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By John-Henry Westen

WASHINGTON, October 1, 2009 (LifeSiteNews.com) – In a statement to mark Respect Life Sunday, October 4, Cardinal Justin Rigali of Philadelphia said: “Since the advent of widespread contraception and abortion, a cultural hostility to children has grown.” Children, he said, “are often depicted as costly encumbrances who interfere with a carefree adult life.”  In response, however, he pointed out that: “In fact, if married couples were to have more children, Medicare and Social Security would not be hurtling toward bankruptcy.”

Cardinal Rigali, who chairs the Committee on Pro-Life Activities of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB), referred to abortion as “killing,” and decried the funding of abortion in Obama's healthcare overhaul. “Despite the opposition of 67% of Americans to taxpayer-funded abortion, all current health care proposals being considered by Congress would allow or mandate abortion funding, either through premiums paid into government programs or out of federal revenues,” he said.

“It bears repeating: Abortion – the direct, intentional killing of an unborn girl or boy – is not health care,” he added. “Abortion robs an innocent child of his or her life, and robs mothers of their peace and happiness. Abortion funding can only increase the number of dead and grieving.”

Of note, Cardinal Rigali said, “It should not be surprising that the neglect, and even the death, of some people are offered as a solution to rising health care costs. Population control advocates have long espoused aborting children in the developing world as a misguided means for reducing poverty.”

He added: “Some environmentalists now claim that the most efficient way to curb global climate change is to make 'family planning' more widely available in the developing world.”  He warned also that “as used by population control advocates, the innocuous term 'family planning' includes abortifacient contraceptives, sterilization, and manual vacuum aspiration abortions.”

The Cardinal expanded upon the dire consequences for social security of having fewer children. “Since 1955, because of fewer children and longer life spans, the number of workers has declined relative to the number of beneficiaries, from 8.6 to only 3.1 workers paying benefits to support each beneficiary,” he explained.  “Without substantially more young people to enter the work force as young adults, in 25 years, there will be only 2.1 workers supporting each beneficiary.” 

Driving home the point he said, “Eliminating our young does not solve problems even on pragmatic grounds. It adds to them.”

He concluded: “Death is not a solution to life's problems. Only those who are blind to the transcendent reality and meaning of human life could support killing human beings to mitigate economic, social or environmental problems.”

To read the complete statement, click here.

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