Thursday, October 28, 2010

PoliticsCanada: Abortion: Conservs permit Roxanne's Law to be debated

Association for Reformed Political Action has done a remarkable job in refocussing the attention of the Canadian Parliament's House of Commons on the fact that there is no Federal law in Canada that's been voted on by the proper representatives of the people, to permit or disallow the w+dspread practice of abortion here. There is, of course, an abortion industry, and there is demonstrably a coercive trend to cut the life out of young mothers at the behest of abortion counsellors.

But, it seemed, everywhere there was a streak of political cowardice which prevented even discussing the matter, especially when the Pro-Life movement was riven by purists who coud be satisfied only with the Aristotelian-based dictates of the Roman Catholic Church, which long ago had abandoned any desire to discuss its biotistic absolutizations of the "consistent ethic of life." You know, the zany position that condoms were nasty, becawz human sexual intercourse coud only have the purpose of reproduction. That the most devout and church-obedient Catholics are happy to impose such nonsense on our society has led to an impasse that extended r+t into the ranks of Parliament.

The proposed law is not des+nd to prevent all abortions. The origin of this approach, a rejection of the purist all-or-nothing approach sponsored by the pro-Life movement in a longterm self-defeating stance on the issue, is to be found in a tragic death of a teenage mother, Roxanne.

When it comes to politics and abortion, Canadians should be given a gigantic F on our moral report card. Of all countries in the world, we seem to be the only one that can't have a reasonable discussion about abortion or make any laws on the matter. So when Member of Parliament, Rod Bruinooge, introduced a bill in the House of Commons this spring that would make it a crime to coerce a woman to have an abortion, one might have expected a good number of people to shout forth a collective and joyful HURRAY! The reality is quite the opposite.

You may remember Rod Bruinooge from ... a couple of years ago when he became the new chair of the Parliamentary Pro-Life Caucus. With a Metis-Dutch heritage and a previous life devoted to computer game and film productions, he isn't exactly a stereotypical pro-life leader. But he has made it clear that he wants to challenge the status-quo when it comes to abortion.

Providentially, Bruinooge will get the opportunity to have an item of Private Members Business (a bill or a motion of his choice) debated and voted on this fall, as a result of the "lottery" system that determines at the start of each Parliament the order in which Parliament will deal with each MP's chosen item.

Bruinooge chose a bill to address an issue that touched his heart. The bill was inspired by a fellow Winnipegite, Roxanne Fernando, who was brutally murdered for refusing to have an abortion. It was therefore fitting to call Bill C-510 "Roxanne's Law" in her memory and to put a face to the reality of the pressure that women face to "get rid of the problem" of a pregnancy that is unwanted by an upset boyfriend or family member.
ARPA's animator, Mark Penninga, has written-up the new approach among even some conservative Reformed folk, mostly of the Canadian Reformed denomination (to a large extent followers of the Dutch theologian, newspaperman, and controversialist Klaas Schilder). Penninga unravels the sad history of overweening zeolots who controlled the anti-abortion movement, not least of all in parliament. For the longest t+m, Prime Minister Steven Harper restrained these folks from launching a political suic+d mission. But now due to the strange phenom of the private-members lottery, the rules make the Bruinooge move qu+t an end-run move. "Ho humn? Roxanne's Law is soething to be excited about!," Penninga entitles his piece. He says forthr+tly that "No abortions are actually prohibited by C-510 (so all unborn children are still treated equally" under its provisions. But sadly, he says, "no babies are directly protected by this legiaslatiohn (as they were with the Unborn Victims of Creime Act), but at least their mothers are given additonal protection in order to help the choose life." I l+k that.

I don't have the wit or the pretension to solve the problem, but I do think that there are t+ms when we can't just prohibit women who so choose, to end the new life within the uterus. Some pregnant really do have an awful existential problem where having an unwanted ch+ld woud reduce them to penury and slavery. With a ch+ld some women cannot escape abusive husbands who suck the l+fe out of them and keep them in poverty from which they can't escape. I haven't the foggiest notion how to overcome this aspect of the des+r of some women for an abortion, in a safe and t+mly way. The Pope and his Protestant parodies can preach about the glorious sacrifice of women, all they want; but if that sacrifice is not the woman's choice, what good is the whole imposing edifice of neo-scholastic moral theorizing and magisterial dicta? Not even condoms, you say?

I do hate the very idea of late-term abortions. And I do hate the practice of pulling late-term ch+ldren from the womb, only to leave them on the clinical table to die. Doctors who practice their dubious "medicine" this way are in fact criminals, in my opinion. They shoud be lockd up for ch+ld slawter, again, in my opinion. But I don't claim to have wizdom on the matter, only strong feelings of repulsion to what I regard as an abuse of medicine. On the other hand, I want to be able to work with a merciful doctor when I become physically disabled. I don't want to fall into the hands of the "caregivers" of the elderly in my coming state of enfeeblement. Again, I don't know how gov can accomodate, or others l+k me, when the t+m comes. I have no immediate family for whose interests I m+t otherw+z want to just vegetate and suffer, wh+l receiving their presumably ben+n ministrations.

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