By Paul Tuns

It was e. e. cummings who said that the world is not only queerer than we suppose, it is queerer than we can suppose. (He said it before the term queer was hijacked by homosexual activists.) Editing a pro-life newspaper I have come to expect the worst news and yet I am still surprised by what comes across my desk at times. And much of it is very queer (in the old sense – and, yes, in the new sense) indeed.

The latest news from England should not be surprising but it is. It shouldn’t be surprising because it has been said before and by no less a figure than the notorious philosopher Peter Singer. In essence, Singer says that nothing as trivial as passing through the birth canal should imbue a child with rights and therefore the right to an abortion extends past birth.

But as a wag once said, so silly is the idea that only a university professor could believe it. But what about two universities professors? Is that a trend that may makes its way to the rest of society?

Professor John Harris is a member of the British Medical Association’s ethics committee and he recently said during the course of a debate on sex-selection that “I don’t think infanticide is always unjustifiable. I don’t think it is plausible to think that there is any moral change that occurs during the journey down the birth canal.” He also said that infanticide is accepted in most countries and that it was for families to decide the fate of their child, noting in particular that babies born with disabilities are often not given proper medical care and left to die. There is an admirably honest consistency at the root of his statement: there is no moral difference between the pre-born and just born. However, instead of taking the logically moral position of granting the unborn the right to life, he seeks to deny this right to the born.

This is, one would guess, what cummings meant by queerer than we could suppose.

The United Nations Population Fund (with the acronym (UNFPA) that I do not quite understand – for what does the A stand?) and the Alan Guttmacher Institute, the research arm of Planned Parenthood, have published a report calling for “the prevention of unintended pregnancies.” The unholy alliance also called for developed countries to finance population control. This is no surprise because the UNFPA has made it their mission in life to depopulate the world by scaring the West into believing that there are too many people and depriving the developing world of its most precious resource: people.

What was a little surprising was the report’s claim that increased “sexual health provision” (read: free abortion and condoms) will lead to happier societies because countries could reduce expenditures on such budget items as education, health care and public services.

So, the UNFPA and the Guttmacher Institute believe that a happy society is a childless society because such societies can spend less on education and healthcare. As the situation in Europe clearly demonstrates, as populations stagnate and decline, the tax burden increases because smaller workforces are required to pay for the social services, healthcare and pensions of an older population that is not only growing but becoming proportionately larger.

Not only is abortion morally offensive, it is bad economics.

(To be fair, the UNFPA and their ilk never think that nice white Europe is over-populated; it’s Africa and Asia that have too many people. Contrary to the demands of various United Nations’ agencies and western feminists, what these regions need is not more abortion but more development.)

What is odd about this story is that the UNFPA thinks that eradicating people will eradicate poverty. Even if it were true, which it isn’t (economist Julian Simon said that the world’s greatest resource is people), this smacks of blaming the victims which, if I am not mistaken, the Enlightened always tell us not to do.

Lastly, a news item that proves literary critic Harold Bloom’s remark that we live in an age in which satire is not possible. Armin Meiwes, a German cannibal, replied to an advertisement in which Meiwes’s victim, a homosexual, sought someone to kill him and eat him. Meiwes’ defense claimed that he should not be convicted of manslaughter (which eventually he was) but of “killing on request,” a form of euthanasia that carries a shorter sentence. After all, Meiwes said, his victim requested that he be killed.

All sane people recognize that no one can consent to being killed, but Meiwes novel defense illustrates the lunacy of accepting the notion that consensual acts are victimless actions.What two consenting adults do, we are told by the Enlightened minds of today, is of no consequence to society. This could be explored at length if I had the inclination to do so (or the space), but it will have to suffice to say that clearly being killed and eaten is a privacy right that society is not willing to tolerate. But because of the illogic of giving privacy rights such importance and debased notions of rights based on consent (instead of rights based on what ought to be), perhaps the idea that society will not tolerate consensual cannibalism should be qualified with “for now.”