Secular humanists like to sneer at religious folk for our stubborn insistence upon seeing God's hand at work in the world. We call "providence" what the materialist sees as a random unfolding of events. We see a blessing where the nonbeliever sees nothing more than the mundane workings of physics or biology. This mentality has insinuated itself into virtually every facet of contemporary culture, and its impact on bioethics has been particularly tragic. Human life is no longer considered to be sacred, and human dignity is no longer viewed as something inherent and inalienable. According to today's materialist values, human life is only worthwhile and dignified when it meets a certain standard of vigor and utility. If you don't measure up, then your life doesn't really matter.
Unborn children with chromosomal defects like Down's syndrome are one of the unfortunate groups adversely impacted by this new ethic. Because so many people now view children as a "choice" rather than a blessing, a disabled child is often viewed as an unwanted and – thanks to ever advancing medical technology – avoidable burden. National Public Radio recently ran a story celebrating the advance of precise prenatal testing for birth defects like Down's syndrome. As reported by First Things, the tone of NPR's coverage was unequivocally celebratory. "The story quoted physicians who lamented that inaccurate tests can mislead a woman into 'terminating what would actually have been a normal pregnancy.' With prenatal certainty about trisomy 21, the doctors said, women won't accidentally abort normal children."
Well praise the Lord and pass the forceps! Thanks to science for liberating would-be parents from the burden of raising a disabled child. Everyone knows that parenting a normal child is difficult enough. Why would anyone choose to have a child that will require so much extra time, effort, and attention for so much less return on investment? After all, there are no world famous neurosurgeons with Down's syndrome. No professional athletes or CEOs or movie stars. Just disabled people with limited capacities that often require a lifetime of hands-on support. Better to simply discard the "damaged goods" and try again for perfection. more >>
Alabama lawmakers on Tuesday passed a bill in the House banning abortions after a heartbeat has been detected. The bill, if it becomes law, would make it the strictest abortion law in the United States and critics are already decrying it.
The bill, HB 490, was passed in the House with a 73-29 vote. The measure severely punishes doctors who would go against the legislation by making it a class C felony for doctors who abort a baby with a heartbeat as defined by the bill and promises to revoke the licenses of doctors who go against it.
"This bill would make it unlawful for a physician to perform an abortion on a pregnant woman after a heartbeat has been detected from the unborn child in accordance with the applicable standards of medical care for determining heartbeats of unborn children," explains a synopsis of the bill HB 490. "This bill would further require a physician to check for a detectable heartbeat prior to performing an abortion." more >>
President Barack Obama continued to encourage volunteers of his political base to keep pushing Obamacare enrollment, telling the volunteers they are doing "God's work" through their efforts.
The president made his comments at a national Organizing for Action event in Washington, D.C., Tuesday night. Organizing for Action is a nonprofit organization of volunteers and officials who push the president's agenda. The organization originally helped with Obama's re-election in 2012, and now they have focused their efforts on enrolling as many Americans as possible with the Affordable Care Act before its March 31 deadline.
At Tuesday's event, Obama encouraged the OFA volunteers to keep pushing enrollment for the next month. "We're going to make a big push these last few weeks," the president said. "I can talk, my team can talk here in Washington, but it's not going to make as much of a difference as if you are out there making the case. The work you're doing is God's work. It is hard work." more >>
Perry Noble, senior and founding pastor of NewSpring Church in South Carolina, revealed Monday that he has been taking anti-depressants since 2012 after years of struggling with anxiety and suicidal thoughts.
Noble, who speaks to an average of 26,000 people at his multi-campus megachurch weekly, made the revelation in a post on his blog he titled, "Should Christians Take Medication for Mental Illness?"
He explained that his answer to that question used to be a very emphatic "NO!!!" and that he would advise Christian disciples under his care against medication. more >>
A Maryland-based order of nuns has sent a formal appeal before a federal court in order to be exempted from having to provide contraceptive services to its employees.
The Little Sisters of the Poor filed their appeal Monday before the Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals, requesting an exemption from the Department of Health and Human Services' "preventive services mandate."
The Little Sisters are being represented by the Becket Fund for Religious Liberty, which is handling several legal challenges nationwide to the HHS mandate. more >>
An Illinois-based appeals court has ruled that a Catholic academic institute must provide healthcare insurance for both students and employees that cover contraceptives.
A panel of the U.S. Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals in Chicago ruled Friday that the University of Notre Dame must provide contraceptives despite the Catholic school's objections to said products.
In a two-to-one decision, the judges upheld the ruling of a U.S. District Court judge against Notre Dame, arguing in the majority opinion that Notre Dame "has not yet shown that there is a substantial burden" in complying with the birth control mandate. more >>