September 1, 2011

MaterCare Day 3 What We Are Facing

Greetings from Rome!  Another beautiful day in Rome has passed, filled with many excellent talks.  Whereas yesterday we focused much on the call that we have received and how we are to take steps to answer, today’s sessions elaborated on what some of the problems are.  The morning session began with Representative Christ Smith discussing the current political climate surrounding abortion policies and motherhood.  He re-emphasized how the Obama administration has taken many steps in these few short years to spread abortion both in the United States and abroad.  He cited the way that the United States has misrepresented many of the United Nation’s Millenium Development Goals in order to promote abortion in developing countries.  (This will be touched upon again in a short while).  He also discussed how the Obama administration has continued to spread abortion through Obamacare, the repeal of conscience protections, the contraception mandate (which includes the morning after pill/plan B), the repeal of the Mexico City Policy, and most recently, the apparent support of China’s one-child/forced abortion policy.  Representative Smith raised these issues to emphasize that there is much work to be done in the United States, and much of what is happening in the U.S. is affecting other countries and groups, because the United States supplies so much foreign aid, and consequently also exports many of these ideas with that aid.
Later in the day, Dr. Donna Harrison, the current director of research for the American Academy of Prolife OB/GYNs gave an excellent talk on maternal mortality.  She began the talk by discussing how maternal mortality is disproportionately high in Africa.  She made the claim that this is due to the policies of the United Nations and World Health Organization because these organizations have focused on access to contraception and abortion on demand, rather than the prevention of hemorrhage, infection, and the supplying of access to care and trained birth attendants.   At the heart of her talk was the fact that the Millenium Development Goal 5 had been changed in order to promote the abortion ideology.  She made the point that the original language of MDG 5 was concerned with safe motherhood, but was changed by the Women Deliver Conference to focus on the spreading of ‘comprehensive’ reproductive health coverage, which in reality is primarily about providing abortion on demand.  This same conference also identified four major obstacles to the spreading of abortion.  These were 1) The Catholic and Protestant Churches, 2) the ability of providers to opt out of providing services due to conscientious objections 3) pregnant women seeing ultrasound images of the unborn child, and 4) the fact that many of these cultures do not want abortion to be available.  It is important that we understand that in fact, we are the obstacles, and we will continue to be attacked because we are in the way of the spread of abortion on demand.  So if you feel attacked, then perhaps you may have a better understanding of why.  And it is not just various pro-abortion groups who are trying to overcome these obstacles, but it is the World Health Organization itself that has adopted an abortion first policy.
The abortion first policy has now become not only a part of the World Health Organization, but of the United Nation outreaches in general.  In an excellent talk given by the President of the International Youth Coalition, Terrence McKeegan, the history of the abortion first policy at the United Nations and the WHO was succinctly laid out.  This policy has been developed over the past 50 years, first beginning with the United States government and funding of individual groups, and eventually spreading to the UN and its subsequent committees.   The WHO adopted the view that the best way to reduce maternal mortality would be to prevent pregnancy in the first place by increasing access to contraception and abortion.  However, the evidence that this policy actually works is simply not there.  Mr. McKeegan demonstrated that the maternal mortality numbers used are inaccurate and that no real data truly exists, but rather there are nebulous numbers used as justification for these policies.  The United Nations is working closely with the pro-abortion groups, promoting and legitimizing their viewpoints around the world, and also funding the work of these same groups.  Thus, there is much work to be done to change the abortion first policy of the United Nations.  Mr. McKeegan emphasized that there are both short term goals and long term goals.  In the short term we must hold our representatives responsible for the policies they promote at the United Nations and we must work to change the views of those around us.  He also suggested that we take up the fight in the countries themselves, working as missionaries to provide true healthcare and knowledge.  Over the long term, he re-emphasized what was said earlier in the conference that the current leaders must mentor and help guide the next generation of pro-life workers, namely you and I. 
Today’s talks covered much ground, including issues impact of demographic changes as well the problems of induced abortion, IVF, and contraception, along with what has already been described.  Throughout these talks, there was an emphasis that we must know what we are facing and where the challenges have come from.  There is much work to be done, and we will not be solving these issues rapidly.  As such, it is important that we all consider what we can do to help spread the truth about the sancity and dignity of life, and what we can do to offer true health care to women.

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