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.



UK: The promiscuity pill: £30 morning-after tablet that can be taken five days later 'will lead to unsafe sex'

Sophie Borland - Daily Mail

From today, any woman aged 18 or over will for the first time be able to buy the powerful medication – called EllaOne –from certain branches of the Co-operative Pharmacy. But campaigners say that because it can be taken so long after conception it is an early form of abortion. There are also concerns that it will encourage unprotected sex as women will see it as a ‘safety net’ – leading to higher rates of promiscuity and sexually transmitted infections.

Children & Family

Hundreds of parents banned from overseas travel over unpaid child support

Natasha Bita - News Limited Network

Travel bans on "deadbeat dads" and mothers who fail to pay child support have more than doubled in two years. But the federal government's reliance on "departure prohibition orders'' to force parents to pay their debts has been rocked by a tribunal’s ruling to let a father move to Indonesia for a "better lifestyle".


We must be free to insult each other: Rowan Atkinson attacks new rules that outlaw 'insulting words and behaviour'

Daniel Martin - Daily Mail

Rowan Atkinson is demanding a change in the law to halt the ‘creeping culture of censoriousness’ which has seen the arrest of a Christian preacher, a critic of Scientology and even a student making a joke. The Blackadder and Mr Bean star criticised the ‘new intolerance’ behind controversial legislation which outlaws ‘insulting words and behaviour’. Launching a fight for part of the Public Order Act to be repealed, he said it was having a ‘chilling effect on free expression and free protest’.


Trawler ban may cost taxpayers millions

Matthew Denholm - The Australian

Taxpayers may be exposed to millions of dollars in compensation as a result of the Gillard government's decision to ban the Abel Tasman super-trawler for two years. Seafish Tasmania, the proponent of the 143m-long ship, has legal advice that suggests it has a good case to overturn the federal ban - imposed by federal Environment Minister Tony Burke last month - on the grounds of procedural unfairness.


Time for politicians to recognise the right to die with dignity

Sarah Edelman - SMH

This year I witnessed the slow and distressing death of my father. In the advanced stages of stomach cancer, the last weeks of his life were spent in a palliative care centre. His mood lifted at first at the sight of the great facilities. The nursing staff were very kind and attentive and he received daily visits from a doctor.

Easing death

The Economist

Since 1999, when an American court gave Jack Kevorkian a lengthy jail sentence after he admitted helping 130 patients to die, a big change has quietly taken place. Next month voters in Massachusetts will decide whether a terminally ill patient, with less than six months to live, will be able to ask for a doctor’s help in committing suicide.

Homelessness & Poverty

Poverty is only a part of the school lunch problem

David Penberthy - The Punch

There are 45,000 households in Australia which don’t have enough money to feed their children. According to figures released by Anglicare this week, 22,000 of these households go without food at least one full day every week. Almost one in 10 of the people in these homes are kids. On most days they go to school without eating breakfast, and often without a packed lunch.

Human Rights

Faith-based initiatives deserve a place in the public sphere

Ryan Messmore - The Australian

What's the most significant threat to religious liberty in the West? The violence of radical protest groups? Lawsuits of secularists bent on scrubbing religion from the public square? Or might a more pernicious - because more subtle - threat lie at hand: the narrowing of religious liberty to a mere "freedom of worship"? A robust freedom of religion protects the ability to live out one's faith in the day-to-day activities and decision-making of public life. A watered-down freedom of worship, by contrast, protects just the ability to profess the faith, and join the church, of one's choice.


Why should polygamy be a crime?

Keysar Trad - SMH

In June last year, Triple J's current affairs program Hack ran an item on plural relationships. The ABC's youth broadcaster interviewed me about polygyny, a form of polygamous marriage in which a man has more than one wife at the same time. A bisexual couple were also interviewed. To my surprise, I was reported on the ABC's respected current affairs program AM the next morning. Without speaking to me again and after seeking comments from the Attorney-General's office, AM ran the line: “Undeterred Keysar Trad says he's hoping to find another wife to join his family. To do so, he says, would be to honour his first wife.”


Leaders shape up to woo Greens

Noel Towell, Lisa Cox, Ross Peake - Canberra Times

Canberra Liberals leader Zed Seselja says talks with the ACT Greens about forming government will be subject to ''parameters''. Mr Seselja has again ruled out a ministry for the Greens in any alliance or coalition. He said yesterday that he would move to open negotiations today.

ACT poll shows voters 'wary of Greens', says Arthur Sinodinos

The Australian

A big swing to the Liberals in the ACT election shows voters in the territory are wary of the Australian Greens, senior Liberal senator Arthur Sinodinos says. While it's still not clear whether the Liberals or Labor will hold power, neither major party will be able to govern without the support of the remaining Greens MPs.

Prostitution & Sex Trafficking

Kill case relied on provocation

Harriet Alexander - SMH

It was the first time that Patricia Mary Butler had ventured back to the streets since she was sexually assaulted by a client two weeks earlier. But in her fragile emotional state, she could not have landed a worse client than the one who pulled up to the corner of Bourke and William streets in the early hours of July 31, 2010. And with his particular fetish, he could not have landed a worse girl. Brendan Potter was into child sex, and fantasised about it while Butler performed sex acts in Rushcutters Bay Park, and later at her Potts Point apartment.

Religious Freedom & Persecution

Rape & murder of Pakistan's Christian children

Raymond Ibrahim - Family Security Matters

The West sighed in relief when Rimsha Masih, the 14-year-old Christian girl arrested in Pakistan on August 16 for allegedly burning pages of the Quran, was finally released. Yet the West remains clueless concerning the graphic abuses-including rape and murder-Christian children in Pakistan routinely suffer, simply for being Christian. Consider two stories alone, both of which occurred at the same time Rimsha's blasphemy ordeal was making headlines around the world.

Baby Jesus 'barred' from Christmas market

The Local

A nativity scene planned for a popular Christmas market in southern Sweden has been cut after the organizers felt it compromised their “political and religious independence”.


Schoolgirl who visited 'suicide sites' found dead on train tracks: Campaigners call for ban on web pages that glamorise self-harm

Emma Reynolds - Daily Mail

A 15-year-old schoolgirl who was found dead on the tracks at London's St Pancras station had visited a website featuring self harm and anorexia, campaigners said today. They called for websites to be forced to remove content that glamorises suicide and self harm to help prevent any more deaths like that of the private school pupil from Hampstead. Tallulah was struck by a train on Sunday after posting messages on Twitter about killing herself.

Why defence is afraid of women warriors

Patrick Lion - The Sunday Telegraph

Secret Defence documents have revealed an extraordinary litany of reasons why it fears letting women fight in frontline combat roles - including increased sexual harassment, litigation, deaths and battlefield pregnancies. The concerns include "almost certain" personal privacy problems while working with men, males trying to protect females in war zones and women being considered not "credible" in combat.