This is good advice for all of us, no matter what the doc said at our last checkup.
I’ve found this to be true in my own life. The one person I can always count on is my husband. Marriage provides stability and security that people cannot find in any other human relationship.
Rumors aside, it appears that Pope Francis is not going to overturn the 2,000-year-old Church teaching on the sanctity of Holy Matrimony.
The Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, Archbishop Gerhard Ludwig Muller published an article in the Vatican newspaper, putting that story to rest.
Archbishop Muller writes that marriage is indissoluble as is testified in both Scripture and Tradition.
As an American, I find British law confusing, which, I expect is equally true of the British when they try to consider American law.
My understanding of the current legal situation concerning sex selected abortion in Britain is, to put it in American terms, that the agency charged with enforcing the statute has determined that it is, if a single loophole is followed, unenforceable.
The decision was based on a request for prosecution of two doctors who agreed to perform a sex selected abortion that was part of an undercover operation by a British newspaper. The exception on which the decision not to prosecute these two doctors was based is a provision in British law that allows abortions for reason of the baby’s gender whenever two physicians certify that “continuance of the pregnancy would involve risk, greater than if the pregnancy were terminated, of injury to the physical or mental health of the woman or any existing children of her family.”
That sounds very much like the health of the mother exceptions that have allowed terminations of pregnancies right up until the baby is born here in the US. In fact, it sounds as if sex-selected abortion was already legal in Britain, even before the Crown Prosecution Service decision not to prosecute under this law. If that is true, and the law I’ve seen reads like it is, then the CPS decision was a formality.
The report from the CPS talks about the difficulty the prosecution would face proving that the doctors in question were acting in bad faith. It describes this situation as “a narrow basis for any prosecution.”
Because of these things, the CPS declined to prosecute the two doctors in question. It also, so far as I understand these things, gave an explanation as to why any prosecutions for sex-selected abortion would be extremely unlikely.
In America, we would say that the CPS had made a de facto decision legalizing same-sex abortion in Britain. I’ve read comments, including a circular and mush-mouthed statement from the Prime Minster, saying that there is no such thing as a de facto decision in British law. That leaves me wondering what they call it.
If the agency charged with enforcing a law says that they won’t enforce it because it is unenforceable, then it sounds to me like this agency has, de facto, repealed the law. In addition, if the quotations supplied by the CPS in their discussions of this decision are both accurate and inclusive of the British law on sex selected abortion, I think they are probably right. This law is unenforceable except in the rare case where a doctor is stupid enough to do a sex-selected abortion without getting another doctor to sign off on it for him or her.
So far as I know, there has not been any legislation passed in Britain formally legalizing sex-selected abortion. However, when the agency charged with enforcing a law says that they will not enforce it because the law is unenforceable, then it sounds like it’s been repealed to me.
Britian’s Prime Minister, David Cameron, affirmed this even as he denied it when he answered a question that included the statement “a female fetus in the womb today is more vulnerable than she was last week” by saying
… But in our country we do have independent prosecuting authorities. It’s very importance that they look at the evidence and they make a decision on the basis of likelihood of getting a conviction and the public interest in making a case and taking it to court. That’s how things have to work in our country, but I share her concern about what we’ve read and what has happened and it’s absolutely right that professional action should be considered as well.
For those who aren’t fluent in the language, that’s political-speak for “Yes.”
The facts as I know them — and I will be happy to write about any difference in facts as they pop up — is that sex selected abortion is now free of the threat of prosecution in Britain so long as two doctors sign off on the sex selected abortion in accordance with the parameters established under the law.
I would guess that it is possible that this law will be re-written to make it enforceable in the future. However, that may not happen. I can not predict.
Quotes from CPS communications about the decision, as well as links to the original documents, are below:
According to a letter from Keir Starmer, who is the Director of Public prosecutions to Dominic Grieve, MP, the loophole in the law is that:
The law does not, in terms, expressly prohibit gender-specific abortions; rather it prohibits any abortion carried out without two medical practitioners having formed a view, in good faith, that the health risks of continuing with a pregnancy outweigh those of termination.
… the discretion afforded to doctors under the current law in assessing the risk to the mental or physical health of a patient is wide and, having consulted an experienced consultant in Obstetrics and Gynaecology, it appears that there is no generally accepted approach among the medical profession.
There is also the difficulty that, on its face, the HSA/1 form which doctors are required to use to certify their assessment of a patient, does not require them to see or examine the patient before forming a view. Against that background, it would be very difficult for a jury to assess what may or may not be an “adequate” assessment by the doctor and there is a real risk that different juries would reach different decisions on essentially the same facts.
Abortion on the grounds of fetal sex
Deacon Greg has the story.
Mikey Weinstein, former legal counsel to the administration of President Reagan, has scored what I would imagine is to him another big victory. Thanks to a phone call from Mr Weinstein, the Air Force Academy has made the phrase in its oath “so help me God” optional.
Just in case someone might be tempted to mistake Mr Weinstein for a civil libertarian, let’s consider an article I discussed earlier that he wrote for the Huffington Post:
That, my friends, is hate speech directed at Christians. It is the same kind of hate speech that has preceded overt discrimination and violent persecution of groups of people all over the world. It says all anyone needs to know about Mr Weinstein, his organization and their goals.
Predictably, Mr Weinstein is not satisfied with making “so help me God” optional. He wants the phrase removed from the oath altogether. Also predictably, he claims that his motivations are based on his desire for “freedom.”
From the Associated Press:
DENVER (AP) — Air Force Academy cadets are no longer required to say “so help me God” at the end of the Honor Oath, school officials said Friday.
The words were made optional after a complaint from the Military Religious Freedom Foundation, an advocacy group, that they violated the constitutional concept of religious freedom.
Academy Superintendent Lt. Gen. Michelle Johnson said the change was made to respect cadets’ freedom of religion.
The oath states, “We will not lie, steal or cheat, nor tolerate among us anyone who does. Furthermore, I resolve to do my duty and to live honorably, so help me God.”
Cadets are required to take the oath once a year, academy spokesman Maj. Brus Vidal said.
Mikey Weinstein, founder and president of the Military Religious Freedom Foundation, welcomed the change but questioned how it will be applied.
If the person leading the oath includes the words, cadets who choose not to say them might feel vulnerable to criticism, he said.
“What does it mean, `optional’?” Weinstein said. “The best thing is to eliminate it.”
Vidal said the oath is led by the Cadet Wing honor chair, a student, and that person will also have the option to use or not use the words.
Academy officials did not immediately return a follow-up call seeking comment on Weinstein’s question.
It began — at least for me — when Public Catholic reader Manny shared this link.
That led me to a google search where I found links from
all of which say that Manny’s link is correct. The UK has done one of those this-is-how-we-interpret-the-law laws that now allows doctors to perform sex-selected abortions.
I’m not going to comment about this right now. I feel like somebody hit me and I need to get my breath back.
However, just for your reading pleasure, I’ll include one last link. It’s from a “feminist” group explaining how killing baby girls is … well … too “complex” to be illegal. They think that it’s basically ok so long as it’s the woman’s choice to kill her baby because the baby is a little girl.
To paraphrase Lily Tomlin, I try to be cynical folks. But I just can’t keep up.
Brazil and Mexico have joined Germany and France in protesting American spying on their leaders and citizens.
When on when will someone in Congress take a brief timeout from attacking members of the other political party and speak up for the American people?
Why are we the only ones our government can violate without anybody speaking up for us? Why is the government listening in on our phone calls and reading our emails without any resistance from the people we’ve elected to speak for us in government?
That is their job, you know. They are supposed to speak for us – not their political parties and not special interests, but for us – in government. That’s why it’s called a representative democracy. The men and women we send to the United States Senate and the United States House of Representatives are supposed to be our representatives in government. They are our voice at the table.
So why aren’t they doing their job?
Why are they so dead, flat silent about this?
Here’s a suggestion for these folks: Try representing the people who elected you, Mr or Ms Congressperson.
You’ll get roughed up by your colleagues and the lobbyists who buy your lunch and laugh at your tasteless jokes. You may even find out that your jokes weren’t ever all that funny. But you’ll never have to be afraid to go home and face your district again.