Peter Baklinski

‘What the heck does homosexuality have to do with the pro-life movement?’

Peter Baklinski
Peter Baklinski
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27 November, 2012 (LifeSiteNews.com) – People often wonder why many people involved in the pro-life movement are also interested in homosexuality-related issues. They especially wonder if defending traditional marriage really has anything to do with being pro-life.

The answer to this is simple: Being pro-life is much more than saving babies. It’s also about fighting for the flourishing of the human person every step of the way, from conception, through birth, through childhood, through adulthood, till natural death. It’s about promoting a “Culture of Life.”

That’s why many pro-lifers aren’t just concerned about abortion: they also tackle euthanasia, cloning, homosexuality, and other life and family issues, which, after a second glance, are found to be all interconnected. If you’re a big-picture looker, it’s easy to see that these are the hot-button items on a massive international scale, leaving no nation or locality unaffected.

The reason why the pro-life movement puts so much time and energy into ending abortion in particular is because denying someone the “right to life” is the gravest injustice. The right to life is the basis for the enjoyment of all other rights. When this right is taken away from the most vulnerable among us, then no one’s rights are secure. There is no real justice, just the domination of the weaker by the stronger, the survival of the fittest. Abortion is really the deadliest kind of bullying.

At the 1994 National Prayer Breakfast in Washington, Mother Teresa called abortion the “greatest destroyer of peace today”. She said abortion was a “war against the child — a direct killing of the innocent child — murder by the mother herself.” She shrewdly pointed out that “if we accept that a mother can kill even her own child, how can we tell other people not to kill one another?”

Yes, we pro-lifers must fight for unborn children and secure their right to life. But we must also fight for children to be born and raised in circumstances that will allow them to flourish as human persons.

The environment that is the most conducive to the flourishing of human persons — bar none — is the human family composed of one man united to one woman in a lifelong union called marriage. Study after study has shown this again and again.

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War on Marriage and the Family

But there is an unprecedented war on the family today that apparently wants to extinguish this most fundamental social unit. The war has been waged most intensely in the last 100 years or so.

The destroyers of the family began by splitting husbands apart from wives. They did this by introducing contraception into the sexual act under the guise of ‘sexual freedom’. With contraception, spouses took each other’s intimate treasure of fertility and sacrificed it on the altar of sexual freedom so as to increase their sexual availability with ‘no consequences.’

But in disregarding the ‘whole person’ by excluding fertility, contracepting husbands and wives began to relate to one another merely as stimulating occasions for orgasm. Their respect and love for one another suffered since nobody likes to be devalued and nobody likes to be used as a tool for someone else’s pleasure. The contraception movement started gaining traction in the early part of the 20th century and reached its heyday in the late 1960’s. Marriage was weakened and the destructive fallout of the contraceptive movement is ongoing to this day.

Widespread use of contraception led to the need for legalized abortion as a solution to failed contraception. Couples who had closed themselves to the gift of life demanded a quick and easy way out from ‘unwanted’ responsibilities. With children no longer being viewed as the crowning glory of marriage, marriage was weakened further.

Closely following the contraception movement came the no-fault divorce movement in the mid 1950’s. Contracepting couples who had tasted the bad fruit of using each other for selfish enjoyment needed a quick and easy way out from what was supposed to be a lifelong relationship but that had gone horribly wrong. With permanence taken out of marriage, marriage was weakened even further.

Broken, Crushed, and Hurting Children

The above-mentioned ‘social innovations’ have always resulted in the suffering of innocent children. Contraception hurts children in that it closes an adult’s heart and mind to the gift of new life. Abortion hurts children by killing them in the most brutal and horrific ways imaginable. And of course divorce wreaks total havoc on a child’s physical, psychological, and moral formation.

These social innovations bankrupted marriage, practically stripping it of its natural function of nurturing new human life.

Then came the most extreme social innovation. Marriage would now be stripped of its biological “male and female” quality. The logic leading to this push was unstoppable. Once marriage was no longer viewed as a union for the sake of creating and nurturing new human life, then there was no longer any reason to keep that union exclusively between a male and female. By now, the cultural framework of traditional marriage was so ravaged by contraception, divorce, and abortion that it was unable to withstand the carefully planned assault by homosexual activists.

The homosexual activists’ battle cry for “equality” has brought us where we are today, with Canada having changed the definition of marriage in 2005, and with many of the U.S. states having recently followed suit. And they where able to pull this off because of the weakened state of traditional marriage. Homosexual activists have successfully tricked the Western world into believing that their absolutely sterile homosexual activity is of equal merit to society as the fruitful act between a husband and wife that naturally produces children. With the social push to change the definition of marriage came a corresponding mindset that masculinity and femininity, fatherhood and motherhood, are completely irrelevant to a child’s formation.

Now with traditional marriage practically defined out of existence, children will suffer more than ever. They will suffer because the institution where they best thrive has become socially bankrupt. Men and women, abandoning marriage as a ‘meaningless social frill’, will still have children together, but not in the environment that best favors the flourishing of a new human being. Children will suffer further as gay and lesbian couples, walking proudly under the legal banner of newly redefined ‘marriage’, will attempt, and have done so already, to raise and form children.

Research released this year indicates however that the social experiment of homosexual ‘marriage’ will cause nothing but serious harm to children. Children raised by gay and lesbian parents have significantly more social and mental-health problems when compared to children from an intact biological family. The research not only showed that there was a major difference between the children from both groups, but it highlighted that family instability is a ‘characteristic mark’ of same-sex relationships.

The social mistakes we as a society have made, and are making right now, weigh heavily on the shoulders of children. They are the innocent victims of social experimentation who have become morally and even physically crushed and broken. They are the ones who have become pulverized in the name of so-called ‘freedom, equality, and progress’.

Being Pro-Life to the Core

These startling facts illuminate why so many pro-life activists are constantly highlighting research that supports traditional marriage. It’s why they take so seriously homosexual-related issues, calling attention to the rampant attacks made on traditional marriage.

Leaders in the culture war know that education on this issue is the necessary first step to building a massive campaign to protect children from being deliberately denied a mom and dad in a stable marriage. They know that the well-being of children depends on turning the cultural tide to favor true marriage. An unstable, morally disordered environment is no place to teach a child how to live, how to become all that he or she is meant to be, how to learn to be a free and responsible human being.

This is why pro-lifers must fight for traditional marriage, never compromising in the belief that marriage must be entered freely by one man and one woman, that spouses must give of themselves totally holding nothing back, that the relationship must be faithful until death, and that it must be fruitful in raising up new lives. This is simply the best situation for a child’s moral, physical, and mental flourishing.

To be pro-life is to be on guard against anything that threatens this most precious social institution necessary for human flourishing. In fighting for true marriage, we are fighting on behalf of children. We are fighting for them to have a life lived to the fullest. In our fight for them, we are securing the very future of humanity.

Defending authentic marriage has everything to do with being pro-life. It’s to be pro-life, right down to the core. So, let’s roll up the sleeves, get to work, and do what pro-lifers do best: fight on behalf of children.

Peter Baklinski has a Masters in Sacred Theology with a Specialization on Marriage and Family (STM). He is pursuing a PhD from the John Paul II Institute in Australia.

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PBS defends decision to air pro-abortion documentary ‘After Tiller’

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By Dustin Siggins

Under pressure for showing the pro-abortion documentary "After Tiller" on Labor Day, PBS' "POV" affiliate has defended the decision in response to an inquiry from LifeSiteNews.

The producers of the film say their goal with the documentary, which tells the stories of four late-term abortion doctors after the killing of infamous late-term abortionist George Tiller, is to "change public perception of third-trimester abortion providers by building a movement dedicated to supporting their right to work with a special focus on maintaining their safety.” 

POV told LifeSiteNews, "We do believe that 'After Tiller' adds another dimension to an issue that is being debated widely." Asked if POV will show a pro-life documentary, the organization said that it "does not have any other films currently scheduled on this issue. POV received almost 1000 film submissions each year through our annual call for entries and we welcome the opportunity to consider films with a range of points of view."

When asked whether POV was concerned about alienating its viewership -- since PBS received more than $400 million in federal tax dollars in 2012 and half of Americans identify as pro-life -- POV said, "The filmmakers would like the film to add to the discussion around these issues. Abortion is already a legal procedure."

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"This is an issue that people feel passionately about and will have a passionate response to. We are hopeful that the majority of people can see it for what it is, another lens on a very difficult issue." 

In addition to the documentary, POV has written materials for community leaders and teachers to share. A cursory examination of the 29-page document, which is available publicly, appears to include links to outside sources that defend Roe v. Wade, an examination of the constitutional right to privacy, and "a good explanation of the link between abortion law and the right to privacy," among other information.

Likewise, seven clips recommended for student viewing -- grades 11 and beyond -- include scenes where couples choose abortion because the children are disabled. Another shows pro-life advocates outside a doctor's child's school, and a third is described as showing "why [one of the film's doctors] chose to offer abortion services and includes descriptions of what can happen when abortion is illegal or unavailable, including stories of women who injured themselves when they tried to terminate their own pregnancies and children who were abused because they were unwanted."

Another clip "includes footage of protesters, as well as news coverage of a hearing in the Nebraska State Legislature in which abortion opponents make reference to the idea that a fetus feels pain." The clip's description fails to note that it is a scientifically proven fact that unborn children can feel pain.

The documentary is set to air on PBS at 10 p.m. Eastern on Labor Day.

Kirsten Andersen contributed to this article.

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He defended ‘real’ marriage, and then was beheaded for it

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By Pete Baklinski

A Christian man was executed during the night by a high-profile ruler after making an uncompromising defense of real marriage.

The Christian, who was renowned for his holiness, had told the ruler in public that his relationship with his partner was “against the law” of God. The Christian’s words enraged the ruler’s partner who successfully plotted to have him permanently silenced.

John the Baptist was first imprisoned before he was beheaded. The Catholic Church honors him today, August 29, as a martyr and saint.

While John’s death happened a little less than 2,000 years ago, his heroic stance for real marriage is more pertinent today than ever before.

According to the Gospel of Mark, the ruler Herod had ‘married’ his brother’s wife Herodias. When John told Herod with complete frankness, “It is against the law for you to have your brother’s wife,” Herodias became “furious” with him to the point of wanting him killed for his intolerance, bullying, and hate-speech.

Herodias found her opportunity to silence John by having her daughter please Herod during a dance at a party. Herod offered the girl anything she wanted. The daughter turned to her mother for advice, and Herodias said to ask for John’s head on a platter.

Those who fight for real marriage today can learn three important lessons from John’s example.

  1. Those proudly living in ungodly and unnatural relationships — often referred to in today’s sociopolitical sphere as ‘marriage’ — will despise those who tell them what they are doing is wrong. Real marriage defenders must expect opposition to their message from the highest levels.
  2. Despite facing opposition, John was not afraid to defend God’s plan for marriage in the public square, even holding a secular ruler accountable to this plan. John, following the third book of the Hebrew Bible (Leviticus 20:21), held that a man marrying the wife of his brother was an act of “impurity” and therefore abhorrent to God. Real marriage defenders must boldly proclaim today that God is the author of marriage, an institution he created to be a life-long union between one man and one woman from which children arise and in which they are best nurtured. Marriage can be nothing more, nothing less.
  3. John did not compromise on the truth of marriage as revealed by God, even to the point of suffering imprisonment and death for his unpopular position. Real marriage defenders must never compromise on the truth of marriage, even if the government, corporate North America, and the entire secular education system says otherwise. They must learn to recognize the new “Herodias” of today who despises those raising a voice against her lifestyle. They must stand their ground no matter what may come, no matter what the cost.

John the Baptist was not intolerant or a bigot, he simply lived the word of God without compromise, speaking the word of truth when it was needed, knowing that God’s way is always the best way. Were John alive today, he would be at the forefront of the grassroots movement opposing the social and political agenda to remake marriage in the image of man.

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If he were alive today he might speak simple but eloquent words such as, “It is against God’s law for two men or two women to be together as a husband and wife in marriage. Marriage can only be between a man and a woman.” 

He would most likely be hated. He would be ridiculed. He would surely have the human rights tribunals throwing the book at him. But he would be speaking the truth and have God as his ally. 

The time may not be far off when those who defend real marriage, like John, will be presented with the choice of following Caesar or making the ultimate sacrifice. May God grant his faithful the grace to persevere in whatever might come. St. John the Baptist, pray for us!

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The Wunderlich family Mike Donnelly / Home School Legal Defence Association
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German homeschoolers regain custody of children, vow to stay and fight for freedom

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By Thaddeus Baklinski

One year to the day since a team of 20 social workers, police officers, and special agents stormed a homeschooling family’s residence near Darmstadt, Germany, and forcibly removed all four of the family’s children, aged 7 to 14, a state appeals court has returned custody of the children to their parents.

The reason given for the removal was that parents Dirk and Petra Wunderlich continued to homeschool their children in defiance of a German ban on home education.

The children were returned three weeks after being taken, following an international outcry spearheaded by the Home School Legal Defense Association.

However, a lower court imposed the condition on the parents that their children were required to attend state schools in order for them to be released, and took legal custody of the children in order to prevent the family from leaving the country.

In a decision that was still highly critical of the parents and of homeschooling, the appeals court decided that the action of the lower court in putting the children in the custody of the state was “disproportional” and ordered complete custody returned to the parents, according to a statement by the HSLDA.

The Wunderlichs, who began homeschooling again when the court signaled it would rule this way, said they were very pleased with the result, but noted that the court’s harsh words about homeschooling indicated that their battle was far from over.

“We have won custody and we are glad about that,” Dirk said.

“The court said that taking our children away was not proportionate—only because the authorities should apply very high fines and criminal prosecution instead. But this decision upholds the absurd idea that homeschooling is child endangerment and an abuse of parental authority.”

The Wunderlichs are now free to emigrate to another country where homeschooling is legal, if they choose, but they said they intend to remain in Germany and work for educational freedom.

“While we no longer fear that our children will be taken away as long as we are living in Hessen, it can still happen to other people in Germany,” Dirk said. “Now we fear crushing fines up to $75,000 and jail. This should not be tolerated in a civilized country.”

Petra Wunderlich said, "We could not do this without the help of HSLDA,” but cautioned that, “No family can fight the powerful German state—it is too much, too expensive."

"If it were not for HSLDA and their support, I am afraid our children would still be in state custody. We are so grateful and thank all homeschoolers who have helped us by helping HSLDA.”

HSLDA’s Director for Global Outreach, Michael Donnelly, said he welcomed the ruling but was concerned about the court’s troubling language.

“We welcome this ruling that overturns what was an outrageous abuse of judicial power,” he said.

“The lower court decision to take away legal custody of the children essentially imprisoned the Wunderlich family in Germany. But this decision does not go far enough. The court has only grudgingly given back custody and has further signaled to local authorities that they should still go after the Wunderlichs with criminal charges or fines.”

Donnelly pointed out that such behavior in a democratic country is problematic.

“Imprisonment and fines for homeschooling are outside the bounds of what free societies that respect fundamental human rights should tolerate,” he explained.

“Freedom and fundamental human rights norms demand respect for parental decision making in education. Germany’s state and national policies that permit banning home education must be changed.

"Such policies from a leading European democracy not only threaten the rights of tens of thousands of German families but establish a dangerous example that other countries may be tempted to follow,” Donnelly warned.

HSLDA Chairman Michael Farris said that acting on behalf of the Wunderlichs was an important stand for freedom.

“The Wunderlichs are a good and decent family whose basic human rights were violated and are still threatened,” Farris said.

“Their fight is our fight," Farris stressed, "and we will continue to support those who stand against German policy banning homeschooling that violates international legal norms. Free people cannot tolerate such oppression and we will do whatever we can to fight for families like the Wunderlichs both here in the United States and abroad. We must stand up to this kind of persecution where it occurs or we risk seeing own freedom weakened.”

Visit the HSLDA website dedicated to helping the Wunderlich family and other German homeschoolers here.

Contact the German embassy in the U.S. here.

Contact the German embassy in Canada here.

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