Peter Baklinski

Canadian transgender bill faces critical vote March 20

Peter Baklinski
Peter Baklinski

OTTAWA, Ontario, March 18, 2013 (LifeSiteNews.com) – A controversial bill that would add “gender identity” and “gender expression” to Canada’s Human Rights Act and Criminal Code will face the vote in the House of Commons this Wednesday. 

Critics say that if passed, Bill C-279 will effectively abolish society's understanding of male and female. 

The preamble to the bill states: “Gender Identity means, in respect of an individual, the individual’s deeply felt internal and individual experience of gender, which may or may not correspond with the sex that the individual was assigned at birth." 

Campaign Life Coalition has slammed the bill’s definition of gender as purely subjective.

“It is an ideological, and non-scientific definition that would abolish society's understanding of male and female, transforming it from an objective, physical reality, to a creation of our minds that can change from one day to the next,” the group stated.

Numerous pro-family organizations oppose the controversial bill, dubbing it the “bathroom bill” since it could give biological men a legal alibi to use women’s bathrooms, shower rooms, and changing rooms. They worry that such a bill will lead to an increase in sexual assaults. Their worry is not unfounded. 

Last November a college in Washington state decided it would not prevent a 45-year-old man who presents himself as a transgender “female” from lounging naked in a women’s locker room, in an area frequented by girls as young as six. Teenage girls on a high school swim team were using the facilities last September when they saw "Colleen" Francis exposing male genitalia through the glass window in a sauna.

Despite the left wing push for the bill in the name of "rights and equality," high ranking representatives from the Canadian Human Rights Commission (HRC) told the Canadian Justice Committee in December that the bill “strictly speaking…isn’t necessary”.

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HRC representative Ian Fine told the committee that “the commission, the tribunal, and the courts view gender identity and gender expression as protected by the Canadian Human Rights Act [CHRA].”

Conservative MPs have said that the bill is redundant since transgender individuals already enjoy Human Rights protection, because "sex" is already a prohibited ground of discrimination.

Canada Family Action says that Bill C-279 is “much more dangerous than it appears”.

The group argues that the bill would give predators of women and girls a “legal defense”; that it would force schools to teach gender curriculum in school that would cause “gender confusion in children”; and that it would jeopardize businesses, organizations, and individuals who could “unknowingly commit Human Rights and/or Criminal Code Violations if they fail to offer ‘gender neutral’ facilities”.

Campaign Life Coalition expects that if the bill passes in the house, then it will sail through the Senate as well.

“Then Canada's laws will actually affirm and promote the dangerous philosophy that a biological male can actually be a woman, if he simply feels that way in his mind. The law will send the message to all in society that one's physical anatomy is irrelevant to whether you are a boy or a girl.” 

“Politicians, by passing Bill C-279, would unleash unintended consequences that are seriously damaging to freedom of speech, freedom of religion, the personal security of women and even to the individuals who suffer with the psychological problem known as Gender Identity Disorder (GID).” 

Canada Family Action is urging concerned Canadians to contact their MPs and tell them to vote against Bill C-279 “before it's too late”. The group is also urging people to contact the 16 Conservative MPs who did not vote on the bill last year when it passed its second reading. 

“Their absence allowed Bill C-279 to pass 2nd reading with the help of the 15 Conservative MPs who voted to support it,” wrote Brian Rushfeldt, CFA president, in a press release. 

“Pick up your phone right now and call one of the Conservative MPs who didn't even vote on the Gender/Bathroom Bill and tell them to stand up for the women and girls in their riding by voting NO to Bill C-279.” 

The Conservative MPs who failed to vote on the bill are the following:

John Baird - Ottawa West - Nepean - 613-990-7720 - bairdj@parl.gc.ca
Ryan Leef - Yukon - 867-668-6565 - ryan.leef@parl.gc.ca
Ed Fast - Abbotsford - 604-557-7888 - ed@edfast.ca
Ed Komarnicki - Souris - Moose Mountain - 306-634-3000 - komare@parl.gc.ca
Diane Ablonczy - Calgary - Nose Hill - 403-282-7980 - calgary@ablonczy.com
Colin Mayes - Okanagan - Shuswap - 250-260-5020 - colin.mayes@parl.gc.ca
Peter Goldring - Edmonton East - 780-495-3261 - goldrp1@parl.gc.ca (Independent Conservative)
Stephen Woodworth - Kitchener Centre - 519-741-2001 - stephen.woodworth@parl.gc.ca
Rona Ambrose - Edmonton - Spruce Grove - 780-495-7705 - rona.ambrose.c1a@parl.gc.ca
Maxime Bernier - Beauce - 418-227-2171 - bernim1a@parl.gc.ca
Deepak Obhrai - Calgary East - 403-207-3030 - obhrad@parl.gc.ca
Pierre Poilievre - Nepean - Carleton - 613-990-4300 - pierre.poilievre@parl.gc.ca
James Moore - Port Moody - Westwood - Port Coquitlam - 604-937-5650 - james.moore@parl.gc.ca
Steven Blaney - Lévis—Bellechasse - 418-830-0500 - blanes1b@parl.gc.ca
Kellie Leitch - Simcoe - Grey - 705-435-1809 - kellie.leitch@parl.gc.ca
 

The Conservative MPs who supported the bill are the following:

Shelly Glover - Saint Boniface - 204-983-3183 - shelly@shellyglover.ca
Lisa Raitt - Halton - 905-693-0166 - lisa.raitt@parl.gc.ca
Bruce Stanton - Simcoe North - 705-327-0513 - bruce.stanton.c1d@parl.gc.ca
Bernard Valcourt - Madawaska Restigouche - 506-739-4600 - bernard.valcourt@parl.gc.ca
Cathy McLeod - Kamloops Thompson - 250-851-4991 - cathy.mcleod.c1@parl.gc.ca
Chris Alexander - Ajax Pickering - 905-426-6808 - chris.alexander@parl.gc.ca
Kerry-Lynne Findlay - Delta Richmond - 604-940-8040 - kerry-lynne.findlay@parl.gc.ca
Laurie Hawn - Edmonton Centre - 780-442-1888 - laurie.hawn.c1@parl.gc.ca
Gerald Keddy - South Shore St Margaret - 902-637-3945 - keddyg@ns.sympatico.ca
David Wilks - Kootenay Columbia - 250-417-2250 - david.wilks@parl.gc.ca
Bernard Trottier - Etobicoke Lake - 416-251-5510 - bernard.trottier@parl.gc.ca
Michelle Rempel - Calgary Centre North - 403-216-7777 - michelle.rempel@parl.gc.ca
John Duncan - Vancouver Island North - 250-338-9381 - john.duncan@parl.gc.ca
Jim Flaherty - Whitby Oshawa - 905-665-8182 - jim@jimflahertymp.ca
Michael Chong - Wellington Halton Hills - 519-843-7344 - michael.chong@parl.gc.ca

Visit Campaign Life Coalition's website to learn more about the implications of Bill C-279.

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Jeanne Smits, Paris correspondent

Belgium approves euthanasia for rapist serving life sentence

Jeanne Smits, Paris correspondent
By Jeanne Smits

Belgium’s Minister of Justice approved a euthanasia request Monday from a convicted rapist serving a life sentence.

The Brussels court of appeal will review the case September 29, but Belgian media report it is expected simply to record the existence of the agreement between the man and the government.

This would not be the first euthanasia of a Belgian prisoner – a terminally ill man who had already spent 27 years in jail was legally killed two years ago – but in the case of Frank Van Den Bleeken, the euthanasia request is being linked to the conditions of his imprisonment.

Van Den Bleeken, 50, has spent close to 30 years in prison. He was sentenced to life-long imprisonment for several counts of rape, one of them followed by murder. He has been declared irresponsible for these acts because of psychiatric disorders and does not want to be released from prison, considering himself to be “a danger for society.” Despite having repeatedly asked for psychiatric treatment, none has been forthcoming in the absence of any Belgian institution prepared to take up this sort of patient.

The convicted rapist says his psychological suffering is “intolerable” and it is on these grounds that three doctors decided last May that Van Den Bleeken should be entitled to euthanasia – even though he has also asked for a transfer to a Dutch institution where psychiatrically ill criminals receive adequate treatment and care.

He presented both demands to the minister of Justice via an emergency procedure. The Brussels appeal court decided that the minister, Maggie De Block, was not competent to order a transfer to the Netherlands but that she could decide to grant his request for euthanasia. The decision is being called a purely “medical” one by the minister who told the press that she confined herself to following the doctors’ opinion.

A previous euthanasia request made by Van Den Bleeken three years ago was rejected on the grounds that all had not been done to ensure that he would suffer less and that other options than death were available.

Now, even though it is clear that the prisoner would find more humane conditions of detention in nearby Holland, that he is conscious of the gravity of the acts he commits under the pressure of his mental illness, and that he is in need of medical care, the decision to make him die reads as a further trivialization of euthanasia in a country where an ever-increasing amount of psychological motives are being accepted to justify “mercy-killing.”

As in all the states of the European Union, the death penalty does not exist; it was abolished in Belgium in 1996. Rapists and murderers can find themselves sentenced to life-long sentences with no hope at all of ever being freed, a perspective which some find worse than death.

Since Van Den Bleeken’s story received media coverage, including a televised interview at the end of 2013, fifteen other prisoners have contacted the “UL-Team,” an information center for end-of-life questions, euthanasia expert Wim Distelmans told the media this Tuesday. He said those numbers are expected to rise. Distelmans is known for his support and active participation in cases of euthanasia for psychological reasons.

No date has been fixed for Van Den Bleeken’s death but his family has indicated that a doctor willing to perform the act has been found. Once the appeals court has given its ruling the prisoner will be allowed to leave the Turnhout prison where he is interned at present, and will be transferred to an unnamed hospital where he will be able to say goodbye to his family before receiving a lethal injection.

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Sen. Rob Portman, R-OH http://portman.senate.gov
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First GOP senator to back marriage redefinition may run for president in 2016

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By Ben Johnson

The first Republican U.S. senator to support same-sex “marriage” is considering running for president in 2016 – if he is re-elected this year.

Sen. Rob Portman, the junior senator from Ohio, told reporters he would decide about campaigning for the GOP presidential nod during a recent visit to New Hampshire, home of the first in the nation primary.

“I’m focused, as you can tell, on 2014 and on doing my job as a senator,” he said, according to The Daily Caller. “After the election, I'll take a look at it.”

Portman became the first Republican senator to support same-sex “marriage” last March, citing a two-year “evolution” that took place after he learned his son, Will, is homosexual. He announced his change of heart shortly after he “held a dozen meetings with big New York donors” who did not believe the GOP sufficiently championed the cause of redefining marriage, in his capacity as vice chairman of finance for the National Republican Senatorial Committee (NRSC), according to Politico.

That provoked a backlash from pro-family leaders in the state, who warned Portman's move – which is at odds with the Republican Party platform – would splinter the Republican Party.”

That splintering could be seen on the pages of Ohio newspapers this month.

Lori Viars, vice president of Warren County Right to Life, wrote a column entitled, “Why Conservatives Are Dumping Portman.” She recounted asking then-Congressman Rob Portman if he would vote for the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) in the 1990s.

“I thought he'd give me a quick yes and that I'd be on my way in search of air conditioning. But Portman would not answer my question. I pressed him, and again he deflected,” she wrote. “On my third (more emphatic) try, he got angry with me. He clearly did not want to take a position on DOMA. At the time, his son would have been in preschool.”

“Whatever his reason, Portman's flip-flop puts his presidential ambition at a disadvantage,” Viars wrote.

That garnered a ripping riposte from Mike Gonidakis of Ohio Right to Life, which was published as a letter to the editor. He accused Viars of “recklessly question[ing] Sen. Rob Portman's commitment to the pro-life cause.” Portman has a zero percent vote rating from NARAL Pro-Choice America and, while representing his conservative southwestern Ohio district voted against taxpayer funding for abortion at home and overseas, in favor of the partial birth abortion ban and protecting babies who are born alive during botched abortions, and against human cloning.

Still, Viars is not alone in distancing herself from the senator. Ohio's social conservative group, Citizens for Community Values, now lists Portman as an "unacceptable candidate."

In August 2013, Cleveland Right to Life criticized Rob Portman's stance. National Right to Life Committee (NRLC) President Carol Tobias sent a letter to CRTL, saying it had chosen to “disaffiliate” itself with NRLC because it had “issued public criticisms of and implicit political threats against a U.S. Senator who has supported the right-to-life position on every vote that has come before the Senate, and who is a sponsor of major NRLC-backed bills – because the chapter disagrees with his position on a non-right-to-life issue.”

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Aside from his stint in the U.S. Senate, the 58-year-old served 12 years in the House of Representatives and acted as U.S. Trade Representative and Director of Management and Budget under the George W. Bush administration, holding each office for one year, respectively. He largely favored free trade and voted for the 2002 authorization for the use of force against Iraq.

He has prepared presidential and vice presidential candidates for debates and has twice been considered for the vice presidential nomination, in 2008 and 2012.

Polls show Portman a virtual lock for re-election to the Senate. But the largely unknown, not especially charismatic senator does not register in polls for the presidential nomination of a party that is still committed to the traditional concept of marriage and family. 

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A topless activist with Femen attacks Belgian Archbishop Andrè-Joseph Leonard, who is known for his strong pro-life and pro-family stance.
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Why are pro-abortion protesters always taking their clothes off?

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By Jonathon van Maren

I’ve seen a lot of bizarre responses to pro-life activism. There’s the crude picket signs, the illiterate chants, the flashes of violence, the incoherent threats that so often seem to involve used tampons, and even activists dressed up like giant genitalia.

But there is one phenomenon that never ceases to stagger me with its counterproductive stupidity and moral blindness: The increasing prevalence of “feminist” protestors, almost exclusively women, stripping down to “protest” something—usually protection for the pre-born or some other dissent from the totalitarian death cult of the Sexual Revolution.

When people ask me what the weirdest response to pro-life work is and I try to explain this phenomenon, they find it hard to believe. So do I. But yet it happens, time and time again.

The suicidal tendencies of modern-day feminism would be almost laughable if they were not so depressing.

One student stripped down and sat on a folding chair in front of our pro-life display at the University of British Columbia. A few protestors decided to protest the launch of our 2012 national tour by going topless. Then, at a presentation in London, Ontario, a bunch of pro-abortion protesters showed up at a counter-protest organized by the Canadian Auto Worker’s Union, sans clothing. And of course, at last year’s March for Life a topless Femen protestor flung herself at a remarkably composed Catholic bishop as he spoke to the crowd, shrieking “F*** your morals!”

You’d think such behaviour would attract ire rather than admiration. But this is 2014 and most of our municipal governments use our taxpayer’s cash basically to fund a day dedicated to that type of behaviour when the Pride Parade rolls around.

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Instead, these women are now generally referred to as “brave.” Even the popular, but tiresomely far-left website Upworthy recently pushed a video with a street activist protesting harassment by misogynist pigs by standing on the street in her lingerie. (Little tip: Protesting the fact that some misogynists define you by your body by voluntarily showing them what they wanted to see in the first place isn't defiance, it's acquiescence. Protesting the fact that these guys aren't treating you with dignity by acting like you have none is counter-productive. “That guy crudely suggested he wants to see me naked! Well, I’ll show him! By showing him exactly what he wants to see! Wait…”)

A bit of research into the infamous nude activist group Femen (“Our mission is protest, our weapon is bare breasts”) shows just how exploitative (inadvertent though it may sometimes be) this entire phenomenon is. In recent documentary the group’s leader, Viktor Svyatski, admitted that he had perhaps started the group to “get girls,” and that he carefully selected only the most attractive girls for his group. The documentary also revealed that Svyatski had described the Femen girls as “weak,” and was often verbally abusive with them.

Again, the suicidal tendencies of modern-day feminism would be almost laughable if they were not so depressing.

But the phenomenon of public nudity is also more than just incoherent protest—it is a way of forcing people to accept any and all manifestations of the Sexual Revolution. As I noted some time ago:  The public is now regularly subjected to crude and wildly exhibitionist “Gay Pride Parades” and “Slut Walks.” These are not considered to be optional festivals hosted by tiny minority groups. No, politicians who refuse to attend are labelled as heretics by the high priests of the New Moral Order, which is of course not an order at all, but a proud lack thereof.

Liberal activists don’t want the State to be outside the bedroom anymore, they want the State in the bedroom—loudly applauding the acts they see taking place, refraining from any judgment but one of approval, and paying for pills and bits of rubber to ensure that such acts do not go awry and result in reproduction or infection.

Your prayers are not welcome in public, but your privates are. The Emperor has no clothes, and is quite enjoying it—so long as the chilly breezes of moral truth don’t leak out of drafty cathedrals to cause discomfort.  

There may be hope on the horizon, as indicated by the wild popularity of such books as Wendy ShaIit’s A Return to Modesty, as well as increasing disinterest in topless beaches in places like France. Some “feminists” have responded to such trends with irritation, grumbling that all the hard-won ground they had fought for is being spurned by the ungrateful brats of today. But perhaps, instead, many women are realizing that allowing men to freely objectify them in public is not all it’s cracked up to be.

Perhaps people have begun to rediscover a human value that was once enormously prized, but now almost forgotten: Dignity.

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