Thursday, 26 April 2012

44 years...

Tomorrow is the 44th annivesary of the Abortion Act...

44 years of the legally sanctioned killing of babies.

44 years of mothers being denied the care and support they need.

44 years of trained medics using their skills to kill, rather than cure.

44 years of media lies and distortion about the reality of abortion.

44 years of those defending the defenceless being maligned as bigots, women-haters, religious fanatics and worse.

44 years of pain, loss and regret.

44 years of lost motherhood.

44 years of lost fatherhood.

44 years of the eugenic killing of disabled babies.

44 years of the abortion industry counting their profits from the professional killing of babies.

44 years of mothers sanctioning the killing of their children.

44 years of peaceful pro-life opposition to abortion. May our efforts become ever more determined until we are rid of the cruel scourge of abortion.

It must stop.

You can help end abortion this weekend.

Tomorrow Friday 27th April, Bishop John Hines will lead a vigil for an end to abortion outside Marie Stopes abortion facility, Brewer Street, Maidstone, Kent ME14 1RV. Begins with Mass at 12.30, followed by a procession from 13.00. See the flyer for full details.

On Saturday SPUC are holding pro-life chains all over the country, giving public witness to the injustice of abortion. There are a number of pro-abortion protests planned to oppose our peaceful presence. Join us and be a voice for the unborn. See the SPUC Director's blog for full details.

~


If you or anybody you know has been involved with or affected by abortion you should know that there are people who can help.

Wednesday, 25 April 2012

Yeehaw watch out for "American tactics and American money"

The bastions and luminaries of the abortion lobby in the UK never tire of warning us about the dangers of "American tactics" "American money" "the Americanisation of the abortion debate in the UK" and "links to American anti-choice groups". Indeed, words such as "George W. Bush" "Palin" "Santorum" "conservative" "religious right" "republican" and worst of all "Texas" can induce frenzies and frothing at the mouth amongst the most stalwart defenders of an abortionist's right to vacuum out a child from the womb of his or her mother, and make a tidy sum doing it. I'm surprised we haven't seen flag burnings outside the American embassy and calls for boycotts of hamburger sellers because they harass the obese.  Or maybe not. You see, it's not so much about America and Americans, as it is about the right sort of American. It's about the right sort of company-keeping.


Dr. Patricia Lohr is chief abortionist at Bpas. Dr. Lohr comes from.....comes from.......America! She was recruited in 2007. Dr. Lohr trained as an abortionist in New York and Pittsburgh, both cities in America. The screen shot above comes from the Bpas Spring 2008 newsletter proudly announcing that Bpas has recruited an American to head-up its abortions. To quote Bpas "CEO Ann Furedi, was very keen to recruit someone who would bring a fresh, new approach to our clinical processes; and recruiting a Medical Director from the United States will certainly achieve this aim" - we bet it has, Bpas. I wonder why we don't hear pro-abortion bastions like Abortion Rights and the Guardian bewailing Bpas for importing Americans!?  








This screen shot above, taken from the Bpas research page, shows that in 2009 Lohr et al conducted a survey about disposal of "fetal tissue" - to you and me that's the dead bodies of the unborn that Bpas have killed, but "fetal tissue" just sounds so much more respectable. This survey was lead by Lohr - an American - and funded by the Society for Family Planning....

....Oh no, watch out, the Society for Family Planning is an American organisation! They gave Lohr $12,896 big green American bucks to do her survey. That means Americans have given American bucks to an American to carry out abortion related surveys in the UK. Is Abortion Rights and Education for Choice happy about this? Probably, yes. It's the right sort of American people doing the right sort of thing, so it's fine. Below is the screen shot of the postal address of the Society for Family Planning, with the URL across the top, just in case there was any doubt.


And finally, below is a screen shot taken from Abortion Review, the online publication of Bpas. On Wednesday 7 February 2012 Bpas held a lecture titled "Abortion in the US: popularity, Politics, and Practice" (obviously they are keen to prove their right-sort-of-American-loving-values). Not stopping there, they flew an American, Professor Carol Sanger from Columbia Law School (no relation to Margaret Sanger, the shared surname is just an unhappy coincidence) to give the presentation. Was there an uproar? Did any abortion activists hold a protest? No, because it's the right sort of American saying the right sort of thing, so it's smiles all round. 


So, when abortion campaigners, activists, and journalists start warning us about "Texan cowboy anti-choicers bringing their tactics to sunny England" you might want to politely tell them that their "we're-moderate-reasoned-let's-have-a-dialogue-British-who-want-dialogue-about-dialogue-over-a-cup-of-tea-people-who-are-concerned-about-choice-let's-not-become-polarised-about-this-as-we-continue-to-kill-570-unborn-children-a-day" mantra has worn very thin. You could throw in the fact that Bpas has two American speakers coming over from the U-S-of-A in May to lecture the Brits about abortion (Beverley Winikoff and James Trussell), or the fact that the UK pro-abortion journal Reproductive Health Matters has an American Editor called Marge Berer, or the recent news that American outfit American Students for Choice will be funding abortion work experience for UK med students at Bpas abortion facilities. The pro-abortion pro-death lobby like using smokescreens, but they are easily blown away. 

Tuesday, 24 April 2012

Marie Stopes: The other side of the story



The controversial 2008 postage stamp
Back in 2008 Royal Mail caused controversy by honouring birth control pioneer Marie Stopes with a postage stamp, thus placing her alongside the many great national figures who have received this honour in the past. Those who defended the decision lauded her as a pioneer of women’s rights who, in the words of Marie Stopes International, ‘did more to emancipate working class women in 1920s’ Britain than any of her contemporaries.’ This is certainly the commonly held view of Marie Stopes, but is it an accurate representation?

Marie Carmichael Stopes was born on 15th October 1880. She studied botany and geology at University College London and was awarded a doctorate in palaeobotany in 1904 from the University of Munich. She lectured at University College London and then at the University of Manchester. She married in March 1911 and filed for divorce on 11 May 1913 claiming that her marriage had never been consumated. Around this time she began writing a book on Married Love.

In 1915 she met American eugenicist and birth controller Margaret Sanger and sought her advice about her treatment of contraception in the book. The book remained unpublished until 1918 because she was unable find a willing publisher. In the same year she married Humphrey Hugh Roe, a supporter of birth control, and published a birth control manual entitled Wise Parenthood: a Book for Married People. She followed this with a pamphlet which targeted the poor called Letter to Working Mothers on how to have healthy children and avoid weakening pregnancies. This was distributed free of charge to ensure that her birth control message, not alluded to directly in the title, reached as many people as possible.

In 1920 Stopes took a new step and opened Britain's first birth control clinic. Later that same year she founded the Society for Constructive Birth Control and Racial Progress. From now on she would increasingly dedicate her life to birth control and eugenics.

Eugenic profiling
Stopes was a committed supporter of eugenics which was defined by eugenicist Francis Galton as 'the study of all agencies under human control which can improve or impair the racial quality of future generations’. She desired the creation of 'a new and irradiated race' of human beings freed from the 'defects' suffered by previous generations, maintaining that 'the only hope for the race is the conscious elimination of all diseased and overcrowded lives before their conception.'

In her 1920 book Radiant Motherhood Stopes condemned a society that 'allows the diseased, the racially negligent, the thriftless, the careless, the feeble-minded, the very lowest and worst members of the community, to produce innumerable tens of thousands of stunted, warped, and inferior infants.' She demanded the 'sterilisation of those totally unfit for parenthood be made an immediate possibility, indeed made compulsory.'

Stopes applied her eugenics principles to her own family and was furious when her son Harry married a women with an eye condition, expressing horror that her grandchildren might inherit the same defect. She wrote ‘Mary has an inherited physical defect and morally should never bear children’. By marrying her he had betrayed his parents and made ‘a mock of our life's work for eugenic breeding and the race.’ When she died she left Harry only a few small items in her will. It is worth noting however that even her crusade for birth control was not her main priority; in 1925 she wrote that she was ‘out for a much greater thing than birth-control. I am out to smash the tradition of organised Christianity.’ She wrote to Henry Ford asking for ‘a million or two’ to help her in the ‘very biggest fight in history’ against ‘the reactionary forces’ of the Catholic Church.

In August 1939 Marie Stopes sent a volume of her poetry to Adolf Hitler with the following letter:

Dear Herr Hitler,

Love is the greatest thing in the world: so will you accept from me these [poems] that you may allow the young people of your nation to have them?

The young must learn love from the particular 'till they are wise enough for the universal.

I hope too that you yourself may find something to enjoy in the book.

Once war broke out however she supported the British war effort, adding ‘Prussians’ to the list of those for whom she had a pronounced distaste. A verse from 1942 suggests something of her attitude to race and religion:

Catholics, Prussians,
The Jews and the Russians,
All are a curse,
Or something worse.

Her son, desiring to free her from the taint of supporting the Nazis, argued that she had sent the poems to Hitler not because she supported him but because in her 'megalomania' she thought that she could singlehandedly prevent the war. It is certainly true that Stopes suffered from illusions of grandeur. In 1920 she dictated the following message to the Anglican Bishops:

“My Lords, I speak to you in the name of God. You are his priests. I am his prophet. I speak to you of the mysteries of man and woman.”

Marie Stopes (1880 - 1958)
Perhaps more harmful in the long term was her practice of prescribing contraceptives and giving medical advice despite having no medical qualifications whatsoever. She was willing to experiment on the poor. She tried to persuade a doctor, Norman Hoare, to fit a contraceptive device called the ‘gold pin’. When he refused because he had previously seen that this device could cause abortion and infections she urged him to experiment with it anyway; ‘take on two or three cases, which you should watch carefully, and if these yielded unsatisfactory results we would then drop it[1] ‘I teach doctors’ she once proclaimed.[2] It is generally argued, based on her statements and actions on the subject, that Marie Stopes was opposed to abortion. Whether this is substantially true or not she was prepared to experiment with a contraceptive method with potential abortifacient effects.[3]

Marie Stopes dedicated her life to preventing the conception of human beings that she considered to be of inferior worth. She was prepared to advocate compulsory sterilisation and dangerous experiments on women in pursuit of that end. By the time of her death in 1958 the birth control ideology was well established and the legalisation of abortion at hand. In 1975 Marie Stopes International was founded to advance her legacy. She herself may not have been an advocate of abortion but this organisation, which is proud to bear her name and build on her achievements, certainly is. Today it has 629 clinics across 40 countries all of which are dedicated to the prevention and elimination of human life.

The Good Counsel Network hold a daily vigil outside Marie Stopes' original birth control clinic, on Whitfield Street in central London, which is now an abortion clinic operated by Marie Stopes International.

If you would like to join the vigil please see here for more information.


[1] Ann Farmer, Prophets and Priests: The Hidden Face of the Birth Control Movement, p47
[2] Ibid, p45
[3] According to Ann Farmer there were cases where Stopes referred women for abortion, Prophets and Priests, p52

Monday, 23 April 2012

Letter to the Guardian reveals the sad effects of abortion for parents

The Guardian is well known for being the mouthpiece of the abortion lobby in the UK. Many of the leading figures amongst the pro-death campaign have columns with the Guardian, such as: Ann Furedi (Bpas), Clare Murphy (Bpas), Kate Smurthwaite (stand-up comedienne/odd-jobs for a collective of abortion and pro-abortion feminist groups), and Lisa Hallgarten (Education for Choice). The number of its pro-abortion journalists are legion. The Guardian out-does itself in churning out torrents of misinformation about pro-life groups and our activities to end abortion and support parents in need. You can rely on the Guardian to dress up its pro-abortion ideology and rhetoric as law, science, and fact.

However, I recently found this letter to the Guardian. It's from a man whose wife had an abortion early on in their marriage. The article is very sad. However, I'm glad this man wrote to the Guardian, and that the Guardian published it. The testimony of post-abortive men and women is an important witness to the appalling effects that abortion has upon men and women. We don't know all the details about the situation, so perhaps less is more, and let the letter speak for itself. 


If you're having trouble reading the letter, the text is reproduced below:
Post-abortive father: My wife and I got married seven years ago and haven't had sex since the honeymoon. We were financially very badly off and I didn't want to bring a life into this world if I couldn't provide for it, so my wife had an abortion. I've become overweight and unfit, and my wife has limited enthusiasm for anything that requires leaving the house. I tried to make love to her recently but it ended in me being more interested in the book I was reading. I'm a miserable non-father who wants nothing more than to produce offspring.
Dr. Connolly: The strain and loss you both experienced early in your relationship have had significant, ongoing ill-effects on your marriage. They also seem to have negatively affected your mental health. You may be suffering from depression, which can lead to a lowering of libido. Your wife may also be challenged by a mood disorder that may have been triggered by the abortion. Experiencing that type of loss can lead to deep sadness and a long-lasting period of mourning – for the partner as well as for the mother.

In my clinical experience, a lack of interest in sex is fairly common in the aftermath of abortion. However, the lack of sex in your relationship may be a symptom of some broader problems that require treatment. Act now, before it's too late to have a family. Without blaming, start expressing some of these deep feelings you are having – the sadness of bereavement and your strong desire
for fatherhood, and encourage your wife to do the same. Listen to each other, and mourn this loss together.
• Pamela Stephenson Connolly is a clinical psychologist and psychotherapist who specialises in treating sexual disorders.

Wednesday, 18 April 2012

Medics led the way in the nineteenth century pro-life movement


Pro-life groups often compare the great struggle for justice for the unborn with other historical social justice issues, most popularly slavery.

It came as something of a surprise to me that as well as looking to other movements for inspiration and ideas about how best to engage in this cause, we can also look to the historical pro-life movement. In the USA, long before the catastrophic abortion laws which were introduced in so many countries in the mid-twentieth centuries, abortion had already been a tragic reality which was opposed with some degree of success by a determined pro-life movement.

In the mid-nineteenth century abortions were common among married American Protestant women. In response to this in 1857 Dr Horatio Robinson Storer (pictured) founded the "physicians' crusade against abortion". Storer enlisted the support of the then young American Medical Association (AMA) and founded a committee on Criminal Abortion. In 1859 that committee presented a report to the AMA which called on physicians and the various political authorities to oppose abortion.

I urge you to read all of what is a short report, and I include below a few of the report's highlights:
"The heinous guilt of criminal abortion, however viewed by the community, is everywhere acknowledged by medical men."
"The first of these causes [of an increase in abortions] is a wide-spread popular ignorance of the true character of the crime - a belief, even among mothers themselves, that the foetus is not alive till after the period of quickening."
"As a profession we are unanimous in our condemnation of the crime."
"If through want of knowledge on a medical point, the slaughter of countless children now steadily perpetrated in our midst, is to be attributed, it is our duty, as physicians, and as good and true men, both publicly and privately, and by every means in our power, to enlighten this ignorance."
"In accordance, therefore, with the facts in the case, the Committee would advise that this body, representing, as it does, the physicians of the land, publicly express its abhorrence of the unnatural and now rapidly increasing crime of abortion; that it avow its true nature, as no simple offence against public morality and decency, no mere misdemeanor, no attempt upon the life of the mother, but the wanton and murderous destruction of her child."
Storer wrote a series of nine scientific articles on abortion, which were later turned into a book. He used his work to lobby state legislatures and he encouraged other medical professionals to do likewise. Many state and territorial legislatures passed laws protecting unborn children thanks in part to Storer's work. He also wrote books which were accessible to and targeted at the general public. Storer's work is credited with significantly reducing the number of abortions among married women, and thus saving many lives.

Storer was a pioneer not only in his defence of the unborn, but of gynaecology as a medical specialisation. He used his authority as an eminent man of medicine to defend the most vulnerable members of our society. 

Members of the medical community today can and should seek to use their professional knowledge for the common good of all members of society. When the Abortion Bill was being discussed in the UK early in 1967, the Royal College of Obstetrician's and Gynaecologists (RCOG) voted 192 to 5 against the bill. One member is even reported to have said that if the bill became law they would all emigrate on the grounds that it would turn them into compulsory state abortionists. Sadly, this opposition was not maintained within the medical community and the RCOG now requires all its members to cooperate with abortion.

The RCOG's policy on abortion is that:
"abortion and contraception are an integral part of comprehensive sexual and reproductive health services."
and also that:
"Practitioners cannot claim exemption from giving advice or performing the preparatory steps to arrange an abortion where the request meets the legal requirements. Such steps include referral to another doctor, as appropriate."
We must hope that through continued pro-life witness the RCOG will see the error of it's ways, and like Dr Storer, work to end the injustice of abortion. 

Further reading

A biography of Dr Storer Champion of Women and the Unborn Frederick N. Dyer, the cover of which is pictured above, is available on Amazon

It is also possible to read an essay by the same author online: 'Horatio Robinson Storer, M.D. and the Physicians’ Crusade Against Abortion'  

Tuesday, 17 April 2012

The Neo-Malthusian League and the origins of the birth control movement

We have previously considered the influence of the ideas of Thomas Robert Malthus on the pro-abortion movement. In this post we will consider the way in which the population control ideology developed after his death.

Charles Bradlaugh (1833-1891)
In 1877 an organisation called the Neo-Malthusian League was founded in the aftermath of the prosecution of Charles Bradlaugh and Annie Besant. Bradlaugh, founder of the National Secular Society, and Besant, a political radical, were prosecuted for republishing a book entitled Fruits of Philosophy, written by an American called Charles Knowlton, which described various methods of birth control. They were found guilty of publishing obscene material but were later acquitted on a legal technicality. The Neo-Malthusian League was founded to campaign for the right to publish information about contraceptive methods without fear of prosecution, and to advocate for the reduction of the birth rate by limitation of family size. It grew in influence under the leadership of three members of the same family, George Drysdale, his brother Charles Robert Drysdale and the latter’s son Charles Vickery Drysdale.

The League argued that war and poverty were caused by overpopulation and that it was therefore essential that the birth rate be reduced. Unlike Malthus, the League advocated artificial birth control as the best means of bringing this about. Celibacy and abstinence were rejected as ‘unhealthy’; sexual pleasure divorced from procreative responsibility was the end they sought. In his book Elements of Social Science, George Drysdale argued that ‘there could not be greater error’ than monogamous marriage.  The ‘laws of nature’ required ‘a variety of objects’ for sexual desire. Many members of the League believed that the poor must be put under pressure to reduce the number of children that they had. Annie Besant said that the first phase of their campaign must aim to ‘stamp with disapproval every married couple who selfishly overcrowd their home, to the injury of the community of which they are a part.’ This is certainly an attitude which prevails in our society today.

By the time the league was dissolved in 1927 many of its aims were well on their way to being met. Numerous influential members of the Labour Party were supporters of the League or of other population control groups such as Marie Stopes’s Society for Constructive Birth Control and Racial Progress. Activists such as these, supported by many Labour MPs, were successful in persuading the Labour Party to adopt a pro-birth control policy in 1926. There was initially some successful resistance from Catholics in the party but soon both the Labour and Conservative parties succumbed to the birth control agenda. From 1930 onwards it was permissible for birth control advice to be given at public health clinics. Birth control ‘clinics’, founded by organisations such as Marie Stopes and the Family Planning Association, began to spread, with the express intention of inducing women from poor backgrounds to use birth control. This was the beginning of a network of ‘clinics’ which now not only seek to prevent new life coming into existence but to destroy it during its earliest and most vulnerable stages. The organisations which now perform thousands of abortions every year are often the very same organisations that began by advocating birth control. 

Further Reading

Ann Farmer, Prophets and Priests: The Hidden Face of the Birth Control Movement,  (London, 2002)

Friday, 13 April 2012

Irish pro-life groups unite to oppose proposed abortion bill


Youth Defence reports that hundreds of women and children from throughout Ireland yesterday joined pro-life groups Youth Defence, Life Institute and Precious Life at the Dáil (the principal chamber of the Irish parliament) to tell politicians that the proposals to legalise abortion are not made in the name of women and that the evidence shows Irish women are safer without abortion.

The event was in response to a debate scheduled for the Dáil on a Private Members Bill proposed by Clare Daly and Mick Wallace which seeks to legalise abortion.

Spokeswoman Niamh Uí Bhriain of the Life Institute said:
"We're here to send an important message from the majority of Irish women to Enda Kenny and to every TD and Senator. We're mothers and daughters and sisters and grandmothers, and we know that women and children deserve better than abortion. Furthermore the record shows we are safer without abortion, so why are this group of politicians trying to introduce abortion in our name? It's unacceptable to misrepresent Irish women - and the truth about abortion - in this way."

Reports on Maternal Mortality in 2007 and 2010 by the UN's World Health Organisation said that Ireland, where abortion is illegal, is the safest place in the world for a mother to have a baby.



Forthcoming pro-life events you need to be at!


21st April: Helpers of God's Precious Infants (HGPI) vigil 
HGPI is a Roman Catholic pro-life organisation. The vigil consists of Mass, prayerful procession to the abortion facility, Rosary and hymns, then the return procession. Refreshments are served at the end. The vigil on the 21 April will be held in Essex. Click on the link for full details. http://bit.ly/I9u9QM


22nd April: SPUC run the London Marathon
Veronica Price is a member of SPUC, a mother to 4 children, and a lover of sport. Veronica will be running in the 2012 London Marathon to raise money for SPUC's work in defending unborn children. The London Marathon is a landmark occasion in the sporting calendar, and sees the streets of London filled with runners and wheelchair users ranging from world class to fun-loving amateurs looking to complete an arduous 26.2 mile run, many raising money for charities at the same time. You can read Veronica's story, support her with a donation, and line the streets on the day. http://bit.ly/HDlJYn

27th April: 44th Anniversary of the enactment of the Abortion Act in the UK.  
This is a sad milestone for pro-lifers in the UK. It will be 44th years since the Abortion Act of 1967 came into effect on 27th April 1968. Since then more than 7 million unborn children have been killed at the hands of abortionists. The abortion industry has grown in size and wealth. This day would be a good day to do something pro-life in your family, parish, town or city where you live. If you're religious, it's a special day to pray for an end to abortion. SPUC has launched the 9 Million Children Campaign which could be put into effect on this day. Order the leaflet from SPUC and distribute it in your area.

27th April: Helpers of God's Precious Infants vigil Maidstone
To mark to enactment of the Abortion Act, HGPI will hold a peaceful prayer vigil in Maidstone, Kent. The vigil is being lead by Catholic bishop John Hines. http://bit.ly/IGFbhF

28th April: SPUC Pro-life Chains 
Public act of pro-life witness in towns and cities around the UK. Pro-life campaigners will give silent witness to unborn babies killed in the 44 years since the implementation of the Abortion Act, as well as to the hurt caused to women by abortion.On Saturday 28 April, supporters of the Society for the Protection of Unborn Children (SPUC) will form chains, in many towns and cities around the UK, standing at intervals holding placards which bring home the reality of abortion. The event is known as the Pro-life Chains and will be held from 11am till 1pm. Details of practical support for pregnant and post-abortive mothers, fathers, and relatives are available to the general public. Click the link for details of how to organise a pro-life chain in your area. http://bit.ly/I9AP1k 

28th April: HLI Family and Life conference
Hear a line-up of expert speakers from the UK and America, talking about population, family, abortion, and contraception, and why we need to keep building a culture of life. Organised by Family Life International. http://bit.ly/IxW6WX

28th April: LifeSiteNews 15th Anniversary Gala
LifeSiteNews.com has reached an impressive milestone: 15 years serving the pro-life and pro-family cause! To celebrate, they are hosting a Gala celebration on April 28th at the Washington Dulles Hilton Hotel outside of Washington D.C. in Herndon, VA. LifeSite  realise that many will be unable to attend the event due to its geographical location, date, or financial reasons to name a few. But they still want you to be a part of the festivities because they would have nothing to celebrate were it not for the readers and supporters. Please check out their “Virtual” ticket options for how you can still be a part of the celebration. Check out our website: WWW.LSNGALA.COM   http://on.fb.me/HCBAa4

5th-6th May: Catholic Medical Association symposium and AGM
The CMA will be holding its annual symposium and AGM at Hinsley Hall Leeds from 5-6 May. The theme of this year's symposium is "A light shines in the darkness: Catholic perspectives on mental health". This is a useful opportunity for Catholic doctors, nurses, and all health care workers. http://bit.ly/HCvTsy 

19th May-27th July: SPUC Olympic/Paralympic torch pro-life campaign  
SPUC are leading an important pro-life outreach in major cities through which the Olympic torch will travel. Arthur Woood, a member of SPUC, has put together a programme to take the pro-life message to the heart of the Olympic games and into the hearts of the British public. Arthur will be leading an act of pro-life witness in several towns and cities around the country. Pro-lifers will be handing out a specially designed leaflet and holding Olympic torch placards. Contact Aurthur to bring the pro-life message to your area during the Olympic torch tour. http://bit.ly/IiEFrc

14th July: Good Counsel Network sponsored pro-life walk
Get your trainers and Lycra on, adjust your sweatbands, and walk 10 miles for the unborn, from Wandsworth to Wapping. The day begins at 10. If you haven't done a fundraiser event before, this would be a good place to start. Prizes for whoever raises the most money. Everyone gets to relax at the end! Contact Conor Caroll for details. http://on.fb.me/IiGnZB

Mid August- September: SPUC internship programme Summer
The annual SPUC internship programme will begin after the Olympic games this year. There are usually 2-3 places available. The internship Lasts for 7 weeks. To apply please email or post a covering letter and CV to danielblackman@spuc.org.uk. All applications are reviewed, and candidates are invited for an interview. Successful interns will gain experience of in depth research, campaign planning, learning about pro-life concerns at the UK and European political institutions, amongst other things. http://bit.ly/HNoRyg  

Ongoing: Good Counsel Network Internship programme.
GCN have just begun their internship programme. It is based in London, and lasts between 2-3 months. Accommodation provided. GCN can offer a variety of roles, including prayer vigil coordination, counselling services, helping mothers with housing, and fundraising. Contact Conor Caroll for details of how to apply. http://bit.ly/Hu8PHR

Ongoing: Good Counsel Network Daily vigil 
The Good Counsel Network hold a daily prayer vigil outside Marie Stopes International, Whitfield Street, central London. The vigil starts at 9am and runs until 1.30pm, Monday-Friday. There is also weekly pro-life vigil on Wednesdays outside the Bpas Bedford Square, also in Central London. For details about either of these, please contact Conor Carrol. More prayer volunteers are always welcome. info@goodcounselnetwork.freeserve.co.uk or call 020 7723 1740

Ongoing: SPUC 9 Million Children Campaign
SPUC has launched the 9 Million Children Campaign. We estimate that by the fiftieth anniversary of the 1967 Abortion Act coming into effect (27 April 2018) nine million unborn children will have been killed by abortion. By April 2018, we must aim to build a campaign enabling us to deliver nine million leaflets to nine million homes in order to convince the British public that abortion is a tragedy that they must help to bring to an end. Contact SPUC to order the leaflet and start distributing it in your area. The need is urgent.

Thursday, 12 April 2012

Pro-abortionists have a lot of tough questions to answer. Pro-lifers should be asking them

It is common for those who promote abortion to describe those who identify themselves as pro-life as being ignorant or unenlightened.

It is worth remembering that it is those who either advocate abortion, or do nothing to oppose it who are the ones with all the explaining to do.


Science is clear that life begins at conception. Those who are pro-choice/pro-abortion employ various methods to justify their position that it's morally acceptable to kill unborn babies. They also frequently claim that pro-lifers are being immoral in holding that abortion is wrong, and for working to bring a stop to it. A striking recent example of this was the coordinated shouting of "shame on you" directed by a pro-abortion group at the recent 40 Days for Life London vigil to end abortion.

However, I have noticed that very few people who describe themselves as being pro-choice/pro abortion are comfortable with being told about the details of abortion. They are uncomfortable about abortion methods, they are uncomfortable about the instruments used to perform abortions, they are uncomfortable about seeing images of unborn children developing in the womb (or videos) and they are uncomfortable about seeing images of aborted children.

There are many who are ignorant of these realities. If you are one of them then consider visiting each of the above links. If you don't wish to visit the links, then ask yourself how it is that you can be in favour of something, but be unprepared to look at and read about the thing that you support.

If you or anybody you know has been involved with or affected by abortion you should know that there are people who can help.

Wednesday, 11 April 2012

UN Doha Declaration on the Family protects life and defends the family

On 6 December 2004, during the United Nations 59th general Assembly, the 10th anniversary of 1994’s International Year of the family, pro-life and pro-family forces gained what they consider to be a huge victory as the United Nations ratified the Doha declaration on the family.

The Doha International Conference for the Family convened in Doha, Qatar, on November 29-30, 2004 to explore and analyse the implications of Article 16(3) of the UN’s Universal Declaration of Human Rights which proclaims:
“the family is the natural and fundamental group unit of society and is entitled to protection by society and the state.” 
The Doha Declaration further affirmed pro-family positions including:
“Every individual has the right to life” 
“Evaluate and reassess government population policies, particularly in countries with below replacement birthrates”
“Parents should choose what kind of education they give their children” 
The Conference attracted hundreds of participants from different countries and cultures, including members of parliaments, scholars, and various non-governmental organisations. Prominent religious speakers included the late Pope Shenouda III of the Egyptian Coptic Church, Orthodox Jewish Rabbi Daniel Lapin, and the late Alfonzo Cardinal Lopez Trujillo of the Catholic Church. The wife of the Emir of Qatar opened the Conference with a speech praising the family as a “sacred institution” that forges a “strong bond between males and females which conforms to human nature in bearing and raising new generations.” Sheikha Mozah Bint Nasser Al-Missned warned against current attempts “under the guise of modernity” to redefine the traditional religious and cultural understanding of the family. The former Prime Minister of Malaysia, Dr. Mahatir Mohamad, also delivered a speech in which he called the family the “pillar which stabilises human society and sustains the good values in human cultures,” and linked emerging attempts to redefine the family with the “moral collapse of the human society.” Along with some other Muslim speakers, Mohamad also stressed the need for Muslims to become more involved in protecting the family, since in the age of globalisation and the mass media, even the Muslim family is showing “cracks in its structure.” 

Dr. Gary Becker, Nobel laureate in economics and author of A Treatise on the Family, echoed Sheika Mozah’s call for a “mentality” that views the family not “as a burden to development, but rather as a driving force behind it.”

William L. Saunders Jnr, the distinguished US attorney and bioethicist, also spoke at the Doha International Conference for the Family in Qatar. He showed how the Universal Declaration of Human Rights recognizes that the family is based upon marriage between a man and a woman and that the family exists prior to the state, is the foundation of the state, and that the state is obligated to protect it.  He also explained how the Universal Declaration of Human Rights upholds parents as the primary educators of their children – and how this came about as a direct result of recollections of the Nazi regime's efforts to turn Germany's renowned educational system into a mechanism for indoctrinating the young with the government's programme.

If your question is: "why is this relevant to pro-life concerns"? my answer would be "how long do you have"? Being pro-life doesn't only mean anti-abortion, anti-IVF, anti-euthanasia, although opposing these attacks on human life are of paramount importance and urgency. However, who of us could live for being only "anti"? Defending, promoting, enjoying natural marriage and its openness to children is part of being pro-life. Marriage and family correspond to the deepest needs and dignity of the person. The family, based on marriage (which is between one man and one woman) can be called the sanctuary of life. It is the vital, foundational, and essential basis for society and the global human family. It is the natural society in which husband and wife are called to give themselves in love and in the gift of life. Authority, stability, and a life of relationships within the family constitute the foundations for freedom, security, and fraternity within society. The family is the community in which, from childhood, one can learn moral values. The family should live in such a way that its members learn to care and take responsibility for the young, the old, the sick, the handicapped, and the poor. The family, built on conjugal love, is the best environment for children to be raised and educated.

Embryo destruction by IVF, eugenics via pre-implantation genetic diagnosis, abortion, contraception, child abuse, anti-life sexual indoctrination, divorce, mistreatment and neglect of sick and elderly family members, the refusal of intergenerational solidarity, euthanasia, and economic policies that penalise the family and exalt materialism and lust for money, are all attacks on the family. Often, those attacks are carried out in the very heart of and with the complicity of the family,  which by its nature is called to be the "sanctuary of life". That is another reason why it is essential for pro-lifers to present the pro-life vision as one that includes the defence and promotion of marriage and the family. Critics of the pro-life movement often accuse us of not caring about children once they are born. This is not true. We do care, and we say that the best way to care is to promote and defend the institution which is clearly shown to be the best way to care for children – the family. If we wish our pro-life witness to be effective and credible it is absolutely essential that we defend family life.

Despite the unanimous support of 149 countries present at the 59th UN general assembly to ratify the Doha Declaration, there were 14 (absent) dissenters, including Canada and the European Union. The EU dissented for the Declaration, also preventing its own members Italy and Poland, who backed the Declaration, from supporting it. The EU thus violated its own mandate on the principle of subsidiarity concerning the policies of its member states. Below is the official version of the Doha Declaration on the Family, which can also be viewed at the UN documents library.

Our thanks goes to the pro-life reporters who provided details of the Doha meeting.

Thursday, 5 April 2012

Why SPUC defends traditional marriage

In November 2011 SPUC's National Council resolved that SPUC would campaign against the attempted redefinition of marriage by the present government.

The government is planning to introduce legislation which would allow two men, or two women, to enter into a union that would be legally identical to the authentic marriage of one man and one woman. The position taken by SPUC is that this would undermine the traditional understanding of marriage which in turn would put unborn children at even greater risk of abortion.

The basic building block of society is the family. All human communities, whether they be small villages or large cities, simple tribes or industrialised nations, are made up of interconnected families. The family is our first community and we belong to this community before we belong to any other. The family therefore precedes all political structures and identities. The source and foundation of the family is the bond of marriage. We can define marriage as the lifelong exclusive union of one man and one woman, ordered towards the bringing forth of children and the mutual love and support of the spouses.  These are usually referred to as the ‘procreative’ and the ‘unitive’ ends of marriage and are closely connected.

The marriage bond is thus ideally formed to provide children with the love and security they need to grow and flourish. A family founded on marriage is by far the safest place for children to be conceived and brought up. In the United Kingdom infants conceived outside of marriage are four to five times more likely be aborted than those conceived within marriage. It is clear therefore that anything that undermines the traditional understanding of marriage may put unborn children at risk.

Why does so-called ‘same-sex marriage’ undermine authentic marriage?   

The bond of marriage is founded on the complementarity of the sexes. This complementarity between men and women is emotional, social and intellectual, as well as physical and sexual. The marriage bond is formed when one man and one woman freely commit themselves to a lifelong and exclusive sexual union, which is ordered towards procreation, even if children do not always result. While it is honoured and exalted by most religions, it is in the first place a natural union, fundamental to human existence and recognised in all times and in all places. Until recently this traditional understanding of marriage was an unquestioned part of human life. It is only recently, due to the influence and exertions of a small but powerful group of committed ideologues, that doubts have been planted in the minds of ordinary men and women.

The marriage bond as described above cannot be entered into by two men or two women because they do not possess the necessary complementarity.  By their very nature, sexual acts between members of the same sex cannot bring forth new life, and, indeed, are not acts of sexual intercourse properly so-called. Neither is there the necessary emotional, social or intellectual complementarity. The term ‘marriage’ therefore simply cannot be applied to a relationship so different to that which it is has traditionally defined. The misuse of the word marriage will inevitably lead to further confusion about the nature and purpose of marriage, resulting in a decrease in the number of stable married relationships and an increase in the number of abortions.

The state exists to further the common good of all under its authority, and can and should exercise its authority within its legitimate bounds. However it does not possess the power to create its own reality or alter unchanging truths. Marriage and the family pre-exist all political structures and thus cannot be redefined at will by any government no matter how many laws they pass or how many votes they win. It is in no way ‘discriminatory’ or ‘homophobic’ to state the simple and honest truth that marriage remains, and will always remain, the exclusive lifelong union of one man and one woman. It is in fact essential that we, the next generation of the pro-life movement, are prepared to see the interconnection between attacks on marriage and the family and attacks on nascent human life. By defending the traditional understanding of marriage, we help to defend many generations of unborn children yet to be conceived.

Tuesday, 3 April 2012

Department for International Development in bed with the porn industry

My last post drew attention to the Department for International Development (DFID) and its latest project to promote abortion and contraception in the developing world, via its buddies Marie Stopes International (MSI) and International Projects Assistance Services (Ipas). The project is called Preventing Maternal Deaths from Unwanted Pregnancy (PMDUP). Reading through the business plan revealed the following: 

The PMDUP CEO Coordination Group:

This will be led by MSI, and include the CEOs of Ipas and DKT. The CEO Coordination Group will:
  • Oversee the efficient management of the programme by ensuring that strong supervisory and management systems are in place as well as reviewing yearly and six-monthly reports.
  • Ensure appropriate engagement with the evaluation team.
  • Provide leadership for good functioning of the partnership by inspiring and requiring programme innovation, communications and results, strong synergies and economies of scale and VFM.
  • Provide oversight to ensure that technical quality is monitored and standards adhered to.
  • Serve as a senior communications channel within the consortium and externally for dissemination of learning and evidence-based practices.

This is just another example of what has already been pointed out: the very wealthy and very large abortion organisations are running the show for themselves, obviously using our taxes to fund their ideology against the poor and the unborn. There is something else to note - the involvement of DKT International (named after D. K. Tyagi, who saturated India with contraception during the sixties using mass media).

Tim Black and Philip Harvey (pictured left) met at the University of North Carolina, when the two were pursuing post-graduate studies in family planning. Black and Harvey shared a common ideology, and quickly became best friends. Their first joint venture in the sexual revolution was a mail-order condom business - illegal at the time. Black went on to found MSI, which proudly stated at a 2007 conference "we do illegal abortions all over the world". One of the 5 appointed trustees of MSI is a man named Philip Harvey - Black giving his best bud a pat on the back. Harvey went on to found Population Services International (PSI) - abortion and contraceptive devices being its reason for being. Harvey abandoned PSI soon after founding it, for pastures new.

Harvey went on to found and continues as CEO of Adam & Eve, rated America’s biggest mail-order and online retailer of condoms,  pornographic films, and 18,000 other items of porn paraphernalia – with annual sales of $100 million dollars. 25% - that’s $25 million dollars - goes towards Harvey’s other business called DKT International, the same DKT that will sit on the British government's PMDUP coordination group. What does DKT do? Here are some facts from from their website:

  • In 2011 DKT sold over a half-billion condoms, almost 70 million cycles of oral contraceptives, 12 million injectable contraceptives, 800,000 IUDs, over 10 million misoprostol pills, and 800,000 medical abortion packs, as well as emergency contraception, hormonal implants, and manual vacuum aspiration kits
  • In Mozambique, Ethiopia, and India, DKT is making manual vacuum aspiration kits and chemical abortion drugs increasingly available to rural and hard-to-reach consumers.  
  • DKT was the first organisation in India to run adverts on national television about medical abortion. You can see these advertisements on YouTube
  • More than 40,000 midwives have been trained in IUD and implant insertion and removal in Indonesia
  • In the Philippines and Ethiopia, DKT provides an estimated 50 percent of all modern family planning methods
  • DKT is the largest private provider of contraceptives and family planning services in the developing world...

...All in large part funded by the pornographic business Harvey has run since 1971, and now DKT will help manage the British government's campaign against families, mothers, and unborn children in poor countries throughout the world. Put simply, DFID are in bed with porn barons and death peddlers.



Monday, 2 April 2012

40 Days for Life vigil with Bishop Alan Hopes was both an inspiration and a wake-up call

Last Friday evening Bishop Alan Hopes led London's largest ever 40 Days for Life vigil for an end to abortion.

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The front of the vigil. Photo by Joseph Shaw.
In response to the success of the 40 Days for Life campaign a loud and aggressive counter-demonstration was organised by a pro-abortion group. Some media sources have claimed that the counter-demonstration was attended by more people than the vigil in defence of life. As far as I could see the pro-abortion group was approximately half the size of the 400-500 pro-lifers in attendance. Joseph Shaw has published a series of pictures which compare the two groups.

This event was both uplifting and a wake-up call. Uplifting because it was wonderful to be amongst so many people praying for an end to abortion. Uplifting because of the courage of Bishop Hopes in leading the vigil in the face of such hostility. But the aggression of the opposition served as a wake-up call and a reminder of the urgency of the pro-life cause. None of the aggression mustered outside the abortion centre on Friday can compare to the violence of abortion. The vigil on Friday showed the strength of the pro-life movement when roused into action, and our great potential to powerfully oppose this violence. It is crucial for the sake of unborn babies and mothers that we continue to increase in our determination to bring an end to abortion.

The campaign has now come to an end and will resume again in the autumn. Robert Colqhoun, the 40 Days for Life London campaign director, has published a blog-post with the highlights from this campaign, in London and throughout the country. This evening there is a closing party in Pimlico. Between now and the next 40 Days for Life campaign  there are lots of other vigils which need your support. The Good Counsel Network organise a daily vigil in London and the Helpers of God's Precious Infants organise vigils around the country and throughout the whole year.
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