Queensland’s election turns on life-or-death issues

Palaszczuk serves up an October surprise

Queenslanders have commenced voting in what many believe is the most significant Australian poll in decades, as major and minor parties not only give their vision for Queensland to flourish, but they also clearly state their intentions in regards to abortion and euthanasia.

In a surprise move at her recent election launch, Queensland’s Labor Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk announced that, if re-elected, she would fast-track the introduction of euthanasia legislation to February. This was a change to her previous position which was to hold off on any decision until the tabling of the Queensland Law Reform Commission’s report in March.

The introduction of euthanasia legislation has become a top Labor priority.

In 2018, another top priority for the Labor party was the legalisation of abortion in Queensland at any stage of pregnancy without exception. What was passed shocked our State. Up until 22 weeks of pregnancy, abortion is available, no questions asked. After 22 weeks of pregnancy, abortion is legal for physical, psychological or social reasons. The doctor (not the woman) performing a post-22-week abortion must check with another doctor. This can be by phone, or by speaking to someone at the same abortion clinic. There are no legal grounds for a Queensland doctor to decline a woman’s request for an abortion. If conducting an abortion violates a doctor’s conscience, they are legally required to refer the woman to someone who will perform the procedure.

Queensland’s latest abortion data reveals that in the 30 weeks up to 30 June 2019, there were 5,338 abortions. Of these, 35 took place after the age of viability. Nineteen of the abortions during that 30 week period resulted in a live birth outcome. Babies who undergo, or even survive, an abortion procedure are not given pain relief, or medical assistance.

Abortion is searing the consciences of our nation. Our culture has been sucked in by cruel lies and our most vulnerable are paying a high price. We no longer value the sanctity of human life nor do we understand God’s design for the sanctity of the family.

It is not surprising then, that a Black Mass has been planned for election eve in Noosa. The Noosa Temple of Satan are part of the Satanic Australia network who are politically active and fight for “satanic change” including access to euthanasia and abortion. The battle lines are clearly drawn and we have been presented with a choice for life or death.

Many issues that Christians care deeply about are decided Federally. When it comes to State politics, it is hard to think of a more important consideration that would affect how we vote, than to support the inherent value of every human life. Encouragingly, at this Queensland election, voters who care about life have been presented with a very real choice. Parties and candidates, usually preferring to be quiet on issues of this nature, are being called on to state their position and the stark contrasts are becoming obvious.

Regarding euthanasia legislation, the Katter Party and a number of Independents oppose its introduction. The LNP have said they will fix Queensland’s critically under-resourced palliative care system before they consider introducing euthanasia legislation.

The LNP, Katter’s Australia Party, One Nation and a number of Independent candidates, have all spoken out strongly against the Labor abortion laws. They have also committed to review Queensland’s abortion legislation, enact changes to save babies and protect women, and review adoption laws and foster care.

It is not enough to simply vote ‘pro-life’.

Of course, our hope does not rest in any political party. The answer to every cry of the human heart is only to be found in Jesus – the very embodiment of life – and in his kingdom. He taught us to pray, “Your Kingdom come, Your will be done, on earth, as it is in heaven.” What I believe his followers must consider then, is what is his will in regards to the sanctity of life? And how should that affect the vote of his followers? What part can we play in seeing his will be done on earth in our lifetime?

There is no doubt that this is a significant pro-life election in our nation’s history. If we are serious about saving the lives of unborn children, I believe there is a clear choice as we vote. But it is not enough to simply vote ‘pro-life’. We must also seek to understand why women have abortions, and advocate for pro-life policies in a way that communicates our care for the woman, as well as her precious unborn little one.

The majority of young women who have an abortion do so because they see no other hope for an unexpected or unwanted pregnancy. In the same way, many who support assisted suicide do so because they have been led to believe that the act of killing someone is a compassionate response to suffering.

As sinners, saved by grace, we should be the most gracious of all people. We must walk our talk, and be proactive in our care for all life, born and unborn. The world is watching and are quick to call us out if our words contradict our actions.

At the upcoming election, Queenslanders who value life have an opportunity to choose life.

The words from Deuteronomy 30 are so pertinent – “See, I set before you today life and prosperity, death and destruction. For I command you today to love the Lord your God, to walk in obedience to him, and to keep his commands, decrees and laws; then you will live and increase, and the Lord your God will bless you in the land you are entering to possess. This day I call the heavens and the earth as witnesses against you that I have set before you life and death, blessings and curses. Now choose life, so that you and your children may live 20 and that you may love the Lord your God, listen to his voice, and hold fast to him. For the Lord is your life.”

Choose life.

Wendy Francis is Queensland State Director of the Australian Christian Lobby.