This morning I sent a letter of resignation to the convenor of our local White Ribbon Day Australia Convoy. White Ribbon Australia has for many years campaigned against domestic violence in all its forms and worked hard to educate Australians. This is commendable and nothing that follows should be read as a rejection of the principles that underly that work.
However, over the past few days I was made aware that White Ribbon Australia also have a position statement on abortion that they published in February 2017 where they effectively advocate for unlimited abortion to birth. This has placed me in an impossible situation. I am outraged by the death of over 50 Australian women a year through domestic violence but I cannot even begin to find the words to respond to the death of perhaps 80,000 unborn babies over the same period. White Ribbon Australia present themselves as advocating for the protection of some of the most vulnerable in our community while at the same time promoting the active killing of even more vulnerable babies with the consequent often life-time trauma caused to those parents who are persuaded to participate in such acts.
The frustration in all this is that it is totally unnecessary. If White Ribbon had simply stuck to their core campaign then they would not place me and many others in this impossible situation. We want, along with the organisations that we represent, to work with whoever we can to eradicate family violence. But we cannot be associated with what is an even greater evil.
For that is what it is. I’m sure most readers do not need me to rehearse the arguments around abortion. Babies are human, made in the image of God and deserving our protection in their vulnerability (Psalm 139:13-16). Jesus spoke clearly about how children are of equal worth (Matt. 19:14) and deserving of prioritisation in our protection (Matt. 18:6). But they are not the only victims of abortion as those who counsel parents can testify.
Yesterday the Catholic Leader published on the growing controversy:
Controversy growing after White Ribbon pledges support for decriminalising abortion in Queensland
WHITE Ribbon Australia, known as the “Say no to violence against women” organisation is under scrutiny for supporting late-term abortion.
The nationally-recognised charity has also entered the Queensland election fray by supporting the “It’s Not 1899 Campaign” by Pro Choice Queensland.
White Ribbon is named alongside organisations supporting candidates in the current Queensland election who have made a “pro-choice” pledge to “vote to remove abortion from the criminal code”.
Ahead of White Ribbon Day on November 25, South Australian Christian high school teacher Trevor Grace and his wife Robyn, who runs Pregnancy Help SA, are leading a national campaign to inform organisations of the charity’s pro-abortion stance.
“Few people are aware that White Ribbon supports and endorses full-term abortion,” Mr Grace, a long-standing political activist, said.
Mr Grace said it was “hypocrisy” for White Ribbon Australia to come out quite publicly to advocate for late-term abortion and even the decriminalisation of abortion.
“The charity (which is being supported by public figures, media personalities, politicians and social justice advocates) claims to be ‘the world’s largest movement of men and boys working to end men’s violence against women and girls’,” he said.
“The irony there is that fifty per cent of the children killed in the womb are female.”
Hillsong Church, which opposes abortion but is committed to stopping family violence, has already dropped its partnership with White Ribbon.
Brisbane archdiocese is among Catholic organisations to have supported White Ribbon.
“In light of these developments, which are obviously a concern to us, the archdiocese is looking into any associations it has with White Ribbon,” the archdiocese said in a statement.
Decisions like this are difficult. However they will be necessary from time to time. Today this one has presented itself. If you think the systematic killing of children in the womb is wrong then I want to urge you to reconsider your association with White Ribbon Australia, despite the good work that they do.
This piece was originally posted on davidould.net
David Ould is the Rector of Glenquarie Anglican Church in Sydney, Australia.