Volume > Issue > The News You May Have Missed: March 2023

The News You May Have Missed: March 2023

American Idol

A golden statue has been installed on the roof of the Appellate Division Courthouse of New York State as part of an exhibit by artist Shahzia Sikander. Titled NOW, the eight-foot figure represents the late U.S. Supreme Court Justice and pro-abortion heroine Ruth Bader Ginsburg and, in Sikander’s words, marks the “urgent and necessary cultural reckoning underway as New York reconsiders traditional representations of power in public spaces and recasts civic structures to better reflect 21st-century social mores” (Daily Wire, Jan. 25). NOW depicts a woman with her hair braided into long spirals like ram’s horns and web-like protrusions at each arm, wearing a pleated judge’s collar and standing on a pink lotus flower. Sikander calls the figure “a fierce woman and a form of resistance.” Critics have pointed out the statue’s pagan and even demonic motifs and its overt idolization of abortion. “New York has put an androgynous baphomet with tentacles digging into its own torso on top of the courthouse in order to ‘better reflect 21st-century social mores,’” tweeted Anglican theologian Brandon Meeks. “Sounds about right.”

 

Prayercrime

A Catholic woman was arrested for praying silently outside an abortion clinic in England. A policeman confronted Isabel Vaughan-Spruce, director of March for Life UK, as she was standing near the BPAS Robert Clinic in Kings Norton, Birmingham. “What are you here for today?” he asked. “Physically, I’m just standing here,” Vaughan-Spruce replied. “Are you here as part of a protest? Are you praying?” the officer queried. She denied she was protesting, saying, “I might be praying in my head, but not out loud.” The officer then arrested her on suspicion of failing to comply with the Public Spaces Protection Order, which makes it illegal to engage in acts of approval or disapproval, including prayer and protest, outside abortion clinics. Those guilty of breaching the “buffer zone” to intimidate, threaten, or persuade women not to have an abortion face a fine or six months’ imprisonment (Daily Mail, Dec. 24).

 

Condomnation

Condoms are now free in French pharmacies for everyone younger than 26 as part of the government’s efforts to curb sexually transmitted diseases (Fox News, Jan. 2). The measure was originally limited to French citizens between the ages of 18 and 25 but was expanded to include minors. France has also made “emergency contraception” free for all women, and citizens 26 and older can be reimbursed for condom purchases with a prescription from a doctor in what French President Emmanuel Macron has called a “prevention revolution.” France is following the lead of several other European countries that have made contraceptives free for women and girls up to age 25. Contraception is free in the United Kingdom, while Spain funds dozens of birth-control methods.

 

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