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

When murder looks like abortion


Andrew Bolt - Herald Sun





Whatever we think of abortion, surely no one can seriously support the killing of healthy late-term babies, which we do in Australia. Once we accept the killing of healthy babies eight or nine months in the womb, what is to stop us from killing babies outside the womb? Indeed, pro-abortion ”ethicists” here have argued there is no difference (which is true) and we should be allowed to kill babies after birth.
















Bioethics

Let human bodies stay priceless


Margaret Somerville - Mercator Net





It's been reported that two Canadian companies are willing to pay blood donors to get their plasma. Plasma is used to produce immunoglobulin, a high-cost treatment for diseases that include cancer. Is there something inherently wrong in commodifying and commercializing the human body, selling our organs or tissues? Some people believe it offends human dignity to treat the body as an object and just another item for sale. Others see respect for individual autonomy and choice as required to respect human dignity and allowing sale as necessary to honour these values. These two positions focus at different levels and embrace different concepts of human dignity.


















Children & Family

We apologise, PM tells victims of forced adoptions


AAP





Prime Minister Julia Gillard has told victims of forced adoption practices: "We apologise". Ms Gillard made the long awaited national apology at a special ceremony in Canberra attended by hundreds of people, including mothers betrayed by a system that decided their children were better off elsewhere. "We acknowledge your loss and grief," the prime minister said.














Classification

Conroy's bill hits the highway as independents ay 'no way Jose'


Gemma Jones - The Daily Telegraph





It was a disaster of Stephen Conroy's making which almost brought the government to its knees and forced the Labor leadership back before caucus yesterday. The Communications Minister's draconian media laws, which would have seen a government-appointed regulator of the press and sanctions that could shut down newspaper reporting, had to be dumped by the government yesterday.










Government withdraws media reform bills

Mark Kenny, Dan Harrison - SMH





The federal government has withdrawn the remaining four media reform bills from Parliament after failing to secure sufficient support from the crossbench to get them over the line.
















Drugs & Alcohol

Melbourne and Geelong are worst places for drunks, national study finds


Peter Mickelburough - Herald Sun





Melbourne and Geelong revellers are the most drunk in the country, and punters in the regional Victorian city are most likely to become involved in an aggressive confrontation, a study has found. The report, Patron Offending and Intoxication in Night-Time Entertainment Districts, found that across Australia after 1am, almost a third of patrons had a blood alcohol reading of above 0.10, with the highest averages in Geelong and Perth.










NSW surgeon appeals drugs session sentence

AAP





A Sydney neurosurgeon who was jailed after two escorts died following cocaine-fuelled sex sessions in his home is appealing his sentence. Suresh Surendranath Nair was sentenced to a minimum of five years and three months in the NSW District Court in August 2011, after pleading guilty to a number of charges, including supplying cocaine to Victoria McIntyre, 23, who died in hospital after a sex session at his Elizabeth Bay flat in February 2009. He also pleaded guilty to manslaughter, by gross negligence, in failing to call an ambulance for another girl - Suellen Domingues-Zaupa, 22, who died in his flat in November 2009.
















Environment

Coal seam mining loopholes


Alicia Wood - The Daily Telegraph





Councils can opt-out of new coal seam gas laws - a move the Greens have said was ripe for corruption. The draft NSW Environmental Planning Policy, released yesterday, contains a loophole that would allow rural councils to approve CSG exploration and over-ride the policy. In the draft plan councils could apply to Planning Minister Brad Hazzard to sign off on exploration - if it was something they wanted.
















Politics

Julia Gillard wins battle, Tony Abbott leads war


Sid Maher - The Australian





Julia Gillard's supporters have called for the heads of the party plotters who attempted to overthrow the Prime Minister and install Kevin Rudd as leader in yesterday's failed coup. As the recriminations began within a deeply divided Labor party, Tony Abbott used the chaos to demand an election and declare minority government a failure.












Body count: Rudd supporters quit their posts

James Robertson - SMH





Kevin Rudd supporters have begun quitting government leadership posts in the wake of today's aborted leadership spill. Four MPs, including chief whip Joel Fitzgibbon, have followed the departure of cabinet Minister Simon Crean, who was sacked for his role in bringing on today's leadership spill, which was ultimately not contested. Key Rudd supporter Joel Fitzgibbon, has said he will step down as the government's chief whip at the next Labor caucus meeting. Two other government whips, Ed Husic and Janelle Saffin, resigned this evening.














Religious Freedom & Persecution

Indonesian Christians protest church demolition


Globalpost





Around 100 Indonesian Christians begged the government Thursday to halt the demolition of their church, as hundreds of Muslim protesters branded them "infidels" and demanded the building be torn down. While dispirited church members dressed in black gathered outside the building and sang hymns, police held back hundreds of Muslims who chanted "knock the church down now" -- in a sign of increasing intolerance in the country.












Christian minority working in Libya now faces imprisonment, death

Catholic Online





In a troubling development, Egyptian Copts in Libya say one of their number has been killed by a militia while detained along with dozens of other Copts. Copts accuse Libyan militias, with the tacit approval of the government, of harassing, arresting, torturing, and now killing Christians. Egyptian Copts are angry over the suspicious death of one of their own at the hands of his Libyan captors. A shopkeeper, who was also a Copt, was arrested by a Benghazi militia and accused of "proselytizing." That individual was later allegedly tortured and killed while in detention.












Sexualisation of Society

Driving childhood out of children


Melinda Tankard Reist blog





There’s been a ton of media coverage on the adultification and sexualisation of children lately.
















Other

Abattoirs need strict regulation: activist


AAP





Distressing footage of poultry workers mistreating turkeys at a plant in Sydney's southwest has prompted calls for an independent body to regulate abattoirs. The secretly filmed footage showed workers at the Inghams Enterprises plant kicking birds, stomping on their heads and slamming them against production line machinery. Animal rights group Animal Liberation captured the vision on a camera hidden in the plant over a two-week period in February.










Social Media, Family Guy Contributed to Steubenville

Evann Gastaldo - Newser





The Steubenville rape case is shocking, but should we really be surprised that none of the teens who witnessed the crime helped the victim? Two columnists today argue that modern culture, from social media to shows like Family Guy, contributed to just such a situation: This is basically a modern-day example of the "bystander effect," writes Kathleen Parker in the Washington Post. Pictures of and tweets about the crime flew through social media, and indeed, social media itself is to blame for the "dispassionate" response of the kids who saw the posts and didn't do anything about them. "With a cellphone in every pocket, it has become second nature for most people to snap a picture or tap the video button at the slightest provocation," while remaining essentially removed from the circumstances.