NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — The Anti-Defamation League is taking a New York lawmaker to task for comparing abortion to the Holocaust.
State Senator and pentecostal minister Ruben Diaz is firmly standing behind controversial remarks he made about abortion.
“I’m not that kind of politician. I live with my conscience. I live with my belief. This is my belief,” he said Wednesday while raising a Bible.
In his recent “What You Should Know” newsletter, the Bronx Democrat compared abortion to the Holocaust, saying “Hitler was pro-choice. He chose to send the Jews to Auschwitz. That was not their choice, that was Hitler’s choice.” The ADL thinks Diaz should have thought twice before invoking images of the Holocaust.
“There are dozens of ways that the senator could have found a way to say he was anti-abortion, but he chose to use an analogy that demeans the Holocaust,” said Etzion Neuer, Deputy Director of the New York Anti-Defamation League.
The group also called out the state senator for similar remarks in 2005.
“It’s not the first time the senator has engaged in these types of analogies,” Neuer said. “We called it to his attention, he chose to ignore our statement to him and that’s something we find that troubling as well.”
Diaz has offered an apology for any offense.
“If I offend people with what I say, I apologize. I do not intend to offend anyone. I just intend to call people’s attention to abortion,” he said.
Meanwhile, City Council Speaker Christine Quinn is spearheading a fight for a change in the state health law that currently prohibits providing abortion care to a woman if she experiences serious health complications late in her pregnancy.
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She is forcefully supporting legislation that would treat late-term abortion as a public health issue and not as a potential crime. She insists her body is her business.
“I don’t want the City Council speaker, the mayor, the governor, the President, the Congress — I don’t want anybody involved, you know in my uterus, my vagina, my livery, my kidney, my lung — none of it. It’s mine and I’m going to get the best medical people to advise me on it,” Quinn said.
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