Sydney's Cardinal Pell heavily criticized an Australian medical journal for publishing a professor's letter calling for a tax on children of $5000 per child and $800 yearly for each child after birth, as punishment for parents who have families larger than two children.
Speaking in Seoul, where he was awarded the Mysterium Vitae Grand Prix award for his outstanding efforts for the pro-life movement, Cardinal Pell expressed his disbelief that the Medical Journal of Australia would give credence to such a view by printing it without censure.
"I am not sure what is more extraordinary, that an obstetrician could hold such a view or that a leading medical journal could publish such a view, but either way, this is a striking illustration of where a minority neo-pagan, anti-human mentality, wants to take us," he said.
Dr. Barry Walters condemned Australia's "baby bonus" program, writing that "showering financial booty on new mothers" encouraged "greenhouse-unfriendly behaviour" and that Australia should adopt population plans similar to those in India or China. Trees should be planted to negate the ecological effect of every child born, he said.
But Cardinal Pell said that anti-human environmental proposals from extremist minorities were the real cause for concern.
"The moral and social ecology of the earth also calls for urgent attention," he said. "If we have learned anything from the atrocities of the last century, it is that wide-scale attacks upon human life and dignity stem from reductive understandings of the human person.
"We have been subjected to a lot of nonsense about climate disasters as some zealots have been painting extreme scenarios to frighten us. They claim ocean levels are about to rise spectacularly, that there could be the occasional tsunami as high as an eight story building, the Amazon basin could be destroyed as the ice cap in the Arctic and in Greenland melts."
"Unicef reports that there are an estimated 7000 fewer girls born every day in India because of the spread of cheap, pre-natal sex-determination technology and abortion," he said, by way of illustrating the negative effects of environmentalism that fails to recognize the dignity of human beings.
Climate change has been used often by politicians in recent years as an excuse to implement population control legislation. In Asian countries, particularly in India and China, the limits on children have led to a spike in sex-selective abortions.
[CE editor's note: Readers interested in the full text of Cardinal Pell's remarks will find them in the Bishops Speak section on our front page or by clicking here.]