Sunday, November 30, 2008

An Audience with Jane Roe

Outside the pro-life movement, very few people know the name Norma McCorvey. She is better known as Jane Roe of Roe v. Wade, the U.S. supreme court decision that legalised abortion across America.

When the abortion lobby talk in emotive terms about the need to 'save Roe' they have a nasty tendency to forget that Roe does not need saving from pro-life campaigners - Jane Roe/Norma McCorvey changed her mind about abortion and joined the pro-life cause years ago.

In this video, Norma talks frankly about the terrible mistake she made in helping bring abortion to America. Courageous individuals like Norma McCorvey and Bernard Nathanson are some of the most powerful witnesses to the sanctity of life and to the power of the truth to convert all those involved with abortion.

Saturday, November 29, 2008

More on Down's Syndrome

Scientists from the Institutes of Health, Maryland, have made an apparent breakthrough in experiments on unborn mice with a similar condition to Down's. The scientists injected the unborn mice with proteins and found that the mice brains developed normally. It should be noted that this is not a 'cure' for Down's Syndrome as some reports in the media are suggesting and it will be some years before tests are carried out on humans, but it does raise the strong possibility that effective treatments may one day become available for conditions such as Down's.

One of the objections raised to potential treatments of this kind was that it could be used "just to ensure that somebody conforms to our idea of an ideal standard" but I find it difficult to see why there could be an ethical problem here. We do not talk about corrective surgery for cleft palate or bilateral squint as 'conformity to an ideal standard'. There are thousands of medical and surgical interventions that are used to treat disabling and potentially disabling conditions across the spectrum and all to the good.

Where there may be a problem would be if these drugs turned out to carry a high risk of miscarriage, in which case the risk to the child's life might outweigh the potential benefits. Like the Down's Syndrome Association, I will be watching this story with interest.

Friday, November 28, 2008

The Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) at 60

Many things can be said about the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR). It is the foundation of international human rights law, the first universal statement on the basic principles of inalienable human rights, and a common standard of achievement for all peoples and all nations. As the UDHR approaches its 60th birthday, it is timely to emphasize the document’s enduring relevance, its universality, and that it has everything to do with all members of the human family. Today, the UDHR is more relevant than ever in a world threatened by racial, economic and religious divides, and we must therefore defend and proclaim the universal principles --first enshrined in the UDHR-- of justice, fairness and equality that people across all boundaries hold so deeply. We must also take cognisance of the threats to the UDHR from those who reinterpret it to suit their own ideologies.

For all its lofty ideals the UDHR has failed to protect the most vulnerable members of our society who cannot speak for themselves. Babies once conceived and prior to birth are treated as disposable and millions are terminated annually. This failure is not so much a failure of the actual text of the document as the inadequacy or deliberate manipulation of its interpretation and therefore its implementation.

The UDHR explicitly includes all members of the human family and yet those who interpret and implement it and the conventions enacted as part of the International Bill of Rights have allowed themselves to be diverted by ideologues and have supported their demands rather than serving the truth.

It is incumbent on all to revisit the issue of interpretation and reassess the implementation of the UDHR. We must ask ourselves why are some members of the human family not given the protection they are entitled to? Why have the most vulnerable members of our society, babies once conceived and prior to birth been deliberately excluded from the protection that is theirs by right?

All attempts to re-interpret the Universal Declaration to exclude the baby prior to birth, are shameful, they are unlawful and unjust. It is to be hoped that those who hold high offices at the UN such as the Secretary General and the High Commissioner for Human Rights together with the different arms of the UN such as the General Assembly and the Human Rights Council, will reject the current inadequate interpretations placed on the document by NGO’s and some members of the interpretative committees who are hostile to embryonic life, and courageously stand for the rights of the weakest members of society and defend them against ideologies, which seek to destroy them.

The humanity of the embryo is beyond question and we must all recognize the scientific fact that the human being, from the single cell stage of development of the human embryo : whether brought into being by sexual reproduction or otherwise, and whether inside or outside the womb of a woman, is a separate and distinct, living human individual who will progress through all stages of development in a continuum, through the embryonic and fetal stages, to birth, unless it dies or is killed. The embryo therefore is a distinct and autonomously developing human being, whose right to survival, guaranteed by the UDHR, depends upon a protected, hospitable and interpersonal environment that provides life sustenance in the form of nutrition, hydration, and oxygen -- the basic rights of every human being at all stages of life.

It is time to look afresh at the issues, and to redress the faulty interpretation and implementation of the UDHR. It is time for a new and radical approach which will include the protection, which the international community originally decided to put in place and which will help to create a new momentum leading towards the goal of cherishing all human life at all stages of development. It is time the killing stopped

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Choice on Earth

The Curt Jester has a somewhat disturbing post about Planned Parenthood's Christmas products. In past years, Planned Parenthood has sold cards entitled Choice on Earth and is now promoting gift cards to give to girls as Christmas presents, so that they can get money off 'services' including contraception and abortion.

It says a great deal for the demonic nature of the abortion lobby that they are prepared to use the birth of Christ to promote the killing of babies and apparently fail to see the obscene irony involved. The Curt Jester has designed a few cards of his own, including a modification of Choice on Earth with the subheading: "continuing where King Herod left off. Make sure no infant interferes with your life."

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Facing Crisis Pregnancy

Feminists for Life of America's latest video records a speech by a student who discovered, shortly after she started university, that she was pregnant. The temptation with campaigning sometimes is to dwell too much on the extreme cases. They do need to be acknowledged, but in many ways Chaunie's story is more typical of the sort of situation that might tempt a young woman into seeking abortion and offers insights into the ways in which the pro-life movement can support women facing a crisis pregnancy.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Going the Distance for Life

This is a compelling video encouraging American pro-lifers to pray and campaign to protect innocent life. Given the impact the Obama presidency is likely to have on pro-life activities across the globe, particularly at the United Nations, we should all be inspired to redouble our efforts to protect the most vulnerable members of our society.

Shortly before he died, Pope John Paul II warned against a ‘new ideology of evil, perhaps more insidious and hidden than its predecessors, which attempts to pit even human rights against the family and against man’

Abortion is not, and never can be, a human right. We live in times however in which real human rights are being usurped by the attempts of certain elites to create new human rights including a right to abortion, despite the objections of many countries and people of goodwill everywhere.

Sadly this new ideology is moving centre stage and given the pro-abortion statements of President elect Obama, his previous anti life history and now the choice of anti life Democrats in the highest offices, the stage has been set for an increased slaughter of innocents on a global basis. This video calls for prayer which of course is the first weapon in our armoury, unfortunately most of us tend to use it only as our last resort. I am reminded of the episode in the Gospels where the apostles who were competent sailors only woke Jesus and called on his help as a last resort when the boat was in danger of sinking, and He calmed the storm. Let us then pray-pray-pray that He may also intervene to protect life and calm this particular storm

H/T The Hermeneutic of Continuity

Monday, November 24, 2008

Crying without tears

Esperanza Puente's new book 'I Aborted' offers a frank account of the abortion process from the viewpoint of a woman who has had an abortion. It is a world away from the friendly, supportive and professional image abortion providers like to give themselves. Puente writes:

“In the waiting room, women cry without tears and scream without a voice... the standard procedure is that women don’t see ultrasounds of the baby, which is considered to be a ‘cluster of cells’ or a blob of tissue, as one doctor in Madrid told a woman a few days ago.”

She describes the behaviour of staff as 'cold' and mentions a particularly horrific moment when she found the remains of her dead baby that a nurse had forgotten to take away.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Victory over Violence

Feminists for Life of America have released a video of a talk given by Joyce Ann McCauley-Benner, a woman who discovered she was pregnant two months after being raped. Rather than seeing herself as a 'hard case', she describes her decision to take care of the baby as her own victory over violence. One of the slogans of Feminists for Life is 'Say No to the Status Quo.'

Warning: The talk contains descriptions of sexual assault and may be unsuitable for some viewers.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Eugenics and other Evils

A draft law is being considered in The Netherlands that would punish 'unfit' parents by forcing women to use contraception for a number of years and taking the baby away as soon as it was born if the woman refused the order to take contraception and became pregnant.

Khaled Diab in The Guardian, voices disquiet at the proposed law, warning:

This government may have all the best intentions, but what's to guarantee that a future government doesn't use the law, or an amendment of it, to target "undesirable" groups, such as Roma, gays, religious minorities and immigrants?

More immediately, there's the question of how we would define the "unfit parents" who should be deprived from the right to bear children. Should the law apply only to parents who pose a clear and present danger to potential offspring or could it be more loosely interpreted to apply to those of whose parenting style the state disapproves?

As numerous commentators at the end of the article point out, this is essentially just another piece of legislation stemming from the eugenicist ideology so popular during the Interwar period, which was of course promoted by the likes of Marie Stopes and Margaret Sanger. Others quote the number of European countries and US states that had eugenicist laws in place until the early 70s, which involved the compulsory sterilisation of those regarded as mentally and physically unfit, along with some racial minorities.

An article in Second Spring analyses the work of G.K. Chesterton in campaigning against and defeating the Mental Deficiency Bill in 1912. Chesterton was one of the only vocal and influential opponents of eugenics at a time when eugenics was being publicly embraced and promoted by England's liberal intelligentsia.

As the horrors of past eugenics programmes fade in memory and this evil ideology once again takes hold of society, we need another G.K. Chesterton to sound the alarm.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Excellent Tablet Editorial

No, I have not lost possession of my mental faculties. I don't like the Tablet, but their arguments are impeccably correct in this case so I really did mean to use the word 'excellent' in the title of this post. Whilst trawling through The Tablet website the other day, I stumbled upon an editorial about Daniel James, the young rugby player who committed suicide in Switzerland after being paralysed in an accident. The editorial focuses on Warnock's deplorable position and the inevitable slippery slope caused by calls for the legalisation of assisted suicide:

While Lady Warnock's utilitarian approach has shocked many, she has also done society a service in showing how efforts to reform the law at one level - in the name of compassion for the terminally ill - leads swiftly to calls for even greater changes in the law in the name of personal autonomy. It is becoming seemingly more acceptable to suggest that the physically disabled and those suffering from mental affliction should organise their deaths as a reasonable response to their condition.

A law permitting assisted suicide would be a message to the vulnerable that their lives are no longer valued. Rather than being barbaric, as some suggest, the outlawing of assisting suicide is protective of those in greatest need of care.

Baroness Warnock's suggestion that those suffering from dementia would be doing the right thing if they chose to die could well be taken up as a solution to scarce resources. But a society that puts resources before patients is neither a compassionate nor a civilised one.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Self-delusion is not the same as ignorance

A heated discussion has erupted on Standing on My Head, inspired by a post discussing the parallels between abortion and slavery.

Some interesting moral arguments have been raised, particularly on the extent to which abortionists realise that they are ending human lives. It was pointed out by one commentator that the Nazis knew they were exterminating human lives when they committed acts of genocide, but abortionists are acting in ignorance. I pointed out that this does not seem to me to be an acceptable argument.

The abortion lobby repeatedly dismisses the humanity of the unborn, using expressions such as 'bundle of cells', 'pregnancy tissue', 'the contents of the uterus' etc etc but this is sheer self-delusion. The scientific evidence is there for the world to see. As a fellow campaigner and mother-of-two put it:

When I started showing signs of going into premature labour, nobody at the hospital spoke of the fetus or the products of conception. It was 'let's have a listen to the baby's heartbeat', 'the baby's moving a lot', 'we're doing everything we can to save the baby' and even 'this is really going to hurt, love, just think of the baby.' I can't fathom the logic of obstetricians who refer to a wanted child as a baby and work through the night to save its life, only to dismiss an unwanted child as a waste product to be removed.

The abortion lobby can be described as many things, but it is not ignorant.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Lisbon Treaty Update

David Fieldsend of Care for Europe who was in Dublin to address an Oireachtas (Irish Government) committee hearing on the Lisbon Treaty also addressed a meeting in Buswell’s hotel in Dublin on Tuesday 11th Nov.
Fieldsend told the meeting that EU Institutions are increasingly seeking to influence national practice in the area of social issues previously felt to be a matter of subsidiarity. Seeming ‘safeguards’ in the Treaties appear to have been all too easily got round by re-classifying the issue to appear under a different heading or article of the Treaties where action is not restricted – or just by putting a new and unexpected interpretation on the Treaty wording.
He instanced a variety of ways in which the EU had managed to expand competence into areas which should have remained within national arena such as the decision to give EU funding to embryonic stem-cell research a decision which was backed by the Irish Government.

According to Fieldsend, while there is as yet no EU legislation which specifically refers to abortion many reports and resolutions have been adopted – and at least one piece of legislation which include the ambiguous expression ‘sexual and reproductive health and rights’. Although all official answers from both the European Commission and the Council of the EU consistently deny any European competence to act in the matter of abortion most international organisations which use this expression (certainly including UN agencies, WHO, etc) interpret it as including access to abortion (usually under the title ‘preventing unsafe abortion’). It is also frequently quoted in court cases across the world where family planning NGOs (of which the ‘Center for Reproductive Rights’ is a leader) seek to pressurise southern hemisphere countries to allow unrestricted access to abortion.

Fieldsend also referred to the Maruko judgment of the European Court of Justice (ECJ), which extends to same-sex partners the pension rights previously enjoyed only by spouses. The significance of this decision is that the EU is supposed to have no competence, or power, in the area of family law. The further significance is that the Employment Equality Directive, on which this decision was based, explicitly safe-guarded member-state marriage law, and yet the ECJ still came to this judgment. (Irish Independent 14th Nov.)There was the attempt by the European Commission to restrict the right of religious schools in Ireland and elsewhere to employ individuals who will respect their ethos, again in the name of employment equality.
In addition, the Commission has told Germany that its civil partnership model for same-sex couples must be made equal to marriage, also in the name of equality. Will it tell us the same thing?
Other examples can be given but what we are seeing again and again is the EU turning the principle of non-discrimination into an absolute, as though no other social goods exist. Added to this is competence creep on the part of the EU, plus activism by the ECJ, which drive forward this agenda and treat the principle of subsidiarity as though it doesn't exist.

Fieldsend told the meeting that past experience does not give him great comfort that just keeping something out of the Treaty is a cast iron guarantee and he recommended that Ireland ringfence Articles 40-44 of the Constitution which protect fundamental rights, including religious freedom, the right to life and the family based on marriage.
For the full reassurance of religious voters I would respectfully suggest that at least the whole of Articles 40 to 44 of the Constitution should be considered for protection and that such protection should not be merely from the Treaty content itself, but also extend to any laws subsequently enacted under those Treaties and the judgments of the European Court of Justice

A Pro-Abortionist's Dream

Vincenzina Santoro, Chief United Nations Representative of the American Family Association of New York, has published a summary of Congressman Chris Smith's comments on President Obama, made during an interview for Family News in Focus.

He states what many of us at the UN already know, but with so many people still deluding themselves about the terrible consequences an Obama presidency will have on the culture of life at the UN, Chris Smith's comments need to be heard.

Representative Chris Smith, Republican from New Jersey and the main defender of life in the United States Congress, was interviewed Sunday morning (November 16th) on the radio program “Weekend Edition of Family News in Focus.” His remarks on the incoming president were frightening (but not new) to all supporters of life, especially at the United Nations.

According to Rep. Smith, “on day one, sadly and tragically,” by executive order (more than 250 have been identified) Obama will overturn every pro-life policy in the United States. The list includes the Mexico City Policy dating back to the Reagan Administration in 1984 that refuses funding to NGOs that promote the inclusion of coerced abortion in family planning. Obama will support the Freedom of Choice Act (FOCA) that provides taxpayer funds for abortions including partial-birth abortions, will completely nullify all state laws restricting abortion including references to parental notification, and permit all kinds of stem cell research.

Rep. Smith called attention to an Obama speech to Planned Parenthood, available on YouTube, in which he stated that his “first priority” as president will be FOCA and lifting all restrictions on abortion – measures that go well beyond Roe v. Wade.

“Obama will be the pro-abortionist dream and the culture of life nightmare” according to Rep. Smith. Nowhere should the “state of euphoria” be greater than at the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) as funding for this UN entity had been cut off for several years by the current Bush Administration. UNFPA will now receive US taxpayer money to promote its anti-life agenda even more forcefully. Rep. Smith stated that UNFPA is in “co-management” in coercive abortion and child abuse. He reminded listeners that at the Nazi trials at Nuremberg forced abortion was “considered a crime against humanity.” Finally, only pro-abortion individuals will be considered for the Supreme Court.

According to Rep. Smith’s estimates, Obama favors a doubling of spending on anti-life matters from $450 million to one billion dollars.

Obama’s actions will have a devastating effect on countries of Latin America and Sub-Saharan Africa with unrestricted pursuit of abortion by UNFPA and the large number of anti-natal NGOs.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

An Abortionist Converted

Catholic News Agency carries the extraordinary story of a Serbian abortionist who converted to the pro-life cause after performing 48,000 abortions.

Stojan Adasevic performed up to 35 abortions a day at the height of his career until he began to have a recurring dream in which he saw children running away from him in terror whilst a man in a habit watched him in silence. Finally, the man told him that the children were those he had killed through abortion and that his name was Thomas Aquinas - a name that Adasevic had never heard of, having had an entirely secular Soviet education.

When he refused to perform any more abortions, he was punished by the authorities. His salary was halved, his daughter lost her job and his son was barred from university, but he persevered with his pro-life mission and is now a leading campaigner for the unborn.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Pro-abort MP told to get lost

Diane Abbott, Labour MP for Hackney, just can't leave Northern Ireland alone. After her failed attempt at imposing abortion on Northern Ireland, the minister for Northern Ireland, Shaun Woodward, has spelt out in plain English that Westminster will not extend the 1967 Abortion Act to the province and that any debate on the issue should take place within Northern Ireland's own legislative assembly.

Undeterred, Ms Abbott intends to continue her campaign to interfere in other people's legislative business and has said she will propose a private bill to bring abortion to Northern Ireland.

Bernie Smyth of Precious Life had this to say: "My message to Diane Abbott is butt out of Northern Ireland and stop interfereing in our protection of our unborn children."

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Thoughts of an EU reformist

A detailed and disturbing account at Orwell's Picnic of Kathy Sinnot's recent lecture given at the MaterCare conference. She describes the essentially anti-democratic nature of the European Union and the promotion of the culture of death with devastating clarity.

Describing the way the European Court of Justice works, she stated:

Judges slip very easily into law-making and judicial activism and this is particularly true in the European Court of Justice for a particularly interesting reason. Most of our High Courts or Supreme Courts or whatever you call them in your own countries – the job of most of those courts is to uphold your constitutions. But the actual stated job of the European Court of Justice – the EU’s court is to promote the European project. So, it takes whatever document or whatever treatise, and it decides what interpretation at this point in time will best promote the European project; not what do those words truly mean and what do case law tell us about them. And this is a particularly worrying thing in terms, again, of the Lisbon Treaty because for the first time, we had a Charter of Rights included – called the Fundamental Charter of Rights and those rights had very interesting things like ‘Everyone has a right to life.’ But, of course, the only country fighting that statement was Ireland because we wanted to retain our Right to Life – and we knew that a statement like “Everyone has a right to life” – actually did not apply to such things as abortion and euthanasia. It actually meant the opposite and it would mean the opposite because it was the European Court in Luxemburg that would decide what it meant and that was why countries that are very invested in things like abortion – even countries that are invested in policies of euthanasia – had no problem ratifying the Lisbon Treaty and even welcoming this fundamental charter because, in fact, it would reinforce their policy not counter-act it.

Reading this post made me all too aware of the vital work MEPs like Kathy are doing in the European Parliament, against appalling odds. It should be noted that Kathy describes herself as an EU-reformist, not a Eurosceptic. This is, I think, an important clarification to make, as it is quite common for people to assume that anyone who dares question the functioning of the EU is against it per se. Just as a true patriot should regard it as a duty to stand up to unjust laws in his own country, a good European should regard it as a duty to stand up to the injustices currently being carried out in the name of the European project.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Clarification from Bishop Hollis

Possibly in answer to the protests his earlier message caused, Bishop Hollis has added a clarification.

Barack Obama: A Clarification
I would like to add some words to the statement that I issued last week on the election of Barack Obama as President of the United States of America.

I genuinely welcome his election because he represents such a different political profile from that of President Bush. America – and the world – needs that political change and will benefit from it.

However, I am aware of what he has said about abortion and about the so-called freedom of choice and I deplore his words. There is no way in which I endorse his position on these crucial “life” matters, nor, as a Catholic bishop, could I ever do so.

Perhaps it’s naïve to say this but I hope and pray that the realities of the political process will mean that he has to temper his personal policies on these all important life issues and pay serious attention to the outrage with which many view his “life” agenda.

Bishop Crispian Hollis

h/t Catholic Action UK

Friday, November 14, 2008

Thanks, Bishop Hollis

Oh dear, the Bishop of Portsmouth, Crispin Hollis, has done it again. In his excitement and enthusiasm about the election of the most anti-life president in history, Bishop Hollis has issued a special message to mark the occasion:
“With millions of others, I have been thrilled by Barack Obama’s victory and I thank God for it. For me, it represents a rare moment of hope and optimism which shows American democracy at its best and it is of seismic significance and potential for the whole global community. And so, more than ever now, he deserves and needs us to keep him in our prayers.”

Yes, well for those of us with naturalisation papers to planet Earth, the picture is rather different. Vacuous adulation like this really causes me grave concern because it shows at best a lack of understanding (and I very much doubt Hollis is lacking in understanding) and at worst, a callous disregard for the fate of millions of innocent human lives who will never benefit from Obama's hope.

It is certainly major news when a non-white has been elected to the highest office in the US, Obama however is the most pro-abortion President ever to be elected to this high office. I cannot therefore share Bishop Hollis' moment of hope and optimism but there is one issue on which I am in complete agreement with him, Obama certainly does need our prayers, we must pray for a Pauline conversion and a very urgent one at that, otherwise the consequences of his threathened actions will be disastrous. Of particular concern is his promise to IPPF to sign the freedom of choice act.

I would add that in addition to prayer for Obama, the United States needs our prayers and in particular we need to pray for the protection of all innocent life

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Jamie Carragher

A heartwarming story going round blogosphere at the moment. Footballer Jamie Carragher describes in his autobiography, his Catholic mother's refusal to have him aborted in spite of pressure from doctors who claimed that he was disabled. He writes:

'Our Lord told me to have the baby', she still claims.
She's the rock on which my family is built.
I owe everything to that decision
she took thirty years ago.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Nature is a harsh judge

Mary Magdalen has a link to an extract from a documentary on the demographic crisis facing the western world. Fr Blake expresses a certain degree of anxiety about such videos because of the possible racialist agenda (not enough of us, way too many of you in a manner of speaking) of these documentaries, but I am not sure this is what the video is attempting to convey.

In any case, as one message in the combox stated rather ominously:

Fr Ray, as the (immigrant) mother of two babies and counting, I would agree that economic policies make it very hard for families in this country but that is not the real issue, it is the social expectation that 'two children are enough' and that babies are a burden who cramp your lifestyle. I come across this attitude among Christians all the time, including among 'orthodox' Catholics.

My children are mixed race and I have no time whatsoever for people who moan about shrinking indigenous populations when those populations themselves are contracepting and aborting themselves out of existence. God is merciful, nature is harsh.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

In a muddle about the 'right' to die

The BBC website carries a characteristically confused article about what it describes as a 'right to die' case involving a thirteen-year-old girl. Hannah Jones suffered from childhood leukaemia and the drugs she has had to take from the age of five have weakened her heart, leaving her terminally ill. She has refused a heart transplant which may or may not be successful and even if successful would require medication for the rest of her life. She has shown herself to be competent to make such a decision and has convinced the authorities that she is not being coerced by anyone else into refusing treatment.

Contrary to media reports, this case has nothing to do with euthanasia. It can be perfectly ethical for a person to refuse burdensome treatment and this appears to be what Hannah is asking: that she be allowed to live out the rest of her life at home and to be spared invasive treatment that offers only a limited prospect of success. She has in many way made a courageous decision and it should be respected, but it should be seen for what it is - a decision to refuse treatment, not a desire to die.

Monday, November 10, 2008

An abortion survivor speaks

Melissa Ohden's extraordinary story, captured here on video, echoes that of Gianna Jessen, the abortion survivor publicly attacked by Barack Obama for exposing his record on infant protection legislation. Like Gianna, Melissa's teenage mother underwent a late-term saline abortion but Melissa was born alive and astonished doctors by surviving. She describes the procedure and her subsequent adoption by a loving couple. Particularly moving is her description of the moment her adoptive mother had to tell her the truth about her origins.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

God save Spain's Pro-Life Queen!

I would never have described myself as a monarchist, but I have to admire the courage and highly-principled stand of the Queen of Spain, Doña Sofia Margarita Victoria Frederica, on the life issues. A new book based on interviews with her has caused a stir in her country after she expressed her opposition to abortion and euthanasia.

In her own words:

"It is necessary to respect every living child, every child that has begun to live. And to be in favor of life is not backward, nor is it something confined to Christianity. It is to follow the natural law."

Of death with dignity she adds:

"Life and death are not in our hands. Death with dignity? I'm completely in agreement. Those who are in agony should be in better conditions, these are their final moments. For humanity's sake, they should have the pain taken away, and for that there are sedatives, palliatives. I don't think that any doctor, any nurse, any health worker, should be willing to kill someone, even if it is requested or it is required by the hospital."

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Official: lighted matches have a tendency to start fires

Here is a shocking piece of news. Researchers have discovered that if young people are constantly being exposed to images of attractive people burning houses down and playing with matches, if these programmes contain the strong message that being an arsonist is 'cool', 'grown-up' and involves no serious risk of injury or loss to anyone, young people are much more likely to start fires. The media cannot understand why this should be the case. The Government and their faithful agencies are equally baffled as to why handing teenagers boxes of matches as well as promoting the message that arson is a good idea, appears to be aiding and abetting this problem. Indeed, they doubt this is really the case. Teenagers are, by their very nature, prone to starting fires and it is far better if they are taught to do so in an open, responsible, adult....[cont. page 98]

I can't be the only person who choked on their morning cornflakes, having it solemnly announced to me via the radio news that explicit television programmes portraying sex as a glamorous recreational activity devoid of any negative consequences are increasing the teenage pregnancy rate. Good heavens, really? Can't think why that should happen.

Predictably, the give-toddlers-condoms brigade are using this latest piece of research to argue in favour of exposing children to yet more sexually explicit material (in the classroom not on the television so that's all right then). Society needs to wake up and take responsibility for this moral crisis before any more young people are sucked into a pattern of behaviour that causes such physical, mental and emotional suffering, whether or not a pregnancy occurs.

Friday, November 7, 2008

MPs named and shamed

His Hermeneuticalness has produced a list of Catholic MPs who voted in favour of the recent embryology bill, with the comment that there hardly seems to be any point in listing Catholic MPs in the Catholic Directory when they have no qualms about voting for evil legislation. I was particularly disturbed by the presence of two Papal knights on the list, but I can think of stranger choices for a Papal knighthood in recent years...

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Amnesty for Babies

Back in September, I blogged on the Amnesty for Babies campaign to recognise the rights of nascent human beings. I am writing again to ask readers to consider signing the two petitions currently being circulated by Amnesty for Babies, one general petition, the other specifically for scientists and members of the medical profession.

With a strongly anti-life US president, the battle for the lives of the unborn at the UN will become increasingly difficult and necessary. Please consider adding your name to the campaign.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Pro-Life concern following Obama election

So, US voters have made their choice: President elect Barack Obama.

They have chosen a president who:

Was unable (or unwilling), when asked, to say when life begins. He declared it to be above his pay-grade.

* Co-sponsored the "Freedom of Choice Act,” which would overturn the ban on partial-birth abortion, require taxpayer funding of abortion, and strike down virtually all limits on abortion, such as parental notification laws.

* Has stated “I have consistently advocated for reproductive choice and will make preserving women’s rights under Roe v. Wade a priority as President."

* Voted FOUR times against legislation that would have protected the lives of children who survived abortion.

* Could overturn the Mexico City Policy and will appoint only pro-abortion judges to the Supreme Court.

US citizens must now face the consequences of their decision but this decision will inevitably have consequences throughout the world. President elect Obama's seemingly unstoppable campaign was likened to a whirlwind and we must all now reap the whirlwind

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Sexualising five-year-olds

An e-petition is circulating, asking the British Government not to introduce sex education lessons for children as young as five.

Government plans to impose sex education on infants has been greeted with considerable public anger, which leads me to hope - just a little - that the sex-obsessed authorities might have gone a step too far this time and that the whole thing could backfire if individual citizens persist in condemning these evil plans.

If you are involved with schools in the UK, particularly if you have school-age children, please consider becoming involved with SPUC's Safe at School campaign.

Monday, November 3, 2008

Meet the 'pro-life' MP who does not oppose abortion

John Smeaton's blog features a correspondence between a pro-life campaigner and Claire Curtis-Thomas MP, a Catholic and co-chair of the All Party Parliamentary Pro-Life Group. In it, Curtis-Thomas reveals herself to be patronising - claiming that her constituent has 'missed the point' when she clearly knew what she was talking about - and anti-life in her claims that many clauses within the embryology bill are 'very necessary and welcome'. She cites no examples, probably because their simply are none. The bill is unethical to the core, a fact that should not have needed explaining to a supposedly pro-life MP.

But the problem is that Claire Curtis-Thomas is not genuinely pro-life and her position within the APPPLG is rapidly becoming a national embarrassment for the pro-life movement. No pro-life group can retain any credibility whatsoever when one of its senior members has stated publicly: "I am not opposed to abortion. I believe that women should have the right to choose. I just hope they don't choose to have an abortion."

Since Claire Curtis-Thomas feels unable to do the courageous thing and stand up for life, APPPLG need to act. They need to expel the anti-life MPs from within their own ranks before they can expect to have any positive impact on the rest of Parliament.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Gianna Jessen responds

Gianna Jessen has released a second advertisement in response to a personal attack on her by presidential candidate Barack Obama.

Jill Stanek, executive director of, who are behind the ad, said:

“Senator Obama had the audacity to go after Gianna Jessen, born alive after a failed abortion, and call her and the ad she appeared in ‘a despicable lie.' We want to make sure voters are aware of Barack Obama’s extreme stance on abortion and that he voted four times, while an Illinois State Senator, to deny medical care to infants born alive after abortions.”

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Shock decision by Irish University to carry out embryo research

University College Cork decided earlier this week that the College will involve itself in embryonic stem cell research confirming newspaper reports to that effect newspaper reports

The governing body of UNIVERSITY College Cork (UCC) today Tuesday 28th Oct accepted a recommendation from the academic council that human embryonic stem cell research be allowed take place at the campus. UCC President Dr Michael Murphy is reported to believe the advantages offered by the findings from embryonic cell stem research outweigh any anxiety people have about the process.

Munster MEP Kathy Sinnott has previously urged UCC to opt for a ban on human embryonic stem cell research during its consultation process has issued a press release in which she says.
"This is terrible news and a sad day for both UCC and Irish science."

"As we speak there are exciting things happening in ethical adult stem cell and cord blood stem cell research and it is passing Ireland by. Already hundreds of genuine treatments have been developed from the ethical research taking place with stem cells and not one has been developed by embryonic but still UCC can not see this."

"It is a great shame to see a wonderful establishment such as UCC with such a proud reputation for education, throwing away all it's years of hard work on this unethical, unproductive and unjustifiable destruction of human life. It is very sad indeed.

In an article in the Irish Independent, David Quinn argued that the Irish government should ban such unethical and unconstitutional research. He noted the secretive behaviour of the university, which stopped pro-life campaigners garnering sufficient support to prevent the vote going in favour of embryo research - which it did by just one vote. He also exposed the dishonesty of the embryo research lobby with its promises of miracle cures and cruel exploitation of disability groups.

It is not too late to stop UCC's shock move and we call on readers to protest to the UCC authorities and Taoiseach Brian Cowen as a matter of urgency requesting immediate rescindment of this appalling decision.