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Reason Is the Enemy of the Euthanasia Movement

  Facebook can be useful. Browsing through its weekly birthday update, I learned that Nick Tonti-Filippini, a bioethicist who serves on various Australian government committees and teaches at a Catholic institute in Melbourne, turns 55 today. Some of those years must have gone slowly for him, as he is chronically ill. Fortunately, he has the [...]

Misleading Research on Teen Sex

  “Young people are having sex for the first time at younger and younger ages.” “The average age at which American (British, Swedish, Australian…) adolescents begin sexual activity is 15 (16, 17…).” “HIV/AIDS education needs to take place at correspondingly young ages.” How many times do we read statements like this in news stories and studies? And how [...]

The Disappearing Russian Family

  Is there any nation as contrary in its demographics as Russia? While the world’s population police obsess about the ongoing “explosion” of the human species, Russia is on a depopulation slide and in danger of imploding. Again, while the world’s conscience is stirred by Asia’s 163 million missing females, Russia has a gender deficit [...]

Recycling Euthanasia Organs in Belgium

If you have an organ transplant in Belgium, there is a small chance that you will owe your life to someone else’s death by euthanasia. The complex job of matching donors and recipients in Belgium -- where euthanasia has been legal since 2002 -- is handled by an organisation called Eurotransplant. In 2008, in a [...]

A Talk in Tehran

How should academics comport themselves when visiting a dictatorship? More specifically, what should they do and not do when presenting a paper at an academic conference hosted by a government that denies academic and other freedoms to its own population? These were the questions that accompanied me to Tehran in July 2010 as I prepared [...]

Protect Animals, but Don’t Forget about People

  The Australian government has halted all exports of live animals to Indonesia. This means that Indonesian abattoirs will have to find other sources of beef and Australian Aborigines will have to find other jobs. The ban was a hasty response to images of appalling brutality in a few Indonesian abattoirs. Animal welfare activists and [...]

The Leaders We Deserve

  Nobody is perfect. Anybody can be weak when the opportunity presents itself. Even habitual offenders against prevailing mores can be treated with indulgence; after all, they are only human and besides, they happen to be amusing or admirable in other ways, or they have a difficult background to contend with, or... Some people feel [...]

Gender Confusion in One Easy Step

  With same-sex marriage, we saw the advent of arguments for “genderless parenting” – the idea that all a child needs is love and it’s irrelevant whether the loving persons are male or female. Now we have “genderless kids.” Kathy Witterick and David Stocker, the parents of Jazz (5), Kio (2) and three-month-old Baby Storm [...]

Why Is the Federal Government Disciplining Frat Boys?

  Last October a group of Yale freshmen pledging a fraternity made jackasses of themselves by marching around the campus chanting a vulgar slur against women. Complaints poured in and the university took action. Several fraternity members were disciplined and Yale banned the offending fraternity from all campus activities for five years, saying “the actions were [...]

Africa Needs Population Growth, Not Birth Control

  The United Nations recently published its two-yearly update of world population projections. These suggest that Nigeria could rise to 725 million people by 2100. Western media are shrilly calling for Nigeria to put a check on her population growth. No way, sorry. We Nigerians are rejoicing. Africans love children. First for financial security. In the past [...]

How Not to Solve Poverty

  And was Jerusalem builded here Among those dark satanic mills? … I will not cease from mental fight, Nor shall my sword sleep in my hand, Till we have built Jerusalem In England's green and pleasant land. (“Jerusalem”, by William Blake) Last month marked the 100th anniversary of the most deadly industrial accident in American [...]

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