Sunday 28 January 2018

Panic Over

Those with long memories and an interest in chant may remember that some time ago, I was ecstatic about an online chant tool (here for example).

Imagine my horror, then, when today I clicked on the link and got the message that 'The requested URL /propers.html was not found on this server.'  I searched around for some time, with no luck.

But with a little help from Google, I found where the wonderful tool is now hosted: it is here.

Panic over....

Saturday 13 January 2018

Fear and Abortion

The driver behind many abortions is fear.  Time and again, women speaking to counsellors say that they are afraid that they will not be able to cope, that their relationship will be put under too great a strain, that their parents will be unsupportive (or worse), that their education or career will suffer if they have a baby at this time, and so on.

All of these fears are about imagined futures.  But we do not know the future.  And further, if we choose one course of action (say, an abortion) we will never know what would have happened if we had not.  Moreover, we have a psychological investment in validating our decision, so we will tend to assume that all that we feared would indeed have come about, had we not had the abortion.

So we now have huge numbers of women in society who have a need to believe that their fears were well-founded, and that their abortion(s) saved them from some terrible fate.

But experience suggests that is not the case. Women who proceed with their pregnancies, even in very difficult circumstances, do tend to cope. Hardly any seem to regret their decision, and large numbers look back and say with hindsight that the (at the time unwanted) pregnancy was in fact a blessing in disguise.

This is an example of a larger phenomenon: very often we think in advance, that we won't be able to cope with some new change or challenge; yet more often than not, we do, when the occasion arises. As my mother used to say, we never get the grace until we actually need it...

But the abortion industry and its advocates thrive on fear.  Young women are taught to believe that an unintended pregnancy is the worst possible disaster; that a handicapped child would be impossible to cope with; that they will know when it is the right time to have a baby, and that any other time is the wrong time and will wreck their lives.

If we are to win the war against abortion, we need to discover how to combat these fears. In part, that means continuing to provide  (and better publicise) the support that so many women have already benefitted from. But we also need to challenge educational projects that inculcate these fears, and protect girls and young women from those aspects of popular culture that indoctrinate them. And, which will be even more difficult, we need to find ways to enable those who have had abortions to view them differently, and to be allowed to confront their loss and their grief.

For unless we convert hearts as well as the minds, we will never make real progress on this issue.

The urgent task, as I have blogged recently (here and here), is to resist the abortion lobby's push for Abortion on Demand; but we will also need to turn our minds to the truly important longer-term task of making abortion both (demonstrably) unnecessary and completely unthinkable, rather than the apparently easy option it appears to be today.

Tuesday 9 January 2018

What's the Agenda?

Further to my recent post about the concerted effort to 'De-Criminalise' abortion, I want to consider what the real agenda may be here.

Since I wrote that, we have witnessed the fury of BPAS and their allies at the appointment of Maria Caulfield as CCHQ Vice Chair for Women.  The ostensible reason for their fury is that she 'supports the criminalisation of women who end their own pregnancies.' The charge arises from her opposition to the bill to 'De-Criminalise' abortion.

In fact, the number of prosecutions of women for ending their own pregnancies is miniscule. The abortionist apologists' efforts are disproportionate: so what is their agenda?

I think there are a few things, some defensive and some aspirational (if one can use that word in this context).

On the defensive side of the ledger, I think there are (at least) three issues that worry them.

One is that very few doctors want to perform abortions. This is a problem they discussed at the meeting in the Royal College of Obstetrician and Gynaecologists last year. One doctor there, who performs abortions, said that no doctors want to do this; and his proposed solution was simply to pay them more.

But if they can get 'De-Criminalisation' through, they will be much better placed to enforce abortion practice on trainee doctors and young doctors - 'normalising' it for the next generation. They will also remove all conscience clauses (as these are part of the hated 'legislation') and thus be able to compel compliance by medical and nursing staff - and keep those horrid Catholics out of the professions.

A second is that, for all their noise, they are not winning the debate. ComRes polling last year suggests that most people, and women in particular, think that there should be more, not fewer, restrictions on the availability of abortion.  This Bill is quite out of step with public opinion.

So I think that they are trying to use legislation to change social attitudes (as happened with so-called Gay Marriage).

Their third worry is a sub-set of the second, but quite focused: the pro-life movement, and in particular the younger generation of the pro-life movement, is getting strong.

So they want both to curtail its activity, and impose an educational framework that indoctrinates children early about the 'good' of abortion: 'De-Criminalisation' is a step towards that goal.

On the aspirational side, of course, the abortion providers would love to be free of all constraints on their businesses.

And there are those, such as Ann Furedi, who seem genuinely to believe that it is an essential element of women's rights, and so want to ensure no legislative interference. It is worth engaging with Furedi's thinking, as she is coherent and consistent: she is quite clear, for example, that what she wants is the right to abortion up to birth, for any reason, with no restrictions whatsoever.  She is also clear that this involves killing living human beings, but believes that the self-determination of women is more important than the right to life of their unborn children.

And as I mentioned previously, there is a desire to use the UK as an exemplar to the rest of the world, and so export our murderous practices to all countries, with the weight of the UN and many wealthy countries behind this drive.

So for those who may be wondering why this is a big issue, given that we already have, in practice, abortion on demand in this country, those are some of the issues at stake.

Sunday 7 January 2018

A Momentous Year

2018 promises to be a momentous year in the UK, and one with global ramifications.

I am not thinking here of Brexit or other (relatively) trivial political issues. Rather, it is the year that the abortion industry has been planning for - the year in which they plan to push for Abortion on Demand.

As a clever piece of marketing, they are using the expression 'De-Criminalisation' to describe their aspirations. After all, who wants to 'criminalise' either women in desperate circumstances, or doctors?

They have also ensured that the various Colleges (of doctors, nurses, midwives etc) are all lined up - regardless of the wishes of their members.

There is a draft bill ready and waiting, and a huge campaign ready to be launched.

So we need to understand what 'De-Criminalisation' is likely to mean, and to consider what we can do to oppose it.

'De-Criminalisation' will mean that there is no legal framework surrounding the provision of abortion in this country.  It will be treated purely as a medical procedure, and any guidelines will be at the discretion of medics and in practice (judging by the way the Colleges have operated recently) based on the wishes of the abortion providers.

The probable consequences of this will be:

  • Abortion on demand, up to birth, for any reason.  That will include abortion for being the 'wrong sex' (typically female), as well as for any reasons of social convenience.  
  • The removal of any rights of conscience for medical or ancillary staff to refuse to participate in abortions.
  • The inclusion of abortion as a compulsory part of medical training for medics entering Obstetrics and Gynaecology.
  • The removal of safeguards for those taking abortifacient medicines: ie DIY abortions, at home.
  • The inclusion of aggressive pro-abortion 'education' in our schools

It is quite conceivable that the work of pro-life organisations will be dubbed 'hate crime' and made illegal. The current campaign for 'buffer zones' around abortion clinics, in the absence of any evidence of intimidation or harassment, shows the direction of travel here.

In a country where abortion has already been implicated in various Serious Case Reviews as facilitating the abuse of young girls in Rochdale etc, removing abortion from any kind of legal framework seems particularly perverse.

And the UK is being used as the pace-setter: the goal is to use the UK as an exemplar to all other countries in the world, and make abortion a universal right, the denial of which will lead to severe sanctions (again, we can see the ground work being laid for this already).

So it is imperative that all people of good will, who believe that human life is inviolable, should do whatever they can to oppose this evil movement this year.  I hope and expect that the various pro-life organisations in the UK will be mounting various educational and political campaigns; and they will need as much support as we can muster.  If we fight, it will be hard work, but we may conceivably stop the spread of this evil. If we do nothing, we are sacrificing future lives not only in this country, but globally.