NewsBytes, June 13 - Life Issues
* Disclaimer: The linked items below or the websites at which they are located do not necessarily represent the views of LifeSiteNews.com. They are presented only for your information.
Compiled by Steve Jalsevac
Deutsche Bank On “One The Most Important (Future) Turning Points In History”
“the human race will no longer be replacing itself by the early 2020s. Population growth will continue for a few more decades because of momentum from the age structure and people living longer but, reproductively speaking, our species will no longer be growing.” And since global reproduction will not be net additive, it will be net subtractive… and on a long-enough timeline the world’s population will drop to zero…the Chinese are already far from replacing themselves while the Indians are only slightly above the replacement rate.
How the Boston archdiocese helped bring contraception to Massachusetts By Phil Lawler
In 1966, Massachusetts became the last state in the US to legalize the sale of contraceptives. When the state legislative voted to repeal the law prohibiting their sale, the Planned Parenthood League of Massachusetts celebrated—and said that the victory was due to the cooperation of the Boston Catholic archdiocese.
The full extent of India’s ‘gendercide’ - The Independent
The systematic elimination of female foetuses in the world’s biggest democracy is widening the gap between girls and boys and storing up social problems for the future. In some towns there is already a shortage of brides and there are fears the growing gender imbalance will worsen attitudes to women.
The New Pro-Life Surge - Christianity Today
Political gains by U.S. conservatives unleash waves of anti-abortion legislation.
The Oregon bill is one of 576 measures related to abortion that have been introduced so far in 2011 in 48 states
Pregnancy resource centers and praising God By Matt C. Abbott
She didn’t think her boyfriend would be there to support her and she didn’t want her baby to feel abandoned the way she had been by her own biological father. Yet, when she drove past the PP that same day, she saw people praying and it made a difference for her! She told me she realized she couldn’t abort.
Two movies with anti-abortion messages seek distribution - LA Times
Mainstream Hollywood rarely tackles the subject of abortion, and when it does, it’s usually when a character quietly opts not to have one. But two new independently financed movies — a small-town mystery and a psychological thriller — are bringing an emphatically anti-abortion slant to the hot-button issue.
Many Americans are able to be simultaneously pro-choice and pro-life. - USA Today
Nearly six in 10 (58%) of Americans say at least some health care professionals in their communities should provide legal abortions. Who opposes? White Evangelical Protestants and Latino Catholics, and people who live in rural communities.
Russian Lawmakers Prepare For Major Crackdown on Abortion - The Blaze
Russia‘s Orthodox Church teamed with Conservative parliamentarians Monday to push legislation that would radically restrict abortions in a nation struggling to cope with one of the world’s lowest birthrates.
Texas Law Will Require Sonograms Prior To Abortions
According to Reuters, most women will have to wait 24 hours after the ultrasound before they can have the abortion. Individuals who live more than 100 miles from an abortion provider will have a two-hour window between the sonogram and the procedure
N.J. Sen. Doherty slams Planned Parenthood hours before vote on bill to restore $7.5M to family planning clinics
“Nobody has any problem trying to have no affiliation with nefarious organizations such as the Nazis or apartheid regimes,” said Doherty, according to the New Jersey Star-Ledger. “But somehow, we’re asked to use our tax dollars to support these type of organizations.”
Anti-abortion groups raise stakes by deploying US tactics on UK streets - The Guardian
Protesters subject British clinics including Marie Stopes to prayer vigils and ‘silent sieges’
Fresyinger Likens abortion to going to the bathroom
Oskar Fresyinger told a right-wing French internet site that abortion has become a reflex for women. In an interview Freysinger said women “abort as if they were going to the bathroom.” The outspoken Swiss People’s Party member of parliament backs a proposed initiative to exclude abortion procedures from the basic health plan.
The National Right to Life Committee (NRLC), the federation of 50 state right-to-life affiliates, disputed claims earlier this week that restrictions on abortion “disproportionately affect” poor women.
Planned Parenthood Opens $8 Billion Abortionplex - The Onion (warning - this is a satire piece)
Planned Parenthood announced Tuesday the grand opening of its long-planned $8 billion Abortionplex, a sprawling abortion facility that will allow the organization to terminate unborn lives with an efficiency never before thought possible.
Peace Corps Georgia - Reproductive Health
Adolescent Sexual and Reproductive Health Advisor, London
Day of Action for Women’s Health!
You already know that these are scary times for those of us that support reproductive freedom and basic common sense measures like preventative health care for low-income women. But did you know that the NC Legislature has actually introduced 12 anti-choice bills this session? You can read about the “Dirty Dozen” here.
EUTHANASIA, PALLIATIVE CARE, ORGAN HARVESTING
Bloomberg Obit Tells Facts About Macabre Kevorkian by Wesley J. Smith
Read the entire Bloomberg obit. It is the best and most accurate I have seen.
Belgian Doctors Boast of Harvesting Organs After Euthanasia - Wesley J. Smith
I can think of few things that would undermine universal human equality than for society to think that killing despairing people with serious illnesses or disabilities could be a splendid means of incresasing the supply of transplant organs.
Belgian transplant surgeons use lungs from euthanased patients by Michael Cook
Using organs from euthanased patients seem to have become a well established procedure in Belgium, only nine years after it was legalized.
INVITRO, SURROGATES, EGG DONATIONS
Carolyn and Sean Savage of Toledo, Ohio always dreamed of having 4 children. They already had two sons, Drew and Ryan, when they discovered some fertility problems. They turned to In-vitro Fertilization and were blessed with their daughter Mary Kate. But they still had five embryos left and were determined to give the remaining embryos a shot at life. Carolyn was indeed pregnant—but it wasn’t their baby. She had been implanted with the wrong embryos.
At 58, Russian woman uses surrogates to have 4 kids by Michael Cook
Texas AG to Target: Show me how you’ll protect women and kids from criminals
AUSTIN, Texas, May 5, 2016 (LifeSiteNews) – The latest backlash Target received as a result of its transgender bathroom policy was a letter from Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton asking the company to provide its safety policies to protect women and children from “those who would use the cover of Target’s restroom policy for nefarious purposes.”
“Target, of course, is free to choose such a policy for its Texas stores,” Paxton wrote in a letter to Target CEO Brian Cornell. He noted the possibility of the Texas Legislature addressing the issue in the future, but said, “regardless of whether Texas legislates on this topic, it is possible that allowing men in women’s restrooms could lead to criminal and otherwise unwanted activity.”
“As chief lawyer and law enforcement officer for the State of Texas, I ask that you provide the full text of Target’s safety policies regarding the protection of women and children from those who would use the cover of Target’s restroom policy for nefarious purposes,” Paxton continued.
More than 1.1 million people have pledged to boycott Target over its new policy allowing men to access women’s bathrooms. Opponents of the policy worry that it puts women and children at risk by emboldening predators, who may now freely enter women’s restrooms.
Target’s new policy is “inclusive,” the company claims, and they say “everyone…deserves to be protected from discrimination, and treated equally.”
“Texans statewide can no longer be silent on the issue of protecting the safety of women and children,” Texas Values President and Attorney Jonathan Saenz said in a statement Wednesday urging Texans to boycott Target. This is the first time in its history the pro-family group has called for a boycott.
“We need all Texans to understand that Target is using this radical change in their store policy to try convince people that our laws should be changed in this dangerous direction as well,” said Saena. “Our goal with this boycott is for Target to change its dangerous new policy, to raise awareness of the real threats to safety that these policies bring and to help businesses and lawmakers understand the significant opposition to such measures that is growing daily… Texans all across our state must join this Boycott Target effort before someone gets hurt.”
On Tuesday a male allegedly filmed an underage girl at a Frisco, Texas, Target fitting room. Police are searching for the man.
There have been numerous incidents of male predators across North America accessing women’s facilities and citing transgender policies as allowing them to do so.
Christians, America has reached a crisis point. Are you ready to take up this challenge?
May 5, 2016 (Albert Mohler) -- For nearly two and a half centuries, Americans have enjoyed the enormous privilege and responsibility of forming our own government—a privilege rarely experienced throughout most of human history. For most of history, humanity has struggled with the question of how to respond to a government that was essentially forced upon them. But Americans have often struggled with a very different reality; how do we rightly respond to the government that we choose?
To put all of this in historical perspective, the Framers of the American experiment understood that a representative democracy built on the principle of limited government would require certain virtues of its citizens. These would include a restraint of passions and an upholding of traditional moral virtues, without which democracy would not be possible. As the idea of limited government implies, the citizenry would be required to carry out the social responsibilities of the community without the intrusion of government and, thus, citizens would be expected to have the moral integrity necessary for such an arrangement. The Framers of the American Republic also agreed that it would be impossible to have a representative democracy and a limited government if the people did not elect leaders who embodied the virtues of the citizenry while also respecting and protecting society’s pre-political institutions: marriage and family, the church, and the local community.
Thus, the idea of a limited government requires that society uphold and pursue the health of its most basic institutions. When a civil society is weak, government becomes strong. When the family breaks down, government grows stronger. When the essential institutions of society are no longer respected, government demands that respect for itself. That is a recipe for tyranny.
Much of this was essentially affirmed until the early decades of the 20th century when progressivists began promoting an agenda that fundamentally redefined the role of the federal government in public life. By the middle of the 20th century, the Democratic Party had essentially embraced this progressivist agenda, becoming committed to an increasingly powerful government—a government whose powers exceeded those enumerated in the Constitution. At the same time, the Democratic Party also began advocating for a basic redefinition of the morality that shaped the common culture. By and large, however, the Republican Party continued to maintain a commitment to the vision of America’s founders, advocating for a traditional understanding of morality while also upholding the principle of limited government.
By the 1980s, the two parties represented two very different worldviews and two very different visions of American government. For decades, each party has acted rather predictably and in ways that accord with their fundamental principles. All of that, however, has now changed.
The 2016 presidential campaign has developed in an entirely unpredictable manner and, in many respects, represents a crisis in American democracy. This crisis is not limited to either party. Bernie Sanders, the Independent senator from Vermont, has won several stunning victories in the primary season over presumed Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton. While it is still extremely likely that Clinton will become the Democratic nominee, Sanders support among voters represents a populist flirtation with Democratic Socialism. This pattern is something few Democrats could have imagined just one year ago. What this foray into Democratic Socialism represents, then, is a radical adjustment of the Democratic Party’s basic economic principles. Thus, even if Hillary Clinton becomes the nominee, the process will likely drag her even further to the left, eventually redefining the Democratic Party before our very eyes.
But if it is remarkable to see what is happening in the Democratic Party, it is absolutely shocking to see what is happening among Republicans. Traditionally, the Republican Party has established its reputation by standing for the principles advocated by the American Founders—limited government upheld by the health of society’s primary institutions such as marriage, family, and community. Yet Donald Trump, the presumptive nominee for the Republican Party, represents virtually everything the Republican Party has typically defined itself over against. Clearly, both political parties are now redefining themselves. What is not clear is where each party will ultimately end up. What is also not clear is whether the American experiment can survive such radical political change.
As already noted, the American experiment in limited government requires that the citizenry and those who hold public office honor certain moral virtues and respect the institutions that are crucial for a society to rightly function. Yet, we now find ourselves in a situation where the three leading candidates for president show little to no respect for such institutions in their articulations of public policy.
This fundamental redefinition of the American political landscape requires Christians to think carefully about their political responsibility. Make no mistake; we cannot avoid that responsibility. Even refusing to vote is itself a vote because it privileges those who do vote and increases the value of each ballot. In truth, we bear a political responsibility that cannot be dismissed or delegated to others. Every Christian must be ready to responsibly steward his or her vote at the polls.
To put the matter bluntly, we are now confronted with the reality that, in November, Hillary Clinton will likely be the Democratic nominee and Donald Trump the Republican nominee. This poses a significant problem for many Christians who believe they cannot, in good conscience, vote for either candidate. As a result, Christians are going to need a lot of careful political reflection in order to steward their vote and their political responsibility in this election cycle.
Headlines from around the world tell us that other representative democracies are at a similar moment of redefinition. Political turmoil now marks the United Kingdom and also nations like France and other key American allies. Perhaps democracy itself is now facing a crucial hour of decision and a crucial season of testing. It is no exaggeration to say that democracy is being tested around the world; it is certainly being tested here at home. Yet if this is a moment of testing for democracy, it is also a crucial moment for Christian witness. This election cycle is going to be a particular test for American Christians—and we are about to find out if Christians are up to this challenge.
Reprinted with permission from Albert Mohler.
‘Sick and twisted’: Scientists keep embryos alive outside womb up to 13 days for experimentation
May 5, 2016 (LifeSiteNews) – Two teams of scientists have announced that they have been able to keep human embryos alive outside the womb for 13 days for the purpose of conducting scientific experiments. Some call the announcement the onset of a “Brave New World,” while others are petitioning lawmakers to lift sanctions that would keep scientists from experimenting on newly conceived babies even longer.
Researchers from Cambridge University, King's College, and Rockefeller University said in two separate reports that they stopped at 13 days only to avoid violating an internationally accepted law. At least 12 nations restrict the amount of time a newly conceived child may be kept alive in a laboratory to 14 days, the point at which scientists believe “individuality” begins.
The newest development allows scientists to observe newly conceived human beings after the point at which implantation in the womb would have occurred.
Professor Magdalena Zernicka-Goetz, one of the studies' lead researchers, said her team's breakthrough could advance embryonic stem cell research and “can improve IVF success.”
Some scientists have called on the international community to extend the amount of time such experimentation can take place.
“If restrictions such as the 14-day rule are viewed as moral truths, such cynicism would be warranted,” three experts – Insoo Hyun, Amy Wilkerson, and Josephine Johnston – wrote in a commentary published yesterday in Nature magazine. “But when they are understood to be tools designed to strike a balance between enabling research and maintaining public trust, it becomes clear that, as circumstances and attitudes evolve, limits can be legitimately recalibrated.”
Pro-life experts said the experimentation destroys human life and could lead to grave ethical dilemmas by extending the research.
“No human being should be used for lethal experimentation, no matter their age or stage of development,” said Dr. David Prentice, a professor of molecular genetics and an Advisory Board Member for the Midwest Stem Cell Therapy Center. “The 14-day rule is itself arbitrary, and does not assuage those who believe life begins at the moment of sperm-egg fusion. Moreover, allowing experiments on human embryos beyond 14 days post-fertilization risks the lives of untold more human beings, because it further encourages creation and destruction for research purposes.”
Kristan Hawkins, president of Students for Life of America, called the experimentation “sick and twisted.”
“Science has undeniably proven that a new human life, with unrepeatable DNA, begins at conception,” she said. “There is no reason for experimentation on that human life and science itself should not be heralding thae fact that a tiny human being can survive now for two weeks outside of the womb, all for the sole purpose of experimentation.”
Dr. Prentice noted that embryonic stem cell research “has yielded no benefit thus far,” leading even its most vocal advocates, such as Michael J. Fox, to admit it has not lived up to its promise.
“If this research does not stop at 14 days, where does it stop?” asked Prentice. “This is a risky step which could encourage further eugenic attitudes and actions.”
Dr. Prentice encouraged Congress “to have a full and open debate on the issue of human embryo research before the research community moves further without oversight.”