I have long been concerned with the environment and have attempted to live in a reasonable ecologically conservative fashion for over twenty years now-since well before environmental issues became a chic cause. Granted, back then, we did not know about acid rain, the greenhouse effect, holes in the ozone layer, chlorofluorocarbons , vanishing tropical rain forests, and overflowing garbage dumps. Back then, recycling, saving energy, gardening organically and eating whole foods just seemed common sense.
It seems only logical that pro-life people would be sensitive to environmental concerns: we encourage life and a polluted world is hostile to life. I have watched the “green” movement grow in Europe and wondered where Greens stand on abortion. I am
disappointed – but not surprised-to find that their philosophy completely opposes ours.
In Scotland, a Green spokeswoman told A.S. Fraser, editor of the small Catholic magazine, Apropos, that the Party supports equality of opportunity and equality before the law. Sounds wonderful! But this “equality” includes lowering to 16 years of age of consent for homosexuals and respecting “a woman’s right to choose” abortion. They oppose individual property rights when it comes to supporting the family, they will “campaign for a society in which both men and women can combine child care with a full and fulfilling life outside the home.”
“Choice,” however, confines rather than liberates: they oppose a woman choosing to have a child. People, it seems, equal pollution in their eyes. Their manifesto states that population must be reduced to achieve a sustainable economy through such reduction “need not involve repression” (As Mr. Fraser points out, “need not does not completely rule out repression if subtle hints fail to encourage childlessness). The Greens urge “accurate information about population, as well as both education about and access to “safe and pleasant birth control methods” to reduce population.
Accurate information? The Green manifesto states that Europe is the most densely populated continent in the world but fails to aid that in many Western European countries the birth rate has fallen below the replacement level. France for example, is projected to become a Muslim country in 50 years or so because the Muslim immigrants are the only people having large families.
But as pro-lifers know, people are not enemies of the environment (though some environmentalists are enemies of the people.) People are not just mouths needing food; they help produce food and they can find solutions to environmental problems.
Green politics fit very nicely into the “one world government” ideology. In this view, that the world has become a global commune and national boundaries, cultural and religious differences and so are not appropriate to high-tech societies. It would be comforting to believe that the “Commune-ist” Green phenomenon would stay confined to Europe. But it cannot. Environmental problems know no boundaries: we cannot rid our lakes of aid rain without the co-operation of the United States. Reversing the green house effect means to preserve the tropical rain-forests in Brazil.
The lesson for us? While supporting environmental clean-up campaigns, pro-lifers must beware of the not-so-hidden agenda behind many of the organizations involved.
The Green Party in Britain actively supports population control measures and makes it quite clear that the Catholic Church is one group to be attacked. A recent book, reports Mrs. Fraser, states the many reforms that a Green government would initiate; “payments for periods of non-pregnancy and non-birth (a kind of no-claims bonus); tax benefits for families with fewer than two children; sterilization bonuses; withdrawal of maternity and similar benefits after a second child; larger pensions for people with fewer than two children; free, easily available family planning; more funds for research into means of
contraception, especially for men; an end to infertility research and treatment; a more realistic approach to abortion, the banning of surrogate motherhood and similar practices…”
With regard to foreign aid, the Greens say, “the cruel truth is that help given to regimes opposed to population policies is counter productive and should cease. They are true enemies of life and do not merit support. So too are those religions which do not actively support do not actively support birth control. Green governments would reluctantly have to challenge head on such damaging beliefs. To do otherwise would merely exacerbate the problem.”
The people-as-pollution approach has already crossed the Atlantic. American Life Lobby reports that some U.S. environmental groups have joined a pro-abortion coalition to pressure the government to resume giving to the U.N. Fund for Population Activities, which actively supports China’s compulsory abortion programme and funds clinical trials of RU 486. (Canada continues to give money to this U.N. Fund). The groups include the National Wildlife Federation, Friends of the Earth, Sierra Club and the National Audubon Society.
It seems to me that pro-lifers should be very cautious in donating to environmental organizations – which does not mean we should ignore the issues. We can continue to recycle newspapers and bottles and cans, decline to buy aerosols with CFCs, use organic gardening methods, insulate our houses, turn down the thermostat and so on. Even small gestures are better than joining with groups who show such contempt for life.