1. Margaret Sanger Was a Eugenicist to the End, By Charles A. Donovan and Robert G. Marshall, The Wall Street Journal, April 22, 2021, Pg. A19, Opinion
Planned Parenthood is finally beginning to distance itself from the eugenics legacy of founder Margaret Sanger. But the belated acknowledgment is misleading at best. In an April 17 op-ed, Alexis McGill Johnson, the organization’s president, suggests Sanger distanced herself from the eugenics movement later in her career.
In fact, Planned Parenthood’s board overlapped with that of the American Eugenics Society for decades, even after Sanger’s retirement as president in 1959.

Sanger’s ideas about racial betterment—the elimination of “human weeds,” as she called them—weren’t merely the regrettably common views of “a different time.” She went further than most.

In 2021, Planned Parenthood continues to endorse abortion based on prenatal diagnosis of disabilities. What is that if not an updated application of Sanger’s vision and a century of Planned Parenthood practice?
Acknowledging this history, even after decades of whitewashing and attacking those who wrote about Sanger’s abhorrent views, is progress. But deeds matter more than words. Planned Parenthood can begin to redress its past by ending its current embrace of eugenic abortion. The organization has been involved in lawsuits against legislation in Ohio and Indiana barring abortion of babies suspected of having Down syndrome.
Messrs. Marshall and Donovan are authors of “Blessed Are the Barren: The Social Policy of Planned Parenthood” (1991).
2. Pope meets with Lebanon’s PM-designate, urges end of crises, By Nicole Winfield, Associated Press, April 22, 2021, 8:21 AM
Pope Francis met with Lebanese Prime Minister-designate Saad Hariri on Thursday and urged all Lebanese political leaders to “urgently commit themselves to the benefit of the nation,” as the country endures a series of crises and disagreements that have prevented the formation of a government.
Francis also reaffirmed during the 30-minute audience his desire to visit Lebanon as soon as conditions permit, according to a statement from the Vatican spokesman.
3. Biden opening summit with ambitious new US climate pledge, By Ellen Knickmeyer and Christina Larson, Associated Press, April 22, 2021, 7:22 AM
President Joe Biden will open a global climate summit with a pledge to cut at least in half the climate-wrecking coal and petroleum fumes that the U.S. pumps out, a commitment he hopes will spur China and other big polluters to speed up efforts of their own.

Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris were scheduled to open the Earth Day summit from the White House East Room before world leaders, including the heads of China, Russia, India, Gulf oil states, European and Asian allies and island and coastal nations already struggling against the effects of climate change. Pope Francis will also take part.
4. Pennsylvania lawmakers move closer to letting child sex abuse victims sue, By Marc Levy, Associated Press, April 22, 2021
For the first time, prominent Republican state senators on Wednesday put their support behind legislation in Pennsylvania to change the law to allow now-adult victims of child sexual abuse to sue the perpetrators or institutions that did not prevent it when it happened years or decades ago.
The vote, 11-3, in the Senate Judiciary Committee comes after years of damning investigations into child sexual abuse by clergy in Pennsylvania’s Catholic dioceses and signals that the legislation may have enough Republican support to pass the full state Senate.
Similar legislation passed the House earlier this month and Democrats — including Gov. Tom Wolf, state Attorney General Josh Shapiro and practically all of the party’s members of the Legislature — have backed the effort.
5. Russia, China, Myanmar recommended for State Department list of religious freedom violators, By Adelle M. Banks, Religion News Service, April 21, 2021, 3:53 PM
A religious freedom watchdog is urging the State Department to name four additional countries to its list of the worst religious liberty offenders.
In its 2021 annual report, released Wednesday (April 21), the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom said India, Russia, Syria and Vietnam should be considered “countries of particular concern.” Those nations have been found to have engaged in or permitted ongoing, systematic and egregious religious freedom violations.
USCIRF also asked that 10 countries designated by the State Department in December continue to be labeled in the same way: Myanmar, China, Eritrea, Iran, Nigeria, North Korea, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, Tajikistan and Turkmenistan.
6. Colorado bill would protect gender identity and expression, By Patty Nieberg, Associated Press, April 21, 2021, 5:28 PM
Colorado lawmakers are considering a bill that would add “gender identity” and “gender expression” to anti-discrimination statutes as state lawmakers across the country are introducing bills aimed at curbing transgender rights.
There are 21 states with full nondiscrimination protections that include gender identity, according to the National Center for Transgender Equality, a nonprofit that advocates for policies that promote understanding and acceptance of transgender people.

Sixteen other states are considering some type of legislation to update nondiscrimination protections to include gender identity, according to Rodrigo Heng-Lehtinen, deputy executive director at the National Center for Transgender Equality.
7. Cupich issues final warning over ‘tactics of intimidation’ by Pfleger parish, By The Pillar, April 21, 2021
Cardinal Blase Cupich has said he will turn over the investigation of a popular local priest accused of sexual abuse to another diocese if efforts to “intimidate” members of the Archdiocese of Chicago’s Independent Review Board do not come to an end.
“Once again this week, there was an organized effort through the St. Sabina website to employ inappropriate and intimidating tactics to put pressure on the Archdiocese of Chicago and the Independent Review Board (IRB) as the case of Father Michael Pfleger Is being processed,” Cupich wrote in an April 13 letter to the parish administrator of Chicago’s St. Sabina Parish.

In February, the parish announced that it was withholding $100,000 per month from the archdiocese until Pfleger is returned to St. Sabina as pastor. The amount includes the archdiocesan income assessment on the parish of 10%, amounting to some $13,000 per month. The other withheld funds represent financial obligations to the archdiocese from the parish attached school, including property and liability insurance payments.
8. Cardinal Bo and Cardinal Sarah among speakers at Budapest International Eucharistic Congress, By Courtney Mares, Catholic News Agency, April 21, 2021, 12:00 PM
More than 25 cardinals and bishops will take part in the International Eucharistic Congress in Budapest, which will include Cardinal Charles Maung Bo and Cardinal Robert Sarah among its speakers.
The International Eucharistic Congress, a celebration of the Real Presence of Jesus Christ in the Eucharist with participants from across the world, will take place in the Hungarian capital Sept. 5-12.
Bo is the archbishop of Yangon, the former capital city of Burma, while Sarah served as prefect of the Vatican Congregation for Divine Worship from 2014 until his retirement in February this year.
9. U.S. religious freedom commission: some countries used pandemic to target religious minorities, By Catholic News Agency, April 21, 2021, 3:00 PM
Some countries used the COVID-19 pandemic to target religious minorities last year, a federal commission revealed on Wednesday.
The U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF), a bipartisan federal commission, released its 2021 Annual Report on Wednesday. Among its findings, USCIRF said that some governments targeted religious minorities through misinformation campaigns or with disproportionate restrictions during the pandemic.
USCIRF Chair Gayle Manchin, who is also the wife of Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.), told reporters on a Wednesday press call that “in many cases, these [public health] measures complied with international human rights standards,” but in some places they did not.
10. Pope renews call for debt forgiveness to poor countries, By Junno Arocho Esteves, Catholic News Service, April 21, 2021
Pope Francis renewed his appeal to the international community to forgive the debt of poor countries whose financial burdens have worsened due to the coronavirus pandemic.
In a message sent April 21 to participants at the Ibero-American Summit, the pope said debt forgiveness “is a gesture that will help people to develop and to have access to vaccines, health, education and employment.”
“Such a gesture must be accompanied by the implementation of sound economic policies and good governance that reaches the poorest,” he said.

TCA Media Monitoring provides a snapshot from national newspapers and major Catholic press outlets of coverage regarding significant Catholic Church news and current issues with which the Catholic Church is traditionally or prominently engaged. The opinions and views expressed in the articles do not necessarily reflect the views of The Catholic Association.
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