Friday, February 25, 2011

We've been suckered

A 14-year-old Bangladeshi girl named Hena Begum was raped by a 40-year-old married man. She was sentenced to 100 lashes for having engaged in an "affair." After 80 lashes, she fell unconscious and was taken to hospital, where she died.

A 23-year-old Saudi woman who was gang raped by five men was sentenced to 100 lashes and a year in jail. Also in Saudi Arabia, a 19-year-old girl gang raped by seven men was sentenced to 200 lashes and six months in jail.

That's sharia, Islamic law - cruel, barbaric, inhumane.

Radical (and not-so-radical) Islamists want to impose sharia law worldwide. Islamist expansionists are not content to see Islam sit alongside other religions. Islam must dominate.

The way Islam is taking over in the United States, in Britain, in Europe, is not by accident. We've been being prepared for it for years, and we haven't noticed.

We've been suckered.

In a remarkably perceptive piece, David Kupelian, managing editor of, explains how it's happened. Using a brilliant two-pronged strategy. . . No, I mustn't say more. He explains it best.

Do read the article. It's a must read. You owe it to yourself to read it.

You can see the whole thing by clicking here.

A tale of a mother's love

It's a sad, sad world. A world full of bad news. So here's some good news for a change.

Victoria Webster, from Birmingham, who is 33 years old, had a routine blood test when she was 21 weeks pregnant. She was found to have chronic myeloid leukaemia, or cancer of the blood.

Doctors said she had a good chance of recovery because they had caught the disease early, and wanted her to start chemotherapy immediately. There was a problem. Chemotherapy would kill her unborn daughter.

"To me, there was no decision to make," she said. "I had already bonded with my baby while she was growing inside me and as a mum, I had to protect her. Doctors kept telling me I should have a termination, but I had made up my mind. My husband supported me."

Mrs Webster opted for a less aggressive treatment. During the last three months of her pregnancy, her blood was drained from her body each week, "washed" by machine and replaced. "I was terrified," she said, "that even my milder treatment would have harmed Jessica."

But when her daughter was born, she was perfect. "We bonded straight away. Holding her in my arms was truly an amazing moment."

Mrs Webster, who also has a four-year-old son, began chemotherapy after the birth. She is responding well, and hopes soon to be in full remission.

"It's the best decision I have ever made," she said. "I can't imagine life without my daughter. I might have risked my life for her, but she was worth it."

Monday, February 21, 2011

Now: making a mockery of marriage

Marriage is wonderful, because God invented it.

Way back in Genesis, He laid down how it works. One man, one woman, one new family, one faithful, lifelong relationship.

When there's a picture in the paper of a toothless old couple, all smiles and hugs as they celebrate 70 years of marriage and tell how they've loved one other and always been faithful to each other, why do people say "Ah"? Because it's right, that's why.

The UK Government announced four days ago (along with an announcement that it will permit same-sex civil partnership ceremonies to be conducted in places of worship) that it is to "formally look" at redefining marriage so that homosexual couples can be married and get the same marriage certificate as a married man and woman.

Liberal Democrat Equalities Minister Lynne Featherstone wrote to supporters that she was "so pleased," "delighted" and "thrilled" that the Government was taking this action.

It is not the general public who asked for this - but just some homosexuals who want to destroy the family and redesign society. According to Government figures, one per cent in total of the population is homosexual (and 0.5 per cent bisexual). And the Government is bending over backwards, as usual, to accede to their every ideological fancy.

Conservative MP Edward Leigh said he was "astonished and disappointed" that the Government intended to do away with traditional marriage.

The right of homosexual couples to get on with their lives, he said, "does not extend to mangling the language of marriage so that, for the sake of a tiny number of gay people who prefer marriage to civil partnership, everyone else in society must have the definition of their own marriage altered forever.

"Once we have departed from the universally understood framework of marriage, there is no logical reason why the new alternative institution should be limited to two people. Why not three? Or 33?

"Same-sex couples already have all the rights of marriage in the form of civil partnership. Why must they also have the language of marriage? No doubt because it is an important symbol to them.

"But it is also an important symbol to many other people. Must the religious and cultural heritage of the whole nation be overturned to suit the demands of a minority even of the gay community itself?"

Wrote Melanie Phillips: "We are fast reaching the stage where upholding Biblical sexual standards will become the morality that dare not speak its name.

"We have to wonder at the way in which a politically motivated faction within a tiny minority of the population - for many gay people do not approve of this ideological gay rights agenda - is now running public policy.

"Cameron's latest idea proposes to make a mockery of marriage."

Redefining marriage from biblical marriage to a marriage crafted to suit homosexual ideology by politicians mad on "equality," if it succeeds, will be the biggest social engineering experiment, and one of the most disastrous, since who knows when.

So here's the question: Will the Christian church fight this issue, or will it sit silent in a self-induced daze?

Saturday, February 19, 2011

A 'bizarre' attack on Christian GP

After Dr Hans-Christian Raabe - I wrote about him here - was appointed by the Home Office to the Advisory Council on the Misuse of Drugs, people outside the Home Office realised he was a committed Christian who did not minimise the effects of illegal drug use, but believed in promoting drug abstinence.

A month later, before he had attended his first meeting with the council, he received a letter from the Home Office cancelling his appointment.

The reason given was that he had failed to disclose that he had co-authored a report in 2005 - nothing to do with drugs - expressing concern that paedophiles, according to research, included a disproportionate number of homosexuals. The report was freely available on the internet.

Peter Saunders points out that Dr Raabe was not alone in his concern. There have been a number of articles in peer-reviewed journals expressing similar views.

It now turns out that one of these was cited approvingly by the Home Office in 1998. In other words, Dr Raabe was sacked from the council for expressing a view that the Home Office had itself expressed.

"This is quite hypocritical and very bizarre indeed," said Dr Raabe. "I volunteered for unpaid public service and feel as though my personal and professional reputation has been shamefully destroyed by the Government for saying something it says itself."

According to the Independent, anti-drugs campaigners are calling on the Home Secretary, Theresa May, to apologise for "an unjustifiable personal and professional attack by her ministry."

David Raynes, of the National Drug Prevention Alliance, described the sacking as "a vicious and personal witchhunt orchestrated by pro-drugs campaigners." He added: "There remains a cabal of people on the committee who are sympathetic to the legalisation of all drugs. It can ill afford to lose people who act as a balance against this view."

A statement by the Home Office said Dr Raabe's failure to disclose the report raised concerns about his credibility to provide balanced advice on drug misuse issues and "impacts on the smooth running of the ACMD."

That last phrase perhaps gives a clue to the whole episode.

Elderly dying in NHS for lack of care

The National Health Service was once Britain's pride and joy. It is now a national disgrace.

Reports during the last 18 months tell of patients left in beds in corridors, offices, storage areas, kitchens, bathrooms and mop cupboards. Inspectors found filthy wards, blood-spattered walls, mouldy bathrooms and soiled furniture.

Up to 1,200 patients died needlessly in mid-Staffordshire, in part through "appalling" standards of hygiene. Up to 400 patients died in another hospital trust area because of an "appalling" lack of care. It was estimated that more than 3,000 patients could be dying needlessly every year.

Dehydration is said to contribute to the deaths of more than 800 hospital patients every year. Many succumb to malnutrition because of unappetising food, food left on tables out of reach of patients and nurses being too busy to help frail or elderly patients to eat.

It is not claimed that these things are standard in every hospital or with every patient: but the fact that they happen at all is bad enough.

A report by the Health Service Ombudsman published this week, scathing in its description of NHS care for the elderly, gives details of 10 of the large number of cases investigated by the ombudsman in a 12-month period.

One man with advanced stomach cancer was left for hours in agonising pain, without water, without toilet facilities, unable to summon help and so dehydrated he couldn't speak.

One woman was not given a bath or a shower during 13 weeks in hospital, did not have her wound dressings changed and was denied food and drink.

As a result of their suffering in the care of the NHS, the 10 had been transformed from alert and able individuals to people who were dehydrated, malnourished or unable to communicate. In many cases, their suffering was ignored. Nine of the 10 died while in NHS care or soon afterwards.

Said the ombudsman, Ann Abraham: "The findings of my investigations reveal an attitude - both personal and institutional - which fails to recognise the humanity and individuality of the people concerned and to respond to them with sensitivity, compassion and professionalism. . .

"These accounts present a picture of NHS provision that is failing to meet the most basic standards of care."

Michelle Mitchell, charity director of Age UK, said the inhumane treatment described in the report was "sickening."

Experts brought in to television studios to discuss the report spoke of the need for more training. But it doesn't need training to know that patients need food and water and need to be clean and comfortable.

The NHS budget has tripled in a decade and there are now almost more managers than beds. So will things improve?

Evidently not. This week's report says extra resources would not help because of the "casual indifference" of staff and their "bewildering disregard" for people's needs.

A health correspondent said on television the trouble is the culture in the NHS.

What does that mean? I can't do anything single handed, so there's no point trying? No one else bothers, so why should I? Whatever's wrong, it's somebody else's fault?

This could not possibly have happened 60 years ago.

Might I be permitted to suggest a deeper, more fundamental cause? This nation is a nation away from God, and a nation away from God breeds an uncaring people.

People who really care should be praying for the day this nation turns back to its Maker.

Saturday, February 12, 2011

But what about the babies?

A few days ago I wrote that Conservative MP Nadine Dorries had complained of a lack of support she had had from the churches for what she had done in Parliament regarding abortion.

There are many church leaders who never mention abortion in their churches for fear of upsetting some in their congregations. There are committed Christians in Bible-believing churches who, for lack of teaching, have no idea where they stand on the issue of abortion as far as the Bible is concerned. There are, I believe, born-again Christians who have abortions because they believe it is purely a social issue on which they are free to choose.

The Evangelical Alliance has published the first of a series of reports on the beliefs and habits of evangelical Christians in the UK. It is based on a survey of more that 17,000 Christians who are, it claims, as representative as possible of evangelical Christians in the UK in the 21st century. (You can read the details of the survey here.)

The report turns up some interesting figures. Ninety-six per cent attend a church service at least once a week. Ninety-three per cent strongly agree that the Bible is the inspired word of God and 91 per cent strongly agree that Jesus is the only way to God. Eighty-eight per cent strongly agree that their faith is the most important thing in their life.

Ninety-six per cent pray at least a few times a week; 77 per cent pray daily. (Only 77 per cent?) Eighty-three per cent strongly agree that the miraculous gifts of the Spirit did not come to an end in the first century.

But when it comes to belief on the matter of abortion, there is a significant change in the figures. Asked if they believed that abortion can never be justified, 20 per cent agreed a lot, and 17 per cent agreed a little. That leaves at least 63 per cent who presumably are prepared to allow abortion.

Perhaps it was the phrase about never being justified. Perhaps some would allow abortion in the event of suspected disability, or in the event of rape.

If you believe in abortion for suspected disability, let me ask you to do something. Seriously. Next time you see someone who is disabled, ask them if they would rather be dead. Ask if they would rather someone had taken their life rather than allow them to live. See what they say.

And abortion in the case of rape? It is unusual for women to conceive in the event of rape. But it does happen.

Women who have been raped have suffered a terrible, horrific experience. They deserve all the love, all the care and all the help they can get.

What they do not need is the additional trauma of having the baby torn from their body. Once a woman is pregnant, the most natural thing in the world is for the baby to come to term. A most unnatural thing is for the baby to be suddenly removed.

Abortion is the deliberate taking of human life. Even people in favour of abortion admit that. Abortion does not just make a woman unpregnant. It makes her the mother of a dead baby.

The woman did not want to be pregnant, certainly under such circumstances. To be sure, half the baby is the father's. But remember: half of the baby is hers. Given time, she can come to love that baby.

One more thing. That baby did not ask to be conceived in such circumstances. Why should an innocent baby have to die because of its father's sin?

I have been criticised - by some Christians - for the stand that I take on abortion. Our job, I have been told, is to preach the gospel. When people come to Christ, things like abortion will sort themselves out.

There is one thing wrong with that. Six hundred unborn babies in the UK will die by abortion today. Another 600 will die tomorrow. And a further 600 the day after that.

Knowing that abortion claims the lives of 200,000 babies in the UK each year - and that apart from the number of early abortions caused by the morning-after pill - am I to say nothing about it? Not even to offer women positive help at the most vulnerable time in their lives?

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Another victory for the PC Brigade?

The Advisory Council on the Misuse of Drugs, appointed to advise the Government on drugs issues, has long been criticised for its soft approach to drugs abuse.

Its chairman, Professor David Nutt, who said that cannabis, ecstasy and LSD are less harmful than alcohol and tobacco, was sacked in 2009. There was a suspicion then the council might resign en masse. In fact, only a handful left.

A month ago, the Government invited GP Hans-Christian Raabe to an unpaid post on the council. When others discovered that he was a committed Christian, favoured drug prevention as well as harm reduction and believed that strong family life could help in the battle against drug addiction, it appears their fury knew no bounds.

They delved into his background and discovered that he had signed a report with six other medical professionals six years ago which pointed out that according to research paedophiles included a disproportionate number of homosexuals, which, the report's authors said, was a matter for concern.

All that was said and done behind the scenes after that is not clear, but the Home Office has now written to Dr Raabe cancelling his appointment.

Labour's Shadow Home Secretary Yvette Cooper said Labour had warned Dr Raabe was an unsuitable candidate. It is not clear what she meant by "unsuitable."

Dr Peter Saunders, chief executive officer of the Christian Medical Fellowship, points out that Dr Raabe was sacked from his role as a drugs adviser because of a completely unrelated issue.

"The fact that the data he quoted [in the report he signed six years ago] were actually derived from peer-reviewed scientific articles, and on a matter where experts agreed there is a diversity of learned opinion, makes his dismissal both outrageous and inexcusable.

"In bowing to political pressure on the matter the Home Office has demonstrated intolerance, ignorance, cowardice and an unwillingness to investigate complaints properly."

Dr Raabe said he had been the target of "vicious, hate-filled personal abuse." He had been discriminated against because of his opinions and beliefs, which were in keeping with the teaching of the major churches. He had, he said, been sacrificed on the altar of political correctness.

I confess a particular interest in the matter. Dr Raabe is a personal friend. He and I have worked together on a number of Christian events.

Hans-Christian Raabe is not only a committed Christian. He is a man of integrity who works tirelessly for the public good, often at considerable expense to himself.

Having his appointment revoked by the Home Office says more about the Home Office than it does about him.

Monday, February 07, 2011

The church: 'weak, cowardly' and 'pathetic'

Two stories about abortion made the news recently.

The first was about an Australian couple who have three sons. The couple underwent IVF because they wanted a daughter. The wife became pregnant with twins, but both were male, so the couple aborted both babies so they could have another try.

Some people were shocked. But if abortion is acceptable under some circumstances, under what circumstances is it not acceptable?

A professor of medicine said they should be allowed to select the gender of their child (gender selection during IVF is currently unlawful in Australia). "I can't see how it could possibly hurt anyone," he said.

What about the two babies who were aborted?

The second story concerned the arrest of Kermit Gosnell, an American abortionist who is said to have made millions of dollars from late term abortions. His abortion clinic was apparently replete with bloodstained furniture, unsterilised instruments and bags of aborted babies.

With six, seven and eight-month pregnancies, Gosnell is alleged to have induced the births, then killed the live babies by stabbing them in the neck with scissors and snipping their spinal cords. He has been charged with eight counts of murder.

An official investigation turned up the fact that for political reasons - pro-abortion political reasons, that is - his abortion premises had not been inspected by the department of health since 1993.

In the UK, Conservative MP Nadine Dorries says she has been suffering vitriolic attacks on blogs and on Twitter because of her stand on abortion. "The only controversial issue I've ever taken up is abortion," she says, "and that's the only hook to hang it on."

And Mrs Dorries is not pro-life: she is not opposed to abortion under all circumstances, although she has campaigned for a reduction in the upper age limit for abortion and she is campaigning for women contemplating abortion to be given adequate information.

She says she needs the churches to be more involved. "The churches have been pathetic during the abortion debate in their support for what I was trying to do.

"The Church of England was the worst, and the only person in the Catholic Church who made any comment was Cardinal O'Brien. Everybody was silent because the churches were weak and cowardly in their position.

"I was even told by one envoy from the Church [of England] that Psalm 139 was 'just poetry.' Weeks later they timidly came out and squeaked their words of support, which were no use to me at this point."

Abortion is the deliberate taking of human life. If the church isn't going to stand up on abortion, who is?

Thursday, February 03, 2011

Tumultuous times

Egypt is in turmoil. Its regime, it appears, is coming rapidly to an end. The danger is that a new regime could be worse than the last.

As concerned as anyone is little Israel, already with enemies sworn to its destruction at its borders. The peace negotiated by the then Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin and Egypt's then President Anwar Sadat has been a cold peace, but peace nevertheless. A new regime in Egypt could tear up the peace agreement.

David Horovitz, editor-in-chief of the Jerusalem Post, writes in the Telegraph:

Despite the general excitement, the outcome could be a grim one for Israel, and for the West more generally.

In the past few weeks, we have seen a president ousted in Tunisia. We've seen protests in Yemen. We've seen Iran essentially take control of Lebanon, where its proxy, Hizbollah, has ousted a relatively pro-Western prime minister and inserted its own candidate. We've seen the King of Jordan rush to sack his Cabinet amid escalating protests. We've seen reports that similar demonstrations are planned for Syria, where the president, Bashar Assad, will find it far harder to get away with gunning down the crowds than his father did in 1982. And most dramatically, we are seeing the regime in Egypt - the largest, most important Arab country - totter, as President Mubarak faces unprecedented popular protest, and the likelihood that he will have to step down sooner rather than later.

It is tempting to be smug. Egypt's blink-of-an-eye descent into instability underlines afresh the uniqueness of Israel, that embattled sliver of enlightened land in a largely dictatorial region. Those who like to characterise it as the root of all the Middle East's problems look particularly foolish: the people on the streets aren't enraged by Israel, but because their countries are so unlike Israel, so lacking in the freedoms and economic opportunities that both Israeli Jews and Israeli Arabs take for granted.

Yet the country is deeply concerned. The main worry is over a repeat of the events in Iran a little over 30 years ago, when popular protest ousted the Shah, only to see him replaced by a far more dangerous, corrupt, misogynist and intolerant regime. Iran is plainly delighted by what is unfolding. With peerless hypocrisy, a government that mowed down its own people less than two years ago is encouraging the same spirit of protest in Egypt. Its allies in the Moslem Brotherhood are well placed to fill any leadership vacuum - and, for all the group's dubious claims to be relatively moderate, it embraces leadership figures deeply hostile to Israel and the West. The Muslim Brotherhood, it should not be forgotten, gave birth to Hamas, the terrorist group which now runs Gaza, after killing hundreds in its takeover.

The danger for the Egyptians is that, when the protests are over, their brave efforts will have replaced Mubarak not with a leadership more committed to freedom and democracy, but quite the reverse. Yet for Israelis, it underlines the challenges we face when it comes to peacemaking.

Our country, it is often forgotten, is 1/800th of the size of the Arab world, only nine miles wide at its narrowest point. We are not some territorial superpower that can afford not to care if there is hostility all around: we desperately need normalised relations with our neighbours. But if we do a lousy deal with a regime that is either unstable or not genuinely committed to reconciliation, the consequences could be fatal. . .

You can read the rest of the article here.

Tuesday, February 01, 2011

Telling it like it is

Margaret Forrester is the NHS employee in the London borough of Camden who got into serious trouble with her employer because she discussed her views on abortion with a colleague. I wrote about her here.

During an informal conversation about abortion - not with a client, but with a colleague - she gave the colleague a booklet giving examples of post-abortion syndrome suffered by five women from Taunton, Somerset. She did so, she said, because she was concerned that women contemplating abortion were not given enough information about the risks involved.

She was later sent home on special leave with full pay, ordered not to see any patients and to stay away from any NHS site while an investigation was carried out, and called before an internal disciplinary committee accused of "distributing materials some people may find offensive."

The decision of the disciplinary committee has now been announced. Miss Forrester was apparently not censured, and has been offered a better job.

Just a question: Would she have escaped censure and would she have been offered a better job if her case had not had nationwide publicity?

Claire Murdoch, chief executive of Central and North-west London NHS Foundation Trust - Miss Forrester's employer - said "The booklet Miss Forrester distributed offers a seriously unbalanced and one-sided view of abortion. . . The booklet implies that abortion can lead to alcohol and drug abuse, suicidal thoughts and increased risk of cancer."

There is something I would like to point out to Ms Murdoch.

Abortion can lead to drug and alcohol abuse and suicidal thoughts and can - and sometimes does - lead to cancer.

If anyone needs proof of that, there is ample evidence available.