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For during your leadership, Mr Blair, secularism has reared its ugly intolerant head in so many areas of government And secularists and former Marxists seem to have taken giant but quiet, unannounced strides when it comes to obstructing religious practices and interfering in the teaching of religious beliefs.

You would immediately want to dispute this no doubt, Mr Blair. But just look at the evidence.

Catholic chaplains can no longer be given the names of Catholic patients in hospitals. This has come about because an official in the Department of Health has interpreted a clause in, the Data Protection Act of all things, to mean that it was against the law for Catholic priests to be given the names of Catholic patients. Hospitals were then informed of the official's view and can no longer disclose the names of Catholic patients. But no judge has made this decision. It has been made by an anonymous bureaucrat.

When a state interferes and pokes its nose into the most intimate areas of family life it has already become a totalitarian government.

But it ended a religious practice which had been working well for more than 100 years. As a result Catholics are now dying in hospital without being able to see a priest or receive the last rites. The official who made this curious, unjust ruling should be named, Mr Blair. For no one ever envisaged when the Data Protection Act became law that it would hinder the work of hospital chaplains. And whether the Data Protection Act does or does not mean that priests can or can't be given the names of Catholic hospital patients should be decided in a court of law by a judge not in the back office of a Ministry by an anonymous bureaucrat.

Then there is the recent horrific Government guideline to doctors regarding teenage abortions, which comes in the wake of Melissa Smith case. Melissa, a 14-year-old schoolgirl, was put forward for an abortion without her parents' knowledge or consent. But her mother did find out and she discussed the situation with her daughter who immediately changed her mind and wanted to have her baby. But it was too late; the pill prescribed by the doctors was already taking effect. And what makes the story even more tragic is that when her boyfriend discovered what was happening he too wanted to keep the baby.

The Department of Health have decided that those who recommended Melissa to have an abortion and not tell her mother anything about it were perfectly correct in acting that way. So now this will be the accepted practice. When a teenager becomes pregnant and seeks help she will be advised to have an abortion but on no account to discuss such a traumatic decision with her mother. The state clearly thinks it knows best.

But, Mr Blair, in a civilised Christian society the responsibility for the care and education of children is first and foremost that of the parents who brought them into the world. The state has no right to interfere in these matters unless a crime is being committed. And for the state to be involved in a deliberate deception involving a mother and daughter is despicable. When a state interferes and pokes its nose into the most intimate areas of family life it has already become a totalitarian government.

This week we have also learned of the latest ruling of Education Secretary and former Marxist Charles Clarke. His hard, unsmiling face often reminds me of a Stalinist commissar. And so do some of his decisions. His latest edict is to overrule Catholic bishops about the admission of Catholics to Catholic schools and discriminate against Catholic parents who want to ensure a Catholic education for their children.

As an example of "Yes Minister" obscure, appalling English, his ruling takes some beating. "The Secretary of State considers that this test of Catholicism is potentially not a fair one and may act to fetter parental preferences by influencing the choices a parent may make by disadvantaging them if they do not put a Catholic school as their first preference."

In plain English: the state not the bishops or Catholic headmasters will decide who goes to Catholic schools. With this ruling Catholics have now completely lost control of their schools.

There is the sex education syllabus which Catholic schools, because of Government directives, are now forced to teach. This includes instructing pupils on every method of artificial contraception. This is in direct conflict with the teaching of the Catholic Church which has always taught that artificial contraception is a serious sin and a grave disorder.

It is interesting to note that the state's reason for demanding that sex and contraception be taught in Catholic schools was for the benefit of pupils. It would safeguard their sexual health, it was argued.

However, since sex education became an essential requirement of school curricula sexual diseases have rocketed out of control.

The great myth that has been propagated is that there is such a thing as safe sex if a condom is used. This is completely untrue. It is now an accepted fact that condoms afford little or no protection against human papilloma virus (HPV). This is the virus which in more than 90 per cent of cases causes cervical cancer and is killing more women than the AIDS virus. And condoms, it is now only too painfully clear, provide only partial protection against HIV infection.

How many people have died because of this myth of safe sex that has been taught and is still being taught in our schools, Mr Blair?

Few people now have any doubts that it is the Government's sex education programme that is responsible for the sexual health disaster. Even newspapers are now saying, "we teach our children sex and then wonder why they have it". To all reasonable people it is obvious that the sexual disaster is a result of instructing the young in sex as if it were another activity without any moral code or guidelines.

Naturally the Department of Education doesn't agree. Instead of scrapping the sex education policy its answer is to have more sex education and to involve ever younger children.

Cardinal Keith O'Brien, of Edinburgh, recently equated Scotland's proposed health education strategy as "state-sponsored sexual abuse of children". This was in response to a project by Government financed Family Planning Association. It was series of "sexual health education " booklets aimed at 13 to 16-year-olds which contained what was described as "the most disgusting and perverted descriptions and pictures of sexual intercourse, masturbation, homosexual practices and contraceptives and abortion.

This, Mr Blair, was produced with tax payers' money to pervert taxpayers' children. It was only after there was a public outcry that these booklets were taken out of circulation. Now another Government funded agency, the Brook Advisory Association, is with a great handout of taxpayers' money distributing more corrupting material such as a "Schools Sex Manual" under a subtitle "Nice Girls have Sex". There is also a full colour booklet (no expense spared) for 13-year-olds called "The Good Grope Guide". Is it any wonder underage sex, childhood pregnancy and child abortion continue to increase, Mr Blair?

The sex health crisis now threatens a whole generation. In 2003 there were 89,000 reported cases of chlamydia, 24,000 reported cases of gonorrhoea and 1,575 reported cases of syphilis, an increase in syphilis of 28 percent on the previous year. And at this very moment there is an HIV time bomb in our midst. It is estimated there are more than 16,000 people spreading HIV across Britain because they are unaware they have the AIDS virus.

Even you, Mr Blair, must admit that this doesn't say much for the Department of Education's promotion of sexual health through compulsory sex education. So why, Mr Blair, does your Government still persist in this disastrous sex education policy?

Many well-informed people who have studied the present problem now believe that the real purpose of sex education is much more sinister. That it is the destruction of Christian morality and the family. You have only to look at the history of sex education to discover this. The first sex education programmes in the world were introduced by Georg Lukacs during the Hungarian Bolshevik regime of 1919. Lukacs, the deputy commissar for culture, called for the "annihilation of the old values" and "the revolutionary destruction of society". To bring this about he ordered that children should be instructed in sexual intercourse, free love and told how outdated marriage was.

Finally there is your government's Mental Capacity Bill now before Parliament, Mr Blair. A group of leading doctors, lawyers and clergymen contends that this will set up a pathway for the setting up of routine lethal injections. The bill would make "death-wish wills" both written and verbal, binding and would turn medical practice upside down. A doctor would be guilty of a criminal offence is he did not bring about the death of the patient.

The bill as it stands will allow people to appoint someone to exercise Lasting Power of Attorney. This is also called a living will but a "death-wish will" is a much more real and accurate description. But, call it what you will, it empowers someone to act on a person's behalf if he or she loses mental capacity, such having a stroke. This means that while a person is seriously ill in hospital someone else can decide whether he or she can be starved to death by being refused food or liquids.

And it doesn't stop there. The Government have admitted in the Commons that such a life or death decision doesn't need to have been written. If, for example, a person has told his or her flatmate that he or she would not want to be resuscitated, that could be considered under the Bill to be an advance decision to refuse treatment. The person's life could then be terminated as result of the alleged statement even though there would be no way of checking if the statement were true or not.

The former leader of the Opposition, Mr Duncan Smith, warning of the dangers of this evil, ill conceived legislation, raised the case of Mrs Marjorie Nighbert, an 83 year old lady who was in a nursing home in Florida after a stroke. She had never signed anything like a "death-wish will", but had given Power of Attorney to her brother, who forbade tube feeding. Marjorie pleaded with nurses to be given food and her case went to court. No one on either side disputed that she was asking for food but the Judge, Gere Tolten, ruled that she was not "competent" to ask for food.

As a result Majorie Nighbert died in terrible agony suffering from thirst and starvation on April 6th 1995. At one stage she had to be restrained, that is strapped to her bed, to stop her trying to get the food of other patients.

Is this Christian civilisation and the rule of love, Mr Blair? It is more like a nightmare from the depths of Hell.

Your government seems to be steeped in the culture of death and permissiveness that Pope John Paul II has so often warned the world against. So, Mr Blair, is it any wonder that people now fear you are presiding over one the most anti-Christian, anti-Catholic Governments in modern times?

 

William Keenan is a British freelance journalist. Email address: wkeenan(at)onetel.com