This fourth editorial on the anti-life, pro-death philosophy which dominates Canada concerns the law.
At the start of the series, in July, we argued that the drive for full protection of the unborn cannot be obtained on a piecemeal basis.
In September, we said that it can’t be done either by adopting the language and standards of secularists and feminists who reject the Christian concept of the sacredness of innocent life. The latter has been a foundational principle of our society since the days of the Christian conversion of the Roman Empires. This also means that there is no place for Christian “wimps” i.e., people who apologize for the hard but necessary teaching of Christ – in which they say they believe – only to deny them in practice usually in order to ingratiate themselves with the ruling Powers and Dominations.
The question of law remains crucial. Pope John Paul II recently asked all Catholic bishops throughout the world – over 4,000 of them – to make the abortion issue a priority. “In the context of the numerous and violent attacks against human life today,” he wrote in his June 21, 1991, letter to the bishops, “especially when it is the weakest and most defenceless, statistical data point to a veritable ‘slaughter of innocents’ on a worldwide scale.” Of particular concern, he went on to say is the frightening confusion among people how to distinguish between good and evil.
It was this last point he hammered home:
“However serious and disturbing the phenomenon of the widespread destruction of so many human lives, either in the womb or in old age, no less serious and disturbing is the blunting of the moral sensitivity of people’s consciences. Laws and civil ordinances not only reflect this confusion but they also contribute to it. When legislative bodies allow their resources and structures to be used for these crimes, individual consciences, often poorly formed, are all the more easily led into error. In order to break this vicious circle, it seems more urgent than ever that we should forcefully reaffirm our common teaching, based on Sacred Scripture and Tradition, with regard to the inviolability of innocent human life.” L’Ossevator Romano, English edition, July 24, 1991.
For some years The Interim carried Martin Luther King’s saying on its masthead: “Changing the law will not change the heart, but it will restrain the heartless.”
It was King’s response to those who airily dismiss legal-political action because, they argue, a change of heart must come first. It provides these rear seat drivers with a plausible justification for their inaction. The Interim eventually dropped the motto because of the conviction that changing the law will not merely restrain the heartless but often will change the heart.
The Canadian legal system is now corrupt. The origin of this lies beyond our times, coming from the adoption of “positive” law which recognizes no absolute standards. Of late this corruption has been greatly and gratuitously accelerated by radically false – and therefore morally unacceptable – decisions and ruling by the magistrates, led by the Supreme Court of Canada.
All these rulings, in turn, depend on the fatal decision of the Canadian parliament in May 1969 to “legalize” the killing of the unborn, which has had a devastating effect on the thinking of Canadians. But this political act must be undone and can be undone. As we mentioned in August, there is still a large consensus among Canadians about what are essentially traditional Christian values. What we need is enough people to set their minds to it.