Friday, January 30, 2009

Johannesburg archbishop slams "biological colonialism"

Johannesburg Archbishop Buti Joseph Tlhagale has attacked proposed legislation that will allow the harvesting of eggs from African women for investigation purposes in other countries as "biological colonialism".

Archbishop Thagale underlined this in his opening address at the plenary assembly of the Southern African Catholic Bishops' Conference, Zenit reports.

Among other things, the archbishop called attention to the "global ethic" and its challenge to churches. He described it as "the global postmodern ethic that puts great value on differences," and "maintains that reality is a social construct, that truth is what you make of it."

With this lack of objective truth, Archbishop Tlhagale noted, "the authority of the Word of God has been turned on its head."

He added: "God himself has been knocked off the pedestal. [...] Natural law is seen as an integral part of ancient explanations or mythologies. A whole new vocabulary and concepts have been produced by the postmodern global ethic."

He said that in this world view, the "right to choose" is promoted as the fundamental norm. As a consequence, he said: "One can freely choose bisexuality, homosexuality, lesbianism, heterosexuality. Children now have the right to choose abortion irrespective of their parent's beliefs. They too have equal rights."

Archbishop Tlhagale further warned his listeners of continuing attempts to legalise abortion and in vitro fertilisation in African countries, with the African Union's Maputo Protocol and the UN Convention on the Elimination of all Forms of Discrimination Against Women.

Among his main concerns, he said: "Such legislation will make it possible to poach ovarian human eggs from African women. Harvesting ovarian human eggs in Africa will help meet the needs of embryonic stem cell research in industrialised countries.

"It is illegal to use British eggs in Great Britain. Biological colonialism is on our doorstep."

"Do Church leaders have a say in these complex moral issues of the day or are we simply left to the mercy of unscrupulous campaigners?"Archbishop Tlhagale asked in conclusion.

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(Source: CTHN)