Thursday, 7 February 2013

Listen to top bioethicist John Fleming address issue of pre-viability inductions

Dr John Fleming, SPUC's bioethical consultant, is currently in the British Isles, addressing meetings of Catholic clergy and others on two of the top ethical issues today: same-sex marriage and abortion in Ireland. On the latter subject, Fr Fleming spoke at several meetings in Ireland about the issue of induced delivery of pre-viable unborn children, on which I have blogged recently:
You can listen to Fr Fleming's presentation on the issue recorded in Dublin, either directly below or on SPUC's channel on YouTube. The video consists of an audio recording accompanied by slides.

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Wednesday, 6 February 2013

Read SPUC's tweets from yesterday's same-sex marriage debate

Below I reproduce the tweets @spucprolife by Anthony Ozimic, SPUC's communications manager, during yesterday's Second Reading debate on the Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Bill:
  • Miller doesn't understand that secondary/incidental changes to marriage law doesn't change timeless core of marriage = heterosexual
  • Miller quotes opinion of QCs Kennedy, Lester and Pannick. Unconvincing: they're the usual suspects from the pro-gay/anti-family lobby.
  • No mention in Miller's introductory speech of the unique reason why society privileges marriage: protection of children, born & unborn
  • Lot of fluffiness from rad fem Yvette Cooper re confetti, biscuits, parties, rubber chickens etc. Just killed her PM ambitions, one hopes.
  • Repeated confusion btwn benefits of marriage (commitment, stability) and nature of marriage (complementary union ordered towards children)
  • Mention of books written for children promoting gay relationships. Coming to a school near you if marriage (& thus family) redefined.
  • Yvette Cooper warns anti-SSM churches that "religious freedom goes both ways". Must not prevent state from redefining marriage.
  • Yvette Cooper confuses legal reforms of practice of marriage with false idea that core of marriage (i.e. heterosexual) can change.
  • Discredited Marxist theory of social change being used to justify what even the original Marxists didn't dream of (gay marriage).
  • Robert Flello MP: Marriage more than just love & commitment. Gay marriage redefines everyone's marriage by reducing it to a relationship.
  • Steve Gilbert MP defames upholders of marriage status quo as "those who would hoard privilege". More souped-up Marxist ramblings.
  • Sir Roger Gale MP: assurances that civil partnerships would not lead to same-sex marriage have been broken.
  • Natascha Engel MP: gay couples can raise children just as well as straight couples. Thus fathers and mothers are just interchangeable carers
  • Nick Herbert MP also confuses reforms of secondary aspects of marriage law with abolishing fundamental nature & purpose of marriage
  • Stephen Doughty MP implied that it was the state's prerogative to extend marriage. But marriage doesn't belong to the state.
  • Edward Leigh MP: we must be careful to ensure that law and reality do not conflict. Gay marriage bill tries to change essence of marriage.
  • Gay marriage bill is not evolution but revolution, says Edward Leigh MP. Marriage exists for sake of children. Not just for love or sex.
  • Pro-SSM MPs rattled that their seats now in danger at the next election. We like rattling.
  • Jim Shannon MP: letters against gay marriage = largest mail-bag I've received in all my years as MP and MLA.
  • Simon Hughes MP used Lincoln film to draw historical lesson re gay marriage. He needs to read real history not the Hollywood spin.
  • Craig Whittaker MP: marriage already being eroded so state shouldn't be making situation worse by changing nature of marriage
  • Stephen Timms: marriage exists for children but SSM bill barely mentions children.
  • Gay relationships are not the same as marriage, they are different, says Stephen Timms MP.
  • Clear implication of Fiona Mactaggart MP interjection is that gay marriage will redefine the family by redefining marriage
  • Not exactly the most intelligent or original speech being given by Emma Reynolds MP re gay marriage
  • John Glen MP: received incredible vitriol simply for upholding marriage as it is.
  • David Lammy MP repeating his low-quality performance back during the Mental Capacity Bill. Comparing anti-SSM to racism. What a bore.
  • Chris Bryant MP conspicuously omits Book of Common Prayer text: "First, [marriage] was ordained for the procreation of children" @His_Grace
  • William McCrea MP: quoting Bible in Parliament often met with laughter, scorn, intolerance by MPs. Biblical marriage has served UK well.
  • MT @RhoslynThomas: BBC radio 4 playing the wedding march as they announce the SSM bill.
  • Stewart Jackson MP: comparing opposition to gay marriage to racism is complete nonsense.
  • Catholic adoption agencies "smashed on the altar of political correctness", says Stewart Jackson MP
  • David Simpson MP: neither Parliament nor Government has the (moral) jurisdiction to redefine marriage
  • Sarah Wollaston MP lowers debate by wheeling out old case of Alan Turing's chemical castration and suicide. Emotional blackmail.
  • Ian Paisley Jnr MP: Government cannot change nature. Refining marriage is a nonsense which will damage marriage.
  • Willie Bain MP claiming maj. support for SSM among Catholics. But such surveys usually don't distinguish btwn practising RCs and lapsed RCs
  • Andrew Selous MP quotes Jesus' definition of marriage as between man & woman. Not merely a cultural norm but God's design from Creation.
  • Matthew Offord MP: a flexible redefinition of marriage will lead to calls for further redefinitions e.g. polygamy, polyamory
  • Eric Ollerenshaw MP should've studied the canon law and practice of the Catholic Church re marriage rather than ramble incoherently about it
  • Pro-SSM MP Brooks Newmark quotes Orwell's Animal Farm. But Orwell would have opposed the state's power-grab of marriage from the people
  • Andrea Leadsom MP: no mandate and no public clamour for same-sex marriage
  • Bob Blackman MP: I've received 1000 letters against gay marriage, only 6 in favour
  • Richard Drax MP: element of token politics in parliamentary push to redefine marriage
  • Teachers who refuse to teach lessons about gay marriage will be disadvantaged, says Richard Drax MP
  • Equalities spokeswoman Kate Green caricatures traditional definition of marriage as religious. Repeats nonsense that marriage evolves
  • MPs now voting on whether to give the same-sex marriage bill a second reading
  • 400 ayes, 175 noes on same-sex marriage bill 2nd reading
  • MPs now voting on the government's programme motion (timetable of forthcoming stages of the bill)
  • RT ‏@Gillibrand #marriagevote Parliament has just voted to defy natural law, acting way beyond their powers.
  • MT @ProtectthePope: Shame on House of Commons - 400 for same-sex marriage, 175 against. Children will pay the price.
  • MT @labourwhips: Preliminary figues suggest Cameron failed to get majority of Tory MPs. 139 voting No, 132 Yes.
  • MT @LouiseMensch: David Cameron secures his place in history. > As PM who wrecked marriage in law for generations as yet unborn.
  • Programme motion: ayes 499, 55 noes
  • RT ‏@c4mtweets Blog» C4M delighted by the scale of the Parliamentary opposition to redefining marriage bill: Res...  #C4M #Marriage
  • RT ‏@c4mtweets Blog» Gay marriage vote, ‘a disaster for Cameron’ says C4M: Tonight, 175 MPs voted against the Bi...  #C4M #Marriage
  • Pro- #family MPs fight back in same-sex #marriage debate … #prolife
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Don’t let Red Nose Day leave you red-faced

The annual Red Nose Day returns on 15 March. I’ve blogged before about why pro-lifers should boycott raising money for Red Nose Day. Raising money for Red Nose Day means that some of that money will go to charities and projects that are inimical to building a culture that respects all human life from conception. Red Nose Day has made, and continues to make, grants that fund groups that advocate and promote abortion, contraception and same-sex marriage, such as the International Planned Parenthood Federation (IPPF) and the Terrence Higgins Trust.

No one wants to be a spoil-sport when it comes to fundraising for worthy causes, a good thing in itself. However, fundraising efforts should not be spoilt by having the money used to fund the destruction of human life. I urge schools, colleges, universities, places of work, parishes etc to simply boycott Red Nose Day, and pick a worthy charity or two for which to raise money instead. Don’t let Red Nose Day leave you red-faced - get the facts.

Below are just a few examples of groups and projects funded recently by Red Nose Day, found on its website:
  • A grant of £374, 694 was given to the International Planned Parenthood Federation (IPPF) in January 2011 for work in Swaziland, Mozambique and Ethiopia. IPPF's 2011 financial report says that IPPF affiliates carried out over 1.5 million abortion-related procedures in that year. Also in 2001, IPPF launched “It’s all one curriculum”, a sinister programme to indoctrinate children into the culture of death.
  • A grant was made to African Initiatives (Ghana) in 2011 for £248,200. This money is being used to fund sexual and reproductive health projects aimed at teen girls
  • The Terrence Higgins Trust (THT) was given £72,875.
  • Save the Children, which supports abortion and promotes contraception, was given approximately £3.8 million for projects in Rwanda; £1 million for India; £0.9 million for Bangladesh; and £0.25 million for both Brazil and the UK respectively.
  • Barnardo's was given £165,000 in May 2011. Barnardo's runs the Young Womens London Project which offers a 'sexual health service'. Through the service "young women can access a nurse for free condoms, contraception (including emergency contraception) pregnancy testing and advice about abortion/termination." The Barnardo's website recommends the websites of Marie Stopes International and the Family Planning Association, two of the UK's leading abortion agencies.
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Tuesday, 5 February 2013

Pro-family MPs fight back in same-sex marriage debate

The government's Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Bill was given a second reading in the House of Commons today by 400 votes to 175. Pro-family MPs fought back against the same-sex marriage agenda. The strength of the opposition to the bill was larger than expected, and came largely from the governments own back-bench MPs. The bill now goes to Committee for further scrutiny.

The debate lasting over six hours concentrated on the government's justifications for introducing the bill - equality and justice, and the issue of forcing churches to undertake same sex 'marriages'. MPs promoting same-sex marriage said that civil partnerships were not now a sufficient provision for same-sex couples, despite assurances given during legislation, they now wanted same-sex couples to have the legal status and terminology of 'marriage'. They argued that this was part of a long-term historical move. However, they also reacted against suggestions that there would be future moves to redefine marriage to include three or more people (polygamy).

Commenting on the debate, Paul Tully, SPUC's general secretary  told the media:
"We are indebted to the pro-family MPs who fought back to defend marriage in this evening's debate. This was a dark day for marriage and the family, which will suffer severe and long-term effects if this legislation is eventually passed. Future generations of children would suffer as a result. So the fight to defend real marriage will and must go on. We call upon the millions of people who value marriage to continue to lobby parliamentarians to resist the bill.

Several MPs, notably Sir Roger Gale MP, pointed to the broken assurances given during the passage of the Civil Partnerships Bill in 2004. Parliament was assured that civil  partnership legislation was not a precursor to gay 'marriage.' MPs who had given those assurances are now saying that civil partnerships were part of a long-term shift in social views. However, those MPs rejected with vitriol any suggestion - before it was even mentioned in the debate -  that redefining marriage might lead to further changes such as legal polygamy.

MPs opposed to redefining marriage on this basis were compared to supporters of segregation and apartheid, and reference was even made to the concentration camps.

The critics of same-sex marriage were measured and effective in the debate. SPUC is encouraged that the relevance of marriage to the welfare of children was raised by a number of pro-marriage MPs. These included Robert Flello, Edward Leigh, Stephen Timms, Cheryl Gillan and  John Glen. They pointed to the unique capacity of a marriage of man and woman to generate children, and the advantage of children being raised by their natural parents. This was the first time that these issues have become prominent in the parliamentary debate, and it is important that MPs increase the attention paid to children in future stages of the bill.

Edward Leigh MP noted in the debate that the possibility of children was the rationale for the state supporting marriage. If children are left out of the picture, there is no longer any compelling reasons for the state to support marriage. That is the reason why the bill threatens to damage, not strengthen, marriage as an institution."
SPUC's position paper on why it campaigns against same-sex marriage can be read at

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Today's Gospel reading contains timely message for British MPs

"In the designs of Providence there are no mere coincidences" said Pope John Paul II on the first anniversary of the assassination attempt which so nearly ended his life.

For me, it's no mere coincidence that today's Gospel reading on the feast of St Agatha, contains a timely message for British MPs as they prepare to vote today on the Government's Marriage (Same Sex) Couples bill:
"And Pharisees came up to him and tested him by asking, 'Is it lawful to divorce one’s wife for any cause?' He answered, 'Have you not read that he who made them from the beginning made them male and female, and said, `For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh’? So they are no longer two but one flesh. What therefore God has joined together, let not man put asunder.” Matthew 19:3–12 (my emphasis)
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Monday, 4 February 2013

Left-wing French politician "descendant of oppressed people" attacks same-sex marriage

Before the second reading debate, in the House of Commons tomorrow, of the government's Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Bill, I hope that libertarians on the right and left of British politics will watch or read Bruno Nestor Azerot's recent moving speech in the French National Assembly. Bruno Nestor Azerot was elected to the French National Assembly on June 17, 2012 representing the department of Martinique. Here is an English summary of what he says:
I have supported all the bills advocated by the left until now.

Gay marriage is a dishonest concept because homosexuality is a matter belonging to the private sphere. Homosexuals need rights of legal protection, but marriage is a public institution.

This bill seeks to create a new norm for the institution of the family, which would change the fundamental rules on marriage, inheritance, consanguinity.

Society has given a legal framework to a natural gift: the union of a man and woman.

It is not the law that denies homosexuals the right to have children: it is nature.

Formerly, the purpose of marriage was regarded as procreation. Now marriage is regarded as a concept of sentiment.

Hedonistic individualism threatens to overthrow the personalist and socialist doctrine on which our whole society, underpinned by the values of solidarity, liberty, equality,has been based.

The family is the pivot of society. If this bill is passed, the family is liable to explode.

The “new equality” would create confusion between genders and upset the values on which our society is based.

Our responsibility to history is great.

The “new equality” would weaken the foundation of the society constructed after the abolition of slavery.

[At this point, the speaker becomes emotional, on one occasion thumping the podium with both hands.]

I am the descendant of an oppressed people. Slaves were denied the right to have children. Marriage was forbidden.

The “new equality” would be a denial of reality, establish a new oppression. The confusion of genders would undo the emancipation of women and lead to their oppression.

It would be forbidden to differentiate between men and women, at the risk of being accused of discrimination.

I affirm the right to marriage between the different, not the similar.

Rather than taking action to solve the problems of housing, youth unemployment, etc, we are instead directing our energies to the promotion of “gay marriage”.

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Round-up of recent news on same-sex marriage

There is a great deal of press reporting and comment on the government's iniquitous proposals to legalize same-sex marriage - proposals they did not dare to put to the British electorate at the general election.

Without implying approval for any of the content of stories/articles/papers at the links below, I reproduce for your information, some of the main stories which have appeared today and over the weekend concerning the Marriage (Same-Sex Couples) bill.

Church of England briefing for 2nd reading

Tory MP Caroline Dinenage: Banning gay couples from marrying ‘takes nothing away from their relationship’

Michael Gove op-ed supporting gay marriage

The blogger Cranmer on “Cameron’s gay marriage hypocrisy”

French National Assembly votes for gay marriage 249-97 in initial vote

Tory waverers press-ganged to back Cameron on gay marriage vote

Important essay by philosopher Roger Scruton and policy thinker Philip Blond against gay marriage

Telegraph editorial criticising David Cameron

Grassroots Tories 'betrayed' by David Cameron over same-sex marriage

New Archbishop of Canterbury challenges David Cameron on gay marriage

Two-thirds of Tory MPs could refuse to back gay marriage

Former Telegraph editor Charles Moore: “This Equality obsession is mad, bad and very dangerous”

Cameron makes last-ditch push for same-sex marriage

Only one voter in 14 says gay marriage is a priority issue that would be important in deciding next election

Melanie Phillips  Why failing to stand up for marriage is the reason Tories are always in crisis

Coalition for Marriage: Broken promises: Cameron said he had ‘no plans’ to redefine marriage

Coalition for Marriage 2nd reading briefing

Tobias Ellswood MP: I’m a ‘progressive Conservative’ but I will vote against gays marrying

Norman Tebbit: The same-sex marriage folly is symptomatic of the Coalition's inability to manage its affairs

Teachers free to speak out against same-sex marriage, insists Gove


Rebels line up to jilt Dave at the gay altar

Conservative party ripped apart by gay marriage vote

Gay voters have described David Cameron’s support for same-sex marriage as a ‘cynical political stunt’.

Final plea by Maria Miller to MPs to vote for gay marriage

Ex-MP Paul Goodman: The same-sex marriage bill - and why I'm cutting the money I give to the Party

David Burrowes MP in Huffington Post

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