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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Sofia Vazquez-Mellado

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11-year-old in Uruguay refuses to abort after rape

Sofia Vazquez-Mellado
By Sofia Vazquez-Mellado

MONTEVIDEO, Uruguay, May 25, 2015 (LifeSiteNews.com) – An 11-year-old girl in Uruguay is making headlines for refusing to abort after being raped by a 41-year-old relative. Pro-abortion organizations in the country are using the case to ask for a broadening in the law, which allows for abortion up until 12 weeks gestation, 14 weeks in cases of rape, and up to 9 months when the life or health of the mother are at risk or when the baby is “unviable.”

Local media report that the girl, who is 18 weeks pregnant, lived with her abuser for over a year prior to the pregnancy. Her mother is now asking authorities to make her abort, but according to the local newspaper La Diaria, a team of psychiatrists from Uruguay’s Child and Adolescent Institute (INAU) has said that “the girl’s position has been confirmed without a doubt: she wishes to be a mother.”

According to her relatives, the girl suffers from a mild mental incapacity, although she is not considered handicapped.

In a press conference, Susana Muñiz, president for the Association of State Health Services and former minister of health, said: “An 11-year-old girl obviously has a body not prepared to be pregnant, with a very small uterus.”

However, according to Monica Silva, head of the INAU’s Health Division, “There is no risk to the life of the girl nor that of the baby. We cannot force her to abort.”

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“Even if her mother wants it, it would be inhuman to force her to abort,” continued Silva. “The fact that there was a rape doesn’t allow me to force her to abort. This [aborting] may seem like a protection of her rights but it is against the girl’s will.”

Nevertheless, a press release “demanding” that the girl abort “immediately” was issued by several pro-abortion NGOs soon after, on May 12. “The hypocritical and bureaucratic system allows for her rights to be undermined without considering the cost this will bring to the girl,” it read.

“Who will take charge now to stop the undermining of her rights and protect her health and her life? How much longer do we need to wait before somebody decides responsibly on the interruption of that pregnancy?” it concluded.

In her interview, Silva also said the girl’s parents “never visited, with exception of one of the six siblings she has.”

 “The best that could happen would be to ensure that she has a ‘welcoming family,’ that would receive the girl with her baby,” continued Silva. “I doubt we can achieve that because it’s hard to find families who want this challenge.”

The girl remains under INAU’s care and her abuser has been imprisoned.

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Steve Weatherbe

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Christian jeweller made gay couples’ rings but still got targeted by gay lobby

Steve Weatherbe
By Steve Weatherbe

MOUNT PEARL, Newfoundland, May 25, 2015 (LifeSiteNews.com) –While North Americans are used to reading about Christian business people being fined and excoriated for refusing to cater to homosexual weddings, Newfoundland has added a novel twist: there a Christian jeweller has been punished financially and deluged with hate mail even though he did do business with a homosexual couple.

Nicole White and Pam Renouf liked the service they got from Esau Jardon of Today’s Jewellers in Mount Pearl, Newfoundland and Labrador, who took their deposit and proceeded to design and build them two engagement rings. They even recommended the store to friends.

But by the time one friend went there, the Mexican-born Jardon had put up a sign in his shop window marking Mother’s Day—and his strong, traditional Christian beliefs: “The Sanctity of Marriage IS UNDER ATTACK; Help Keep Marriage Between Man & Woman,” it read.

The friend went ballistic. Her picture of the sign went viral. The couple went back on their deal and back to the store, demanding their deposit. Today’s Jewellers’ Facebook page was so deluged with hundreds of hateful emails and many threats that Jardon and his brother, who is his business partner, have to shut it down.

LifeSiteNews asked White if Jardon had been punished enough. “Omigod, yes,” she responded. “Way, way too much.” But earlier she explained to a local newspaper why the couple cancelled their order. “The ring symbolizes love, and just knowing that that’s the sign that they have up there — every time I look at my ring, yes, I’ll think of us, clearly, but also everything we went through. So I don’t want my ring from there anymore. I just want my refund.”

At first, she reported, “They just said that that's their beliefs, and they think they can put up whatever they want. I just said it was very disrespectful, it's very unprofessional and I wanted a refund,” White said. “I have no issues with them believing in what they believe in. I think everyone's entitled to their own opinion. But I don't think they should put their personal beliefs inside their business.”

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Jardon, at first, was loath to return it, lest this be seen as an apology for his beliefs. Reached in Toronto, he told the St. John’s Telegram, “When I walk on Church Street in Toronto, where I am right now, and I see [LGBT rainbow flags], and I see a lot of signs and a lot of things on public property, I don't have a problem with them. I accept it. I chose to come to Canada... and we accept the whole package... I don't discriminate against that, nor do I come and tell them to take them down. For the same reason, I ask to have the same respect in return, especially when it's in my own business.”

But what is sauce for the gander is not sauce for the geese, or for the LGBT community that crowded onto the bandwagon, or for the CBC which was all too ready to label the jeweller’s sign “homophobic.”

However, some have offered support and sympathy. Rod Dreher, blogging at The American Conservative, observed that only so-called sexual minorities expected this kind of treatment. “Is a fundamentalist Christian permitted to send her osso buco back to the kitchen if she discovers that homosexual hands cooked it? Of course not. Some delicate snowflakes are more delicate than others.”

Referring to recent decisions by courts and human rights tribunals against Christian vendors who refused to serve homosexuals, Dreher concluded on an ironic note. The pressure on Jardon to return the deposit marked “the next phase in the March of Progress. You must not only bake the cake, or arrange the flowers, or make the ring, you must hold the correct opinion when you do it.”

Jardon defends his right to his own opinion. “One of the reasons my family chose to move to Canada was the rights that it offered, the freedom of religion and freedom of speech, both of which at the time seemed to be very limited in Mexico,” he said.

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Canadians headed to the ballot box for the fall federal election should remember the right to life is 'the most basic thing in society,' the archbishop tells LifeSiteNews. Pete Baklinski / LifeSiteNews
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Exclusive: Clinging to Christ will help those struggling with sexual identity, says Montreal’s archbishop

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By Pete Baklinski

OTTAWA, May 25, 2015 (LifeSiteNews.com) -- Montreal’s archbishop, Christian Lépine, weighed in on what the Catholic Church actually has to offer people struggling with the biological sex they were born with, telling LifeSiteNews in an exclusive interview that it’s no mistake that God creates the human person as male or female and that every person must look for their identity within a “view of God.”

“The teachings of the Church as such, its most basic one, is that we’re made in the image of God. That's always the starting point. And when you lose track of that — that you're made in the image of God — then somehow you come to lose trust in who you are as a human being, and you know less of who you are, and you don't know anymore who you are, and you [find yourself] looking for your own identity outside of a view of God,” Lépine told LifeSiteNews last week one day prior to the annual National March for Life that drew an estimated 25,000 pro-life advocates.

Following the first book of the Bible, where it is stated that God created human beings as “male and female,” the Catholic Church has always taught, and continues to teach, that the male/female binary is God’s plan for mankind.

As the book of Genesis (1:27) states: “God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him, male and female he created them.”

The Catechism of the Catholic Church stresses that recognizing and preserving the male/female sexual difference is necessary for a healthy society.

“Everyone, man and woman, should acknowledge and accept his sexual identity. Physical, moral, and spiritual difference and complementarity are oriented toward the goods of marriage and the flourishing of family life. The harmony of the couple and of society depends in part on the way in which the complementarity, needs, and mutual support between the sexes are lived out,” the Catechism states.

Lépine said that anytime questions about sexual identity arise for the faithful, “we must go back to the basics,” namely that “every human is created in the image of God, and of course, biblically, every human being exists as a woman or as a man.”

The archbishop’s words are foreign to mainstream notions of so-called ‘gender fluidity’ where male/female difference is construed as a social construct and ultimately as a personal choice.

Lépine acknowledged that some people suffer when it comes to accepting their own sexual identity as either a male or female based on biological characteristics.

“Sometimes people have sufferings about their own desires, or about their own sense of identity, or about the fact that masculinity and femininity exists, or about the fact that you as ‘human being’ [exist] as a male or female, as a man or as a woman.”

He called the male/female binary “a reality that is part of the [human] experience,” adding that it is also “taught in the Bible.”

Lépine stressed that the Church does not leave people “looking for a meaning in their lives and their own sense of identity” to struggle on their own, but offers them many helps and aids, including a clear anthropology on the nature of the human person.

“As Christians, we have the Bible to help people. We have Jesus Christ to help people. We have faith in God to help people. So, going back, [we must be] conscious that we are made in the image of God. And our own sexuality — what is the meaning of being a man or woman — is related to our vocation to love. And, every human being as such, made in the image of God — being a man or woman — is called to love.”

“So, how [are we] to help [such] people? You can talk about things theoretically, which is one thing. But also, we have to be conscious of people who live through situations where they're looking for their own identity and we need, I think, the Bible and faith to help them.”

Fluid notions of gender have been criticized by Pope Francis on at least three occasions, and prior to this, by Pope Benedict XVI.

“Gender theory is an error of the human mind that leads to so much confusion," Pope Francis told young people during his voyage to Naples, Italy last March.

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In his 2012 Christmas greeting, Pope Benedict condemned gender theory as a “profound falsehood” since it denies the male and female sex as a “given element of nature.” According to Benedict, instead of acknowledging that God created people male and female, gender theory posits the existence of sexual social constructions that people can decide to conform to or not.

“The profound falsehood of this theory and of the anthropological revolution contained within it is obvious. People dispute the idea that they have a nature, given by their bodily identity, that serves as a defining element of the human being. They deny their nature and decide that it is not something previously given to them, but that they make it for themselves.”

“When the freedom to be creative becomes the freedom to create oneself, then necessarily the Maker himself is denied and ultimately man too is stripped of his dignity as a creature of God, as the image of God at the core of his being,” Benedict concluded. “The defence of the family is about man himself. And it becomes clear that when God is denied, human dignity also disappears,” he said.

Earlier in the interview, Lépine spoke about the need to “promote relentlessly life and respect for life” in the face of the country’s top court setting the legal stage for allowing doctors to end the lives of their patients under the pretext of compassion and mercy.

“You don't take care of someone when you suppress the life of someone, because you're not solving a problem. You're suppressing the person. It doesn't work,” he said.

Referring to the upcoming federal election this fall, the archbishop called “life and the right-to-life and dignity of the person” an “important subject, because it's the most basic thing in society.” 

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