Media Watch

British TV Channel to Broadcast an Abortion

SYDNEY MORNING HERALD, April 6 — Channel 4 in Britain has decided to broadcast on its network April 20 a 30-minute documentary showing an abortion.

“My Fetus” shows an abortion at four weeks of pregnancy, an inspection of fetal remains of a seven-week pregnancy and images of a 10-, 11- and 21-week aborted baby.

The film was written and directed by Julia Black, daughter of the founder of Marie Stopes International, the country's largest abortion provider outside the National Health Service.

Black, who had an abortion at age 21, said she wants viewers to re-examine the abortion debate, the paper reported.

“It is easy to be pro-choice without challenging yourself about what that means,” she said. “I needed to be convinced that abortion is a morally legitimate procedure even after knowing what it involves and I wanted to take viewers on the same journey.”

An editor for the program at Channel 4, speaking in support of the film, said she didn't believe there was “ever an argument for total censorship.”

Venezuelan President Criticizes Catholic Bishops

VHEADLINE.COM (Venezuela), April 5 — Venezuelan president Hugo Chavez Frias criticized Catholic bishops on Palm Sunday, April 4, for “forgetting the preferential option for the poor they had promised to abide by and for their alignment with the capitalist oligarchy,” the news site reported.

During his Sunday radio address that day, the president received blessed palms and asked God to forgive the bishops because “they know not what they have done.”

The Venezuelan Bishops' Conference had issued a statement expressing concern for the human-rights situation in the country and supporting a recall referendum as the only solution for political problems.

Retired Cardinal Castillo Lara also earlier called Chavez Frias a “tyrant,” saying “there isn't a shadow of democracy” in Venezuela.

Christian Reference in EU Constitution Gains Support

EKKLESIA, April 5 — Whether or not there should be a reference to Christianity in the future European Union Constitution has been a hot topic for some time. Now, according to Ekklesia news service, the notion might be gaining support.

About 10 countries out of the future 25 support a reference to Christian values and tradition in the constitution's preamble, according to Polish deputy minister for foreign affairs Jan Truszczynski.

The purpose of the preamble, written by former French president Valéry Giscard d'Estaing and European convention members, is to provide a quotable introduction — much like the “We the people” in the U.S. Constitution — for citizens to study and memorize, the news site reported.

Poland has been strongly pushing for a Christian reference in the preamble but other countries such as France and Belgium have opposed it. In addition to the Catholic Church, the news site noted, the Greek Orthodox Church and Italy, Spain and Portugal also appear to be lobbying for a Christian reference.

The International Conference has been negotiating an EU Constitution since October. If all member countries sign it, it still has to be ratified in national parliaments or through referenda.