AD2000 - a journal of religious opinionAD Books
Ask a Question
View Cart
Search AD2000: author: full text:  
AD2000 - a journal of religious opinion
Find a Book:

AD2000 Home
Article Index
About AD2000
Contact Us
Email Updates


Add Me
Remove Me

Subscriber Access:

Enter the Internet Access Key from your mailing label here for full access!

Societal violence and the murder of children

Bookmark and Share

 Contents - Jun 2014AD2000 June 2014 - Buy a copy now
Editorial: The significance of Pentecost - Peter Westmore
Saints John XXIII and John Paul II canonised - AD2000 Report
News: The Church Around the World
Chain of generosity from Australia to Nigeria - Madonna Brosnan
Frassati Australia: dedicated young adult ministry - Br Barry Coldrey
UK Bishop speaks out on secularism's debt to Christianity - CNA REPORT
Societal violence and the murder of children - Anne Lastman
Fr Des Byrne: priest and catechist extraordinary - Bishop Peter J. Elliott
Missions: Salesians appeal for Solomon Islands emergency
US Catholic school embroiled in dispute over Church teaching - Kirsten Andersen
Why England's churches are empty - Nick Hallett
Religious freedom and same-sex 'marriage' - Fr John FLynn LC
Sisters of St Paul of Chartres and their global impact - CNA REPORT
Letters: Smartphone apps on the Mass - A. Erskine
Letters: What about the Roman Missal smartphone app? - Harry O'Regan
Letters: Mr Westmore: please put your thing away! - Anne Lastman
Letters: Modern slavery report - Laurie Sheehan
Letters: Triple J Radio - Arnold Jago
Books: HANDING ON THE FAITH IN AN AGE OF DISBELIEF, by Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger - Br Barry Coldrey (reviewer)
Books: A CATHOLIC ETON? Newman's Oratory School, by Paul Shrimpton - Br Barry Coldrey (reviewer)
Books: THE CAMPION SOCIETY: Lay Catholic Action in Australia, by Colin H. Jory - Br Barry Coldrey (reviewer)
Books: Order books from
Reflection: Eucharistic adoration: path to union with the Holy Trinity - Bishop James Conley

I have recently written for AD2000 about abortion and violence and here in a real life horror story brought to our screen and news services on Easter Sunday, we were told of the murder of two innocent children.

At that time we were told that they were murdered by a male within the household and known to them.

Since that day we have learnt that the children, two little girls, Savannah aged four and Indianna aged three were allegedly murdered by their own father. What horror on a day that should be one of glory.

And yet ... more and more we are hearing of innocence brutalised. Innocence being the scapegoat of societal sins. Yes sins ...


We have become afraid to use that word because it's not "cool" to use the word sin. But sin it is. Let's call it what it is. It is violence against God and human life. That article I wrote now seems prophetic.

When I heard and listened in stunned horror at that breaking news, I was reminded of another recent murder of young Luke Batty in front of his mother and friends, again by his father; of a little girl called Darcy Freeman aged four tossed over a bridge to her death by her father; of the three Farquaharson children, aged 10, seven and two, driven into a dam and allowed to drown by their own father; a little toddler called Yasmina also murdered by her father; and of course other names written in our inglorious history.

This does not include mothers who have allegedly murdered their own children. Why? Why so much violence against the most innocent, trusting and loving? Is it revenge?

And if it is revenge, why so much revenge now? Divorce and separation have always existed but children were always safe and protected against harm.

What has changed? What has made men and women lose that protective instinct that ensured that their child/ren were not harmed, even in the event of divorce? What has led to us becoming so desensitised that it has become possible to murder one who cannot fight back? What has changed so that the first answer to a difficulty is the murder of innocence?

My answer to this is that we have created a society where innocence is now murdered legally with abortion up to time of birth and now talk of after-birth abortion. "Motherhood" and "fatherhood" have changed.

If it is legal to brutalise a child in the womb and a male cannot stop this or demands this then his "fatherhood" has indeed changed.

What is wrong and what has snapped within societal hearts and minds that the strongest instinct of a parent to protect its young has been so eroded? What has taken us down to this path?

Abortion up to full term is violence, namely the murder of an unborn child; yet is legal.

It is not a right; it is a death sentence, just as much of a death sentence as those meted out by the aforementioned fathers and mothers who murdered their children. It is no different; just location (womb), size (age) and visibility.

We are heading towards a society where innocence (small, sick, elderly incapacitated) can be murdered legally in a further type of murder, euthanasia.

Belgium legalised euthanasia of children on  14 February 2014. Having gradually created societies that refer to murder in sanitised language is it any wonder that atrocities happen?

Why is our society so outraged at the murders of the above mentioned children? Only because these events were brought vividly to our TV screens leaving us feeling helpless and experiencing a sense of loss, as if it were our own loss, even though we may not have known the families and children. But it is still a loss with a sense of pain and horror at what the they and their family must have felt as they reflected on the events surrounding the tragedies.

On the other hand, abortion and its destruction of a child serenely growing in a supposedly safe place is hidden by the media.

This same media that makes so much of these visible child murders shrinks from bringing to vision a dismembered unborn child. This apparently will disturb viewers and raise questions regarding the "right to" and "rightness" of abortion.

It will bring into question the lie told that what is growing in the womb is not a child but some anonymous cluster of cells.


We have a violent society. We have assisted this society to become violent because we have sanctioned violence beginning with the youngest to the oldest; and those (as per Hitler) not "quite right".

We have said that only those of a certain size can be recognised; and so the media brings to our screens horrors deemed newsworthy; but not others deemed to be "rights".

As I pondered these latest child murders I wondered if the copycat aspect was present.

Does the media bring to vision the horror of the event and the attention it gets and so push someone who is at the edge of the abyss right over? The media has an unspoken agreement about reporting on youth suicide; why not on this, or does this have another agenda tied to it?

We read a great deal about more funds being needed, and political issues. But could it also be that the fathers who commit such violence may have also been pushed to the limit? Is our justice system fair with fathers and their rights with children?

Before further politicising the issue we need to look at what is behind the rage and violence. If this derives from an unjust system then surely we can fix this. If it is mental health then that is another matter.

We do indeed have a violent society, one we have created via our demands, laws, visuals, games, and above all loss of God, inner peace and a knowledge of right and wrong. We are reaping what we have sown and the harvest is very bitter.

Bookmark and Share

Reprinted from AD2000 Vol 27 No 5 (June 2014), p. 8

Page design and automation by
Umbria Associates Pty Ltd © 2001-2004