Monday, 10 March 2014

Catching up - two connected issues ...

The former Episcopal  diocese of South Carolina - driven out, we should remember, by the - let's be direct - heretics (they certainly have a phobia for doctrinal orthodoxy and display a perverse delight in persecuting it wherever it may be found - what else can one call them?) who now control TEC - is looking to the Global South for Primatial Oversight. [here

Being an Anglican is looking ever more complicated and qualified; when the hierarchy here (in Wales) speaks of 'being one family' they forget that some members of the family have already been forced to sleep rough outside the garden gate and that unless their actions catch up with their (I'm sure, well-intentioned) rhetoric, others will be made to follow ...

And a strangely related issue - also connected with the removal and destruction of one of the foundation stones of Christian civilisation: 

A journey of discovery: Lord Tebbit says what no senior (elected) British politician would now dare to say - as the Catholic tradition upholds, there is a connection between holding human life sacred before birth and after it; in practice it seems that human life is either regarded as inherently valuable and therefore worthy of protection - despite 'hard cases' - or it is held to be disposably cheap. 
A good article [in full here] - although I would hesitate before using the phrase 'slippery slope', however true the metaphor may be - it's all too easily dismissed with contempt by those who themselves fight with an emotional arsenal of slogans and sound bites: 
"... Those warnings have proved prescient. Not only has the Steel legislation been greatly widened in scope, but in practice abortion is now available on demand, well past the time when the child would be capable of survival and in practice up to full term. Nor is there any need of evidence of any congenital defects or disorders. All that is necessary is that the mother so wants to be rid of her child that she can find two doctors (who it appears do not actually have to see her) to say that her health might be adversley affected if the child was born. Indeed some doctors regard the mother's reluctance to bear a female child for social reasons as sufficient evidence to allow an abortion.
Now the former Labour Lord Chancellor Lord Falconer plans to bring in his Assisted Suicide Bill to allow doctors to provide lethal medication and asstance if needs be to patients they believe to have less than six months to live. 
At present it is a criminal offence to asist in a suicide, but a prosecution requires the consent of the Attorney General and that is rarely forthcoming as he would have to believe that improper pressure had been put on a person to take their own life.
I am sure that it is not the intention of Lord Falconer to set us on that slippery slope to involuntary euthanasia or even to the full legalisation of [assisted] suicide, but I have no doubt that if passed the Falconer Bill would prove to be the stalking horse for those who do...."
And an important empirical contribution to the debate -  the other side of the emotional argument - from Baroness Campbell [a report also from The Telegraph: here
"Baroness Campbell, who suffers spinal muscular atrophy, argued strongly against any steps allowing doctors or nurses to help people take their own lives.
She said she and others had successfully resisted a proposal to make the fact that someone suffers a progressive condition or disability a factor weighing against prosecution for assisted suicide.
But she added: “Terminally ill and disabled people are in a worse position today than was the case five years ago.
“National economic instability means that public support services are under more pressure than ever.
“That has hardened public attitudes towards progressive illnesses, old age and disability.
"Words such as ‘burden’, ‘scrounger’ and ‘demographic time bomb’ come to mind, and hate crime figures in relation to vulnerable people have increased dramatically.
“This is a dangerous time to consider facilitating assistance with suicide for those who most need our help and support.
“It is not only dangerous for those who may see suicide as their only option, but can be tempting for those who would benefit from their absence.”
The British Social Attitudes Survey, the biggest barometer of public opinion in the UK, recently showed how, in marked contrast to previous recessions, attitudes towards welfare have hardened noticeably during the past few years.
The peer added: “Belgium has recently extended its law on euthanasia to include terminally ill and disabled children.
“That is not a future I want for our children or the most vulnerable"
However, 'liberal' (in this case 'pro-death') campaigners have a tried and trusted  technique when dealing with legislators (and Anglican Synods, for that matter) - the war of attrition - bring the issue back to decision-making assemblies again and again and again until those bodies come up with the 'right' answer. The price of liberty (and orthodoxy, too) is eternal vigilance; the Enemy of mankind never sleeps ....

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