Thursday, October 31, 2013

First steps towards global governance?

UN Report, New York October 30th 2013.
The 3rd Committee of the  UN General Assembly, was addressed on Tuesday 29th October, by the Independent Expert on the promotion of a democratic and equitable international order, Alfred-Maurice de Zayas.
Mr. de Zayas who was appointed under a resolution of the Human Rights Council, called for the establishment of a United Nations Parliamentary Assembly with consultative powers, which according to him would ‘advance the democratic agenda’.
de Zayas proposal for a parliamentary assembly of the UN (UNPA) would be a subsidiary body of the General assembly, initially composed of elected parliamentarians from UN member states and observer states and subsequently directly elected members, delegates being accountable to their constituencies not their governments.
Mr. de Zayas called for a study to be carried out on the added value and the modalities of the creation of such an institution, he did however set out 10 recommendations which include having oversight of the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund.
In a parallel initiative a group within the European Parliament, held an International Meeting, on 16/17 October 2013 in Brussels under the banner ‘Campaign for the Establishment of a United Nations Parliamentary Assembly’.
The outcome of the European Parliament meeting was the issuance of a declaration known as the ‘Declaration of Brussels’ toward a democratic and equitable international order.

It is important and interesting to trace the origins of these ideas and to see how they develop and grow over a period of time.
We are linking to an informative video, which looks at this issue in the context of other related issues such as eugenics, the development of the contraceptive mentality, population control and the hijacking of 3rd level education with a particular focus on Catholic 3rd level colleges in the US.

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Ecuador: abortion will not be decriminalised in the new penal Code

Following the threat of President Correa to resign if debate continued on an attempt by some members of Ecuador’s National Assembly to decriminalize abortion as part of a major revision of its penal code, the draft bill intended to legalize abortion in certain cases was withdrawn last week.
According to a report in the Argentine Independent:
Twenty new crimes will be added Ecuador’s criminal code and abortion laws will remain unchanged after Ecuador’s National Assembly approved two of three parts of the country’s new penal code on the weekend.

The legislature adopted 77 amendments to the Código Orgánico Integral Penal (COIP) relating to the definition of criminal offences and proceedings, with 99 votes in favour, 20 against and six abstaining.

Ecuador’s new penal code – which will now be submitted to President Rafeal Correa for approval – punishes crimes including: femicide, contract killings (both with sentences of up to 26 years in prison), genocide, ethnocide, apartheid, human trafficking, and hate crimes.

Rosana Alvarado, president of the National Assembly said: “The penal code should respond to the society’s needs and only when this is established can it take effect.”

No changes were made to decriminalising abortion when pregnancy results from a woman being raped, which had been supported in parliament in the governing Alianza País party.

Last Friday the Alianza País member Paola Pabon withdrew her draft bill establishing the decriminalisation of abortion in certain cases after President Correa threatened to resign if the debate continued.

“For the unity of the legislators, for the unity of my 100 fellow congressmen, I withdraw my motion so there is no possibility the block could break,” Pabon said.

Pabon and three other female Alianza Pais members in favour of decriminalising abortion for rape victims were absent during the vote as they were attending the Third Legal Congress on Sexual and Reproductive Rights in Mexico.

A coalition of women’s organisations released a statement denouncing the decision to leave abortion laws unchanged. “Far from responding to the needs of the population, it {the code] completely disregards the proposals submitted my women’s organisations and is limited to the personal beliefs of President Correa,” they wrote.

Aside from abortion, article 146 concerning professional malpractice and criminal negligence was also hotly debated. Manslaughter resulting from malpractice now carries a five-year maximum jail sentence.

Among the new offences is the “attempted murder against the President of the Republic” punishable by 10 to 13 years in prison. Further, the crime of treason, which originally only applied to military personnel, now also applies to civilians as well.

Other changes include the addition of crimes against the security of information and communication systems, intended to create a legal framework to prevent cyber crimes.

The changes will come into force pending approval of the final ‘Third Book’ of the new penal code.

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Culture of Life Africa interview with Professor Helen Alvaré

The Culture of Life Africa Blog reported last week on an interview with Professor Helen Alvaré who recently addressed the Pontifical Council for the Laity in Rome at a seminar for the 25th anniversary on Pope John Paul II's document on women- Mulieris Dignitatem.
This is a very enlightening interview and well worth reading.
We have reprinted part of the interview below and the full interview may be found on the this link.

Obianuju Ekeocha: Professor Alvaré, You are American, what are some of the detriments and damages in your country (especially on women and young girls) of this new and emergent culture that has in fact been described by Pope John II as the "Culture of Death"?
Professor Helen Alvaré: a primary one, about which I have written a great deal, is the abrogating of what is essential to the woman and girl, which is her ability to exercise her gift or capacity for the human person. This has been expressly denied or at least placed under suspicion by some versions of feminism which have declared that her freedom lies in : breaking relations with God, denying the possibility of truth, avoiding suffering or sacrifice at all costs, and refusing solidarity with human life, especially the weakest, or any which might claim dependence upon her. It was promised that walling herself off from human beings and human life, would bring freedom, but of course it has produced the opposite. Now, when life, including sexual relations is “all about me,” it turns out it brings no utopia of relationships, or perfect sex, or family happiness …but loneliness, convoluted relations, and objectification of herself and others. In particular, the contraceptive and abortion culture has led to a situation in which sex outside of marriage or any “commitment” is the norm, and if one woman won’t go along another will. This is due to the “risk compensation” effect whereby people believe pregnancy is “insured against”  due to contraception and abortion. But, ironically, because of that effect, greater availability of contraception and abortion has actually led to MORE not less nonmarital pregnancy, MORE not less sexually transmitted infection and MORE not less abortion, divorce, cohabitation, and broken relations

Pope Francis' homily during concluding Mass for pilgrimage of families to Rome

Vatican Information Services report that the pilgrimage of families to Rome as part of the Year of Faith concluded with the Holy Mass celebrated by Pope Francis in St. Peter's Square, which was crowded with participants, as were Via della Conciliazione and the adjacent streets.
Below is the full text of the Holy Father's homily, following the Gospel reading.
“The readings this Sunday invite us to reflect on some basic features of the Christian family.
“First: the family prays. The Gospel passage speaks about two ways of praying: one is false – that of the Pharisee – and the other is authentic – that of the tax collector. The Pharisee embodies an attitude which does not express thanksgiving to God for his blessings and his mercy, but rather self-satisfaction. The Pharisee feels himself justified, he feels his life is in order, he boasts of this, and he judges others from his pedestal. The tax collector, on the other hand, does not multiply words. His prayer is humble, sober, pervaded by a consciousness of his own unworthiness, of his own needs. Here is a man who truly realizes that he needs God’s forgiveness and his mercy.
“The prayer of the tax collector is the prayer of the poor man, a prayer pleasing to God. It is a prayer which, as the first reading says, 'will reach to the clouds', unlike the prayer of the Pharisee, which is weighed down by vanity.
“In the light of God’s word, I would like to ask you, dear families: Do you pray together from time to time as a family? Some of you do, I know. But so many people say to me: But how can we? As the tax collector does, it is clear: humbly, before God. Each one, with humility, allowing themselves to be gazed upon by the Lord and imploring his goodness, that he may visit us. But in the family how is this done? After all, prayer seems to be something personal, and besides there is never a good time, a moment of peace… Yes, all that is true enough, but it is also a matter of humility, of realising that we need God, like the tax collector! And all families, we need God: all of us! We need his help, his strength, his blessing, his mercy, his forgiveness. And we need simplicity to pray as a family: simplicity is necessary! Praying the Our Father together, around the table, is not something extraordinary: its easy. And praying the Rosary together, as a family, is very beautiful and a source of great strength! And also praying for one another! The husband for his wife, the wife for her husband, both together for their children, the children for their grandparents ... praying for each other. This is what it means to pray in the family and it is what makes the family strong: prayer.
“The second reading suggests another thought: the family keeps the faith. The Apostle Paul, at the end of his life, makes a final reckoning and says: 'I have kept the faith'. But how did he keep the faith? Not in a safe! Nor did he hide it underground, like the somewhat lazy servant. Saint Paul compares his life to a fight and to a race. He kept the faith because he didn’t just defend it, but proclaimed it, spread it, took it to distant lands. He stood up to all those who wanted to preserve, to 'embalm' the message of Christ within the limits of Palestine. That is why he made courageous decisions, he went into hostile territory, he let himself be challenged by distant peoples and different cultures, he spoke frankly and fearlessly. Saint Paul kept the faith because, in the same way that he received it, he gave it away; he went out to the fringes, and didn’t dig himself into defensive positions.
“Here too, we can ask: How do we keep our faith as a family? Do we keep it for ourselves, in our families, as a personal treasure like a bank account, or are we able to share it by our witness, by our acceptance of others, by our openness? We all know that families, especially young families, are often 'racing' from one place to another, with lots to do. But did you ever think that this 'racing' could also be the race of faith? Christian families are missionary families. Yesterday in this square we heard the testimonies of missionary families. They are missionary also in everyday life, in their doing everyday things, as they bring to everything the salt and the leaven of faith! Keeping the faith in families and bringing to everyday things the salt and the leaven of faith.
“And one more thought we can take from God’s word: the family experiences joy. In the responsorial psalm we find these words: 'let the humble hear and be glad'. The entire psalm is a hymn to the Lord who is the source of joy and peace. What is the reason for this gladness? It is that the Lord is near, he hears the cry of the lowly and he frees them from evil. As Saint Paul himself writes: 'Rejoice always … The Lord is near'. I would like to ask you all a question today. But each of you keep it in your heart and take it home. You can regard it as a kind of 'homework'. Only you must answer. How are things when it comes to joy at home? Is there joy in your family? You can answer this question.
“Dear families, you know very well that the true joy which we experience in the family is not superficial; it does not come from material objects, from the fact that everything seems to be going well ... True joy comes from a profound harmony between persons, something which we all feel in our hearts and which makes us experience the beauty of togetherness, of mutual support along life’s journey. But the basis of this feeling of deep joy is the presence of God, the presence of God in the family and his love, which is welcoming, merciful, and respectful towards all. And above all, a love which is patient: patience is a virtue of God and he teaches us how to cultivate it in family life, how to be patient, and lovingly so, with each other. To be patient among ourselves. A patient love. God alone knows how to create harmony from differences. But if God’s love is lacking, the family loses its harmony, self-centred individualism prevails and joy fades. But the family which experiences the joy of faith communicates it naturally. That family is the salt of the earth and the light of the world, it is the leaven of society as a whole.
“Dear families, always live in faith and simplicity, like the Holy Family of Nazareth! May the joy and peace of the Lord be always with you!”

Saturday, October 26, 2013

Is sex selective abortion illegal in the UK or not ?

The Daily Mail reports that the UK Chief Medical Officer (Dame Sally Davies) “is to write to all GPs to make it plain that abortions carried out solely on the grounds of the sex of the child are wrong.”

The Daily Mail said “The fact that the letter will be sent out to all family doctors was revealed in an answer to a Parliamentary question by public health minister Jane Ellison earlier this month.”
This initiative is a response to the decision of Keir Starmer, the Director of Public Prosecutions, not to prosecute two abortionists who were caught on camera agreeing to perform sex-selection abortions on a woman posing as a patient. Starmer said that while there were grounds to prosecute the men, it would not be in the “public interest.”

Ann Furedi, the chief executive of the abortion giant British Pregnancy Advisory Service (BPAS), wrote on a website that “doctors are legally free to terminate pregnancies when the parents are unhappy with the sex of the child,” explained the Daily Mail’s Daniel Martin.
 Furedi’s remarks posted on the online magazine “Spiked” resulted in major controversy.

Public health minister Ellison commented that after the letter was sent out, the Department of Health “would then work with relevant royal colleges and medical bodies to keep the guidance under review.”

We’ll have to wait to see if authorities really see sex-selection abortions as a violation of the 1967 Abortion Act. Hopefully, they will.

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Eggsploitation in Ireland

We have previously reported on the issue of fertility firms targeting women and paying them for egg donation a practice that has been tagged as "eggsploitation".

In what can only be described as a new attempt at “eggsploitation” this time in Ireland an advertisment was placed in the Irish Times by a fertility firm inviting women to a ‘free donor egg seminar’. There is no doubt but that this seminar is being arranged to target Irish women for egg donation.
The following is the text of the advertisement
Cork Fertility Centre in collaboration with Shady Grove Fertility invite you to a free Donor Egg Seminar presented by Dr. John Waterstone and Dr. Gilbert Mottla. Our Donor Egg Programme allows patients to access the exceptional services provided locally by Cork Fertility Centre and the vast donor egg database available only at Shady Grove Fertility. Join us for an opportunity to meet with the donor egg teams to discuss the benefits of seeking treatment through our unique partnership.

Monday, Oct 28th, The Shelbourne Hotel, Dublin 2, 19:00
Tuesday, Oct 29th, The River Lee Hotel, Cork, 19:00
young women are often unaware of the risks of egg donation, donors have to take drugs to stimulate egg production, and complications may cause future infertility or even death in rare cases.

Women are usually told that egg donation is a safe procedure, when the reality is decidedly unsafe. No young woman should be used in procedures that jeopardize her own fertility -- indeed her own life -- in order to line the pockets of those who promote the infertility industry's human egg trade.

The Eggsploitation documentary spotlights three women who went through the egg donation process -- including high doses of fertility drugs and egg retrieval surgery. The young women's stories, are a "wake-up call" for those who are unaware of the complications that can result from the "highly unregulated, multi-billion-dollar" infertility industry. All three of the women in the documentary nearly died from the "complications associated with their egg donation." One suffered a stroke that left her brain damaged; another developed breast cancer, and the other developed a health problem associated with ovarian hyper-stimulation.

The human egg donation industry is shameless in claiming safety for the procedure as they solicit young college women through appeals to their vanity, claiming that the girls' attractiveness, IQ, or genetic traits warrant a high payment for participation in what they call a 'humanitarian' act.

The disastrous implications of the practice are set out on the "Eggsploitation" website

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Marie Stopes is forgiven racism and eugenics because she was anti-life

The Royal Mail has come in for major criticism by including Marie Stopes in a set of stamps marking women's achievements.
Marie Stopes was a controversial figure who has been shown as racist and anti-Semitic and who also advocated eugenics. Stopes campaigned to have the poor, the sick and people of mixed race
sterilized, prompting the question, is Marie Stopes really an appropriate icon for Britain's stamps?

Anthony Ozimic of the Society for the Protection of Unborn Children in a statement said: 
'Praising Marie Stopes as a woman of distinction should be as unacceptable as praising Adolf Hitler as a great leader. Both promoted compulsory sterilisation and thereby the eventual elimination of society's most vulnerable members to achieve what they called racial progress.'
Stopes also sent a loving letter and book of her poems to Adolf Hitler.
The following article appears in today’s Telegraph under the banner 'Marie Stopes is forgiven racism and eugenics because she was anti-life'. The article can also be found on this link 
Dear Herr Hitler, Love is the greatest thing in the world: so will you accept from me these (poems) that you may allow the young people of your nation to have them?" These gushing words from an ardent fan (she was lucky Unity Mitford did not scratch her eyes out) were written in August 1939, just a month before this country went to war with Nazi Germany, by Marie Stopes, the "woman of distinction" who will ornament our 50p stamps from October.

Is Marie Stopes really an appropriate icon for Britain's stamps?

Sending the Fuhrer a book of her sentimental poems was an appropriate gesture. This keen advocate of eugenics and subverter of family life had a long career of activity in the politics of human reproduction. In 1919 she urged the National Birth Rate Commission to support mandatory sterilisation of parents who were diseased, prone to drunkenness or of bad character. In 1920, in her book Radiant Motherhood, she demanded "the sterilisation of those totally unfit for parenthood be made an immediate possibility, indeed made compulsory". Her 1921 slogan was: "Joyful and Deliberate Motherhood, A Safe Light in our Racial Darkness."

As a letter writer to yesterday's paper pointed out, her organisation was called the Society for Constructive Birth Control and Racial Progress and her clinics were situated in poor areas, to reduce the birth rate of the local residents. Not that Stopes wanted the working class to stop having children altogether. On the contrary, she was also a supporter of child labour: "Not many years ago the labourer's child could be set to work early and could very shortly earn his keep… The trend of legislation has continuously extended the age of irresponsible youth in the lower and lower middle classes"…

In 1926 Stopes stipulated that the boy she would adopt as a companion for her son would be "completely healthy, intelligent and uncircumcised". In 1935 she was present at the International Congress for Population Science in Berlin, held under the auspices of the Third Reich. On her death she bequeathed her clinic and much of her fortune to the Eugenics Society. Today, Marie Stopes International has nearly 500 centres in 38 countries, performing more than half a million sterilisations a year, and is a major abortion provider.

Considering the hysteria nowadays attaching to issues of race, at first sight it seems extraordinary that Stopes should have earned commemoration on a stamp. To the PC establishment, however, even racist peccadilloes can be ignored to honour a pioneer who helped promote the anti-life culture and relieve women of the intolerable trauma of giving birth to a child with a cleft palate. Eugenic abortion accounts for an increasing proportion of the 7 million "terminations" in Britain since 1967. Poor old Josef Mengele was not eligible for a stamp, being a dead, white male. Perhaps in 2009…

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

ESTRELA report ‘a bridge too far’ even for many Socialist and Liberal MEP’s.

In a resounding victory for common sense, following a short but lively debate in the European Parliament, a majority of MEPs voted to refer the highly controversial resolution on the Estrella report back to the Committee on Women's Rights and Gender Equality.

The resolution on Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights presented by Portugese MEP Edite Estrela, was an assault on the Sovereignty of member states that attempted to make abortion a fundamental human right, remove conscientious objection and introduce pornographic sexuality education even for young children .
The Commission of the Bishops' Conferences of the European Community, COMECE, condemned the resolution and said that the EU had no competence in the matter.

The report although presented by Edite Estrella is reported to be the work of the International Planned Parenthood Federation in Brussels. The fact that the report has been referred back to committee implies, that a revised report cannot not be presented until early next year, thus, limiting the time available to the Parliament to deal with it, prior to the next European elections.

The report and its attack on children proved to be ‘a bridge too far’ even for many Socialist and Liberal MEP’s who may already be looking to their home support bases in their re-election campaigns.

New Perinatal mortality study highlights need for perinatal hospice care

A major national audit of stillbirths and other perinatal deaths up to four weeks after birth has been published by the National Perinatal Epidemiology Centre, based in Cork, which works with Ireland’s 20 maternity hospitals to bring about improvements in maternity services. 
See Independent report.
Each of the maternity units reported detailed information to the centre whenever it recorded a perinatal death - a stillbirth or neonatal death occurring up to 28 days.
The audit shows that major congenital anomaly - such as the brain not developing - was the most common cause of death
highlighting the need to establish perinatal hospice care for babies with fatal fetal abnormalities such as anencephaly .

The study indicates that there were 491 perinatal deaths in the Republic of Ireland during 2011, with stillbirths accounting for the majority of these. The death rates in hospitals varied from 1.9 per 1,000 births to 9.1 per 1,000 births. However when babies with fatal birth defects were excluded and only those who could possibly have survived are counted, the death rates again ranged from 1.5 per 1,000 births to 6.6 per 1,000 births.

The perinatal hospice approach walks with families on their journey through pregnancy, birth, and death, honoring the baby as well as the baby's family. Perinatal hospice is not a place; it is more a frame of mind. It is a way of caring for the pregnant mother, the baby, the father, and all involved with dignity and love. Even in areas without a formal program, parents can create a loving experience for themselves and their baby, and health professionals and family and friends can offer support in the spirit of hospice care.

Overall the study shows that Irish perinatal mortality rates compare favourably with British and European rates. However, the experts who compiled the audit have called for access to specialist perinatal pathology services in each health service region to reduce the mortality rate further.

Monday, October 21, 2013

Molly Dutton could have been an abortion victim, but instead she’s Auburn’s 100th Homecoming Queen

Live Action reported recently on a wonderful story of Molly Anne Dutton who was in grave danger of being aborted before birth but has now, as a young woman, been elected by Auburn University students as their 100th Homecoming Queen.
The story is published on the Live Action News website. The article can be reached on this link and is reprinted below
Auburn University students elected Molly Anne Dutton as their 100th Homecoming Queen and her story became national news. It wasn’t just her bubbly personality or her true beauty that inspired a campus to rally behind her, but her love of life and her life story. If it hadn’t had been for the strength and determination of her birth mother, Molly Anne would never had been born.

Molly Anne’s story is one that should make any woman facing an unplanned pregnancy reconsider the thought of abortion. Her biological mother was sexually assaulted and became pregnant with Molly Anne. But the mother’s husband failed to support his wife, telling her to either abort her baby or he would leave her. She choose her baby.

With the help of Lifeline Children’s Services, a Christian adoption agency based in Birmingham, Alabama, Dutton’s birth mother was able to place her child for adoption rather than abort her. In fact, it was a member of the board of directors for Lifeline Children’s Services who would adopt Molly Anne just two days after her birth. She became the youngest of six children, four of whom are adopted.  In her campaign video, Molly Anne says:

Because that resource was made available to my mother, she decided to give birth to me. And here I am talking to you guys 22 years later.

With the slogan “Light Up LIFE”, Dutton is working to educate the Auburn campus and the world that adoption is a beautiful gift and can light up even the darkest of situations. Fellow students rallied around her and soon Molly Anne’s story made it to Glen Bleck’s website The Blaze. In less than a week, her story has become a main fixture on news channels.

In her video, Molly Anne says that she wants women who become unexpectedly pregnant to know that they are not alone, that there are resources to help them. She is using her campaign to raise money for Lifeline Children’s Services, which she credits her life to, in order to help other women and children.

Saturday, October 19, 2013

Holy See Nuncio to the UN in New York strongly critical of General Comments 14 and 15 of the Committee on the Rights of the Child

Archbishop Francis Chullikatt Apostolic Nuncio of the Holy See to the United Nations in New York, in a statement to the 3rd Committee of the General Assembly has forcefully upheld the right to life of all children born and unborn.
Speaking to Item 65: Promotion and Protection of The Rights of Children Archbishop strongly criticized recent General Comments issued by the Committee on the Rights of the Child which attempted to misrepresent the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child by the promotion of a sexual rights agenda for children.
The following is Archbishop Chullikatt’s statement in full and it can also be accessed on this link.
Mr Chairman:                                                      
             This year’s Secretary General’s Report on the Status of the Convention on the Rights of the Child (A/68/257) helpfully draws attention to child mortality, which goes to the heart of what the Convention in article 6 enshrines as the child’s “right to life, survival and development”. Indeed, without life, all other rights are meaningless. It is a cause for encouragement that his Report concludes that the goal of ending all preventable child deaths is now within our reach.[1]
 Among the key factors for achieving this goal the Report identifies maternal health.[2] This is confirmed by the logic of the Convention itself, which affords the child the right to both pre-natal and post-natal healthcare (article 24(d)). This provision has meaning only if the unborn baby is first afforded the right to life and survival. This accords with my Delegation’s understanding of the Convention’s definition of the term “child”, which article 1 addresses with an explicit terminus ad quem of 18 years and a terminus a quo implicit in the preamble’s clear reference to the child’s rights “before and after birth”.
 It follows that each child must be accorded in the first place the right to be born. This is a right, moreover, which must be protected equally – without discrimination on any grounds, including those of sex or disability or policies dictated by eugenics. Thus, pre-natal diagnosis undertaken for the purpose of deciding whether or not the baby will be permitted to be born is inconsistent with the Convention, which my Delegation regards as the fundamental normative instrument on the rights of the child. The unborn baby is a member of our human family and does not belong to a “sub-category of human beings”.
 Mr. Chairman:
             My Delegation takes a holistic view of both health and education, identified by this year’s Secretary General’s Report as fundamental to the State’s obligations. As the Secretary General acknowledged in his previous year’s Report (A/67/225, paragraph 41): health “extends beyond the physical and mental well-being of an individual to the spiritual balance and well-being of the community as a whole”. This includes the duty to take concrete steps to support parents in their proper role of raising their children, so that, as the Declaration of the Rights of the Child asserts, each child may be given “opportunities and facilities, by law and by other means, to enable him [or her] to develop physically, mentally, morally, spiritually and socially in a healthy and normal manner and in conditions of freedom and dignity.”
Mr. Chairman:
             My Delegation concurs with the Report of the Special Rapporteur on the sale of children, child prostitution and child pornography (A/68/275), that prevention is a key aspect for the protection of children from sale and sexual exploitation.  In this regard, the Report devotes significant attention to the indispensable role of the family for the protection of children.  Indeed, “The family represents the first layer of a protective environment”.[3]  Parents, in the first instance, have the responsibility to secure the conditions of living, necessary for the child’s life, survival and development.[4]
            States have the duty to protect, support and strengthen the family for the best interests of the child.  This is all the more important – as the Report observes — given that poverty, unemployment, disease, disability and difficulty in accessing social services as a result of discrimination and exclusion may affect the ability of parents to care for their children; and that mental or behavioural disorders, conflicts, substance addiction and domestic violence may weaken the ability of families to provide a harmonious and safe environment and make children more likely to engage in risky behaviours.[5]
 Mr. Chairman:
             While protection of the rights of children begins with full respect for children themselves at all stages in their development, from conception onwards, parents, for their part, possess an indispensable role in their formation and education, and the family is the proper place for their development, as the Secretary General’s Report acknowledges.[6] Defence of the rights of the child requires, as its necessary corollary, defence of the family, for which the societal benefits are obvious: it is the family, not the State, that houses our children, feeds them, instructs them, and raises the next generation of society.
 When it comes to the upbringing and education of children, therefore, the provisions of the Convention cannot disregard the specific rights and responsibilities of parents. The Convention perfectly reflects the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, which in its preamble privileges parents’ “prior right”   (article 26.3) in the education of their children – which is to say, a right prior to that of the State or other actors – especially in the important arena of religious liberty which includes human sexuality, marriage and the statute of the family.
With specific regard to “physical, mental, spiritual, moral and social development” (article 27, CRC), the Convention (article 18.1) similarly privileges parents with the “primary responsibility” for their children’s upbringing. These rights and responsibilities of parents in international law are the bulwark of their fundamental right to freedom of religion (art. 14, CRC) in regard to which parents are entirely entitled to choose schools “other than those established by the public authorities, [inclusive of home schooling], which conform to such minimum educational standards as may be laid down or approved by the State and to ensure the religious and moral education of their child [] in conformity with their own convictions” (art.13.3, ICESCR).
 Mr. Chairman:
             In light of the recent output of the Committee on the Rights of the Child, my Delegation would like to address some elements of General Comments 14 and 15. These Comments, my Delegation must point out respectfully, represent only the opinions of the Committee; they do not constitute agreed language and lack all force of judicial precedence. Whatever is contained within them that is not consistent with the normative text of the Convention and other international instruments constitutes a disservice to the best interests of children. Expressions such as “sexual orientation” or “gender identity” (General Comment No. 14 [2013], par. 55, and No. 15 [2013], par. 8)), on which no international juridical consensus exists, are used spuriously and very unfortunately in these Comments. The recommendations, for example, States submit children to education and direction on sexual health, contraception and so-called “safe” abortion (par. 31) without the consent of their parents, caregiver or guardian; abortion be promoted by States as a family planning method (par. 54, 56, 70), and so-called “sexual and reproductive health information or services” be provided by States, irrespective of providers’ conscientious objections (par. 69). Such recommendations are particularly reprehensible. No abortion is ever “safe” because it kills the life of the child and harms the mother.
 The Holy See strongly urges the Committee to revise its General Comments in conformity with its guiding international instruments: beginning with the Convention itself, which affirms the right to life of the child, “before as well as after birth” (Preamble, par. 9), the right of conscience [7], and full respect for the rights, responsibilities and duties of parents regarding their children[8]; and including also the explicit affirmation by the International Conference on Population and Development (ICPD) that abortion should never be promoted as a family planning method (par. 7.24).
Mr. Chairman:
 My delegation calls upon the international community to uphold the clear principles of one of the most ratified Convention’s in international law, so that they will do their part in promoting openness to the gift and richness of life which the child represents, and thus foster the common good of all persons, the attainment of which remains “the sole reason for the existence of civil authorities”[9]. 
 Thank you, Mr. Chairman.

[1] ad para. 68 a.

[2] ad para. 57.

[3] ad para. 36
[4] cf. articles 6 and 27 of CRC
[5] ad para. 37
[6] ad para. 61.

[7] CRC, Article 14; cf. also UDHR, Article 18 and ICCPR, Article 18
[8] CRC, Articles, 3, 5, 7, 9, 14, 18, 27, and 29, c; cf. also UDHR, Article 26,3 and ICCPR Article 18,3
[9] John XXIIII, Encyclical Pacem in terris, 54

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Northern Ireland’s pro-life position under grave attack

The Belfast Telegraph reports that revised guidelines on abortion are to be brought before the Northern Ireland Executive within weeks. 
The move comes after Health Minister Edwin Poots met two pregnant women whose babies suffered such severe abnormalities that they could not survive after birth.

Both women were refused terminations because current legislation in Northern Ireland only permits abortion in very restricted circumstances that do not include lethal foetal abnormality.

A Department of Health spokesman said: "Consultation on draft guidelines published earlier this year has closed. A number of submissions to the consultation have highlighted the issue of lethal foetal abnormality and incompatibility with life.

"Full consideration is currently been given to the all consultation submissions and the minister intends to bring a final version to the Executive for its consideration at an early stage, ideally within a number of weeks."

The new guidance cannot change the law but could provide clarity for medical professionals faced with the prospect of prosecution.

However, pro life campaigners have vowed to challenge any changes through the courts.

"We are prepared to take a case to the High Court if the guidelines do not uphold the rights of the unborn child," said Bernie Smyth from Precious Life.

"There should be no procedures carried out in Northern Ireland that will harm an unborn child. We will not be silenced."

The issue of fatal foetal abnormality is not a reason for a legal abortion in Northern Ireland. It gained prominence after the two women went public last week.

Sarah Ewart said she was forced to travel to London for a termination after her baby was diagnosed with the anencephaly, a severe brain anomaly which meant the skull had not developed properly.

Another woman, known only as Laura, who is 22 weeks pregnant with twins suffering from the same fatal condition, has also been told she will have to fly to England for an abortion.

Northern Ireland is not covered by the 1967 Abortion Act. Every year more than 1,000 women travel from the region to clinics in England, Scotland and Wales where access to an abortion is allowed up to 24 weeks into pregnancy on grounds that include abnormalities which could lead to a child being seriously disabled.
Liam Gibson of SPUC Northern Ireland said in a news release;
"Abortion is not a compassionate response to the diagnosis of fatal disability. Babies with fatal disabilities are no less human than other children and share the same right to life as all other human beings. The law in Northern Ireland respects that right, while the British Abortion Act has led to the situation where it is lawful to kill a disabled child up to birth."

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Controversial UN Development Agenda

The United Nations has, over the last few of years, been working to establish the basis of the next phase of its development agenda as many of its earlier programmes are coming to an end. The International Conference on Population and Development (otherwise known as ICPD or Cairo) which commenced in 1994 will end in December 2014, the Women’s Conference (known as Beijing) and the Millennium Development Goals end a year later in December 2015.
A series of meetings and conferences have been held in different parts of the world to try to establish the different regional priorities. Needless to say this process is targeted by ideologues who are determined to ensure that the final outcome documents contain  their deadly anti-life and family agenda.
One such process known as the ICPD Beyond 2014 Review, is according to a UN website ‘an opportunity to influence the future of global population and development policy at national, regional and global levels, providing a once in a generation chance to define what needs to be done to deliver a more equal, more sustainable world for the 7 billion people - and more - who share it.’

The process is geared to identify progress and achievements towards the goals set out in the Cairo International Conference on Population and Development.
One significant attempt to include this agenda was rejected last year in the Rio + 20 Conference.

Another attempt was made during the most recent UNECA African regional conference, which took place in Addis Ababa from Sept 30th to October 4th, the purpose of which was to conclude a draft development agenda for the African region. A major controversy erupted as a result of attempts by sexual rights activists to include issues such as abortion and sexual orientation in the text. This resulted in 17 of the African Nations in attendance issuing strong reservations to the text which has been called the Addis Ababa Declaration but which has not yet been published in its final form.

In a press release, the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA) noted that 17 countries expressed reservations on three of the commitments in the final document and one the Delegate from Chad told the meeting “It must be put on record that Chad is not party to this declaration,” which he described as being “a subtle way of introducing something which may catch some countries unawares.”. The Zambia Daily Mail reported that “the majority delegates shot down a clause that would seek to promote gay and lesbian rights,” adding that this was “a clear reflection of the position of most African countries on homosexuality.”

 The African conference was the last in a series of 4 regional conferences and discussions now move back to UN headquarters in New York

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

The Left reveals an ugly face at pro-life rally

An Australian Newspaper the Herald Sun reported on October 13th, on the appalling behaviour of pro-abortionists who set out to deliberately confront a pro-life rally in Melbourne last Saturday.
CHANTING socialists and feminists on Saturday stormed up to Parliament House to confront 3000 anti-abortion activists gathered there.

Now, remember what socialists claim: they are kinder and more moral. More sharing and caring.

Remember what feminists claim: they want women treated equally. Want mutual respect.

But here is what I saw.

I saw those Socialist Alliance protesters and feminists for hours shout down, blockade, hit, abuse and destroy the property of citizens, priests included, trying to peacefully express a different point of view - that killing babies in the womb is wrong.

I saw socialists and feminists yanking signs from the hands of women older than themselves and destroying their balloons, as if those women had no right to speak and no right to their own property.

I saw some socialists and feminists push police and shove and hit anti-abortionists. One politician was hit with an egg; another was allegedly kicked.

I saw a socialist wearing a "F... Tony Abbott" T-shirt.

I saw one feminist screaming hysterically in the face of someone trying to speak to her.

Some anti-abortionists possibly retaliated, but the police knew who was causing the trouble, and their lines faced the socialists and feminists, to protect the anti-abortionists behind them.

In this demonstration I saw socialists and feminists betray almost every principle they profess to hold.

I saw them treat women with contempt and fellow citizens with force. I saw them deny others their right to free movement and speech. I saw them counter reason with abuse.

The Left has been long presented by schools, universities and media outlets, especially the ABC, as people who are "progressive" and "compassionate".

The Left I saw on Saturday is instead the natural home of the totalitarian and the bully. And that's without considering that today's socialists and feminists also endorse the killing of healthy unborn infants just weeks before birth.

None of this is new, of course. Most of the worst modern tyrannies, from the French Revolution to the Cambodian genocide, were led by the Left. The greatest attacks on our free speech have come from Labor, a party of so-called idealists.

But as British philosopher Bertrand Russell famously noted: "Much that passes as idealism is disguised hatred or disguised love of power."

We saw that in Melbourne on Saturday. They call themselves progressives. They are instead barbarians, so sure of their goodness they feel licensed to do evil.

Friday, October 11, 2013

HIQA investigation report, on the death of Savita Halappanavar, slams hospital failure to provide 'even the most basic elements of patient care'

Galway University hospital failed to give Savita Halappanavar “even the most basic elements of patient care” according to a new and damning investigation conducted by the Health Information and Quality Authority (HIQA). The investigation identified thirteen “missed opportunities” where
appropriate intervention “may potentially have resulted in a different outcome for her”.

Mrs Halappanavar, who was 17 weeks pregnant, died of sepsis at University Hospital Galway on October 28 last year following a miscarriage.

The HIQA report says that following the rupture of her membranes Mrs Halappanavar should have received four-hourly observations, including checks on her temperature, heart rate, breathing and blood pressure. This did not happen, however, and hospital staff failed to act in a timely way to respond to her deterioration. By the time she was admitted to the critical care unit it was too late.

Among the key findings of the report are:

- The hospital did not follow its own guidelines on early warning alerts for a patient who could be deteriorating.

- It also ignored its guidelines on sepsis and pre-term pre-labour rupture of the membranes.

- Vital information about her condition was not shared by doctors looking after her.

- She was placed in a ward that was unsuitable for someone at risk of clinical deterioration which had not enough staff qualified to treat patients there.

The 257-page report from HIQA is the third report into Mrs Halappanavar’s death, and follows a coroner’s inquest and an inquiry by the HSE. It says the clinical governance arrangements within the hospital failed to recognise that vital hospital policies were not in use and points out that the Galway hospital developed a local Modified Obstetric Early Warning Score chart in 2009 but this was not in use on the ward three years later, in October 2012. It says there was no formal clinical escalation protocol and no emergency response team in place at the hospital and while sepsis guidelines were in place, clinical governance arrangements were “not robust enough” to ensure they were adhered to.

Commenting on the implications of the report consultant obstetrician DR Peter Boylan has described the HIQA report into the standards of maternity care as “an appalling indictment of State failure”.

It is abundantly clear from this new HIQA report and from the earlier reports that the real issue in this tragic case was never really about abortion but the basic deficiencies in patient care and the catalogue of failures in monitoring and recognising the grave risk to Mrs Halappanavar’s life caused by her sepsis infection.

Nevertheless this did not stop a ruthless and virulently pro-abortion media from using this tragic case to further its own agenda

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Abortion is not a compassionate response to fatal disability says SPUC Northern Ireland

SPUC Northern Ireland has responded to the sad case of 'Sarah', a woman who contacted the BBC to say that the law on abortion in Northern Ireland had forced her to travel to England to abort a child diagnosed with anencephaly.

Liam Gibson, SPUC Northern Ireland's development officer, commented:
"Abortion is not a compassionate response to the diagnosis of fatal disability. Babies with fatal disabilities are no less human than other children and share the same right to life as all other human beings. The law in Northern Ireland respects that right, while the British Abortion Act has led to the situation where it is lawful to kill a disabled child up to birth.

Some people may believe that an abortion in case of fatal disability helps women carrying such babies but in fact this is not true. The evidence demonstrates that women who abort their babies for such reasons experience serious psychological suffering. One study in the Netherlands found that, four months after their abortions, 46 per cent of women showed pathological levels of post-traumatic stress disorder.

The tragic nature of this case highlights the desperate need for perinatal hospice care in Northern Ireland. Women with access to perinatal hospice care have a much better prospect of coming to terms with their grief. A perinatal hospice gives parents of babies with a fatal diagnosis the chance to be parents. To hold their child, care for them and share whatever time they have no matter how short. Those experiences help parents cope with their grief in a way that is simply impossible with abortion.

Last year MLAs were given the opportunity to hear about the benefits of perinatal hospice care from Dr Bryon Calhoun, a world-class expert in this field. It is time that the health department looked at ways to provide greater support and care for women and their unborn babies in these difficult and tragic circumstances."
Cliona Johnson, an Irish woman, has recounted movingly her experience of choosing to give birth to an ancephalic child in this YouTubevideo.

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Holy See Permanent Observer status under attack at the United Nations

The Parliamentary Network for Critical Issues (PNCI) reports on the most recent attempt to downgrade Holy See to NGO status at UN. As we approach the end of programmes agreed in the mid nineties some UN organizations and anti life and family NGO’s  have been assessing the factors that have halted their implementation of the culture of death and have identified the  presence of Holy See as a major element in their lack of success.
PNCI reports
If the latest "See Change" campaign of 'Catholics' for Choice (CFC) is successful--which it won't be-- the Holy See will lose its permanent observer status at the United Nations and be reduced to a non-government organization. This effort follows a similar one that was attempted by pro-abortion organizations following the effective pro-life actions of the Holy See at UN meetings in Cairo and Beijing that stopped abortion from being recognized as an international right.

Now, as then, the effort is a testament to the influential role of the Holy See which the United Nations officially recognizes as a non-member state that has received a "standing invitation to participate as an observer in the sessions and the work of the General Assembly and to maintain a permanent observer mission".  
The agenda-driven tactic of the "See Change" campaign seeks to overturn the decision of the United Nations to officially affirm the permanent observer status of the Holy See in U.N. General Assembly Resolution A/58/314 Participation of the Holy See in the work of the United Nations. The resolution passed the Fifty-eighth session of the General Assembly on July 16, 2004, marking the 40th anniversary of the Holy See's presence at the United Nations.

The U.N. resolution details the approved actions for the Holy See and includes:

Acknowledges that the Holy See, in its capacity as an Observer State, shall be accorded the rights and privileges of participation in the sessions and work of the General Assembly and the international conferences convened under the auspices of the Assembly or other organs of the United Nations, as well as in United Nations conferences as set out in the annex to the present resolution;

The current anti-Catholic campaign promotes sending letters to foreign ministers and U.N. ambassadors with the opening line: "I am writing to urge you to correct an injustice at the United Nations that privileges one religious and cultural tradition over every other and that has dire effects on the lives of women and men around the world."

Holy See U.N. watchers know that the Holy See continually seeks human dignity for all, including protecting women and children from the violence of abortion, and advances life-affirming solutions to improve women's lives around the world. Its website explains:
In this forum, the Holy See Mission communicates the centuries' experience of the Catholic Church to humanity, and places this experience at the disposal of the United Nations to assist it in its realization of peace, justice, human dignity and humanitarian cooperation and assistance.

In its activities at the United Nations, the Holy See Mission works to advance freedom of religion and respect for the sanctity of all human life - from conception to natural death - and thus all aspects of authentic human development including, for example, marriage and family, the primary role of parents, adequate employment, solidarity with the poor and suffering, ending violence against women and children, poverty eradication, food, basic healthcare and education.

PNCI recommends visiting the website of the Permanent Observer Mission of the Holy See to the United Nations, New York to read the latest news and official statements given by the Holy See and learn more about its work promoting authentic justice around the world.