On Thursday, May 2, two dozen people wearing black robes, plus a dozen other pro-life demonstrators, protested the Toronto visit of Dr. Etienne Baulieu, the inventor of RU-486.


Dr. Baulieu claimed that the recently-reported death due to the RU0486 was an accident due to unforeseen external circumstances (see “Abortion pill kills woman,” The Interim, May 1991)


His visit to Toronto was sponsored by CARAL (Canadian Abortion Rights Action League). RU-486 kills newly conceived babies by expelling the fetus from the womb.


The protest was organized by Campaign Life Coalition (CLC) as part of its crusade to alert people to what is at issue here. A little street theatre helped draw attention to the event.


Grim Reaper


The two dozen pro-life demonstrators, wearing black ropes and with hoods draped around skull masks, provoked widespread media attention often denied previous pro-life demonstrators.


Impossible to ignore was the nine-foot ‘Grim Reaper’ who preceded a casket somberly carried by a four pallbearers. A tape of Mozart’s Requiem concealed in the casket provided musical accompaniment.


While passer-by accepted CLC literature, asked questions, argued or commented on the theatrical nature of the demonstration, Cherie McDonald of the Ontario Coalition of Abortion Clinics feverishly attempted to drown out the performance by leading a hand-clapping, shrill-voiced choir who chanted worn-out slogans.


An estimated 200 people heard Dr. Baulieu defend his ‘anti-human pesticide’ (Dr. Wilhelm Scheppens), almost certainly a disappointing turnout in view of the advance publicity, including a brief write-up in the Toronto Globe and Mail the previous morning.


The two national pro-life groups, Campaign Life Coalition (political) and Alliance for Life (educational), are promoting a nationwide boycott of Hoechst (chemical-agriculture products) and Roussel Uclaf, the pharmaceutical company behind the development and marketing of RU-486.


“The only proven use of RU-486 is the destruction of babies in the womb. Its proven and potential harm to women makes it distribution irresponsible,” the Alliance press release observed.