Friday October 15, 2010

Arrested Carleton Pro-Life Students to Host Controversial Talk on Campus

By Patrick B. Craine

OTTAWA, Ontario, October 15, 2010 ( – Following the arrest of five pro-life students last week at Carleton University, the Carleton pro-life club is inviting the public to a talk on campus this Monday where they will explain the message behind their “censored” display.

“We’re inviting anyone who’s heard about the controversy over our arrest and who wants to know why we are so willing to speak up for the unborn, to hear the presentation,” said Ruth Lobo, president of Carleton Lifelife and one of the arrested students. “We know that we won’t be able to reach as many people from a closed room—which is why we’ve been fighting so hard to get the debate out in the open—but we want people to hear our side of the story.”

The talk, called “Echoes of the Holocaust,” will be delivered by Jose Ruba of the Canadian Centre for Bio-ethical Reform. He will examine the similarities between abortion and past injustices such as the Rwandan and Cambodian Genocides and the Holocaust. The presentation is so controversial that abortion advocates shouted him down last year at McGill University in Montreal and Saint Mary’s University in Halifax.

“The talk will get some people upset,” said Ruba, who is also a Carleton University alumnus. “However, the comparison hinges on one essential question – what are the unborn? If the unborn are not human beings then the comparisons are insensitive but if they are human beings, then they are inevitable.”

Lobo and four other students were arrested by Ottawa city police on Carleton’s campus on October 4, and fined $130 each for trespassing. They plan to contest the tickets.

At the time of the arrest the students were preparing to set up the Genocide Awareness Project (GAP), which compares abortion to past atrocities through graphic imagery, as a protest in the university’s Tory Quad. The university had denied them the use of that central outdoor location, which has been open to other groups, instead telling them that they could only set up the display in an out-of-the-way campus building.

Lobo, a 4th-year student in Human Rights, pointed out that very few people are upset when the atrocities in Rwanda, Cambodia, or Nazi-occupied Europe are compared. “That tells me that people are upset with the pro-life presentation because they don’t believe the unborn are human beings like us,” she said. “We hope this presentation will help others understand why we need to have this debate publicly, out in the open.”

The presentation will be held on Monday, October 18th beginning at 7 pm. at the Tory building, room 360. Audience members will be welcome to ask questions at the end of the presentation.

See related coverage:

Canadian MP Decries ‘Censorship’ at Carleton U over Pro-Life Arrests

Carleton University Rep.: Pro-Life Students Arrested for Trespassing because of Content

Five Canadian Pro-Life University Students Arrested for Setting up Display

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