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.


Ways to reduce the incidence of abortion

Catholic News

A one off opportunity to see and hear an exceptional Pro-Life speaker from the U.S.A. on ways to reduce the incidence of abortion and it's after effects on women. Mrs. Cindy Collins, who has represented Endeavour Forum as an observer at the United Nations Commission on the Status of Women meetings in New York and is the Director of a centre that counsels post-abortive women will be speaking at Terrigal Catholic Church Hall.

Children & Family
Absent fathers and murderous mothers

Emma Jane - The Punch

The murder of 10-year-old Zahra Baker was horrific. No surprises there. Homicides are rarely known for their rainbows, fluffy puppies and happy endings. But there is one aspect of the killing that is especially shocking – not because it reflects a particularly perverse aspect of criminality but because it exemplifies a family problem that is so prevalent it’s rarely seen as a problem. I’m speaking here of absent fathers.

Beyondblue chief resigns

The chief executive of beyondblue, a national non-profit initiative to combat depression, has quit after just eight months in the job. Beyondblue provided no explanation for Dawn O'Neil's decision, which chairman Jeff Kennett announced today. A spokeswoman refused to comment on whether Ms O'Neil's resignation was related to comments made by Mr Kennett in a newspaper opinion piece earlier this month. Citing For Kids' Sake research commissioned by the Australian Christian Lobby, Mr Kennett said the best environment in which to raise a child is a stable, loving marriage between a man and a woman.

Drugs & Alcohol
Wind back pub hours to reduce booze-fuelled violence, fed-up doctors say

Alison Sandy - The Courier-Mail

Doctors are demanding pubs and clubs be forced to close earlier as more patients than ever are treated for injuries caused by booze-fuelled violence. Despite recent Queensland Government reforms, the Royal Australasian College of Surgeons said closing times needed to be wound back to 2am to help stem the carnage. Doctors warn revellers should "get out of town" by 2am, because after that, "they're liable to be assaulted".

Nile told to drop ethics class fight

Josephine Tovey State Politics - SMH

MOST religious groups that conduct scripture classes in schools have urged the Christian Democrat MP Fred Nile to drop his campaign against ethics classes, arguing the fight is over.

Gonorrhoea, chlamydia rates surging

Health experts are calling for a sex education revolution to help stem what is being described as an epidemic of sexually transmitted infections sweeping the nation.
New gonorrhoea diagnoses jumped by 25 per cent over 2009 levels to 10,000 last year, while there were more than 74,000 new chlamydia cases, according to figures to be issued at an Australasian HIV/AIDS Conference in Canberra today.

Distortion of History? Professor Edwin Judge
Peter Gooch - ABC

What would be a good way to distort your childs education? Re-write what they are taught and leave out important bits. But what are the important bits? That is where the debate is. Its been revealed that the new curriculum is removing references to BC & AD in the schools.

ALP voters closer to Liberals than Greens: survey

Stephen Lunn - The Australian

The core social values of Labor voters are far more closely aligned with Coalition supporters than Greens, a new social cohesion survey finds. On a range of questions - such as valuing the "Australian way of life", concern over immigration rates, the importance of migrants "blending in" and whether climate change is the nation's most pressing problem - the response from Labor voters was more in sync with Coalition supporters than Greens.

Euthanasia advocate plans to import restricted sleeping pill

Euthanasia advocate Dr Philip Nitschke plans to import a restricted powerful sleeping pill for two terminally ill patients under a scheme offered by the Australian drug regulator that allows doctors to treat life-threatening diseases with medicines that have not gone through formal clinical trials.

The right to die: Australia's euthanasia debate
By Matthew Benns, Sydney – Telegraph UK

Dr Philip Nitschke assisted three people to die after the Northern Territory Government passed the controversial Rights of the Terminally Act in 1995 and then voided it in 1997.

Footy codes 'must curb problem gambling'


The AFL and rugby league codes have a responsibility to their supporters and fans to curb problem gambling, Human Services Minister Tanya Plibersek says. AFL chief executive Andrew Demetriou and club presidents are meeting on Monday to devise campaign strategies against the federal government's proposal to introduce pre-commitment technology on poker machines by 2014.

Editorial: Prime Minister plays a poor hand

As with all of the major policy problems confronting the Prime Minister and her increasingly destabilised Government, the mandatory pokies legislation is an issue of her own making.

The real victims are the addicts and their families

I have to take a deep breath before penning this letter as I am outraged (''AFL puts the boot into pokie plans'', September 26). Problem gamblers do not get to ''decide'' whether they will gamble or not. They are suffering a mental illness; that of addiction.

Reformed gambler sees merit in pre-set limit on poker machines
Malcolm Brown – SMH

RALPH BRISTOW, 71, who had his first bet at the age of eight and has gambled for much of his life, believes that a pre-set limit on poker machine gambling would have helped him in all the years he blew away a fortune.

Labor in spin over backlash on pokies
Phillip Coorey - SMH

THE Attorney-General, Robert McClelland, has joined the growing ranks of Labor MPs anxious about poker machine reforms, saying clubs are justified in demanding more information to show the changes will work and that there should first be a trial.

Editorial: Clubs should not add to gamblers' woes

Modifying pokies does not mean taxing footy.

Indigenous issues
Aboriginal action analysis fails Rann

Michael Owen and Lauren Wilson

The Rann government has failed to carry out recommendations on improving safety and well-being in remote South Australian Aboriginal communities, an analysis of action since 2008 shows.

Remote disadvantage even worse than reported
Helen Hughes

In February, the Productivity Commission released Indigenous Expenditure Report 2010 showing that an additional $5.1 billion was spent in 2008-09 on specifically Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander programs.

The benefits of marriage

Health Canal

Marriage can potentially help reduce crime by enabling people to develop greater self-control, according to a new study examining changes in marital status, self-control and marijuana use between late adolescence and early adulthood. The study by Dr Walter Forrest, Senior Lecturer in Criminology at Monash University and Associate Professor Carter Hay, from Florida State University found that young marijuana users who went on to marry were less likely to have continued using the drug than those who remained single.

Let's teach union rules to cut divorce rate
Alan Howe - Herald Sun

Dr Alan Tapper, a senior research fellow for applied ethics and philosophy at Curtin University, has been looking at these demographics and the fallout of failed marriages for decades. And when it comes to the growing criminal dividend of divorce - that rising incidence of crime that hogs space in daily newspapers - he is in no doubt: "Family breakdown, in the form of divorce and separation, is the main cause of the crime wave."

Round seven for South Australian prostitution laws

Greg Kelton - The Advertiser

The South Australian Parliament will again look at changing the laws around prostitution in the state. Starting with a former Liberal attorney-general in the late 1970s and ending with another rebel Liberal, Mark Brindal in 2003, there have been six previous attempts to change the state's prostitution laws.

ALP voters closer to Liberals than Greens: survey

Stephen Lunn, Social affairs writer The Australian

THE core social values of Labor voters are far more closely aligned with Coalition supporters than Greens, a new social cohesion survey finds.

Religious Persecution
Second death confirmed in Solo suicide blast

Jakarta Globe

At least two people had been confirmed dead in a suicide attack in a church in Solo. Bambang Sumartono, an official at Dr. Oen hospital, said that 20 people, including a child, were admitted to the hospital, and one of the victims, a teenager, died in the emergency room.

NGO report: 93,000 Copts left Egypt since March
Emad Khalil - almasryalyoum

Nearly 93,000 Coptic Christians have left Egypt since 19 March, a report by an Egypt-based Coptic NGO has said. The number may increase to 250,000 by the end of 2011, according to Naguib Gabriel, the head of the Egyptian Federation of Human Rights, which released the report.

Flatlining on trust but sympathy for refugees rises
David Marr - SMH

OUR hopes for government rose and fell with Kevin Rudd. When Rudd was flying high as prime minister in mid-2009, nearly half of us believed the government could be trusted to do the right thing for the Australian people almost always or most of the time.

Holding asylum seeker children likened to abuse
Kirsty Needham - SMH

DETENTION of asylum seeker children was so damaging it should be considered child abuse, a parliamentary inquiry has been told.

Detaining children 'akin to abuse', says AMA
Lanai Vasek

Asylum-seekers as young as nine are being admitted to hospital for self-harm injuries, an inquiry into the nation's detention network has been told.

Refugee challenges department for 'unfairly barring his family'
Rebecca Puddy

A refugee who arrived in Australia as an unaccompanied minor is fighting an immigration ruling denying a reunion with his family.

Detention of minors 'wrong, ridiculous', says Leonora mayor
Nicolas Perpitch

Leonora Shire President Jeffery Carter has condemned the Gillard government's decision to lock up unaccompanied asylum-seeker children in his desert town's detention centre.

Not prejudiced on asylum issue
Andrew Markus The Australian

IN the debate over asylum all sides believe there is an answer: and they have it. Human rights advocates argue the only humane course of action is to welcome those who arrive by boat.

Sexualisation of Society
Australia has gonorrhoea and chlamydia epidemic as couples fail to practice safe sex

Australia is in the grip of a gonorrhoea and chlamydia epidemic with a surge in cases in the past year. Newly diagnosed cases of chlamydia leapt 17 per cent to 74,305 in 2010, while those for gonorrhoea rose 25 per cent to just over 10,000. The figures feature in the latest surveillance report on HIV, viral hepatitis and sexually transmitted infections (STIs) released today by the University of NSW's Kirby Institute.


Happy 400th birthday King James Bible!

This year the King James Bible turns 400. It seems a relatively modest number in the scheme of things. Jesus had been around 1600 years before this translation saw the light of day. Since that time in the year of Our Lord 1611, the Authorised King James version has been acclaimed for its peerless prose, mocked for its archaic language, usurped by more modern versions and venerated for being a bedrock institution of our culture.

Dogmatism derails both sides of religious debate
Roy Williams - The Punch

One of the ugliest aspects of the culture wars is dogmatism, the inability of either side to respect the other’s point of view. Nowhere is this vice more prevalent than among protagonists in the so-called God debate. It’s fine to be passionate about your belief (or unbelief). But it’s wrong to demonise dissenters. Far too often today Christians are dismissed by their critics as deluded fundamentalists, relics of a past era who have jettisoned reason and common sense. Just as frequently, Christians disparage atheists and agnostics – even fellow Christians with whom they disagree on one point or another – as unprincipled or immoral.

Who can you trust to be in charge? Snapshot of a nation losing its faith
David Marr - SMH

WE ARE growing distrustful and gloomy; we doubt government does the right thing by the Australian people; most of us don't trust one another; and though we are generally optimistic about our futures, there has been a sharp rise in the number of us who fear being worse off in two or three years' time.