Pope Francis slams eugenic mentality behind down-syndrome abortions

Pope Francis has condemned the “eugenicist” mindset behind increased rates of abortion of children with down-syndrome, saying that people with disabilities face an “attitude of rejection” in contemporary society.

The Pope’s remarks were made at a conference on the inclusion of people with disabilities in parish life, held at the Vatican last weekend.

Addressing an audience of hundreds in the Clementine Hall, the Roman Pontiff said that the desire to “suppress the unborn who have some form of imperfection” was proof of a “eugenic tendency” within society, and he warned of the… click here to read whole article and make comments

Voluntary Assisted Dying Bill passes Victoria’s Lower House

Australians watched this week as Victoria’s State parliament debated the government-sponsored Voluntary Assisted Dying Bill 2017.

The bill – which would allow assisted suicide and euthanasia for terminally ill patients with less than 12 months to live – has been fiercely criticised by parliamentarians from all sides of politics, and even faced a scare from Deputy Premier James Merlino, who on Wednesday evening unsuccessfully attempted to put the legislation on an indefinite hold. In a marathon 26 hour sitting of parliament on Thursday and Friday, opponents of the legislation proposed more than 150 amendments,… click here to read whole article and make comments

Does Asia have a distinctive bioethics?

The Western concept of autonomy, which dominates in the Anglo-American world at the moment, needs to be adapted in Asia to take account of local cultures.

In a very interesting article in The New Bioethics, Mark Tan Kiak Min, Principal Assistant Director at the Medical Legislation and Globalization branch of the Ministry of Health Malaysia, argues that there is one feature which shared by the complex diversity of Asian cultures: the importance of the family.

“Within a concept quite alien to the West, the individual is regarded as a smaller self within a larger self, where the… click here to read whole article and make comments

After 15 years, will the Dutch finally prosecute a euthanasia doctor?

For the first time since the legalisation of euthanasia in 2002, a doctor may be prosecuted for not following the letter of the law, according to a report in the BMJ.

The case, which was reported by BioEdge in February, concerned a 80-year-old woman with dementia who entered a nursing home because her husband could no longer care for her. When the woman was still lucid she expressed two wishes: (a) not to go into a "home for demented elderly" and (b) to be euthanised "when I myself find it the right time". Only the second wish was… click here to read whole article and make comments

Iran’s legal market in kidneys creates a black market, too

ads posted in Teheran offering to sell kidneys  

Iran is the only country in the world where people can sell their kidneys legally. According to a report in the Los Angeles Times, recipients pay US$4,600 to the government transplant, and the donor (or seller) receives this when the operation is over.

“Yes, people donate because they need money, but this is a reality all over the world,” said Nasser Simforoosh, a Tehran transplant surgeon. “Instead of doing something illegal to cover their debts, like stealing or smuggling, they are saving a life first. This is not… click here to read whole article and make comments

Burial rights do not extend beyond death

flowers at Saddleworth Moor where some of the victims were buried

Where and how should the most hated man in England be buried? Ian Brady and his lover Myra Hindley were described by the trial judge as "sadistic killers of the utmost depravity". They tortured and killed five children between 1963 and 1965.

Hindley died in 2002 and Brady finally passed away on May 17. He left explicit instructions in his will about how to dispose of his body. But such is the hatred of the “Moors Murderer” that local authorities want nothing to do with him. As… click here to read whole article and make comments

Mary Stopes staff pressured into pursuing abortions

As Britain marks the 50th anniversary of the 1967 Abortion Act, one of the country’s major abortion providers has gone into damage control after allegations of coercive staff performance policies.

The UK’s Care Quality Commission (CQC) this month released the results of a comprehensive inspection of Marie Stopes’ Maidstone clinic — an abortion facility in a country town. The report suggests that staff from the facility were being pressured into into “encouraging” women to have abortions. The report states:

“Staff [from the Marie Stopes’ Maidstone clinic] expressed concern that they were assessed and… click here to read whole article and make comments

Calls for commercial surrogacy in Australia as children get ‘stranded’

An Australian couple living in the US has discovering that they will not be recognised as the parents of their surrogate-born children if they return home. 

David and Naomi Seddon were married in the US and had two baby girls via a commercial surrogate in California. The girls are US citizens, but will not be recognised as children of the Seddon’s under Australian law. Strictly speaking, the girls will only be eligible for a 90-day Australian tourist visa if the Seddons were to be forced  to return to Australia for good.

“If… click here to read whole article and make comments

Shrinks ganging up on Trump

A group of American psychiatrists is still trying hard to use the 25th Amendment to the US Constitution to depose President Donald Trump. About 67,000 people have signed a change.org petition “Mental Health Professionals Declare Trump is Mentally Ill And Must Be Removed”.

Duty to Warn, an initiative of clinical psychologist John Gartner, accuses the President of having a narcissistic personality disorder and being delusional and dangerous. Its argument is that under the 25th Amendment Trump should be removed on the grounds that he is psychologically unfit.

As you might expect, this has some support from Democrats in… click here to read whole article and make comments

Trump’s health department takes a pro-life turn

The new strategic plan for the US Department of Health and Human Services has accomplished the impossible -- getting progressives to hanker for the good old days of the Bush Administration.

Every four years the HHS publishes its plan for comment. This one, if approved, will run from 2018 to 2022.

What caught the eye of journalists was a revision of the HHS mission statement. This now reads “HHS accomplishes its mission through programs and initiatives that cover a wide spectrum of activities, serving and protecting Americans at every stage of life, beginning at conception.” It also uses phrases… click here to read whole article and make comments

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