Archive for December, 2012

Playing a Vital Role in Preventing the Next Newtown…

Tuesday, December 18th, 2012

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The events in Newtown, CT are very tragic and yet the shootings and deaths were just hours old when the blame game began.  We seem to have a need to assign blame as a way to move on when crisis strikes but I would like to propose a different take on things.

I think we begin in our homes and families.  You can complain all you want about the violence in movies and TV but you the parents are responsible for how much of that violence you allow into your home.  You also control the movies your children see.  Let’s not forget the video and computer games you purchase for your children.  Again, where is the violence filter in your home?

Now everyone is turning to God and going to Church for comfort with their families but wait and see in a few weeks, just like after Sept. 11th the Churches will empty out again.  Why is it we only seem to turn to  God, His Churches and clergy when we are in a crisis?

Then there are those brave teachers that are rightfully being honored for laying their lives down for their students.  Everyone is praising them and rightfully so but that’s not the attitude that many in this country have for those in the teaching profession.  Parents are very quick to criticize their child’s teacher and right in front of their children, even questioning homework assignments and other classroom activities.  So too the praising of the teaching profession will also fade in a few weeks time.

Also the talk about attacking the second amendment, our right to bear arms.  Let’s stop and think for a minute.  All those who currently own guns legally, are they kept in a safe place under lock and key?  If not, then why not?  Yes some guns like high powered assault weapons should be banned from average citizens and used only by law enforcement and the military.  Think about it, when was the last time you heard a deer hunter using an assault multi-clip rifle?   Ammunition by mail order;  isn’t that ridiculous?

So as we are trying to figure out why this young man did what he did and the media will continue to press for answers, let’s see what improvements we can make in our own homes and in our neighborhoods.  Let’s turn off the violence and tune into spending more quality time with our children and loved ones.

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Morning- after contraception for teens is another attack on parental rights

Wednesday, December 5th, 2012

It is really no surprise that the American Academy of Pediatrics is advocating for teenage girls to receive prescriptions for morning after contraception so they’ll have it just in case. I say it’s no surprise because a 1993 study revealed that 60 percent of the academy’s membership favored abortion for teenagers with “undesired” pregnancies and because the academy has jumped on the “free contraception for all” bandwagon mandated by President Obama’s health-care law.

As Catholics, we oppose both the use of artificial contraception and sex outside of marriage. As pro-lifers, we oppose this “morning after” contraception because, in fact, it can be taken up to five days after unprotected sex, by which time fertilization has occurred. To interfere with the cycle at this point is to cause a direct abortion.

I also oppose morning-after contraception as a parent. This recommendation from the physician’s group represents another attack on parental rights. A doctor who sees a teen as infrequently as once a year has no business, and no right, to insert himself or herself into a discussion about values and morality. That’s the job of a parent.

Think about the things we warn our kids about:  Smoking, drinking, experimenting with drugs. The accepted wisdom in combating these things is that we must talk to our teens, often. Hundreds of web sites and several ad campaigns have been built to promote the idea that parents are the best defense. Drugfree.org used to have a campaign called “Parents: The Anti-Drug.” Remember that?

So why, when it comes to teenage sexuality, should we asked to abdicate our responsibilities? And why should we allow doctors to second-guess us? If we have made it clear to our teenagers that sex is something sacred and meant to be enjoyed by two people who have made a lifelong commitment to each other through marriage, we shouldn’t accept the interference of a physician – however well-meaning – who tells our teens that “accidents happen” and here’s a way out.

Morality aside, morning after contraception is a powerful drug that no one should be encouraging teenagers to use.  Here’s what the well-respected Mayo Clinic has to say about it:

The morning-after pill isn’t appropriate for everyone. Tell your health care provider if:

  • You’re allergic to any component of the morning-after pill
  • You’re taking certain medications that may decrease the effectiveness of the morning-after pill, such as barbiturates or St. John’s wort
  • You’re breast-feeding (Plan B One-Step and Next Choice can be used during breast-feeding, but Ella isn’t recommended)

In addition, make sure you’re not pregnant before using Ella. The effects of Ella on a developing baby are unknown. However, if you’re already pregnant when you take Plan B One-Step or Next Choice, the treatment will simply be ineffective and won’t harm the developing baby.

Side effects of the morning-after pill typically last only a few days and may include:

  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Dizziness
  • Fatigue
  • Headache
  • Breast tenderness
  • Bleeding between periods or heavier menstrual bleeding
  • Lower abdominal pain or cramps
  • Diarrhea

As parents, as pro-lifers, as people of conscience, we cannot allow this recommendation by a group of doctors to become the law of the land.

As Kathryn Jean Lopez wrote in the National Review Online:

“Could we actually take a few steps back together here? Toward something healthier than a wholesale surrender of innocence, medical knowledge, and common sense? Could we ask for a cultural second opinion? It will require a little critical perseverance in the face of attractive, distracting rhetoric about health and freedom. But, ‘for the children,’ can we afford anything less?”

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