Abortion in Canada: Barbara Kay on the absurdity of it all

I reside in liberal Toronto, where the trite phrase “a woman’s right to choose” is trotted out as the answer to every single question about abortion. Does a fetus, or an embryo, constitute human life? Is it OK to abort such a life before a certain gestation date? Why is the last day of the first trimester any different than the first day of the second trimester? Would it have been OK if your mother had aborted you, or your brother or sister, in the first trimester – would that have been a fine choice for your mother to have made? And what about the thousands of infertile couples waiting for years, and paying tens of thousands of dollars, waiting for a healthy newborn to adopt? Somehow, “it’s a woman’s choice” doesn’t quite cut it.

As it happens, I respect a woman’s right to choose whether to have sex with a man – but once a unique individual begins to grow inside of her as a result of that choice, the choices . At that point, it’s time to grow up and choose between the two remaining options: marry the father and raise a family, or carry the child to birth and grant the gift of life to a loving adoptive family.

But I digress: this post is to promote today’s column by of one of our rare clear-thinking Canadian writers, Barbara Kay, “Sacrificing conscience to the sanctity of Abortion”. The column touches on many questions about the absurd state of abortion in Canada, focusing on two recent events: the proposed fatwa against doctors-of-conscience to refuse to promote abortion by the College of Physicians and Surgeons Ontario; and the public criticism of V-P candidate Governor Sarah Palin for carrying her Down’s Syndrome child to term by the executive vice-president of the Society of Obstetricians and Gynecologists of Canada, Dr. André Lalonde.

To my liberal Jewish friends and family, I encourage you to open your minds to this liberal Jewish woman’s take on the cult of abortion. If it’s about “a woman’s right to choose”, then what about a doctor’s right to choose? And if it’s about compassion for women, then what about compassion for those who live life with the extra chromosome, who are now told that they should never have been born? If your answer is “it’s a woman’s right to choose”, then perhaps you may be unwilling to face the complexity of the issue.

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5 Comments

Filed under Abortion Unlimited, Against the Grain

5 responses to “Abortion in Canada: Barbara Kay on the absurdity of it all

  1. blondie

    you’re an idiot.

  2. jake

    hi,
    nice article. I read it over, and you present a fine argument, but quite frankly, had my mother aborted me, I would not be here to know about it, and therefore, it would not be a matter of importance, thus nullifiying THAT argument.

    Also, about your ending comment: “what about compassion for those who live life with the extra chromosome, who are now told that they should never have been born?” Honestly, I love working with children, “extra chromosome” or not, but just because a fetus is diagnosed with Downs Syndrome prior to birth, doesn’t mean it won’t be had. There will always be people who WILL carry those children to term, and just because we want women to have the right to choose does not mean we want them to abort all children with disabilities. Its about their right to choose, if the fetus is diagnosed with Downs Syndrome, they should have every right to choose to abort it, or keep it.

    “I respect a woman’s right to choose whether to have sex with a man – but once a unique individual begins to grow inside of her as a result of that choice, the choices .” This is a good enough point, however I still disagree. But despite that, you are leaving out an important minority: rape victims. Can you honestly say that if you were impregnated as a result of rape, that you waould want to carry this scum’s child? Should not rape victims at least have the choice? I know it is rare, but it happens. I mean i know Christians believe in the “sanctity of life” but sometimes real life is more important than religion.

  3. jake

    I must agree with you on one thing however, it was not right of Dr. LaLonde to speak out against Sarah Palin for NOT aborting the child, its the right of the woman to choose, not the doctor.

  4. theoldhogger

    Blondie….after assembling all the cogent arguments you could think of, “You’re an idiot” was your response? Why bother? Why not try to learn tolerance for the opinions of others? Perhaps it was a ‘blonde moment’ for you, but in future, try to follow the sage advice, “Brain first, mouth second”.

  5. K MacGregor

    “Would it have been OK if your mother had aborted you, or your brother or sister, in the first trimester – would that have been a fine choice for your mother to have made?”

    Sure! I’d never know any different. No one would. Just as the offspring of Celine Dion and Stephen Harper tragically was never given the chance to exist, and yet somehow we don’t miss it, neither would we miss me or my nonexistent sibling.

    “And what about the thousands of infertile couples waiting for years, and paying tens of thousands of dollars, waiting for a healthy newborn to adopt?” Er.. what about the kids who need adopting? I’m confused here.

    “As it happens, I respect a woman’s right to choose whether to have sex with a man”
    This idea, that they should never have had sex in the first place and it’s their own stupid fault if they’re pregnant, ignores a great deal of situational variability. Rape, of course, is the first to come to mind. Then there are the more subtle ones – women who are afraid to speak up when drunken boyfriend doesn’t want to wear a condom, women who are afraid to ask, women who have sex at a young age before anyone has taught them about birth control, women who come from broken families or other situations where unprotected sex isn’t a major taboo, and, of course, women who use birth control but get pregnant anyway through the flukes of statistics, as some do. Sexism in our society, particularly with regard to the use of women as sex objects to please men, is rampant. Until that’s cured and every woman has strong confidence and self-esteem and no woman ever has to worry about being abused, mistreated, manipulated, etc., we can’t deny them the ability to fix the mistakes they’ve made.

    “At that point, it’s time to grow up and choose between the two remaining options: marry the father and raise a family, or carry the child to birth and grant the gift of life to a loving adoptive family.”
    Grow up? Should a thirteen-year-old girl have to grow up? Throw away her future, drop out of school and become another welfare statistic? Your average woman who needs an abortion doesn’t come from a safe, loving family who will help her raise her child. The father isn’t usually a sweet, good-hearted man who just made a mistake one day. Chances are Mom comes from a single-mother family with a mother who works a minimum wage job and spends most of her money on cigarettes and alcohol, and Dad is just some boy who wanted to get laid. They don’t have anything to fall back on. What are the long-term consequences of this thirteen-year-old being forced to give birth to her baby and either attempt to raise it or give it away?
    Also, why must she marry the father to raise a family? There’s a good possibility that the father is someone who happily had unprotected sex without caring about the consequences, because it was just some dumb chick and he wouldn’t ever have to see her again. Not someone she’d want to marry, maybe. But maybe she doesn’t know any better having never witnessed a loving relationship in others. Regardless, it’s much more likely that she’d either raise the child on her own or raise the child with the help of whomever she’s dating, father or not, than that she’d want to marry the father. Since we don’t exile or condemn bastard children these days, I don’t see how that’s a major problem.

    What about sympathy for the child who grows up in a family that would rather have had an abortion? It’s an unwanted child, probably growing up in a broken family, and probably ending up as another thirteen-year-old having children as a result of its upbringing. Do we so desperately need more children that we must promote this, when it’s a perfectly good option for the couple to simply not have a child? That’s what we would have advocated for before the pregnancy, isn’t it?

    I think that perhaps your view is missing some of the complexity of the issue. The roots that make abortion necessary are much deeper in our society than happy-go-lucky healthy young men and women frivolously changing their minds about whether they want children.

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