By GREG RUSSELL, Register Staff Writer
An official with the Gainesville-based All Babies Born Alive (ABBA) Women’s Center spent Tuesday in Austin, helping another conservative agency campaign for traditional beliefs.
ABBA Women’s Center Executive Director Sandee Feyereisen participated in “Faith and Family Day,” hosted by the “Texas Values” organization and launched on the Texas State Capitol steps. The event included a rally featuring Gov. Rick Perry and Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst, plus a family advocacy-themed dinner later in the day at Doubletree Hotel.
“It wasn’t a very lengthy event at all, but with the opening of the 83rd Legislature, it was an important time to make your voice be heard, because they’re important issues that legislators face in the coming months,” Feyereisen said Wednesday. “And so the timing was expedient.”
Texas Values is a conservative organization based in Austin that proposes to help retain and advance a culture of “traditional” family values in the state of Texas.
“The Texas Values vision is to stand for biblical, Judeo-Christian values by ensuring Texas is a state in which religious liberty flourishes, families prosper, and every human life is valued,” the organization’s mission statement explains.
The statement also included the details that Texas Values promotes its core values of faith, family, and freedom in Texas through policy research; public education and standing for truth in the media; grassroots mobilization; voter education; reviewing legislation and providing legal analysis; and testifying at the Texas Legislature, State Board of Education and other governmental entities.
Feyereisen said Tuesday’s rally operated fully in line with those motivations.
“I felt like there were a lot of Christians standing up for family values and protecting family values,” she said. “Such as the consideration of the marriage amendment, asking, ‘Do we want marriage to be a woman and a man?’ I think it was the right time to stand up and speak up about that. And it was a beautiful day, like a May day, and we were picketing for religious freedom and protecting values that we already have.”
During Tuesday’s event in Austin, Feyereisen said she also attended meetings with other pregnancy resource center directors from across the state. In addition, she said, the ABBA Women's Center was recognized on the House of Representatives floor by Rep. Jodie Laudenberg.
Additionally, the day included an appearance by Sen. Dan Patrick, author of Senate Bill 16 — which authorizes abortionists to perform an ultrasound on a prospective abortion patient and make it available for viewing at least two hours prior to the operation.
Feyereisen credited Patrick for the concept, which passed in spring 2011.
“That was of interest to us, because with this bill, girls are allowed to see their sonogram even if they are going in for an abortion,” she said. “But believe it or not, Planned Parenthood doesn’t show them their sonogram. “It was a good bill. It will make people pause and think about the life choice they’re about to make.”
For more information about Texas Values, visit www.txvalues.org.