Adam Cassandra

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Wikileaks cable: U.S. gov’t largest supporter of Philippines population control in past 40 years

Adam Cassandra
By Adam Cassandra
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September 9, 2011 (HLIWorldWatch.org) - A diplomatic cable recently published by the controversial website Wikileaks confirms the depth of support by the U.S. government for population control initiatives in the Philippines over the past 40 years, including support for the highly contested Reproductive Health (RH) Bill currently under consideration in the Philippine legislature.

“Landmark appropriations and draft legislation reflect increasing commitment within the Philippine Government to further expand and sustain programs started forty years ago with U.S. Government’s assistance through USAID,” former U.S. Ambassador to the Philippines Kristie Kenny said in the cable. “The U.S. Government continues to be the largest donor in the Philippine population sector supporting efforts to improve local government service delivery and increase private sector contributions to family health outcomes.”

The cable, sent from Manila to Washington, D.C. in July of 2008, was released by Wikileaks at a time of intense debate within the Philippine legislature, and among the Filipino people, about the state funding of contraceptives, abortifacients and other “family planning” services through the RH Bill. As the cable notes, the Catholic Church in the Philippines has led the opposition to the bill with the backing of pro-life organizations across the country.

“The new bill and its previous versions have raised the volume of the vigorous public debate on reproductive issues among between [sic] civil society, NGOs, the Catholic Church and legislators,” said Amb. Kenny. “The controversy has generated news media coverage and editorial commentary from all sides.”

Many Filipinos have openly questioned the international support of the bill by organizations pushing a population control agenda.

Philippine Senate Majority Leader Vicente Soto recently expressed concern over the “sinister” population control motives of some of the bill’s backers, saying, “We find groups, NGOs, pharmaceutical companies or business interests behind the bill or supporting people behind the bill, so this adds to our fears.”

“The same bill has been filed and re-filed since 1998’s 11th Congress (it is now the 15th), but as we have seen, its Western promoters have no intention of taking ‘no’ for an answer this time around,” said Dr. Ligaya Acosta, Regional Coordinator for Asia and Oceania for the international pro-life organization Human Life International (HLI), earlier this year. “Why, one might ask, does it keep reappearing, sometimes with different names or slightly revised content, if the people of the Philippines have so clearly rejected it? It reappears because it is fueled by mind-boggling amounts of money from international population control organizations, including the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), who have long expressed their concern that there are too many poor Filipinos for their comfort.”

Rep. Kimi Cojuangco of the Pangasinan province in the Philippines, a co-sponsor of the RH Bill, actually admitted that the bill was a means of population control during an exchange with another representative, saying the bill was “definitely” a population control measure, and agreeing that to curb poverty, the country needs a smaller population.

Another pro-RH Bill legislator Sen. Miriam Defensor-Santiago also admitted Monday that the bill still needs to be cleaned up of all references to population control, while acknowledging the influence in the bill of U.S. National Security Study Memorandum (NSSM) 200 during Senate debate.

NSSM-200, authored by former Secretary of State Henry Kissinger, “explicitly laid out a detailed strategy by which the United States would aggressively promote population control in developing nations in order to regulate (or have better access to) the natural resources of these countries,” according to Dr. Brian Clowes, Director of Research at HLI, in his 2004 publication Kissinger Report 2004: A Retrospective on NSSM-200.

“According to NSSM-200, elements of the implementation of population control programs could include: a) the legalization of abortion; b) financial incentives for countries to increase their abortion, sterilization and contraception-use rates; c) indoctrination of children; and d) mandatory population control, and coercion of other forms, such as withholding disaster and food aid unless [a country] implements population control programs,” wrote Dr. Clowes. “[T]he U.S. government has never renounced NSSM-200, but has only amended certain portions of its policy. NSSM-200, therefore, remains the foundational document on population control issued by the United States government.”

While it is highly unlikely that parties involved in promoting the RH Bill in the Philippines, or elsewhere, are directly familiar with NSSM-200, it is clear that its goals and assumptions have now become fundamental to the human development policies of the U.S. and other international governments and non-governmental organizations.

“USAID technical assistance enables pharmaceutical companies to launch lower-priced contraceptive products,” Amb. Kenny said in the cable, later adding, “Within the past three years, annual funding levels for population and family planning from the US Government have increased from around $13M to $15M.”

Under a section titled “So far, so good,” the ambassador noted that, “The use of oral contraceptive pills has increased steadily among the poor (by 30% in the past five years),” adding, “The poor spend around US$0.40 for pills, and the rich pay about US$1 for the same method.”

Amb. Kenny also pointed out that USAID assistance is “expanding the availability of accurate information on modern family planning methods within grass-roots communities.” [emphasis added]. The RH Bill currently contains a provision to fine and jail opponents who spread as-yet-undefined “malicious” falsehoods about the bill.

Dr. Acosta, who lives and works in the Philippines, said in an excerpt of a soon to be released interview while visiting the U.S. last month, “The American people have to know that America, very sadly, has become the greatest exporter of the culture of death – abortion, contraception – all of these things.”

“There’s so much money…I’m so amazed. I know that America is in crisis, but why is it…that America is giving billions of dollars, not only to my country, the Philippines, but all over Asia, Oceania and all over the world, to promote abortion and contraception?”

“What is important to note is not so much the scary-sounding name of a forty-year-old document like NSSM-200 that very few people have read, but to note how this new cable shows that its policy recommendations have been so perfectly implemented, and how language has evolved to make it sound like a positive thing for poor nations to stop having children for the sake of wealthy nations,” said Dr. Clowes in response to the release of the Wikileaks cable. “Even a proponent of the Philippines RH Bill, Senator Santiago, admits the concerns about population control, and stresses the need to use less offensive language – women’s health, poverty alleviation, and the like – to achieve the very same ends.”

“The question remains unanswered,” added Dr. Clowes. “When did it become acceptable for rich nations to pour billions of dollars into poor nations, all in an effort to get the poor to behave as the rich would prefer?”

This article reprinted with permission from HLIWorldWatch.org

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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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