Schouten's campaign is an important part of efforts to end abortion
By Natalie Sonnen
Special to The B.C. Catholic
All eyes have been on Texas lately, as that state joined 17 other U.S. states in passing laws restricting abortions.
The banning of abortion post 20 weeks gestation in Texas drew the most disturbing displays of vitriolic, angry, vile, and even bizarre behaviour by pro-abortion activists who demonstrated, in no uncertain terms, that the culture of death wants blood and will stop at nothing to get it.
On the other hand, scores of pro-life supporters, the famous like Abbey Johnston and Father Frank Pavone as well as the not-so-famous, gathered at the state capitol to sing songs and show their support for the legislation.
The banning of abortions past 20 weeks was finally signed into law July 18. It was seen by the pro-life movement in both Canada and the U.S. as a victory for life.
Now North Dakota is attempting to ban abortions past six weeks.
It is surprising to me, then, that the We Need a Law Campaign is receiving such strong criticism from my fellow Catholics. Knowing the tremendous talent and dedication with which We Need a Law director Mike Schouten approaches his work, many of us in the pro-life movement have welcomed his efforts to bolster our cause.
Mr. Schouten is quite correct in his assertion that abortions are legal in Canada up to 40 weeks; there are no legal limits on abortion in Canada whatsoever. Indeed, MP Stephen Woodworth received his share of pro-abortion fury just last year for his Motion 312, which attempted to query the criminal code definition of human life.
I would venture to guess that if parliamentarians in Canada ever successfully banned abortion past a certain gestational age, we would also witness the full force of pro-abortion ire.
Limiting abortion via gestational age has been a controversial strategy even for pro-lifers, but nowhere is there a doctrinal prohibition against it. In fact, our own Archbishop J. Michael Miller, CSB, clarified the issue in a recent statement, saying, "A law aimed at limiting the number of legally authorized abortions does not entail the approval of those abortions that it fails to criminalize."
As for Schouten's comment about the age of pro-lifers today, I believe that it is a common notion noted even among our adversaries. Recently Toronto Star reporter Wendy Gillis noted this in an article called, "Canada's pro-life movement gets a slick, youthful rebranding."
Gillis noted that the ranks of the pro-life movement are swelling with young teens and college-age people, who greatly outnumber older adults at the March for Life in Ottawa, and, I dare say, our very successful march in B.C.
We Need a Law is an important part of the national effort to end abortion in this country. Having worked in the pro-life movement for more than 10 years, I can attest to the wonderful collaboration of pro-life groups across this nation, and We Need a Law is most certainly welcomed among us as an important part of our efforts.
Natalie Sonnen is the executive director of LifeCanada/VieCanada.