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Pages tagged "ron boswell"
Time to fall in love with all of the baby Gammys in the world
· August 07, 2014 10:00 AM
Should baby Gammy have been born? Australians who raised $220,000 for the Thai-born Down syndrome baby’s medical costs think so.
It has been heartening to see the outpouring of compassion for him.
But the sad fact is not enough of us are willing to do what is needed to create the political environment in which public policy can be created that will protect such babies.
In Australia, if pre-natal testing reveals Down syndrome, the baby’s life is routinely ended through abortion.
Reflecting society, a majority of Australian parliamentarians long ago abandoned the idea that a Down syndrome baby was worth saving.
Our collective lack of compassion for the baby Gammys’ of the world was demonstrated during Senate hearings into the Medicare funding of abortion in 2008.
The Parliamentary Group on Population and Development told the Senate that Medicare funding of abortion was necessary because disabled babies might be born and become a drain on the disability services budget.
The submission was a word-for-word cut and paste of the submission of the radical pro-abortion group, the Australian Reproductive Health Alliance.
The short statured senator from Western Australia, Dr Alan Eggleston,
resigned from the group in protest
Several other parliamentarians, who didn’t know a submission advocating aborting the disabled to save money was lodged in their name, wrote letters saying they disagreed.
The former Nationals veteran Senator Ron Boswell told the Senate the views expressed by the PGP&D were
akin to the ‘Hitler regime’
which began killing the disabled before it did the Jews.
I think our society can do better.
A Toowoomba-based organisation seeking to help us in this is Emily’s Voice. They have produced a number of heart-warming stories about courageous people who have saved the lives of babies.
Here’s just one.
In Western Australia, ACL is supporting the Upper House MP Nick Goiran’s campaign to stop the practice of aborting babies post 20 weeks.
Mr Goiran has uncovered shocking statistics which show that since 2001, 474 babies were aborted after 20 weeks.
If you live in WA, please use our online campaigning website to send an
email to your local member of parliament.
In the same way we have fallen in love with baby Gammy abandoned by his biological parents in Thailand because he was disabled, we need to fall in love with the baby Gammys in our own backyard.
Why politics needs you
· June 26, 2014 10:00 AM
Valedictory speeches give an all-too-rare glimpse of the humanity of our parliamentarians.
If someone is giving one, it means they have either lost an election or have achieved the holy grail of politics – retiring at a time of one’s choosing.
These speeches are often inspirational and nostalgic but always emotional.
The Parliament is like a giant boarding school. When people leave, everyone notices.
Last week I wrote about outgoing Queensland Nationals Senator Ron Boswell’s valedictory speech.
With the Senate changing from July 1, the past week has seen more speeches, mostly by Labor Senators.
Valedictories shine light into the soul of parliamentarians and showcase what is good about our system of government.
Family, staff and comcar drivers are all thanked, sometimes through choking voices and watered eyes.
After 18 years in the Senate, the President John Hogg, also of Queensland, made a statement about his time in politics.
The Labor veteran has stood firm on many issues of concern to the Christian constituency and singled some of these out in his speech.
The difficult issues go to the issue of conscience. The hardest thing that I believe we all as members of parliament deal with is our conscience. We get some major challenges indeed. I look back on some of the issues that I have been asked to think about, vote about and speak about: euthanasia; stem cell research; cloning; RU486; same-sex marriage. My views are not necessarily shared on those issues by every other senator in this place or even some but, having a diversity of views is healthy. When those issues and their like are part of your DNA, you cannot expect people to walk away from their conscience. People—and I do not care what side of politics they are on—who have a view different to me are entitled to it. That is a fundamental of our system
Senator Hogg’s words are a subtle but important appeal not to allow political correctness to marginalise and silence people who have these views.
One Senator whose views are polar opposite to Senator Hogg’s is defeated Labor Senator Louise Pratt from Western Australia.
With her partner, Aram Hosie (who identifies as transgender), in the public gallery, Senator Pratt used her
to promote redefining marriage and the denial of human rights to the unborn.
I support the end of discrimination in the Marriage Act – not because it affects me, although it does affect me, but because equal rights for all Australians has always been a touchstone for me, in all aspects of my political involvement. I can assure you that that will remain the case in the future. More than 65 per cent of Australians agree with me. If this parliament truly reflected the views of those who elect us, marriage equality would be a reality.
“I support the right of women to make their own reproductive choices and not have government make those choices for them – and 80 per cent of Australians agree with me. I have been equally opposed to laws that force women to bear children when they do not want to and laws intended to prevent women from bearing children when they wish to...
Laws were finally changed in Victoria in 2010, finally giving women like me, regardless of their marital status, regardless of the gender of our partners or whether we have partners at all, access to the same legal rights to treatment as married women in this country.
Despite attempts to characterise views such as mine as radical, every piece of research in this country demonstrates that these views are shared by a majority of Australians. They are mainstream views, and it is those who deny them that are the extremists in our country
.” (Emphasis added)
I’m not sure 65 per cent of Australians would agree with same-sex marriage if the debate included discussion about its consequences for children losing a parent.
Senator Pratt and Aram are having a bab
y through assisted reproductive technology.
Also, I doubt 80 per cent of Australians, if properly informed of Victoria’s abortion-to-birth laws, would support those either.
It is disappointing that Senator Pratt thinks marriage between a man and a woman is “extremist”.
Other notable Labor departures from the Senate are New South Wales Senators Ursula Stephens, South Australian Don Farrell and Queenslander Mark Furner.
All have been strong advocates for the poor, indigenous, the unborn and the rights of children to a mum and a dad.
Senator Stephens burst into an Irish folk song at the end of her
, adding poignancy to her departure.
Senator Farrell was influential in convincing former Prime Minister Julia Gillard to hold the line on marriage.
Senator Furner will contest the Queensland State seat of Ferny Grove at the next Queensland election.
movingly of his participation in a Senate inquiry into petrol sniffing in indigenous communities.
“I believe we are responsible for the living standards of the first Australians,” Senator Furner said.
As can be seen from the radically different worldviews on display (and this from within one political party), it is vital that people with Christian values participate in the democratic process.
Senator Hogg was kind enough to give ACL’s Communications Director, Katherine Spackman, an
for the Political Spot in the President’s suite in the Senate this week .
In light of all that is written above, Senator Hogg’s words are a wake-up call to Christians.
“Do not place your faith, hope and trust in people such as myself. We need more than faith, hope and trust. We need your active participation in our democratic processes.”
Boswell bows out having 'fought the good fight'
· June 19, 2014 10:00 AM
One of the great parliamentary champions for families and the Judeo-Christian ethic, Ron Boswell (left), will leave the Senate next Thursday after 31 years.
His retirement will leave a big hole as he is a rare breed of principled public leader.
It is hard not to like the big man from Queensland.
He can be feisty in a debate but he has a heart of gold.
I know this because I had the privilege of working for him briefly as a staffer for eight months before I joined ACL.
ACL is of course non-party partisan but I hope you will indulge me because honour is due here.
I will have something to say in next week's blog about the good people from Labor who are leaving the Senate when their terms also end on June 30th.
But Ron has been a unique character.
Fiercely loyal to his beloved National party, having been mentored by former Queensland premier the late Sir Joh Bjelke Petersen, Ron is someone who had genuine respect from his political opponents.
This was evidenced by the large number of Labor and even Greens members (his most fearsome sparring partners) who were in the Senate chamber for his valedictory speech on Tuesday.
One of the few parliamentarians unashamed to stand up for the human rights of the unborn, he showed that causes unpopular with the media and political elites could be championed without jettisoning political credibility.
When the Parliamentary Group on Population and Development said in 2008 that Medicare funding of abortion was needed because the birth of disabled babies would be a drain on the disability services budget, Ron went to the defence of the defenceless.
In a speech to the Senate
, he said this was reminiscent of the "Hitler regime". It is hard to argue with that.
His Liberal Senate colleague, Alan Eggleston, resigned his membership of the PGP&D
in protest to the group’s submission
. Senator Eggleston, who also retires next week, was born with a condition that has left him short statured. He too will be missed.
Ron was a tireless champion for marriage and family and of course small business and primary industries.
I dropped by his Senate office an hour before his speech. "There'll be something in it for you guys", he said referring to the Christian constituency.
And in typical style Ron didn't disappoint.
There was hardly a dry eye when he told how much he missed his late son Stephen and then went on to say how he drew strength from God.
"In the Senate, I have always sought guidance and help from my God, and I acknowledge He has always had a guiding hand on my career. In the parliament of Australia, in the assembly of His people, I have always received constant help, and I offer my thanks."
I don't think Ron would mind me saying this, but I'd sometimes walk into his office and find him reading his Good News Bible, a permanent fixture on his desk.
He finished his speech quoting St Paul.
"My time of departure is at hand. I have fought the good fight. I have run the race. I have kept the faith.’ Thank you very much. God bless and goodbye."
ACL is very grateful for parliamentarians like Ron Boswell. We wish him and Leita all God's blessings for their future.
A transcript and Youtube clip of Senator Boswell's speech is available
MR: ACL calls on NT to reject RU486
· October 19, 2012 11:00 AM
For release: Friday, October 19, 2012
The Australian Christian Lobby (ACL) is calling on the Northern Territory (NT) government to reject legalising the chemical abortion pill RU486 because of the dangerous health risks it poses to women and unborn babies.
ACL spokeswoman Wendy Francis has expressed concern that those pushing for RU 486 in the Territory have not considered the health impacts.
“I encourage the NT government to consider the response of the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) to the Senate on the harm it has already caused to hundreds of women before it makes a judgement on whether to legalise the pill,” Ms Francis said.
In response to a question by Queensland Senator Ron Boswell during Senate Estimates earlier this year, the TGA said that since the drug was approved under the Authorised Provider Scheme in April 2006, there had been 832 reports of “adverse events” to women prescribed the drug.
Of the 832 women, 599 required surgery to remove the poisoned embryo after the failure of the drug to induce a miscarriage.
Ms Francis said tragically Australia had now recorded its first death of a woman who had been prescribed RU 486.
“Amazingly there has been no coronial investigation into this death and the NT Government should make no consideration to legalise the pill until this has occurred,” Ms Francis said.
“Women facing unsupported pregnancies should not be given a dangerous chemical to poison their unborn child and perhaps them – they should be offered real choices, including the option of support for keeping their unborn child,” Ms Francis said.
MR: Dangerous effects of RU486 being ignored by Parliament as those advocating for right to life labelled ‘anti-women’
· October 10, 2012 11:00 AM
For release: Wednesday 10 October 2012
The Australian Christian Lobby has renewed its call for the evidence about the harms to women of the chemical abortion drug RU486 to be considered in light of a speech being made by Health Minister Tanya Plibersek today promoting the drug.
ACL spokeswoman Wendy Francis has expressed concern that both political parties are ignoring the evidence about the safety of RU486.
“It is imperative that our government take into consideration the hundreds of women who have suffered major health issues after taking this drug,” Ms Francis said.
In response to a question by Senator Boswell, the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA)
told the Senate
earlier this year that since the drug was approved under the Authorised Provider Scheme in April 2006, there had been 832 reports of “adverse events” to women prescribed the drug.
“Of the 832 women, 599 required surgery to remove the poisoned embryo after the failure of the drug to induce a miscarriage.
“In 2010, a Melbourne woman tragically died after taking RU486. We need to ensure there is a coronial investigation into this tragedy before any licences are granted.
“Women facing unsupported pregnancies should not be given a dangerous chemical to poison them and their unborn child – they should be offered real choices, including the option of support for keeping their unborn child,” Ms Francis said.
ACL is alarmed that Ms Plibersek has associated herself with the Parliamentary Group on Population and Development – the host of today’s event – which holds extreme views about aborting the disabled to save money from the disability services budget (see their
to Senate Standing Committee, p. 10).
ACL is also concerned that the abortion debate has been dragged into the unseemly debate about sexism and misogyny in the Parliament.
“For Tony Abbott or any other person to be shut down in this debate about the health of women and life of unborn children and be labelled as ‘anti-women’ is a suppression of free debate,” Ms Francis said.
Senator Ron Boswell on The Political Spot
· September 25, 2012 10:00 AM
Senator Ron Boswell recently announced he plans to retire from the senate after his current term ends in 2014, having served for 31 years. He spoke with the ACL's Daniel Simon about his time as a senator.
MR: Adverse effects to women of RU 486 down-played as abortion provider granted import license
· August 30, 2012 10:00 AM
For release: Thursday, August 30, 2012
The granting of a licence to import the chemical abortion drug RU 486 to a subsidiary of the world’s biggest abortion provider is not in the best interest of women, according to the Australian Christian Lobby.
ACL spokeswoman Wendy Francis said the Therapeutic Goods Administration had seriously erred in granting a licence to Marie Stopes International to import RU 486.
Ms Francis said the
TGA had recently told Senate Estimates
, in response to a question from Queensland Senator Ron Boswell, that it did not collect information about RU 486 related deaths overseas.
TGA also told the Senate
, in response to a further question from Senator Boswell, that since the drug was approved under the Authorised Provider Scheme in April 2006, there had been 832 reports of “adverse events” to women prescribed the drug.
Of these, 599 required surgery to remove the poisoned embryo after the failure of the drug to induce a miscarriage.
“It is quite offensive that RU 486 is referred to as a medicine in some quarters. Pregnancy is not a disease and should not be stigmatised as such,” Ms Francis said.
This year it was revealed that a Melbourne woman had died in 2010 after RU 486.
“There should be a coronial investigation into this tragedy before any further licences are granted.
“Women facing un-supported pregnancy should be offered real choices by our society, not a dangerous chemical to poison their un-born child.
“As a society we do very poorly in promoting alternatives to women beyond chemical or surgical abortion and this is a tragedy for women and unborn babies,” Ms Francis said.
Senator Boswell on why Australians don’t want same-sex marriage
· September 01, 2011 10:00 AM
Queensland Senator Ron Boswell, along with Tasmanian Labor Senator Helen Polley, last week presented ACL’s 52,000 strong petition supporting marriage to the Senate.
Here, Senator Boswell gives his views on why Australians are not in favour of same-sex marriage.
52,000 PETITION SIGNATURES OPPOSE GAY MARRIAGE
“It’s obvious that there is a strong feeling in mainstream Australia to support the existing definition of marriage as the union of a man and a woman,” said The Nationals’ Senator Ron Boswell.
Senator Boswell tabled 52,000 signatures petitioning the Senate to defend this definition of marriage and not to permit recognition of any other form of relationship to be considered equal to marriage.
“The Greens called for feedback from the electorate on gay marriage and here is mine,” said Senator Boswell.
“Tens of thousands of Australians care enough to have signed this petition and that is a strong indication that there is significant opposition to changing the legal definition of marriage.”
“While many Australians support an individual’s private choice of partner, they do not want the uniqueness and essential character of marriage between a man and a woman to be changed.”
“It is not homophobic to respect the existing definition of marriage. It is respecting the foundations on which society is built, particularly the rights of children to a mother and father wherever possible.”
“Non-discrimination against same sex couples can co-exist with a commitment to children being born of and reared by a father and a mother in an unchanged definition of marriage.”
“International human rights law reflects this rational distinction. The International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights provides: 'The right of men and women of marriageable age to marry and to found a family shall be recognised.' The Covenant asserts: 'The family is the natural and fundamental group unit of society and is entitled to protection by society and the State.'”
Senator Boswell said that the Greens had picked a fight on the issue of gay marriage purely to create divisions in the ALP and hive off the left wing vote. “The sooner Labor puts the Greens last on preferences and recognises that they are an extreme and destructive force, the better off Australia will be.”
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