By Hilary White

  LONDON, February 22, 2007 ( – The National Director of the UK’s Society for the Protection of Unborn Children in a February 16 interview with Zenit Catholic news agency, denounced Prime Minister Tony Blair and Labour party policies that, he said, “have plunged Britain into an ethical abyss.”

  Smeaton told Zenit that among the first things Blair did when coming to power in 1997 was to implement a program of abortion and contraception for schoolgirls as young as 11 without parents’ knowledge or consent.

  Blair also brought forward discussion of laws surrounding end-of-life care that led to the 2005 Mental Capacity Act, set to come into force in April, that in some cases requires doctors to starve and dehydrate patients to death.

  Smeaton cited Britain’s overseas development aid as a means of “exporting” abortion-on-demand to developing nations under the Millennium Development Goals. He said the UK is also a major influence in the European Union in support of anti-life, anti-family policies.

“In general,” Smeaton said, “there is virtually no area of pro-life or pro-family ethical concern which has not been made worse by the Blair government.”

  The situation in the debate over bioethics, Smeaton said, is dire: “Britain has not only lost its moral compass. For the most part, it has also lost both the language and the capacity to think in a morally rational way.”

  A sharp turnaround by Britain’s religious leadership, he said, is the only hope for the country. He decried the Catholic Church’s “lack of clear teaching on culture of life issues” that has left children undefended in schools.

  He said, “More and more Catholic parents are approaching the Society for the Protection of Unborn Children with terrible experiences in Catholic schools, both at the secondary and primary school level. Protests on the part of Catholic parents and teachers seeking to protect young people do not appear to be heard.”

  The hope, he said, lies in the ability of Rome under the new Pontiff to appoint bishops who lead a turnaround and revive a morally serious public debate. With strong religious leadership lay-led organizations such as SPUC, will become more effective.

  Without it, Smeaton paints a bleak picture. With the legislation already passed such as the Mental Capacity Act, and the increasingly draconian laws regarding homosexuality, Smeaton said bluntly, “lay people who seek to defend life, marriage and the family may be imprisoned.”

  Health professionals who refuse to abort children, starve and dehydrate patients and prescribe contraceptive drugs, as well as teachers refusing to go along with the abortion programs in schools, “will become unemployable”.

  Smeaton warns that parents who teach their children traditional Christian morality “may have their children taken into care by the state.”

“Authentic moral values will be taught in secret or not at all,” Smeaton said.  


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