March for Life 2012

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Sexual education for young kids

I found the following bit of news very disturbing.

In its new report "Stand and Deliver," the International Planned Parenthood Federation (IPPF) is demanding that governments, religious institutions and society at large provide "comprehensive sexuality education" for children as young as ten years old.

In a foreword, Bert Koenders of the Development Cooperation of the Netherlands, which helped fund the publication, asserts that, "Young people have the right to be fully informed about sexuality and to have access to contraceptives and other services. These rights are enshrined in various internationally agreed human rights convention and treaties, but – unfortunately – they are still not universally respected."

According to IPPF, as "young people are sexual beings," it should be self-evident that "sexuality education promotes individual well-being and the advancement of broader societal and public health goals." IPPF argues that "
comprehensive sexuality education" must be mandatory in school, and governments must also ensure that this education is delivered to those young people who are out of school (I find this particularly designed against home schooled kids and kids in private catholic schools).

IPPF claims that "With young people as partners, today's adult decision-makers have the chance to recast sex and sexuality as a positive force for change and development, as a source of pleasure, an embodiment of human rights and an expression of self."

IPPF contends that comprehensive sexuality education is necessary to encourage young people's "self-esteem, thoughtful decision-making and negotiation skills and it helps them to develop satisfying and pleasurable sexual lives." Moreover,
IPPF expounds that the "power" of comprehensive sexuality education "to challenge traditional gender roles" must not be underestimated.

The IPPF report stresses granting young people "unconstrained" access to sexuality education and services, "free from administrative restrictions and obstacles," like requiring health providers to obtain parental or spousal permission before providing contraceptives. IPPF demands that young people be able to "obtain the services they need and want, unconstrained by psychological, attitudinal, cultural or social factors."

IPPF targets religion and religious groups as one of the main barriers to adolescent access to sexuality education and sexual and reproductive "services." IPPF criticizes that many religious teachings "deny the pleasurable and positive aspects of sex and limited guidelines for sexual education often focus on abstinence before marriage," which IPPF claims has been ineffective in many settings.

According to IPPF, religious institutions – like the Catholic Church and Islamic schools – need to be "pragmatic" to accommodate young people as "sexual beings" and amend their teachings to "find a way of explaining and providing guidance on issues of sex and sexual relationships among young people, which supports rather than denies their experiences and needs."

Sexual education has been a topic of heated debates at the United Nations, with many critics fearing that parental rights to educate their children will be violated. Just last year, the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) released a set of sexual education guidelines that were met with such staunch resistance from conservatives that the organization was forced to take down the document from its website and review.

Critics expect more debates over "comprehensive sexuality education" to flare up in the coming months as UN Commission season gets underway.

(Article from

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Baby whose life support was to be removed moves his legs

There have been good and bad days for Isaac and Rebecka May these past three months; Wednesday was a good day.

First, their baby son — on the same day he was initially scheduled to be removed from life support — moved his legs in a way they hadn’t seen before, raising them to his stomach in alternating fashion.

“And (Isaiah) was wiggling his body as he was doing it, and moving his hands and his arms — just like you would see any other baby move,” 23-year-old mother Rebecka said by phone from Edmonton.

“It gives us hope.”

Second, the young family received a flood of support for the legal bid they launched earlier this week to keep their son on life support until they feel they know for certain what his medical future holds.

“Hopeful and confident — we have so much support out there,” she said, adding people are stopping and wishing them well. “It’s been very encouraging and uplifting for us. We are very humbled by it.”

On Tuesday, the couple from Rocky Mountain House, Alta., won a reprieve from the courts for their son. Last week, the first-time parents received a letter indicating doctors would take Isaiah off life support at 2 p.m. Wednesday.

The Mays are seeking 90 days to assess Isaiah’s condition in order to see if it improves and to explore alternatives. They are also seeking a second opinion.

Alberta Health Services are looking for a decision to be made within 30 days.

The board’s lawyer has said caregivers at Stollery Children’s Hospital in Edmonton have also been under considerable stress about the medical and ethical decision.

“It is appropriate to turn now to the courts for direction,” the health board said in a statement.

A judge is expected to make a decision about such a timeline on Jan. 27.

“The lawyers representing Alberta Health Services and the doctor who has primary care for Isaiah, they are professionals I very much respect and I know that we are working on this from a team perspective,” said the couple’s lawyer, Rosanna Saccomani.

Isaiah was born on Oct. 24, 2009, with his umbilical cord wrapped around his neck in the Rocky Mountain House hospital following a 40-hour labour.

Deprived of oxygen and having inhaled amniotic fluid and fecal matter, he was taken by air ambulance to Stollery Children’s Hospital, where he has been on a ventilator ever since. He is fed through an IV tube.

Rebecka and Isaac have been told that their son has severe and irreversible brain damage.


Saturday, January 9, 2010

Euthanasia Ad Campaign in Canada

Two Toronto advertising veterans have come up with park bench plaques – actually stickers – meant to draw attention to the fact that death can be excruciatingly difficult and to stir up debate about euthanasia and the need for living wills.

"Both Andy (McKay) and I have had parents who died painful deaths," Andy Manson says of the stickers, which look more striking than the familiar brass plaques issued for $1,525 under the City of Toronto's commemorative tree and bench program.

"We've both seen cases where passive euthanasia is the right thing to do."

Fort the rest of this revolting article refer to the Toronto Star (Liberal Canada news rag)

Friday, January 8, 2010

Portuguese Government to approve Gay 'Marriage" shortly

The Portuguese parliament on Friday (8th January 2010) passed the Socialist government's bill to legalise same-sex marriages, which Prime Minister Jose Socrates said was an historic step in the country's fight against discrimination.

Socrates' minority government pushed the bill through the house with support from left wing parties, while alternative proposals by the centre-right opposition for civil partnerships and a referendum on the issue were rejected.

"It is a small change in the law, but a very important and symbolic step to fully realise values that are pillars of open, tolerant and democratic societies; freedom, equality and non-discrimination," Socrates told parliament ahead of the vote.

The bill gives gay marriages the same rights as heterosexual marriages, including those on taxes, inheritance and housing, but does not offer them the right to adopt children.


It marks another modernising step for this predominantly Catholic country, especially after abortion was legalised in 2007. But the Catholic Church warned against the move.

"Millenary culture deems marriage as a contract between a man and a woman. Changing this understanding of what is a family can have extremely grave consequences in the future," said Bishop Dom Jose Policarpo, Lisbon patriarch.

The bill now needs to be ratified by conservative President Anibal Cavaco Silva. If he approves it, Portugal will join Spain, Belgium, the Netherlands, Norway, Sweden, South Africa and Canada in allowing gay marriages, all of which allow gay married couples to adopt children as well.

Gay and lesbian hopes had been dented by the rejection of the Left Bloc party's gay marriage bill and by a Constitutional Court upholding a ban last year.

Planned Parenthood Drops Lawsuit

After losing its initial battle in court in its attempt to silence its former director, a Texas Planned Parenthood has dropped its lawsuit. The abortion business targeted former director Abby Johnson, who recently quit and became pro-life, and the local pro-life group that helped her conversion.

Johnson had been the director of the Planned Parenthood center in this southeast Texas city but turned in her resignation on October 6 after years of a local pro-life group helping her see the problem with abortion.

Johnson quit after seeing an ultrasound of an abortion.
Planned Parenthood officials hit both Johnson and the Coalition for Life with restraining orders requiring them not to disclose information about the abortions done at its facility.

But, District Judge J.D. Langley issued a ruling earlier this month saying Planned Parenthood did not provide sufficient evidence that Johnson breached a confidentiality agreement concerning identity of an abortion practitioner who works at Planned Parenthood.

Now, the Alliance Defense Fund, which has provided legal help to Johnson and the Brazos Valley Coalition for Life, tells Planned Parenthood has dropped its lawsuit.

Planned Parenthood falsely claimed she violated a confidentiality agreement and breached an employment contract, though she never had one with the abortion center, ADF legal counsel Steven Aden explained. “This was the latest in a series of national Planned Parenthood scandals,” he told yesterday. “It wasn't about one woman or one clinic. Planned Parenthood is a national organization that has been kept afloat by hundreds of millions of dollars in taxpayer funding."

"The American people need to understand that this organization has been involved in scandal after scandal and has never owned up to them. Like so many Planned Parenthood lawsuits, this lawsuit was baseless, so we are pleased that it has been withdrawn," he continued. The order withdrawing the lawsuit, Planned Parenthood of Houston and Southeast Texas v. Johnson, was issued by the Brazos County District Court, 85th Judicial District.

In his decision, Judge Langley also ruled that Planned Parenthood provided no evidence to back up its allegations that Johnson took confidential patient records out of Planned Parenthood on the day she resigned. The judge also denied a Planned Parenthood request to prevent Johnson from seeking any lawsuit until a trial or any other court action had been made.

Dropping the lawsuit opens the door for her to offer more specifics about her work at Planned Parenthood and the reasons she resigned. Employed with Planned Parenthood for eight years, Johnson, the 2008 employee of the year for Planned Parenthood’s southeast Texas region, says she was put under duress by her employer in August when her center was economically pressured to perform more abortions to raise profits.

After recently being required to assist in an ultrasound-guided abortion procedure which she observed on screen, Johnson decided to resign.