Friday, May 20, 2011

Spirit & Life - Sweden Attacks Freedom of Conscience, Again

Spirit & Life 

Human Life International e-Column
Volume 06, Number 21 | Friday, May 20, 2011

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This week's column is by Joseph Meaney, HLI's  Director of International Coordination 

Spirit & Life
is the weekly e-column of
Human Life International.

For Media Inquiries: Stephen Phelan 540-622-5270

Sweden Attacks Freedom of Conscience, Again



Gamla Uppsala, a site of religious and politic...

Early Sweden. Image via Wikipedia

It is shocking when one first encounters the rank hypocrisy of the bastions of liberalism. The phrase "political correctness" became popular after the censorship and persecution experienced by non-liberals became known as a then-surprising phenomenon, especially in academia. But what we are seeing now goes beyond mere "PC" browbeating and condescension.


The official mantras of "tolerance" and "multiculturalism" are a sham. It would be more truthful for liberals to say "we tolerate the craziest of views and creeds, but not the core values of the majority of Christians and Jews". Actually, anyone who acknowledges objective truth and morality is likely to run afoul of the "thought police" and be subjected to intimidation, vilification or worse if they have the misfortune to be where liberals make the rules or laws.


Liberal Sweden has just given a textbook example of disregard for the human rights of those with whom they disagree. Their parliament passed a resolution with a crushing majority, 271 to 20, instructing the Swedish members of the Council of Europe to do everything in their power to strip the right to conscientious objection from health care personnel throughout the European Union.


This has already been done in Sweden. There, medical staff can be coerced into performing abortions or other immoral procedures without any recourse except abandonment of their profession. What upset the Swedish government so much was an excellent, if common sense, Council of Europe resolution in October 2010 that upheld the right to conscientious objection for both individuals and institutions in the health care arena. 


Msgr. Michel Schooyans wrote an aptly titled book, The Totalitarian Trends of Liberalism. He and others have pointed out how intolerance of traditional values is the mark of liberalism. A cozy relationship with the dominant media institutions to propagate their ideas is a given for them, but the goal of liberalism is to make it illegal to disagree with their beliefs.


A mighty step in this process comes when the coercive power of the state is used to declare certain thoughts, words or actions "hate crimes". After all, few liberals really believe in such bedrock democratic notions as equal rights for all or freedom of speech. They believe the penal system should give special rights and protection to certain groups and persecute others.


In one famous case, Swedish Protestant Pastor Ake Green was sentenced to jail time under a "hate crimes" law after he preached a sermon critical of homosexuality. His defense, that he was merely quoting from the Bible and traditional Christian teaching, was rejected.


Sadly, protection for all innocent human life is not politically correct. Those of us who are pro-life must work to defend the freedom of conscience for medical workers who are constantly being pressured to cooperate with the culture of death. Our liberal "pro-choice" opponents are generally quite happy to back attempts by medical schools to deny students who want to specialize in Obstetrics and Gynecology the choice of not performing abortions. Pharmacists generally get even less consideration if they stand up and refuse to fill prescriptions for abortifacient drugs.


HLI is proud to strongly defend the rights of pro-life health care workers. We cannot afford to allow liberals around the world to lead us down the Swedish path.


Bernard NathansonDr. Bernard Nathanson: "Confessions of an Ex-Abortionist"  

On compact disc, hear the long-awaited impromptu speech given by the late, great champion of life in which he describes his conversion from being an abortionist and co-founder of NARAL, to being a leading defender of the unborn, a conversion which ultimately led to his entering the Catholic Church.   This famous talk was given at the 1994 HLI World Conference in Irvine, CA.  Purchase the CD here...   

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