Australia doubles budget for contraception and abortion in the Third World
SYDNEY, Australia, July 23, 2012 (LifeSiteNews.com) - Australia will double annual funding for “family planning services” in developing countries to $50 million AUD by 2016.
The increase was announced at last week’s Family Planning Summit in London by Peter Baxter, the Director of AusAID - the government agency responsible for managing Australia’s overseas aid programme.
From Cambodia, Australian Foreign Minister Bob Carr affirmed the increase, saying: “Women have a basic right to reproductive health care… to decide whether, when and how many children they have.”
The increased spending will go to the United Nations Population Fund (about $70 million over four years), while an extra $10 million will go to the International Planned Parenthood Federation, in particular their SPRINT program, “to ensure people caught in disasters can gain access to reproductive health services.”
In Papua New Guinea, an extra 500 midwives will be trained in “the provision of family planning services”, and a national key-hole vasectomy centre will be built in the Eastern Highlands.
An AusAID spokesperson could not provide more detail about exactly how the increased funding would be spent.
Australia’s aid policy was adjusted in 2009 to allow for abortions by then Foreign Minister Stephen Smith, after which time family planning funding increased from roughly $2 million a year to $26 million in 2010.
The new policy guidelines include “making the prevention of unwanted pregnancies the highest priority, with every attempt being made to minimise the need for abortion,” and prohibiting abortions over 20-weeks gestation.
Nonetheless, in June last year it was revealed in Senate Budget Estimates that AusAID now funds medical and surgical abortions through the IPFF in Albania, Armenia, Bangladesh, Barbados, Belize, Benin, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Colombia, The Democratic Republic of Congo, Cuba, Ethiopia, Georgia, Ghana, India, Indonesia, Mexico, Mongolia, Mozambique, Nepal, Nigeria, Pakistan, Sierra Leone, Sudan, Thailand, Togo, Uganda, Vietnam and Zambia.
AusAID also partners with Marie Stopes International in Myanmar, Papua New Guinea and East Timor, where all together the abortion giant estimates it averted around 21,000 ‘unsafe abortions’ in 2011.
Peter Westmore, the President of the National Civic Council, said: “With regard to developing countries, we know that a large part of the funding for family planning - which is simply a euphemism for reducing the number of children that are born - goes towards abortions.”
“This funding contradicts Australia’s obligations under the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, to respect human life. It is a repudiation of Australia’s International Human Rights commitments. And the funding will damage the countries towards which it is directed, because it will discourage the formation of families.”
The chief executive of CARE Australia, Julia Newton-Howes, told the Sydney Morning Herald that the doubling of aid was a “terrific outcome” but that the funding should be monitored to ensure it went to sexual and reproductive health programs, rather than child immunisation programs: “If a child’s mother dies in childbirth that is a worse outcome, and having ten siblings is not a good outcome, either.”
Speaking at the Family Planning Conference, Mr. Baxter estimated that one in five pregnancies in Indonesia were thought to be ‘unwanted or mistimed’, and only one in five women in Papua New Guinea used modern contraceptives. Altogether he estimated that 26 million women across south-east Asia and the Pacific wanted to use modern contraceptives but had no access to them.
In a press release published the same day, AusAID stated: “Apart from the life-saving implications of having fewer children, the economic benefits of a smaller family are also significant. Fewer mouths to feed mean incomes go further.”
During the Family Planning Summit, Australia also volunteered to be part of .6 billion fundraising efforts to provide contraception to the world’s poorest women.
On Saturday, the Parliamentary Secretary for Foreign Affairs Robert Marles stated that the number of Ethiopian women using contraceptives doubled between 2005 and 2011, partly due to Australia’s $43-million aid contribution.
Australia is a signatory of the 1994 International Conference on Population and Development and a member of the Alliance for Reproductive Maternal and Newborn Health.
Please, enough with the cult of pop stars. Our kids need real heroes.
April 29, 2016 (LifeSiteNews) – Two things happen each time a significant pop culture figure dies: Christians attempt to dredge up some moderately conservative or traditional thing that figure said at some point during his long career, and mainstream media attempts to convince a society thoroughly bored with such things that the person in question was a ground-breaking radical. The two most recent examples are the androgynous David Bowie—a cringe-worthy and possibly blasphemous video of him dropping to his knees during a rock performance and uttering the Lord’s Prayer circulated just following his death--and the pop star Prince.
I’ve had to suppress my gag reflexes many times as I saw my Facebook newsfeed fill up with memes sporting quotes from Prince about his faith and articles announcing that the musician who “embraced gender fluidity before his time,” according to Slate and “will always be a gay icon” according to The Atlantic, was against gay marriage. Sure, maybe he was. But only a Christian community so shell-shocked by the rapid spread of the rainbow blitzkrieg and the catastrophic erosion of religious liberty would find this remarkable. After all, Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton said the same thing barely one election cycle ago. As one obituary celebrating Prince’s paradigm-smashing sexual performances written by Dodai Stewart put it:
Dig, if you will, a picture: The year is 1980. Many states still have sodomy laws. The radio is playing feel-good ear candy like Captain and Tennille and KC and the Sunshine Band. TV hits include the sunny, toothy blond shows Three’s Company and Happy Days. There’s no real word for “gender non-conforming.” But here’s what you see: A man. Clearly a man. Hairy, mostly naked body…a satiny bikini bottom. But those eyes. Rimmed in black, like a fantasy belly dancer. The full, pouty lips of a pin-up girl. Long hair. A tiny, svelte thing. Ethnically ambiguous, radiating lust. What is this? A man. Clearly a man. No. Not just a man. A Prince.
Right. So let’s not get too carried away, shall we? I know Christians are desperate to justify their addictions to the pop culture trash that did so much to sweep away Christian values in the first place and I know that latching on to the occasional stray conservative belief that may manifest itself in pop culture figures makes many feel as if perhaps we are not so weird and countercultural, but this bad habit we have of claiming these figures upon their passing is downright damaging.
After all, parents should be teaching their children about real heroes, titans of the faith who changed the world. Heroes of the early church who stood down tyrants, halted gladiatorial combat, and crusaded against injustice in a world where death was all the rage. These men and women were real rebels who stood for real values. If we want to point our children to people they should emulate, we should be handing them books like Seven Men: And the Secret of Their Greatness by the brilliant writer Eric Metaxas rather than the pop albums Purple Rain or Lovesexy by Prince. If parents spend their time glorifying the predecessors of Lady Gaga and Miley Cyrus instead of highlighting heroes like William Wilberforce, they can hardly be surprised when their children choose to emulate the former rather than the latter.
The mainstream media’s adulation of these pop stars is equally irritating. The unspoken truth of these obituaries is that the flamboyant antics of Prince and the rest of the so-called rebellious drag queens populating the rock n’ roll scene have been mainstream for a long time already. Want to see dozens of bizarre body piercings? Weird hairdos? Purple mohawks? Dudes with nail polish? Strange tattoos? Easy. Just go onto any university campus, or any public high school without a dress code. With headphones wedged firmly in their ear canals, they can pump the cleverly commercialized “counterculture” straight into their skulls 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
More than that, some of these courageous rebels have actually sued their employers to ensure that they can let their establishment-smashing freak flag fly at work, too. An Edmonton woman with 22 visible body piercings complained that her employer was unfair because apparently she was being discriminated against “based on body modifications.” Yeah! The Man must be told, after all. And if he doesn’t agree, we will lawyer up. I wonder what the shrieking rebels of the early days would think about the snivelling children of the current grievance culture.
So these days, the media’s eulogizing about aging culture warriors who went mainstream a long time ago rings a bit hollow. After all, most rock n’ roll stars these days look tame compared to what shows up in the children’s section at Pride Week. Freaky is normal now. Normal is radical. Welcome to 2016.
When Christians are posting nostalgic tributes to the rebels who helped inoculate their children against the radical views of Christianity in the first place, you know that the victories of the counterculture are complete and Stockholm syndrome has set in.
Target boycott climbs to over 1 million
April 29, 2016 (LifeSiteNews) – Over 1 million people have signed a pledge to boycott Target over its new policy allowing men to access women’s bathrooms.
The American Family Association’s Boycott Target petition gained traction immediately, reaching the one million mark in only nine days.
“Corporate America must stop bullying people who disagree with the radical left agenda to remake society into their progressive image,” said AFA President Tim Wildmon. “#BoycottTarget has resonated with Americans. Target’s harmful policy poses a danger to women and children; nearly everyone has a mother, wife, daughter or friend who is put in jeopardy by this policy. Predators and voyeurs would take advantage of the policy to prey on those who are vulnerable. And it’s clear now that over one million customers agree.”
Target defended its policy in a statement saying that it believes everyone “deserves to be protected from discrimination, and treated equally” and earlier this week, a Target spokeswoman defended the policy as “inclusive.”
The AFA said that unisex bathrooms are a common-sense alternative to allowing men unfettered access to women’s bathrooms.
“Target should keep separate facilities for men and women, but for the trans community and for those who simply like using the bathroom alone, a single occupancy unisex option should be provided,” the petition says.
The AFA warned that Target’s new policy benefits sexual predators and poses a danger to women and children.
“With Target publicly boasting that men can enter women's bathrooms, where do you think predators are going to go?” the petition asked.
There have been numerous instances of predatory men accessing women’s bathrooms and intimate facilities in the wake of “transgender” bathroom policies allowing them to do so.
“We want to make it very clear that AFA does not believe the transgender community poses this danger to the wider public,” said Wildmon. “Rather, this misguided and reckless policy provides a possible gateway for predators who are out there.”
Amazing new video captures the flash of light the moment life begins
CHICAGO, April 29, 2016 (LifeSiteNews) – Life begins with a spark – literally.
Researchers at Northwestern University have documented the striking event in a new video that accompanies a study published this week.
At the moment of conception, the egg releases massive amounts of zinc, which creates a spark that can be seen with the aid of a microscope.
“It was remarkable,” said Teresa Woodruff, a professor of obstetrics and gynecology at Northwestern University's medical school. “To see the zinc radiate out in a burst from each human egg was breathtaking.”
The research team had noted the zinc sparks before in mice eggs but had never observed the process in human beings.
“All of biology starts at the time of fertilization,” Woodruff said, “yet we know next to nothing about the events that occur in the human.”
One of the researchers, Northwestern chemistry professor Thomas O'Halloran, explained the science behind the process in 2014.
“The egg first has to stockpile zinc and then must release some of the zinc to successfully navigate maturation, fertilization and the start of embryogenesis,” he said. “On cue, at the time of fertilization, we see the egg release thousands of packages, each dumping a million zinc atoms, and then it's quiet.”
“Each egg has four or five of these periodic sparks,” O'Halloran said. “It is beautiful to see, orchestrated much like a symphony.”
Since the amount of zinc in an egg correlates with successful implantation and birth, the Northwestern researchers are highlighting that their research may be used to assist in vitro fertilization.
But that raises concerns given the grave moral issues with IVF, which involves creating numerous embryos that are either killed or frozen. Moral theologians also emphasize that IVF is an injustice even for the children who are born as a result, as they are created in a lab rather than in the union of man and woman.
The study may have far-reaching consequences the research team did not intend, such as strengthening public belief in the longstanding scientific consensus that life begins at the moment of conception/fertilization.
Many of those who saw the Northwestern video said it testifies to the beauty of life and the shallow lies that buttress the argument of abortion-on-demand.
“I saw this, and I was blown away by it,” said Rush Limbaugh on his nationally syndicated radio program Thursday afternoon. “For anybody in the mainstream media to openly admit that life begins at conception” defies arguments that an unborn child is only “tissue mass.”
Researchers released a separate video of the zinc spark taking place in a mammalian egg more than a year ago:
The paper, which is entitled “The Zinc Spark is an Inorganic Signature of Human Egg Activation,” was published by Scientific Reports on April 26.