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.



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Abortion

ACLU tackles US Catholic bishops over abortion


James S. Cole - Mercator Net

The American Civil Liberties Union has filed a lawsuit on behalf of a young Michigan woman against the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops and certain individuals associated with a Catholic hospital in Muskegon, Michigan. The lawsuit seeks damages and a declaration that the USCCB's Ethical and Religious Directives for Catholic Health Care Services violate the duties that doctors and hospitals owe to patients.


Charities & NFP

Pressure on charities at Christmas


Georgie Burgess - The Examiner

Tasmanian charities are crying out for assistance this Christmas after being inundated with requests for emergency relief. Tasmanian Council of Social Services executive officer Tony Reidy said maximum support was needed for Tasmanian suppliers of emergency relief.


Classification

Driven to distraction


Jackie Quist - Today Tonight

Clever or crass; creepy or creative? – they are the top 10 most complained about TV ads for 2013. Advertising Standards Bureau CEO Fiona Jolly says the board received around 4000 complaints, with 455 advertisements under fire. “Generally sex and the depiction of women in advertising is the most complained about issue. But this year we've had a real range of issues such as violence,” she said.


Drugs & Alcohol

Brothers 4 Life gang members arrested


AAP

Police say they've made a dent in the Sydney drug trade with the arrest of nine associates of the notoriously violent Brothers 4 Life gang. Drugs, weapons and cash were seized in co-ordinated early morning raids in southwest Sydney on Tuesday, police say.


Education

Why good teachers leave teaching


Misty Adoniou- The Conversation

As another school year comes to a close, there are some early career teachers quietly packing up their desks and walking out the school doors with no plan to return next year. Some estimate the attrition rates in teaching to be as high as 30% in the first three years. The truth is, we don’t know the exact numbers. With so many teachers employed casually upon graduation, there is no data on how many of them just give up on the profession. They simply disappear - and there is no exit interview to find out what has prompted them to leave.


Environment

There's no business case for gutting our national environment laws


Lindsay Hesketh - On Line Opinion

Over the past few years, the Australian business lobby has launched a fierce campaign against the national process in place to protect Australia's unique and precious natural environment. Australia's overarching national environmental legislation, the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation (EPBC) Act is a national watchdog, placing conditions on or, if necessary, vetoing developments that threaten matters of national environmental significance.


Euthanasia

Ex-judge warns against legalising assisted suicide


The Christian Institute

The law against assisted suicide protects us all and should not be tinkered with, a former senior family judge has warned. Elizabeth Butler-Sloss, a Peer in the House of Lords, made the comments ahead of a Supreme Court appeal this week from people who want to weaken the law.


My husband begged me to help him die. Thank God I didn't

Kathy Gyngell - Daily Mail

On a bright summer’s day a few years ago, I picked up the phone to call the doctor out again. My husband Bruce was bedridden and immobile. He had been battling brain cancer for more than a year. Though he was unable to move, let alone lift himself or manage his day-to-day needs by himself, I was still caring for him at home, in our bedroom.


Gambling

Bill Vlahos claims The Edge owes him $32m


Ben Butler and Patrick Bartley - The Age

The operator of failed punting club The Edge, Bill Vlahos, claims it owes him $32 million. Paper losses in the betting club are estimated to hit $500 million, but the actual amount of money invested by punters is as yet unknown.


Homelessness & Poverty

Pope has birthday breakfast with homeless


News Ltd

Three homeless men, one of them carrying his dog, have helped Pope Francis celebrate his 77th birthday, joining him for Mass and breakfast and presenting him with a bouquet of sunflowers. The men live on the street in the Rome neighbourhood just outside the Vatican's walls and were invited by the Holy See official in charge of alms-giving to attend Tuesday's Mass, which Francis celebrates daily at the hotel where he lives on Vatican City grounds.


Human Rights

Tim Wilson appointed Human Rights Commissioner


Serkan Ozturk - Sydney Star Observer

Classical libertarian advocate and openly-gay man Tim Wilson has been appointed as Australia’s Human Rights Commissioner by Attorney-General George Brandis. Wilson has for the past seven years been the policy director at the Institute of Public Affairs. He takes on the position that was previously held by Catherine Branson QC until mid last year. The Human Rights Commission’s president, Gillian Triggs, had been acting Human Rights Commissioner until this week.


Marriage

It's time to reconsider polygamy


Mark Goldfeder - CNN

Polygamy is back in the headlines. Last week, a federal judge in Utah struck down part of the state's anti-polygamy law as unconstitutional, although he kept the ban on possessing more than one marriage license at a time. Fans of the "Sister Wives" reality TV stars, who filed the suit, are rejoicing in the news.


Gay marriage celebrant is not a Uniting Church Minister despite media reports

John Sandeman - Eternity Newspaper

The headlines read “Uniting Church Minister will marry gay couple” (Canberra Times) and “Uniting Church minister Roger Munson only religious celebrant able to perform same-sex marriages in ACT” (ABC). But Munson is not a UCA minister, according to the church.


UK: High Court judge disciplined over marriage comments

BBC

A High Court judge has been disciplined for voicing his views on marriage through national newspapers. Sir Paul Coleridge received a formal warning from the Judicial Conduct and Investigations Office over articles in the Times and Telegraph. In the newspapers he said marriage brought "stability", and called gay marriage a "minority issue" which had taken up too much government time.


Overseas Aid

Why I'm buying Joe Hockey a goat for Christmas


John Beckett - Micah Challenge

For the last 3 years my wife and I have received goats for Christmas. The practise of buying a gift on behalf of a friend for someone in need elsewhere has become a common part of Christmas for many of us. And it’s a great idea. It makes a difference in the lives of poor people and communities while at the same time keeping some of the potential excess of Christmas in check.


Prostitution & Sex Trafficking

Why she sold her daughter's virginity


CNN

A mother in Cambodia details why she sold her 12-year-old daughter's virginity to sex traffickers.


Religious Freedom & Persecution

At least 205 Christians killed by Fulani herdsmen in Benue State, Nigeria


Morning Star News

Reports of Christians attacked in central and northern Nigeria draw more attention, but in more southerly Benue state Islamic extremists killed at least 205 Christians in the last six months alone, sources said.


Sexualisation of Society

I'm a man and I don't like lingerie football

Michael Jarosky - Brisbane Times

I don't like the Lingerie (aka "Legends") Football League. Let's take a group of fit, strong women that are damn good athletes and create a women's gridiron league. Sure, why not? But before they take the field, they have to get semi-naked before the cameras roll for one of the big three networks. What a shame.