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Monday
Jun042012

Needed: A groundswell of support for Canadian abortion legislation

By Don Hutchinson

The pursuit of a Canadian law to protect children in the womb has been a divisive issue on the Canadian agenda for decades … within the pro-life community.

WeNeedaLaw.ca was launched with the daunting objective “to build a groundswell of support among the Canadian public for federal abortion legislation” and quickly experienced that lack of unity; perhaps, because it threatens to be effective in establishing some form of protection for children in the womb, while accepting that the legislation sought might not protect all. Kudos to Mike Schouten who entered the fray with eyes wide open to that reality.

As WeNeedaLaw.ca notes:

Canada is the only nation in the Western world without abortion legislation. Clearly, we are out of step with our international counterparts, and it is time we fall into line with them and enact a law that protects pre-born humans. It has been almost twenty-five years since Canada has had any such legislation. This fact is a sad reflection on a country that prides itself on a high standard of human rights. This egregious violation of rights against pre-born children needs to be addressed, and in order to motivate and encourage our politicians to introduce legislation it is imperative that Canadians unite in their desire for a law.

weneedaLAW.ca is a gathering place where parliamentarians, organizations, indeed all Canadians, can come together with the purpose of providing a loud and clear message that we need to do all we can to protect children in the womb with federal abortion legislation. [my underlining for emphasis]

In pursuit of the objective “to do all we can to protect children in the womb with federal abortion legislation” Schouten has met with the same type of internal opposition from a portion of the pro-life community that prevented Canada from placing any limitation on abortion the last time government legislation was before Parliament.  Those who advocate against any law that would restrict abortion unless it will prevent all abortions are, in fact, advocating against the saving of lives rather than in support of their stated goal of not legalizing abortion. It should come as no surprise that in the absence of a law abortion is legal; and, in Canada, unrestrictedly so right up until the moment after birth.

I was hopeful that people would see the soundness in the position that no law saves no lives and some law will save some lives.

Although the Montreal Gazette has removed this June 2, 2010 piece from their website, fortunately Christianity.ca re-published Margaret Somerville’s “Busting the Abortion Myths” (with permission). In the piece Somerville notes that, although the data is limited and difficult to obtain, what is available identifies that over 400 post-viability abortions take place in Canada each year.

It amazes me how much people are willing to do to prevent one woman from entering an abortion clinic and how little they are willing to act to save children in the womb by the thousands – 400 each year would add up pretty quickly. 1991 to 2012 equals 8,400 lives.

It is much easier to move a law forward than to implement from no law. How many who stood against Bill C-43 in 1991 wish they could have a “do over” when they think about the change that has taken place in Canadian society since that fateful January day when Canada’s Senate bound itself in a tie on third reading (thus defeating legislation that would have limited abortion that had passed easily through the House of Commons and two prior votes in the Senate)? How many will answer (I believe to God) for the lives lost by not advocating to protect children at some point in their growth and development in the womb?

I’m glad I supported C-43 in 1990 and 1991 – imperfect though it was – and have been involved in taking steps to save one at a time and to save thousands.

The objective “to build a groundswell of support among the Canadian public for federal abortion legislation” is a substantial undertaking and I welcome WeNeedaLaw.ca to the pro-life team.

 

 

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