Peter Baklinski

‘What the heck does homosexuality have to do with the pro-life movement?’

Peter Baklinski
Peter Baklinski
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27 November, 2012 (LifeSiteNews.com) – People often wonder why many people involved in the pro-life movement are also interested in homosexuality-related issues. They especially wonder if defending traditional marriage really has anything to do with being pro-life.

The answer to this is simple: Being pro-life is much more than saving babies. It’s also about fighting for the flourishing of the human person every step of the way, from conception, through birth, through childhood, through adulthood, till natural death. It’s about promoting a “Culture of Life.”

That’s why many pro-lifers aren’t just concerned about abortion: they also tackle euthanasia, cloning, homosexuality, and other life and family issues, which, after a second glance, are found to be all interconnected. If you’re a big-picture looker, it’s easy to see that these are the hot-button items on a massive international scale, leaving no nation or locality unaffected.

The reason why the pro-life movement puts so much time and energy into ending abortion in particular is because denying someone the “right to life” is the gravest injustice. The right to life is the basis for the enjoyment of all other rights. When this right is taken away from the most vulnerable among us, then no one’s rights are secure. There is no real justice, just the domination of the weaker by the stronger, the survival of the fittest. Abortion is really the deadliest kind of bullying.

At the 1994 National Prayer Breakfast in Washington, Mother Teresa called abortion the “greatest destroyer of peace today”. She said abortion was a “war against the child — a direct killing of the innocent child — murder by the mother herself.” She shrewdly pointed out that “if we accept that a mother can kill even her own child, how can we tell other people not to kill one another?”

Yes, we pro-lifers must fight for unborn children and secure their right to life. But we must also fight for children to be born and raised in circumstances that will allow them to flourish as human persons.

The environment that is the most conducive to the flourishing of human persons — bar none — is the human family composed of one man united to one woman in a lifelong union called marriage. Study after study has shown this again and again.

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War on Marriage and the Family

But there is an unprecedented war on the family today that apparently wants to extinguish this most fundamental social unit. The war has been waged most intensely in the last 100 years or so.

The destroyers of the family began by splitting husbands apart from wives. They did this by introducing contraception into the sexual act under the guise of ‘sexual freedom’. With contraception, spouses took each other’s intimate treasure of fertility and sacrificed it on the altar of sexual freedom so as to increase their sexual availability with ‘no consequences.’

But in disregarding the ‘whole person’ by excluding fertility, contracepting husbands and wives began to relate to one another merely as stimulating occasions for orgasm. Their respect and love for one another suffered since nobody likes to be devalued and nobody likes to be used as a tool for someone else’s pleasure. The contraception movement started gaining traction in the early part of the 20th century and reached its heyday in the late 1960’s. Marriage was weakened and the destructive fallout of the contraceptive movement is ongoing to this day.

Widespread use of contraception led to the need for legalized abortion as a solution to failed contraception. Couples who had closed themselves to the gift of life demanded a quick and easy way out from ‘unwanted’ responsibilities. With children no longer being viewed as the crowning glory of marriage, marriage was weakened further.

Closely following the contraception movement came the no-fault divorce movement in the mid 1950’s. Contracepting couples who had tasted the bad fruit of using each other for selfish enjoyment needed a quick and easy way out from what was supposed to be a lifelong relationship but that had gone horribly wrong. With permanence taken out of marriage, marriage was weakened even further.

Broken, Crushed, and Hurting Children

The above-mentioned ‘social innovations’ have always resulted in the suffering of innocent children. Contraception hurts children in that it closes an adult’s heart and mind to the gift of new life. Abortion hurts children by killing them in the most brutal and horrific ways imaginable. And of course divorce wreaks total havoc on a child’s physical, psychological, and moral formation.

These social innovations bankrupted marriage, practically stripping it of its natural function of nurturing new human life.

Then came the most extreme social innovation. Marriage would now be stripped of its biological “male and female” quality. The logic leading to this push was unstoppable. Once marriage was no longer viewed as a union for the sake of creating and nurturing new human life, then there was no longer any reason to keep that union exclusively between a male and female. By now, the cultural framework of traditional marriage was so ravaged by contraception, divorce, and abortion that it was unable to withstand the carefully planned assault by homosexual activists.

The homosexual activists’ battle cry for “equality” has brought us where we are today, with Canada having changed the definition of marriage in 2005, and with many of the U.S. states having recently followed suit. And they where able to pull this off because of the weakened state of traditional marriage. Homosexual activists have successfully tricked the Western world into believing that their absolutely sterile homosexual activity is of equal merit to society as the fruitful act between a husband and wife that naturally produces children. With the social push to change the definition of marriage came a corresponding mindset that masculinity and femininity, fatherhood and motherhood, are completely irrelevant to a child’s formation.

Now with traditional marriage practically defined out of existence, children will suffer more than ever. They will suffer because the institution where they best thrive has become socially bankrupt. Men and women, abandoning marriage as a ‘meaningless social frill’, will still have children together, but not in the environment that best favors the flourishing of a new human being. Children will suffer further as gay and lesbian couples, walking proudly under the legal banner of newly redefined ‘marriage’, will attempt, and have done so already, to raise and form children.

Research released this year indicates however that the social experiment of homosexual ‘marriage’ will cause nothing but serious harm to children. Children raised by gay and lesbian parents have significantly more social and mental-health problems when compared to children from an intact biological family. The research not only showed that there was a major difference between the children from both groups, but it highlighted that family instability is a ‘characteristic mark’ of same-sex relationships.

The social mistakes we as a society have made, and are making right now, weigh heavily on the shoulders of children. They are the innocent victims of social experimentation who have become morally and even physically crushed and broken. They are the ones who have become pulverized in the name of so-called ‘freedom, equality, and progress’.

Being Pro-Life to the Core

These startling facts illuminate why so many pro-life activists are constantly highlighting research that supports traditional marriage. It’s why they take so seriously homosexual-related issues, calling attention to the rampant attacks made on traditional marriage.

Leaders in the culture war know that education on this issue is the necessary first step to building a massive campaign to protect children from being deliberately denied a mom and dad in a stable marriage. They know that the well-being of children depends on turning the cultural tide to favor true marriage. An unstable, morally disordered environment is no place to teach a child how to live, how to become all that he or she is meant to be, how to learn to be a free and responsible human being.

This is why pro-lifers must fight for traditional marriage, never compromising in the belief that marriage must be entered freely by one man and one woman, that spouses must give of themselves totally holding nothing back, that the relationship must be faithful until death, and that it must be fruitful in raising up new lives. This is simply the best situation for a child’s moral, physical, and mental flourishing.

To be pro-life is to be on guard against anything that threatens this most precious social institution necessary for human flourishing. In fighting for true marriage, we are fighting on behalf of children. We are fighting for them to have a life lived to the fullest. In our fight for them, we are securing the very future of humanity.

Defending authentic marriage has everything to do with being pro-life. It’s to be pro-life, right down to the core. So, let’s roll up the sleeves, get to work, and do what pro-lifers do best: fight on behalf of children.

Peter Baklinski has a Masters in Sacred Theology with a Specialization on Marriage and Family (STM). He is pursuing a PhD from the John Paul II Institute in Australia.

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Indiana Gov. Mike Pence signs the state's Religious Freedom Restoration Act.
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Indiana faces backlash as it becomes 20th state to protect religious liberty

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By Ben Johnson

INDIANAPOLIS, IN, March 27, 2015 (LifeSiteNews.com) – On Thursday, Indiana became the 20th state to prevent the government from forcing people of faith to violate their religious beliefs in business or the public square.

Gov. Mike Pence signed the Religious Freedom Restoration Act (SB 101) into law, saying the freedom of religion is a preeminent American value.

“The Constitution of the United States and the Indiana Constitution both provide strong recognition of the freedom of religion, but today, many people of faith feel their religious liberty is under attack by government action,” Pence said.

Gov. Pence, a possible dark horse candidate for president in 2016, cited court cases brought by religious organizations and employers, including Catholic universities, against the HHS mandate. “One need look no further than the recent litigation concerning the Affordable Care Act. A private business and our own University of Notre Dame had to file lawsuits challenging provisions that required them to offer insurance coverage in violation of their religious views.”

The new law could also prevent Christian business owners from being compelled to bake a cake or take photographs of a same-sex "marriage" ceremony, if doing so violates their faith. In recent years, business owners have seen an increased level of prosecution for denying such services, despite their religious and moral beliefs.

The state's pro-life organization applauded Pence for his stance. "Indiana's pro-life community is grateful to Gov. Mike Pence for signing the Religious Freedom Restoration Act into law,” said Indiana Right to Life's president and CEO Mike Fichter. “This bill will give pro-lifers a necessary legal recourse if they are pressured to support abortion against their deeply-held religious beliefs.”

“RFRA is an important bill to protect the religious freedom of Hoosiers who believe the right to life comes from God, not government,” he said.

The state RFRA is based on the federal bill introduced by Sen. Chuck Schumer, D-NY, and signed into law by President Bill Clinton in 1993. The Supreme Court cited the federal law when it ruled that Hobby Lobby had the right to refuse to fund abortion-inducing drugs, if doing so violated its owners' sincerely held religious beliefs.

In signing the measure – similar to the one Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer vetoed – Pence and the state of Indiana have faced a torrent of venom from opponents of the bill, who claim it grants a “right to discriminate” and raises the spectre of segregation.

"They've basically said, as long as your religion tells you to, it's OK to discriminate against people," said Sarah Warbelow, legal director of the Human Rights Campaign, a national homosexual pressure group.

The Disciples of Christ, a liberal Protestant denomination based in the state capital, has said it will move its 2017 annual convention if the RFRA became state law. The NCAA warned the bill's adoption “might affect future events” in the Hoosier state.

Pence denied such concerns, saying, "This bill is not about discrimination, and if I thought it legalized discrimination in any way I would've vetoed it."

The bill's supporters say that, under the Obama administration, it is Christians who are most likely to suffer discrimination.

"Originally RFRA laws were intended to protect small religious groups from undue burdens on practicing their faith in public life,” said Mark Tooley, president of the Institute on Religion and Democracy. “It was not imagined there would come a day when laws might seek to jail or financially destroy nuns, rabbis or Christian camp counselors who prefer to abstain from the next wave of sexual and gender experimentation. And there's always a next wave.”

The bill's supporters note that it does not end the government's right to coerce people of faith into violating their conscience in every situation. However, it requires that doing so has to serve a compelling government interest and the government must use the least restrictive means possible. “There will be times when a state or federal government can show it has a compelling reason for burdening religious expression – to ensure public safety, for instance,” said Sarah Torre, an expert at the Heritage Foundation. “But Religious Freedom Restoration Acts set a high bar for the government to meet in order to restrict religious freedom.”

Restricting the ability of government to interfere in people's private decisions, especially their religious decisions, is the very purpose of the Constitution, its supporters say.

"Religious freedom is the cornerstone of all liberty for all people,” Tooley said. “Deny or reduce it, and there are no ultimate limits on the state's power to coerce."

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Fight pornography. Beat pornography. And join the ranks of those who support their fellow men and women still fighting.
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Porn is transforming our men from protectors into predators. Fight back.

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By Jonathon van Maren

Since I’ve gotten involved in anti-pornography work, I’ve met countless men who struggle, fight, or have beaten pornography. Each person seems to deal with the guilt and shame that accompanies porn use in a different way—some deny that it’s “all that bad,” others pretend that they could “stop whenever they want,” many insist that “everyone is doing it,” and most, when pressed, admit to a deep sense of self-loathing.

One worry surfaces often in conversation: What do my past or current struggles with pornography say about me as a man? Can I ever move past this and have a meaningful and fulfilling relationship?

I want to address this question just briefly, since I’ve encountered it so many times.

First, however, I’ve written before how I at times dislike the language of “struggling” with pornography or pornography “addiction,” not because they aren’t accurate but because too often they are used as an excuse rather than an explanation. It is true, many do in fact “struggle” with what can legitimately be considered an addiction, but when this language is used to describe an interminable battle with no end (and I’ve met dozens of men for whom this is the case), then I prefer we use terminology like “fighting my porn habit.” A semantic debate, certainly, but one I think is important. We need to stop struggling with porn and start fighting it.

Secondly, pornography does do devastating things to one’s sense of masculinity. We know this. Pornography enslaves men by the millions, perverting their role as protector and defender of the more vulnerable and turning them into sexual cannibals, consuming those they see on-screen to satisfy their sexual appetites.

What often starts as mere curiosity or an accidental encounter can turn into something that invades the mind and twists even the most basic attractions. I’ve met porn users who can’t believe the types of things they want to watch. They haven’t simply been using porn. Porn has actively reshaped them into something they don’t recognize and don’t like. 

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Porn is this generation’s great assault on masculinity and the role of men in society. It is essential that we win this battle for the sake of society’s survival. Contrary to what the gender-bending and family-morphing progressive elites claim, good husbands and good fathers and good church leaders are necessary for a healthy society. But pornography is destroying marriages, creating distant and disconnected fathers, and, metaphoricaclly castrating men, hindering their ability and desire to make a positive difference in the society around us.

So, with this sobering set of facts in mind let’s return to the question: what do pornography struggles, past and present, say about a man?

The proper way to respond is with everything that is good about masculinity. We have to fight pornography as men have fought countless evils throughout the ages. We need to fight pornography to protect women, and wives, and children, and our society at large. This is how pornography threatens society, by castrating men, and turning them from protectors into predators. Rooting out the evil in our own lives allows us to better fulfill the role we are called to perform in the lives of others. Battling our own demons enables us to battle the wider cultural demons. Every day without porn is another bit of virtue built. Virtue is not something you’re born with. Virtues are habits that you build. And one day without porn is the first step towards the virtue of being porn-free.

Many men ask me if men who have had past porn addictions are cut out for being in a relationship or working in the pro-life movement or in other areas where we are called to protect and defend the weak and vulnerable. And the answer to that is an unequivocal yes. Our society needs men who know what it means to fight battles and win. Our society needs men who can say that they fought porn and they beat porn, because their families and their friends were too important to risk. Our society needs men who rose to the challenge that the evils of their generation threw at them, and became better men as the result. And our society needs men who can help their friends and their sons and those around them fight the plague of pornography and free themselves from it, too—and who can understand better and offer encouragement more relevant than someone who has fought and been freed themselves?

So the answer to men is yes. Fight pornography. Beat pornography. And join the ranks of those who support their fellow men and women still fighting. Lend them support and encouragement. We cannot change the fact that porn has left an enormous path of destruction in its wake. But we can change the fact that too many people aren’t fighting it. We can change our own involvement. And we can rise to the challenge and face this threat to masculinity with all that is good about masculinity.

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Red Alert!

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By John-Henry Westen

I don’t like having to do this, but we have always found it best to be totally upfront with our readers: our Spring fundraising campaign is now worrying us! 

You see, with just 6 days remaining, we have only raised 30% of our goal, with $125,000 still left to raise. That is a long ways to go yet.

We have no choice but to reach our minimum goal of $175,000 if we are going to be able to continue serving the 5+ million readers who rely on us every month for investigative and groundbreaking news reports on life, faith and family issues.

Every year, LifeSite readership continues to grow by leaps and bounds. This year, we are again experiencing record-breaking interest, with over 6 million people visiting our website last month alone!

This unprecedented growth in turn creates its own demand for increased staff and resources, as we struggle to serve these millions of new readers.

And especially keep this in mind. As many more people read LifeSite, our mission of bringing about cultural change gets boosted. Our ultimate goal has always been to educate and activate the public to take well-informed, needed actions.

Another upside to our huge growth in readers is that it should be that much easier to reach our goal. To put it simply: if each person who read this one email donated whatever they could (even just $10) we would easily surpass our goal! 

Today, I hope you will join the many heroes who keep this ship afloat, and enable us to proclaim the truth through our reporting to tens of millions of people every year!

Your donations to LifeSite cause major things to happen! We see that every day and it is very exciting. Please join with us in making a cultural impact with a donation of ANY AMOUNT right now. 

You can also donate by phone or mail. We would love to hear from you!

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