Kristine Kruszelnicki

Canada, the land of diversity! (But keep your beliefs on abortion to yourself)

Kristine Kruszelnicki
By Kristine Kruszelnicki

October 3, 2012 (SecularProlife.org) - Welcome to Canada. We’re a land of freedom and democracy. Unless you want to discuss the question of when human life begins. We don’t debate abortion. 

Oh it’s not that we’re all agreed on abortion. Depending on the polls and the phraseology of the questions, a significant percent of the population disagrees with status-quo - once they are made aware that abortion is legal here throughout all nine months, for any and all reasons, and is paid for by Canadian tax dollars. Since 1988, when the Supreme Court struck down the unevenly applied abortion laws that had been introduced in Prime Minister Trudeau’s 1969 Omnibus bill, Canada has remained one of few countries in the world to have absolutely no laws on abortion. Most Canadians don’t know this is our dark reality, because we’re Canadians - we’re polite.  We will kill 115,000 preborn boys and girls annually, but please don’t ask us to talk about or even question it. We don’t do that.

When the Supreme Court struck down the faulty laws in 1988, every last one of its judges said that there should be a law governing abortion in Canada, and that it was up to parliament to determine what this law should be. Nearly twenty-five years later, Canadian parliament has remained largely silent on the issue of abortion. A handful of private member’s bills have been introduced, (including an unborn victims of violence bill that would have made it a separate crime to kill a woman’s wanted fetus in an act of violence against her) but none have ever been moved into law.

This year, a private member’s bill (motion 312) was introduced by conservative MP Stephen Woodworth. The bill merely asked that a committee be put into place to study modern prenatal knowledge and re-examine Canada’s 400 year-old definition of a human being.  While the motion does not directly address abortion, the findings of such a committee would be of utter importance, due to the fact that the Canadian Charter of Rights grants life and personhood to all human beings. Currently, the Criminal Code of Canada states that a child becomes a human being only at the moment of complete birth. Who needs to study science when we have magical lines like these? 

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Motion 312 has now been defeated twice. On September 26 2012, Woodworth’s final appeal was rejected again, with 91 Members of Parliament voting in favour of allowing debate on the question of when human life begins, and 203 asking that the issue not be reopened at all. While one MP, Rona Ambrose, Minister For The Status Of Women, has caught a lot of flak for having dared to vote in favour of a debate on fetal rights (apparently she’s “unfit to defend the rights of women” if she questions sex selection abortions in Canada), other MP’s have argued that “society has moved on” and decried the “blatant attack on a woman’s right to choose.”   

The decision hardly comes as a surprise. In fact, it’s almost certainly an admission of guilt. Opponents of the bill seem to already know that an inquiry into the science of fetal development will threaten “the right to choose.” After all, if supporters of abortion were confident that life began at birth and that nothing new has been added to scientific understanding of human fetal life in 400 years, why should this inquiry frighten them?   

Parliament is not the only place that refuses to debate abortion in Canada. In 2008, the Canadian Federation of Students, a body that represents all student federations across the country, enacted a pro-choice policy that enables campus student federations to ban pro-life clubs from even existing. One after another, universities from coast to coast have denied and revoked tuition-paying pro-life students their right to assemble as official clubs on campus, while abortion advocates, like Canadian Abortion Rights Action League Joyce Arthur, compare pro-life clubs to “neo-Nazis and white supremacists”. Pro-life presentations that do take place are drowned out with shouts or daycare songs (video: St Mary’s University in Halifax, video: McGill University in Montreal) or brazenly vandalized (video: University of British Columbia), with campus police intervening by shutting down the presentation (not the violent protestors) as the source of conflict. 

Student groups that continue to run pro-life events without the official sanction of their student union, find themselves silenced by formal complaints, and further restricted by official university orders and legal threat. Pro-life students at Carleton University and at the University of Calgary were arrested and charged with trespassing on their own campuses, after violating orders to cease their presentations (video: Carleton University, video: U of Calgary). This is Canada, where the majority’s “right to not be offended” or challenged with an opposing view trumps a minority’s right to free speech. At least on this issue.

More arrests are made outside of Canada’s abortion clinics, where 500 foot bubble-zones in several provinces make it illegal to protest, stand or pray within blocks of an abortion clinic. The elderly Linda Gibbons has spent more than nine years in jail over the past couple decades, for repeatedly standing outside a Toronto clinic with a simple sign featuring a baby and the words: “Why Mom, when I have so much love to give?” Young adult Mary Wagner has also done jail time for interacting with abortion-minded clients or for handing women roses as they entered the clinic. Canadian protestors can stop traffic, get angry, even get violent without necessarily facing charges. The right to protest is a highlight of Canadian democracy! Unless you’re asking for fetal rights. That’s not cool. Off to jail you go!   

So welcome to Canada. Please feel free to express yourself here, for we are proud of our diversity. We will boast of Canada as a mosaic, a beautiful blend of cultures, values and beliefs. We will herald our democratic government where we are free to petition our representatives and trust that all our voices will be heard. But please be sure your beliefs toe the majority line and that your views aren’t controversial or offensive to anyone else. Because this is Canada. We don’t debate abortion here. 

“I am a Canadian, free to speak without fear, free to worship in my own way, free to stand for what I think right, free to oppose what I believe wrong…  This heritage of freedom I pledge to uphold for myself and all mankind.”
— John Diefenbaker;  13th Prime Minister of Canada.

Reprinted with permission from Secular Pro-life.

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PBS defends decision to air pro-abortion documentary ‘After Tiller’

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By Dustin Siggins

Under pressure for showing the pro-abortion documentary "After Tiller" on Labor Day, PBS' "POV" affiliate has defended the decision in response to an inquiry from LifeSiteNews.

The producers of the film say their goal with the documentary, which tells the stories of four late-term abortion doctors after the killing of infamous late-term abortionist George Tiller, is to "change public perception of third-trimester abortion providers by building a movement dedicated to supporting their right to work with a special focus on maintaining their safety.” 

POV told LifeSiteNews, "We do believe that 'After Tiller' adds another dimension to an issue that is being debated widely." Asked if POV will show a pro-life documentary, the organization said that it "does not have any other films currently scheduled on this issue. POV received almost 1000 film submissions each year through our annual call for entries and we welcome the opportunity to consider films with a range of points of view."

When asked whether POV was concerned about alienating its viewership -- since PBS received millions in federal tax dollars in 2012 and half of Americans identify as pro-life -- POV said, "The filmmakers would like the film to add to the discussion around these issues. Abortion is already a legal procedure."

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"This is an issue that people feel passionately about and will have a passionate response to. We are hopeful that the majority of people can see it for what it is, another lens on a very difficult issue." 

In addition to the documentary, POV has written materials for community leaders and teachers to share. A cursory examination of the 29-page document, which is available publicly, appears to include links to outside sources that defend Roe v. Wade, an examination of the constitutional right to privacy, and "a good explanation of the link between abortion law and the right to privacy," among other information.

Likewise, seven clips recommended for student viewing -- grades 11 and beyond -- include scenes where couples choose abortion because the children are disabled. Another shows pro-life advocates outside a doctor's child's school, and a third is described as showing "why [one of the film's doctors] chose to offer abortion services and includes descriptions of what can happen when abortion is illegal or unavailable, including stories of women who injured themselves when they tried to terminate their own pregnancies and children who were abused because they were unwanted."

Another clip "includes footage of protesters, as well as news coverage of a hearing in the Nebraska State Legislature in which abortion opponents make reference to the idea that a fetus feels pain." The clip's description fails to note that it is a scientifically proven fact that unborn children can feel pain.

The documentary is set to air on PBS at 10 p.m. Eastern on Labor Day.

Kirsten Andersen contributed to this article.

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He defended ‘real’ marriage, and then was beheaded for it

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By Pete Baklinski

A Christian man was executed during the night by a high-profile ruler after making an uncompromising defense of real marriage.

The Christian, who was renowned for his holiness, had told the ruler in public that his relationship with his partner was “against the law” of God. The Christian’s words enraged the ruler’s partner who successfully plotted to have him permanently silenced.

John the Baptist was first imprisoned before he was beheaded. The Catholic Church honors him today, August 29, as a martyr and saint.

While John’s death happened a little less than 2,000 years ago, his heroic stance for real marriage is more pertinent today than ever before.

According to the Gospel of Mark, the ruler Herod had ‘married’ his brother’s wife Herodias. When John told Herod with complete frankness, “It is against the law for you to have your brother’s wife,” Herodias became “furious” with him to the point of wanting him killed for his intolerance, bullying, and hate-speech.

Herodias found her opportunity to silence John by having her daughter please Herod during a dance at a party. Herod offered the girl anything she wanted. The daughter turned to her mother for advice, and Herodias said to ask for John’s head on a platter.

Those who fight for real marriage today can learn three important lessons from John’s example.

  1. Those proudly living in ungodly and unnatural relationships — often referred to in today’s sociopolitical sphere as ‘marriage’ — will despise those who tell them what they are doing is wrong. Real marriage defenders must expect opposition to their message from the highest levels.
  2. Despite facing opposition, John was not afraid to defend God’s plan for marriage in the public square, even holding a secular ruler accountable to this plan. John, following the third book of the Hebrew Bible (Leviticus 20:21), held that a man marrying the wife of his brother was an act of “impurity” and therefore abhorrent to God. Real marriage defenders must boldly proclaim today that God is the author of marriage, an institution he created to be a life-long union between one man and one woman from which children arise and in which they are best nurtured. Marriage can be nothing more, nothing less.
  3. John did not compromise on the truth of marriage as revealed by God, even to the point of suffering imprisonment and death for his unpopular position. Real marriage defenders must never compromise on the truth of marriage, even if the government, corporate North America, and the entire secular education system says otherwise. They must learn to recognize the new “Herodias” of today who despises those raising a voice against her lifestyle. They must stand their ground no matter what may come, no matter what the cost.

John the Baptist was not intolerant or a bigot, he simply lived the word of God without compromise, speaking the word of truth when it was needed, knowing that God’s way is always the best way. Were John alive today, he would be at the forefront of the grassroots movement opposing the social and political agenda to remake marriage in the image of man.

Click "like" if you want to defend true marriage.

If he were alive today he might speak simple but eloquent words such as, “It is against God’s law for two men or two women to be together as a husband and wife in marriage. Marriage can only be between a man and a woman.” 

He would most likely be hated. He would be ridiculed. He would surely have the human rights tribunals throwing the book at him. But he would be speaking the truth and have God as his ally. 

The time may not be far off when those who defend real marriage, like John, will be presented with the choice of following Caesar or making the ultimate sacrifice. May God grant his faithful the grace to persevere in whatever might come. St. John the Baptist, pray for us!

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The Wunderlich family Mike Donnelly / Home School Legal Defence Association
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German homeschoolers regain custody of children, vow to stay and fight for freedom

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By Thaddeus Baklinski

One year to the day since a team of 20 social workers, police officers, and special agents stormed a homeschooling family’s residence near Darmstadt, Germany, and forcibly removed all four of the family’s children, aged 7 to 14, a state appeals court has returned custody of the children to their parents.

The reason given for the removal was that parents Dirk and Petra Wunderlich continued to homeschool their children in defiance of a German ban on home education.

The children were returned three weeks after being taken, following an international outcry spearheaded by the Home School Legal Defense Association.

However, a lower court imposed the condition on the parents that their children were required to attend state schools in order for them to be released, and took legal custody of the children in order to prevent the family from leaving the country.

In a decision that was still highly critical of the parents and of homeschooling, the appeals court decided that the action of the lower court in putting the children in the custody of the state was “disproportional” and ordered complete custody returned to the parents, according to a statement by the HSLDA.

The Wunderlichs, who began homeschooling again when the court signaled it would rule this way, said they were very pleased with the result, but noted that the court’s harsh words about homeschooling indicated that their battle was far from over.

“We have won custody and we are glad about that,” Dirk said.

“The court said that taking our children away was not proportionate—only because the authorities should apply very high fines and criminal prosecution instead. But this decision upholds the absurd idea that homeschooling is child endangerment and an abuse of parental authority.”

The Wunderlichs are now free to emigrate to another country where homeschooling is legal, if they choose, but they said they intend to remain in Germany and work for educational freedom.

“While we no longer fear that our children will be taken away as long as we are living in Hessen, it can still happen to other people in Germany,” Dirk said. “Now we fear crushing fines up to $75,000 and jail. This should not be tolerated in a civilized country.”

Petra Wunderlich said, "We could not do this without the help of HSLDA,” but cautioned that, “No family can fight the powerful German state—it is too much, too expensive."

"If it were not for HSLDA and their support, I am afraid our children would still be in state custody. We are so grateful and thank all homeschoolers who have helped us by helping HSLDA.”

HSLDA’s Director for Global Outreach, Michael Donnelly, said he welcomed the ruling but was concerned about the court’s troubling language.

“We welcome this ruling that overturns what was an outrageous abuse of judicial power,” he said.

“The lower court decision to take away legal custody of the children essentially imprisoned the Wunderlich family in Germany. But this decision does not go far enough. The court has only grudgingly given back custody and has further signaled to local authorities that they should still go after the Wunderlichs with criminal charges or fines.”

Donnelly pointed out that such behavior in a democratic country is problematic.

“Imprisonment and fines for homeschooling are outside the bounds of what free societies that respect fundamental human rights should tolerate,” he explained.

“Freedom and fundamental human rights norms demand respect for parental decision making in education. Germany’s state and national policies that permit banning home education must be changed.

"Such policies from a leading European democracy not only threaten the rights of tens of thousands of German families but establish a dangerous example that other countries may be tempted to follow,” Donnelly warned.

HSLDA Chairman Michael Farris said that acting on behalf of the Wunderlichs was an important stand for freedom.

“The Wunderlichs are a good and decent family whose basic human rights were violated and are still threatened,” Farris said.

“Their fight is our fight," Farris stressed, "and we will continue to support those who stand against German policy banning homeschooling that violates international legal norms. Free people cannot tolerate such oppression and we will do whatever we can to fight for families like the Wunderlichs both here in the United States and abroad. We must stand up to this kind of persecution where it occurs or we risk seeing own freedom weakened.”

Visit the HSLDA website dedicated to helping the Wunderlich family and other German homeschoolers here.

Contact the German embassy in the U.S. here.

Contact the German embassy in Canada here.

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