WINNIPEG, October 18, 2004 ( – Conservative Justice Critic Vic Toews and Conservative MP Rob Merrifield addressed the National Pro-Life Conference Thursday and Friday respectively.  Toews focused his comments on the abuse of the Charter by the Supreme Court while Merrifield concentrated his remarks on the recently passed Canadian human reproductive legislation.

Toews quoted from conservative American legal scholar Robert Bork, noting that in his book “Coercing Virtue” Bork reports how US courts are imposing a set of values upon American people.  Toews also quoted Abraham Lincoln, speaking 150 years ago in his first inaugural address, “the candid citizen must confess that if the policy of the government upon vital questions affecting the whole people is to be fixed by decisions of the supreme court the people will have ceased to be their own rulers, having to that extent resigned their government into the hands of the court.”

Toews commented, “it is no different in Canada.”  Merrifield spoke of his experience on the Health Committee as the human reproductive legislation was before the committee.  He revealed that while the bill is admittedly bad in that it permits the creation of human embryos for deadly experimentation, it is not being held up even in its positive aspects.  The legislation requires that all embryonic stem cell research be conducted only with a license from the regulating agency that is to be created.

While the agency is still a year away from being created, the publicly funded research on human embryos is already underway since the aspects of the legislation dealing with those restrictive provisions have not yet been enacted.  “The brave new world of embryonic research is here in Canada,” he said.  Merrifield said that with the allowance of the creation of human life for experimentation Canada has made an “important and disserving ethical shift in this nation.”  He said, “This nation was founded on the principles of respect of human life.  And if we change that ethic to the place where we are prepared to destroy life solely for the purpose of betterment of others, then we have never gone their as a nation before. That really doesn’t come down to an ethical standard but to a mathematical equation. If we reduce our ethic in this nation to math I fear where we will go as a nation.”  jhw