All articles from January 2, 2019


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U.S. Sen. Mazie Hirono (D-Hawaii)
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Knights of Columbus respond to Senate Democrats’ anti-Catholic questions to judicial nominee

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By Martin Barillas

January 2, 2019 (LifeSiteNews) — Members of the Knights of Columbus in Washington, D.C., issued an open letter to U.S. Senators Mazie Hirono and Kamala Harris in response to questions posed by the two Democrats to Trump judicial nominee Brian Buescher suggesting his membership in the Catholic charitable organization means he is unable to hear court cases “fairly and impartially.”

According to letter from local councils of the Knights, “We recently read about statements which expressed the fear” that the group holds “many extreme beliefs.” Disavowing extremism, the letter said, “It is our great pleasure to assure you that this fear is not grounded in any truth” and explained that the Knights are dedicated to the principles of “charity, unity, and fraternity.”

In what their critics believe amounts to a religious test for office, Senator Hirono of Hawaii asked Buescher in December whether he would quit the Knights. Hirono said in her questionnaire to the nominee: “The Knights of Columbus has taken a number of extreme positions" and also wrote, "For example, it was reportedly one of the top contributors to California's Proposition 8 campaign to ban same-sex marriage."

Senator Harris, who is also a progressive Democrat, referred to the Knights of Columbus "an all-male society" in her questionnaire. She asked Buescher whether he was aware of the group’s pro-life and pro-marriage positions.

In a response to Sen. Dianne Feinstein of the Judiciary Committee, Buescher wrote, “The Knights of Columbus does not have the authority to take personal political positions on behalf of all of its approximately two million members.” Buescher continued, “If confirmed, I will apply all provisions of the Code of Conduct for United States Judges regarding recusal and disqualification.”

The letter from the Knights of Columbus to Senators Harris, Hirono, and their staffs read:

“Greetings from your local, Capitol Hill-area Knights of Columbus Council, Patrick Cardinal O'Boyle Council 11302! We recently read about statements which expressed the fear that the Knights of Columbus held many extreme beliefs. It is our great pleasure to assure you that this fear is not grounded in any truth. The Knights of Columbus in general, and O'Boyle Council in particular, are dedicated to the three fundamental principles of charity, unity, and fraternity.

“In the past few months, O'Boyle Council has worked with local parishes, including St. Peter's (House-side Catholic church) and St Joseph's (Senate-side Catholic church) to raise funds and give away over $4,000 worth of coats to neighborhood children, collect soda and beer can tabs to donate to the Lt. Joseph P. Kennedy Institute, which helps the developmentally disabled, and collect diapers and other supplies for new mothers in need. Over the course of the past year, we donated an ultrasound machine to a clinic, picked up trash around Nationals Park, and donated supplies to a local school. We do all this as well as social gatherings and spiritual events. We hope this list of activities help to assure you that we are simply a group aiming to do God's work while building friendships.

“We wish to formally invite you all to join us for any social or charitable event. In fact, this February we are doing the Polar Plunge to raise funds for DC Special Olympics.  You and anyone you know are more than welcome to join us either jumping in the cold water or sponsoring our team. Our team's page can be viewed at https://give.specialolympicsdc.org/kofc. Additionally, if any Catholic men on your staff are interested in joining O'Boyle Council for charitable and social events, they can find more information on our website at https://oboyle.dcknights.org/ and Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/KofC11302/. If you have any further questions or concerns, please reach out to us at [email protected] Thank you for this opportunity to write to you. We pray that you have a wonderful Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!”

In response, Republican Sen. Lindsey Graham of South Carolina tweeted on Christmas Eve, “Hopefully, in the eyes of Democrats you are not disqualified to a be a judge because of your religious affiliations and beliefs.” In a follow-up, he wrote: “Will not tolerate disqualifying judicial nominees because of charitable works and personal religious opinions.” The office of Sen. Orrin Hatch, a Utah Republican, tweeted: “Alarming questions from Senate Democrats, showing they are getting more and more comfortable with imposing religious tests on Federal judicial nominees.”

Rev. Eugene F. Rivers III, a civil rights leader and the director of the Seymour Institute for Black Church and Policy Studies, said in a statement that he fears for the status of people of faith in the United States. “There is no place for a religious test like this in our country,” he said. “Our constitution forbids it and elected leaders should know better than to try to impose it."

Ken Blackwell, who served as U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Human Rights Commission, condemned the Democrats’ statements. He said in a statement, “This is the kind of thuggish behavior we expect from third world dictators, not United States Senators."

Within Article VI of the U.S. Constitution is the clause that forbids any federal office holder or employee from being required to adhere to or accept any particular religion or doctrine as a prerequisite to holding a federal office or a federal government job. The so-called No Religion Clause follows a clause requiring all federal and state officers to take an oath to support the Constitution. This is the only explicit reference to religion in the original seven articles of the U.S. Constitution.

The Knights of Columbus has two million members. Founded in 1882, it was formed to offset anti-Catholic activity on the part of groups such as the Ku Klux Klan.

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Boyhood sexual abuse victim of McCarrick interviewed by Vatican as canonical trial ramps up

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By Doug Mainwaring

NEW YORK, January 2, 2019 (LifeSiteNews) – James Grein, who beginning at age 11 was repeatedly sexually abused by former Cardinal Theodore McCarrick, gave his sworn testimony to Catholic Church authorities conducting a canonical investigation initiated by the Vatican into McCarrick’s long history of sexual predation.

Two days after Christmas, Grein, who now lives in Virginia, traveled with his attorney to New York City in response to an invitation by archdiocesan officials who had been deputized to act on behalf of the Holy See.

According to Patrick Noaker, Grein’s attorney, the Vatican’s Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith (CDF) is charging McCarrick with three distinct crimes in regard to his treatment of Grein when he was a boy: sexual contact with a minor; sexual contact with an adult, since the abuse continued for nearly 20 years; and perhaps most chillingly, soliciting sex from a penitent during confession.

“McCarrick would take (James) into another room, and one of the first things they would do is he would hear his confession. Almost every single time,” Noaker told The Washington Post, “he would touch his genitals as part of that. He would have to ‘confess’ both sins of the mind and the body.”

Charges stemming from McCarrick’s abuse of other young male victims – including many former seminarians who were forced to share a bed with the prelate – are likely to play a role in the canonical trial the prelate may soon face.

The “Vatican wants this finalized by the second week of February — the entire case,” Noaker told Catholic News Agency (CNA). That would coincide with the Vatican summit on clerical sexual abuse scheduled for the following week in which presidents from more than 100 national bishops’ conferences will discuss how to protect “minors and vulnerable adults” from abuse.

Pivotal testimony

Grein became a pivotal figure in the mounting case against McCarrick when, after sharing his story of abuse with The New York Times last summer, McCarrick resigned from the College of Cardinals and was ordered to remain confined until his canonical trial.

Then in November, as the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) met in a hotel ballroom, Grein stood outside the hotel and bravely went public with his story, telling a group of several hundred people and media “My time has come,” adding, “It has taken too long for victims to come forward.”

When Grein arrived at the chancery on First Avenue in New York, he was asked to sign an affidavit that had already been prepared by officials based on Grein’s previous statements.  

During an emotionally charged 42-minute verbal testimony punctuated with periods of silence and tears as Grein recounted instances of the sexual assaults he endured as a boy, the room was silent. While two attorneys representing McCarrick were present at the deposition, only Grein and judicial vicar Fr. Richard L. Welch were  permitted to speak.   

Grein said when Welch told him that he had been diligently following his case and he believed his testimony, he cried worse than he ever had in his life.

At the end of the session, when Welch told Grein that he was “sorry,” Grein’s response was profound.

“I said no. This isn’t sorry. This is way beyond sorry,” Grein told The Washington Post.   

“What has transpired today is holy,” he continued. “This is God’s work. No man can say sorry to another one after they’ve been destroyed like I have. It’s just not possible. The only way I can get relief is from God.”

‘I want my church back’

“I am trying to save Jesus' Church from the modernists who believe that the institution is more important than parishioners, Jesus and His holy teaching. The modernists worship idols: money and power,” Grein told LifeSiteNews.  

“I want criminal charges brought against McCarrick, but I would like to really see the criminal charges brought against the institution of the church,” Grein said in a televised interview.  

Grein, who left the Catholic Church after being abused by McCarrick, said, “I want my church back.”

Grein asked LifeSiteNews to publish the following challenge to the entire clergy and prelature of the Catholic Church:

Dear Reverend, Very Reverend, Most Reverend or Your Eminence, or Your Holiness:

I am here today to ask you some important questions. Your attention to these questions will be the deciding factor for my return to Jesus' Holy Catholic Church and my strong faith. If your answers are not clear, then you are fogging my faith and the faith of millions. We are concerned for the future of Jesus' Church.

Questions:

  1. If James Grein was your family member, would you stay silent for the institution or would you help him or come to his rescue?

  2. When was the last time you spoke of Jesus' Church and His teachings in a homily? What did you say?

  3. Are you a member of Jesus' Church or a member of the New World Order?

  4. Do you have a conscience? Please explain your views.

  5. Are you obedient to your bishop, cardinal, the Holy See, or any other human being when they tell you to act contrary to God's law — or are you obedient to Jesus Christ? How do you demonstrate this in your daily routine?

  6. How do you worship Jesus Christ every day?

These are true questions. How will you respond to me?

After his emotionally draining experience, Grein, who is an avid baseball fan, was confident that “Jesus hit a grand slam today.”  

“They know McCarrick is guilty on three counts,” he added.

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Facebook temporarily bans Franklin Graham over 2016 post on transgender bathrooms

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By Martin Barillas

January 2, 2019 (LifeSiteNews) – Facebook apologized for temporarily banning evangelist Franklin Graham because of a 2016 post about a North Carolina bathroom privacy bill.

The Asheville Citizen Times reported on Sunday that Facebook banned Graham for 24 hours in December after judging that he had violated its “hate speech” standards. A statement by a Facebook spokesman claimed that a company staffer had mistakenly dropped Graham from the platform.

Graham is the son of the famed evangelist Billy Graham. On Twitter, Franklin Graham wrote that his post had supposedly violated Facebook’s “community standards on hate speech.” He added, “Facebook is making & changing the rules.”

Graham had written about the now-repealed North Carolina House Bill 2, which required people to use restrooms conforming to their sex rather than alleged transgender status. 


Graham wrote in his original post on Facebook that “a nation embracing sin and bowing at the feet of godless secularism and political correctness is not progress.”

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg was a vocal opponent of House Bill 2.

Speaking on a “Fox & Friends” Sunday segment, Graham said that he had been subjected to a “personal attack.”

“If you disagree with [Facebook’s] position on sexual orientation, then you can be classified as hate speech or that you’re a racist,” he said. The preacher acknowledged that as a private corporation, Facebook can “certainly do what they want,” but said he hopes it will produce a new standard for content “based on God’s word.” He stressed that he accepts Facebook’s apology, something he also wrote on Facebook twice.

He added, “The Bible is truth, and I hope they would look to the Bible and get some instruction from God’s word.”

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LGBT activist calls for protest at pro-family politician’s parents’ home

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By Martin Barillas
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Ontario MPP Sam Oosterhoff

ST. CATHARINES, Ontario, January 2, 2019 (LifeSiteNews) – Police issued a warning to a pro-homosexual activist in St. Catharines, Ontario after he encouraged his followers on Twitter to protest at the home of the parents of pro-life and pro-family provincial politician Sam Oosterhoff. 

Rob Gill, a “married” homosexual man, posted the address and phone number of Oosterhoff’s parents on the social media platform, causing Oosterhoff to fear for his parents’ safety. 

Gill tweeted on December 21, “This Christmas, let’s protest Sam Oosterhoff and his bigot, misogynistic and homophobic personality and upbringing.” He encouraged fellow citizens to “protest at his parents’ home” or “give them a call.”

LifeSiteNews sent a message to Gill on Twitter asking for comment but did not receive a response as of Wednesday.

According to the National Post, Gill has no regrets about the Twitter post. It was the police, not himself, he said, who were excessive by reaching out to him at his home. Gill deleted the post but later told media that he regrets taking it down.

In a previous December tweet, Gill wrote that he was hoping to “bring a big gay pride protest” to Oosterhoff’s office and family events. The threat came after Oosterhoff, an evangelical Christian, had posted a video of a Christmas party thrown by Charles McVety, the president of the Canada Christian College. The video showed Oosterhoff with Premier Doug Ford, both smiling and clapping during a Christmas celebration.

Gill called for a protest at Oosterhoff's parents home on the grounds that the parents were responsible for their son's worldview because they homeschooled him, reported St. Catharine Standard. 

In a statement by the Niagara Regional Police cited by National Post, officers acknowledged the receipt of a complaint on December 28 that a person’s home address had been broadcast on social media. “Officers attempted to speak with the author of the social media posts via telephone but were unsuccessful,” stated police.  

The statement said that an officer went to Gill’s home on December 29 to caution him against sharing personal information on social media “which could be perceived as harassing." 

“With the prevalence of social media,” the statement said, “when possible, our officers inform and educate the public on what could be potentially deemed criminal in nature.” However, no charges have been filed.

Oosterhoff is the youngest person ever elected to Ontario’s provincial legislature. While he professed a devotion to free speech, according to National Post, he stated that he feared for his family’s safety and therefore called the police. “The police followed their own protocol and I am grateful for their dedication to our community.”

While Gill claims that a police officer told him he had done nothing wrong, an email from police to Oosterhoff indicates that Gill was advised to cease communicating with the politician via social media. Any further disclosure of Oosterhoff’s personal information, the email said, could result in further official action.

Elected in 2016, the 21-year-old Oosterhoff has described himself as “100 per cent pro-life.” He has been criticized by gay advocacy groups for his opposition to legislation that gave parenting rights to same-sex couples. He has also decried homosexual behavior as a sin.

Gill is a failed candidate for the St. Catharines city council.

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Professors who likened Jordan Peterson to Hitler suing whistleblower

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By Dorothy Cummings McLean

WATERLOO, Ontario, January 2, 2019 (LifeSiteNews) ― The two Canadian university professors who bullied a teaching assistant to tears because she showed students a clip of a debate with Jordan Peterson have now mentioned her in a third party lawsuit.  

Nathan Rambukkana and Herbert Pimlott, professors at Waterloo’s Wilfrid Laurier University, are being sued by Peterson, the University of Toronto psychology professor and author of the best-selling 12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos, for having defamed him.

The professors maintain, however, that their remarks about Peterson would never have become public had they not been recorded and given to the media by teaching assistant Lindsay Shepherd.

In November 2017, the two men, accompanied by Adria Joel, then the university’s manager of “gendered and sexual violence prevention,” grilled Shepherd about her decision to play part of a government-funded television program featuring a debate with Peterson to students. The debate involved Peterson’s resistance to the enforced use of pronouns in vogue with transgender activists. During the disciplinary interview, which Shepherd secretly taped, the professors likened an objective presentation of the Peterson debate to objectively presenting a speech by Adolf Hitler.

In response to Shepherd’s explanation that she was presenting students with ideas that they would eventually encounter in public life and that Peterson was a “real person,” one of the professors replied:

“He is a real person, but he is a real person who has engaged in targeted behavior … or targetting of trans(sexual) students ... by doxxing them, giving out their personal information so that they will be attacked, harassed, so that death threats will find them. This is something that he has done to his own students, has done to other students. This (showing a clip of him speaking without condemnation) is basically like neutrally playing a speech by Hitler or Milo Yiannopoulos from Gamergate.”

In June 2018, Peterson filed suit against Wilfrid Laurier University, Rambukkana, Pimlott and Joel.

According to the Toronto Sun, “The statement of claim, prepared by lawyer Howard Levitt … says Peterson was falsely labeled as incompetent, sexist, misogynist and racist in a now infamous disciplinary meeting with Wilfrid Laurier University teaching assistant Lindsay Shepherd.”

But the professors are arguing that if their remarks hurt Peterson, the blame must fall upon their former student.

According to the Toronto Star, the men “allege Lindsay Shepherd … had ‘power and control’ over the recording and the distribution of the conversation, and meant for the contents of the meeting to potentially become widely available and discussed. Therefore, they argue, should the court find Peterson suffered damages or injuries, those would be ‘attributable to Shepherd and her publication and dissemination’ of the recording.”

Shepherd, who is suing the university, the two professors and the former “gendered and sexual violence” manager for attacks she has suffered and the loss of a future academic career, is also being represented by Levitt.

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Over 41 million abortions estimated in 2018, making ‘choice’ world’s leading cause of death

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By Calvin Freiburger

January 2, 2019 (LifeSiteNews) – Abortions dwarfed every other cause of death worldwide at more than 41 million in 2018, according to the statistics tracking service Worldometers.

Worldometers tracks and estimates statistics in real time on a wide variety of subjects, based on data from sources such as the United Nations, World Health Organization (WHO), International Monetary Fund (IMF), and more. It boasts recognition and citations from a wide variety of media outlets and academic works, as well as the endorsement of the American Library Association.

On December 31, a number of media outlets including Breitbart reported that as of the end of the year, Worldometers’ statistics page for abortion showed that more than 41 million induced abortions (as distinguished from “spontaneous abortions,” better known as miscarriages) had taken place globally in 2018.

That estimate would represent a substantial decrease from the WHO’s estimate of 56 million worldwide abortions every year from 2010 to 2014, though Abort73’s Michael Spielman warns that the WHO relies on estimates from the pro-abortion Guttmacher Institute, which he argues used questionable methodology to compensate for many countries’ complete lack of actual data.

“[O]f the 56.3 million global abortions Guttmacher estimates annually, no more than 10% can be officially accounted for and only 23% have any basis in empirical evidence,” Spielman writes. “The other 77% are assumed based upon a complex statistical model that estimates” a variety of factors. Most significantly, Guttmacher “assume[s] a constant abortion rate that is unaffected by the legality of abortion,” potentially to sway the findings in favor of the abortion lobby’s claim that pro-life laws are ineffective.

Regardless, Breitbart notes that Worldometers’ estimate makes legal abortion deadlier than “cancer, malaria, HIV/AIDS, smoking, alcohol, and traffic accidents combined.” 2018 saw 8.2 million deaths from cancer, 5 million from smoking, and 1.7 million from HIV/AIDS.

At the national level, abortion statistics showed mixed progress this year. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control (CDC) reported in November that 2015 (the most recent year for which official statistics are available) saw fewer abortions in America than at any other point since Roe v. Wade forced legal abortion on all 50 states. On the other hand, the UK Department of Health reported last month that abortions in the United Kingdom reached a ten-year high in 2017.

There was also a rise in “eugenic abortion” while repeat abortions rose to 74,204 last year.

Taxpayer-funded abortions in the UK “reached a record high of 134,768,” Edward Pentin of the National Catholic Register said. He also observed that “[there] should, roughly speaking, be one million live births in the UK each year but about 200,000 unborn children are killed in the womb so the number is around 800,000,” meaning that roughly a fifth of all pregnancies now end in abortion in the UK.

As of January 2, Worldometers’ abortion page estimates there have already been more than 170,000 abortions globally in 2019.

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Video: Pro-life group skewers abortion lobby avoiding the ‘A-word’

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By Calvin Freiburger

AJAX, Ontario, January 2, 2018 (LifeSiteNews) – The Ontario-based pro-life group Choice42 (Choice For Two) is back with the latest video in its popular “Just Saying” series, starting the new year by taking aim at the prevalence of euphemisms for the word “abortion.”

At the end of December the group teased it would be “starting 2019 with a BANG!” in an end-of-year message to supporters, and followed through on January 1 by releasing its newest video.

Sporting the now-iconic pink wig denoting her satirical portrayal of a pro-abortion feminist, Choice42 founder and director Laura Klassen advises readers that the “a-word” is “nasty” and to be avoided at all costs. Throughout the video, every utterance of the word “abortion” is censored.

“Seriously, there are so many words and phrases you can choose to avoid being offensive,” she says. “Why say [abortion] when you can say empowerment! Words like coercion, killing, regret are not helpful.”

“Stick to more uplifting terms, such as self-care, healthcare, repro rights, or my favorite, choice,” Klassen continues, cycling through a variety of costumes including Supergirl, a grim reaper, a nurse, and one in which she wears a “pussy hat” popularized by left-wing activists in recent years. “Brilliant, really, so simple and yet so void of anything truthful. Love it!”

Calling abortion “what it really is” is “just too much,” she concludes, because “nobody wants to think about that.”

“Like with our other videos, the purpose of ‘A-Word’ is to challenge the abortion status quo and hopefully get people thinking about this human genocide that is going on right here and now behind closed doors,” Klassen told Church Militant on Tuesday.

Though a relatively young organization, Choice42 quickly made an international name for itself with its “Just Saying” videos satirizing popular pro-abortion tropes. Previous entries mocked the notion that the “magical birth canal” automatically confers human rights on a preborn baby, and that men can’t discuss abortion because they can’t get pregnant.

In perhaps an even bigger testament to the group’s impact, however, it’s also had to ward off attempts by both Facebook and Twitter to label their content as “discrimination” and “hate speech.”

In addition to battling pro-abortion ideas with humor, Choice42 connects women to crisis pregnancy resources, and publishes more serious videos on topics such as the firsthand accounts of women who choose life in difficult circumstances.

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WATCH: Man who claims to be ‘female’ explodes at store clerk for calling him ‘sir’

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By Calvin Freiburger

ALBUQUERQUE, New Mexico, January 2, 2019 (LifeSiteNews) – Cell phone footage of a confrontation at a New Mexico GameStop location has gone viral after revealing a customer shouting obscenities and threats at a salesperson for referring to him as “sir” instead of “ma’am.”

The video begins with a customer facing the video game store’s checkout counter with his back to the camera, demanding “my f***ing money back” instead of store credit for a purchase. Presumably going off of his masculine build and voice, a female customer offscreen interjects, “Excuse me, sir, there’s a young man in here, you need to watch your mouth.”

The man turns to her, revealing his equally-masculine face while angrily chiding her that “it’s ma’am! It is ma’am!” She responds by threatening to call the police and asking him to settle down, to which he tells her to “settle down and mind your business.”

The employee then says something unintelligible on camera but containing the word “sir,” to which the customer objects. The employee responds to explain that he was referring to multiple people, apparently including other people in line.

“No, you said sir! Once again it’s ma’am!” the customer objects. “Right beforehand you f***ing said sir!” The employee next says something else to someone containing the word “sir,” but as the camera has panned away from the counter at this point it’s unclear who he was addressing.

“Motherf***er, take it outside, if you wanna call me sir again, I will show you a f***ing sir!” the customer shouts, repeating “motherf***er!” and kicking over a stack of boxes as he walks toward the exit.

The employee apologizes, but instead of leaving the man turns around and demands the store’s corporate number. “Because I’m going to call them and talk about how I’ve been misgendered several times in this store,” he adds.

Next the salesperson and customer trade multiple apologies and demands for the corporate number, which the former agrees to give him while asking him to “calm down and stop cussing.”

“Well I’m gonna ask you for the fifth time to stop calling me a man, because quite clearly I am not,” the male customer adds. He paces and growls in front of the counter, before turning around to head back for the exit.

“You’re just gonna keep bumping your gums and disrespecting trans people in this store. Which I plan on telling the entire LGBTQ community. You’re going to lose money over this,” the man declares before exiting.

None of the individuals seen in the video have been identified, nor has the exact location. It is unknown whether the employee faces disciplinary action of any kind or if his superiors are standing by him.

The left-wing Daily Dot, which claims the story’s online reaction has been “largely transphobic,” reports that GameStop has so far refused to comment on the story, but several employees in the area confirmed they had been forbidden from commenting on the record, and one confirmed the incident took place at a location on Coors Boulevard in Albuquerque.

The conservative Townhall was similarly unsuccessful in getting any on-the-record comments, with answers from five different GameStop locations varying “from not knowing about the incident to hanging up on Townhall and being frustrated with the inquiry.”

“It's interesting that his first outburst is at a woman standing off camera who calls him ‘sir,’ as if a woman, who can clearly see for herself what she is looking at, should have to cater to a man's particular fantasy and properly ‘gender’ him according to his wishes and not according to her own eyeballs,” PJ Media’s Megan Fox observed. “This is the kind of insanity the left wants to foist on biological women in the locker room. Can you imagine encountering him when you're half-dressed and scared? Yikes.”

Biological sex is rooted in an individual’s chromosomes and reflected by hundreds of genetic characteristics. The American Psychiatric Association still classifies gender dysphoria as a mental disorder, as did the World Health Organization until last summer. Gender confusion has been linked to a variety of long-term ills, including higher suicide rates.

While this viral confrontation made for an unpleasant shopping experience for several patrons, gender-confused men demanding to be treated as "women" can and has caused far more serious problems in other settings. There has been growing concern in both the United States and United Kingdom over placing men who claim to be women in female prison populations, for example.

A record number of male inmates in England and Wales claim to be female, a subject that’s garnered controversy in no small part due to cases like that of Stephen Wood, a convicted sex offender who assaulted four female inmates after being temporarily housed in a women’s facility because he “identified” as a woman called “Karen White.” In addition, the UK, Canada, and Scotland have seen cases of male prisoners claiming “transgender” status to secure lighter treatment during their incarceration.

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Leaked Vatican letter sheds light on US bishops delaying vote on abuse reform measures

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By Dorothy Cummings McLean

NEW YORK, January 2, 2019 (LifeSiteNews) – A letter from the Vatican to a U.S. cardinal who heads the country’s bishops’ conference reveals more detail about why the bishops delayed voting on two measures during their General Assembly in November that were aimed at addressing the sexual abuse crisis in the American Church. 

The Nov. 11 letter from Cardinal Marc Ouellet, head of the Vatican’s Congregation for Bishops, to USCCB president Cardinal Daniel DiNardo was leaked to Associated Press (AP). 

Whereas mainstream media is using the document to discredit Cardinal DiNardo, American Catholic media outlets are presenting the document as evidence that the Vatican needed more time to consider American proposals to address disciplinary measures for sexually abusive bishops.  

On January 1, Nicole Winfield of the Associated Press (AP) published a story stating that her company had obtained the letter Cardinal Marc Ouellet, Prefect of the Congregation of Bishops, wrote to Cardinal DiNardo on November 11, asking that the American bishops not vote on proposals to address sexual misconduct by fellow bishops. 

Quoting the letter only in part, AP stated that the letter “undermines” DiNardo’s announcement to the USCCB at the beginning of their November 12 meeting where he suggested that the Holy See was to blame for putting off the vote.

“Ouellet’s letter undermines the version of events provided by the conference president, Cardinal Daniel DiNardo,” AP stated. “It could also provide fodder for questions during a spiritual retreat of U.S. bishops, dedicated to the abuse crisis, that opens Wednesday in Chicago,” it continued. 

“They may want to know why, as Ouellet noted in the letter, the draft proposals only arrived at the Vatican on Nov. 8, four days before the U.S. bishops’ meeting began. While the Vatican is known for its slow pace, even the speediest bureaucracy would have found it difficult to review and sign off on sensitive legal documents in that time.” 

AP said that a November 6 letter (not released) from Ouellet to DiNardo also advised the USCCB not to vote on the issue. AP also said that the November 11 letter suggested the Vatican thought the American cardinal was trying to “pull a fast one” by submitting the documents late.  

“While DiNardo blamed the Vatican, the letter from Ouellet suggests that the Vatican thought DiNardo had tried to pull a fast one by intentionally withholding legally problematic texts until the last minute,” AP wrote. 

DiNardo’s original Nov. 12 statement to his fellow bishops at the fall meeting, recorded on video, was as follows: 

“At the insistence of the Holy See we will not be voting on the two actions items in our documentation regarding the abuse crisis.  That is the standards of accountability for bishops and the special commission for receiving complaints against bishops.”

“The Holy See has asked that we delay voting on these so that our deliberations can inform and be informed by the global meeting of the conference presidents that the Holy Father has called for February 2019,” he continued.

“I’m sorry for the late notice, but in fact this was conveyed to me late yesterday afternoon [November 11].” 

The headline given the AP article was “AP Exclusive: Vatican letter undermines US cardinal on abuse.”  

Other mainstream media outlets, including ABC News and the New York Post have similar headlines, presenting the AP story as a discredit to the cardinal.  

The USCCB-owned Catholic News Service (CNS), however, has represented the story as a further indication that the Vatican wanted more time to evaluate the American proposals. 

“The letter … says that proposals which had been scheduled for a vote by the bishops’ conference needed more time and discussion to ‘properly mature’,” wrote CNS’s Cindy Wooden in a Jan. 2 article. “Ouellet indicated that the Vatican congregation had numerous canonical objections to the proposals.”

EWTN’s Catholic News Agency is also presenting the story as illustrative of Ouellet’s central theme that the Vatican had not had enough time to consider the proposals, and not as a discredit to Di Nardo. 

Speaking to AP, Di Nardo indicated that he had shared the “content and direction” of proposals to deal with episcopal sexual abuse with several Vatican dicasteries in October and, after encountering “no opposition”, drafted a final text. 

“We had not planned, nor had the Holy See made a request, to share the texts prior to the body of bishops having had an opportunity to amend them,” he told AP.

During the November 12 press conference, the president of the USCCB had said that the proposals were finalized on October 30.

Now DiNardo has made another statement concerning the Vatican’s objections to the USCCB’s proposals

“It is now clear there were different expectations on the bishops conference’s part and Rome’s part that may have affected the understanding of these proposals,” he said. 

“From our perspective, they were designed to stop short of where the authority of the Holy See began,” the cardinal continued. 

After reading the AP report, various Catholic pundits took to Twitter to communicate their opinions of DiNardo and the leaked letter. 

“How could the cardinal president of the US bishops believe that the letter of the prefect of the Congregation for the Bishops about the Baltimore pastiche would not surface at some point?” asked Villanova University theology professor Massimo Faggioli

EWTN’s Raymond Arroyo took a more charitable view and tweeted:  “Someone is trying to damage the US Bishops efforts to respond to the sex abuse crisis by leaking this letter.”

“Disunity and PR battles among the hierarchy will not solve this crisis,” he continued. “Action is required, not finger pointing.

In August 2018, after revelations that then-Cardinal Theodore McCarrick had been credibly accused of sexual misconduct, Cardinal DiNardo requested a meeting with Pope Francis to discuss the scandal. In both September and October, DiNardo and vice-president of the USCCB Bishop Gomez met with the pontiff in Vatican City. 

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Bree A. Dail Bree A. Dail

News

Pope suggests Our Lady wasn’t born a ‘saint’, Portuguese bishop downplays her virginity

Bree A. Dail Bree A. Dail
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Jan. 4, 2019 update: The Portuguese website "Observador" which originally carried the quotes from Bishop Oporto has now published clarifications from the bishop here. Rorate Caeli has translated and published the original quotes from the bishop here

VATICAN CITY, January 2, 2019 (LifeSiteNews) – As Catholic faithful continue with Christmas celebrations, controversies have arisen over two statements, one from a bishop and the other from Pope Francis, that may contradict Marian Dogmas of the Catholic Church. 

In a Dec. 23  interview given to Portuguese new media, Bishop Manuel Linda of Oporto, Portugal, stated “we should never refer to the physical virginity of Mary." 

"The Old Testament says many times that Jesus was to be born of a maiden, a daughter of Israel, who was simple, poor, and humble. But this is truly just a reference to the full devotion of this woman to God. The gift of being mother of God was given to Mary because she had an undivided heart. What matters is full giving of herself…" In explicit detail, he further stated. “There certainly are women with a ruptured hymen who are more virgin in the sense of full devotion to God than some with an intact hymen."  

When the report of these statements hit the Portuguese press on Christmas Day, an almost immediate outcry from lay faithful in his diocese forced Bishop Linda to “clarify” his words. 

Evidence that the Dogma of the Perpetual Virginity of Mary has been held since the foundation of the Church. Catholic doctrine holds that Mary was a virgin before, during, and after Christ’s birth. Direct reference to it is found within the Lateran Council of 649 A.D. where it is stated that “Mary conceived ‘without any detriment to her virginity, which remained inviolate even after his [Jesus’] birth.’” To state anything other than this is in direct contradiction to the Catholic Faith.

Just days prior, Pope Francis—during his annual address to the families of Vatican Employees on December 21—suggested that Mary was not born a saint, but worked to “become” one. 

“Our Lady and Saint Joseph are full of joy: they look at the Child Jesus and they are happy because, after a thousand worries, they have accepted this gift of God, with so much faith and so much love,” he said. 

“They are ‘overflowing’ with holiness and therefore with joy. And you will tell me: of course! They are Our Lady and Saint Joseph! Yes, but let us not think it was easy for them: saints are not born, they become thus, and this is true for them too,” he added. 

Controversy has arisen with the pope’s last two sentences. 

The Dogma of the Immaculate Conception of Mary states that the “most Blessed Virgin Mary, from the first moment of her conception, by a singular grace and privilege from Almighty God and in view of the merits of Jesus Christ, was kept free of every stain of original sin.” Therefore, when Pope Pius IX declared, infallibly, the Dogma of the Immaculate Conception, the Church declared that Our Lady was conceived and born without sin.

In other words, Our Lady was, indeed, born a saint, albeit by a singular grace of God. 

Editor's note: Reprinted with permission of the author. 

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Pope Francis: It’s better to be ‘atheist’ than attend daily mass as hypocrite

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By Martin Barillas

ROME, January 2, 2019 (LifeSiteNews) – During his general audience at the Vatican today, Pope Francis condemned Catholics who go to church every day but “go on hating” their fellow men. He said it “is better” that they not go. 

“How many times have we witnessed the scandal of those who go to church and spend all day there or attend every day, and later go on hating others or speaking ill of people. This is a scandal,” the Argentine pontiff said. 

The pope added, “It would be better to not go to church. Live like an atheist. If you go to church, then live like a son, like a brother, like an authentic witness, not a counter-witness.”

Pope Francis has been unstinting in his criticisms of some Catholics, particularly traditional-minded ones, whom he asserts have failed to meet the mark. In 2013, Catholic blogger Laurence English released “The Pope Francis Little Book of Insults,” which continues to document the epithets used by the pontiff to describe those whom he criticizes. These include: “superficial Christian,” “climbers...attached to money,” and "fomenters of coprophagia!" The pope has regularly referred to some traditionalist Catholics as "rigid."

Other derogatory phrases used by the pope include “pepper-faced,” “liquid,” and “weak-hoped” Christians; “museum mummies” and “old maids”; and priests and seminarians who qualify as “vain,” “wheeler-dealers,” “little monsters,” and “smarmy idolaters.”

During his regular Wednesday audience for pilgrims to the Vatican, the pope issued a homily on the Gospel of Matthew which refers to the “hypocrites” who pray so that “they can be seen by people.” This is repeated today, the pope said, by “atheists, without God, to be merely admired.” “Pagans,” the pontiff said, “think they pray by talking, talking, and talking. I think that many Christians believe that praying is to talk to God, if you’ll forgive me, like a parrot. No, praying is done in the heart, from within.”

On the other hand, Pope Francis said that Jesus Christ “crowned with joy” those persons who “were given little consideration in those days, but also today,” including the poor and the merciful. “This is the Gospel revolution. Everyone is capable of love. Peacemakers that until then had been on the margin of history are building the Kingdom of God.” He emphasized, “Where the Gospel is, so too is revolution. The Gospel does not leave us unmoved. It pushes us; it is revolutionary.”

Note: Follow LifeSite's new Catholic twitter account to stay up to date on all Church-related news. Click here: @LSNCatholic

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Sue Thayer

Opinion

Ex Planned Parenthood manager: Christian churches must stop ignoring the abortion holocaust

Sue Thayer
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January 2, 2019 (LifeSiteNews) – Hol·o·caust – noun -  destruction or slaughter on a mass scale. This word, holocaust, is typically associated with the Nazi extermination of somewhere close to six million Jews. Why did the Nazis despise the Jews? Why were they tortured and persecuted? Was it simply because of their religion? Their Jewish heritage? What could be worse than the gas chambers? Or the trains overflowing with humanity? The Nazis referred to the trains as “The Final Solution.” Once a person was forced into a train, death was imminent.

Fast forward a few decades. We are dealing with another holocaust – one of epic proportions. Today’s genocide is as illogical and evil as that of World War II. In fact, our current war on unborn children far surpasses the unbelievable loss inflicted by the Nazis. But this modern-day war on life comes not from a horrible Hitler-like dictator. Instead, the loss of life is inflicted by the most unlikely murderer imaginable – one’s own mother.

World War II was the costliest war in history, in terms of deaths. Estimates are 56.4 million troops and civilians died. A catastrophic event, to be sure. But it pales in comparison to the worldwide abortion holocaust. In China alone, the one-child policy results in a staggering 23 million abortions per year.

In the USA, abortion numbers have been slowly but steadily declining since 1990. Despite this drop, 887,000 babies were aborted in 2016. This is down from 913,000 in 2015. Of course, abortion proponents will argue that this decline means that laws are infringing on their “right” to abort their children. But let’s put this number in perspective. In 2016, abortion wiped out 887,000 babies, the number of people in San Francisco. Can you imagine the media reporting the loss of nearly a million lives? And yet, abortion continues.

With the start of 2019, Americans have allowed 46 years of legalized abortion. How can this be? Why did people not speak out against the killing? There are lessons to be learned from history. Looking back to the Nazi Holocaust, we can see how Christians in one European church reacted to “The Final Solution,” the trains that traveled by. Aboard these trains were hundreds of desperate Jews, suffering and dying. As they passed the church, they would yell and cry out for help. The congregation would hear the click of the train coming down the track, knowing that soon, the urgent pleas for help would come.

This happened every Sunday. While the Christians in the church were aware of the plight of the Jews, they did nothing to help those being led to death. Of course, to go against the Nazis would result in great persecution. One could easily have found oneself on the train with the Jews, heading directly toward the concentration camp. So, what did the Christians do? They sang louder. Literally. They knew the time the train would approach and would purposely sing their hymns as the train neared. Fearing the cries of the Jews that would soon be heard, the congregants would simply sing at the top of their voices. Much easier and safer than to confront the evil going on outside the church.

The Holocaust of abortion is right outside the door. For 46 years, the church has largely been “singing,” that is, doing other things so that they don’t have to hear the cries of the unborn. Can Christians really ignore this tragedy? Can real Christians continue to turn away from the slaughter of innocent lives? How far will the church go to avoid the shedding of innocent blood?

Now is the time. 2019 is the year. Forty-six years is way too long. The church needs to stop singing and quit hiding. We need to get up out of our pews and speak out. Take a stand for life. Sixty-one million lives have been lost.

Sue Thayer is the director of outreach of 40 Days for Life, assisting former abortion facility workers interested in leaving the abortion industry. 

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Linda Harvey

Opinion

Here are the top 10 times liberals endorsed child abuse in 2018, and they’re horrifying

Linda Harvey
By Linda Harvey

January 2, 2019 (LifeSiteNews) – There’s a lengthy, sordid history of the damage children suffer because of “progressive” values and policies. In 2018, the harm went beyond passive side effects.

The left is now brazenly cheering over the corruption, pain, and heartbreak of children. And sometimes, their deaths.

What can be done? We must work within all lawful means possible to stop this evil. Here are some of last year’s worst examples, although this article could go on and on:

10. Colleges are now recommending 4-year-olds engage in sexual activity. Yes, some UC Santa Barbara academics have advanced the idea that preschoolers should engage in “sexual play.” Hopefully law enforcement officials are checking these folks’ laptops for child porn links, and will issue the proper indictments.

9. Sixth graders in Washington state were asked as a class if any of them questioned their gender identity. One girl at Sequim Middle School relates the indoctrination session HERE. Kids were also encouraged to go online privately to research “gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender” groups. This is a segment of the highly controversial F.L.A.S.H. curriculum and just one of many examples where activist teachers use children as sexual agenda guinea pigs, unless parents call a halt.

And secret plans to fast-track gender-confused students through “transition” even without parental knowledge are surfacing all over the country. Here’s the Santa Ana, CA schools’ confidential form to be completed for such a student (drafted by the extreme group Gender Spectrum) with questions like, “Who will be the student’s ‘go-to-adult’ on campus?”

Whatever happened to…parents?

8. “Get ready for Desmond, this trailblazing 11-year-old drag kid…” This is how ABC’s “Good Morning America” host introduced a confused boy dressed as an adult female, who then suggestively pranced down a model runway. Thankfully, many of the comments on this YouTube excerpt expressed sane reactions, like, “This is child abuse!”

And Desmond also recently performed at a Brooklyn, NY adult bar for homosexuals. That incident resulted (thankfully) in some acknowledged disapproval by liberals. Maybe there’s still hope for protecting these kids.

7. The Thanksgiving Macy’s parade tried to normalize teen lesbianism to the millions of children in its television audience, with a female-female kiss introduced enthusiastically by NBC announcers and cheered by parade bystanders. What God calls an “abomination” was applauded as two female performers, portraying teens, enacted a scene from the Broadway play “The Prom,” which laments the objections of school officials over a girl’s female prom date.

6. More teens can’t receive counseling to overcome homosexual feelings, even if caused by sexual abuse. Change therapy bans were enacted in the states of Washington, Hawaii, Delaware, Maryland, and New Hampshire in 2018, along with numerous cities.

Yet this counseling is highly effective for many people. Christians know from Scripture (1 Cor. 6: 9-11) and personal testimonies that God will help people leave the sins of homosexuality and gender rebellion behind.

Last summer, a radical California bill, AB 2943, was thankfully dropped but is likely to be reintroduced in 2019. It aimed to broaden the ban on therapy to adults using a consumer fraud platform and would penalize any person or media communicating that change is possible, if fees are exchanged. In California, what would a victim of molestation do to address unchosen, sinful feelings?

5. A liberal federal judge in Chicago dismissed a suit against doctors who performed female genital mutilation on little girls. District Judge Bernard Friedman said, “Congress overstepped its bounds” in outlawing the practice.

FGM is the barbaric practice of cutting a little girl’s genitals, usually around age nine or ten, and is common among Muslims and tribal groups in Africa, India, Indonesia, and elsewhere. Although illegal in many states, it’s quietly done anyway by immigrant groups in the U.S. and an estimated 500,000 girls are at risk.

So, let’s understand this—it’s a “cultural practice” when nine-year old girls’ genitals are mutilated without their consent. But it’s “consumer fraud” (under the California proposal) if teens or adults engage voluntarily in talk therapy about homosexual attractions or gender confusion following sexual molestation.

This is how liberals think. Or fail to do so.           

4. More clinics opened in children’s hospitals to facilitate body mutilation of confused minors. The quackery of childhood gender “transition” treatment continues to gallop through mainstream medicine without valid research to support its benefits, while ample evidence of its harm piles up.

3. There’s a dramatic increase in the number of teens who claim a “gay, lesbian, bisexual” or “questioning” identity. According to the Centers for Disease Control, nearly 15% of American teens in a massive survey now embrace sinful, immoral behavior—and the CDC joins extremist groups in believing “support” is the best response to these kids, who report far higher risk-taking behaviors and adverse childhood experiences than their heterosexual-identifying peers. Coincidence, or cause?

2. A movement called “Shout Your Abortion” is gaining popularity, with  Oprah as one of its champions. With 60 million unborn human beings as victims, too many deluded women fail to see the hypocrisy of the #MeToo outcry over their own violated human rights while embracing #ChildDestruction.

1. Satan’s army is coming out of the closet as witches openly cast spells against conservatives, Christians, and pro-lifers. At one Ohio abortion clinic, apostate ministers held a “sacred blessing” ceremony inside the facility on November 9. Pro-life demonstrators gathered outside, despite sorcerers openly hexing them. Later, a bizarre YouTube video surfaced of what happened inside at that “blessing.” A post-abortive mom sang a song she believed came from the spirit of the baby she chose to sacrifice.

One cannot overstate the moral spiritual depravity reflected in this celebration of a child’s death.

There is good news. Ohio passed the “Heartbeat Bill,” outlawing an abortion if a beating heart is detected (even though Governor Kasich vetoed it). Kentucky just introduced similar legislation and there are “heartbeat” bills in several other states as well as Congress.

So, Americans do still have a heart for children. In 2019, let’s start to show it again.

Linda Harvey is president of Mission America.

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Abortion activist Amelia Bonow on Kids Meet. Kids Meet / Facebook video screen grab
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WATCH: Abortion activist tells kids: Abortion is ‘part of God’s plan,’ like visiting dentist

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By Jonathon Van Maren
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Abortion activist Amelia Bonow. Kids Meet / Facebook video screen grab
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Abortion activist Amelia Bonow shows off "abortion" tattoo on inside of her bottom lip on Kids Meet. Kids Meet / Facebook video screen grab

January 2, 2019 (LifeSiteNews) – By any definition, the video featuring a young woman chatting with children has now gone viral, racking up 822,00 hits by January 2. It is part of a series called “Kids Meet,” and prior episodes have included gimmicky setups like “Kids Meet A Bounty Hunter” as well as your typical progressive indoctrination sessions, such as “Kids Meet A Gender-Non-Conforming Person.” Each of those videos earned around 40,000 hits. 

Their latest release, however, is different. Featuring the founder of “Shout Your Abortion” Amelia Bonow, it is titled “Kids Meet Someone Who’s Had an Abortion” and has Bonow explaining to children why aborting children is not only okay, but could actually be “all part of God’s plan.” Bonow, who has an extraordinarily hard-looking face, asks one young girl what she’s heard about abortion. “I don’t exactly know what happens, but you go and get rid of the baby,” the girl replied uncomfortably. 

Bonow sets the record straight for them. “You go to the doctor, and they put this little straw inside of your cervix, and then inside of your uterus, and then they just suck the pregnancy out,” she replies. “And it was like a cr*ppy dentist appointment or something. It was just like, ‘This is a body thing that’s kind of uncomfortable,’ but then it was over, and I felt really just grateful that I wasn’t pregnant anymore.”

Bonow is the sort of activist who has never met an abortion she didn’t wholeheartedly support. Some of the older kids asked her if she had been reckless, and why she and her partner hadn’t used a condom. Whatever, was Bonow’s response. We did what we wanted to do, and then got rid of the baby afterwards, easy peasy. What’s the big deal? Even when the kids—and we’re talking about kids here—seemed uncomfortable with it, she assured them that there might be situations you just go with, in the moment, that might lead to needing an abortion later. 

One African American boy couldn’t quite get over her cavalier attitude. Although he thought abortion was moral in some circumstances, he felt that “if, like, you are being reckless” then perhaps abortion was wrong.

“Do we want people to just have all those babies?” Bonow asks, not mentioning that it is the babies that would be “sucked” out of the uterus.

“No,” the boy replied.

“So what do we do with them?” she questions.

“Put them up for adoption,” he stated. Bonow disagreed, stating that this scenario would force her to “create life” and that it would mean she would have a child somewhere in the world. She also indicated that she doesn’t believe it is a life until the baby is actually born, although she referred to abortion throughout her brainwashing session as a solution to her unwanted baby. “I think it’s all part of God’s plan,” she asserted. 

Bonow, of course, wasn’t forced to create life. She and her partner did that voluntarily. In fact, she reveals that they didn’t take any measures to prevent life from being created in the first place. It turns out that when you use your reproductive organs, reproduction can at times occur. That, unfortunately, is not the sort of thing that makes it into progressive sex education curriculums.

Bonow then turned her attention to the two young girls, one of whom identified as Catholic. The Catholic Church, the little girl noted, was opposed to abortion because it was “like, killing the baby.” Bonow, an adult, asked them pointedly what they thought. Shifting in obvious and understandable nervousness, one girl said uncertainly, “I think it’s up to you.” The other girl nodded: “Same.” 

“I feel supported by that,” Bonow said approvingly, smiling creepily. 

The entire video is a trainwreck of misinformation and abortion propaganda. Bonow makes fun of the fact that many people accurately highlight the scientific reality that life begins at conception, because she finds that fact very inconvenient to her ideology. She attempts to get a few kids chuckling about this, as well, hopeful that they have not, at this stage in their life, been exposed to embryology or a sonogram or ultrasound of a pre-born baby. Even then, one of the kids accidentally refers to the life in the womb as a “baby” at one point while explaining why he agrees with her. The truth has a way of getting out.

Bonow does helpfully explain to a couple of kids that she doesn’t call pro-lifers “pro-life,” but prefers to refer to them as “anti-choice.” After all, Bonow says unsubtly, “pro-life” is just a propaganda term because pro-lifers don’t want to take care of the poor, or help people who have given birth to their babies. Bonow has either never heard of crisis pregnancy centers, or is lying, and very likely both. “You’re not pro-life, I’m pro-life,” she announced defensively, after explaining why she had to abort her baby just because she didn’t want one.

At the end of the video, one tattooed teenage girl—who is apparently very supportive of abortion—asked Bonow if she had any tattoos. Bonow responded by peeling back her lower lip to reveal the word “abortion” tattooed inside. Both of them found this to be hilarious. 

This video is a perfect example of our society’s schizophrenic approach to science—and almost everything else. Science is important, except when it comes to life in the womb, where it becomes inconvenient for those wishing to shout their abortions at little kids without judgment for killing littler kids. Watching the video, it is hard to see Bonow as anything but a bully when she is talking to the smallest girls, because obviously they are only allowed to voice one opinion or they’ll promptly find themselves arguing with an adult abortion activist who spends her life defending her irresponsibility and subsequent feticide in public.

Interestingly, pro-life activists could tell Bonow what children really think when they encounter the idea of abortion. Most of them are instantly sad, and many of them ask a question that Bonow might have a hard time answering: “Who broke the baby?”

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Sam Casey and wife Jill
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Pro-life lawyer in coma after bicycle accident, prayers requested

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By Claire Chretien

MATTHEWS, North Carolina, January 2, 2019 (LifeSiteNews) – Prominent pro-life lawyer and friend of LifeSiteNews Samuel B. Casey is in a coma after being hit by a car while bicycling on December 22.

Casey is Managing Director and General Counsel for the Jubilee Campaign’s Law of Life Project. He has extensive experience in legal advocacy defending pre-born children before various state and federal courts and legislative bodies, including the United States Congress and United States Supreme Court. He is also involved with a number of other charitable causes, such as helping the homeless.

“On the afternoon of December 22, 2018, my father Sam Casey was riding his bicycle and was struck by a car from behind,” one of his children wrote of the accident. “He was knocked unconscious and the first responders airlifted him to Intensive Care Trauma Unit at CMC Main, in Charlotte. He is in critical condition in a coma, and is relying on a ventilator and feeding tube.”

Since then, doctors removed the ventilator and performed a tracheotomy.

“Along with that they also put in PEG tube that will now allow him to get direct nutrition to his stomach,” his wife Jill wrote in a CaringBridge update on December 31. “He looked at me for several minutes today before surgery which was very encouraging. He was in the OR for the about 90 minutes while they completed the procedure, thank the LORD it was successful.”

The scope of Sam Casey’s pro-life work is so broad that it would be impossible to list all of the impacts he’s made on court cases, public policy, and changing the culture. But I know well the influence he’s been in my life, especially when I was new to the pro-life movement.

At the dawn of my involvement in pro-life advocacy, I met with Sam Casey to talk about abortion and his experience fighting it. He explained various pro-life initiatives and gave me the “lay of the land” of pro-life organizations. We talked for a long time and bonded over similar life experiences.

A year or so later – maybe it was less or more time than that, I can’t remember – Sam Casey spoke to my college pro-life group about contraception, eugenics, abortion, and related bioethics topics when we were in Washington, D.C. for the March for Life. He had dinner with the students. It was an honor to have him join us.

Updates about Casey’s condition will be posted here. To help his family with medical costs, click here.

Please pray for the full and speedy recovery of this incredible pro-life warrior.

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