Saturday, December 24, 2011

And another MP speaks out: Jeff Watson

Debate abortion, unborn's human rights says Tory MP Watson

According to the CBC:

Watson said human rights for the unborn and abortion don't necessarily go hand-in-hand but said "there could be links between the two."

"I’d love to hear the debate on this. What are the various permutations and implications if human rights are extended to the unborn?" Watson said. "Parliament is exactly the place to have that discussion. If it doesn’t happen in Parliament, where do we have these discussions?"

"Obviously, the government has been extremely clear it is not going to reopen any debate. But the rules of Parliament are such that individual members of Parliament, if they want to discuss these issues, can bring them forward for discussion.

"And I think it's clear how the government will vote on those issues, too."

Watson admitted "it's no secret" he is a pro life member of Parliament and believes the "old debate" about abortion should be re-examined.

"I think there’s more that can be done with respect to that issue," Watson said.

He said the government could provide more social and financial support to women who experience unplanned pregnancies. Citing a college student as a hypothetical example, he said a young woman today would not have to choose between education and being an unexpected mother.

"With the right supports you could have both," Watson said. "There’s more to this discussion than the old debate."

Good on Jeff Watson. The debate continues. With or without Stephen Harper. 

Could there be a better Christmas present than this--pro-life MPs speaking out in defence of our pre-born Canadians?

Merry Christmas to all.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Is this 400 year old law outdated?

Tory MP boldly calls for abortion debate with statement that avoids using the word abortion

If Scott Stinson wants us to call what MP Stephen Woodworth is doing: "obfuscating", does it matter?

I say this is just one more gutsy principled Conservative MP in a growing list of similarly gutsy principled Conservative MPs. Good for them.

Just because the other Stephen doesn't want to have a debate using that word, well, we'll simply have the debate without Mr. Harper.

Woodworth said in his press release:
"Canadian law provides no human rights protection whatsoever for children before the moment of complete birth. This results from an unusual Canadian statute which defines a human being as a child who has completely proceeded in a living state from the mother’s body, whether or not the child has breathed.

This means that in Canada a child is legally considered to be sub-human while his or her little toe remains in the birth canal, even if he or she is breathing. This law was first formulated prior to the seventeenth century, when an early version of it was recorded in Coke’s Institutes of Law. In those times, medical science and principles of human rights were not sufficiently advanced to challenge such a law.

The important question is whether this 400 year old Canadian law is supported by 21st century medical science and principles of human rights. Perhaps Canadians should at least examine this question. MP Stephen Woodworth proposes that Parliament has a responsibility to lead that examination."

Yes I agree heartily with Stephen Woodworth. Let's examine this question.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Yonder breaks a new and glorious morn

This year I gave away my tiny little Nativity scene that I kept in my office. I had bought it at the dollar store a couple of years ago, and every year I would place it on my desk at Christmas, because, as everyone knows, Christmas is about the birth of Jesus Christ.

Since I didn't have it anymore I knew I'd have to get another one. So off I went back to the same dollar store. They didn’t have any. There were lots of bells and Santa Claus, ribbons and angels and other things we have come to associate with Christmas. But no Nativity scenes.

I then proceeded to go to gift shops, card shops, one department store, and saw lots more bells, Santa Claus, ribbons and bows, and tree ornaments. Nothing even remotely resembled a Nativity scene. I did actually find one porcelain Nativity scene--for $85. That seemed a bit rich, considering Jesus was born in, you know, a stable; with the sheep and the hay and the cows.

I even found a s'more in a manger. This is not a joke. This is for real. This would be a marshmallow in a manger. You know, like spun sugar and gelatin in a manger sitting on top of a graham cracker. Apart from the fact that I was offended, it was really rather pathetic. Move on, I thought, don't let it get you down. Don't lose sight of what you're looking for, a Nativity scene with Baby Jesus, Mary and Joseph.

Finally I found it in another dollar store. Three figurines: a baby Jesus lying in a manger with a little baby sheep beside him, Mary too, and a man with a staff. I think the man figurine was actually a shepherd, but he looked close enough to Joseph that I grabbed him. When I asked my sister who she thought he was, she that yes, he was probably a shepherd and not Joseph, since Joseph usually knelt beside baby Jesus.

That was fine. At least, I said, my Joseph is not a marshmallow.

My Nativity scene is complete. I am ready for Christmas.

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Pro-life experts need not apply

The government agency Echo, has decided Ontario women need more access to abortions in a report called: Recommendations to Improve Abortion Services in Ontario: Report from the Expert Panel.
(Echo is a non-profit organization completely funded with Ontario tax dollars. Their revenue came from government grants of $2,338,423 in 2010, and $1,373,999 in 2009.)

So how did Echo conclude this? Well they asked a panel of "experts" to study abortion access in Ontario. The only problem is that, of all the experts they asked, none of them oppose abortion. No pro-life experts were consulted.

But here’s what else bothers me. It’s that Ontario abortion doctors are already performing way more abortions than we expected in 2010 at a cost of about 35 million dollars. Isn’t that enough? As well, Echo says they represent all Ontario women, but not all Ontario women are pro-abortion. So how can Echo say that they represent all of us? Clearly they can’t.

Their “expert” panel consisted of:
a cross-provincial Abortion Expert Panel, who based the recommendations on their own expertise, key stakeholder consultation, and the findings of an Ontario based-study undertaken by Dr. L. Ferris through the Institute for Clinical Evaluative Sciences. The panel, assembled by Echo: Improving Women’s Health in Ontario, has been meeting over the past year to articulate clear recommendations and to assist in the development of the release strategy for key information from the study findings. The recommendations have implications for the health care, regulatory and training systems.”

I asked Echo’s CEO Pat Campbell if the "cross-provincial Abortion Expert Panel that was consulted with, had also consulted with medical professionals/other experts, who oppose abortion? Her answer was:
None of the expert panel members oppose abortion.”

The report's “vision” is to:
ensure accessible, safe, appropriate, timely, and non-judgmental abortion services for Ontario women through an integrated and sustainable sexual and reproductive health system.”

Some background on Echo comes from their Strategic plan and Reflecting Women’s voices.

Their stakeholders include the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care, the premier’s office, Members of Provincial parliaments, policy makers, and Ontario Women. This means this “pro-choice” group has the ear of not only your Premier and your MPP, but also your Ministry of Health. In fact Echo's mandate is to :
“provide input to government policy” and to “Act as a provincial advisor on women’s health to the Minister, the government and stakeholders; and Provide expert advice and recommendations in response to Minister and Government requests.”

Their “Health Issue focus” includes “Abortion Availability”. But there is no mention anywhere, in any of these three reports, on focusing on adoption availability/promotion, or on focusing on crisis pregnancy centres, two very important other choices for Ontario women.

Echo says it will:
be the organization that...the women of Ontario seek out with their questions, ideas, options and support on issues of women’s health, equity and access.”

But will pro-life women go to Echo “with their questions, ideas, options and support on issues of women’s health?” I don’t think so.

Echo's conclusion from this "expert panel" is that:
Ontario women benefit from access to well trained, committed service providers that do this important work in a generally effective and safe manner. The recommendations in this report are intended to continue to support the development of a system of care that supports improved quality and equity of access [to abortion].”

So what is our take away from this?

It is that in Canada’s biggest province, a 100% publicly funded organization, that supposedly “reflects all Ontario women’s voices”, but doesn’t bother to consult with pro-life voices, and that does not advocate for crucial pro-life choices, can conclude that women need more abortion access, when Ontario’s abortion doctors are already killing a whopping 44,000 babies a year and spending a fortune doing it. Do we really need to kill/spend more?

May I suggest you write a letter to Mr. McGuinty ( ) and your MPP?
(MPP contact information here)

You could tell them that you aren’t really interested in your tax dollars buying more abortions.

Even better, you could tell them that you’d like to see an expert panel formed to study, support and advise Ontario women on Crisis pregnancy centers and adoption agencies.

In fact maybe Mr. McGuinty could throw $35 million at these choices. That would indeed be money well spent.

Monday, December 12, 2011

CIHI clarification on abortion statistics

I noted the discrepancy between this FOI information I received, and what CIHI published for 2009. (My FOI asked for 2010, but CIHI hadn't published 2010 yet, so I made some general comparisons to previous years 2009, 2008, and 2007).

OHIP records showed at least 31% more abortions than what CIHI typically reports.

So I decided to ask CIHI if they could explain this discrepency.

This is what CIHI told me:

"Thank you for bringing this to our attention. As you know, CIHI just took over reporting on induced abortions from Statistics Canada last year. We are committed to improving the data quality, and have already made strides in areas such as increased accuracy regarding abortion methods and the number of complications associated with in-hospital procedures. We’ve also expanded coverage as a whole.

Currently, our Ontario data on abortion comes from hospitals and clinics. Hospital-based abortions are from administrative data and represent actual number of procedures; they are not based on OHIP billing data. In the case of clinics, we receive records from the provincial ministry that are based on OHIP data. They are for the two billing codes—S752 and S785—that most accurately reflect the scope of our induced abortion database.

We are investigating the information you have provided in order to better understand the discrepancies, and will continue to incorporate any information which will improve our data quality."

I've asked CIHI for some further clarification. I'll keep you posted.

Wanted: love and compassion

I recently made a donation to the Miriam Centre of Ottawa, for which I received a beautiful thank you note. The note said in part:
"Your generosity allows us to welcome with love and compassion, mothers who are facing a difficult pregnancy. On behalf of all our mothers and their families, we wish to thank you from the bottom of our hearts for your gift."

The Miriam Centre's services are provided without federal, provincial or municipal funding, and are funded only with donations.

Their goal is:
"to minister love and compassion to all mothers and also to those involved in their pregnancies.

Mothers, single or married, regardless of age or situation, are welcomed to the Centre before and after the birth of their child.

Miriam Centre offers assistance to mothers who have already given birth and are having difficulty adjusting to their new lives. Thus they are more confident of their future and that of their child."

It got me thinking.

On the one hand, here is an organization; run by a handful of staff members and some volunteers; whose only source of revenue are donations from the public; who receives no government funding; whose goal is to help a woman with a crisis pregnancy.

On the other hand, Ontario doctors performed at least 44,000 abortions last year; publicly funded by the taxpayer; at an average cost of $800 dollars per abortion.

That's about $35,000,000 Ontarians paid in 2010; for a procedure that is not medically necessary; that is harmful to women and their families; that doesn't help society; that destroys innocent human beings; in a time where every health dollar spent in Ontario is crucial.

Is it only me, or is there something wrong with this picture?

Sunday, December 11, 2011

When the medical profession normalizes abortion

An article in the New England Journal of Medicine is claiming that abortion has virtually no negative effect on women.

The article says:
"Few long-term sequelae are evident after abortion, and the morbidity and mortality are lower with induced abortion (either medical or surgical) than with pregnancy carried to term."

How depressing.

We have normalized abortion to such a degree now that it seems we don't even think of other alternatives like adoption anymore. How tragic for the women who have unwittingly or wittingly bought into this pro-abortion viewpoint.

But it is not surprising that women have succumbed to this philosophy, when on the one hand she is influenced by the extreme minority who tell women they should be "pro-choice". And on the other hand, she can read something like this in a medical journal, where the entire article is written from the assumption that the taking of the life of an unborn person, is as normal and acceptable as some minor surgery. But abortion is not the same. A woman will remember and suffer from an abortion for the rest of her life. She is as much a victim as the child is.

Why can't the medical profession be truly compassionate with women and offer them support and counselling to encourage them to find another option and save the child inside of her? They would also be saving the life of the mother.

Whatever happened to the doctor's creed to first do no harm?

Friday, December 9, 2011

Putting an end to abortion

The pro-abortions hate it when we bring morality into the abortion debate. Their comeback is usually the forgettable "Against abortion? Don't have one." This week's We want the Debate poster puts that line in its proper perspective.

I think the topic of morality makes pro-abortions queasy. Like, what if there really is something morally questionable about destroying a little defenceless human being, for no other reason than it's my self given right to do so?

To assuage their icky feelings, they may read something from a hard line pro-abort, like "the only moral abortion is my abortion", with the hope that this will ease their conscience. I wonder if it actually does?

Over time, I suppose, they may convince themselves that abortion is perfectly okay, that it doesn't harm the woman at all. And the unborn child, what do they think of her?

The thing is, what do the pro-abortions think the criminal code is based on, if not morality? Don't murder, don't steal, don't rape. The list goes on.

So why are we against abortion? Because abortion hurts a woman, it hurts her family, it hurts society and it hurts a child. There are better ways for a woman to deal with an unplanned pregnancy, like getting support from a crisis pregnancy centre, or putting the child up for adoption. Why is it that the pro-abortions never talk about adoption?

Thank goodness we finally put an end to slavery.

We will put an end to abortion too.

Monday, December 5, 2011

Ontario abortion doctors very busy in 2010

I recently submitted a Freedom of Information request to the Ontario Ministry of Health and Long-term care for 2010 abortion OHIP billing information. This is what I asked for:

1) How many procedures, and how many dollars, were billed for all abortion clinics in Ontario, for each of the following codes:
S752, S785, P053, P054, S770, S783

2) How many procedures, and how many dollars, were billed for all private physicians' offices in Ontario, for each of the following codes:
S752, S785, P053, P054, S770, S783

3) How many procedures, and how many dollars, were billed for all hospitals in Ontario, for each of the following codes:
S752, S785, P053, P054, S770, S783

(Procedure descriptions here and here and are also included in my graph below. The graph also contains a compilation of the statistics that I received from the Ministry.)

There were 77 selective fetal reduction procedures done in Ontario in 2010.

There were at least 43,997 procedures performed in 2010 in Ontario for a base cost of $5,470,562.36.

(Note: this is only what doctors billed for. See Ministry notes 2 and 3 below regarding costs. Therefore this base cost does not appear to reflect the total cost of an abortion to the taxpayer, which has been estimated at an average cost of about $800/abortion)

CIHI had reported that in 2009, there were 30,268 abortions in Ontario; that in 2008 there were 32,150 abortions, and in 2007, 32,331abortions.

We have suspected that CIHI/Statistics Canada abortions have been under reported. These 2010 figures from these OHIP billings, are actually about 45.4% (my original entry reported this at 31%, which is incorrect) higher than the CIHI figures for 2009 and seems to confirm that abortions are being under reported in Ontario.

(The following three notes were included in the response I received back from the Ontario Ministry of Health and Long-term care for this 2010 abortion OHIP billing information.)

(1) The total procedures corresponds solely to the volumes of these procedures as per listed fee schedule codes.

(2) The total billed is based on the billed amount submitted on the claim and does not necessarily represent what was approved and paid for the claim (emphasis included). For example facility fees for specific TA clinics are not included in the fee billed total. The total billed measure includes billed amounts for the professional component volumes as well as the anaesthesia and/or surgical assist components where applicable.

(3) Both fee-for-service as well as globally funded claims were included and restricted to Ontario physicians, in-province claims only. Any potential out-of-province, out-of-country claims were not included.

Note: On May 4, 2012, I corrected an error I made in this blog entry in the percentage calculation above. I reported OHIP's numbers as being 31% higher that CIHI's numbers. It should have read that OHIP's numbers were 45.4% higher than CIHI's numbers.

UPDATE January 15, 2017OHIP's numbers are actually 53.3% higher than CIHI's numbers for 2010 stats as I calculated here.

Click on the graph below and it will enlarge.

Monday, November 28, 2011

Who decides if I will live or die?

I am not afraid of dying. But I am deathly afraid of dying in a hospital.

The one thing that must never be allowed to be part of our health care system, is the ability for a health care person to have any power to decide whether I will live or I will die.

I have been up close and personal to: negligent, complaining, arrogant, lying, non-caring, rude "health care professionals". No, they are not all like that. Many of them are not negligent, never complain, are humble, tell the truth and care.

But it's the former group I worry about, should they ever be able to practice euthanasia.

Here's what else I've encountered:
  • I've been told a loved one needs to vacate their bed because it is costing $1600 dollars a day.
  • One nurse complained to me that she was working without a signed contract and all I could think was, "and what does this have to do with the care of my loved one? You're still being paid right? Oh you are, so then why would I care that you don't have a signed contract?"
  • I've had a loved one be sent home from emergency only to return the following night to the very same emergency department with the very same problem.
  • I've had a loved one die from what I believed was a lack of care and neglect. A subsequent complaint to the regulatory body involved, concluded that no, there was no negligence and guess what? "The care provided this patient by Dr. X not only met, but in several instances exceeded the standard of practice expected in the profession." Exceeded? I think not.
I know that working in the health care profession can be hard, and that some are overworked, etc. Fine, that may or may not be true, some of the time, or all of the time, maybe for some and not for others.

Check out what Derek Miedema from the Institute of Marriage and Family Canada has to say on the subject. He gives some startling evidence of euthanasia and assisted suicide gone horribly wrong:
"In Belgium, one-third of euthanasia deaths done by doctors occur without the explicit request of the person killed, according to a 2010 study of euthanasia in Belgium. Why? Some doctors decided for the patient that euthanasia was the best option. Though hard to believe, others thought the conversation about dying would be too stressful for the patient, so they killed them instead.
In Switzerland, a 23-year-old rugby player, paralyzed as a result of a training accident, was depressed. Who wouldn't be? He was euthanized despite research that shows people with a spinal cord injury can and do create a satisfying quality of life with time and proper societal and family support.
Reports from the Netherlands indicate that 500 people died without their consent in 2005 alone. A woman in the advanced stages of dementia was recently euthanized there. A long-time supporter of euthanasia, doctors killed her even though she was incapable of deciding for or against the euthanasia decision at the time of her death.
In Oregon, the law requires that patients get opinions from two doctors before they are approved to die. The problem here is that 58 of 61 patients who died under the law in one year got their second opinion from an activist doctor tied to the group pushing for legal assisted suicide all over the U.S."
In the end, all I know is, I don't want anyone from that profession deciding whether I can live or I can die.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

PEI leads Canada in refusal to provide abortions

Good for PEI in refusing to cave in to the pro-abortions.

According to Tamsin McMahon at the National Post:
"Keith Dewar, CEO of Health P.E.I., the arms-length agency created to oversee health-care administration after the government abolished community hospital boards last year, said changes to provincial abortion policy would be up to the government. The province's Health Minister, Doug Currie, said the government has no intention of reopening the debate.

"Abortion is a complex and sensitive issue that was broadly debated and litigated on Prince Edward Island in the mid-1990s," the Health Minister wrote in an email to the Post. "We have no plans to change the current policy or programming."

Abortion is just one of several medical procedures that aren't performed on the island because they are too expensive, including some heart surgeries, cancer treatments and hip replacements, Mr. Currie has said. "To me, it's not about the political discussion, it's more about another service," he told the Charlottetown Guardian last week. "And the more services you add to the health-care system, obviously there's going to be more cost to that."

Doug Currie is right. With scarce financial resources already available for real life saving medically necessary procedures, why would his province decide to fund abortion, a life ending procedure? Abortion is expensive and is almost never medically necessary. So why should taxpayers fund it?

I think Ontario and the rest of Canada need to take the same stance as PEI and defund abortion.

PEI’s “life sanctuary” needs to spread westward and envelope all of Canada.

Monday, November 14, 2011

Debate: Should physicians provide, or refer for, abortion? (who declined to debate)

A "pro-choice" commenter to my blog said that:
"this debate was a total set-up. no one from the pro-choice community in ottawa was asked to participate in the debate. while it was nice that jovan accepted the non-invitation, he did not have the background or experience to argue from the perspective of the pro-choice movement and ended up making some pretty oppressive and ineffectivley thought-out arguments. stephanie spends her entire career articulating these issues, of course she "won". but the pro-life side certainly didn't gain any credibility for such a poorly run event."

So I checked it out, to see exactly who was invited to debate Stephanie Gray.

Here is the list of people who either declined, or did not reply, or ignored the organizers' invitations.

i. Dr. Henry Morgentaler (declined to debate)
ii. Heather Mallick ("pro-choice" columnist for the Toronto Star) (no reply to invitation)
iii. Hon. Dr. Hedy Fry (MP) (declined to debate)
iv. Hon. Dr. Carolyn Bennett (MP) (declined to debate)
v. Dr. Kathryn Treehuba, Uof Ottawa professor (Obs-Gyn), and Ottawa-area abortion provider (no reply to invitation)
vi. Dr. Fraser Fellows, UWO professor (Obs-Gyn), and London-area abortion provider (no reply to invitation)
vii. Federation of Medical Women of Canada (declined to debate)
viii. Abortion Rights Coalition of Canada- Joyce Arthur (declined to debate)
ix. NDP Party (no reply to invitation)
x. Canadians for Choice (declined to debate)
xi. Action Canada for Population Development (no reply to invitation) 
xii. Hon. Dr. Keith Martin (MP) (No reply to invitation)
xiii. Planned Parenthood Ottawa (Heather Holland - Executive Director- Declined to debate)
xiv. Canadian Federation for Sexual Health (no reply to invitation) 
xv. Professor Sanda Rodgers (University of Ottawa) (declined to debate)
xvi. Professor Wayne Sumner (University of Toronto) (declined to debate)

If the "pro-choicers" were not happy with Jovan Morales representing their position, they have only themselves to blame. They were given plenty of opportunity to participate, and declined to.

I guess they thought they could shut down the debate this way. Well, how well did that work out for them? Not too good I'd say.

Maybe they'll think twice next time, before rejecting or ignoring invitations to debate.

Debate: Should physicians provide, or refer for, abortion? (the video)

Seventy-two percent of Canadians surveyed in a September National Omnibus poll support legal protection for unborn babies. Most (62%) want protection from conception, or two or three months' gestation on. Another ten percent favor protection from 6 months on (Source: Environics poll commissioned by LifeCanada).

The majority of Canadians clearly do want legal protection for our unborn children.

So why won't Mr. Harper allow us to debate abortion in Canada?

We still don't know the answer to that question so I guess we'll just have to start the debate without him.

Perhaps Mr. Harper might want to watch Stefanie Gray (CCBR) debating Jovan Morales (Atheist Community of the University of Ottawa) at the University of Ottawa on November 11.

Mr. Harper might want to get involved, and learn something that is extremely important to many of the people he is Prime Minister to. He might even learn something new. Or he can ignore us.

It's your choice, Mr. Harper.

University of Ottawa - abortion debate Nov 11, 2011 from Jeannie on Vimeo.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Debate: Should physicians provide, or refer for, abortion?

The University of Ottawa Students for Life and University of Ottawa Medical Students for Life organized a great debate last night between Stephanie Gray (CCBR)and Jovan Morales (Atheist Community of the University of Ottawa) at the University.

The topic was "Should physicians provide, or refer for, abortion?"

The debate may have never happened because the organizers spent four months looking for someone to debate Stephanie. Ten people were asked, including Joyce Arthur and Dr. Henry Morgentaler. All declined except Jovan (kudos to Jovan for his attempt to be a worthy debating partner to Stephanie.)

There was some rather annoying noise of the rude and heckling variety, but we were able to pretty much block it out. For the most part, the debate was fantastic.

I'm hoping we get a video loaded up to youtube for those of you not able to make it.

Stephanie was the clear winner.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

World Abortion Laws

(This article was published in the September/October 2011 issue of LifeCanada News)

Canada is one of only six countries out of 196 countries--that allows unrestricted abortion up until fetal viability and beyond.

In a paper published on March 24, 2009, American law professor, Randy Beck of the University of Georgia Law School discussed case law in Gonzales, Casey and the Viability Rule as it pertains to abortion.

Beck argues that the:
"The [American] Supreme Court has an unmet obligation to account for the significance accorded to fetal viability in its abortion jurisprudence...Even if one assumes that the Constitution protects a right to terminate a pregnancy, the Court has never offered a principled explanation for its conclusion that the right endures until the fetus can survive outside the womb."

Beck goes on to discuss fetal viability with three arguments.

But it is his third argument that Canadians should take special note. It is his argument of Viability in International Perspective.

Beck complains that "by allowing abortion for any reason until viability, the Court has pushed U.S. abortion law far outside the international mainstream." That “the vast majority” of countries “forbid abortion after 12 weeks gestation.”

Beck says: "Other nations terminate or constrict abortion rights at various points in pregnancy, typically at a much earlier stage in fetal development" and that it makes the US "one of only six countries that allow abortion on demand until the point of viability.”

Not only does Canada allow unrestricted abortion rights until viability, we also allow unrestricted abortion rights until birth. If the US’s abortion law is “far outside the international mainstream”, what does this say for Canada’s situation?
Beck gets his data from the Center for Reproductive Rights, an abortion rights group which identifies five levels of international abortion permissibility:

I. To Save the Woman’s Life or Prohibited Altogether (68 countries)
II. To Preserve Physical Health (35 countries)
III. To Preserve Mental Health (23 countries)
IV. Socioeconomic Grounds (14 countries)
V. Without Restriction as to Reason (56 countries)
So who does Canada share company with on abortion rights? Well China for starters:
"only six nations on the list allow unrestricted abortion to the point of viability or without any specific time limitation—Canada, China, Netherlands, North Korea, United States and Vietnam. A seventh country, Singapore, sets a limit of 24 weeks, which approximates the current viability threshold in the United States."

Beck notes the viability rules for these six countries:
"Most of the nations that join the United States in permitting such unrestricted late-term abortions make for dubious company. Communist China’s efforts toward population control clash with the theory of reproductive rights underlying the Supreme Court’s abortion jurisprudence, and have led to coerced abortions in parts of that country. With respect to the other two Communist regimes on the list, Vietnam also places legal limits on family size, and North Korea is not viewed as a leader in human rights. The medical culture of the Netherlands appears to be generally less protective of fetal life than other nations, quite apart from the abortion issue. For instance, doctors in that country are much less willing than their European neighbors to provide life sustaining treatment to premature but potentially viable infants."

Dubious company indeed. Canada shares this "distinction" with three Communist regimes, China, Vietnam and North Korea. This is nothing to be proud of.

Beck says:
"Canada might seem a more conventional companion for the United States on legal questions. the current absence of an abortion law in Canada may be less a reflection of national sentiment than a result of Parliament’s failure in attempts to enact a statute meeting standards imposed by the Canadian judiciary".

I agree.

We know that every poll ever taken in Canada, regarding protection for the unborn, tells us that a majority of Canadians want some legal protection. Yet Parliament continues to abdicate its responsibility in bringing forth any such legislation.

And still Mr. Harper refuses to allow any abortion debate.

If the Prime Minister believes Canada requires unrestricted, publicly funded abortions right up until birth--an abortion regime significantly less protective of fetal life than almost every other nation in the entire world, even though our Supreme Court clearly said it is up to Parliament to come up with an abortion law--then Mr. Harper needs to explain to Canadians why he believes this.

He has never offered a principled reason for censoring a public discussion on abortion in this country. If not now Mr. Harper, then when?

Friday, November 4, 2011

We sure do want the debate

I agree with Andrea Mrozek and her three cheers for We Want the Debate.

What I don't understand is--that press release issued by the Abortion Rights Coalition of Canada's entitled Abortion: There’s Nothing to Debate.

Why would anyone issue a press release, that says there's nothing to debate, then debate the very thing, they say there's nothing to debate about?

Maybe it's because the debate they don't want to debate, is actually a really good topic to debate.

Maybe it's something like when Jean Chretien said:
"It's a proof. A proof is a proof, and when you have a good proof, it's because it's proven."

I didn't understand that either.

Monday, October 31, 2011

Will this be Harper's legacy?

In response to Local organization wants national debate on abortion and Alliance For Life Ontario's We Want the Debate campaign, I wrote the following letter to the Guelph Mercury:

Canada needs an abortion debate

October 31, 2011

We need a national debate on abortion. The reality is that if we shut down this debate, we shut down freedom of speech and we harm our democracy.

When our political leaders refuse to debate an issue that 52 per cent of Canadians want to have we, wittingly or unwittingly, are causing harm to our country. That the subject matter is abortion should make no difference. If the subject matter were murder, rape, women’s rights or what we teach our children in school, would we censure those debates? Of course not. Then why are we not allowed to debate abortion?

If Stephen Harper does not allow Canadians to have the abortion debate that we want to have, he is complicit in jeopardizing our democracy. This, in fact, may result in the law of unintended consequences and Harper may end up as being known as the prime minister who shut down democracy in Canada.

Somehow I don’t think Harper would be very pleased with a legacy such as this.

Patricia Maloney, Ottawa

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Educating Francoise

On Sept 29, MP Françoise Boivin (NDP) said some curious things in the House of Commons, regarding the funding of International Planned Parenthood and the infamous "Women's rights" ideology:

She started with this:
"Mr. Speaker, women's rights should not be open for debate, yet members of the government seem to think they are. The Supreme Court of Canada has clearly ruled that access to abortion is a fundamental right."

Actually...the Supreme Court ruled no such thing. The Morgentaler decision never stated that abortion was a fundamental right at all. And they most assuredly didn't say it was a constitutional right.

Then Ms. Boivin said:
"Either the Prime Minister has lost control of his caucus or his government's new policy is to outlaw abortion and turn back the clock on women's rights. Which is it?"'s neither. I think we all know that Mr. Harper never loses control of his caucus. Come on, you know that. And outlaw abortion? For someone like Mr. Harper, who categorically refuses to even think about abortion, never mind discuss it, it would be kind of difficult to outlaw it, don't you think?

Then this:
"Mr. Speaker, I have the impression today that we have literally gone back 20 years to a time when another Conservative government wanted to again criminalize abortion. This is not the first time that a member of the Conservative caucus has attempted to attack women's rights. This is becoming routine. Will the Prime Minister put an end to these attempts and guarantee, once and for all, women's right to choose?"

I thought we covered this Francoise. How can the Prime Minister guarantee a woman's right to choose to kill her unborn child, when no such constitutional right exists?

Then on Oct. 3 Ms .Boivin tried again:
"Mr. Speaker, last week, a Conservative member of Parliament said that his government was in the process of successfully modifying its approach to the abortion issue. On Friday, another Conservative MP said exactly the same thing. Is this government changing women's rights against their will or is the Prime Minister unable to control his caucus?"

Hmmm...I'm a woman. And last time I checked, nobody's changing my rights, either against my will or with my will.

And what about Mr. Harper losing control of his caucus? Well Francoise, like I said before, that's sort of impossible. Mr. Harper wouldn't know how to lose control of his caucus.

Mr. Harper to caucus:
"Who’s the boss?"
"you're the boss."
Mr. Harper:
I can't hear you! Who’s the boss?"
Mr. Harper:
"That's better."

Ms. Françoise Boivin (Gatineau, NDP):
"Three Conservative MPs are trying in a roundabout way to reopen the debate on abortion. In Canada, abortion has been legal for decades. Clearly, some Conservative MPs do not accept that, even though a majority of Canadians do."

Well, you have that, um, wrong again. The majority of Canadians, unlike you Francoise, are not afraid of having an abortion debate." In fact 52% of Canadians said we should not be afraid of an open debate on abortion.

And did you know Francoise, that a majority of Canadians (61%) oppose government funding of all abortions? And that 72% of Canadians want legal protections for the unborn according to a recent Environics poll?

I bet you didn't know that either, did you? I was afraid of that.

And last but not least:
"Can the Prime Minister assure us that he will not allow a private member's bill on abortion to be introduced?"

Oh dear, now I'm really confused. Is it possible that a member of Parliament does not know the definition of a Private Member's Bill? Well just in case, I'll help you out...thanks know....that place where you work?
"Public bills initiated by a Minister are referred to as "government bills", while those initiated by private Members are called "private Members' bills".

In other words, a private member's bill is for a member to introduce and not for a government to introduce. So Mr. Harper would have absolutely no say in allowing a private member's bill to be introduced or not. Understood?

So I'm just wondering Francoise, have you considered going back to school?

Friday, October 28, 2011

Our society has chosen the evil

Mark Peninga at the Association for Reformed Political Action (ARPA) Canada, does an all-encompassing and reasoned look at abortion legislation (or lack thereof) in Canada in Saving some is not a compromise - The case for advancing abortion legislation in Canada one step at a time

It's fairly lengthy at about 12 pages but well worth the read. A few notable quotes below.

Regarding the political efforts in Canada around abortion legislation:

"The bottom line is that Canadians would be shocked at how few people there are working in the genuinely political realm. There is very little strategy or long-term vision."

and this

"When pro-life politicians in this country have tried to do what is possible by advancing legislation, they are given very little support by the key organizations representing the political arm of the pro-life movement. These politicians are often singled out as "compromisers." With immense opposition from pro-abortion activists, the media, and even their own party, is it any wonder that after 20 years of this, most MPs, even pro-life MPs, are hesitant to touch the issue?"

Regarding the reality that some pro-life groups do not support "incremental legislation":

"Just because part of the pro-life community does not support many pro-life laws does not mean that we should avoid those laws and concentrate on those they do support. Although it sounds considerate, we end up trying to be nice rather than do what is really best for the unborn. Prudence requires the right law at a specific time and in a specific context. We have to be wise in those situations and boldly advance abortion legislation that would be effective in limiting evil. With lives at stake we can't devote all of our time to talking to ourselves. There are some foundational differences within the pro-life community (our view of human nature, the role of government, the end times, etc) that we will debate as long as we live. That debate should happen, but we can't put aside our political responsibility while doing so."


"If we did boldly advance abortion legislation that is in keeping with public opinion today, well over 500 lives could be saved every year"

and this

"By supporting incremental legislation, we are not in any way compromising. We are working to abolish all abortion by taking the steps humanly possible in this sin-filled and limited world. By promoting a law that bans abortion after 18 weeks, for example, we are not in any way condoning abortion up till 18 weeks. The pro-life leader quoted earlier who opposed gestational limits wrongly believes that such a law would mean we are allowing some evil to save some children. But we aren't allowing the evil. Our society has chosen the evil. The train is hurtling down the tracks whether we like it or not. Our sin-filled human hearts have chosen the evil. Our government has the responsibility to limit that evil as much as possible. If a ban on abortion is not humanly possible in such an evil society but restrictions on abortion are possible, it is the moral duty of government to enact those restrictions, to begin to engage the brakes on the train. We may not be able to stop the train dead in its tracks, but we should begin to apply the brake."

I encourage anyone who believes that "politics is the art of what is possible" to read this paper.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

No international right to abortion exists

The Special Rapporteur of the Human Rights Council of the United Nations Anand Grover wrote a paper called Right of everyone to the enjoyment of the highest attainable standard of physical and mental health.

Grover believes that women around the world should have full abortion “rights”.

But there is no such thing as an international right to abortion.

The San Jose articles--signed by a group of human rights lawyers and advocates, scholars, elected officials, diplomats, and medical and international policy experts--refutes this notion:
It is now commonplace that people around the world are told there is a new international right to abortion.

Those who receive this message are people who have the power to change abortion laws; parliamentarians, lawyers, judges and others.

Those delivering this message are influential and believable people; UN personnel, human rights lawyers, judges and others.

The assertion they make is false. No UN treaty makes abortion an international human right.”

The San Jose articles can be downloaded here.

As one would expect from an abortion manifesto such as Grover’s, there is no reference made to the object of these “women’s rights”: the destruction of unborn persons.

The pro-abortions never want to talk about that simple equation: abortion rights = dead fetuses

Abortion rights can only exist, because the pro-abortions deny that unborn persons have any value. Abortion rights become problematic when value is assigned to the fetus.

The pro-abortions also like to say the fetus is not a human being and therefore it has no rights. They can say whatever they like. It does not make it true. The unborn person is human. That is fact.

Grover never mentions the unborn child or the fetus in his 20 page document.

But Grover does talk about The Convention on the Rights of the Child, which ironically, states that:
Bearing in mind that the need to extend particular care to the child has been stated in the Geneva Declaration of the Rights of the Child of 1924 and in the Declaration of the Rights of the Child adopted by the General Assembly on 20 November 1959 and recognized in the Universal  Declaration of Human Rights, in the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (in particular in articles 23 and 24), in the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (in particular in article 10) and in the statutes and relevant instruments of specialized agencies and international organizations concerned with the welfare of children, 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)"

Grover even quotes The Convention on the Rights of the Child in his document, but conveniently ignores its above guarantee to provide legal protection to the unborn.

No international right to abortion exists.