ACL compiles a daily media monitoring service of stories of interest to the Christian constituency relating to children, family, drugs and alcohol, marriage, human rights, religious freedom etc. Visit the ACL’s website each day to see what’s of interest in the news. Please note that selection of the articles does not represent ACL endorsement of the content.



 



Abortion

Judge keeps Mississippi's Only abortion clinic open


Rob Quinn - Newser





A federal judge has extended an injunction that is keeping Mississippi's sole abortion clinic open. The judge continued to block a state law requiring anybody performing abortions to have privileges to admit patients to a local hospital, the AP reports. State officials say the law is about safety, but the Jackson clinic says it has been unable to obtain privileges for its employees because local hospitals have ignored their requests.


















Charities & NFP

Welfare scorn over Govt move to redefine 'charity'


Catholic Weekly





Proposed Commonwealth legislation to redefine ‘charity’ and simplify its regulatory framework, reduce red tape and increase public trust and confidence in the sector has run into heavy criticism from Catholic charities and welfare services such as Catholic Health Australia. Earlier this year the government established and staffed a new body, the Australian Charities and Not-For-Profit Commission and set out the legislation to empower it and its mandate.
















Environment

The small town and its big beef with gas protestors


Anthony Sharwood - The Punch





There’s a meaty little stink out of northern New South Wales this week which is dividing a community in two, and which could easily have, ahem, high steaks for the entire country. After this May’s annual Beef Week parade in the NSW town of Casino, the Beef Week committee voted unanimously to ban protestors from future parades. This, despite just three of the 60 floats being protest floats.
















Gambling

Mum facing jail over pokies-related fraud


Guy Stayner - ABC





An Adelaide mother who is facing jail for stealing more than $800,000 to feed her poker machine addiction has shared her story to highlight the impact of problem gambling. Poker machines have been prominent in politics recently, but away from the news, over the past decade there have been hundreds of cases of gambling-related fraud
















Indigenous

Tony Abbott backs Warren Mundine's call for bipartisan appraoch to indigenous development


Lanai Vasek - The Australian





Tony Abbott says he is willing to work with the government to develop reforms promoting indigenous employment, but does not expect Julia Gillard to pursue such a bipartisan approach. Responding to calls by former ALP president Warren Mundine in The Australian today for Labor to bypass the Greens and work with the Coalition on indigenous development, Mr Abbott said the issue had been “a real personal passion of mine for years now”.
















Marriage

Political parties stay wed to unpopular policies due to election pledges given to lobby groups perceived to be powerful at the time


John Warhurst - The Canberrra Times





Malcolm Turnbull has made a significant contribution to the same-sex marriage debate in his Michael Kirby lecture, which was reproduced in The Canberra Times (''Family first: gay or not'', Forum, July 7, p7). The lecture was not mainly about politics, but when he turns to the politics he commits himself to vote for same-sex marriage, subject to the wording of the bill, if the Liberal Party has a free vote. But he points out that his party has resolved not to have a conscience vote and that the its policy is to oppose gay marriage.














Politics

Greens use Labor attacks in appeal for byelection cash


Michelle Grattan - The Age





Greens leader Christine Milne is trying to turn Labor's attack on her party to advantage by using it to appeal for funds for the Melbourne byelection. In an email sent yesterday to 60,000 addresses on the Greens' supporters list, she said it was ''no coincidence that Labor's aggressive tactics have ramped up in the crucial last days of the byelection campaign''.












The Greens finding dirty deals don't come cheap

Simon Benson - The Daily Telegraph





Gillard's dilemma is to explain in the midst of this angst over the Greens from within her party, how she can continue to have a formal alliance with the Greens to govern.






Labor playing with fire in its rush to burn the Green witch

Michelle Grattan - SMH





By pouring vitriol on an ally, the government only fuels confusion and cynicism. Suddenly Labor, or at least many in it, have decided they must burn the Green witch. Prominent players have been stoking the fire all week, tossing the vitriol like kindling onto the pyre.


















Religious Freedom & Persecution

70 children rounded up, seven women teachers detained in Chinese Police raid on house church Sunday School in Xinjiang


Michael Ireland - ASSIST News Service





Police in China’s far western region of Xinjiang raided a house church Sunday school, rounded up 70 children and their teachers for questioning, and locked up seven women teachers in a local detention center. According to ChinaAid (www.ChinaAid.org) ,the children were attending special summer classes arranged by the house church in the regional capital city of Urumqi when the police action occurred on the morning of July 2.












Turkey: Oldest Christian monastery at risk

ANSAmed





The Mongolians failed to destroy it 700 years ago despite the massacre of 40 friars and 400 Christians. Yet the existence of the oldest functioning Christian monastery in the world, the fifth century Mor Gabriel Monastery in the Tur Abdin plane (the mountain of God's servants) near the Turkish-Syrian border, is at risk after a ruling by Turkey's highest appeals court in Ankara.














Refugees

Opposition seeks answer on Labor's boat action


Phillip Coorey - Sydney Morning Herald





The opposition is demanding to know why the recent spate of boats that sent distress calls when just off the Indonesian coast had not been returned to Indonesia. Under international law, if asylum seekers are picked up in Indonesia's search-and-rescue zone, they should be returned to that country.












Sexualisation of Society

50 Shades of Grey: sales heat up in Ballarat


Tom McIlroy - The Courier





It's the publishing sensation that has been called everything from “mummy porn” to a “bonkbuster” but Ballarat’s readers are embracing Fifty Shades of Grey. British author EL James’ breakthrough novel has already sold more than 50 million copies worldwide and with book stores around Ballarat struggling to keep up, that number is set to rise. Australian Christian Lobby chief of staff Lyle Shelton said while he had not read the book, it risked increasing sexualisation in contemporary society.












Other

Aussie schoolboys to get Gardasil


SkyNews





In a world first, Aussie schoolboys will be given the successful Gardasil vaccine to protect them against a range of cancers. The Gardasil vaccine protects against four types of the human papillomavirus (HPV) and is already being administered to Australian girls under a program introduced in 2007. HPV is associated with a range of cancers, including genital warts and cervical cancer.










Churches object to Nile's party name change

Barney Zwartz - SMH





Melbourne Anglican Archbishop Philip Freier asked the Victorian Electoral Commission not to let Fred Nile's Christian Democratic Party change its name to Australian Christians. Archbishop Freier and the Victorian Council of Churches complained that the new name suggested the party spoke for all Christians when its views were supported by probably only a minority. But the commission said it had no grounds to reject the name change.






Faith in contraception puts Gates on collision course with the Vatican

Joanna Moorhead - SMH





The billionaire Catholic Melinda Gates has thrown down the gauntlet to the Vatican with a vow to dedicate the remainder of her life to improving access to contraception across the globe. Mrs Gates, who with her husband, Microsoft founder Bill, is one of the world's leading philanthropic figures in development issues, predicted that women in Africa and Asia would soon be ''voting with their feet'', as women in the West had done, and would ignore the church ban on artificial birth control.