Monday, 23 April 2012

Defend Marriage! Help C4M Reach Half a Million Signatures

I received the following text in an email from C4M. For more info, to sign-up or to help more - go to www.c4m.org.uk. Here it is in its entirety so all of us can push to get the signatures up to 500,000 asap.

As Catholics we have a special duty to defend a Sacrament of Holy Mother Church.

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Dear marriage supporter,
Next Monday (30 April) will mark ten weeks of the Coalition for Marriage campaign and the national petition for marriage. In that time, you and over 450,000 fellow marriage supporters have already signed the petition. That’s great, thank you for your support.
Let’s celebrate the ten-week milestone by pushing the petition past the half-a-million mark. Help us reach 500,000 by next week. We’re nearly there. Just an extra push from you would put us over.
That would send a clear message to the Government that the campaign is going from strength to strength. We are already one of the fastest growing national petitions in living memory. Let’s show the politicians that there’s more where that came from. Let’s show them that the nation’s affection for marriage is strong, deep and widespread.

Practical tips

Some of you may be sitting on paper petition sheets that you have yet to send in to our office. Perhaps you are waiting for the sheet to be entirely filled before posting it to us. We like your dedication! But send it in now – no matter how many signatures you’ve got. You can always collect more signatures on extra sheets later. You can get extra petition sheets by phoning 0207 403 7879 or by downloading a copy from our website.
Some of you may not have yet downloaded our paper petition sheets. These are for your friends who can’t sign the petition online. Some of our supporters have taken the petition door-to-door to their neighbours, some have asked friends at work to sign it, some have asked their families. Download the sheet, or get copies by telephoning 0207 403 7879. Get people signed up and post the sheet back to us to the address on the sheet by Monday 30 April – or very soon afterwards.
Post the petition to Facebook. Just copy this link http://www.c4m.org.uk into your status update – and add some words to encourage people to push the petition over the 500,000 mark. Share the petition on Twitter also. If you’ve already done this, think about doing it again. We all need gentle reminders from time to time.
Perhaps you want some talking points before you speak to others about the subject. Download our briefing, that will help you to think about the issues and talk to people about why marriage is part of the common good and should not be redefined.
Together, we can get the petition over 500,000 by Monday 30 April. After that, the petition will still be there, growing bigger every day. But let’s make our ten-week milestone extra special by hitting half-a-million supporters!

Wednesday, 18 April 2012

SPUC's Life Chains: Take a Stand for the Unborn

I was chuffed to be reminded c/o John Smeaton's excellent blog that SPUC's Life Chains are coming back to the streets, mostly on the 28th of April. More details here.

There's one near us and I am hoping that there'll be no last minute family drama (car dying, child breaking bone etc.) that stops at least a few of us attending!

Have a look and see if there's one near you. If there is ask your Parish Priest to publicise it. Let's make this a year when more and more Catholics (and men of good will) make a stand for the butchered innocents.

And look! Someone's taken a folding chair... so there's no excuse, not even for those of us who like pork pies a little too much (you can even take one or two in a pocket!)

Sunday, 15 April 2012

BBC Thinks Murder is the Answer to Poverty

From Love Undefiled Blog
I just watched a BBC News 24 Programme. It was actually a propaganda piece. It was about the Philippines and was an attack on that country's Faith and its policy of not promoting contraception.

We were treated to all the clichés about women's rights, poverty, the "dark ages" etc.

It always strikes me as weird that liberals (such as the BBC) think that all the poor children we see playing, working etc. should have been killed. Is it a solution to kill children, rather than stop poverty?

That is like taking a machine gun into a council estate because you think the people there are unfairly treated by a system in which a minority have too many riches.
  • We call a man who puts puppies in a sack with a brick and throws them into the canal a monster.
  • We call a man who wants the mass murder of innocent babies on the grounds of poverty a "progressive."
As the Americans would say: 'go figure.'

It is a poverty to decide that a child must die so that you may live as you wish. ~ Blessed Mother Teresa

Wednesday, 4 April 2012

Good V Bad: Films and Parenting

"Torture Porn" - For Kids (or Anyone)?
There was a piece on the Victoria derbyshire Show on Radio 5 Live this morning about "reception class" children in infants school (ages circa 4 or 5 years old) playing violent video games (Grand Theft Auto and Call of Duty). These games tend to be rated 15 or 18 and do contain some extreme violence.

Without going into details of the where and when (or even the gender), I know of a child in a reception class who is so young/immature that he/she still wears a nappy. Yet this child regularly "effs and blinds" in class.

One cannot blame all the ills in society on bad parenting, but there is no doubt that bad, sloppy, lazy or similar parenting is to blame for a good proportion of what is wrong in society.

In recent days there has been a lot of discussion of violence in the media because of the 14 year old boy who killed his mother and set fire to her afterwards. He was 'hooked' on violence in films and on TV.

Now let me put my cards on the line. I enjoy films, and these include psychological thrillers, murder mysteries and similar. I also played with Action Man toys, toy soldiers and played 'British and Germans' in the playground when we (teeny lads) would pretend to have pistols or machine guns and run around shooting each other, dying in agony (imagine the theatricals!) only to be brought back to life if a comrade-in-arms got to you.

So what am I trying to say? Well, I think boys will always be boys (and some girls will always be tomboys), and playing 'war games' is as old as the hills; but I also think parents have a duty to teach their children right from wrong. A percentage may always choose the wrong things as they grow older; but if parents take an active role in promoting good values (anchored in the Ten Commandments, for example) then at least children have a fighting chance of not being quite so bad as they grow up.

We all of us know that working through school and in jobs (whether offices or factories) you bump along with some rum characters, and so very few us live in a bubble. Nor should we, unless we wish to be a hermit.

But we should at least give children the protection they deserve, and the values that can help them in life; even if they decide (of their own free will) to jettison those values when they are older.

It's akin to a wooden ship sinking. We could let it sink and hope for the best, knowing that some will cling to the flotsam and jetsam, or we can fling a load of life-saving 'rubber rings' in, knowing that it could help even more people survive. Giving children a decent upbringing, teaching them right from wrong, shielding them from horror films, porn and foul language, can't ensure they are perfect as adults, but it is a good start, and will lessen the odds of losing more further down the road.

I think that is why some Catholic writers I've read articles by, blame lax catechetics by the Church on the number of cradle Catholics who drift away from their Faith. Good foundations protect against subsidence later on.

As I supped my lunchtime cup of tea today I heard Jeremy Vine on the radio saying the murder by the 14-year-old was somehow linked to the Saw movies. Now I have never seen one of these movies, they just don't appeal to me at all. In some quarters (e.g. film critics) they are known as "torture porn" and Mr. Vine said that the theme of these movies was turned on its head because in them the bloke doing the torturing held all the power. At least in more traditional "horror" films the bad guys got their comeuppance and the good guys won. In many of them the good guys also happened to be Catholic priests or in some way sanctioned by the Catholic Church. So there was some sense of 'good v evil' and good winning.

As I said I have never (and hope never to) see a Saw movie, but the lines delineating good and evil seem blurred, to say the least. Besides which, surely even with the best will in the world and even with 'scarey' films that play the good v evil, Church v Satan, Priest v possession (etc.) themes, these are meant for grown-ups only!

I think the films The Rite and The Exorcism of Emily Rose are very good, and contain valid Catholic themes, and portray a battle of good versus evil that can take the complacent person and make them realise that just as there is a God, so there is an evil being called Satan ("who roams the world for the ruin of souls" to quote the Leo XIII prayer to St Michael).

But the idea of showing such films to children is a no-no, because they have some disturbing images, frightening sequences and suchlike.

The riots in London were blamed on bad parenting, which came as no real surprise to anyone with more than an ounce of intelligence. Liberals, atheists, 60s hippies and professional social workers may wish otherwise, but we need good parenting in this country (mums and dads!), and without that children miss out on the fundamentals, whether it is teaching your children that smashing shops up is wrong, that swearing is wrong, that watching or playing games that are for an older age group is wrong, just as much as eating nothing but crisps and sweets and drinking fizzy pop all day is wrong.

Those parents who allow their children to eat and drink rubbish all day cannot be surprised when their teeth rot or they get obese. Those who don't may still get 'cavities' or grow chubby and those who do may by sheer chance get through unscathed, but the battle to protect their teeth and health is nonetheless important and it is a parent's duty to step in, say "no" when necessary and put up with any strops and tantrums that happen along the way.

Similarly those parents who do not shield their children from foul language, porn, horror films etc. cannot be surprised when their children grow up to be obnoxious, nasty or foul.

It's going to be a battle against the odds anyway given the modern world, given the people in our schools, colleges, workplaces and in the streets. It's going to be a hard slog against the tide given the media, adverts in the streets, films, magazines etc.

But to surrender at the start and give children full access to bad materials and bad influences is not just sloppy and lazy parenting: it's evil parenting. And I would think that kind of parenting is now reaping the whirlwind it has sown.