invalid or enjoins the enforcement of a provision of this ordinance after failing to enforce the severability requirements of Sections F.1 or F.2, or if the Mayor’s saving construction fails to enforce the provisions of the ordinance to the maximum possible extent permitted by the Constitution or other superseding legal requirements, as construed by the federal or state judiciaries, then any person may petition for a writ of mandamus requiring the Mayor to issue the saving construction described in Section F.4.
G. EFFECTIVE DATE
This ordinance shall go into immediate effect upon majority vote within the Waskom, Texas City Council meeting.