31 agosto 2008

Democratic + Catholic + Senate = pro-abortion

Jim Brown - OneNewsNow - 8/27/2008
The head of the Catholic League says although there are more "wild-eyed" supporters of abortion in the Democratic Party than Delaware Senator Joe Biden, Barack Obama's vice-presidential running mate is a strong ally of the abortion lobby. He also has a suggestion for Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, a professed Catholic: review the basics of Catholicism.

Bill Donohue of the Catholic League laments that of the 16 Democratic senators who are Catholic, all are pro-abortion. Senator Joe Biden's approval rating from the National Abortion Rights Action League (NARAL) ranges from 75-to-100 percent.

Although in the past Biden has declared opposition to partial-birth abortion, Donohue notes that when the U.S. Supreme Court upheld a federal ban on the procedure, Biden criticized the decision.

"So put this together," he suggests. "You have a man running for president on the Democratic ticket who believes in selective infanticide, joined by a pro-abortion Catholic, with delegates at the convention which are wildly out of step with what Americans feel about this serious subject, and you have the Speaker of the House who doesn't even know what her religion teaches about the subject," Donohue contends.

He is referencing NBC's broadcast of Meet the Press on Sunday, when Speaker Pelosi (D-California) denied that the Catholic Church opposes abortion. NBC's Tom Brokaw asked Pelosi the same question that Barack Obama said was "above his pay grade."

"If he [Obama] were to come to you and say, 'Help me out here, Madame Speaker. When does life begin?' -- what would you tell him?" Brokaw inquired.

"I would say, as an ardent practicing Catholic, uh this is an issue that I have studied for a long time, and what I know is over the centuries, the doctors of the church have not been able to make that definition," Pelosi answered. "And...Saint Augustine said at three months. We don't know. The point is that it shouldn't have an impact on a woman's right to choose."

Donohue notes the Catechism of the Catholic Church points out that "human life must be respected and protected absolutely from the moment of conception."

"To misrepresent what the Catholic Church teaches on the subject, and which the Catechism has said that from the first century -- the Catholic Church has been opposed to abortion, that it's never changed its teaching on the subject -- and when she said 'I've been studying this for a long time,' one has to wonder about her cognitive abilities," the Catholic League spokesman contends.

According to Donohue, pro-abortion Catholics like Nancy Pelosi have, for years, been "living in a state of denial." He also says he is offering Pelosi a free copy of the book Catholicism for Dummies.

Update: The Associated Press is reporting today that Speaker Pelosi is not backing off the contentious comments she made about abortion during Sunday's Meet the Press on NBC. Her remark that "doctors of the church" have not been able to define when life begins prompted swift rebukes from Washington Archbishop Donald Wuerl and Denver Archbishop Charles Chaput, who said Catholic teaching has consistently condemned abortion.

Brendan Daly, a spokesman for Pelosi, says she based her statement on St. Augustine's view that "there cannot yet be said to be a live soul in a body that lacks sensation."

But Cardinal Justin Rigali and Bishop William Lori responded that "the church's moral teaching never justified or permitted abortion at any stage of development." And Chaput says abortion "is always gravely evil -- and so are the evasions employed to justify it."

Pelosi is no Catholic and she makes a mockery of my faith.

NBC to 'gay' journalists: 'Your victories are our victories'

from the files of "objective media"

Brian Fitzpatrick - 8/29/2008 - OneNewsNow.com
It's spelled NLGJA, but they pronounce it "Negligee." The National Lesbian and Gay Journalists Association (NLGJA) just held its annual convention here in Washington, DC, attracting hundreds of journalists – and ringing endorsements – from virtually every major publication and broadcaster in the news media.

In a full-page ad in the convention program, NBC Universal declared it is "proud to support NLGJA," under the bold headline: "YOUR VICTORIES ARE OUR VICTORIES."

After listening to speaker after speaker express hatred and contempt for political and religious conservatives while plotting how to advance the homosexual activist agenda through journalism, I'm left wondering whether Americans know the extent of the media's bias on homosexual issues. Do they know that the news media have thrown themselves fully behind the gay rights movement? Every major news organization sponsored the convention, bought space in the program, or had recruiting booths.

Hatred. NBC/National Journal reporter Matthew Berger said he experienced "reverse Stockholm syndrome" while on the campaign trail covering GOP religious conservative Mike Huckabee. "Stockholm syndrome" is what afflicts hostages who come to love their captors. If Berger's feelings changed after traveling with the Huckabee campaign, they went in the opposite direction. He acknowledged how difficult it is for a journalist to do his job when you "hate" the people you're covering. Berger said he was happy when he was transferred to the "gay-friendly" Rudolph Giuliani campaign.

Sending an outspoken activist like Berger, the former president of NLGJA's Washington, DC, chapter, to cover the Huckabee campaign is like sending a hard-right activist to cover the Obama campaign. What was NBC thinking? Maybe they had no choice. Does NBC have anybody on staff who doesn't hate religious conservatives?

Kerry Eleveld, news editor for a homosexual-themed magazine appropriately named The Advocate, described as "refreshing" Pastor Rick Warren's questions to the presidential candidates at the Saddleback Church forum on August 16. However, she also got big laughs when she said she understood how others might find the pastor's participation in the political process "nauseating."

Discussing attitudes toward homosexuality, Los Angeles Times opinion pages editor Robin Rauzi revealed Big Media contempt for the rubes in Flyover Country: "We feel our readers are ahead of where they are in Kansas City."

Political activism. During a sparsely attended (11 out of hundreds of conferees) session promoting objectivity in news coverage, a reporter from a Florida newspaper acknowledged his biases: the "public's right to know," and "equality." By "equality," he meant the homosexual activist political agenda. He revealed the tension that ought to have bedeviled every journalist at the conference: how to avoid ideological bias while covering the news.

On a partisan level, the conferees clearly leaned toward the Democrats. One speaker frankly admitted that the homosexual activist community generally expects most gays to be Democrats. Two panels touched on a partisan controversy raging in the homosexual community: James Kirchick, assistant editor of The New Republic, said gays are "shocked" and "up in arms" because the owner of "Manhunt," a very popular same-sex "dating" site, contributes money to presumptive GOP presidential candidate John McCain.

Even Patrick Sammon, president of the organization for homosexuals in the GOP, the Log Cabin Republicans, stressed that his organization does not support social conservatives. Sammon called former Pennsylvania GOP Sen. Rick Santorum a "bigot." Another journalist observed that "some people" in DC make it their business to "out" homosexual staffers of GOP congressmen with an "anti-gay agenda."

A panel supposedly intended to foster accurate coverage of religion quickly turned into a political strategizing session aimed at "retaking Christianity" from conservatives. The moderator and organizer of the panel, furniture magnate Mitchell Gold, is the founder of Faith in America, a homosexual activist organization targeting the religious community.

Gold said, "The single biggest [obstacle] to gays having equal rights in the country is religion," so "I set myself to learn about it." One of the panelists, Ann Craig, director of Religion, Faith & Values for the Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD), said, "We're not getting anyplace until we begin conquering the debate" in the religious community.

How to do it? Panelist Jimmy Creech, the former United Methodist pastor defrocked in 1999 for conducting same-sex "marriages," told the journalists to seek out "other voices" rather than quote the 700 Club's Pat Robertson and Focus on the Family founder Dr. James Dobson. According to Creech, conservative Christian leaders like Robertson and Dobson are "the most radical Christians in America today," and represent "a very minority point of view."

The sole journalist on the panel was David Waters, editor of the Washington Post/Newsweek "On Faith" blog. Waters urged reporters "not to go" to established leaders like Robertson and Dobson, contrasting them to "real people" in the pews.

Sponsorship. Who paid for this blend of journalism and activism? The NLGJA convention was underwritten by most of the biggest names in the news business. At the $25,000 level: the McClatchy Company. At the $15,000 level: CBS, CNN, Gannett Foundation, ESPN, and Hearst Newspapers. Kicking in $10,000 were NBC, Fox Business, Fox News, News Corporation, and The Washington Post. Good for $5,000 were ABC News and Bloomberg. Publisher and broadcaster Cox Enterprises bought the inside cover of the program, and CBS News "salutes NLGJA" on the back cover. Gannett (USA Today) "salutes" NLGJA in a full-page ad, as does The New York Times in a half-page ad. A.H. Belo Corporation (Dallas Morning News, Providence Journal) declares it is a "proud sponsor" in a full-page ad, while The Washington Post "congratulates" NLGJA in its full-page ad.

Recruiting. NLGJA members generally view themselves as members of an oppressed minority group, which suggests they're likely to bring a political agenda to their journalism. The NLGJA convention doesn't seem to be a likely place to find objective reporters. Nevertheless, most of the top organizations in journalism sent recruiters: The New York Times, The Washington Post, CNN, ABC, NBC, CBS, AP, NPR, Bloomberg, even conservative-leaning Fox. The poor Fox recruiter seemed lonely.

The political and ideological bias so readily apparent at the NLGJA convention reflects a glaring problem in the news industry as a whole. Reporting the news objectively is still a matter of professional pride to most journalists, but many also have bigger fish to fry.

29 agosto 2008

Philippines Court Rejects Claims of New York Based Pro-Abortion Group

Finally some good news...

By Samantha Singson

(NEW YORK – C-FAM) The Philippine Court of Appeals recently rejected claims made by a radical pro-abortion group based in New York. The court dismissed an effort seeking to overturn an executive order promoting natural family planning. The petition was filed earlier this year by a group of Manila residents who relied heavily on legal advice and material from the international pro-abortion litigation group, the Center for Reproductive Rights (CRR).

Executive Order No. 003 was instituted in February 2000 by then-mayor of Manila, Jose Atienza. The executive order “upholds natural family planning not just as a method but as a way of self-awareness in promoting the culture of life while discouraging the use of artificial methods of contraception.”

CRR admits that the executive order technically applies only to city health centers and hospitals and does not explicitly ban “artificial” contraception. But CRR and the petitioners alleged that the executive order created “serious and lingering damage to residents” and that the executive order has in practice resulted in a “sweep” of contraceptive supplies and services from city health centers and hospitals. Further, they claim that the executive order “deprive(s) many women of their main source of affordable family planning supplies.”

“Imposing Misery,” a CRR publication severely critical of the executive order, claims that the Philippines is in violation of international law and has a legal duty to “ensure right of citizens to a full range of family planning services and information.”

The document argues that the Philippine government is required to provide contraception under its international legal obligations. The document specifically mentions the CEDAW Convention, the Convention on the Rights of the Child, the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, as well as the non-binding Beijing Platform for Action. CRR’s international law argument relies almost exclusively on the non-binding interpretations of the treaty monitoring bodies, which have routinely overstepped their mandates by criticizing sovereign states on their abortion laws and reproductive health programs.

“Imposing Misery” outlines a litigation strategy to challenge the executive order. CRR recommends that “lawyers and advocates should explore different legal avenues to bring a court case challenging the executive order. "At the national level, an administrative complaint can be filed. Citizens who feel their rights have been violated by the policy can also file a petition in the courts, including the Supreme Court. If options at the national level prove ineffective, individual complaints can be taken to international bodies under the CEDAW Optional Protocol and the ICCPR.”

CRR regards the challenge to the Manila executive order as an important test case. According to CRR’s 2007 annual report, a positive decision to rescind the ban “would establish constitutional protections for reproductive rights throughout the country. It could also be used to defend similar rights in neighboring countries, as well as in Catholic countries throughout the world.”

Government officials have defended the focus on natural methods of family planning, as modern contraceptives have not been banned and are still available commercially throughout the country.

Though the Philippine Court of Appeals has dismissed the petition, the petitioners have vowed “to take their case to the international courts,” and other domestic avenues to challenge the order remain open.

21 agosto 2008

California: Gay rights trump religious freedom

August 21, 2008 - American Family Association

The California Supreme Court, which recently legalized same-sex marriage, has ruled by a 7-0 vote that homosexual rights trump religious freedom. The ruling barred doctors, because of their Christian beliefs, from withholding unnecessary medical care to gays and lesbians. The ruling says that under state law sexual orientation rights trump religious freedom.

Justice Joyce Kennard wrote in the ruling that two Christian fertility doctors who refused to artificially inseminate a lesbian have neither a free speech right nor a religious exemption from the state's law, which "imposes on business establishments certain antidiscrimination obligations."

Doctors at the Christian clinic referred the lesbian to another clinic, but the lesbian refused their referral - demanding that the Christian clinic perform the procedure. When the Christian doctors refused to violate their religious convictions, the lesbian sued and the Supreme Court gave her the victory.

This ruling will affect every business in California. If a similar victory in a federal court is won, every business in America will be affected.

For example
: Alabama Fertility Specialists (AFS) has begun a campaign to bring Honda of Alabama to its knees because Honda will not cover artificial insemination for a lesbian in it’s insurance.

Honda advised their insurance carrier to "exclude domestic partners (same-sex partners) from ART (Assisted Reproductive Technology) benefits including diagnostic services related to fertility/infertility..." If this doesn't work, then count on AFS to sue.

Alabama Fertility Specialists alerted the media, their supporters and gay groups about Honda’s actions and called on supporters and gays to bombard Honda with phone calls and letters.

World Health Organization Circumvents Abortion Laws in Bangladesh

By Samantha Singson

(NEW YORK— C-FAM) The World Health Organization (WHO) launched an initiative recently to boost a program for menstrual regulation in Bangladesh. WHO states that the objectives of this program are to “ensure the quality of [menstrual regulation] and to share the knowledge of safe motherhood.”

“Menstrual regulation,” also known as "menstrual extraction" (ME) is billed as a family planning method for women who missed their regular menstrual period and who strongly suspect that they are pregnant but cannot or do not want to wait for the results of a pregnancy test. Critics charge that menstrual regulation is a technique used to provide abortions in countries, like Bangladesh, where abortion is illegal.

A fund of $2.73 million, which was established with funding from the Netherlands Ministry of Development Cooperation and in partnership with the government of Bangladesh and non-governmental organizations working on menstrual regulation, will support projects over a four-year period starting this year.

Since there may not be an actual pregnancy to terminate, menstrual regulation is sometimes available in countries that prohibit abortion. If the woman was pregnant at the time the menstrual extraction is performed, the evidence of an abortion is either destroyed during the procedure or easily disposed of. Menstrual regulation is sometimes regarded as a cross between "foresight contraception" and "hindsight abortion."

Bangladesh has allowed menstrual regulation since the 1970s. A memo from 1979 established menstrual regulation as an "interim method of establishing non-pregnancy" for a woman at risk of being pregnant, whether or not she is actually pregnant.

Officials touted the menstrual regulation initiative as a positive step to help Bangladesh achieve Millennium Development Goal 5 to reduce maternal mortality by three-quarters. The maternal mortality rate in Bangladesh is decreasing, but is still one of the highest in the world. According to the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF), of the 2.5 million women who become pregnant each year, an estimated 370,000 develop fetal complications which the health facilities in the country are neither equipped nor able to handle.

Proponents of the WHO initiative assert that the decreasing maternal mortality rate can be primarily attributed to increased family planning services, including menstrual regulation. They argue that making menstrual regulation more widely available reduces the maternal deaths, decreasing the likelihood that a woman would recourse to an unsafe abortion.

UNICEF cites lack of access to emergency obstetric care, lack of skilled birth attendants, and maternal malnutrition as the primary causes of maternal death in Bangladesh, not unsafe abortion. According to UNICEF statistics, half of Bangladeshi women of reproductive age are underweight and in 2001, only 11.8 percent of deliveries were assisted by qualified medical personnel.

Critics of the WHO initiative charge that the menstrual regulation program may lead to fewer deliveries, and thus lower the maternal mortality rate, but it will not make women’s deliveries any safer.

The WHO is currently reviewing project proposals from interested organizations and research institutes working on menstrual regulation.

European Union Agency Calls for a Re-definition of Marriage, Criminalization of “Homophobia”

European Union Agency Calls for a Re-definition of Marriage, Criminalization of “Homophobia”

By Maciej Golubiewski

(WASHINGTON, DC — C-FAM) A recent report from the Fundamental Rights Agency (FRA) of the European Union (EU) has called for binding EU regulations that would equalize the legal status of married heterosexual couples with that of same-sex and opposite-sex couples across Europe. It also recommends policies aimed at “promoting visibility of homosexuality and other gender identities” and criminalizing homophobia through “hate crime” legislation.

FRA contracted writing of the report to a group called FRALEX. FRALEX is roughly the same group as the now defunct EU “network of independent fundamental rights experts,” a group that was widely criticized for trying to get the government of Slovakia to abrogate a treaty with the Vatican that provided conscience protection for doctors unwilling to carry out abortions.

The European Parliament requested FRA’s opinion in drafting a new EU law, called a directive that would prohibit discrimination based on “sexual orientation” in employment, education, social security, health care, and access to goods and services. Current EU laws extend that kind of protection only in the area of employment, leaving other areas to be treated in national legislation.

The 165-page report goes beyond examining the proposed directive and contains analysis of all possible aspects of EU and national laws that possibly discriminate against homosexuals. Areas include employment, freedom of movement, asylum, family reunification, freedom of assembly, and criminal law.

The report argues that EU law should force member states, in which there is no registered-partnership or “gay marriage” legislation, to treat poeple in these arrangements as married couples. Currently, the EU allows citizens of the EU and their family members to move and reside freely anywhere in the EU. The EU also allows third-country nationals who are spouses of EU citizens to reside legally in the EU. Both of these regulations refer to marriage in the traditional sense, although they allow exceptions when the move or reunification happens between countries that recognize other forms of relationships as equivalent to marriage.

The extension of marital privileges to same-sex and cohabiting opposite-sex couples is justified in the report by reference to the EU’s “fundamental principle” of “equal treatment.” Yet, the definition of same-sex and opposite-sex couples is not precisely defined in the text. The authors refer to “stable and permanent relationships” or “de facto durable relationships” or relationships with “a sufficient degree of permanency.” Arguably, only couples involved in a sexual relationship would benefit from the proposed extension of current EU regulations. The report does not contain any prescriptions of how governments might attest to and discern such relationships.

Other parts of the report call for mandatory national “equality bodies,” preferably with independent units dealing only with homosexual issues. It argues for endowing them with “quasi-adjudicatory functions” that would allow them to issue “binding sanctions or orders, subject to review by courts.” It also argues for a sweeping EU regulation that would make “homophobic hate speech a criminal offense.”

Maciej Brachowicz, a human rights expert from Poland-based Jegiellonian Club, told the Friday Fax that “if one were to agree with FRA’s opinion, there are barely any legal grounds left for claiming that any inequality in social life should not be treated as discriminatory.”

20 agosto 2008

Oregon citizens denied vote on marriage issue

Jeff Johnson - OneNewsNow - 8/20/2008

The Oregon Constitution says voters have the final say over any laws passed by the state legislature. The Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, however, says they don't.

After Oregon voters passed a marriage protection amendment declaring marriage to be only the union of one man and one woman, liberal lawmakers tried to sidestep the amendment by passing a "domestic partnership" law. As Austin R. Nimocks -- senior legal counsel for the Alliance Defense Fund -- explains, lawmakers are not supposed to have the final say in Oregon. "The citizens of Oregon reserve to themselves in their constitution the right to have the final say on any legislation...," notes Nimocks.

The attorney says when the Oregon legislature passed the domestic partnership law, citizens petitioned for a vote to determine whether the law would remain. But state officials refused to certify the referendum petitions -- a step Nimocks describes as "a dangerous precedent for the future of the democratic process in America."

"Right now, we're still considering our options on what to do," says Nimocks. "It's quite clear that the citizens of Oregon still want to have their say on this important law."

Both the U.S. District Court and the Ninth Circuit ruled that Oregon voters have no legal right to have their valid signatures counted in a referendum petition drive. Nimocks calls those court decisions a "tragedy for democracy."

"In America, every citizen's vote should count," the attorney says in a press release. "The court has tossed aside one of the most important rights we have as Americans. The people didn't thwart this effort; government bureaucracy did."

Media avert eyes as Obama caught in infanticide deception

by Brian Fitzpatrick - 8/20/2008
Presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Barack Obama's campaign has admitted that he has misled the public since 2004 on a hot-button social issue, but Big Media has virtually ignored the story.

The Illinois senator and a leading pro-life organization have accused each other of lying about his reasons for leading the fight against an anti-infanticide bill in the Illinois state senate between 2001 and 2003.

On Saturday, Obama accused the National Right to Life Committee (NRLC) with "lying" about his record. On Sunday, however, his campaign was forced to concede the NRLC's charge was accurate.

Obama's opposition to the Born Alive Infants Protection Act (BAIPA) has been a major problem for his political campaigns since 2004, when his opponent in the U.S. Senate race accused him of supporting infanticide. BAIPA would have required hospitals to provide care to infants that survived an abortion attempt, rather than withhold treatment and allow them to die.

Most such cases involve an abortion procedure in which labor is induced prematurely. The infants are expected to be killed by their own mothers' contractions, but a few survive the birthing process. The lungs of the survivors usually are not mature enough to sustain life, so the babies need immediate medical intervention. Many Illinois hospitals, however, decline to provide the lifesaving care.

Why would anybody oppose such a bill? According to CNSNews editor Terence Jeffrey, Obama opposed it because it would have defined a baby that survived an abortion procedure as a person: "Defining a 'pre-viable fetus' that survived an abortion as a 'person,' he argued, 'would essentially bar abortions....'"

In 2002 the U.S. Senate unanimously passed a federal version of BAIPA with a "neutrality clause" stating the bill did not affect the legal status of "the species homo sapiens prior to being 'born alive.'" Even the radically pro-abortion organization NARAL withdrew its opposition to the bill. Since 2004, Obama has said he would have supported the Illinois BAIPA if the state version of the bill had included "Roe-neutral" language found in the federal version. Has he been telling the truth?

Not according to NRLC. Last week, NRLC produced Illinois legislative records it said proved Obama had "blatantly misrepresented" his opposition to BAIPA. According to NRLC, Obama presided over a 2003 committee meeting that amended the Illinois bill to make it virtually identical to the federal bill – then voted against the amended bill anyway.

In an interview following Saturday's Saddleback Church presidential forum, CNN/CBN reporter David Brody asked Obama to comment on the NRLC allegations. Obama told Brody, "I hate to say that people are lying, but here's a situation where folks are lying." Obama continued, "I have said repeatedly that I would have been completely in, fully in support of the federal bill that everybody supported, which was to say that you should provide assistance to any infant that was born even if it was as a consequence of an induced abortion."

On Sunday, however, Obama's campaign staff conceded to The New York Sun that Obama "had voted against an identical bill in the state Senate." The staff tacitly admitted that Obama has been misleading the public since 2004.

Pro-life organizations immediately seized upon the controversy, but except for CNN, the liberal media have ignored it. NewsBusters reports that on Monday, CNN's Wolf Blitzer played a clip of Obama's accusation that NRLC was "lying." Blitzer said CNN is "checking the facts," but so far CNN has not reported NRLC's documentary evidence or the Obama camp's acknowledgement that NRLC has the facts straight.

Big Media has been ignoring the BAIPA story for months; the essential facts were reported by Jeffrey as early as January. This weekend, Obama put the story on the national radar screen by publicly accusing the NRLC of "lying." His campaign staff's subsequent admission that NRLC was correct – calling into question Obama's reasons for opposing a bill that would have prevented infanticide – has created a story screaming for attention.

How could a U.S. presidential candidate have opposed a bill that protected the lives of innocent, fully born babies, a bill so incontestably in the moral right that the most ardent pro-choicers in the U.S. Senate supported it unanimously? Is Barack Obama even more radically pro-choice than NARAL? Would Obama deny medical care to living, breathing infants just to reinforce the abstract right of mothers to decide whether their children are to live or to die? Big Media owes it to the public to tell the full story.

As of this writing, stony silence.

Source: http://www.onenewsnow.com/

14 agosto 2008

Obama pro-abortion all the way, says NRLC

Rusty Pugh - OneNewsNow - 8/13/2008 9:20:00 AM

A pro-life group says not only is Barack Obama 100-percent pro-abortion, it is now known that he even opposed a law designed to protect children who survived an abortion and were born alive.

New documents just obtained by the National Right To Life Committee (NRLC) prove that Senator Obama (D-Illinois) has, for the past four years, blatantly misrepresented his actions on the Illinois Born-Alive Infants Protection bill.

In 2000, the Born-Alive Infants Protection Act was first introduced in Congress. The bill was a two-paragraph bill intended to clarify that any baby who is entirely expelled from his or her mother, and who shows any signs of life, is to be regarded as a legal "person" for all federal law purposes, regardless if the baby was born during an attempted abortion.

Susan Muskett is legislative counsel for the NRLC. "Newly obtained documents prove that in 2003, Barack Obama, as chairman of an Illinois State Senate committee, voted down a bill to protect live-born survivors of abortion – even after the panel had amended the bill to contain verbatim language, copied from a federal bill passed by Congress without objection in 2002, explicitly foreclosing any impact on abortion," she explains.

"Obama's legislative actions in 2003 – denying effective protection even to babies born alive during abortions – were contrary to the position taken on the same language by even the most liberal members of Congress. The bill Obama killed was virtually identical to the federal bill that even NARAL ultimately did not oppose."

A group of evangelical and Catholic leaders claimed this week that pro-life voters should be willing to support Obama in his presidential bid because there has been a "positive shift" in language on the issue of abortion in the Democratic Party platform, which typically mirrors the principles and policies of its presidential nominee. But at least one pro-life activitst notes the proposed platform seeks the repeal of all state-level pro-life laws.

See this video. It is disgusting and disturbing, and I am nauseated. It is not graphic images but the content speaks of reprehensible acts defended by Barack Obama.

12 agosto 2008

Sister Teresa Benedicta of the Cross

From Ignatius Insight

August 9th is the Feast Day of St. Teresa Benedicta of the Cross, who was martyred on that day in 1942 in the Auschwitz concentration camp.

Fr. Charles P. Connor, in Classic Catholic Converts, writes:

The story of the Jewish Carmelite Sister Teresa Benedicta of the Cross, known in the world as Edith Stein, presents us with one of the more brilliant converts to come to the Faith in [the twentieth] century; it also places us in close contact with a horrendous tragedy of the modern world, the Holocaust.

Edith Stein was born in Breslau, Germany on October 12, 1891, the youngest of eleven children. In 1913 she began studies at the University of Göttingen in Germany. She soon became a student of the phenomenologist Edmund Husserl and was later attracted to the work of Max Scheler, a Jewish philosopher who converted to Catholicism in 1920. A chance reading of the autobiography of Saint Teresa of Avila revealed to her the God of love she had long denied. She entered the Church in 1922.

For eight years Edith lived with the Dominicans, teaching at Saint Magdelene's, which was a training institute for teachers. She wrote:

Initially, when I was baptized on New Year's Day, 1922, I thought of it as a preparation in the Order. But a few months later, when I saw my mother for the first time after the baptism, I realized that she couldn't handle another blow for the present. Not that it would have killed her—but I couldn't have held myself responsible for the embitterment it would have caused.

In fact, after her conversion Edith continued to attend synagogue with her mother. Meanwhile, she continued to grow and impress as a philospher. In 1925 she met the Jesuit Erich Pryzwara, a philosopher who would have a tremendous influence on Hans Urs von Balthasar. Pryzwara encouraged Edith to study and translate St. Thomas Aquinas; she eventually wrote a work comparing Usserl with Aquinas.

In 1933 Edith entered the religious life with the Carmel of Cologne, Germany. She fell in love with the person and writing of Saint Thérèse of Lisieux. She wrote:

My impression was, that this was a life which had been absolutely transformed by the love of God, down to the last detail. I simply can't imagine anything greater. I would like to see this attitude incorporated as much as possible into my own life and the lives of those who are dear to me.

After taking her first vows, Edith was known as Sister Teresa Benedicta of the Cross. She continued to write, Fr. Connor notes, "continually developing the theme that Christ's sacrifice on the Cross and the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass are in fact one and the same sacrifice. From her religious background, she knew the importance of sacrificial prayer for Old Testament prophets." She wrote of how Jesus' sacrifice as the Incarnate God-man was the final, perfect sacrifice that replaced all of the sacrifices of the Old Testament.

Because of the rise of Nazi power, Edith and her sister Rosa, who had also converted to Catholicism, moved to Holland in 1938. On August 2, 1942, Edith and her sister were taken from the convent by two S.S. officers. She was martyred seven days later. Fr. Connor writes: "On October 11, 1998, fifty-six years, two months, and two days after her death at Auschwitz, Edith Stein, Sister Teresa Benedicta of the Cross, was canonized a saint of the Roman Catholic Church by Pope John Paul II."

Ferdinand Holböck writes in New Saints and Blesseds of the Catholic Church : 1984-1987 (Volume 2):

The Church now presents Sister Teresa Benedicta a Croce to us as a blessed martyr, as an example of a heroic follower of Christ, for us to honour and to emulate. Let us open ourselves up for her message to us as a woman of the spirit and of the mind, who saw in the science of the cross the acme of all wisdom, as a great daughter of the Jewish people, and as a believing Christian in the midst of millions of innocent fellow men made martyrs. She saw the inexorable approach of the cross. She did not flee in fear. Instead, she embraced it in Christian hope with final love and sacrifice and in the mystery of Easter even welcomed it with the salutation,"ave crux spes unica". As Cardinal Höffner said in his recent pastoral letter, "Edith Stein is a gift, an invocation and a promise for our time. May she be an intercessor with God for us and for our people and for all people."

11 agosto 2008

Scientists closer to developing invisibility cloak

Mon Aug 11, 7:36 AM ET

WASHINGTON - Scientists say they are a step closer to developing materials that could render people and objects invisible.

Researchers have demonstrated for the first time they were able to cloak three-dimensional objects using artificially engineered materials that redirect light around the objects. Previously, they only have been able to cloak very thin two-dimensional objects.

The findings, by scientists at the University of California, Berkeley, led by Xiang Zhang, are to be released later this week in the journals Nature and Science.

The new work moves scientists a step closer to hiding people and objects from visible light, which could have broad applications, including military ones.

People can see objects because they scatter the light that strikes them, reflecting some of it back to the eye. Cloaking uses materials, known as metamaterials, to deflect radar, light or other waves around an object, like water flowing around a smooth rock in a stream.

Metamaterials are mixtures of metal and circuit board materials such as ceramic, Teflon or fiber composite. They are designed to bend visible light in a way that ordinary materials don't. Scientists are trying to use them to bend light around objects so they don't create reflections or shadows.

It differs from stealth technology, which does not make an aircraft invisible but reduces the cross-section available to radar, making it hard to track.

The research was funded in part by the U.S. Army Research Office and the National Science Foundation's Nano-Scale Science and Engineering Center.


Source: Yahoo News