Great Hope and Strength
For the Family in Nigeria
(Editor’s Note: Sharon’s husband, Greg, who serves as FWI’s Legal Advisor, is the author of this message.)
Dear Supporter of the Family,
Sharon and I returned last week from Nigeria where Sharon gave the keynote address at the Nigerian World Congress of Families. The event, organized by the Foundation for African Culture and Heritage and entitled “Challenges in Upholding the Rights of Women and Children,” was also sponsored by the government of Nigeria and the Nigerian Bar Association.
Many high level government officials in attendance – including the wives of the Vice President of Nigeria and Deputy Senate President, the Minister of Women’s Affairs and the Solicitor General – showed deep interest in learning how to protect women, children and the family.
We heard from a number of passionate lawyers and social workers who lead various local organizations dedicated to the family. Many of them described the plight of women and children in Nigeria, and the need to curb child marriage, child abuse, abortion and prostitution.
Sharon’s stirring speech highlighted the need to preserve Nigeria’s values and culture in light of the advancement of fictitious sexual rights at the United Nations. She explained how this agenda has contributed to the destruction of religious and cultural values, the breakdown of the institution of the family, the denigration of the role of mothers, and the loss of innocence among children.
Several other speakers also were outspoken on the need to avoid importing international policies and norms that undermine the traditional family. To our surprise, they even quoted from some of Family Watch’s policy briefs found on our Web site.
In her speech Sharon described the situation with the UN as the proverbial “cockroach in the ice cream” — and encouraged Nigerians to pick out and push back hard against the controversial elements and the cultural imperialism of the UN and many developed nations. She then quoted from the inspiring speech of the Nigerian delegate to the UN, Mr. Ositadinma Anaedu, made last month on behalf of the African Group (minus South Africa). Click here to read an excerpt of his passionate speech.
The Nigerians clapped and cheered as Ositadinma Anaedu’s statement was read, and afterward the government leaders in attendance asked for copies of Sharon’s speech. We also provided a copy of Sharon’s book, Stand for the Family, to the wife of Nigeria’s Vice President, the Minster of Children and Family Affairs, and the President of the Senate to help educate them more on international developments.
A few who previously held only positive views of the UN and who had favored fully domesticating the UN CEDAW treaty in Nigeria commented that their views had changed because of the conference. Also, many pro-family advocates wanted to organize themselves and leverage their resources to be more impactful, and a number have decided to form a Family Watch committee in Nigeria.
Sharon and I also traveled to Aba, Nigeria to give a parenting workshop and were interviewed on a TV show, "Good Morning Aba," watched by several million people.
We were overwhelmed by the sincere desire of all of the Nigerian people we met to strengthen their families and to become better parents. We thoroughly enjoyed teaching the parenting classes because those who came—men and women of all ages—were hungry for even the most basic information. Here is one response we received from a young man after the workshop we gave in Aba:
I cannot thank you and your wife enough for such an inspiring talk on the family which i sometimes get scared of getting into due to the number of divorce, and wrong attitudes of young people and families of our age . . . i also aspire to raise a good family and be a good father to my children and a good and loving husband to my wife when i find her. You are my mentors keep it up and please do keep in touch and see me as your young family friend.
Marriage and family are greatly treasured by all of the Nigerians we met, in fact in all our travels we have never met a people more passionate about safeguarding the family.
As the most populous and one of the wealthiest African counties, Nigeria can serve as a strong role model for other governments in the region to follow on how to hold on to their family values despite intense international pressure. In fact, several days after the conference, the head of the Anglican Church called upon the Nigerian government to withdraw from the United Nations because of its push to further the cause of homosexuality.
FWI Legal Advisor
News Items of Interest
Russian President Signs Abortion Law. The law makes it illegal to tout abortion as a safe medical procedure and requires abortion providers to devote 10 percent of their advertisements to detail the dangers of the procedure to women. The law also allows women who do not want to keep their infants to leave them at adoption centers. Read more here.
U.S. FDA Confirms Abortion Drug Kills Women. A report released by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration confirms that in the United States 14 women have died and several thousand have experienced an “adverse event” after taking the abortion drug RU-486. There were five additional deaths of women in foreign countries. Read more here.
Study Finds Women Having Abortions Increase Future Premature Births. Women who experience abortions are 33 percent more likely to deliver a pre-term infant than those who have never had an abortion. They are also 44 percent more likely to deliver an extremely premature infant—before 34 weeks. Read more here.
Attempt to Redefine Human Life in Mexico. Liberal and socialist party members are proposing to redefine an embryo or zygote as a “fertilized ovum.” This would allow the commercialization—the mass production and destruction of human embryos—without legal consequences. Read more here.
Homosexual History Lessons Now Law in California. Governor Jerry Brown signed the controversial bill that will require public schools in California to teach students about the contributions of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender individuals. Textbooks are required to include the information, but the budget crisis in California means no new textbooks can be purchased until 2015. The governor called the legislation “historic.” Read more here. The day after the governor signed the bill a family advocacy group, Capitol Resource Institute, began the process for a statewide vote to overturn the bill. Read more here.
Ohio Court Rules Lesbian Partner Has No Right to Child Custody. The Ohio Supreme Court ruled in the case between two lesbians who were formerly in a relationship. One woman was the biological parent. The other woman, not a biological parent, sued for custody of the child when the relationship ended. Read more here.
Obama States His Administration is Most Pro-Homosexual in History. At a recent event at the White House marking “Pride Month,” President Obama told homosexual activists that under his direction, more has been accomplished in his two-and-a-half years in office for homosexual rights than during the administrations of the previous 43 presidents. He specifically mentioned the repeal of Don’t Ask/Don’t Tell and the refusal of his administration to defend DOMA in court. Obama has stated that he does not support same-sex marriage. Read more here.
U.S. Education Secretary Promoting Homosexual Clubs on School Campuses. In a letter to all school districts in the United States, Education Secretary Arne Duncan advised school district officials regarding the establishment of Gay-Straight Alliance clubs for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender students. The letter cited statistics on the harassment and bullying of LGBT students from a 2009 survey done by the Gay Lesbian and Straight Education Network (GLSEN). Read more here.
Repeal of Don’t Ask/Don’t Tell Certified. The final requirement for repeal of the U.S. military’s “Don’t Ask/Don’t Tell” policy was completed when President Obama, incoming Defense Secretary Leon Panetta, and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs Admiral Mullen all certified that repeal would not adversely affect military readiness. The repeal will be fully implemented on September 20th. Read more here.
Chile to Introduce Civil Union Legislation. The bill would legally recognize unions between same-sex couples who have lived together for more than one year. Read more here.
House Votes to Block Same-Sex Weddings on Military Bases. The U.S. House of Representatives voted 236-184 to prohibit military chaplains from performing same-sex marriages on military bases regardless of state law. The measure was attached to the defense spending bill. Read more here.
Senate Holds Hearings on DOMA Repeal. The full Senate Judiciary Committee held hearings on S. 598, the “Respect for Marriage Act,” that would repeal the federal Defense of Marriage Act. Only 27 senators have sponsored the legislation. Read more here. Press secretary Jay Carney announced that President Barack Obama is in favor of the legislative repeal of DOMA. Read more here.
Australian Senate Rejects Same-Sex Marriage Motion. A motion by the Green Party that called on the federal government to support same-sex marriage was voted down 31 to 9. The motion pointed to same-sex marriage legislation in the U.S. and other countries claiming that Australia is one of the few democratic nations that has not legalized it. Read more here.
Maine Same-Sex Marriage Supporters Plan Referendum. Hoping to build on the momentum from the legalization of same-sex marriage in New York, homosexual activists in Maine are filing paperwork with election officials to begin the process of gathering signatures to put the measure on the November 2012 ballot. Voters in the state overturned a same-sex marriage law in 2009. Read more here.
U.S. Changes Position on Same-Sex Bankruptcies. The U.S. Justice Department is no longer opposed to joint bankruptcy petitions filed by same-sex married couples. Previously, the department had intervened to stop these cases, but the Obama administration announced in February it would no longer defend the constitutionality of the 1996 Defense of Marriage Act. Read more here.
Same-Sex Divorces Rise in UK. Last year 509 civil partnerships were dissolved in the UK, an increase of 44 percent since 2009. Almost 50,000 same-sex couples have formalized relationships since civil partnerships were legalized in December 2005. Read more here.
News Items of General Interest
Swedish Government to Increase Sex Education in Schools. The minister for integration and equality stated that the $1.5 million investment to expand sex ed to history, social studies and religion classes instead of only biology classes, will allow teachers to “inspire dialogue and reflection.” It is felt that the move will allow issues regarding gender and sexuality to be discussed within the framework of other subjects. Read more here.
STD “Superbug” Could be Global Health Threat. The discovery of a new gonorrhea strain in Japan is raising concern among health officials worldwide. The new strain is resistant to the antibiotics that are typically used to treat gonorrhea. Gonorrhea is one of the most common STDs in the world, and in the U.S. 700,000 people contract the disease each year. Read more here.
Study Finds Men Who Buy Sex Commit More Crimes. The study by the nonprofit group Prostitution Research and Education found that men who pay for sex are more likely than men who do not pay for sex to commit crimes including violent crimes against women and crimes related to substance abuse, assault and weapons. The study also found that men who pay for sex seem to share certain attitudes and behavioral tendencies not present in other men. Read more here.
STD Rates on the Rise in Scotland. Cases of sexually transmitted infections in Scotland have tripled in the last 10 years. Increases were recorded in genital herpes, Chlamydia, gonorrhea, syphilis and HIV between 1999 and 2009. Read more here.
UN Aid Agencies Amass Large Amounts of Cash. According to a report prepared for the government of Norway, by the end of 2009 four of the United Nations largest development agencies had amassed at least $12.2 billion in unspent cash. The U.N. Development Program (UNDP), World Food Program (WFP), UNICEF, and the U.N. Population Program (UNFPA) have built up substantial reserves. This seems to indicate that donor funding is not being used for development purposes. Read more here.
Have We Gone MAD?
Bizarre, real-life examples that make us wonder. . . Have We Gone MAD?
by Seymour D. Kaye
Meet Kyle Richards.
Now, Kyle’s not the brightest crayon in the box for several reasons.
One. He is in jail for robbing a bank. Never a good idea.
Two. Kyle was apprehended for robbing a bank when police followed a trail of money and snowy footprints from the scene of the crime to . . . his . . . apartment.
Starting to get the picture…?
Three. Kyle is suing the governor of Michigan, the state where he is incarcerated, on the grounds that depriving him of pornography while incarcerated is “inhumane and unconstitutional.”
Kyle’s lawsuit says the porn ban in state prisons reduces his standard of living and subjects him to “sexual and sensory deprivation.”
AND that the porn ban creates living conditions that are used as “a method of psychological warfare against prisoners in order to both destroy the morale of inmates and break the spirit of individuals.”
Did you catch that? No porn = no morale and broken spirits. Say WHAT?? Kyle’s not reading the same research on pornography that I am.
The truth is that some pornographic material within certain limits IS allowed in the jail, apparently just not Kyle’s preferred pornography.
Oh, and one more interesting tidbit… Kyle Richards has had at least three other complaints filed in federal court dismissed as frivolous.
Not much of a criminal mind. . .
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