The UN Funding Issue
The Censorship Continues (Sep 98)
On 24 Sep 98, The Boston Globe published the following editorial:
The UN as hostage...
As pressure mounts on the United States to pay its $1.5 billion in back dues to the United Nations or lose its vote in the General Assembly, congressional opponents of the UN are trying to shift the blame to President Clinton. But Clinton is right to threaten a veto of a proposed $926 million UN bailout package if it includes restrictions on family planning activities overseas. Far from the resent assertion of Jesse Helms, chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, that the restrictive language is merely a symbolic sop to the antiabortion lobby, the bill would do real harm to poor women in developing countries.
But the UN bailout package and this year's foreign aid bill contain so-called "gag rules" that would harm free speech as well as women's health in countries struggling with antiquated reproductive health laws. It is worth remembering that US funds are already banned for abortion services abroad. Helms and company would take that ban one step further, preventing nongovernmental organizations like Planned Parenthood from using their own money to lobby for changes in a foreign country's laws.
In Mexico, this would mean that the grass-roots group GIRE-the Spanish acronym for Information Group on Reproductive Choice-would be silenced in its efforts to change laws that mandate jail terms of up to five years for women who resort to abortions. Unsafe and illegal abortions are the third-ranking cause of maternal fatalities in Mexico, accounting for 1,500 deaths a year.
Back in the United States, Congress and the public seem to be reading off different scripts. In a poll of 1,005 Americans by Wirthlin Worldwide last month, fully 80 percent rejected linking UN payment to restrictions on abortion or family-planning. By a ration of 3 to 1, those surveyed supported paying the UN's back dues. It is single-minded abortion opponents attempting to take the gag rule onto all manner of crucial legislation who are making the unreasonable demands.
As I have pointed out in my earlier articles, I don't necessarily believe that abortions should be legal, but I do believe that it's a valid topic for public discussion and decision-making regarding the laws that should be created or applied regarding abortions, and I also believe that abortions rates would be substantially lower than they presently are if our religious leaders were in fact teaching the gospel of the Kingdom of God as taught by Jesus Christ. The 1,500 deaths reported in the above editorial probably respresents a small fraction of the number of abortions actually being performed in Mexico each year. Simply "passing a law" to prohibit abortions tends to hide the problem rather solve it. Mexico's religious leaders should be asking themselves, "Why have so many women chosen not only to break the law but to risk their own lives in oder to have an abortion?"
I pretty much agreed with the above editorial except for its omission of one glaring factor involved in this UN funding issue. So I responded with the following email to firstname.lastname@example.org:
So once again, payment of our United Nations dues is being scuttled by Congressional "pro-lifers." In Africa alone, the efforts of America's so-called "pro-life" religious leaders and politicians to financially cripple the peacekeeping capabilities of the United Nations have contributed significantly to creating an environment of anarchy there that has cost the lives of MILLIONS of men, women, and children since 1993. As Jesus Christ taught, we will "know them by their fruits".
As usual, The Boston Globe didn't publish this observation regarding the bloody consequences of the efforts of America's "Christian Right" to promote international anarchy (that is in fact what they have been promoting). Thousands of trees were cut down to provide the paper they used to discuss and report on President Clinton's sex life, but issues like this one which will determine the difference between life and death of millions of people per year (literally) get CENSORED!
As I have pointed out in my earlier articles on this web site, it's not just The Boston Globe that has been engaging in such practices, it's a nation-wide phenomenon among America's so-called "free press." Since news agencies make no claims about representing God, theoretically at least, they are pretty much free to publish or censor whatever they want to. However, now that most of our news agencies are owned by a relative small number of large corporations, there is mounting evidence that their freedom to publish what they want to is becoming more restricted (for "economic reasons"). So they CANNOT be relied upon to take God's commandment to "love your neighbor as yourself" seriously, especially if they perceive that there are "economic reasons" why they shouldn't.
Can our religious leaders be relied upon to take God's commandment to love your neighbor as yourself seriously? Not yet! Consider the following quotation from Jesus Christ in Matthew 25:31-46 (NKJ)
"When the Son of Man comes in His glory, and all the holy angels with Him, then He will sit on the throne of His glory. All the nations will be gathered before Him, and He will separate them one from another, as a shepherd divides his sheep from the goats. And He will set the sheep on His right hand, but the goats on the left. Then the King will say to those on His right hand, 'Come, you blessed of My Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world: for I was hungry and you gave Me food; I was thirsty and you gave Me drink; I was a stranger and you took Me in; I was naked and you clothed Me; I was sick and you visited Me; I was in prison and you came to Me.' Then the righteous will answer Him, saying, 'Lord, when did we see You hungry and feed You, or thirsty and give You drink? When did we see You a stranger and take You in, or naked and clothe You? Or when did we see You sick, or in prison, and come to You?' And the King will answer and say to them, 'Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these My brethren, you did it to Me.' Then He will also say to those on the left hand, 'Depart from Me, you cursed, into the everlasting fire prepared for the devil and his angels: for I was hungry and you gave Me no food; I was thirsty and you gave Me no drink; I was a stranger and you did not take Me in, naked and you did not clothe Me, sick and in prison and you did not visit Me.' Then they also will answer Him, saying, 'Lord, when did we see You hungry or thirsty or a stranger or naked or sick or in prison, and did not minister to You?' Then He will answer them, saying, 'Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did not do it to one of the least of these, you did not do it to Me.' And these will go away into everlasting punishment, but the righteous into eternal life."
How much clearer can Jesus make it? Despite what many of our nation's "TV evangelists" tend to imply, you CANNOT "love Jesus" or "love God" without ALSO loving your neighbor as yourself. And as you can see above, Jesus placed NO restrictions whatsoever on his definition of neighbor! The following two commandments are in effect two human ways of viewing the same commandment to follow God!
Matt 22:37-40 (NKJ)
"You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind. This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself. On these two commandments hang all the Law and the Prophets."
This what's really being censored, and the price which mankind has been paying for such censorship practices has been SUBSTANTIAL! Those millions of men, women, and children who are being killed each year by our beloved "national sovereignty system" are our NEIGHBORS!
one grain of salt
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Last modified on Friday, May 03, 2002