Abortion

Anti-abortion supporter Dr Roland von Marburg sues Facebook for cocaine allegations


Mark Russell - The Age



A doctor and father-of-eight who supports an anti-abortion group called 'Abortion Hurts Albury' has sued Facebook Australia for defamation in the Victorian Supreme Court over claims he was an incompetent surgeon and cocaine user.




Children & Family

The baby bin: Delivering unwanted newborns from death


Deirdre Tynan - Marie Claire



Every year, up to 40 babies are left to die in the streets of Germany. More than a decade ago a controversial scheme was set up to save them.





Drugs & Alcohol

The West in drug’s icy grip as East is in ecstasy agony


Daily Telegraph



Ecstasy use is surging in Sydney’s wealthiest suburbs and the amount of ingredients for producing ice — the dangerous party drug of choice in less affluent areas — hitting our shores has risen by more than a tonne.




Drug trade gets serious: drugs worth $1.5 billion seized

Charles Pauka - Trade and Logistics News



Six men have been charged by the Joint Organised Crime Group (JOCG) for their involvement in the attempted importation of almost three tonnes of MDMA and crystal methamphetamine (ice) into Sydney. This seizure is estimated to be worth up to $1.5 billion on the street. The illicit drugs were intercepted by the Australian Customs and Border Protection Service officers at the NSW Container Examination Facility and were hidden in a mixed container load of furniture and unmarked boxes.




Education

University deregulation: Education Minister Christopher Pyne says round two on higher education reform has already started


Louise Yaxley - ABC



Education Minister Christopher Pyne says round two of his fight to deregulate universities has already started. He lost round one yesterday when the Senate voted down his bill 33 to 31.




Non-religious chaplains may not be funded under new chaplaincy program in 2015

John Stewart - ABC



More than 500 of Australia's 2,300 school chaplains may not be funded under the Federal Government's new chaplaincy program that begins next year, because they are not religious. Under the Abbott Government's new policy guidelines a chaplain must be recognised by "religious qualifications or endorsements by a recognised or accepted religious institution".




Euthanasia

Dutch doctors to approve organ donation euthanasia


Michael Cook - Mercator Net



Doctors in the Netherlands are working on a scheme to increase the number of life-saving organs available for transplant – by harvesting them from people who want to be euthanased.




Gambling

Sydney’s biggest licensed clubs spending more than $200m to move away from pokie revenue


Daily Telegraph



Four of the biggest licensed clubs in Sydney are spending $226 million on redevelopments as they look to bring in more non-poker machine revenue.




Health

Record numbers seek help from group set up to prevent youth suicide


Pamela Medlen - ABC



Every week in Western Australia, a young person takes their life in a suicide. Anne Richards knows all too well the struggle a young adult can go through before it all becomes too much. Her son Mark took his life five years ago at the age of 27. "Looking back, things were so much tougher for Mark than any of us realised," Ms Richards said. Mark was a bright, well-liked kid and a talented sportsman.




Indigenous

Indigenous leaders form new national body to reclaim rights and voice


The Guardian



A two-day summit of first nation leaders and elders from across Australia has formed a new body to represent Indigenous people and reclaim Indigenous rights and representation, organisers have said.




Politics

Anti-abortion crossbencher likely to be elected to upper house


Tom Cowie - The Age



A likely crossbencher in the new Victorian upper house wants to wind back abortion laws and would block any efforts to make it harder for religious organisations to discriminate against gays and lesbians.




Prostitution & Sex Trafficking

Explainer: Human trafficking and global efforts to abolish slavery


Joe Carter - Acton Blog



What is modern-day slavery? How many people today are enslaved? How much do traffickers earn for enslaving people? Who is most likely to be affected by modern-day slavery? What country has the highest percentage of slaves? Where are children most affected by modern-day slavery? What happens to teens caught up in slavery? What is the plan for ending slavery that these religious leaders are endorsing?




Govt to crack down on human slavery

The Echo



Australia will ramp up efforts to combat human trafficking, slavery and forced marriages with a five-year national action plan.




Refugees

Sailors talk of torment of pulling asylum seeker bodies from ocean


Sarah Whyte - The Age



Sailors from the Royal Australian Navy have described the torment and psychological distress of having to fish asylum seeker bodies out of the ocean as part of the country's border protection operations during the Labor government.




Religious Freedom & Persecution

Al-Shabab Claims Responsibility for Killing 36 quarry workers in Kenya


Laprensasa



The Somali al-Shabab Islamist militant group Claimed Responsibility for a massacre Tuesday at Least That left 36 workers dead quarry near the northern Kenyan town of Mandera. In a statement on the pro-Islamist Radio Andalus, al-Shabab Said Were some 40 Christian Kenyans killed in what the group called a "successful operation".




Christian children beheaded for refusing to convert to Islam

Mark Woods - Christian Today



Four Christian young people chose death rather than forced conversion, according to Canon Andrew White, the Vicar of Baghdad.




We must speak up for persecuted Christians in the Islamic world

Michael Coren - Breitbart



Just a few weeks ago Prince Charles, a man sometimes criticized for being too supportive and praising of Britain's Muslim community, made a passionate speech calling for the Islamic world to stop persecuting its Christian minorities. It was entirely coincidental but hugely significant that the same day of the royal statement, it was reported that a Christian couple had been beaten to death in Pakistan for allegedly defacing a copy of the Koran.




Other

'No Gender December': Greens Senator calls for end to gender-based toys


Judith Ireland - The Age



Cory Bernardi wants Santa to bring the Greens one thing for Christmas: "Common sense". In response to the party's campaign to stop parents from buying toys that gender stereotype their children, the Liberal Senator says that if boys get Barbie dolls and girls get monster trucks on December 25, the scene will be set for unhappy children "across the country". No Gender December




Twenty one reasons why gender matters

Gender Matters



We live in an age of gender confusion. Much of this is a result of the deliberate attempt by various social engineers to convince us that gender is not fixed or static, but fluid and changeable; that there are not two genders but many genders; that gender is really a social construct; that gender roles are interchangeable; that humans are really androgynous; and that gender is not important in human relationships.