by Squeaker and Paycheck
You get to know a lot about an organization by looking at its leaders. Both John and I learned this first-hand when we served on the Board of Directors of a local charity in Ottawa.
The Chairperson of the Board of Directors of Free the Children USA is Eva Haller. She’s also on the Board of Directors of Free the Children International. Just six months ago, in October 2013, Ms. Haller received the Lifetime Achievement Award from the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA). For those of you who are not aware, the UNFPA is the United Nations arm responsible for pushing contraception around the world. In fact, in November 2012, less than a year before Ms. Haller received her award, the UNFPA declared contraception a “universal human right,” which even drew the attention of the mainstream media. Five months before Ms. Haller’s award, in May 2013, the UNFPA rose to new heights of philanthropy by announcing a partnership with Planned Parenthood to make sure contraception was readily available to “post-conflict and post-disaster countries.” After all, in the aftermath of national emergencies, these countries need condoms much more than food, water or housing. Everyone knows that.
But it gets worse. At the award ceremony, Ms. Haller proudly handed a trophy to Anzaira Roxas, the Deputy Project Coordinator at the Family Planning Organization of the Philippines (FPOP), which is a member of the International Planned Parenthood Federation. In addition to handing out 339,000 condoms in the Philippines in one year, Ms. Roxas’ team also lobbied the Filipino government to pass the infamous Reproductive Health Act, that insidious piece of anti-family legislation which the Filipino bishops have fought tooth and nail.
It turns out that Ms. Haller is married to Dr. Yoel Haller. He’s now retired, but he was an obstetrician/gynecologist who served as Medical Director for Planned Parenthood of the San Francisco-Alameda Counties. Mr. Haller is currently on the Advisory Board of Directors of Free the Children (scroll to the bottom of this page and click on the “Advisory Board of Directors” tab).
This information about two prominent members of Free the Children should give you some context about where the organization is coming from when it speaks of “reproductive health” and “family planning”.
This may seem like “guilt-by-association” evidence, and while it does not rise to the level of smoking gun evidence that has been gathered thus far on Free the Children, the perspective of people who serve on one’s Board says quite a bit about the DIRECTION of where the organization is going. That’s what a Board of Directors does, after all. It gives direction on how the organization’s resources are deployed, how the organization carries out its mission, and what kind of guidance it provides to its employees. A slip-up on a website can always be excused and blamed on an ‘intern’ or a ‘mistake’. Making a deliberate choice for the direction of a charity is a different ball game altogether, and in some respects, is even worse than direct “smoking gun” evidence.
Marc Kielburger says that Free the Children takes “no position” on abortion or contraception, but apparently he has no problem inviting decorated anti-life activists on to the Board of Directors of his organization. To provide what advice, precisely?
Perhaps he has fooled himself with a make-believe distinction in his head that sees no technical problem in seeking large sums of money from Catholic institutions, organizations, and school boards for his organization, while concurrently seeking official, formal direction from individuals who seek to destroy what the Catholic Church seeks to uphold; namely, the sanctity of human sexuality, human life, and the family. Just how does that moral calculus work?
The problem here, of course, is really not with the Kielburgers. It’s with us. We’re the problem. Development & Peace, Free the Children, and every other unCatholic organization out there has seen easy pickings in the Catholic Church, ever since we decided to outsource “social justice” to groups who share 95% of our values but reject the 5% on which all the others hinge.
We don’t take control or protect Catholic identity any more, and then when the next scandal hits, we sit around a board room table wondering how this could have happened!
Today in the Canadian Church, we just send money to Bill Clinton’s friends who are obviously looking out for the best interest of the family and the Church’s teachings. We learn to make excuses and compromise our convictions because we don’t want to do the heavy lifting.
I call it Catholic by proxy.