World Population Day “Everyone Counts” Theme Should Include Unborn Children

by Scott Fischbach

Nations throughout the world will celebrate World Population Day Sunday, July 11, with the theme, “Everyone Counts.” Established in 1989 by the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), World Population Day calls attention to urgent global issues.

MCCL GO is pleased to see the United Nations express concern for the lives of every human being. People in many parts of the world are suffering from lack of food, water, health care and other essentials to life. One of the worst threats humans face, however, is that of being killed by abortion before they are even born.

The UNFPA is “an international development agency that promotes the right of every woman, man and child to enjoy a life of health and equal opportunity.”

The UNFPA’s stated goals are to advance “policies and programs to reduce poverty and to ensure that every pregnancy is wanted, every birth is safe, every young person is free of HIV, and every girl and woman is treated with dignity and respect.” In the pursuit of these goals, the lives of unborn children must not be forgotten.

The rights of unborn children have been clearly delineated in United Nations documents. For example, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (Dec. 10, 1948) includes life as a universal right:

Article 3: Everyone has the right to life, liberty and security of person.

The Convention on the Rights of the Child (Nov. 20, 1989, General Assembly Resolution 44) states the following:
Bearing in mind that, as indicated in the Declaration of the Rights of the Child, “the child, by reason of his physical and mental immaturity, needs special safeguards and care, including appropriate legal protection, before as well as after birth” (emphasis added).

Article 6
States Parties recognize that every child has the inherent right to life.
States Parties shall ensure to the maximum extent possible the survival and development of the child.

The destruction of human life by abortion is the greatest human rights struggle of our time. The World Health Organization estimates that 42 million abortions are performed worldwide each year—a profound violation of the equal dignity and rights of human beings. The destruction of unborn human life is in direct opposition to the “Everyone Counts” belief fostered by World Population Day.

As the UNFPA seeks an all-inclusive approach to addressing the concerns of human life, MCCL GO calls for renewed recognition of unborn children as essential members of the human family. Real progress in lifting people out of extreme poverty and suffering will never be achieved without guaranteeing the right to life for all human beings, before as well as after birth.

Scott Fischbach is the executive director of Minnesota Citizens Concerned for Life and oversees MCCL Go, its international outreach, July, 9, 2010

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