Rita Diller

North Dakota boots Planned Parenthood sex ed program

Rita Diller
By Rita Diller
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January 25, 2013 (STOPP) - When North Dakota state legislator Bette Grande took to the airwaves to say that Planned Parenthood has no business in the state and threatened to cut a university’s state funding if it went forward with its Planned Parenthood partnership, she knocked the abortion giant right off its pedestal. Planned Parenthood was preparing to launch a community-based sex program with the help of two professors from North Dakota State University. The school and the abortion mogul were set to partner in a three-year, $1.2 million federal PREP education grant that had been awarded in September.

The sex program was scheduled to begin in January 2013 in a state whose mandated, singular message to youth in the realm of sexuality education is abstinence. According to a January 18 article from Inside Higher Ed:

Bette Grande, a Republican representative, criticized the university for going against the legislature’s wishes in allowing its faculty to apply for a grant that the state had turned down, and threatened to cut the university’s funding in retaliation. “When I see something that says this is Planned Parenthood—they’re not even a part of the state of North Dakota, and they shouldn’t be a part of North Dakota,” Grande said. “They’re not a part of how we do business in this state.”

On Wednesday, the university’s president, Dean Bresciani, appeared on the same radio show and announced that the college was freezing the grant money and would probably return it to the federal government.

“There’s a lot of confusion over what the project is and would do,” Bresciani said, but he said the question was a “moot point” because recent legal analysis suggested that proceeding with the project would violate state law.

“What we’ve found is a very specific codicil of the law that makes it clear that it cannot be with Planned Parenthood, and unless we can work around that—and again, I’m not holding out hope on that—we will have to go to the direction of returning the resources,” Bresciani said. The university, he said, “always wants to be in compliance with state law and state lawmakers’ intent.”

Interestingly, while there are no Planned Parenthood patient facilities inside the border of North Dakota, Planned Parenthood says it maintains an administrative and educational office in Fargo, North Dakota. It also has a “health center” in Moorhead, Minnesota, which adjoins Fargo. It obviously has been pushing to force its abortion and anything-goes sex agenda in the state of North Dakota since at least 2004, when Planned Parenthood of Minnesota and South Dakota changed its name to include North Dakota.

Those decrying the university’s decision to forego the federal funding and the Planned Parenthood partnership volleyed the idea that the only difference between abstinence education and Planned Parenthood’s “comprehensive sex education” is that the latter includes information about contraception.

But what does it really include? While there seems to be no information available online on the content of the now defunct North Dakota program “Reach One Teach One: North Dakota,” STOPP has chronicled detailed information on other PREP-funded programs being implemented across the nation.

One such program, It’s Your Game, was developed by Planned Parenthood Gulf Coast and The University of Texas Prevention Research Center in Houston with PREP funding—the same pool of federal money in play in North Dakota. The curriculum was stopped days short of its scheduled debut in 17 middle schools in the Cy-Fair School District in Houston when parents began to expose its outrageous content. Included in the program were videos of young female students being groped by young men; cartoon characters known as “lame brains” in bed after having sex, complete with moaning and knives flying out of one character’s penis because he got an STD; and much more. These videos are targeting 12- and 13-year-old students. You can view the parents’ website here. It contains screen shots of some of the objectionable content and instruction on how to get on the university website to view the content.

State senator Dan Patrick, head of the senate education committee, was instrumental in getting the curriculum stopped in the Cy-Fair school district. As we have seen recently in Houston and now in North Dakota, when legislators speak out against abusive sex education it comes to a screeching halt. Of course, in order to make that happen, those legislators who support family, decency, the sanctity of life, and traditional values must first be elected to office. Prayer and action are critical—action that begins at the grassroots level.

Planned Parenthood was invited into publicly funded schools and, according to its annual report, spent at least $41.5 million on indoctrinating children with its “comprehensive sex education” programs in the U.S. in 2012. It is imperative that parents and school officials awake and understand that eliminating Planned Parenthood sex education is essential to the welfare of our children. Fighting Planned Parenthood sex education is one of the cornerstones of STOPP’s plan to stop Planned Parenthood. It will be a major area of focus in our 2013 efforts. Our success depends on the unwavering involvement of local parents, educators, legislators, and community members. Please join us and urge others to do the same. To consult us free of charge about our strategy or to book one of our expert speakers, contact [email protected]

Mega-kudos to the people of North Dakota for standing up to Planned Parenthood and its evil agenda, and to Representative Bette Grande for boldly stepping in to protect the children of North Dakota! This is a huge victory for the children and the communities that inevitably remain on Planned Parenthood’s radar.

Reprinted with permission from STOPP.org.

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Lisa Bourne

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Pressure mounts as Catholic Relief Services fails to act on VP in gay ‘marriage’

Lisa Bourne
By Lisa Bourne
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Rick Estridge, Catholic Relief Services' Vice President of Overseas Finance, is in a same-sex "marriage," public records show. Twitter

BALTIMORE, MD, April 24, 2015 (LifeSiteNews.com) -- Nearly a week after news broke that a Catholic Relief Services vice president had contracted a homosexual “marriage” while also publicly promoting homosexuality on social media in conflict with Church teaching, the US Bishops international relief agency has taken no apparent steps to address the matter and is also not talking.

CRS Vice President of Overseas Finance Rick Estridge entered into a homosexual “marriage” in Maryland the same month in 2013 that he was promoted by CRS to vice president, public records show.

Despite repeated efforts at a response, CRS has not acknowledged LifeSiteNews’ inquiries during the week. And the agency told ChurchMilitant.com Thursday that no action had been taken beyond discussion of the situation and CRS would have no further comment.

"Nothing has changed,” CRS Senior Manager for Communications Tom said. “No further statement will be made."

LifeSiteNews first contacted CRS for a response prior to the April 20 release of the report and did not receive a reply, however Estridge’s Facebook and LinkeIn profiles were then removed just prior to the report’s release.

CRS also did not acknowledge LifeSiteNews’ follow-up inquiry later in the week.

“Having an executive who publicly celebrates a moral abomination shows the ineffectiveness of CRS' Catholic identity training,” Lepanto Institute President Michael Hichborn told LifeSiteNews. “How many others who hate Catholic moral teaching work at CRS?”

CRS did admit it was aware Estridge was in a “same-sex civil marriage” to Catholic News Agency (CNA) Monday afternoon, and confirmed he was VP of Overseas Finance and had been with CRS for 16 years.

“At this point we are in deliberations on this matter,” Price told CNA that day.

ChurchMilitant.com also reported that according to its sources, it was a well-known fact at CRS headquarters in Baltimore that Estridge was in a homosexual “marriage.” 

“There is no way CRS didn't know one of its executives entered into a mock-marriage until we broke the story,” Hichborn said. “The implication is clear; CRS top brass had no problem with having an executive so deliberately flouting Catholic moral teaching.”

“The big question is,” Hichborn continued, “what other morally repugnant matters is CRS comfortable with?”

While the wait continues for the Bishops’ relief organization to address the matter, those behind the report and other critics of prior instances of CRS involvement in programs and groups that violate Church principles continue to call for a thorough and independent review of the agency programs and personnel.

“How long should it take to call an employee into your office, tell him that his behavior is incompatible with the mission of the organization, and ask for his resignation?” asked Population Research Institute President Steven Mosher. “About thirty minutes, I would say.”

“The Catholic identity of CRS is at stake,” Hichborn stated. “If CRS does nothing, then there is no way faithful Catholics can trust the integrity of CRS's programs or desire to make its Catholicity preeminent.” 

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Thousands of marriage activists gathered in D.C. June 19, 2014 for the 2nd March for Marriage. Dustin Siggins / LifeSiteNews.com
The Editors

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Watch the March for Marriage online—only at LifeSiteNews

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WASHINGTON, D.C., April 24, 2015 (LifeSiteNews.com) -- At noon on Saturday, the National Organization for Marriage (NOM) and dozens of cosponsors, coalition partners, and speakers will launch the third annual March for Marriage. Thousands of people are expected to take place in this important event to show the support real marriage has among the American people.

As the sole media sponsor of the March, LifeSiteNews is proud to exclusively livestream the March. Click here to see the rally at noon Eastern Time near the U.S. Capitol, and the March to the Supreme Court at 1:00 Eastern Time.

And don't forget to pray that God's Will is done on Tuesday, when the Supreme Court hears arguments about marriage!

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Hillary Clinton: ‘Religious beliefs’ against abortion ‘have to be changed’

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By Ben Johnson

NEW YORK CITY, April 24, 2015 (LifeSiteNews.com) – Speaking to an influential gathering in New York City on Thursday, Hillary Clinton declared that “religious beliefs” that condemn "reproductive rights," “have to be changed.”

“Yes, we've cut the maternal mortality rate in half, but far too many women are still denied critical access to reproductive health,” Hillary told the Women in the World Summit yesterday.

Liberal politicians use “reproductive health” as a blanket term that includes abortion. However, Hillary's reference echoes National Organization for Women (NOW) president Terry O’Neill's op-ed from last May that called abortion “an essential measure to prevent the heartbreak of infant mortality.”

The Democratic presidential hopeful added that governments should throw the power of state coercion behind the effort to redefine traditional religious dogmas.

“Rights have to exist in practice, not just on paper. Laws have to be backed up with resources, and political will,” she said. “Deep-seated cultural codes, religious beliefs, and structural biases have to be changed.”

The line received rousing applause at the feminist conference, hosted in Manhattan's Lincoln Center by Tina Brown.

She also cited religious-based objections to the HHS mandate, funding Planned Parenthood, and the homosexual and transgender agenda as obstacles that the government must defeat.

“America moves ahead when all women are guaranteed the right to make their own health care choices, not when those choices are taken away by an employer like Hobby Lobby,” she said. The Supreme Court ruled last year that closely held corporations had the right to opt out of the provision of ObamaCare requiring them to provide abortion-inducing drugs, contraceptives, and sterilization to employees with no co-pay – a mandate that violates the teachings of the Catholic Church and other Christian bodies.

Clinton lamented that “there are those who offer themselves as leaders...who would defund the country's leading provider of family planning,” Planned Parenthood, “and want to let health insurance companies once again charge women just because of our gender.”

“We move forward when gay and transgender women are embraced...not fired from good jobs because of who they love or who they are,” she added.

It is not the first time the former first lady had said that liberal social policies should displace religious views. In a December 2011 speech in Geneva, then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said perhaps the “most challenging issue arises when people cite religious or cultural values as a reason to violate or not to protect the human rights of LGBT citizens.” These objections, she said, are “not unlike the justification offered for violent practices towards women like honor killings, widow burning, or female genital mutilation.”

While opinions on homosexuality are “still evolving,” in time “we came to learn that no [religious] practice or tradition trumps the human rights that belong to all of us.”

Her views, if outside the American political mainstream, have been supported by the United Nations. The UN Population Fund stated in its 2012 annual report that religious objections to abortion-inducing drugs had to be overcome. According to the UNFPA report, “‘duty-bearers’ (governments and others)” have a responsibility to assure that all forms of contraception – including sterilization and abortion-inducing ‘emergency contraception’ – are viewed as acceptable – “But if they are not acceptable for cultural, religious or other reasons, they will not be used.”

Two years later, the United Nations' Committee on the Rights of the Child instructed the Vatican last February that the Catholic Church should amend canon law “relating to abortion with a view to identifying circumstances under which access to abortion services may be permitted.”

At Thursday's speech, Hillary called the legal, state-enforced implementation of feminist politics “the great unfinished business of the 21st century,” which must be accomplished “not just for women but for everyone — and not just in far away countries but right here in the United States.”

“These are not just women's fights. These have to be America's fights and the world's fights,” she said. “There's still much to be done in our own country, much more to be done around the world, but I'm confident and optimistic that if we get to work, we will get it done together.”

American critics called Clinton's suggestion that a nation founded upon freedom of religion begin using state force to change religious practices unprecedented.

“Never before have we seen a presidential candidate be this bold about directly confronting the Catholic Church's teachings on abortion,” said Bill Donohue of the Catholic League.

“In one sense, this shows just how extreme the pro-abortion caucus actually is,” Ed Morrissey writes at HotAir.com. “Running for president on the basis of promising to use the power of government to change 'deep seated cultural codes [and] religious beliefs' might be the most honest progressive slogan in history.”

He hoped that, now that she had called for governments to change religious doctrines, “voters will now see the real Hillary Clinton, the one who dismisses their faith just the same as Obama did, and this time publicly rather than in a private fundraiser.”

Donohue asked Hillary “to take the next step and tell us exactly what she plans to do about delivering on her pledge. Not only would practicing Catholics like to know, so would Evangelicals, Orthodox Jews, Muslims, and all those who value life from conception to natural death.”

You may watch Hillary's speech below.

Her comments on religion begin at approximately 9:00. 

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