Denise J. Hunnell, MD

The Obama administration’s pursuit of an androgynous society

Denise J. Hunnell, MD
By Denise Hunnell MD

October 22, 2012 (HLIAmerica.org) - The Obama administration and the Democratic Party seem to abhor the fecundity of American women. They tout hormonal contraception, abortion, and sterilization as the trifecta of optimal women’s health. They are so zealous in their pursuit of an androgynous society (deliberate or not) that they are willing to trample on religious liberty to get it as they have unquestionably proven with the HHS mandate.

This requirement that all employers provide insurance coverage for contraception, abortifacients, and sterilization or face fines of $100 per day per employee provides no conscience exemption for either individual citizens or religious institutions whose religious principles are violated by complying with this mandate.

This quest to abolish distinctly feminine physiology flies in the face of reality. God did not create genderless human beings. Maleness and femaleness are not just minor incidental aspects of our identity.

Men and women are created by God to be equal in dignity but unique in our complementary natures. In Mark’s Gospel we hear Jesus say:

But from the beginning of creation, God made them male and female.
For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother
and be joined to his wife,
and the two shall become one flesh.
So they are no longer two but one flesh.
Therefore what God has joined together,
no human being must separate.

Therefore, this push to erase the differences between men and women by quashing a woman’s fertility is demeaning to the dignity of women. Womanhood is not a malformation. Fertility is not a disorder. Pregnancy is not a disease.

Unfortunately, President Obama and his entire administration view contraception and abortion as the panacea for maximizing women’s health and wellbeing. One of the first acts of President Obama after his inauguration was to overturn the Mexico City Policy that banned United States foreign aid from being used to promote abortion. In doing so, President Obama aligned his policies with those advocated by the radically pro-abortion International Planned Parenthood Federation, and Marie Stopes International. They see worldwide promotion of abortion and contraception as essential for the common good.

This ideology ignores the experiences of Chile, Ireland, and Poland that clearly show the maternal mortality rate and women’s health is more closely related to the education of women and the availability of clean and competent health care facilities than it is to the availability of abortion or contraception. This ideology also denies the real health risks inherent to these population control efforts.

Using contraception and abortion to lower maternal mortality rates is akin to using starvation to cure obesity. The “cure” is more dangerous than the disease. The World Health Organization lists hormonal contraceptives as Group 1 carcinogens, the same classification as cigarettes and asbestos. The Center for Disease Control acknowledges on its website that oral contraceptives increase the risks for developing breast, cervical and liver cancers.

The younger a woman is when she begins using contraceptives, the greater her increased risk for breast cancer. Some may counter this observation with the fact that using oral contraceptives decreases the risk of ovarian cancer. While this is true, the baseline risk for ovarian cancer is much lower than that of breast cancer. The lowered risk of ovarian cancer in no way balances the increased risk of breast cancer. To suggest that it does would be like saying increasing your risk of having a fatal car accident is balanced by decreasing your risk of being hit by a train.

In addition to the increased cancer risk, contraceptives can double the rate of HIV transmission and increase the risk of blood clots, strokes, and hypertension. The increased risk of high blood pressure is most pronounced in smokers and in adolescent girls. Yet all of these risks are ignored as the Obama administration strives to put contraception into the hands of every American woman. Under the President’s health care plan, girls as young as 12 can receive these potent drugs at no cost and without parental knowledge or consent.

If an adult woman wants to use contraception she is certainly free to do so. However, to expect others to pay for her wholly elective lifestyle choice, especially when it violates their religious principles, is clearly unreasonable. No professional medical association claims that women are healthier when they use contraceptives. Rather, the medical establishment acknowledges that the risks of contraceptives are acceptable for women who freely choose to be sexually active while wanting to avoid pregnancy. In other words, contraception is not essential to women’s health.

In spite of this, the Democrats are claiming that the Catholic Church and others who oppose the HHS mandate are waging a “war on women.” Yet it is the Democrats who insist that women must endure all of the risks of contraception in order to fully participate in American society.

For example, President Obama’s campaign ad entitled “Dreams of our Daughters” repeats the canard that women cannot succeed professionally unless they are provided contraceptives at no cost. Such thinking implies that women have no choice but to be sexually active and that women bear the entire responsibility for the consequences of sexual activity. It effectively denies that men have any requirement for responsible sexual behavior.

As faithful Catholics and as Americans, we cannot allow this ideology to shape our country’s laws and policies.

We must demand respect for religious liberty.

We must insist that the sovereignty of the family be preserved and refuse to marginalize parents in the health care decisions of their children.

And most importantly, we must reject all candidates who view feminine biology as an obstacle to success, motherhood as an inferior vocation, and pregnancy as a disease that must be prevented with contraception or “cured” with abortion.

Reprinted with permission from the Truth and Charity Forum


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Although it is widely believed that people with Down syndrome are doomed to a life of suffering, in one large survey 99% of respondents with Down syndrome described themselves as "happy." Shutterstock
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‘Sick and twisted’: Down’s advocates, pro-life leaders slam Richard Dawkins’ abortion remarks

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By Dustin Siggins

Advocates on behalf of individuals with Down syndrome, as well as pro-life leaders, are slamming famed atheist Richard Dawkin’s statements made on Twitter earlier today that parents have a moral responsibility to abort babies diagnosed in utero with Down’s.

During a shocking Twitter rant, Dawkins responded to questioners saying that it was "civilised" to abort Down Syndrome babies, and that it would be "immoral" to choose not to abort babies diagnosed with the condition.

He said that his goal is to "reduce suffering wherever you can," indicating that unborn children cannot suffer, and that unborn children don't "have human feelings."

In addition to being scientifically challenged - unborn children can feel both pain and emotions - Dawkins' comments drew criticism for his callousness towards children with disabilities.  

"A true civilization – a civilization of love – does not engage in such cold and ultimately suicidal calculus"

“It's sick and twisted for anyone to advocate for the killing of children with disabilities,” Live Action President Lila Rose told LifeSiteNews. “Dawkins's ignorant comments serve only to further stigmatize people with Down syndrome.

“While many people with Down syndrome, their families, and advocacy groups are fighting discrimination on a daily basis, Dawkins calls for their murder before they are even born,” she said. “Those with Down syndrome are human beings, with innate human dignity, and they, along with the whole human family, deserve our respect and protection.”

Carol Boys, chief executive of the Down's Syndrome Association, told MailOnline that, contrary to Dawkins’ assertion, “People with Down’s syndrome can and do live full and rewarding lives, they also make a valuable contribution to our society.”

A spokesperson for the UK disabilities charity Scope lamented that during the “difficult and confusing time” when parents find out they are expecting a child with disabilities, they often experience “negative attitudes.”

“What parents really need at this time is sensitive and thorough advice and information,” the spokesperson said.

Charlotte Lozier Institute president Chuck Donovan agreed with Rose’s assessment. "Advocates of abortion for those 'weaker' than others, or of less physical or intellectual dexterity, should remember that each of us is 'lesser' in some or most respects," he said.

According to Donovan, "we deliver a death sentence on all of humanity by such cruel logic."

"A true civilization – a civilization of love – does not engage in such cold and ultimately suicidal calculus" he said.

One family who has a child with Down syndrome said Dawkins was far from the mark when he suggested that aborting babies with Down syndrome is a good way to eliminate suffering.

Jan Lucas, whose son Kevin has Down syndrome, said that far from suffering, Kevin has brought enormous joy to the family, and "is so loving. He just has a million hugs."

She described how Kevin was asked to be an honorary deacon at the hurch they attend in New Jersey, “because he is so encouraging to everyone. At church, he asks people how their families are, says he'll pray for them, and follows up to let them know that he has been praying for them."

It's not just strangers for whom Kevin prays. "My husband and I were separated for a time, and Kevin kept asking people to pray for his dad," said Jan. "They didn't believe that Kevin's prayers would be answered. Kevin didn't lose hope, and asking people, and our marriage now is better than ever before. We attribute it to Kevin's prayers, and how he drew on the prayers of everyone."

"I don't know what we'd do without him," said Jan.

Speaking with LifeSiteNews, Kevin said that his favorite things to do are "spending time with my family, and keeping God in prayer." He said that he "always knows God," which helps him to "always keep praying for my friends."

"I love my church," said Kevin.

Although it is widely believed that people with Down syndrome are doomed to a life of suffering, in one large survey 99% of respondents with Down syndrome described themselves as "happy." At the same time, 99% percent of parents said they loved their child with Down syndrome, and 97 percent said they were proud of them.

Only 4 percent of parents who responded said they regretted having their child.

Despite this, it is estimated that in many Western countries the abortion rate of children diagnosed in utero with Down syndrome is 90%, or even higher. The development of new and more accurate tests for the condition has raised concerns among Down syndrome advocates that that number could rise even higher. 


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Asked about Iraq on his return flight from South Korea, Francis replied that 'it is legitimate to halt the unjust aggressor.' Shutterstock
Steve Weatherbe

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Pope Francis: steps must be taken to halt ‘unjust aggressor’ in Iraq

Steve Weatherbe
By

Pope Francis and his emissary to Iraq’s persecuted non-Muslim minorities, Cardinal Fernando Filoni, have both called on the United Nations to act in concert to protect Iraqis Christian and Yazidi minorities from the radical Islamic forces of ISIS.

Asked about Iraq on his return flight from South Korea, Francis replied that “it is legitimate to halt the unjust aggressor.”

He added, however, that “halt” does not mean to “bomb” and lamented “how many times with the excuse of halting the unjust aggressor…have powerful nations taken possession of peoples and waged a war of conquest!”

He also cautioned that no single nation could determine the right measures. Any intervention must be multilateral and preferably by the United Nations, he said.

Meanwhile, Cardinal Foloni, who is visiting Iraq on behalf of Pope Francis, issued a joint statement this week with Chaldean Catholic Patriarch Louis Raphael I Sako and the Iraqi bishops that urged the international community to “liberate the villages and other places that have been occupied as soon as possible and with a permanent result.”

The statement also urged efforts to “assure that there is international protection for these villages and so to encourage these families to go back to their homes and to continue to live a normal life in security and peace.”

Archbishop Giorgio Lingua, the Vatican nuncio to Iraq, was also asked by Vatican Radio earlier this month about the U.S. airstrikes in Iraq.

“This is something that had to be done, otherwise [the Islamic State] could not be stopped,” the archbishop said. 

Although Pope Francis’ own remarks about an intervention in the war-torn country were carefully guarded, Catholic commentator Robert Spencer, author of such bestselling exposes of Islam as “The Truth About Muhammad: Founder of the World's Most Intolerant Religion,” told LifeSiteNews he believes the pope was clearly calling for an “armed intervention, though a very limited one.”  

“Only a fool would think there is another way to stop an ‘unjust aggressor,’” he said.

Spencer expressed concerns that both Francis and Pope John Paul II before him have both referred to Islam a “religion of peace,” which Spencer says is “completely false.” However, he suggested that Francis’ remarks calling for action in Iraq are a sign of a more realistic attitude towards Islam.   

On this, Spencer would likely have the support of Amel Nona, the Chaldean Catholic archbishop of Mosul, who issued a letter last week warning the West in stark terms about the encroaching threat of Islam.

“Our sufferings today are the prelude of those you, Europeans and Western Christians, will also suffer,” Nona warned. “Your liberal and democratic principles are worth nothing here.

“You must consider again our reality in the Middle East, because you are welcoming in your countries an ever growing number of Muslims. Also you are in danger. You must take strong and courageous decisions, even at the cost of contradicting your principles,” he said

“You think all men are equal, but that is not true: Islam does not say that all men are equal. Your values are not their values. If you do not understand this soon enough, you will become the victims of the enemy you have welcomed in your home.”


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'Apparently I'm a horrid monster for recommending WHAT ACTUALLY HAPPENS to the great majority of Down Syndrome fetuses,' said Dawkins. 'They are aborted.' Shutterstock
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Richard Dawkins: it’s ‘immoral’ NOT to abort babies with Down syndrome

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By Dustin Siggins

In a bizarre rant on Twitter earlier today, atheist Richard Dawkins wrote that choosing not to abort a child with Down Syndrome would be "immoral."

The conversation started when Dawkins tweeted that "Ireland is a civilised country except in this 1 area." The area was abortion, which until last year was illegal in all cases.

A Twitter user then asked Dawkins if "994 human beings with Down's Syndrome [having been] deliberately killed before birth in England and Wales in 2012" was "civilised."

Dawkins replied "yes, it is very civilised. These are fetuses, diagnosed before they have human feelings."

Later, Dawkins said that "the question is not ‘is it 'human'?’ but ‘can it SUFFER?’"

In perhaps the most shocking moment, one Twitter user wrote that he or she "honestly [doesn't] know what I would do if I were pregnant with a kid with Down Syndrome. Real ethical dilemma."

Dawkins advised the writer to "abort it and try again. It would be immoral to bring it into the world if you have the choice."

According to Dawkins, the issue of who should be born comes down to a calculation based upon possible suffering. "Yes. Suffering should be avoided. [The abortion] cause[s] no suffering. Reduce suffering wherever you can."

Later, however, he said that people on the autism spectrum "have a great deal to contribute, Maybe even an enhanced ability in some respects. [Down Syndrome] not enhanced."

When Dawkins received some blowback from Twitter followers, he replied: "Apparently I'm a horrid monster for recommending WHAT ACTUALLY HAPPENS to the great majority of Down Syndrome fetuses. They are aborted."

It is estimated that in many Western countries the abortion rate of children diagnosed in utero with Down syndrome is 90%, or even higher. The development of new and more accurate tests for the condition has raised concerns among Down syndrome advocates that that number could rise even higher. 

Although it is widely believed that people with Down syndrome are doomed to a life of suffering, in one large survey 99% of respondents with Down syndrome said they were "happy." At the same time, 99% percent of parents said they loved their child with Down syndrome, and 97 percent said they were proud of them.

Only 4 percent of parents who responded said they regretted having their child. 

A number of Dawkins' statements in the Twitter thread about fetal development are at odds with scientific realities. For example, it is well-established that 20 weeks into a pregnancy, unborn children can feel pain. Likewise, unborn children have emotional reactions to external stimuli -- such as a mother's stress levels -- months before being born. 

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