February 8, 2012 (Unmaskingchoice.ca) Yesterday, two Canadian news stories were released that revealed the continuance of an alarming trend. The first detailed how my colleague Francisco Gomez was arrested by the Calgary Police after they decided that the abortion imagery he and his fellow pro-lifers were displaying was “too obscene.” This is regardless of the fact that abortion is the most common medical procedure in Canada and has been disingenuously labelled “therapeutic.”


The second story was of much the same nature: the University of Victoria Student Society (UVSS) once again decided to deny pro-lifers at their university any free speech rights for displaying the same images, even demanding that they apologize to those they had offended.

The Canadian media, to their credit, immediately recognized that unpopular views, especially those revolving around matters of public debate, should be protected and denounced the actions of the Calgary Police and the UVSS.

Just kidding.

I didn’t think that I possessed the capacity to get depressed by media and public reactions to censorship anymore, but yesterday changed things. Censorship has been disgustingly common against pro-lifers as of late, and has only increased recently: a motion was put forward to ban Carleton pro-lifers from their own campus; a pro-life activist called the police after being assaulted, and was rewarded with a fine for exercising his free speech rights; Simon Fraser University demanded that a pro-life display be shielded from the public so that people would not be “inadvertently” exposed to a point of view they did not like.


I fully realize that censorship is becoming so common, that it is considered almost monotonous by Canadians. Really? Those pesky pro-lifers with their graphic images and foolish point of view are being forced to go away again? Oh well. They had it coming. Please hand me my beer and the television remote, I think a really important sports game is on. If that goes badly, I may get so worked up I’ll loot a store.

Really? Can you really muster no outrage when fellow Canadians are told that their point of view is not worthy of public expression? You can listen apathetically when all sorts of insidious excuses are given for the censorship, in complete contravention of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms? You honestly believe that your personal feelings on a matter are more important than the rights of someone else to express their view?

The worst part of the situation is that so many pro-lifers are terrified of public confrontation that they have begun to echo some of the same rhetoric: Perhaps we should use different tactics. Maybe we had it coming. If we just stopped getting people riled up, they would start liking us and abortion would end.

Nonsense. All of it. Why don’t we just get a list of pro-life tactics they approve of from the Abortion Rights Coalition of Canada and work inside those parameters? Why don’t we just call a truce with those who advocate for the slaughtering of little children and make sure we get along? After all, our ideological differences can be overcome with a good fondue dinner and an enforced group hug. Oh, and don’t inadvertently look at the pile of pre-born corpses in the corner of their office on your way out. It’s a bit obscene.

George Orwell once wrote that “If large numbers of people are interested in freedom of speech, there will be freedom of speech, even if the law forbids it; if public opinion is sluggish, inconvenient minorities will be persecuted, even if the laws exist to protect them.”

Well, here we are. Soft fascism may go down better than a jackboot, and taste a bit like Kool-Aid, but it’s still deadly. And when mixed with what Martin Luther King Jr. referred to as the “tranquilizing drug of gradualism,” we’ve pretty much gone for a nap on the moral high ground and informed the opposition that we’re not really that interested in sacrifice and activism.

After all, American Idol will be on soon. I don’t want to miss that.

Reprinted with permission from Unmaskingchoice.ca