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The Trump administration has officially backed legislation that will ban abortions after twenty weeks. A statement from the White House read:
“The bill, if enacted into law, would help to facilitate the culture of life to which our Nation aspires. Additionally, the bill would promote a science-based approach to unborn life, as recent advancements have revealed that the physical structures necessary to experience pain are developed within 20 weeks of fertilization”
The bill, which is labelled the ‘Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act‘, is being sponsored by Republican Congressman from Arizona, Trent Franks. Under the bill, anyone who performs or attempts to perform an abortion on a fetus twenty-weeks or older will face criminal penalties, including a fine or a term of imprisonment of up to five years. Naturally, exceptions have been made which will allow women to utilise the medical procedure after the deadline if her life is in danger or if she is a victim of rape or incest.
As if on cue, the bill has faced a strong backlash from morally repugnant pro-choice groups, who have slammed it as ‘cruel’ and ‘unconstitutional’ (because America’s founding fathers totally believed in the right to murder unborn babies). Heather Boonstra of The Hill condemned it as an attempt to “politicise women’s health, limit access to abortion care and stigmatise people who need later abortions” (the accusation of ‘politicising’ women in any way is a little rich coming from the left). Similarly, Planned Parenthood tweeted: “20 week abortion bans are: unpopular, unconstitutional, part of the agenda to ban ALL abortion.”
This is our weekly theological article.
It is a common complaint of the media that criminals are not given an appropriately severe punishment. An article in The Express, SNP Plot to Scrap Short Jail Sentences Could See Thousands of Criminals Avoid Prison, argues that plans to introduce a “presumption against” sending people to prison will mean that thousands of people convicted of serious crimes will avoid prison. In another article, this time from the Herald Sun, prosecutors in Australia complained that the sentences criminals received were not in line with community standards.
Of course, this represents the common misconception, perpetuated by the media, that the judiciary exists to serve the standards of the community. It does not. Rather, the Justice System exists independently of both public opinion and politics. It bases its decisions on equality before the law and justice for all.
Much of the media’s rhetoric is designed to feed off of our very human desire for revenge based justice. When we read about a rape or child murder in our daily newspapers, often our first reaction is to wish all kinds of cruel and inhumane punishments to be exacted on the criminal guilty of those crimes. Our indignation turns us into barbarians, not civilised people.
In his encyclical, Dives in Misericordia, Pope John Paul II warns of how justice can quickly devolve into cruelty and hatred when it is not tempered by mercy:
“It would be difficult not to notice that very often programmes which start from the idea of justice and which ought to assist its fulfilment among individuals, groups and human societies, in practice suffer from distortions. Although they continue to appeal to the idea of justice, nevertheless experience shows that other negative forces have gained the upper hand over justice, such as spite, hatred and even cruelty.”
God tempers His divine justice with mercy. If He were to judge us purely on our thoughts and deeds we would surely be condemned to hell. But in his mercy and love for us, He allowed his only Son to suffer and die on the Cross so we may be freed from the shackles of sin and death.
St. Thomas Aquinas wrote, “mercy without justice is the mother of dissolution; justice without mercy is cruelty.” It is precisely this idea, that justice ought to be tempered by mercy, that should drive the way we treat those who have harmed us. As Isabella tells Antonio in Measure for Measure: “it is excellent to have a giant’s strength, but tyrannous to use the strength of a giant.” We should never forget that the person who has wronged us is a human being who is as loved by God and as deserving of His forgiveness as we are.
A pro-ISIS media outlet has warned Spanish unbelievers that terror cells remained in the country and that jihad “has not been fought and gone.”
US Secretary of State, Rex Tillerson, has put Pakistan “on notice“, informing them they will lose their status as an American ally if they don’t stop harbouring terrorists. Tillerson told reporters at the State Department:
“We are going to be engaging with them in a very serious and thorough way as to our expectations and the conditions that go with that.”
Tillerson also didn’t rule out US air strikes on the nation:
“We are going to attack terrorists wherever they live. And we have put people on notice that if you are harbouring or providing safe haven to terrorists, be warned, be forewarned.”
Pay Pal has prevented Jihad Watch director, Robert Spencer (not to be confused with the white nationalist Richard Spencer) from accepting online donations through their service. The organisation has been deemed a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center due to its “extreme hostility towards Muslims.” Ironic considering Islamic extremists have been known to murder those who don’t agree with their religious and political views, persecute non-Muslims who fall under their control, revile non-believers, pillage, and engage in mass rape and sexual slavery.
According to a Breitbart report today, a Muslim gang has been convicted of grooming women, aged between thirteen and twenty-five, for human sex trafficking. The gang, which was convicted over two years and four trials, included seventeen men of Pakistani, Indian, Iraqi, Iranian, and Turkish descent.
The victims were either drugged and raped while unconscious, or intimidated into sex through physical and emotional abuse. One thirteen-year-old girl recalled being pack raped in sex parties held by the groomers.
Among those arrested were Badrul Hussain, thirty-seven, who was found guilty of offences pertaining to drugs, Habibur Rahim, thirty-four, who was found guilty of rape and human trafficking offences, and Carolann Gallon, a twenty-two-year-old white woman, who lured young women for the groomers.
Rahim reportedly told a female ticket inspector that white women were “good for only one thing – for people like me to f*** and use as trash.” Rahim even accused his victims of being liars and the police of being racists in an attempt to avoid conviction.
The arrests and conviction have come as a part of Operation Sanctuary: the UK’s largest investigation into grooming gangs since Rochdale and Rotherham. The investigation found that these gangs consist mainly of men of Pakistani and Bangladeshi origin who would traffic, drug, and rape vulnerable white women.
According to the National Crime Association, slavery is becoming an increasingly more prevalent issue in the UK.