November 15th 2003

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Articles from this issue:

COVER STORY: Californian wildfires: the causes

EDITORIAL: Backdoor bid to approve therapeutic cloning

CANBERRA OBSERVED : The Greens' road-block to a double dissolution

AGRICULTURE : Farmers call for action on sugar crisis

BANANA QUARANTINE: Will we kill off our golden goose?

FAMILY: I'm sorry I am heterosexual

TRUST: Palliative Care, not Euthanasia

STRAWS IN THE WIND: Higher education / China Syndrome

LETTERS: Militant consumerism (letter)

LETTERS: Hanson a political prisoner (letter)

LETTERS: Forgetting the golden rule (letter)

LETTERS: SBS broadcasting of the Hanoi news (letter)

HEALTH UPDATE: Abortion-Breast Cancer link reaps medical malpractice payout

HISTORY: Dr Jim Cairns, the Kremlin and the World Peace Council

OBITUARY : Madame Chiang Kai-shek dies at 105

UNEMPLOYMENT: Deregulation and free trade are destroying country employment

MEDIA: Five issues Australia must address

TRADING BLOCS: Risks in the US Free Trade Agreement

Dairy industry shrinks under deregulation

FILM REVIEW: Bonhoeffer

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Forgetting the golden rule (letter)

by Dr Les Hemingway

News Weekly, November 15, 2003

I do general practice locum work in various parts of Australia.

In that work I meet relatively few people of child bearing age who do not use contraception, in one form or another, and I meet very few doctors who refuse to cooperate with this activity.

This makes me wonder how far modern society will travel down the contraceptive path, before realising that it is a dead-end street.

The golden rule: "Always treat others as you would like them to treat you" (Matthew 7:12) is an essential prerequisite for a civilised society.

It promotes the consideration for others which oils the wheels of industry and helps society to function smoothly for the benefit of all.

Couple use contraception so they can enjoy themselves while excluding any third party who may otherwise intrude.

This is self-centred behaviour which must act against observance of the golden rule.

But that is not contraception's only contribution to the "me" generation.

Contraception is used so sexual activity will not be complicated by unwanted pregnancies.

This attitude easily spread from preventing pregnancy to terminating pregnancies which have already begun, as shown by the current enthusiasm for "morning after" pills.

These are taken to expel a baby who may have been conceived before he or she get a "foot in the door" through implanting the uterus.

And, of course, if contraception and "morning after" pills fail, back up is available from a friendly neighbourhood abortionist.

There could be few actions more selfish than abortion. Abortion is a recipe for social disharmony and Australia has too much of that already.

Litigation and insurance costs place sporting events and even essential medical services at risk.

Unemployment and poverty are far too prevalent, pollution, salinity and other environmental problems exist and around 40 percent of marriages end in divorce.

These problems will only be overcome through widespread consideration for others and a willingness to work together for the common good

They can only worsen if contraception and abortion continue at their present rates.

Dr Les Hemingway
Warrnambool, Vic

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