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News

Texas hospital starves quadriplegic COVID-19 patient to death against wife’s protests

'At this point,' the doctor said, 'we are going to do what we feel is best for him along with the state, and this is what we decided.'
Mon Jun 29, 2020 - 8:30 pm EST
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warut pothikit / Shutterstock.com
Texas Right to Life
By Texas Right to Life

June 29, 2020 (Texas Right to Life) — Michael Hickson, a 46-year-old COVID-19 patient, was starved and left without adequate treatment for his illnesses at St. David’s South Austin Medical Center. His wife, Melissa, says the hospital refused to treat his illnesses because of his disability.

Michael Hickson became quadriplegic due to receiving CPR after he went into sudden cardiac arrest while driving Melissa to work in May 2017. Melissa and their five children stayed by Michael’s side throughout his recovery. He landed back in the hospital in 2020 after contracting COVID-19 and pneumonia from a staff member at his nursing home. 

Michael was conscious and alert but could not communicate verbally. He responded to jokes, shook his head, and puckered his lips on a FaceTime call when Melissa requested a kiss. Melissa asked if she could pray with her husband and their children, to which he nodded “yes.” But the doctor soon told Melissa her husband would be placed in hospice against her will. In a recorded conversation, the St. David’s doctor told Melissa her husband would not receive treatment because of his disability, despite her wishes. 

St. David’s doctor: “So as of right now, his quality of life — he doesn’t have much of one.”

Melissa: “What do you mean? Because he’s paralyzed with a brain injury he doesn’t have quality of life?” 

St. David’s doctor: “Correct.”

While Michael’s wife and another family member were litigating in court who would be Michael’s permanent guardian, a judge named an Austin-area organization called Family Eldercare as temporary guardian over Michael. Family Eldercare granted the doctor’s orders to not treat Michael and instead place him in hospice. Alarmingly, the doctor reiterated the scary reality that she had zero say in whether her husband lived or died. The doctor told Melissa, “but at this point, we are going to do what we feel is best for him along with the state and this is what we decided... this is the decision between the medical community and the state.” 

Michael was left without food or treatment for six days despite Melissa’s will to save her husband. He passed away from the untreated illnesses on June 11, 2020.

Now, Melissa and her children grieve their beloved husband and dad. Melissa stated, “I’m struggling to understand how and why this could ever happen. I lost my best friend, my better half, the other half of my heart.” She continued: 

I was stripped of my rights as a wife, and left helplessly watching my husband be executed. I now have no husband, a widow at 47. My children left with no father to celebrate Father’s Day. All taken away from us. I have no other words to express how I feel today except hurt, angry, and frustrated.

Published with permission from Texas Right to Life.


  coronavirus, disability, euthanasia, hospice, hospitals, modern medicine, texas

News

Pope Francis exhorts German Catholics to continue on ‘Synodal Path’

The bishops' pathway defends the use of contraception, the practice of masturbation, and an active homosexual lifestyle.
Mon Jun 29, 2020 - 8:19 pm EST
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Bishop Georg Bätzing of Limburg, Germany. Bistum Limburg / YouTube
Martin Bürger Follow Martin
By Martin Bürger

VATICAN CITY, June 29, 2020 (LifeSiteNews) – Pope Francis encouraged Bishop Georg Bätzing, the president of the German Bishops’ Conference, to continue to pursue what is called the Synodal Path in Germany.

“I feel strengthened by the intensive exchange with the Holy Father to continue on the path we have taken,” the bishop of Limburg said after his private audience last Saturday.

During the process, which was officially launched late last year, preparatory documents have already defended the use of contraception, the practice of masturbation, and an active homosexual lifestyle. Additionally, neither the question of the ordination of women nor that of making celibacy optional for priests was taken off the table.

“The Pope appreciates this project, which he connects closely with the concept of ‘synodality’ that he coined,” Bätzing said. “It was a matter of concern to me to make it clear that the Church in Germany is taking this path and always knows that it is bound to the universal Church.”

After Batzing’s election as new head of the German Bishops’ Conference last March, when he succeeded Cardinal Reinhard Marx, it was his first official meeting with Pope Francis.

“We must find answers to urgent challenges facing the Church, ranging from coming to terms with sexual abuse of minors to the dramatic numbers of people leaving the Church,” Bätzing pointed out. He did not explain how questioning Church teaching and customs of apostolic origin like celibacy help in addressing these issues.

The bishop of Limburg said the Pope referred to his letter to the Church in Germany, which he had written one year ago.

In his letter, the Holy Father had not only praised and encouraged the Synodal Path as an expression of synodality. He had also expressed some criticism, saying Catholic leaders in Germany should not be “looking for immediate results with hasty consequences, also in the media, which are fleeting due to a lack of deepening and maturation, or because they do not correspond to the vocation given to us.”

Pope Francis had also called out German Catholics for their tendency to advance mostly structural developments, saying “what we need is much more than a structural, organizational or functional change.” He even characterized this attitude as a “new pelagianism.”

“The basis of this temptation is the idea that the best response to the many problems and shortcomings is to reorganize things, make changes, and ‘patch things up,’ with the goal of ordering and smoothing out ecclesial life, adapting it to the current logic or that of a particular group,” he wrote.

Instead of structural developments, the Pope referred to evangelization as the main goal the Synodal Path should have. “Pastoral conversion reminds us that evangelization must be our guiding criterion par excellence, by which we can recognize all the steps we are called to take as an ecclesial community; evangelization is the proper and essential mission of the Church.”

The German Bishops’ Conference’s press release after Bätzing’s meeting with Pope Francis did not mention evangelization at all, even though it was focused mainly on the Synodal Path, whose “guiding criterion,” Francis wrote last year, was to be evangelization.

In 2019, the head of the German Bishops’ Conference, at the time still Cardinal Marx, and the head of the Central Committee of German Catholics, Thomas Sternberg, who together initiated the Synodal Path, put their own spin on the Pope’s letter.

“Pope Francis wants to support the Church in Germany in its search for answers to the questions that move us all regarding a future-oriented form of the Church,” they stated. “We will take up this letter as an orientation for our common action and reflect on it intensively on the Synodal Path.”

According to Bishop Bätzing, Pope Francis reminded the proponents of the Synodal Path, as well as the German Church in general, to “not lose sight of the poor and the old, the refugees and those in need. “The Pope expressly asked that the effects and experiences in the face of the coronavirus pandemic be taken into consideration on the further Path,” the bishop added.

He also expressed his hope that German Catholics could influence the upcoming synod on synodality in Rome. “I hope that with the experiences of the Synodal Path we can make a contribution to the World Synod of Bishops in October 2022,” Bätzing said.

A LifeSiteNews petition to the German bishops calls on them to resist the protestantization of the German Church due to the Synodal Path’s dissent from Catholic teaching on celibacy, clerical authority, the ban on female ordination, contraception, cohabitation, homosexuality, and gender theory. With more than 11,000 signatures, readers may still sign it today.


  catholic, celibacy, contraception, diocese of limburg, georg batzing, german bishops conference, homosexuality, pope francis, reinhard marx, synodal path

News

Pro-family advocate points to fatherlessness as ‘a huge problem’

German Gabriele Kuby spelled out the problems that families face today, from divorce to gender ideology to government policies that harm the traditional family.
Mon Jun 29, 2020 - 7:11 pm EST
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Martin Bürger Follow Martin
By Martin Bürger

WÜRZBURG, Germany, June 29, 2020 (LifeSiteNews) – Well-known German pro-family advocate Gabriele Kuby spelled out this past weekend at a conference the numerous issues that many families, especially their children, are facing today, from divorce and fatherlessness to gender ideology and government policies that harm the traditional family.

“It is indeed a huge problem in our society that fathers are absent,” she said. “It is proven that children who grow up without a father who has the task of setting boundaries, giving orientation, being firm, having courage, making the child brave – if all this is missing, which the father can do much better than the mother, if all this is missing, the chances that the child will become delinquent, have mental disorders, behavioral problems, etc., take drugs, drop out of school, are much higher.”

“We need the men,” Kuby stressed. “We need the fathers.”

The trained sociologist repeatedly referred to scientific research, which, Kuby said, proves “what everyone knows in their hearts.” American sociology professor Mark Regnerus, for instance, studied whether situations in which children grow up with two men or two women as “parents” are as healthy as the traditional family.

“It has disadvantages for children if they don’t experience this triangulation, as the word is called, this triangle of father, mother, child, but only two fathers or only two mothers,” Kuby pointed out.

Kuby made her remarks during a panel discussion last Sunday, which was streamed by pro-family organization “Familie geht vor!” (Family first!), uniting numerous other groups supporting the family. Originally, “Familie geht vor!” had planned to have an outdoor event with thousands of families in Würzburg in the heart of Germany. Due to the coronavirus pandemic, the event was mainly held online.

On the question of divorce, Kuby continued, “There is no doubt at all that divorces are a great burden on children and that they are basically a lifelong burden.

“A divorce is for a child … a constant drama, because there is no more stability,” she explained. “They have to go through new combinations again and again. The partner marries again, separates again, there is an unmanageable system of relationships, and the child has to go through it again and again, and approve of it.”

Kuby said, “It is not acceptable for a society to say that the emotions and the desires and the passions and the suffering, which also exists in marriages, of course – that this is the only thing we are guided by. And the children have to submit without complaining.”

According to Kuby, who supported her statements by referencing several studies, children and young people generally long to have a family, as well as faithfulness in their relationships. “This longing cannot be eradicated in the hearts of the people,” she commented. “This is the good news, and we can build upon it.”

Kuby also criticized the daycare system, where working parents place their children, sometimes only at a few months old, as incredibly stressful. “The children get sick from it,” she pointed out. However, the system does not benefit parents, either, Kuby said. Parents are “exhausted from their jobs … coming to the daycare, receive this poor little worm, and then they are supposed to spend quality time with the children.”

The German government, the pro-family advocate explained, heavily supports parents who put their children in the daycare system early on. “I am in favor of freedom of choice,” Kuby said, “but we cannot choose if we don’t have the material conditions among which we can choose at all. And if the daycare is supported, supported, supported, with 1,000 euros a month, and mothers receive 120 euros for retirement, then there is no freedom of choice.”

The sociologist talked about the unseen consequences of the daycare system. According to studies, up to one-third of the young generation are ill in one way or another, with acute illnesses turning into chronic conditions. Even from an economic point of view, the cost of the daycare system, if everything is factored in, far exceeds the cost of not having mothers in the workforce a few weeks after their babies are born.

In the end, Kuby briefly talked about gender ideology, pointing out that it has been imposed on countries by the United Nations, the World Health Organization, and the European Union.

To fix the system, she said, “We simply have to make the demands that correspond to the order of creation. And the order of creation says: The child as a small unfinished being belongs to his mother, and he needs a father to show him the world.”

Apart from Kuby, two representatives of parent organizations, Andrea Heck and Romy Richter, participated in the panel discussion, as well as Protestant preacher Alexander Bischoff.

Richter lamented the loss of a parenting culture. “We hunger to experience: How does family work? How do we do it? We have already forgotten how to do it. Our instincts are already gone. I experience many parents simply on a hamster wheel, working through all these activities.”

“We don’t even have a feeling for it anymore, and we also lose this knowledge of what the children really need. They need to bond, and the way children bond in early childhood is not compatible with a professional activity of the woman who is absent, then.”

Bischoff emphasized that after his move to a small town in Bavaria, the elderly living on their street are incredibly happy about having kids around. His neighbors said they even turned off the television to listen to the kids playing.

For Andrea Heck, fighting against policies that harm the traditional family is difficult. “Us families hardly have any lobby,” she said. “Us mothers hardly have any lobby, either.”

The organization “Familie geht vor!” consists of 15 different groups and several individuals advocating for the protection of marriage and the family, the right of parents to educate their children, the right of children to their one mother and their one father, and financial justice for families. The organization opposes any indoctrination by homosexuality and gender ideology.

Hedwig von Beverfoerde, a speaker for “Familie geht vor!” and leader of “Demo für Alle,” another pro-family group, said, “Anti-family ideas continue to spread and are gradually being implemented politically – pushed by powerful lobby groups and the media. In contrast, we demand a political turnaround in favor of the family. To achieve this goal, we need to fly the flag effectively in the public eye.”

While it was not possible to have families from across Germany come to Würzburg, several activists were present in the city nonetheless, trying to get people to support the cause of the family.


  andrea heck, daycare, familie geht vor, families first, fatherlessness, gabriele kuby, germany, hedwig von beverfoerde, parents, pro-family

News

Black police officer tells white BLM protester: US has a ‘sin problem…read the Bible’

‘America and the world has a sin problem...you understand me? That’s where racism, injustice, and hate and anger and violence come from. It’s not about racism.'
Mon Jun 29, 2020 - 6:27 pm EST
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Breitbart / screenshot
Martin Bürger Follow Martin
By Martin Bürger

PETITION: Urge U.S. Catholic Bishops Conference to defend Catholic heritage and statues! Sign the petition here.

WASHINGTON, D.C., June 29, 2020 (LifeSiteNews) – A black police officer in the nation’s capital has told a white Black Lives Matter protester that sin is at the root of racism. “America has a sin problem,” the officer said. “The world has a sin problem, ma’am. Okay?”

The police officer then proceeded to tell the protester about the message of the Bible. “Jesus said, ‘I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life. No one comes to the Father except through Me,’” he pointed out in a video first published by Breitbart.

“America and the world has a sin problem,” he added. “You understand me? That’s where racism, injustice, and hate and anger and violence come from. It’s not about racism.” 

At the end of the video, the officer encouraged the young protester to “read the Bible.”

What the police officer stated in a few short seconds echoes what the Catechism of the Catholic Church teaches about the equality and differences among human beings. “Created in the image of the one God and equally endowed with rational souls, all men have the same nature and the same origin. Redeemed by the sacrifice of Christ, all are called to participate in the same divine beatitude: all therefore enjoy an equal dignity,” according to the Catechism.

Following from the “dignity as persons and the rights that flow from it,” all human beings are created equal, which in turn means that every kind “of social or cultural discrimination in fundamental personal rights on the grounds of sex, race, color, social conditions, language, or religion must be curbed and eradicated as incompatible with God’s design.”

However, this equality regarding the dignity of each person does not mean that all differences between human beings are wrong. “On coming into the world, man is not equipped with everything he needs for developing his bodily and spiritual life. He needs others. Differences appear tied to age, physical abilities, intellectual or moral aptitudes, the benefits derived from social commerce, and the distribution of wealth. The ‘talents’ are not distributed equally.”

“There exist also sinful inequalities,” the Catechism explains, “that affect millions of men and women. These are in open contradiction of the Gospel: Their equal dignity as persons demands that we strive for fairer and more humane conditions. Excessive economic and social disparity between individuals and peoples of the one human race is a source of scandal and militates against social justice, equity, human dignity, as well as social and international peace.”

The bishops in the United States released a pastoral letter against racism in 2018. In it, they repeatedly referred to racism as an evil and a sin.

“Racism arises when—either consciously or unconsciously—a person holds that his or her own race or ethnicity is superior, and therefore judges persons of other races or ethnicities as inferior and unworthy of equal regard,” the bishops explained. “When this conviction or attitude leads individuals or groups to exclude, ridicule, mistreat, or unjustly discriminate against persons on the basis of their race or ethnicity, it is sinful. Racist acts are sinful because they violate justice.”

Racism reveals “a failure to acknowledge the human dignity of the persons offended, to recognize them as the neighbors Christ calls us to love.”

According to the bishops, “often racism comes in the form of the sin of omission, when individuals, communities, and even churches remain silent and fail to act against racial injustice when it is encountered.”

The bishops alleged already in 2018 that systemic racism was present in American society.

They claimed that “the water crisis in Flint, Michigan, resulted from policy decisions that negatively affected the inhabitants, the majority of whom were African Americans.”

However, the bishops did not explain which of the policy decisions, even in the decades leading up to the water crisis, were made precisely because the majority of the inhabitants were African Americans. They simply said, “We could go on, for the instances of discrimination, prejudice, and racism, sadly, are too many.”

In addition, the bishops argued there are “ways that racism has permeated the life of the Church and persists to a degree even today.” In the past, “in many Catholic parishes, people of color were relegated to segregated seating, and required to receive the Holy Eucharist after white parishioners. All too often, leaders of the Church have remained silent about the horrific violence and other racial injustices perpetuated against African Americans and others.”

The bishops concluded their letter by referring to the conversion of St. Paul, which they called “a powerful reminder of how God’s grace can transform even the hardest of hearts.”

Accordingly, “Prayer and working toward conversion must be our first response in the face of evil actions” like racism.

“Therefore, we must never limit our understanding of God’s power to bring about the conversion of even those whose hearts appear completely frozen by the sin of racism,” they added. “Our communities must never cease to invite and encourage them in love to abandon these sinful thoughts and destructive ways.”


  black lives matter, george floyd, rioting, riots

News

Accommodating homosexuality makes ‘better Catholics,’ priest insists at ‘Pride Mass’

Despite gay 'Pride' events being canceled from coast to coast due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Cardinal Joseph Tobin permitted an LGBT 'Pride Mass' to be conducted in his archdiocese.
Mon Jun 29, 2020 - 6:26 pm EST
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Our Lady of Grace & St. Joseph - Hoboken / YouTube
Doug Mainwaring Doug Mainwaring Follow Doug
By Doug Mainwaring

HOBOKEN, New Jersey, June 29, 2020 (LifeSiteNews) — Despite gay “Pride” events being canceled from coast to coast due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Cardinal Joseph Tobin has permitted an LGBT “Pride Mass” to be conducted in his archdiocese.

For the third year in a row, the “Annual Pride Mass in support of our LGBTQ brothers and sisters” was held on Sunday at the merged parishes of Our Lady of Grace and St. Joseph in Hoboken, New Jersey.  

The Mass, which was livestreamed on YouTube, seems to show sparse attendance. Rainbow-colored banners lined the sanctuary.

The Archdiocese of Newark resumed Sunday Masses on June 21 after three months of suppression due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The current “Phase Three” directives require churches to restrict their attendance to 25 percent of capacity or fifty people, whichever is lower, with all who enter the churches required to wear face coverings among other mandatory “social distancing” dictates.

Previously, the archdiocese had suppressed not only the Mass, but also baptisms, funerals, confessions, and last rites.

Pastor Fr. Alexander Santora delivered an overtly political homily, condemning Republican presidents Ronald Reagan and Donald Trump for allowing “their personal prejudices or political needs to override their oath of office to protect the people they serve” — i.e., gay, lesbian, and transgender-identifying individuals. 

Image
Advertisement on Our Lady of Grace and St. Joseph’s website.

Santora was quick to link the death of George Floyd and the protests and riots it has spawned to what he sees as ongoing discrimination within the Church against LGBT-identifying Catholics. The priest seeks nothing less than the normalization of homosexual and trangender identity and relationships.  

“LGBT individuals are welcome and need to share their stories so stereotypes die and human beings emerge who desire what anyone in life wants: to love and be loved and accepted as they are,” insisted Santora. 

“This is a nascent movement, and there are many in the Church opposed to gay accommodation,” he asserted. “More pastoral outreach and discussion are needed to break down walls. There is a need to minister together and to see each other as brothers and sisters without any labels in places around the world, though repression is still strong.”

“There is no new life without casting aside the old,” said Santora. “This is happening in the Church as we listen to our LGBT brothers and sisters and make our churches hospitable to all, especially those who have been on the margins not by their own choice.”

“Just as with the reforms of political systems will be ongoing, so will the church's mission and ministry to the LGBT members, but with the difference,” he said, again attempting to draw a connection to the African-American struggle for civil rights.

“In the 1960s under the leadership of Reverend Martin Luther King, Jr., blacks led the march for freedom and equality,” said Santora. “We let go of any racist tendencies. So too with LGBT rights and concerns.”

“We jettison the old prejudice and celebrate pride in our LGBT community because we then become better people and better Catholics,” he concluded.

During his homily as well as in an opinion piece he penned for NJ.com published the same day, Santora praised “Outreach 2020: Catholic Leaders Speak with the LGBTQ Community,” a 43-minute video hosted by Fr. James Martin, S.J., produced after a conference by the same name to have taken place at Fordham University this month had to be postponed due to the pandemic. 

The video includes messages from Santa Fe archbishop John C. Wester; Bishop John Stowe, OFM Conv.; Fr. Bryan Massingale; and Sister Jeannine Gramick, S.L.; all of whom have notoriously departed from Church teaching to push for the normalization of homosexuality and trangenderism within Catholicism.

Concerning Gramick, a co-founder of the dissident “New Ways Ministry” in Maryland, Santora wrote, “She has been threatened and badgered by the Vatican for her pioneering ministry and hasn’t given up.”

“Gay discrimination lives in the Catholic church,” said Santora, who seemed surprised that the Archdiocese of Detroit had recently “told a parish group formed to support families of LGBTQ Catholics and any Dignity groups that they could not hold events on church property.” He seemed to question the bishop’s characterization of Fortunate Families as offering “a competing vision” of Church teaching.

Pro-LGBT history of Cardinal Tobin’s archdiocese

In May 2017, Cardinal Joseph Tobin personally received a group of individuals identifying as LGBT at Newark’s Cathedral-Basilica of the Sacred Heart in conjunction with an inaugural “LGBT Pilgrimage” to the cathedral. Tobin had said he was delighted to welcome the LGBT group and personally approved their flyer for the event.

When asked at the time by the New York Times if he should have taken the opportunity at the event to call the “LGBT pilgrims” out of sin, he responded, “That sounds a little backhanded to me.

Tobin, a 2016 Pope Francis appointee to the cardinalate, is among a handful of Church leaders to endorse LGBT-affirming Father James Martin’s controversial Building a Bridge book.

In 2018, following six priests having anonymously reported a homosexual subculture in the Newark archdiocese, the cardinal sent the priests of his archdiocese a letter encouraging them to remain silent if the media were to try to contact them. He also denied that anyone “has ever spoken to me about a ‘gay sub-culture’ in the Archdiocese of Newark.”

The Archdiocese of Newark is one of the New Jersey dioceses that paid settlements to former priest victims of disgraced ex-cardinal Theodore McCarrick, one of Tobin’s predecessors. Questions remain about who in the U.S. Church hierarchy knew about McCarrick’s predation of boys and men.

The Catholic Church holds that same-sex attraction is disordered and that homosexual acts are sinful. Church teaching states that “homosexual persons are called to chastity” (CCC 2359), which is also what its teaching says about all people, since sexual relations are reserved for marriage, which is between a man and woman (CCC 2360).

To respectfully express concern about the pride Mass:

Church of Our Lady of Grace
400 Willow Ave.
Hoboken, NJ 07030
201-659-0369

Email [email protected]

Archdiocese of Newark
171 Clifton Avenue
P.O. BOX 9500
Newark, NJ 07104 

(973) 497-4000


  archdiocese of newark, catholic, gay pride, homosexuality, joseph tobin, lgbt tyranny, propaganda

News

California archbishop performs exorcism on site of St. Junipero Serra statue desecration

Abp. Salvatore Cordileone of San Francisco said the statue of St. Junípero Serra had been 'blasphemously torn down' and that an 'act of sacrilege' had occurred.
Mon Jun 29, 2020 - 4:40 pm EST
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Abp. Salvatore Cordileone of San Francisco, Calif. PatristicNectarFilms / YouTube
Dorothy Cummings McLean Dorothy Cummings McLean Follow Dorothy
By Dorothy Cummings McLean

SAN FRANCISCO, California, June 29, 2020 (LifeSiteNews) ― The archbishop of San Francisco has led prayers of reparation and exorcism at the base of the profaned statue of St. Junípero Serra.

On June 27, Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone led a group of Catholics to Golden Gate Park, where a statue of the great missionary was first unveiled on November 17, 1907. On June 19, 2020, the monument to St. Junípero Serra was toppled by a mob inspired by the Black Lives Matter movement. In reparation for the vandalism, Cordileone led the small crowd assembled before the plinth in the rosary and performed a simple exorcism ceremony.

Cordileone said the statue of St. Junípero Serra had been “blasphemously torn down” and that an “act of sacrilege” had occurred where they prayed. He said the outrage was an “act of the Evil One” and that evil had “made itself present” at the site.

“This [sacrilege] is the activity of the Evil One, who wants to bring down the Church, who wants to bring down all Christian believers,” the archbishop said.

“So we have gathered together to pray to God in an act of reparation, asking God’s mercy upon us, upon our whole city, that we might turn our hearts back to Him,” he continued.

The reparation took the form of fasting and praying the rosary and the prayer for the intercession of Saint Michael, as well as blessing the ravaged plinth and site with holy water.

“We offer this prayer and bless the ground with holy water, so that God might purify it, sanctify it, so that we in return might be sanctified,” Cordileone said.

The statue of St. Junípero Serra had been “very much a part” of his life growing up, the archbishop revealed in an interview after the service. He confessed to feeling distress and pain over the ongoing violence against memorials of saints and said the crowd that had gathered for the prayers and exorcism was a “real comfort” to him.

“I was feeling great distress and a ... deep wound in my soul when I [saw] these horrendous acts of blasphemy and disparaging of the memory of Serra, who was such a great hero, such a great defender of the indigenous people of this land.”

Cordileone asked that Catholics pray, fast, and learn about the history of St. Junípero Serra and the Catholic Church. He said Catholics should be “proud” of the history of their Church but also live in humility and pray that they, too, “with the grace of God” give the world goodness, beauty, and truth. 

Last week the Archbishop of San Francisco wrote a statement condemning the violence and vandalism that have swept the United States since the May 25 death of an intoxicated black man under the knee of a white police officer in Minneapolis.

“What is happening to our society?” Cordileone asked. 

“A renewed national movement to heal memories and correct the injustices of racism and police brutality in our country has been hijacked by some into a movement of violence, looting, and vandalism. The toppling and defacing of statues in Golden Gate Park, including that of St. Junípero Serra, have become the latest example,” he continued.

“The memorialization of historic figures merits an honest and fair discussion as to how and to whom such honor should be given. But here, there was no such rational discussion; it was mob rule, a troubling phenomenon that seems to be repeating itself throughout the country.”

In his statement, Cordileone defended the Franciscan St. Junípero Serra, who lived from 1713 to 1784, as an advocate of the poor and oppressed.

“St. Serra made heroic sacrifices to protect the indigenous people of California from their Spanish conquerors, especially the soldiers,” he wrote. 

“Even with his infirmed leg which caused him such pain, he walked all the way to Mexico City to obtain special faculties of governance from the Viceroy of Spain in order to discipline the military who were abusing the Indians. And then he walked back to California,” he continued.

“And lest there be any doubt, we have a physical reminder to this day: everywhere there is a presidio (soldiers’ barracks) associated with a mission in the chain of 21 missions that he founded, the presidio is miles away from the mission itself and the school.”

The archbishop pointed out that St. Junípero Serra had also offered the indigenous people of the region “the best thing he had: the knowledge and love of Jesus Christ, which he and his fellow Franciscan friars did through education, health care, and training in the agrarian arts.”

The archbishop argued that “historical wrongs cannot be righted” by rewriting history. He also counseled a rational and loving “righteous indignation” in place of rage.

“Anger against injustice can be a healthy response when it is that righteous indignation which moves a society forward,” he wrote. “But as Christ himself teaches, and St. Francis modeled, love and not rage is the only answer.”

St. Junípero Serra was canonized by Pope Francis in 2015.


  black lives matter, catholic, exorcism, george floyd, junipero serra, salvatore cordileone, san francisco, statues

News

Zuckerberg caves to boycott, will put warnings on politicians’ posts, may censor Trump

The Facebook founder says the changes directed at 'identity-based hate' ultimately will impact what 'matters most -- voting.'
Mon Jun 29, 2020 - 4:29 pm EST
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Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg.
Calvin Freiburger Calvin Freiburger Follow Calvin
By Calvin Freiburger

June 29, 2020 (LifeSiteNews) – After several days of public pressure, Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg is submitting to the demands of a coalition of advertisers who have complained that the social network doesn’t do enough to censor or discredit conservative speech.

The Anti-Defamation League, NAACP, Sleeping Giants, Color of Change, Free Press, and Common Sense have accused Facebook of “allow(ing) incitement to violence against protesters fighting for racial justice in America in the wake of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Tony McDade, Ahmaud Arbery, Rayshard Brooks and so many others”; of legitimizing conservative news outlets Breitbart and the Daily Caller; and of “turn(ing) a blind eye to blatant voter suppression on their platform.”

The coalition demands that Facebook create new layers of moderation and engagement for targets of “identity-based hate,” to take steps to ensure ad revenue does not support “content labeled as misinformation or hate,” and to more closely monitor “extremism” in private Facebook groups. Verizon, Ben & Jerry’s, Patagonia, and REI are among the companies they got to agree to halt Facebook ads.

On Friday, Zuckerberg announced a handful of changes the company would be making to its policies, ostensibly in the name of “extra precautions to help everyone stay safe, stay informed, and ultimately use their voice where it matters most -- voting.”

Among those changes, he says Facebook is “prohibiting a wider category of hateful content in ads. Specifically, we're expanding our ads policy to prohibit claims that people from a specific race, ethnicity, national origin, religious affiliation, caste, sexual orientation, gender identity or immigration status are a threat to the physical safety, health or survival of others. We're also expanding our policies to better protect immigrants, migrants, refugees and asylum seekers from ads suggesting these groups are inferior or expressing contempt, dismissal or disgust directed at them.”

Breitbart senior tech correspondent Allum Bokhari suspects this change is a mere pretext to suppress one of President Donald Trump’s most popular campaign messages. “Pointing out the empirical that mass illegal immigration leads to rising crime and disorder was a major element of Trump’s 2016 campaign,” he writes, “and also features strongly in the campaigns of European right-wing populists such as Matteo Salvini and Viktor Orban, who have enjoyed considerable electoral success over the past five years.”

Facebook will also copy Twitter’s practice of putting warning labels on posts from political candidates or officeholders that are deemed beyond the pale. “We'll allow people to share this content to condemn it, just like we do with other problematic content, because this is an important part of how we discuss what's acceptable in our society,” Zuckerberg writes, “but we'll add a prompt to tell people that the content they're sharing may violate our policies.”

This change, and the protests that brought it about, is widely understood to be a reference to a social media post by Trump declaring that “THUGS” among the protesters, who had been filmed engaging in violent acts such as smashing storefronts and setting buildings on fire, were “dishonoring the memory of George Floyd, and I won’t let that happen. Just spoke to Governor Tim Walz and told him that the Military is with him all the way. Any difficulty and we will assume control but, when the looting starts, the shooting starts.”

Twitter set off a firestorm last month when it placed a warning over the tweet, claiming that it “violated the Twitter rules about glorifying violence.” Pressure quickly mounted for Facebook to do the same, which Zuckerberg initially declined to follow its lead, but soon suggested the company’s policies on the matter would “evolve” in the wake of employee protests. 

Conservatives, however, say further appeasement of the Left is the last thing Facebook needs to do, given the platform’s history of suppressing conservative content under vague or false pretenses. 

Multiple analyses have found that algorithm changes instituted at the beginning of 2018 disproportionately impacted conservative politicians and websites. Last year, an insider revealed that Facebook “deboosts” traffic to several mainstream conservative sites. 

Most recently, a pair of whistleblowers came forward to attest that Facebook aggressively discriminates against conservatives on a global scale for the purpose of influencing election outcomes.

One of the insiders provided footage of content moderators openly discussing how they would like to delete “every Donald Trump post I see on the timeline” and “delete all Republicans...for terrorism” if they so much as post a photo “wearing a MAGA hat.” Cognizant service delivery manager Demian Gordon can also be seen saying he would not hold staff accountable for taking down Trump posts, on the grounds that they “gotta get the Cheeto (Trump) out of the office.”

The other described witnessing moderators “deleting on average 300 posts or actioning 300 posts a day” in a way “that just targeted conservatives or favored liberals,” with personnel equating Trump supporters with violent hate groups, while expressly making an exception for overtly-hateful posts by the moderators’ LGBT allies in the name of supporting Pride Month.


  big tech, boycotts, donald trump, facebook, free speech, mark zuckerberg, social media bias, social media censorship

News

New Gallup poll shows increasing American support for assisted suicide, polygamy, premarital sex

‘At least seven in 10 U.S. adults say birth control, drinking alcohol, getting a divorce, sex between an unmarried man and woman, gambling, and smoking marijuana are acceptable moral behaviors.’
Mon Jun 29, 2020 - 3:59 pm EST
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Martin Bürger Follow Martin
By Martin Bürger

URGENT PETITION: Tell the Supreme Court to overturn Roe v. Wade! Sign the petition here.

WASHINGTON, D.C., June 26, 2020 (LifeSiteNews) – A new Gallup poll released on June 23 paints the grim reality of American attitudes on a number of moral issues, including abortion, contraception, homosexuality, and assisted suicide. A striking 90 percent of the population thinks contraception is morally acceptable, with only seven percent saying it is morally wrong.

More than half of Americans support assisted suicide, but only 18 percent said suicide as such is morally unacceptable.

Alex Schadenberg, Executive Director of the Euthanasia Prevention Coalition, commented on that discrepancy, saying that “people are confused about the nature of these acts.” He said, “Americans need to be given more information before being questioned in a poll.”

“Whether a doctor assists the suicide or a person commits suicide without the assistance of a doctor, the act remains the same and the reason someone decides to do the act may be the same,” Schadenberg told LifeSiteNews. 

“For instance,” he added, “there are people who support assisted suicide and oppose the death penalty for the same reason. They believe that the state should not have the rights to take the lives of its citizens, people will be wrongly convicted and the drugs used for capital punishment are inhumane. With assisted suicide, the state gives the power to the physician to decide to kill, there are medical misdiagnosis and the same drugs are used for assisted suicide and capital punishment.”

As pointed out by Gallup, “A record-low 54% of Americans consider the death penalty to be morally acceptable, marking a six-percentage-point decrease since last year.”

The pollster added, “This year, 40% of U.S. adults think the death penalty is morally wrong, the highest in Gallup's 20-year trend. The high point in the public's belief that the death penalty is morally acceptable, 71%, was in 2006.” 

Gallup had asked Americans in May about the moral acceptability of 21 issues. “At least seven in 10 U.S. adults say birth control, drinking alcohol, getting a divorce, sex between an unmarried man and woman, gambling, and smoking marijuana are acceptable moral behaviors,” the well-respected pollster reported.

“Likewise, two-thirds of Americans consider gay or lesbian relations, having a baby outside of marriage and medical research using human embryonic stem cells as acceptable.”

Dr. Tara Sander Lee, Senior Fellow and Director of Life Sciences at the pro-life Charlotte Lozier Institute, told LifeSiteNews that “medical research that uses stem cells obtained from human embryos is unethical, because it involves the deliberate destruction of the youngest human beings amongst us.”

“All human beings,” she continued, “regardless of their developmental stage, deserve to be treated with dignity and respect, especially those most vulnerable, and not used as objects and means of experimentation. It is never right to intentionally destroy one group of human [beings] for the benefit of another group.”

According to Sander Lee, “there are much better and more successful alternatives available to scientists, including adult stem cells, which have been used to treat over 2 million patients worldwide with excellent results. No validated cures have been produced with embryonic stem cells. Research that respects every life is, and will always be, the ethical choice in modern science.”

A small majority of Americans said abortion, one of the most prominent issues in any political debate on social issues, is morally wrong. Forty-seven percent said abortion is unacceptable, whereas 44 percent said it is acceptable.

What sounds like a victory for the pro-life movement is put into perspective by the fact that 43 percent of Americans also think buying or wearing clothing made of animal fur is immoral, and only 31 percent say medical research involving stem cells obtained from human embryos is wrong.

One fifth of Americans says there is no problem with polygamy. Less than 15 years ago, in 2006, only five percent of the population considered one man having multiple wives to be morally acceptable.

Adultery was the least popular issue on which Americans were polled; only nine percent said it was acceptable.

Compared to 2007, several issues are now considered morally acceptable by a larger percentage of the population. Divorce rose from 65 percent to 77 percent. Sex between an unmarried man and woman was fine for 59 percent, which has increased to 72 percent this year.

54 percent said having a baby outside of wedlock was morally acceptable. That number has risen to 66 percent. The acceptance of homosexuality rose from 47 percent in 2007 to 66 percent in 2020, less than one generation later.

The 2020 Gallup poll found that “five issues are broadly viewed as morally wrong by liberals and conservatives alike: cloning humans, extramarital affairs, cloning animals, polygamy and suicide.”

The strongest discrepancy can be seen on the issue of abortion. Only 18 percent of people identifying as conservatives think abortion is morally acceptable. Among liberals, 70 percent have no objections to abortion.

There is at least a 40-point difference between liberals and conservatives on the issues of homosexuality and sex between teenagers, with liberals being more accepting of these practices.

With the exception of medical testing on animals, buying and wearing clothes made of animal fur, and the death penalty, liberals are more open to all 21 of the moral issues presented by the poll.


  abortion, assisted suicide, contraception, fornication, gallup poll, polygamy

News

Supreme Court: No First Amendment rights for foreign orgs pushing prostitution

The group Alliance for Open Society International (AOSI) challenged the law as an alleged violation of its freedom of speech.
Mon Jun 29, 2020 - 1:31 pm EST
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By Calvin Freiburger

PETITION: Demand Planned Parenthood return $80M improperly taken from coronavirus emergency fund! Sign the petition here.

WASHINGTON, D.C., June 29, 2020 (LifeSiteNews) – The United States Agency for International Development (USAID) can require foreign organizations to formally oppose prostitution and sex trafficking as a condition of receiving American aid dollars, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled Monday in a 5-3 decision.

The case concerns a 2003 law governing foreign aid meant to combat HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis, and malaria in Africa, which states that funds may only be distributed to organizations that have a “policy explicitly opposing prostitution and sex trafficking,” CNN reports. Congress’ purpose in enacting the condition almost 20 years ago was to fight “coercive practices that spread HIV/AIDS and degrade women and girls,” U.S. Solicitor General Christopher Michel explained in May.

The group Alliance for Open Society International (AOSI) challenged the law as an alleged violation of its freedom of speech. In May, AOSI attorney David Bowker argued that forcing the group to take a position against prostitution would force them into a hypocritical position, harming their “integrity and their reputation and their brand when they’re forced to speak out of two sides of their mouths.”

The Supreme Court previously ruled that imposing the condition on U.S.-based organizations would be unconstitutional, but ruled Monday that that was a moot point, as the First Amendment does not apply to non-American groups based outside the United States.

“Plaintiffs' foreign affiliates were incorporated in other countries and are legally separate from plaintiffs' American organizations,” Justice Brett Kavanaugh stated in his majority opinion. Liberal Justices Stephen Breyer, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, and Sonia Sotomayor dissented, while Justice Elena Kagan recused herself from the case, likely due to her past work on the issue as a Justice Department official.

AOSI also argued it should be exempt from the requirement because the formal positions of its foreign affiliate could be attributed to its American one, which does enjoy First Amendment protections. The majority rejected that argument.

“First Amendment cases involving speech misattribution between formally distinct speakers… are premised on something missing here: Government compulsion to associate with another entity,” the court wrote. “Even protecting the free speech rights of only those foreign organizations that are closely identified with American organizations would deviate from the fundamental principle that foreign organizations operating abroad do not possess rights under the U. S. Constitution and enmesh the courts in difficult line-drawing exercises.”

The Supreme Court also ruled 5-4 Monday against a Louisiana pro-life law requiring that abortion centers make arrangements for admitting women to nearby hospitals in cases of life-threatening complications. 


  alliance for open society international, brett kavanaugh, first amendment, foreign aid, prostitution, sex trafficking, supreme court, united states agency for international development, usaid

News

US bishop pulls priest from parish for ‘divisive’ remarks upholding Church’s stance on homosexuality

'Father Klee has shown a pattern of making communications to a broad audience on a variety of contemporary issues which are frankly divisive,' Bishop Robert Brennan wrote. 'Father Klee has been repeatedly warned about making these divisive communications and ordered to cease doing so.'
Mon Jun 29, 2020 - 12:38 pm EST
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Fr. Joseph Klee receives medical attention after his left hand was injured during an incident at a pro-life vigil in 2017. An abortion activist was charged with criminal mischief and disorderly conduct.
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By Dorothy Cummings McLean

PETITION: Urge U.S. Catholic Bishops Conference to defend Catholic heritage and statues! Sign the petition here.

COLUMBUS, Ohio, June 29, 2020 (LifeSiteNews) ― A bishop has yanked a priest known for his pro-life work from ministry thanks to threats by LGBT activists. 

Bishop Robert J. Brennan of the Diocese of Columbus in Ohio announced last week that Father Joseph Klee is neither assigned to, nor represents, the parishes of St. John the Baptist and Sacred Heart.  

“Father Klee has shown a pattern of making communications to a broad audience on a variety of contemporary issues which are frankly divisive,” Brennan wrote in a “Special Message” on the St. John the Baptist parish website.  

“While these communications seemingly present Catholic moral teaching, they are often offensive and disrespectful to the human dignity of persons,” he continued.  

“Father Klee has been repeatedly warned about making these divisive communications and ordered to cease doing so. Further steps are being considered at this time.”

Klee told LifeSiteNews that the bishop’s announcement was caused by prayer hours he held on the Solemnity of the Sacred Heart, this June 19, and on the Memorial of the Immaculate Heart of Mary, the following day, as well by the threat of violence from “the local active homosexual community.” 

LifeSiteNews has ascertained that Klee’s prayer hours were held outdoors, as a form of “outreach,” and featured a banner reading “God’s Marriage = 1 Man + 1 Woman.” According to the witness, the Catholics who participated prayed and sang hymns peacefully whereas some people driving by either honked in support or screamed insults including “unmentionable sexual suggestions.” 

A Columbus Catholic who spoke under condition of anonymity told LifeSiteNews that he has known Klee for 20 years and attended his regular Thursday night Adoration liturgies. He said that Klee, a late vocation, had been incardinated in his native Columbus but marginalized because he is orthodox. 

Klee, he said, has actively preached a pro-life message and on modesty. The priest ministers to nuns on “the periphery” and works in prison chaplaincy. For over 10 years Klee also was the chaplain of a diocesan “Courage” program for same-sex attracted Catholics striving to remain chaste which remained “under the radar until it got popular.” After that Klee was replaced, and the program “fizzled,” he said. 

LifeSiteNews’ source said that complaints about Fr. Klee’s Holy Hours were made by LGBT activists.  

“Gays make demands at the [diocesan] chancery on [East] Gay Street and expect their demands to be honored,” the source said. 

Bishop Brennan also removed Klee from his ministry to the Spanish-speaking community at St. Peter’s Church in Columbus. A spokesperson for the parish announced this on Facebook, saying: 

Fr. Joseph Klee has ably and tirelessly served in Hispanic Ministry here at St. Peter for the last two years. On June 22nd Bishop Brennan relieved Fr. Klee of that responsibility. Fr. Summers will preside at the Sunday Mass in Spanish until he leaves when Fr. Tuttle will take over. Fr. Klee has been a great help to our Hispanic parishioners and to Fr. Summers. We thank him for his time with us and wish him well.

As a response to his removal, Klee exhorted faithful Catholics to “make our lives an Act of Reparation to the Sacred Heart.” He asked for prayers on two themes: fortitude for the “spiritual leadership of the Church” and freedom for those “deluded by the false promises of the homosexual agenda” to break free.

“Please pray and make sacrifices for the following two intentions (in addition to praying for me),” he wrote. Klee also asked for prayers for:

1. For a tremendous outpouring of graces upon the spiritual leadership of the Church (specifically upon the bishops and priests), that they would be empowered with the Cardinal Virtue of Fortitude.  That they would implore the intercession of the martyrs, lest they go from being potential victims of Satan’s attacks, to being actual instigators and accomplices (like the Pharisees in Our Lord’s day).  Please pray that they would be freed from a subtle resignation to despair, specifically that of falling into discouragement that the authentic Gospel of Christ and the teachings of the Catholic Faith are not the answer, but that atheistic socialism is.

2. For all those men and women (and increasingly, the boys and girls too) deluded by the false promises of the homosexual agenda, and especially those in the active homosexual lifestyle, that they would be given the grace to break free from the devil’s grasp.  We pray that they would acquire the Theological Virtue of Hope – that they would be inspired to believe that they can be freed from the sinful enslavement that the practice of sodomy entails.  We pray that many would come to understand that the Sacraments of the Eucharist and Confession are indispensable, for receiving the necessary graces to resist grave sin.

Klee was injured and almost run over by an abortion business volunteer on April 8, 2017. Michelle Davis had stolen Klee’s pro-life signs from the public sidewalk in front of Founder’s Women’s Health Centre and put them in her minivan. She then attempted to flee the scene, and Klee caught his hand in the vehicle’s grille as he got out of her way. The woman was initially charged with criminal mischief and disorderly conduct but not with assault on the priest.

In 2012, Klee was filmed giving a speech for the “Final Push Heartbeat Rally” in Columbus. The Heartbeat Bill was finally passed in 2019 but was soon blocked by a federal judge.

Contact information for respectful communications:

Bishop Robert J. Brennan
Diocese of Columbus
197 E. Gay Street
Columbus, OH 43215
614-228-2457
Contact form for Bishop Brennan on the website of the Diocese of Columbus


  abortion, bishop robert brennan, catholic, diocese of columbus, homosexuality, joseph klee, robert brennan

News

Catholic priest, laity defend statue of St. Louis as leftist protestors become increasingly violent

Black Lives Matter protestors also want St. Louis, Missouri to change its name. St. Louis IX is the only king of France to be canonized, and is known for ending trial by combat and replacing it with trial by jury.
Mon Jun 29, 2020 - 11:21 am EST
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By Paul Smeaton

PETITION: Urge U.S. Catholic Bishops Conference to defend Catholic heritage and statues! Sign the petition here.

ST. LOUIS, Missouri, June 29, 2020 (LifeSiteNews) — A Catholic priest in Missouri addressed hundreds of angry protestors while defending a statue of St. Louis in the city named after the sainted king on a day when Catholic laity praying at the statue were physically attacked by protestors.

Father Stephen Schumacher, a priest of the Archdiocese of St. Louis, joined Catholic laity in Forest Park on Saturday who placed themselves between the already vandalized statue and activists calling for it to be torn down.

Attempting to inform the protestors of the character and virtue of St. Louis, Schumacher said, “St. Louis was a man who willed to use his kingship to do good for his people.”

Umar Lee, one of the organizers of the protests, had said earlier in the day that the statue “is gonna come down,” as reported by Joel Currier of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.

Lee said that St. Louis “represents hate and we're trying to create a city of love.” 

“We're trying to create a city where black lives matter,” he continued. “We're trying to create a city where there is no antisemitism or Islamophobia … this is not a symbol of our city in 2020.”

“It’s a revolution,” another protestor, Moji Sidiqi of the Regional Muslim Action Network, told the local newspaper.

“It's time for change … right now, our number one mission is to take this thing down and sit down with people who want to see positive change take place and continue to heal our country,” she added.

Sidiqi also said that she thinks the city of St. Louis should be renamed “to celebrate the city’s racial, ethnic and religious diversity.”

 

The protestors have so far been unable to tear down the statue, and Catholics from the St. Louis Forever Rosary Coalition group have been cleaning the graffiti from its base and organizing daily prayer vigils at the site. 

‘Black Lives Matter protesters started to harass, berate, and assault the Catholics [who] were peacefully praying’

On Saturday afternoon a number of Catholics were attacked while praying the Rosary in front of the statue.

“Yesterday, while praying for peace and unity in our city and the protection of the Saint Louis statue, Black Lives Matter protesters started to harass, berate, and assault the Catholics that were peacefully praying,” Connor Martin, one of those praying at the vigil, posted to social media.

“We did nothing in retaliation. We allowed them to spit on us, call us names, put their fingers in our faces, push us, and antagonize, but we did not retaliate. We continued to peacefully pray. One male then came over and said he would attack myself, one other Catholic man, and a Catholic woman that was there if we did not leave. We continued to pray,” Martin continued. 

“At that moment someone in the crowd poured an unidentified liquid on the older man pictured below in the comments protecting his head, and was then attacked by a violent individual, also pictured below with his arm pulled back about to attack the elderly man. We got the elderly man out of there safely, and I was about to leave to retrieve my lunch as a friend of mine had just come over to tell me my food had arrived, when the mob approached him. They asked if he was with me, and when he said yes they began to berate him. They took his walking stick from him and when he didn’t react they knocked his hat off of his head, called him a skin head, and attacked him. At this point I intervened to pull the attacker off of my friend, and I was attacked by the mob and the attacker. I have a video attached below of the assault.” 

Martin said that he will be pressing charges against the attackers and has called on anyone who you can identify anyone in the videos or pictures to let him know. 

“This can not stand,” he continued. “The police were called 6 times by others on the sidelines and never showed up. The righteous must defend themselves, as it appears the government no longer is. I hope Donald J. Trump, Mike Parson, Senator Josh Hawley, Senator Roy Blunt, Sam Page, Mayor Lyda Krewson, and other public officials address this, as if not corrected things will only get worse.”

“Please continue to pray for peace as we go through this frightening time in our [nation’s] history,” Martin concluded.

Martin posted a series of videos of the incidents to social media. 

The Archdiocese of St. Louis published a statement on Saturday evening which insisted that St. Louis represented peace and respect for one’s neighbor. 

“The history of the statue of St. Louis, the King is one founded in piety and reverence before God, and for non-believers, respect for one’s neighbor. The reforms that St. Louis implemented in French government focused on impartial justice, protecting the rights of his subjects, steep penalties for royal officials abusing power, and a series of initiatives to help the poor,” the archdiocese said.

“King Louis IX’s renowned work in charity helped elevate him to Sainthood. His daily suppers were shared with numerous beggars, whom he invited to the royal table. On many evenings, he would not let them leave before he washed their feet. He personally paid to feed more than 100 poor Parisians every day. His care for the sick was equally moving; St. Louis frequently ministered to lepers. He also created a number of hospitals, including one for the blind and another for ex-prostitutes,” the statement continued.

Statues of Catholic saints are increasingly being targeted in the violent protests that have swept across the country following the death of George Floyd. Last weekend in California protestors pulled down and desecrated statues of Catholic missionary St. Junipero Serra in both San Francisco and Los Angeles, while a group of courageous young Catholics successfully defended Serra’s statue outside Ventura City Hall.

Shaun King, a leading voice in the Black Lives Matter (BLM) movement, has called for the destruction of images and statues of a “white” Jesus and Mary his mother. Another Black Lives Matter activist last week used social media to call on mobs and rioters to protest a Catholic parish in San Diego, saying that the “white” parishioners did not think black lives mattered and they were “staunch” Trump supporters.

Reflecting on the current destruction of Catholic statues across the country, an article published last week on the website of the Priestly Fraternity of St. Peter recalled the words of Bishop John Lancaster Spalding of Peoria and his analysis of the American Know-Nothing riots of the mid-1850s.

“It was not the American people who were seeking to make war on the Church, but merely a party of religious fanatics and unprincipled demagogues who as little represented the American people as did the mobs whom they incited to bloodshed and incendiarism,” Spalding wrote. 

“Their whole conduct was un-American and opposed to all the principles and traditions of our free institutions.”


  archdiocese of st. louis, black lives matter, catholic, george floyd, iconoclasm, missouri, riots, st. louis, st. louis ix, statues

News

BREAKING: Supreme Court strikes down Louisiana abortion regulations

Liberal Justice Stephen Breyer wrote the majority opinion. Chief Justice Roberts concurred, reversing his own past decision to uphold a similar Texas law.
Mon Jun 29, 2020 - 10:54 am EST
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By Calvin Freiburger

URGENT PETITION: Tell the Supreme Court to overturn Roe v. Wade! Sign the petition here.

WASHINGTON, D.C., June 29, 2020 (LifeSiteNews) – The United States Supreme Court decided 5-4 to strike down a Louisiana law requiring basic medical precautions in the event of abortion complications, with Chief Justice John Roberts reversing his own past decision to uphold a similar Texas law.

June Medical Services LLC v. Russo concerned Louisiana’s requirement that abortion centers make arrangements for admitting women to nearby hospitals in cases of life-threatening complications. 

The abortion industry’s attorneys argued the law is no different from the Texas law the Supreme Court struck down in 2016’s Whole Woman’s Health v. Hellerstedt. Pro-lifers argued that not only was Hellerstedt wrongly decided but that Louisiana’s situation is different from that of Texas anyway, including that most Louisiana hospitals don’t have the Texas requirement that doctors must see a minimum number of patients per year to qualify for admitting privileges.

“Louisiana abortion providers have a record of non-compliance with basic safety regulations, and now they want a special exemption from generally-accepted medical standards that apply to similar surgical procedures in our State,” Louisiana Attorney General Jeff Landry declared in March. “Women seeking abortions deserve better than that; they should have the same assurance of prompt and proper care in the event of complications.”

The case garnered significant national attention and involvement with the Trump administration and various pro-life organizations filing numerous amicus briefs backing Louisiana. 

Liberal Justice Stephen Breyer wrote the majority opinion, which held that the Louisiana law was unconstitutional for the simple fact that it was “almost word-for-word identical” to the Texas one the court already struck down in 2016. He cited the lower court’s determination that the Louisiana law “offers no signficant health benefit,” but “places a substantial obstacle in the path of women seeking abortion,” and “will continue to make it impossible for abortion providers to obtain conforming privileges for reasons that have nothing to do with the State's asserted interests in promoting women's health and safety.”

In his concurring opinion, Chief Justice Roberts acknowledged that he had “joined the dissent in Whole Woman’s Health and continue to believe that the case was wrongly decided. The question today however is not whether Whole Woman’s Health was right or wrong, but whether to adhere to it in deciding the present case.”

Roberts invoked the legal doctrine of stare decisis, a controversial theory that claims past opinions gain legal weight simply by virtue of how long they last, regardless of how faithfully they reflect the law or the Constitution. That doctrine “requires us, absent special circumstances, to treat like cases alike. The Louisiana law imposes a burden on access to abortion just as severe as that imposed by the Texas law, for the same reasons. Therefore Louisiana’s law cannot stand under our precedents.”

Justices Clarence Thomas, Sameul Alito, Neil Gorscuh, and Brett Kavanaugh all dissented, with Thomas asserting the challenge to the law should have been rejected for the simple fact that the abortionists in question had no legal standing to bring it in the first place. “Today a majority of the Court perpetuates its ill-founded abortion jurisprudence by enjoining a perfectly legitimate state law and doing so without jurisdiction,” Thomas wrote.

“The plurality concludes that the Louisiana law does nothing to protect the health of women, but that is disproved by substantial evidence in the record,” Alito wrote. “And the plurality upholds the District Court’s finding that the Louisiana law would cause a drastic reduction in the number of abortion providers in the State even though this finding was based on an erroneous legal standard and a thoroughly inadequate factual inquiry.”

“Both the plurality and the Chief Justice hold that abortion providers can invoke a woman’s abortion right when they attack state laws that are enacted to protect a woman’s health,” Alito continued. “Neither waiver nor stare decisis can justify this holding, which clashes with our general rule on third-party standing. And the idea that a regulated party can invoke the right of a third party for the purpose of attacking legislation enacted to protect the third party is stunning. Given the apparent conflict of interest, that concept would be rejected out of hand in a case not involving abortion.”

Monday’s ruling means a reprieve for Louisiana’s three abortion facilities and the preservation of a major obstacle to other states regulatinig the abortion industry. It also means the court missed an opportunity to make a broader determination on the underlying legitimacy of Roe v. Wade and Planned Parenthood v. Casey, which force all 50 states to permit most abortions. 

In January, more than 200 members of Congress signed a brief urging the court to use the case as an occasion to reconsider Roe. The ruling is largely defended not on its legal merits (numerous pro-abortion legal minds, including Ginsburg herself, have acknowledged the ruling’s flaws), but on its status as precedent, with the contemporary interpretation of the stare decisis doctrine holding that Roe’s lengthy history staying on the books grants it added weight. Thomas has forcefully rejected such arguments.

“We are disappointed that SCOTUS continues to protect the practices of abortion providers at the expense of women’s wellbeing,” National Institute of Family and Life Advocates (NIFLA) attorney Angie Thomas reacted in a statement. “Louisiana abortion providers have an alarming and dangerous record of substandard healthcare—including botched abortions and failure to satisfy basic sanitary requirements. Unfortunately, this ruling will allow the abortion industry to continue to put profits before patients.”

“Women were dealt a huge blow in today’s ruling from the Supreme Court,” pro-life activist and former abortion insider Abby Johnson added. “By deciding that abortion doctors and clinics need to follow a separate, less stringent set of rules than every other medical facility leaves women open to the consequences of an industry that has mastered cutting corners on healthcare. Most any state health department report on their local abortion clinics will more than likely have repulsive citations that should make any woman question walking inside those doors. Things like rusty equipment, the use of expired medications, tears in surgery and exam tables, holes in floors where rodents can slip inside are all fairly common citations, which would shut down most restaurants and medical facilities –unless they were abortion clinics.”

Susan B. Anthony List President Marjorie Dannenfelser called the ruling a “bitter disappointment.”

Monday’s ruling marks the third time Roberts, a highly-controversial Republican appointee, has angered social conservatives in June, following his joining the liberal justices in writing homosexuality and transgenderism into “sex discrimination” and in upholding California’s COVID-19 restrictions on religious assembly. The fact that he applied a precedent he himself rejected just four years earlier, solely on the basis of stare decisis, strongly suggests he is all but certain to support the 47-year-old Roe v. Wade on the same basis.

On the other hand, Gorsuch and Kavanaugh joining the conservative dissenters may help reassure social conservatives going into the 2020 election that, despite Gorsuch joining Roberts and the liberals on the LGBT ruling, President Donald Trump’s judicial nominees have still made and would continue to make a critical difference compared to the nominees of former Vice President Joe Biden.


  abortion, abortion clinic regulations, admitting privileges, june medical services llc v. russo, louisiana, supreme court

Opinion

How faithful Catholics should respond to a world of strife, upheaval, and danger

As a Catholic in the U.S. striving to be faithful, it can seem like a depressing time to be alive. How would the saints respond if they walked the earth today?
Mon Jun 29, 2020 - 4:57 pm EST
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Paul M. Jonna
By

June 29, 2020 (LifeSiteNews) — As a Catholic in the U.S. today striving to be faithful, it can seem like a depressing time to be alive. With the coronavirus pandemic and resulting economic impact, the riots and violence gripping the nation, and the overall division within our country and even our own Church, it can be a temptation to fall into despair.

But are these times really that much worse than other challenging times in history? How would the saints respond if they walked the earth today?

There is no doubt that God put us here — at this time in history — for a reason, and we should all prayerfully discern our personal response in these turbulent times. There are, however, some core practices that apply across the board. The list below is one I developed for myself, and I thought it might benefit others as well.

1. Love your family more. Now, more than ever, we should recommit ourselves to our families. Love is an act of the will. It takes effort and discipline. We should practice patience and bite our tongues. We should put away our phones and spend quality time with our loved ones. News and social media can easily overwhelm us and cause anxiety and despair. Sometimes it’s better to just turn them off and be present — physically and emotionally — with those who matter most. After all, how can we be a shining light in this dark and broken world, as Christ instructed, without first loving and forgiving those closest to us — our spouses, children, parents, siblings, and extended family?

2. Love your neighbors more. We can’t flip a switch and fix the brokenness in our society. The traditional family is under blistering assault by dark forces that want to destroy truth, beauty, and goodness — and reshape society. Countless unborn babies — precious and unique human lives — are still being murdered in their mothers’ wombs every year in the U.S. These are complex issues that require complex solutions. But that doesn’t mean we don’t have a role to play. We should harness our God-given power to solve these problems in our own circles by small but consistent acts of charity toward our neighbors. We must remember that every person is made in the image and likeness of God, that God can transform the hearts of even the worst sinners, and that even one small act of love can transform a soul. If Christians across the world regularly and sincerely used their God-given power, grounded in love, many souls would be saved, and many problems would be solved.

3. Defend the Truth. Loving your neighbor never involves compromising the Truth; that would be a false love. On June 22, we celebrated the feast day of St. Thomas More, a martyr for Truth and the patron saint of lawyers. He died — as all martyrs do — because he realized that the Truth is worth dying for. In his case, he died defending the Truth regarding the indissolubility of marriage and papal authority in the Catholic Church. He put these truths over his own physical well-being (as he was ultimately beheaded) — because he recognized that his eternal soul was at stake. The example he set no doubt saved countless other souls as well. The Truth is constantly under attack by the enemy. Things we know are evil are being called good, and things we know are good and true are being called evil. Government officials and even Church officials have failed to defend the Truth and, in many cases, have worked to dismantle it. We are called to defend the Truth at all costs — even when it means risking our jobs, our reputations, and even our lives. Truth is under attack, and we should consider to what extent God put us here to defend it.

4. Vote. It’s no secret that the radical left in the U.S. is actively working to dismantle the traditional family and reshape society as we know it. Leftists are advocating, at every level, for the systematic murder of the unborn, so-called “gay marriage,” a complete rejection of the concept of biological sex, and much more. The radical left is organized and militant and is seeking to destroy anyone who dares to question the regimen leftists seek to impose on society. They are fighting tirelessly to destroy religious liberty and many of the values that our country was founded upon. Entire treatises can be written on this subject, but the point here is that our vote matters profoundly. If Catholics across the U.S. committed to voting for candidates who actually shared their values, blue states would turn to red states, and order would be restored through strong and solid leadership. The problem is that many Catholics don’t understand their faith and, consequently, don’t understand why it’s worth fighting to preserve. Those of us who do must exercise our constitutional rights to vote, to encourage others to vote, and even to prayerfully consider running for office. In the end, however, we must remember that God is in control and that no politician is our savior. We must trust God, but we must also use our talents and intellect to advocate for a just society that is pleasing to God.

5. Avoid sin and frequent the sacraments. As Aristotle said, “I count him braver who overcomes his desires than him who conquers his enemies, for the hardest victory is over self.” We should engage in a daily battle to conquer sin. Fight the devil at every turn, resist temptation, and stay close to God. We should regularly confess our sins and seek to cultivate virtues. Church politics can be distracting and depressing. It’s important to know what’s going on in the hierarchy of church, but sometimes it can be overwhelming — particularly since there is not much that we, as lay faithful, can do to change it. Find a good church led by a solid priest, and make that your parish — even if it means driving three times as far as the closest church. Sacraments are essential to salvation — regardless of what the governor or county health director thinks.

6. Begin your day with a holy hour and mental prayer. Starting your day with a holy hour will change your life. It takes time and discipline to work this into your schedule, but it can pay eternal dividends. Some of that time can be spent in vocal prayer, reading Scripture, or reading spiritual books, but at least fifteen or twenty minutes should ideally be reserved for mental prayer. Many saints have taught that regular mental prayer is necessary for the salvation of our souls. For example, St. Alphonsus Liguori teaches that “[s]hort of a miracle, a man who does not practice mental prayer will end up in mortal sin.” St. Vincent de Paul tell us, “A man without mental prayer is not good for anything; he cannot even renounce the slightest thing. It is merely the life of an animal.” St. Teresa is quoted as going even farther:

Without mental prayer a person soon becomes either a brute or a devil. If you do not practice mental prayer, you don’t need any devil to throw you into hell, you throw yourself in there of your own accord. On the contrary, give me the greatest of all sinners; if he practices mental prayer, be it only for fifteen minutes every day, he will be converted. If he perseveres in it, his eternal salvation is assured.

A regular holy hour will give us direction, keep us grounded, and keep our minds and hearts close to God. As explained in detail in The Soul of the Apostolate by Jean-Baptiste Chautard, focusing on the interior life will lead us to regularly ask, “Quo vadam et ad quid?” Where am I going and why? Mental prayer will help us understand what Jesus would do in our place, how He would act, what advice He would give us, and what He wants from us during these difficult times.

7. Keep your end in mind. Many theologians and biblical scholars have questioned how much more God will tolerate and whether these could be the end times. Many prophecies, apparitions, and even the Book of Revelation help shed light on our current circumstances. Regardless, we should always assume that the end is near — because it is (our personal end, at least). The only thing we control is this present moment. The past is gone, and the future may never come. We should treat each day as though it were truly our last. We should not live in fear. After all, as one faithful priest recently explained, nowhere in the Bible does it say to “stay safe” — as we commonly hear these days. But the Bible repeatedly reminds us to “be not afraid.” As Jesus said in the Book of Matthew, “do not be afraid of those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul; rather, be afraid of the one who can destroy both soul and body in Gehenna.” We should have a healthy fear of God by growing in charity and avoiding sin.

In sum, these times present many challenges but also many opportunities for sanctification. We are not all called to “fight the culture war” through politics and the courts. Some are, but many are not. But we are all called to be saints; we are called to be faithful; we are all called to know and love and defend the Truth; and we are all called to love God with our whole heart, our whole mind, and our whole soul, and to love our neighbors as ourselves.

In the end, the most important aim is to save our souls and to bring as many other people as we can to Christ. We should try to improve our society in the process, but we should not be discouraged if we fall short in this life. Ultimately, we know that God is in control and that “all things work for good for those who love God.” And as Saint Teresa of Calcutta wisely said, “We are not called to be successful; we are called to be faithful.”

Paul M. Jonna is a partner with LiMandri & Jonna LLP, a civil litigation practice based in Rancho Santa Fe, CA. Mr. Jonna also handles constitutional litigation, defending religious liberty and First Amendment rights, including current cases representing David Daleiden, Cathy Miller of Tastries Bakery, Stephen Brady of Roman Catholic Faithful, Children of the Immaculate Heart, and Timothy Gordon.


  catholic, holy hour, prayer, sacraments

Blogs

Porn star charged with rape, faces 90 years in prison

Those familiar with the porn industry will not be surprised by these allegations. Rape and other forms of sexual brutality have long been the porn industry’s open secret.
Mon Jun 29, 2020 - 6:42 pm EST
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Ron Jeremy appears for arraignment on rape and sexual assault charges at Clara Shortridge Foltz Criminal Justice Center on June 26, 2020 in Los Angeles, California. The 67-year-old defendant could face up to 90 years to life in state prison if convicted as charged. Photo by David McNew / Getty Images
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By Jonathon Van Maren

June 29, 2020 (LifeSiteNews) – In one of the least surprising stories of 2020, it turns out that an industry that makes its millions trafficking in rape, sexual torture, and the degradation of women has produced yet another sexual predator. The 67-year-old Ron Jeremy, one of the world’s most famous porn stars, has been formally charged with one count of forcible oral copulation and sexual battery, and three counts of forcible rape and forcible penetration with a foreign object. In total, he has been accused of sexually assaulting one woman and raping three others. Jeremy, whose real name is Ronald Jeremy Hyatt, pleaded not guilty to all crimes on June 27 in a Los Angeles courtroom.

The allegations against Jeremy are ugly. According to prosecutors, the aging porn star is a serial predator, having raped a 25-year-old woman at a home in West Hollywood in May 2014, and perpetrating two sexual assaults—one against a 46-year-old woman, and another against a 33-year-old woman—at a bar in the same area in 2017. He is also accused of raping a 30-year-old woman at the same West Hollywood bar in July of 2019. Jeremy claims through his attorney Stuart Goldfarb that he is “absolutely innocent of the charges,” and faces up to 90 years in prison if convicted. LA County sheriff’s detectives say they have been investigating allegations against Jeremy for two years. 

Jeremy, who appeared in court last Friday in an orange jumpsuit, also took to Twitter to defend himself, claiming that “I am innocent of all charges. I can’t wait to prove my innocence in court! Thank you to everyone for all the support.” His next court hearing is scheduled for August 31, and a judge set his bail at $6.6 million. According to the district attorney’s office, the investigation into Ron Jeremy is ongoing, and one case, from 2016, has already been declined by prosecutor’s for lack of evidence. 

More may be coming. As anti-porn activist Laila Mickelwait observed on Twitter: “Ron Jeremy was charged with raping and sexually assaulting multiple women. He also has almost 600 videos under his Pornhub ‘pornstar’ profile. How many of them are actually rape crime [scenes]? How much money did Pornhub make off of this rapist?”

Those familiar with the porn industry will not be surprised by these allegations. Rape and other forms of sexual brutality have long been the porn industry’s open secret. A few years ago, porn performer James Deen was also accused of a string of sexual assaults, and he openly defended his vicious slapping of one girl during a sex scene as par for the course on porn sets. Violence against women is not a by-product of porn. These days, it is often the point of porn. According to one major porn producer: “The future of American porn is pain.” 

The porn industry often attempts to defend itself by trotting out spokespeople to assure everyone that the women getting beaten up, tortured, and degraded are just fine and enjoying it all. Six years ago, the 18-year-old Miriam Weeks aka “Belle Knox” went on CNN, assuring everyone that porn was “feminist” and “empowering” and “the way the world should be.” Shortly thereafter, when a video emerged of the slender teenager getting slapped across the face, choked by a muscular male, and called vile names, Weeks admitted that the porn industry isn’t all that it’s cracked up to be.

“The sex industry has a way of making you very cynical and very bitter,” a tired-looking Weeks told one interviewer, “In a way I’ve started to become kind of a bit bitter and a bit cynical. It teaches you to be street smart and not to trust people…I’m so used to being on the lookout for scammers, people who are going to try [to] pimp me out or traffic me. I think my experiences have aged me. I don’t have the mind of an eighteen-year-old. I have the emotional baggage of someone much, much older than me.”

It is a fact that our culture consumes, for entertainment and sexual pleasure, pornographic images of women and girls being physically destroyed on-screen. Our young boys are growing up with a taste for rape and female pain, and this is twisting them in horrible ways. The allegations against Ron Jeremy are not surprising. It would only be surprising if there were not many, many more just like him—and scores of imitators in bedrooms across the continent, seeking to act out what they have been weaned on since puberty. 

Jonathon’s new podcast, The Van Maren Show, is dedicated to telling the stories of the pro-life and pro-family movement. In his latest episode, he interviews famed Chesterton scholar and founder of the Chesterton society and the Chesterton schools, Dale Ahlquist. They discusss what G.K. Chesterton would think of the riots happening in the United States and the current state of the world.

You can subscribe here and listen to the episode below:


  pornography, rape, ron jeremy

Blogs

Planned Parenthood burns American flag to protest ban on aborting babies with heartbeats

Progressives may be pushing for a second American revolution, but their primary loyalty is to the sexual revolution.
Mon Jun 29, 2020 - 2:01 pm EST
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Planned Parenthood Advocates of Tennessee / Twitter video
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By Jonathon Van Maren

June 29, 2020 (LifeSiteNews) – These days it feels as if the Overton Window is moving at such warp speed that you can actually hear it sliding. State governments have placed their own citizens under house arrest, promptly made exceptions for riots and protests, and now statue-smashing has moved from Robert E. Lee to Ulysses S. Grant and from Jefferson Davis to Abraham Lincoln. America is getting a makeover, and those performing the surgery are wielding butcher knives rather than scalpels.

And now Planned Parenthood, which despite its racist roots has thus far survived the woke purges due to the fact that they provide much-needed abortions, is getting in on the action. Hitching their wagon to other progressive causes in order to secure a place on the woke platform has always been one of their primary strategies, but now, of course, a blood-glutted corporation that has caused more black deaths than any organization in America (the KKK included) is attempting to join the new revolution.

On June 25, for example, Tennessee Advocates for Planned Parenthood posted a video to Twitter of one of their protests. Governor Bill Lee recently signed a ban on abortion after the fetal heartbeat can be detected, and naturally abortion activists are outraged by this. Thus, presided over by a woman dressed up as the Statue of Liberty (but serving, in this context, as American Moloch) and attended by a handful of protestors, some featuring the red dress uniform of the Radical Handmaids, the abortion activists burned an upside-down American flag and lowered the burning Stars and Stripes into a trash can.

The activist doing the ceremonial flag-burning was dressed as Governor Lee. “Gov. Bill Lee has disrespected our constitution and practically lit the flag on fire by banning abortion,” Tennessee Advocates for Planned Parenthood tweeted. “But we won’t stop until we live in a new America that respects the rights of pregnant people. Full stop.” They added helpfully:

A quote from the skit for more context: “This is our constitution. I think it is garbage. This is nothing more than a just piece of paper to me, which is why I introduced the unconstitutional abortion ban in the first place."

Abortion activists burning the U.S. Constitution is a bit on the nose, but the irony of it all appeared to be lost on the flag-burners. In the “new America” abortion activists are demanding, the right to be rid of your children reigns supreme, reducing the right to life to the arbitrary whim of the mother. These mothers, incidentally, make up Planned Parenthood’s clientele. Never in the history of the Left have so-called progressives been so utterly unsuspicious of an enormous corporation posing as a revolutionary ally. Not so very long ago, corporations were the enemy. Now, things have flipped as the corporations have become woke and begun to agitate for the abortion industry and frantically wave the rainbow flag in an effort to ingratiate themselves with the mob.

It is noteworthy that recent Planned Parenthood scandals have fizzled. You probably didn’t hear, for example, that 300 people signed an “Open Letter” calling for the removal of Laura McQuade, the president and CEO of Planned Parenthood of Greater New York. According to the Kansas Star, McQuade is being “accused by her current and former staff of abusive behavior, systemic racism and financial mismanagement.” The letter alleges that “in her two-and-a-half year tenure, McQuade has created a culture of fear and intimidation; we have witnessed her cull dissenters and surround herself with enablers.” The letter went on to accuse her of “abusive behavior.” Others had accused her of racial discrimination. According to Jezebel:

On Tuesday, the board of Planned Parenthood Greater New York announced that they had “parted ways” with McQuade, news that came after a largely internal staff organizing effort spilled out into the public. Staff concerns against McQuade included accusations of racism and bullying, as well as charges that she had instituted a revenue-driven, assembly-line approach to PPGNY clinics–one that put patients, and in particular Black and other patients of color, at potential risk. 

Interestingly, many employees and activists noted that this sort of behavior often doesn’t get reported—or gets ignored or hushed up—simply because nobody wants to hurt abortion “rights.” Abortion is the progressive sacrament, abortion must be protected, and if that means dealing with toxic racists and awful work conditions, so be it. It must be done. For abortion. 

Progressives may be pushing for a second American revolution, but their primary loyalty is to the sexual revolution. And for the sexual revolution to be possible, it is essential to have exterminators on hand to eliminate the babies that are naturally produced by the baby-making act. Planned Parenthood does that like nobody else, to the tune of several hundred thousand baby corpses per year. Their deal with the woke Left is sealed in blood.

For that, progressives will let them get away with murder.


  abortion, heartbeat bill, heartbeat law, planned parenthood, tennessee

Blogs

Supreme Court strikes down another common sense pro-life law. What now?

Today's ruling clearly shows that John Roberts issues decisions based on politics, which is not an appropriate way to rule on cases that come before the Supreme Court.
Mon Jun 29, 2020 - 1:08 pm EST
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Chip Somodevilla / Getty Images
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By Jonathon Van Maren

PETITION: Tell Trump Christians can’t accept SCOTUS ruling imposing LGBT ideology! Sign the petition here.

June 29, 2020 (LifeSiteNews) – In what is turning out to be a devastating term for social conservatives, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in a 5-4 decision to overturn a Louisiana law requiring abortionists to have admitting privileges at nearby hospitals. Chief Justice John Roberts, who has frequently voted pro-life in the past, joined the liberal justices in their decision. To analyze the ruling, I contacted Dr. Michael New, an expert in abortion statistics serving as an associate scholar at the Charles Lozier Institute and a visiting assistant professor at the Catholic University of America. Here is what he told me.

What does this ruling mean for the pro-life movement?

Today's ruling is certainly a disappointment and a setback for pro-lifers. It is very troubling that the Supreme Court decided to strike down a set of common-sense abortion facility regulations enacted by the state of Louisiana. Since the Supreme Court struck down a set of clinic regulations enacted in Texas in Whole Woman's Health v. Hellerstedt in 2016 – this the second time in four years, abortion facility regulations have been struck down the U.S. Supreme Court.

That said, pro-lifers should not despair. According to the Guttmacher Institute, over 400 state level pro-life laws have been enacted since 2010. The Supreme Court will likely decide to hear the constitutionality of some of these laws in the near future. It is certainly possible that there might be five votes on the U.S. Supreme Court to uphold some of these protective state level pro-life laws.

Furthermore, many trends are positive for pro-lifers. The number of abortion facilities has declined by nearly two-thirds since the early 1990s. Since the late 1980s, the number of organizations devoted to pregnant women has increased by over 80 percent. Pro-lifers have made some very durable long-term gains in the court of public opinion. Most importantly the U.S abortion rate has declined by over 50 percent since 1980. An important reason for this decline is because a higher percentage of unintended pregnancies are being carried to term. This nicely shows that pro-life educational, service, and legislative efforts have all been effective.

What does this ruling mean for Roe v. Wade?

To be honest, I do not think this decision tells us much about the long-term future of Roe v. Wade. This particular case was not intended to present a direct challenge to Roe v. Wade. Furthermore, a dramatic reversal of Roe v. Wade is not a likely short-term outcome. A more likely outcome is that the Supreme Court will issue decisions in the future that will allow states to do more to regulate abortion and protect unborn children.

Why do you think Roberts voted the way that he did, considering his pro-life credentials?

Today's ruling clearly shows that John Roberts issues decisions based on politics. It makes absolutely no sense that he would vote to uphold the Texas abortion facility regulations in Whole Woman's Health v. Hellerstedt in 2016 and strike down the Louisiana abortion facility regulations in June Medical Servces v. Russo. The only difference is that in the Louisiana case his vote was pivotal.

Roberts is attempting to make the Supreme Court appear less partisan. He appears to dislike high profile rulings where it appears that [the] justices are issuing opinions based on partisan lines. That said, that is not an appropriate way to rule on cases that come before the Supreme Court. Roberts needs to issue opinions based on the U.S. Constitution. He should neither be concerned with how pundits view the court nor the resulting political fallout.

Do you think this ruling damages the legal standing of the pro-life movement?

I do not think this ruling damages the legal standing of the pro-life movement as such. In fact, I think a reasonable case could be made for continuing with the same legislative and political strategy.

In today's decision, Justices Gorsuch and Kavanaugh voted to uphold the Louisiana clinic regulations. In 2016, in Whole Woman's Health v. Hellerstedt, Justice Roberts voted to uphold the Texas clinic regulations. As such, there could be five votes on the U.S. Supreme Court to uphold future pro-life laws.

That said, I do think that pro-life groups and pro-life leaders will start to more seriously consider alternative legislative and political approaches. Since the early 1980s, beltway pro-life groups have engaged a rough consensus about how to proceed. At the federal level, we push for defunding abortion, incremental laws that can help shape public opinion, and Supreme Court justices who will be likely to overturn Roe v. Wade. At the state level, the goal is to push for progressively stronger incremental laws, hoping that one of these laws will pose a strong legal challenge to the Supreme Court’s ruling in Casey v. Planned Parenthood.

However, after today's ruling, some alternative approaches will probably receive more consideration. For instance, one alternative idea that has been considered in pro-life academic and legal circles is enacting federal legislation under Section Five of the 14th Amendment, that would restore legal protection for unborn children. This proposal was brought up by Princeton Professor Robert P. George during a Republican Presidential debate in South Carolina in 2011. Several Republican Presidential candidates were receptive to the idea.

Another idea, that has been considered in conservative legal circles is jurisdiction stripping – removing the ability of federal courts to hear cases that involve abortion. That said, if the pro-life movement decides to shift strategies, unity will be extremely important. Internal debates over how to draft a human life amendment to the U.S. Constitution during the 1970s and early 1980s did a great deal of damage to the pro-life cause. Pro-lifers certainly do not want to go through something similar again.

How should pro-lifers respond to this ruling?

Pro-lifers should not give up hope! As we continue our efforts to build a culture of life we will inevitably encounter some setbacks. There will be court decisions that strike down pro-life laws. There will be elections where pro-life candidates lose. However, our long term efforts are bearing fruit and we should not forget that.

Jonathon’s new podcast, The Van Maren Show, is dedicated to telling the stories of the pro-life and pro-family movement. In his latest episode, he interviews famed Chesterton scholar and founder of the Chesterton society and the Chesterton schools, Dale Ahlquist. They discusss what G.K. Chesterton would think of the riots happening in the United States and the current state of the world.

You can subscribe here and listen to the episode below:

 


  abortion, john roberts, michael new, supreme court

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Episodes Mon Jun 29, 2020 - 3:14 pm EST

The history behind receiving communion in the hand

By Mother Miriam
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Watch Mother Miriam's Live aired on 6.29.2020. In today’s episode, Mother shares the remainder of John-Henry Westen's recent podcast focusing on Holy Communion. In today's episode Mother reviews the history of the receiving Holy Communion on the hand. 

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