KITCHENER, Ontario, June 27, 2012 (LifeSiteNews.com) – As pro-life MP Stephen Woodworth tends his ailing mother, he was forced Tuesday to spend much of the day defending himself over Twitter from a fake quote attributed to him that “rape is God’s will.”
In a post that was retweeted at least 10,000 times, marijuana activist and pro-abortion blogger Russell Barth put up a picture of Woodworth with a quote stating: “Rape is God’s will. Abortion is not. It’s in The Bible.”
But questioned on it by a Guelph newspaper columnist Luisa D’Amato, Barth “crumpled up like a used tissue,” in D’Amato’s words, and claimed it was a “paraphrase” meant as “satire.”
“That’s just satire,” he said. “I’m paraphrasing. I can take it down. It’s called satire. He hasn’t contacted me … I apologize for putting it up but I want him to know that it’s just satire … I will issue an apology on my blog.” D’Amato notes that while they were still speaking Barth was attempting to take down the post.
Barth claimed his attack on Woodworth is “part of the perils of being in public life.”
After Barth’s post, Woodworth was bombarded with tweets attacking him over the false quotes, with some denouncing him as a “rabid dog” and a “prick”. Among the retweeters was Alberta NDP candidate Aditya Rao.
Woodworth defended himself to tweeters dozens of times on Tuesday, writing, “It is a bald-faced lie. Some of my opponents have no shame!”
The same day he issued a press release calling the claims “entirely fictitious.”
“My record as a long-time supporter of The Sexual Assault Support Centre of Waterloo Region and Women’s Crisis Services of Waterloo Region speaks for itself,” said Woodworth. “Those who know me know that this fictitious quote is utter nonsense.”
“It is a challenge of public policy discussion that opponents can misrepresent your views, and some of my opponents have no shame,” he added. “It is one reason why I strongly urge people to stick to the merits of specific policy proposals rather than getting distracted by personality politics, which lends itself to such slander.”
Barth did win support from pro-abortion blogger Fern Hill, who claimed the quote, though false, “seems to reflect [Woodworth’s] view of the issue.” She made the charge by claiming that pro-lifers’ opposition to abortion in cases of rape is tantamount to support for rape.
Woodworth has been under constant attack in recent months over his private members motion to examine the humanity of the unborn child.
M-312 asks for a special committee to study section 223 of the Criminal Code, which states that a child only becomes a “human being” once he or she has fully proceeded from the womb.
The motion was scheduled for a crucial vote on June 13th, but Woodworth delayed it to the fall when his mother fell seriously ill.
“What a waste of his precious time this Twitter attack was. And what a senseless aggravation at a difficult point in his life,” writes D’Amato.