Women lining up for free sterilization in Venezuela as economic crisis deepens
CARACAS, Venezuela, August 26, 2016 (LifeSiteNews) — Scores of Venezuelan women are opting for sterilization as the socialist-run Latin American country teeters on the brink of economic and social collapse, a number of sources report.
“People are so hopeless they would rather render themselves incapable of having children than risk bringing the children into the world. That is a working definition of hell on earth,” pointed out TheRebel.media’s Ezra Levant in a report “Now popular in Venezuela? Sterilization day.”
The Miranda clinic in Caracas is now sterilizing 40 women during its weekly “sterilization day” and has a waiting list of 500, Breitbart reported, describing the situation thus:
Government officials announced that the nation had run its supply of birth control out in July 2015. Venezuela has run out of most medicines — from common painkillers to cancer and HIV drugs — with doctors resorting to using veterinary medications to replace the human supplies where available. Most contraceptives are hard to come by and prohibitively expensive when available on the black market. The result of this lack of contraceptive supplies has been an astronomical increase in the number of teenage pregnancies nationwide.
By all accounts, Venezuela’s situation is deteriorating rapidly, with the country of 30 million wracked by rising violent crime, food shortages so acute that famine is imminent in some areas, rolling blackouts, and hyperinflation in the wake of the collapse of the global oil market.
Socialist President Nicolás Maduro put the military in charge of a new food supply system in July, according to The Wall Street Journal, and Conservative Review reported in August that his government had confiscated 2,000 guns as part of “an effort to disarm Venezuelans.”
More recently, Maduro reportedly warned Venezuelans in a public broadcast that Turkey’s “Erdogan will seem like a nursing baby compared to what the Bolivarian revolution will do if the right wing steps over the line with a coup.”
And government officials confirmed that Maduro has ordered the dismissal of any civil servants who sign a petition for for his recall, Bloomberg reported Tuesday.
According to UN statistics, Venezuela has one of Latin America’s highest rates of teenage pregnancies and large numbers of single-parent households, and notably, a Reuters report describes the Pill and condoms as “traditional contraception” in the predominantly Catholic country.
Archbishop Baltazar Porras of Mérida said an increase in sterilizations would be a “barbarity,” reported Reuters, noting that sterilizations are provided free of charge under Venezuela’s state-subsidized health care.
“Venezuela has been the victim of ‘cultural imperialism,'” stated Steven Mosher, president of the Virginia-based Population Research Institute.
“UN agencies, along with USAID-funded groups, have pushed family planning on the country as the answer to all of its problems. Just as in the U.S., although to a much more serious degree, the country’s economic devastation has resulted in lower marriage rates and a larger number of single parent households.”
“I believe it to be both cynical and cruel for the socialist government, having ruined the economy with its destructive policies, to now turn on its own people in this way,” Mosher told LifeSiteNews in an email.
“What was once the most prosperous country in Latin America is now a basket case, and what is the government’s response: If only you, the people, would stop having children, our economic situation would improve.”
“You can’t eliminate poverty by eliminating the poor, especially when the poverty is caused by government confiscation of wealth, expropriation of private enterprise, and corrupt and failing state-owned enterprises,” Mosher pointed out.
“There is a saying in Latin America which translates as ‘Fishing is good in troubled waters,’” noted Christine de Marcellus Vollmer, president of the Latin American Alliance for Families.
Vollmer, who lives in Caracas and has been a member Pontifical Council for the Family for more than 15 years and a founding member of the Pontifical Academy for Life, pointed to recently leaked emails revealing the intentions of billionaire population control activist George Soros to target Catholic countries in his push for worldwide access to abortion.
“We know that Soros is investing huge amounts to destroy Catholic morality. What better way than to cover up the political mistakes with a cruel ‘cure’ …. sterilization?” Vollmer noted in an email to LifeSiteNews.
“There is no justification for this when that money could be used to import more food, diapers, etc., and also to contribute to social awareness in order to help these people help themselves,” she said. “Sterilizing the women … permanently is a trick and a crime.”
Bishops urge president to allow aid
Meanwhile, the country’s Catholic bishops have urged Maduro to accept humanitarian aid as the crisis deepens, Crux reported in July.
The president has so far refused help from international charitable organizations, including the Vatican-sponsored Caritas Internationalis, which has tried to send medicine and food through different affiliates.
“Denying that there’s a crisis and refusing to let the world send medicine and food is not possible,” said Cardinal Jorge Urosa Savino, archbishop of Caracas.
The Venezuelan Bishops Conference also issued a statement confirming that four seminarians and another student were beaten July 1 in broad daylight by a pro-government mob in an escalation of street violence that hitherto had mainly taken place after nightfall, Crux reported.
Archbishop Porras said “these anti-socials act [occur] with total impunity, because here there’s no police or National Guard to stop these events.”
Bishop Jaime Villarroel of the Diocese of Carúpano told the Catholic charity Aid to the Church in Need in July:
…. the children especially are suffering from malnutrition. The food rations are supposed to be enough for a month, but they don’t even last a week. The people
are fainting from hunger. Famine reigns, which used to be unthinkable for Venezuela. We no longer know what to do or to whom we should turn. The police and also the politicians are often corrupt. We feel forsaken.
It is the Church’s “job to be there for our people and to relay a message of trust in God. Pastoral visits are a source of great strength in this terrible situation,” he said.
At the same time, only two percent of the people go to Mass in his diocese, and churches have been violently attacked, Villarroel said, adding that Catholics must try to persevere in a “culture of survival.”