Wednesday, April 17, 2024

BEGOTTEN NOT MADE

By Tim Rohr


Recently the Alabama Supreme Court held that embryos created through in vitro fertilization (IVF) should be considered children. 

The ruling is the logical conclusion of the argument that "life begins at conception," and the decision has created a political conundrum. Many "pro-life" politicians have never considered the status or fate of children conceived in a tube and left in a medical deep-freeze, or selectively terminated after being implanted in somebody's womb.

Regardless of the politics, the elephant in the room is the relative silence of the Catholic Church at this point. 

The Catholic Church is probably the only "organized religion" which has clear position on reproductive technologies which separate what the Church calls "the unitive and the procreative." 

In short, the Church teaches that conception of children is to happen the way God designed it or not at all. IVF, in particular, is gravely immoral because it often involves the destruction of multiple children in embryo. 

This teaching is one of the Church's "best kept secrets." It's an issue that pastors generally want to avoid even more than abortion and contraception. However, if there ever was a time for the Catholic Church to take the lead, it is now. But, for the most part: "crickets." 

Meanwhile though, Catholic Church teaching is still "there" - lurking in the recesses of the Catechism and episcopal websites. Here's a decent exposition of the issue at the USCCB.

Begotten Not Made: A Catholic View of Reproductive Technology

And here is an honest article about the non-Catholic Christian view:

"It’s caused me to see my own experience with IVF differently and to wish I had been better informed. While the treatment was successful for me, helping me become pregnant with two healthy babies, the remaining embryos I have stored on ice have caused great heartache."

Tuesday, April 16, 2024

THE ROT EATING OUR HEARTS

 (Posted by frenchie)





One of the hardest challenge for most citizens today, for most Catholics for sure is to discern right from wrong, lies from truth, propaganda manipulation from reality.

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Monday, April 15, 2024

AN IMPORTANT COMMENT

The following comment was made on the post THE TEMPLE HAS ALREADY BEEN REBUILT.  

AnonymousApril 15, 2024 at 5:58 PM

Hi Tim. I was a neo for 26 years & left 10 years ago. It is good to discover that I made the right decision to leave! The Neos are supporting the warmongering Zionists who have infiltrated the true 12 tribes of Israel. Need to pray for those stuck in the neo heretical construct of reality! Thank you Diana for clarifying their errors.

Saturday, April 13, 2024

THE REAL COST OF "BELLE'S LAW"

By Tim Rohr

Aside from the probably hundreds of thousands of dollars Guam taxpayers have paid and are still paying to fund the litigation around “Belle’s Law” - the more than 30 year-old anti-abortion law that was negligently left in our Code after it was enjoined just four days after it sprang to life in 1990, there is the cost in dead babies. And it is not small.

Note: "Belle's Law" is the nickname for the legislation introduced by the late-Senator Elizabeth "Belle" Arriola.

According to Anita Arriola, the attorney representing the pro-abortion side in the eventual 1990 lawsuit, the number of abortions per year in Guam was thought to be between 600 to 1000. (Orlando Sentinel, May 6, 1990

Note: Anita Arriola is the daughter of Belle Arriola

And there is no reason to believe that those numbers declined over the next thirty years (or at least until 2008).

Note: In 2008, The Esperansa Project was formed with the aim of introducing and supporting legislation to regulate Guam's then mostly un-regulated abortion industry. The only laws on the books were one requiring abortions be performed by a qualified physician in an appropriate facility and a reporting law that was never enforced or even checked on.

While the blame for the deaths of an estimated 30,000 children can certainly be spread around, I contend that the person most responsible for this staggering loss of life is former-Archbishop Anthony Apuron.

The figure of Apuron looms large throughout the whole process, from threatening to excommunicate any of the 20 of 21 senators who were Catholic for not voting for the bill that became Belle’s Law, to his presence in the legislative hall during the vote:

“The law was approved March 9 by all 21 members of Guam’s one-house Legislature, 20 of whom are Catholic, while the island’s bishop sat in the chamber’s balcony.” (Orlando Sentinel, May 6, 1990)

"...the formidable presence of Archbishop Apuron…in the legislative hall when the vote was taken." (Asian/Pacific Islander American Women: A Historical Anthology, Pg. 372)

"...Archbishop Anthony Apuron, who had considered excommunicating or censuring any of the 20 Catholic senators voting against the bill." (Orlando Sentinel, May 6, 1990)

Knowing Apuron (and his handlers) as I do after having gone head to head with him over several terrible years as Guam’s 50 year-long clergy sex abuse crisis (here and here) unfolded - with Apuron at the center of it, I can clearly see Apuron, robed and mitred, wielding his self-inflated authority to threaten, crush, and otherwise condemn anyone who dared flaunt his will. 

And it’s not hard to imagine the Catholic lawmakers thinking to themselves: “Screw it. It’s going to be found unconstitutional anyway. It’s not worth it. Let’s just vote for this to get Apuron off our backs and let the courts take care of it.” And that’s what happened.

What's amazing is that Apuron did not champion the legislation under the banner of Catholic Church teaching, in the name of God, or even the rights of the unborn. Instead, Apuron followed then-Governor Ada's lead to use the legislation as a vehicle to assert Guam's right to self-determination by openly challenging Roe v Wade, or more specifically, the authority of the U.S. government to impose Roe on Guam. Thus Belle's Law became more about anti-colonialism than about anti-abortion, and Apuron joined right in. 

In a speech to a national pro-life conference, Apuron...

"...boldly presented Guam’s pro-life stance not as an outcome of an ecumenical pro-life movement, but as the outcome of a 'Catholic people called Chamorros,' with a distinct , culture, language, and religious beliefs, who for centuries have been 'obscured, ignored, or trampled on.' In the final analysis, he asserted, 'our struggle to protect the sanctity of life is tantamount to the preservation of our cultural heritage.' The very existence of a matrilineal tradition in Guam, the archbishop argued, underscores the particular importance of motherhood as the source of female power. Implicit in this statement is the assumption that it should be the responsibility of all women in Guam, irrespective of identity or allegiance to assure the continuity of the Chamorro people and culture.  (Asian/Pacific Islander American Women: A Historical Anthology, Pg. 374)

The same paragraph goes on to say: "This was a burden of representation that neither the U.S. judicial system nor some people in Guam could support." And of course, it (the judicial system) didn't. Belle's Law would have been found unconstitutional anyway, but at least it would have died on the sacrificial pyre of a Catholic bishop's unwavering grip on the fundamental Catholic teaching of every human being's inalienable, God-given, right to life. But no. For Apuron this was about "the preservation of our cultural heritage." 

Again, knowing Apuron as I do, he probably didn't even write this speech. Like we were to learn later as the Neocat and clergy sex abuse wars broke out, Apuron was a willing mouthpiece for anyone who made him feel important. But there was a cost to "feeling important." 

The Cost

The fact is that without Apuron's threats to excommunicate the 20 Catholic senators, many, knowing, or at least predicting, that the bill, if enacted into law, would be found unconstitutional and enjoined, may have in fact voted against it, or at least amended it to pass constitutional muster, and we wouldn't be fighting this fight 30 years later. 

As I outlined in my oral argument before the Supreme Court of Guam in July 2023, Belle's Law was crafted in the shadow of a recent U.S. Supreme Court decision (Webster) which opened the door for some restrictions on abortion:

"At the same time there was a complex interaction over abortion among activists, interest groups, legislatures, governors, and courts being played out in several states. The was sparked by the July 1989 Supreme Court ruling in Webster v Reproductive Health Services, which opened the door for states to test the limits of how far they could in restricting access to abortion." (Asian/Pacific Islander American Women: A Historical Anthology, Pg. 366)

However, as I have already alluded, under the threat of excommunication and "the formidable presence of Archbishop Apuron…in the legislative hall when the vote was taken," the lawmakers basically punted, and that punt is still flying...and costing.

The reason that punt has led to at least 30,000 deaths is because of the then-million dollar taxpayer funded price tag for the litigation following the passage of Belle's Law, making it so that no lawmaker wanted to get near the abortion issue for the next three decades. 

In 2010, when Bill 54-30 (informed consent) was being debated on the Floor of the Legislature, I distinctly remember the late-Senator Ben Pangelinan using the cost of litigating Belle's Law as a battering ram to kill 54-30. And, during the next several years, as The Esperansa Project pushed through more bills, the legal fiasco following Belle's Law was always brought up by the legislative pro-aborts to scare off support.

Meanwhile, most of the rest of the United States had capitalized on the door opened by Webster (1989) and then Casey (1992) to enact commonsense, mother-protecting legislation such as informed consent. However, because of Guam's reluctance to touch the issue, Guam, by 2008, and because it had next to no legislation regulating abortion, had sunk to the easiest place in the nation to procure an abortion, massacring approximately 1000 babies a year, and this, on an island that was 90% Catholic. 

Amazingly, as abortion reports later would show, two-thirds of those aborted children had mothers who identified their ethnicity as Chamorro which is ironic given Apuron's "bold" speech in 1990 about the "continuity of the Chamorro people and culture." 

Apuron did get one thing right in that speech though: his reference to the "importance of motherhood as the source of female power." Once liberated to do so, many Guam mothers exercised their "female power" by aborting up to 25% of their next generation. (Based on an average of 3000 births per year and the estimated 1000 abortions per year.)

The sad thing, if it can get any sadder, is that Apuron never had the authority or the grounds to excommunicate anybody. Only a politician who openly advocates for abortion (like the current governor) can be excommunicated. Not voting for an anti-abortion bill doesn't qualify. It is not the same as writing a bill to promote abortion. Those senators had nothing to fear except Apuron's shadow.

Of course this whole mess can be instantly resolved, even after thirty years, by a senator or senators who tout their pro-life credentials to introduce a bill removing Belle's Law and replacing it with a more accurate and less troubled one. 

Meanwhile, the current apostolic administrator has all the authority and evidence he needs to deny communion to openly pro-abortion politicians like "you-know-who." 

Thursday, April 11, 2024

THE BLACK LINE HISTORY OF INFORMED CONSENT (IN GUAM) - CONTINUED



LINK to online version (Reference links and notes added) 

Informed consent: Black line history continued

First things first. In my last column, I referred to the Fisher-Parkinson bill trashing the law requiring informed consent for abortion as Bill 167-37. That is incorrect. The correct number of the bill is 162-37.

In that column, I told the story of the tortuous journey of what eventually became Public Law 31-235, otherwise known as The Women’s Reproductive Health Act of 2012.

I concluded by letting you know that even though the legislation, which had its start in 2008, was finally signed into law four years later, implementation of the new law would be stalled for another year due to eleventh-hour machinations by the bill’s opponents and that I would soon tell the “rest of the story.”

But first, a little more history.

Laws requiring informed consent for abortion had been found to be constitutional since Planned Parenthood v. Casey (1992). Given that abortion is usually seen as a “difficult decision,” as even abortion supporters admit, it was reasonable, at least in the eyes of the Casey court, that a woman seeking an abortion should be provided medically appropriate information to assist her in making that “difficult decision.”

By 2008, when Guam’s first informed consent bill was introduced, many states had enacted laws requiring some form of informed consent for abortion, so why not Guam?

In his transmittal letter to the Legislature after signing the Act into law, then-Gov. Eddie Baza Calvo wrote: “I cannot even begin to imagine how providing women with information to empower them to make a decision that not only impacts their psychological health, but the life within them, could ever be the wrong thing to do.”

However, the five-year battle (2008 to 2013) to “provide women with information to empower them” demonstrated that there was a majority in the Legislature who did believe it was the “wrong thing to do” – and the latest attack by Sens. Tom Fisher and William Parkinson on empowering women with information is more of the same.

Bill 52-31 was the third attempt to legislate informed consent for abortion. The previous two attempts, Bills 405-29 and 54-30, had gone nowhere. The 29th Legislature ended before 405-29 could be acted on, and 54-30, as I detailed in my last column, was so badly mangled that it ended up accomplishing the opposite of the original intent and was mercifully vetoed by then-Gov. Felix Camacho.

It appeared that 52-31 would suffer a fate similar to its predecessors as the 31st Legislature ground down to its final weeks with 52-31 blotted and bled by then-Sen. Rory Respicio’s black lines. (See previous column.)

Then-Gov. Calvo, who had authored all three informed consent bills, apparently had had it with the senatorial shenanigans and called the Legislature into a special session on Oct. 24, 2012, to address the bill.

The general election was only days away, and Calvo was forcing lawmakers to publicly take sides on an issue that could, in a few days, have decisive election consequences. Thus, the stage was set for one of Guam’s most dramatic and emotional legislative sessions.

There was yelling and crying, accusations and cursing, and drama, drama, drama. And the drama was intensified by the presence of about 50 “Christian Mothers” dressed in their signature white dresses, holding candles and glaring at the senators through the glass separating the audience room and the legislative hall. (You can watch it for yourself on YouTube. Search for “31st Guam Legislature Special Session - October 24, 2012.”)

I wasn’t surprised that the bill passed, but when I saw the names of the bill’s opponents – especially Respicio’s – in the “Yeah” column, I became suspicious.

At some point during the debate, the bill had been amended to include a provision requiring the printed materials required by the bill to be subjected to the rule-making process as set forth in the Administrative Adjudication Act.

This was a stroke of genius by the pro-aborts. They were able to appear “pro-life” by voting for the bill just days before the election but keep the legislation from being implemented for months or even years to come.

I’m out of space for this column, so I’ll continue another time. Meanwhile, the thing that struck me in remembering this history is how it has been male lawmakers who have consistently remained at the forefront of every effort to destroy legislation aimed at protecting the unborn and their mothers, including the latest raid by Fisher and Parkinson.

It’s not hard to guess why.


Tim Rohr has resided in Guam since 1987. He has raised a family of 11 children, owned several businesses and most recently been active in local issues via his blog, JungleWatch.info, letters to local publications and occasional public appearances. He can be contacted at timrohr.guam@gmail.com.

+++++

Bill 52-31 Voting Sheet


Wednesday, March 27, 2024

THE BLACK LINE HISTORY OF INFORMED CONSENT FOR ABORTION (IN GUAM)


LINK to online version (Reference links and notes added)

Note: 167-37 is incorrect. The correct number is 162-37.




Reading through Bill 162-37 brought back memories. The legislation was introduced by Senators Parkinson and Fisher to “update” The Women’s Reproductive Health Act of 2012, otherwise known as “informed consent for abortion.”

The Parkinson-Fisher bill is a funny exercise in black lines. After the first couple pages setting out the intent and definitions, the rest of the 13 pages is a copy of the 2012 Act with about 90% of it struck-through, black-lined, cancelled, quashed, etc., with no substitute language inserted. So much for “updating.”

Parkinson and Fisher aren’t the first senatorial chair-warmers to draw endless black lines through legislation aimed at providing women information about abortion and its alternatives. That dishonor goes to former Senator Rory Respicio who did it twice.

Respicio’s first black-line slashing of informed consent legislation was Bill 54-30, authored by then-Senator Eddie Calvo. After almost a two year delay in moving the bill through the legislature, a delay, in part, orchestrated by Respicio, Respicio, during a late-night debate on the session floor, introduced a substitute bill, which, like Bill 162-37, was page after page of black lines.

Laughably, the only thing left of the original bill was language which warned the expectant mother of the risks of giving birth instead of the risks of procuring an abortion. Incredibly Respicio’s substitute bill - which accomplished exactly the opposite of the original - passed!

(Note: Respicio's black-lined bill is not available. However, the effect of Respicio's black lines is demonstrated by comparing the original bill to the bill that was substituted and passed [See §3218.1 (b)(1)(B)].)

The next day, I got busy to convince then-Governor Felix Camacho to veto it. He did, and there was no vote to override.

(Note: Govern Camacho's veto letter.)

After Senator Eddie Calvo became Governor Eddie Calvo, he used his organic act authority to introduce Bill 52-31 - another attempt at legislating informed consent for abortion. Once again Respicio played spoiler for the better part of two years.

Finally, the bill had a public hearing.

During the hearing there was an altercation between Respicio and myself. I had handed a note to a friend who was testifying in favor of the bill and Respicio yelled at me. I yelled back and the committee chairman (then-Senator Dennis Rodriguez) had to jump in to “restore decorum.” Things went downhill from there. The fiasco is memorialized in the bill’s committee report.

Despite the contentious hearing, Bill 52-31 received a committee “go” vote. However, the next stop was Respicio’s Rules Committee. Expecting more eleventh hour chicanery like what Respicio pulled with Bill 54-30, I made sure to watch the meeting via video.

Sure enough, when it came time to discuss Bill 52-31, instead of proceeding with the discussion, Respicio began distributing copies of a mystery document to the other members.

After receiving his copy, Senator Chris Duenas attempted to ask a question and Respicio cut him off when he called  over an aid. After whispering something to the aid, the aid disappeared off camera and a moment later the video feed stopped.

I learned later that the mystery document was another Respicio strikethrough of nearly the whole bill. This time the only thing left of the original bill was a 24 hour waiting period.

The waiting period provided time for the mother to review required information in order to make an informed decision. However, Respicio had struck out all the information provisions, so the end effect of Respicio’s black lines was to require a woman seeking an abortion to go to the doctor and then be sent home for 24 hours with nothing.

I got a copy of Respicio’s second slash and burn job and called into a local radio talk show. I was ripping into Respicio when Respicio called in and started ripping into me. It made for great talk radio for a few minutes. But it ended when Respicio angrily hung up. The host and I had a good laugh about that.

The yelling and screaming wasn’t over though. In an attempt to get the bill passed, Governor Calvo called the legislature into a special session to try to force a vote. The session was only a few weeks before the next election and some of the senators were wild with rage at being forced to take a position so close to an election. Some were even sobbing. It was a real spectacle.

(Note: LINK to the video recording of the special session.)

Bill 52-31 passed but not without more eleventh hour shenanigans which delayed enactment of the bill for another year. I’ll write about that next time.

Tim Rohr has resided in Guam since 1987. He has raised a family of 11 children, owned several businesses, and most recently been active in local issues via his blog, JungleWatch.info, letters to local publications and occasional public appearances. He can be contacted at timrohr.guam@gmail.com.

Relevant Links:

History of Bill 54-30 (Then-Sen. Frank Aguon, Jr., whose committee controlled the bill, was, with Respicio, the nexus of the nemesis which tried to deep-six the bill. Later, Aguon had a change of heart and helped champion the legislation through to enactment.)

Bill 54-30 has been accepted (Nov. 26, 2010)

Conspiracy in the Guam Legislature, July 7, 2011

Bill 52-31 COR Mtg 03/28/11 (Notes on Respicio's Committee on Rules Meeting. The video recording of the meeting is no longer available. I'll see what I can do to fix that.)

Rohr vs Respicio on K57 (The recording is no longer available, however the text of the call is transcribed here.)

Thursday, March 14, 2024

BRING BACK THE AGAT POST OFFICE


Bring back the Agat Post Office

On May 28, 2022, the Guam Daily Post reported that the Agat Post Office, which serves approximately 800 box holders, would be temporarily closed due to safety concerns.

Quoting the Guam Postmaster, the Post reported: “We apologize for the inconvenience caused by this temporary closure. We will provide an update on the status of this facility as soon as more information is available.”

I don’t know about you, but as far as I’m concerned two years isn’t “temporary,” and I am unaware of any “updates” other than seeing what was the Agat Post Office demolished and hauled away.

I moved to Agat in the mid-90’s which was about the time the Post Office was built. It was a sturdy wooden structure and withstood Typhoons Paka and Pongsana. However, the post office, like so many government buildings in Guam, fell victim to “Typhoon No-Maintenance.”  

Maintenance would have been simple. The only real problem with the building, at least from what I could see, was the rain gutters. Over the years, the gutters filled with dirt and debris, backing up the rainfall onto the roof, eventually destroying the building beneath it.

Anyone with a home with a roof knows that clogged rain gutters and drains are the usual cause of roof leaks and that roof leaks lead to lots of other problems.

I didn’t personally conduct an inspection, but the jungle growing out of the rain gutters was easy for all of us 800 box holders to see every time we checked our mail.

After the Agat Post Office was “temporarily” closed, we box holders were instructed to pick up our mail “over the counter” at the Hagatna Post Office.

Thinking that this was just temporary, I put aside the fact that now instead of a ten-minute, two mile round trip to check my mail, it was now a 35 mile journey. But more than the miles - and since I had to get in line to check my mail “over the counter” - checking the mail morphed from a mere ten minutes into at least a two hour ordeal.

At first, it wasn’t so bad because the Hagatna Post Office gave us southerners an “Agat line,” an express line to bypass the regular Hagatna line. However, there is no longer an “Agat line,” and we Agat box holders must fall into what are normally very long lines just to see if we have mail or not.

An Hagatna box holder can check for mail by just opening his or her box, and then if necessary, line up to do business at the counter. Not so for us southerners. We must get in line just to check to see if we even have mail.

And maybe it’s just my luck, but I’ve rarely been in a Hagatna Post Office line that didn’t take at least a half an hour to get to “the counter;” and, a few days ago, I was in line for an hour and a half only to find that I had two pieces of “junk mail.”

Perhaps the Guam Postmaster believes we Agat box holders are being compensated for our troubles by not being charged for our “boxes.” However, I, and I’m sure many others, would gladly pay the full box fee just to have our Agat line back.

But of course, what we really want back is our post office. Maybe one of those faces on all the new campaign signs in Hagat will be smart enough to see how to pick up an easy eight hundred votes. I can guarantee at least one.

Wednesday, February 28, 2024

STUFF WE SHOULDN'T BE DOING IN THE FIRST PLACE


As published online in the Post

I get it. I get it that some Christian observers of Lent (including the pope) want certain traditional Lenten practices, such as fasting and abstinence, to be less about giving up food and more about giving up “not-nice” behaviors.

“Eat whatever you want for Lent,” the pope is alleged to have said in a popular social media meme, “the sacrifice is not in the stomach, but in the heart.” 

The pope, or at least the meme, continues: “They refrain from eating meat, but don’t talk to their siblings or relatives, don’t visit their parents or bother to attend to them, don’t share food with the needy…a good barbecue or beef stew won’t make you a bad person, just like a fish fillet won’t make you a saint.”

Another popular Lenten meme plays off the traditional practice of “giving something up for Lent.” It recommends that we give up complaining, pessimism, harsh judgements, worry, hatred, and the like, recommendations that appear to harbor - like the pope’s meme - a belittling of traditional fasting and abstinence.

I’m all for all of the above, but not as acts of Lenten self-denial. I’m for all of the above because it’s stuff we shouldn’t be doing in the first place. 

Fasting and abstinence during penitential religious seasons is about denying oneself that which is a normal good: like food, like sleep, like fellowship. This other stuff isn’t a good to deny oneself, it’s a bad we shouldn’t be doing at all. 

Plus there is the obvious problem that if you give this stuff up for Lent or commit to being nice to your parents for forty days, what are you going to do when Lent is over? Go back to your sinful and hurtful ways?

I know that’s not what the conjurers of these “recommendations” mean, but it’s what’s implied. And we have to be extra careful in these catechetically illiterate days not to send wrong messages via good intentions and further pave the road to hell.

Moreover, I can’t help but be suspicious that certain purveyors of these types of alternate Lenten practices are really looking for an excuse not to actually fast and abstain. Giving up food hurts. It hurts physically. And it’s supposed to. 

It’s supposed to turn us inward and bring us face to face with our fragile mortality, our human helplessness - the fact that we are, in the end, save for our immortal souls, nothing but ashes and dust, which is why Lent begins with ashes and dust and ends in a tomb.

And once you leave the traditional road of fasting and abstinence and start substituting other stuff, you open the doors for the crazy. One nationally-known Catholic cleric recommended that we give up carbon for Lent. Yah, carbon. Not out of love for God but for love of “the planet.” 

In the end, the traditional Lenten practices of prayer, fasting, and almsgiving are not about anything other than fastening ourselves to the Cross of Christ for no reason other than love for Him. All good things will follow. 

Meanwhile, let’s stop doing the bad stuff we shouldn’t be doing in the first place, not just for Lent, but forever. 

Monday, February 26, 2024

UPDATE ON FATHER RICHARDS

 (posted by frenchie)


According to a reliable source within the Archdiocese of Detroit, Fr Ron Richards has been liacized. At this time, it is not clear if Mr Ron Richards has been laicized at his request or for not abiding to his vows.

Hopefully we should be able to keep you abreast of this development. A few months back I wrote several columns to address this issue, after we had been contacted by parishioners of then Fr R Richards. 

I had noted the many psychological issues related to Mr Richards while he was de Facto leading our Archdiocese, and the troubling decisions he took in the process.

Lets pray that he can find peace and redemption

Friday, February 23, 2024

THE ROT ON THE INSIDE

 (Posted by Frenchie.)




Not long after the end of Vatican II, Pope Paul VI, made is now famous remark in 1972 : " Satan's smoke has made its way into the Temple of God through some cracks". The Pope had been made aware in 1974 of a very grave danger, after evidences were presented by two cardinals Dino Staffa and Silvio Oddi:  which alleged the infiltration of the Vatican by a cabal of undercover Free Masons. Faced by this harsh reality, in 1975 he gave the French Canadian Archbishop Gagnon a pontifical visitation, with the goal to identify and quantify the threat, in a report. The Archbishop started his task with zeal, helped by a cadre of devout clerics. His thorough investigation concluded in 1978, also known as the year of the three Popes. 

LETTER FROM STEPHEN MARTINEZ TO SPEAKER THERESE TERLAJE RE BILL NO. 162-37

February 19, 2024



Speaker Therese M. Terlaje

Guam Congress Building

Hagatna, Guam

senatorterlajeguam@gmail.com



Dear Speaker Terlaje:


Bill No. 162-37 is deceitful and a lie and needs to be rejected.


The first sentence of page two says: “It is essential to recognize that women and pregnant individuals have the right to make informed decisions about their own bodies, including the option to terminate a pregnancy.”


It is deceitful to say “terminate a pregnancy” without also adding “…and kill the living child inside her.” For the fact is, it is not just the woman’s body involved in every pregnancy. There is also another living, breathing body of a child within the pregnant woman. To allow a woman to “terminate a pregnancy” is to allow one human the right to terminate the life of another human. Yet the proposed bill ignores this fact all together. If this is the intent of the bill sponsors, to grant a woman the right to determine the fate of another human being, then the bill should be amended to clearly state this reality.


It is even more deceitful, rising to the status of a lie, to say the intent is to allow a woman to “make informed decisions”. Section 2 removes the 24 hour informational requirement, which a previous legislature found was essential to allow the woman ample time to weigh the critical decision she will make on another human beings’ life or death. But even more contrary to the stated intent of this bill, the authors spend most of their effort to eliminate vital information  which is currently required by law. They propose to strike the age and anatomical features and development of the child, but desire only to retain the risks to the mother should they choose to not abort the child. Such an imbalanced approach to this grave decision is completely contrary to the stated intent of an informed decision. Section 3 of the current law advises the mother of various medical and public assistance available to both the mother and the child, but the authors of this bill want to repeal this section in its’ entirety. And Section 4 provides information in a written form so there will be no misunderstanding about the decision a mother needs to make before going ahead with an abortion. Section 6 currently requires a written certification by both the mother and the doctor that the required information was received/provided, but, again the authors of the bill wish to remove proof that any informed consent was provided to the mother. And, many citizens and voters are curious as to why Section 7, (which outlines responsibilities for material production required in the “informed consent”) is also eliminated. Obviously, if the true goal of Bill 162-37 is to actually provide informed consent, then none of these sections should be eliminated. Maybe the authors should suggest even more informational requirements in this bill to conform to their stated intent. But that is clearly not the case.


Speaker Therese M. Terlaje

Page Two of Three



Therefore, I suggest the intention of the bill, on page two, be rewritten as follows:

“It is essential to recognize that women and pregnant women have no right to make informed decisions about their own bodies, including the option to terminate a pregnancy and kill the living child within her.” This would at least be an honest and straightforward statement of the actual intent of the bill and its’ modifications to existing law.


But, unfortunately, the deception does not end here. The second paragraph on page two says the Legislature wants “…to eliminate the risks posed by unsafe, clandestine procedures and provide a regulated environment with qualified medical professionals.” Are they saying that current abortions are basically unsafe? Are they saying more regulation is required, implying that the current regulations are inadequate? Well, I must have an incomplete version of Bill 162-37, because no where in my copy do I see language providing for more regulations to make abortions safer. If unsafe and clandestine abortions are taking place in our Territory (where abortions are still currently legal) why are there no current laws to protect our mothers and children? Perhaps you can ask the authors of this bill to provide a true solution to the unsafe/clandestine procedures they imagine happening.


The next few paragraphs discuss the importance of reproductive healthcare for all, the need for comprehensive sex education and contraceptives, the importance of personal choice, and religious freedoms. That all sounds very nice, but again, there appears to be nothing in the bill to try and achieve these goals. Just deceptive comments to eventually eliminate information crucial for a pregnant mother’s decision to have her baby killed or carried to full term.


If reproductive health care were essential, then why don’t the authors provide mandatory and free pre-natal care so that mother and baby are protected? The authors’ use of reproductive healthcare seems to imply that pregnancy is a disease of some sort, or inherently unhealthy. However, mothers of more than 300 million US citizens might not agree with this implication.


Lastly, as far as personal choice is concerned, the government has restricted a woman’s right to choose in many instances, and those restrictions have been unchallenged. 

  1. A woman cannot drink alcohol until she is 21. What happened to her right to choose?
  2. A minor woman cannot have bariatric surgery, but a 16 year old woman can have an abortion without her parents’ consent. What happened to the obese minor’s right to choose?
  3. A woman cannot drive at 50 miles per hour on Guam. What happened to her right to choose?
  4. A woman cannot drive a car at any age without wearing seatbelts. What happened to her right to choose?
  5. Smoking in public places is banned, viewing R-rated movies below a certain age is banned, voting rights…and the list of government restrictions goes on and on.



Speaker Therese M. Terlaje

Page Three of Three



So why doesn’t the government also restrict a woman’s right to choose when it comes to abortion? Especially when her decision to have an abortion gives a death sentence to an innocent child. If the “right to choose” is really an essential tenet of governance, then there are many laws and regulations that should be immediately amended or abolished. Is this really the conversation that needs to take place? Or perhaps the “my body/my choice” argument is nothing more than a deceptive lie as well.


As far as Bill 162-37 is concerned, for the many reasons stated within, I urge the Legislature to reject the bill in its entirety.


Sincerely,


/s/

Stephen Wm. Martinez

Mongmong, GU

Thursday, February 15, 2024

GUAM'S INFANT MORTALITY RATE: THE REST OF THE STORY

Printed today, 2/15/24, in the Guam Daily Post


Guam's infant mortality rate: The rest of the story

Tim Rohr LINK to Guam Daily Post (The following is copied from the Post with hyperlinks added)

Recent news that Guam’s infant mortality rate (IMR) is twice the national average brought to mind some research I had done on this issue in 2015, and at which time Guam’s IMR had been twice the national average since 2011. So the problem is not new.

My first thought was that Guam’s IMR is high due to our main medical facility (GMH) being a “forever and ever … under-resourced place,” as one doctor put it. In other words, we simply are unable to provide a normal standard of pre and postnatal care for our infants and their mothers. Note: Guam’s maternal mortality rate is also higher than the rest of the nation.

My second thought hearkens back to my 2015 research and a GMH policy titled “Comfort care for non-viable newborns.”

The policy essentially provides a “red line” between palliative care and lifesaving measures for babies born “at the threshold of viability with extremely low birth weight” or with “complex or multiple congenital anomalies incompatible with prolonged life.”

According to the policy, the “red line” is babies born at a gestational age of 25 plus/minus two weeks and weighing less than 500 grams. Meanwhile, in places which are not as “under-resourced” as Guam, an increasing number of children born prematurely are surviving and thriving at ever earlier gestational ages.

Also, the same GMH policy functionally discourages against providing lifesaving measures for babies born up to 27 weeks and weighing up to 750 grams, a gestational age the National Institute of Health states has a 70% chance of survival.

So, at least at first glance, it would seem that Guam’s IMR is another casualty of the politics of our government-run hospital as well as a general lack of service providers, specifically obstetrician-gynecologists, and the resultant lack of pre and postnatal care.

However, there appears to be more to the story.

According to the GMH head of pediatrics, “The percentage of those births that result in a newborn’s death at the hospital was relatively low.” So if these babies are not dying at birth or while still in the hospital, where are they dying?

The caption under a picture in one of the two local articles addressing this issue appears to tell “the rest of the story.”

It reads: “Officers with the Guam Police Department are seen outside a Dededo residence on the evening of Nov. 1, 2023, as they conduct an investigation involving the suspicious death of a 1-year-old child.” In short, the majority of infants who die before the age of 1 year are dying at home.

Meanwhile, a deeper dive into the numbers tells a more concerning story.

According to data published a few weeks ago in this paper, while Guam has a mean infant mortality rate of 10.7 per 1,000, deaths of CHamoru infants is 28.5 per 1,000, which is three times the mean, followed by Chuukese at 16.5, Filipino at 7.5, and whites at 2.25.

Compared to the rest of the world, the CHamoru infant mortality rate of 28.5 per 1,000 ranks CHamoru infant deaths 56th out of 237 countries, and for context, just ahead of countries like Kenya, Rwanda and Guatemala and just behind Uganda, Cambodia and Namibia.

In other words, the number of CHamoru infants dying before their first birthday ranks deep within the Third World.

Meanwhile, this shameful fact does not appear to be of any great concern to our current administration.

Given the tens if not hundreds of thousands of dollars our governor has already spent and continues to spend on securing abortionists for Guam, it appears the governor intends to reduce Guam’s infant mortality rate by getting rid of “problem” infants before they’re born.

Tim Rohr has resided in Guam since 1987. He has raised a family of 11 children, owned several businesses and most recently been active in local issues via his blog, JungleWatch.info, letters to local publications and occasional public appearances.


Tuesday, February 13, 2024

LESSONS FROM A SUPER TYPHOON AND THE INCOMING STORMS THAT SHOULD WAKE US TO THE UGLY REALITIES OF OUR SECULAR GOVERNMENT

 (Posted by Frenchie)



FOREWORD: Last year , following Super Typhoon Mawar, I started writing this essay after I was contacted by several individuals who were testifying about some egregious examples of gross lack of preparedness by our Government's agencies in charge of the protection and the relief of the victims of this catastrophe.

Unfortunately following the collapse of the power and communication grid it became de facto impossible to communicate this column in real time to our readers. While I attempted to send this to our local newspapers, none of them chose to publish it.

As I recently rediscovered it,  and re read it, I thought it was still very pertinent to our situation and decided to share it here, even at this later date.





Following the onslaught of super typhoon Mawar

For the most part, the people of Guam prepared their dwellings and their loved ones for the assault of the incoming fury of God (or as the heathen prefer to call it "Mother Nature"), with a sense of urgency and duty.

Saturday, January 20, 2024

FRANCIS' "ORGASM-GATE"

By Tim Rohr

I'm laughing, not because this is anything to laugh about. Well, not laughing really, just shaking my head with a crooked smile because there is nothing to be shocked at here. I "felt" this coming when I was ten years old. I'll explain another time. So for now, there's this:


2/14/24 Note: The video was removed by the uploader. Instead, see this article by Catholic World Report.

 

TIME TO MOVE THE DATE FOR "MARCH FOR LIFE"

By Tim Rohr


Yesterday, January 19, Guam pro-lifers held a March for Life. 

For decades, the timing of this march has approximated the date of Roe v Wade (Jan. 22, 1973) and our local march is usually in concert with the national march in Washington D.C. as well as many similar marches across the states. 

Thanks in part to this annual outpouring of public support for life in the womb, Roe was finally overturned by Dobbs (June 24, 2022).

So it's time to move on.

By continuing to march on the anniversary of Roe, pro-lifers are diminishing and even sidelining Dobbs - which was exactly what pro-lifers, for decades, had marched for.

It's time to move all marches for life to celebrate the anniversary of Dobbs so that the decision in Dobbs becomes the overwhelming drumbeat behind every abortion battle that - thanks to Dobbs - is now in the hands of every state and territory including Guam. 

Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization is the 2022 Supreme Court case that reversed Roe v. Wade and Planned Parenthood of Southeastern Pennsylvania v. Casey, the decisions that originally asserted the fundamental right to an abortion prior to the viability of the fetus. Dobbs v. Jackson states that the Constitution does not confer a right to abortion; and, the authority to regulate abortion is “returned to the people and their elected representatives.” - SOURCE