LIFEalerts – Pornography


USA – Over half of sex trafficking recruitment cases occurred on Facebook

According to the Human Trafficking Institute’s 2020 Federal Human Trafficking Report, the majority of online recruitment (65%) in active sex trafficking cases in the U.S. occurred on Facebook. Data from the last two decades showed that 30% of all victims, identified in federal sex trafficking cases since 2000, were recruited online. Instagram and Snapchat were the most frequently cited platforms after Facebook for recruiting child victims in 2020. For adult victims, the next-most cited were WeChat and Instagram. The majority of victims in active sex trafficking cases in 2020 were targeted with a fraudulent job offer, the report notes, followed by feigned romance. The data is based on 602 victims. More

India – Multiple Child Pornography cases on Twitter Registered in India

The Delhi Police has registered a case against Twitter on a complaint by the National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR) for allegedly allowing access to child sexual abuse material on the social media platform. Keswani alleged that Twitter, “through a conspiracy”, distorted the country’s identity and hurt their sentiments. Keswani initiate legal action against the social media giant for putting up this distortion. Notably, the platform has lost its legal shield in India, becoming liable for users posting any unlawful content. The government has confronted the US digital giant over deliberate defiance and failure to comply with the country’s new IT rules, despite repeated reminders. More

USA – Cognitive Processes Related to Problematic Pornography Use

A study published in Science Direct explained the consequences of problematic pornography use (PPU). Excessive time and effort spent on watching and searching for pornography, impaired self-control over pornography use, failure to fulfil family, social, or work responsibilities, persistence in these sexual behaviours regardless of consequences all characterizes PPU. Twenty-one experimental studies and from six countries were included in this review. The study reported:

Findings from all five studies which tested for “attentional bias” showed that individuals with PPU or greater pornography consumption are more likely to show attentional bias toward sexual stimuli. This is significant because attentional bias is a known indicator of addiction. PPU relates to impaired “inhibitory control” which plays a “central role” in regulating human behaviour. It is especially critical in managing what we call “self-control”. Article, Study.

Germany – Germany Is About to Block One of the Biggest Porn Sites

German Child Protection Regulators are on the verge of blocking one of the world’s largest pornographic websites, xHamster, because they refuse to introduce age checks. Legislators around the world—including in Canada, France, the UK, and some US states—are looking to introduce more measures aimed at stopping children from accessing adult material online. Germany is also on the verge of taking legal action against three other sites, YouPorn, Pornhub, and MyDirtyHobby, for the same reason. All these sites are owned by MindGeek. In reality this means issuing a blocking order to Germany’s biggest web providers—including Vodafone, Deutsche Telekom, O2, and 1&1—demanding that they block the website for people trying to access it in Germany. More

Philippines – Activists are trying to change law that 12-year-olds can consent to sex

Child sexual abuse is rampant in the Philippines, which activists say is partly driven by the country’s law regarding the age at which girls can legally consent to sex, at just 12 years old. Opponents of the law say children that age are incapable of giving consent. The law protects predators, because they can claim victims consented. The low age of consent contributes to what international rights organizations have described as high levels of sex trafficking and teenage pregnancy in the Philippines. Raising the age is just one step. The bill includes more provisions to strengthen enforcement, improve the investigation and legal process, and provide more support and confidentiality for victims of sexual exploitation and abuse. More

LIFEalerts – Abortion


World – Abortion by telehealth increases risks of complications for women

England, Scotland, and Wales have allowed ‘at-home’ abortions during the coronavirus pandemic and a similar policy is to be implemented in Northern Ireland. Recent reports and request for data documents show there are major concerns with this policy. A recent Sky News documentary on the scheme stated, “5% of women who have at-home abortions will suffer complications that may need follow-up treatment or surgery”. Such complications present an even greater threat to women in rural areas where access to emergency healthcare is more challenging. In England, 86% of women expressed concern about the risk abortion coercion, and 83% were concerned about abortion pills being falsely obtained for another person. Similar polling results manifested in Scotland. Majority of GPs remain anxious about it as well. More

USA – Double-talk on abortion helps no one

Dr Christina Francis, a practising obstetrician-gynaecologist in association with of the American Association of Pro-Life OB/GYNs, calls the pro-abortion lobby’s, Women’s Health Protection Act, doublespeak that endangers women and children. The Act comes as a response to the Supreme Court’s announcement of taking up a case that challenges the core tenets of Roe v. Wade. Dr Francis explains that even with advancements in medical science, preterm birth continues to plague modern society, resulting in more than 3 million infant deaths worldwide each year. And abortions are driving that number up. Preterm birth risk increases by 30% for women who previously had surgical abortions and if they had two the risk increases nearly 90%.

According to the Guttmacher Institute, the overwhelming majority of abortions in the U.S. are performed for socioeconomic and not medical reasons. Even so, pro-choice advocates pretend that abortion and women’s health are one and the same. They are not, and in fact, there are thousands of cases each year of abortions causing lasting damage to a woman’s health. The Women’s Health Protection Act seeks to eliminate nearly all state laws regulating abortion. Dr Francis calls for honesty regarding the health risks associated with abortion and for abortion advocates to stop hiding behind doublespeak, like “women’s health” or “reproductive choice,” that is doing active harm to both women and children. More

Spain – Medical Council rejects abortion amendment law

The General Council of Official Medical Colleges (CGCOM) responded to proposed changes to Spain’s abortion law, which would in effect force physicians to perform abortions and nullify conscientious objection. The medical body said it is illegal and unjust to force the conscience of physicians in order to expand physician availability on abortions in all communities. This came two weeks after the European Parliament adopted a report seeking to redefine conscientious objection as a “denial of medical care.” More

UK – Experts call for policy changes in abortion

In the UK current abortion policy allows abortion up to 24 weeks. A group of experts in a new book called “Missing Millions” are calling for changes to the current abortion policy citing evidence that show the unborn baby can feel pain from as early as 12 weeks. Dr. Maureen Condic, Ph.D., an associate professor of Neurobiology and Anatomy at the University of Utah, testified before Congress concerning fetal pain, and explained that the spinal reflex is the “neural circuitry responsible for the most primitive response to pain.” By 12-18 weeks, the preborn child is “capable of mature pain perception,” she explained. Foetologist Albert Iiley of the University of Auckland confirmed this, saying that the spinal reflexes are developed enough for the preborn baby to feel pain just 56 days — eight weeks — after fertilization. As the facts about fetal pain grow, it is crucial to start re-examining outdated policies that don’t align with current research and to begin passing laws that prohibit abortion — not only due to pain, but to protect a baby’s life at all stages of development. More

LIFEalerts – Euthanasia


Canada – Medical Organisations: euthanasia will provide not prevent suicide.

Several countries have permitted euthanasia for patients with psychiatric illness opening the door to provide suicide rather than prevent it. The American Medical Association repeatedly concluded that euthanasia practices are “fundamentally incompatible with the physician’s role as a healer,” and the World Medical Association is firmly opposed to euthanasia. Experts in Canadian law and medicine wrote: Bill C-7 will allow physicians to end the life of people with disabilities or chronic illnesses at their request and will require the system to ensure it happens even when physicians are convinced, based on their expert knowledge, that medicine offers options and even when the patient may have years or decades to live with a good quality of life if other options are explored and tried first. More

USA – Bioethicists look for different ways to eliminate incapacitated people

Two prominent bioethicists propose the implantation of a time-release suicide device that will cause future death at the time of the patient’s choosing. This is to eliminate people diagnosed with dementia when they become incapacitated. Belgium and the Netherlands permit advance orders to be euthanized. Another proposal gaining traction in bioethics would force caregivers to starve patients to death. This new idea was published in the Hastings Center Report — the world’s most prominent bioethics journal. This device is called an “advance directive implant, or ADI”. The ADI would require extensive engineering, would be computerized subdermal implant containing a lethal dose of a medication or combination of medications. Release of lethal dose would occur rapidly after a predetermined interval or after some specific event had occurred. The ADI would likely require a long-lasting battery, computerized control, and a pump or microfluidic mechanism. More

Netherlands – Assisted suicide now available without doctor intervention!

Recently a 28-year-old man was arrested and charged for selling a suicide drug to at least six people for 20 euros over the internet. Some of his clients were young people police said. According to police, the man also had links to Cooperatie Laatste Wil (CLW) (Last Wish Cooperative), a euthanasia group that promotes “assisted suicide without the intervention of doctors”. Similar groups operate under the radar in other countries. A long feature article in the popular newspaper de Volkskrant about the death of a 28-year-old woman named Marjolein in September 2020. She had a history of depression and mental instability. She also bought the suicide drug from and agent of CLW. She changed her mind almost immediately, but efforts to rescue her failed. Jos van Wijk, chairman of the CLW, indignantly rejected the family’s accusations of improper conduct saying they adhere to the rules of law. This is another example of how things get out of hand once euthanasia is legalized in a country. More

LIFEalerts – LGBTQ+ Issues

LGBTQ+ Issues

USA – 17 states defend Arkansas’ ban on child ‘sex changes’

Seventeen states are backing an Arkansas law that bans experimental, life-threatening transgender procedures for children and adolescents. A coalition of state attorneys general, led by Alabama Attorney General Steve Marshall, filed an amicus brief last week in the U.S. District Court. Arkansas lawmakers enacted the Save Adolescents from Experimentation (SAFE) Act in April, prohibiting medical professionals from providing puberty blockers, cross-sex hormones, or “sex change” surgeries to gender-confused minors. The far-left nonprofit American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) sued Arkansas the following month to block the law. The brief describes the concern about the surge in recent years of children suffering from gender dysphoria and other forms of gender-related psychological distress.

The question is how to help theses children. The Republican attorneys general noted that while the vast majority of minors grow out of gender dysphoria naturally, research indicates that virtually all those who start puberty blockers advance to cross-sex hormones and other irreversible interventions, like mutilating surgeries.  Complications from the practices include “infertility, loss of sexual function, increased risk of heart attacks and strokes, bone-density problems, risk of altered brain development, social risks from delayed puberty, and mental health concerns,” the amicus brief said.  The brief also pointed to recent decisions by hospitals in United Kingdom, Finland, and Sweden to side-line transgender drugs and surgeries for minors, amid growing awareness of the lack of evidence for the practices. 

Council for Choices in Healthcare in Finland acknowledged, “As far as minors are concerned, there are no medical treatment[s] that can be considered evidence-based,” They stressed that a minor subjected to “gender transitioning” must understand “the reality of a lifelong commitment to medical therapy” and “the permanence of the effects” of the procedures. “Although patients may experience regret, after reassignment treatments, there is no going back to the non-reassigned body and its normal functions.” “There is very little reason to think that a child in early adolescence can properly weigh these lifetime risks,” They highlighted the “heart-breaking” stories of detransitioners – individuals who come to regret their “transitions” – like testimony included in a lawsuit that led the U.K.’s High Court of Justice to ban transgender drugs for most minors last year. More

USA – Questionable “evidence” used to restrict professional therapy

The Williams Institute’s Generations Survey is often cited as a basis for legal prohibitions on therapies that allow clients to pursue a self-determined goal to explore their potential for change in unwanted same-sex attractions, behaviours, and gender identities. A closer look at the presented “evidence” in their survey shows questionable results. For one, the survey is but a pilot study with serious methodological limitations and simply cannot be generalized beyond their samples. Secondly, they quote the American Psychological Association techniques for conversion therapy, used in the 1960’s and 1970’s. The aversion treatments of that time included inducing nausea, vomiting, or paralysis; providing electric shocks; or having the individual snap an elastic band around the wrist when the individual became aroused to same-sex erotic images or thoughts. These methods have not been used for decades!

Thirdly, 72.5% of the LGBT participants were deemed ineligible for inclusion in the survey. It is simply not reasonable for such a high level of participant exclusion to have occurred solely because of the inclusion criteria described. Moreover, having nearly half of the eligible participants not finish the survey raises serious questions about the possibility of non-random, systematic differences between completer and non-completers that might affect the results and seriously limit the researchers’ ability to generalize their findings. This briefly summarizes some key errors in the survey but a more in-depth analysis can be examined in the link below. More

South Africa – High School refused female to wear male uniform

Strand High School, in the Western Cape, made headlines this week when it refused a 16-year old biological female learner who identifies as a transgender male (only available in Afrikaans), to wear the male school uniform. The school also refused the learner to use the male bathroom facilities at the school. In response, the Western Cape Education Department informed the public that they are aware of the matter and they are in discussion with the school. Bronagh Hammond of the Western Cape Education Department explained that the situation crosses borders because never before had there been any guidelines or policy in the country to show schools for example how to support transgender students. More

USA – Transgender Survey misrepresented to ban talk therapy

Gaining rapid traction in political and academic circles is the 2015 U.S. Transgender Survey, which the Williams Institute study derived their data from. This survey is used to assert harms from change-allowing talk therapies are widespread and sufficient for professional and religious engagement in such efforts to be deemed a serious health hazard. The survey attempts to link gender identity change efforts (GICE) to psychological distress and are now appearing in professional journals. Errors in the survey include the following:

  1. For any definitive statement to be made regarding cause and effect (change efforts causing psychological distress), longitudinal data is necessary. This survey was a cross sectional meaning data collected from respondents where done only once at one point in time therefore rendering an obvious limitation.
  2. Although this survey employed a multitude of people in their outreach, there is a concern of “narrowness of inbreeding” whereby people who know people who know others alike participate in the same survey. For example excluding former transgender persons. The survey is thus seriously limited by it’s reliance on respondents who identify as transgender, rather than all persons with a history of gender dysphoria.

More detailed analysis of the report (Page 6) can be found by clicking the link below. More

USA – Why rush children into surgical transgender intervention

Despite countless transgender regret stories that never make their way to mainstream media, and despite the fact that children are not mature or developed enough to understand the long term impact of transgender surgery on their lives, doctors are still split on this issue of whether a child should be permitted to undergo life altering surgery or not. According to an article in the Journal of Medical Ethics, governments should now exclude parents who oppose the hormonal and surgical transformation of their children. Dr Michelle Cretella of American College of Pediatricians gave a presentation discussing the medical implications and impact of transgender lifestyle among other things in which she highlights the lifelong side effects such children will have to put up with. Article, Presentation.

South Africa – DA MP published intention to ban talk therapy for minors

Recently, a Democratic Alliance (DA) Member of Parliament (MP) published her intention to introduce a bill that would amend the current Children’s Act so as to include prohibiting “conversion therapy” in children (which is not defined other than saying it is a “pseudo-science approach to ‘curing’ children of homosexuality”). The bill is open for public comment until 4 August 2021 and comments can be emailed to [email protected] . It is important to take note that this is a mere intention to introduce a bill and not yet a bill itself. Similar bills have gone around the USA persuading policy makers that conversion therapy is harmful and ineffective but they have based these claims on methods used in the 1960’s and 1970’s. These methods are no longer used today. Talk therapy is the method used. Just as any other therapy offered today, success depends on the willingness and participation of the patient. More

Uganda – Journalist goes after hospital for offering change therapy

A receptionist at an HIV clinic for marginalised and ‘most at risk’ populations, including homosexual people, is harassed because she offered change therapy to an undercover reporter’s 17-year-old homosexual brother. Emphasis on the fact that all she did was make the offer, she did not force or insult anyone. “Whoever wants to quit homosexuality, we connect them,” she said – to external counsellors. It is also noteworthy that she is a receptionist at a clinic for ‘most at risk’ people, so her offer stems from compassion. The homosexual population is known to be at higher risk for various Sexually Transmitted Infections and this receptionist probably witnesses heart-breaking incidents regularly and felt she wanted to make a difference. OpenDemocracy journalists on the other hand feel it necessary to make a mountain out of a mole heap. Article, Medical Publication of health issues LGBT population faces.

LIFEalerts – Medical Ethics

Medical Ethics

China – Tests the theory of male pregnancy

Recently, a team of scientists in China at the Naval Medical University in Shanghai tried to create a model to test the hypothesis that you could get a male rat to deliver babies. They took a male and a female rat and literally joined their blood circulation to get female hormones into the male bloodstream. Then they transplanted the uterus of the female rat into the male rat. Embryos were transferred from the female that they had created in vitro and the male gave birth to 10 rat cubs, and they seemed normal. It’s obvious that this model will not be used in humans since you would have all kinds of immunologic and other problems. Medscape, Study.

UK – WHO declares human genome editing as safe

The World Health Organization (WHO) is offering a pathway to establish human genome editing as a safe, effective and ethical tool for public health. WHO Director-General explained that “Human genome editing has the potential to advance our ability to treat and cure disease, but the full impact will only be realized if we deploy it for the benefit of all people, instead of fuelling more health inequity between and within countries,”. Doctors For Life’s (DFL) official stance on genome editing is that we see no issue in genome editing as a therapeutic intervention however, when it comes to using this tool for enhancing humans ability to exceed normal human capabilities, DFL disagrees at this point. More

UK – Devices that help people control electronics with their mind becomes reality

Researchers from Imperial College London have reviewed commercial brain-computer interface (BCI) devices in the journal APL Bioengineering. The most promising is electroencephalography (EEG), a method for monitoring the brain noninvasively through its electrical activity. However, these devices raise social, ethical, and legal concerns. These devices allow a person to control electronics, which is useful for medical patients who need help controlling wheelchairs, but it may also change the way the brain functions. “For some of these patients, these devices become such an integrated part of themselves that they refuse to have them removed at the end of the clinical trial,” said one of the authors. “It has become increasingly evident that neurotechnologies have the potential to profoundly shape our own human experience and sense of self.” Other concerns are what if companies own the neural data? Since it is considered to be the most intimate and private information that could be associated with any given user it is worrisome said another author. More

LIFEalerts – Substance Abuse

Substance Abuse

USA – UN World Drug Report: Ban Marijuana Advertising & THC potency caps

Earlier this month (June) the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) released the latest edition of the annual World Drug Report, which highlighted the fact that while use of marijuana among young people has increased to levels not seen since the early nineties, the perception of harm from use among the same demographic is at a historic low. The report also called for a global ban on marijuana advertising and the implementation of a cap on THC potency in marijuana products where the marijuana industry has expanded. According to the report, “a comprehensive ban on advertising, promoting, and sponsoring marijuana would ensure that public health interests prevail over business interests… The measures could work in a way similar to the provisions of The Who Framework Convention on Tobacco Control.” More

Europe – Aims for alcohol- and tobacco-free Europe

The European Commission plans to contemplate a tobacco free generation by 2040 with stricter regulation of e-cigarettes, heated tobacco products, as well as increasing taxes on alcohol, curbing its promotion, and restricting sales. Since 90% of lung cancers can be avoided without tobacco use, the Commission is aiming to have fewer than 5% of EU citizens using tobacco in 20 years. The EU particularly aims to protect young people from taking up smoking. Alcohol, which accounts for more than 15% of cancer-attributable deaths in men and 30% in women, the Commission proposed to stop stimulating consumption of alcohol via the EU promotion programme for agricultural products. More

South Africa – School study shows concerning HPV prevalence

A new study, done by the National Health Laboratory Services and Nelson Mandela Academic Hospital, in two Eastern Cape schools shows more than three-quarters of teenage girls were found to have the human papillomavirus (HPV). According to the study, published in the PLOS One, young girls who consumed alcohol were almost three times more likely to have HPV infections compared with their non-drinking counterparts. The current prevalence was higher than the 68% HPV prevalence among HIV-negative young women (aged 16- 24) in the Western Cape, and the 65% reported in Gauteng. Research was conducted only in two communities, which do not represent the population of the Eastern Cape, “and cannot be generalised”. More

USA – Olympic trials suspend champion for traces of THC

Earlier this July, track and field made front-page news everywhere when U.S. 100m champion Sha’Carri Richardson was given a 30-day suspension after testing positive for THC, a substance found in marijuana, at the U.S. Olympic trials. The length of her suspension meant that Richardson, a gold medal favourite in Tokyo, would miss the Olympic Games. Fans everywhere were outraged, and several voices in the track and field world demanded to know why the drug, which is now legal in several countries and states, is still on the banned list.

The World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) published a paper in the journal Sports Medicine explaining that  marijuana 1) poses a health risk to athletes. 2) has the potential to enhance performance. 3) Violates the “spirit of sport”. When athletes use cannabis in competition, they potentially endanger themselves and others because of increased risk-taking, slower reaction times and poor executive function or decision-making. Use of illicit drugs that are harmful to health and that may have performance-enhancing properties is not consistent with the athlete as a role model for young people around the world. More

Mozambique – Government seeks to remove Cannabis Energy Drink

Although the energy drink called Cannabis Energy Drink contains no marijuana and has no hallucinogenic properties, Mozambique’s tax authorities want the drink removed from the Mozambican market. Officials are concerned it would encourage the consumption of illegal narcotics in the country. The energy drink has an image of a Cannabis sativa leaf, which allegedly violates the country’s anti-drug legislation. It is not clear where ‘Cannabis Energy Drink’ is produced, although its official website lists the Netherlands as the host country. Anyone who understands marketing techniques will realize that the concern of these officials are not baseless at all and that the mere name and image of marijuana on the energy drink certainly does have the effect of normalising and encouraging a particular idea and would spark curiosity. More

USA – New App designed to help recovering addicts manage triggers

Rimrock Foundaiton and Substance Abuse Connect Coalition in Billings, along with New Jersey-based behavioral science tech company, GoMo Health, have seen good anecdotal results after utilizing a text messaging app designed to interrupt relapse behavior in people with substance use disorders. The app provides support services available 24hours seven days a week so that such people do not have to deal with those triggers alone. The program is called recovery pathways and is a response initiative to help with the out of control substance use within communities. More

USA – New research shows correlation between drug use and increased violence

Specialists in Central Illinois share there is a correlation between substance abuse and the increase in violence. Whether it is selling the substance, using a substance and money has been driving factors. It’s a trend being seen across the united states. Studies show that drug use is strongly linked to gun violence, especially when illegal drug sales are involved. “When we think about people who use substances, they’re impulsive, they’re not in the right mind,” Outpatient Clinical Supervisor for The Gateway Foundation’s Drug and Alcohol Rehabilitation Center, Mercedes Kent said. 90% of individuals who take their own life meet the criteria for one or more diagnosable conditions, including substance abuse according to studies done on suicide and prevention. More

LIFEalerts – Sexual Exploitation

Sexual Exploitation

Germany – Registered sex workers drop sharply in pandemic

The number of people registered as sex workers with German authorities declined sharply last year as coronavirus restrictions shut brothels for months. Legislation in 2002 legalized and regulated prostitution in Germany, giving sex workers social benefits, and they are now obliged to register. But brothels have been closed for much of the time since the covid-19 pandemic hit in March 2020 as part of wider lockdowns.  At the end of last year, 24,940 prostitutes were officially registered with authorities, the Federal Statistical Office said. That was down from some 40,400 a year earlier — a 38% drop. This is the reality if you want to legalize prostitution. We learn from countries who tried it, it does not work. More

Germany – Brothel converted into test centre

Prostitutes in Germany were trained up to become Covid testers after their brothel closed down due to lockdown restrictions and then subsequently turned into a test center. Brothels closed down and the sale of sex has been banned across Germany due to the coronavirus, which has forced many prostitutes into poverty and danger. Some prostitutes have admitted that they have had no choice but to flout the restrictions. Regarding the free-of-charge examinations, they said; ‘We want to make a contribution to the fight against the pandemic and to do something good for the people.’ Doctors For Life International is impressed with news like this. More

USA – Detective finds evidence of sex trafficking on OnlyFans

A Detective from Texas, one of the country’s most elite human trafficking investigators, shared with viewers how OnlyFans shows evidence of sex trafficking activity. He has participated in arresting over 460 sex buyers, 149 individuals for human trafficking and related offenses, which led to the identification of 260 trafficking victims.   During the pandemic, OnlyFans has seen exponential growth. Last year, it claimed to have more than 30 million registered users and more than 450,000 creators. Palmbach said some of the ways to stop the potential threat of OnlyFans is through banking, financing, working with law enforcement by reporting things that are witnessed and searching for potential dangers in other social media platforms. More

LIFEalerts – Pornography


World – Controversial Sexuality Education Rejected at World Health Assembly

Multiple UN Member States have recently rejected a paragraph calling for highly controversial “Comprehensive Sexuality Education” (CSE) at a World Health Assembly (WHA) resolution on ending violence against children. This means that UN documents will no longer accept CSE moving forward. CSE goes far beyond sex education and is one of the most controversial terms at the UN, never having achieved consensus because of its radical content. CSE sexualizes children and mainstreams diverse sexual and gender identities among other things, and used by sexual rights activists to change the sexual and gender norms of society forcing them to embrace abortion, promiscuity, and transgenderism.  More

USA – Pornography producer sentenced to 20 years for sex trafficking

A pornography producer for GirlsDoPorn, was sentenced to 20 years in prison for “Sex Trafficking by Force, Fraud and Coercion” along with four others who run the company together. Advocates for sex trafficking survivors applauded the judge in the case for listening to the GirlsDoPorn survivors who courageously spoke at the sentencing hearing. The entire pornography industry – that is built on abuse, exploitation, and coercion – is hereby put on notice that exploitation will not stand. GirlsDoPorn placed ads for “modelling jobs” that would pay $5,000 but instead pressured women into signing documents without a chance to read them thoroughly, and were threatened with legal action or “outing” if they did not “perform” in a sex video. More

UK – Porn fuelling sexual harassment in schools

Children’s easy access to violent online pornography is fuelling sexual harassment in schools, and shaping pupils’ expectations of relationships and ‘normal’ behaviour. Sexual harassment of girls has become normalised in schools, and boys collect nude images of them like a card game Dame Rachel de Souza urged the Government to introduce age-verification checks on websites to prevent children from accessing pornography. She amended that in the real world, adults wouldn’t leave something dangerous or inappropriate lying around for children to stumble upon – why should the internet be different?” Former Sunday Times editorial director Eleanor Mills highlighted that the issue became worse in lockdown and we now have a generation of traumatised young women and emotionally deadened young men. More

Texas – Lawmaker Call for Investigation into Pornhub for Child Pornography

State Rep. Matt Krause has called for Texas attorney general and Department of Public Safety (DPS) to investigate Pornhub and MindGeek for potential involvement in sex crimes and to hold them accountable to the fullest extent of the law. Krause did this to protect vulnerable and victimized adults and children from this predatory industry that is fuelling deadly and dangerous human trafficking. MindGeek, the parent company of Pornhub, is currently the subject of several lawsuits, by women who claim it profits from videos of rape, underage sex, trafficking, and other non-consensual content. MindGeek is the most dominant online pornography company and the largest human trafficking ventures in the world, as claimed by one of the complainants. More

LIFEalerts – Substance Abuse

Substance Abuse

Colorado – Breaking News: Colorado passes bill to overhaul marijuana industry

Recently, Colorado State Assembly has overwhelmingly passed a bill to establish a scientific review council to analyze the available research on the physical and mental health effects related to the use of high potency marijuana. The bill must face one more vote prior to being sent to Governor Jared Polis, who has signaled that he will sign the bill. The bill seeks to implement much-needed public health guardrails and promote public health, reigning in a marijuana industry that has been allowed to run free. The bill will prohibit “medical” marijuana advertising directed to those aged 18-20 and requires medical and retail marijuana concentrate advertising to include a warning regarding the risks of “medical” marijuana concentrate overconsumption. More

USA – New study found young adults not successful using marijuana as harm reduction

A small descriptive pilot study involving 26 adolescents found that using marijuana as a harm reduction strategy was unsuccessful because using marijuana enhanced cravings for opiates and promoted relapse in each case.  During the past several years, interest in the possible role of marijuana as a therapeutic agent to treat opioid use disorder has escalated. Recent studies present a very mixed picture of the possible role of cannabis in the self-treatment of opioid use disorders. In this sample, all were motivated by the desire to get high and by the belief that smoking marijuana would help them never return to opiate use. During the period that they smoked marijuana, they did not use other drugs. All said that smoking marijuana increased their cravings and urges for opiates, and within one day to six weeks, they returned to opiate use. More, Study.

USA – Federal study shows link between marijuana use and suicide in young adults

A new study by the federal government shows a link between marijuana use and suicide in young adults. The study by the National Institute on Drug Abuse, which analyzed data from more than 280,000 people ages 18 to 35, suggests marijuana users thought about suicide, planned suicide or attempted it more often than people who don’t use marijuana. The findings come as marijuana usage increases across the country and as more states like Michigan legalize it for recreational use. While the researchers aren’t saying that marijuana is causing suicidal thoughts or actions, they are pointing out that people who use pot are more prone to suicidal thoughts or actions. The study is published online in JAMA Network Open the journal of the American Medical Association. More, Online publication.

UK – The future of nicotine

Earlier this month the Global Forum on Nicotine discussed the future of nicotine aiming to develop “safer” nicotine use and tobacco harm reduction strategies. The principle of this strategy rests on the fact that smokers who want to quit fail to succeed and as a result, alternatives have emerged such as electronic cigarettes and heated tobacco. The World Health Organization and other national regulators are strong opponents to these alternatives and argue that they are not a 100% reliable in fighting tobacco related diseases efficiently and accuse them of being interested in making profit. More

LIFEalerts – LGBTQ+ Issues

LGBTQ+ Issues

Sweden – Swedish Hospital bans experimental drugs used on transgender minors

The most politically and socially liberal countries in the world has nonetheless issued new guidelines on how to care for gender dysphoric minors and their mental, emotional, and physical well-being under age 16. The guidelines contradict many assertions of the transgender lobby, which encourage parents and children to accept, without hesitation, treating their children with cross-sex hormones and puberty blockers as normal and healthy treatment. Astrid Lindgren’s Children’s Hospital—an arm of the one of the most renowned hospitals in Sweden, the Karolinska University Hospital has reported that the current treatment option for transgender children are “potentially fraught with extensive and irreversible adverse consequences, such as cardiovascular disease, osteoporosis, infertility, increased cancer risk, and thrombosis.”

On 1st December 2020, the UK High Court in the Keira Bell case ruled that it was “highly unlikely, if at all possible, for an individual under the age of 16 to give informed consent to this treatment.” There were also “overarching problems associated with puberty-blocking treatment,” This move make Sweden the first country to deviate from World Professional Association for Transgender Health guidance, which continues to promote puberty blockers and cross-sex hormones on children under age 16. In April 2021, Arkansas became the first state to ban cross-sex hormones and puberty blockers for minors. Other states should follow suit. More

USA – New Research may upend efforts to ban change therapy

Currently Sexual Orientation Change Efforts (SOCE) provided by licensed therapists have been legally prohibited for minors in 20 states and numerous municipalities in the United States. Efforts to expand the scope of these bans to include adult consumers and non-licensed religious providers are currently underway.

The Universally flawed studies by the psychology profession, conducted over the last couple of decades which have led to overwhelming negative attitudes toward SOCE share a universal commonality: They draw their data exclusively from LGBT-identifying populations. In fact, LGBT-identity is among the “inclusion criteria” for the studies. So anyone with same-sex attraction who does not identify as LGBT would likely be excluded, and yet there is a significant minority of individuals with SSA who do not identify as LGBT, but instead prioritize their religious identity.

A new study published in the Spring 2021 Issues in Law & Medicine, by a socio-politically diverse team of psychologists, found that participants who rejected an LGB identity did not have worse levels of depression, anxiety, and psychosocial flourishing than those who were LGB identified. André Van Mol, M.D., in a summary of the study published by Christian Medical & Dental Association cautioned against using studies derived from, or dominated by LGB identified individuals who reject or alienate traditional faith communities for crafting laws or advocacy that affect sexual minorities in traditional religious communities. Issues in Law & Medicine, CMDA article.

Switzerland – Redefines discrimination of LGBT group

63.1% of Swiss voters recently agreed to penalize public discrimination of individuals belonging to the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender (LGBT) group. This amendment adds sexual orientation as an extension to Switzerland’s racism statutes that penalized discrimination based on race, ethnicity and religion. This law would essentially put an end to things said such as ‘Burn the gay’ or ‘Lesbians must be raped’. Opponents argued that this was counter to freedom of expression, and that they should be able to express their views on homosexuality publicly. Experts on the other hand explained that the law does not penalize arguments and that there is a big difference between discussing a different view respectfully, and insulting someone and promoting hatred. More

USA – The Supreme Court ruled in favour of religious freedom

The Supreme Court ruled unanimously that a Catholic social services agency in Philadelphia could defy city rules and refuse to work with same-sex couples who apply to take in foster children. The decision, in the latest clash between antidiscrimination principles and claims of conscience, was a setback for gay rights and further evidence that religious groups almost always prevail in the current court. The Catholic agency, Chief Justice Roberts wrote, “seeks only an accommodation that will allow it to continue serving the children of Philadelphia in a manner consistent with its religious beliefs; it does not seek to impose those beliefs on anyone else.” More

Hungary – Lawmakers ban portrayals of homosexuality to minors

Recently Hungary’s parliament passed a bill that bans homosexuality in any content portraying or “promoting” homosexuality or sex reassignment to anyone under 18. The bill passed on a 157-1 vote. Under the law, any educational programs, advertisements, books, movies or television programs depicting homosexuality or other gender minorities in a positive light will no longer be allowed. The bill is experiencing backlash calling it propaganda against the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) community. On the other hand, based on reports from medical experts in the UK who fear that children are being rushed into life altering surgeries, plus the Keira Bell case of the transgender regret she and many teens like her face, Hungary is acting in the best interest of minors who are emotionally and physiologically underdeveloped. More