Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Saving Some Is Not A Compromise

When saving some is all we can do we should never pretend it's all we hope to do. But at the same time, we should not refuse to save some, when there is a chance to do so:
Why is it that this year alone over 80 laws have been passed in the United States restricting abortion and yet in Canada we have not been able to pass one law in over 20 years?
Given that politics is the art of what is possible, it means that politicians have to work with the sad reality that our society will not ban abortion today. At least two thirds of Canadians would oppose a ban on abortion, and some polls have the figure much higher than that. The political will to address the issue is even weaker than the public will. However, polls do show that at least 60% of Canadians would support some legal protection for the unborn (increasing protection with longer gestation). Given this reality, and given also the fact that every other country in the Western world has been able to pass abortion laws and restrictions, there is room for our Parliament to get rid of the gap between what Canadians would support and the status quo (no legal protection for unborn children).

When pro-life politicians in this country have tried to do what is possible by advancing legislation, they are given very little support by the key organizations representing the political arm of the pro-life movement. These politicians are often singled out as “compromisers.” With immense opposition from pro-abortion activists, the media, and even their own party, is it any wonder that after 20 years of this, most MPs, even pro-life MPs, are hesitant to touch the issue?
Not sure if the opposition to incremental legislation is as strong as Mark Penninga describes. I don't recall any known pro-lifers opposing the Unborn Victims of Crime Act or the bill against coerced abortions. Although, as I understand, this kind of "all or nothing" approach did play its role in derailing the last government bill on abortion, back in early 1990s. What is certain however is that Canada's pro-life movement sure needs to work on its strategy. The gap between Canada and the US is just appalling.

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