Photo Credits: DARREN BROWN/Ottawa Sun
The mayor of Ottawa, Jim Watson, has signed a proclamation recognizing a Respect for Life Day that coincides with the National March for Life, an anti-abortion march, which is expecting some 10,000 people on Parliament Hill today. The proclamation for Respect for Life Day calls on the community to get involved in protecting “the rights of people in Canada, including the unborn.”
Many who are for unlimited, unrestricted, publicly funded abortion on demand see this as the thin edge of the wedge that will inevitably lead to an anti-abortion private member’s bill in the House of Commons and ultimately the unveiling of the Tories’ much-to-be-feared secret agenda. And to that I say, balderdash!
Most European countries have legal restrictions on abortions, despite being as democratic and freedom-loving as we are. Here are some examples: Britain 24 weeks, France 12 weeks, Germany 12 weeks, Belgium 12 weeks, Denmark 12 weeks, Sweden 18 weeks, Norway 18 weeks and Italy 13 weeks. Not one of these countries have a reputation of being repressive or for being particularly conservative in nature.
Surely there is some room for legislation in Canada where no law at all exists regarding the willful termination of a pregnancy at any time and for any reason. Our government places restrictions on every other personal right. As far as I can see, the right to abort seems the only absolute right granted any Canadian citizen.
This is curious, is it not, when public opinion polls continue to show only a minority of Canadians agree with the status quo of no legal protection until a child is born. And a recent poll1 by Abacus Data confirms once again that the majority of Canadians believe there should be some restrictions on abortion, with only 22 per cent agreeing with the status quo. According to Abacus, 27 per cent of Canadians said that human life should be protected from conception onwards, 21 per cent said there should be protection after three months of pregnancy and 11 per cent wanted protection after six months.
Moreover, the poll shows that 63 per cent of women believe in restricting abortion either before or at the sixth month compared to 56 per cent of men.
So, if 59 per cent of Canadians—63 per cent of women—believe there should be some restrictions on abortion as pregnancy proceeds, and I belong to this group, why should our legislation not reflect this?
Over to you, Conservative Party of Canada and the many other non-Conservative MPs who we know do not believe in unrestricted abortion, but lack the courage to say so.
1From April 28 to April 29,2011, Abacus Data Inc. conducted an online survey among 1,007 randomly selected Canadian adults from an online panel of over 400,000 Canadians. The margin of error—which measures sampling variability—is comparable to +/- 3.2%, 19 times out of 20.]