Voluntary Death

January 6 – Montreal – Mr. Justice Jacques Dufour rules in favour of terminally ill, 25 year old Nancy B’s request to have her life support system disconnected. Nancy suffers from Guillan – Barré Syndrome, a crippling sickness for which there is no cure. She appealed to the courts after doctors were hesitant to act on her behalf.

The ruling permitted Nancy’s doctor, Daniele Marceau, to withdraw life support after the expiration of a 30–day appeal period. The decision created controversy as to whether the judge was permitting voluntary suicide or whether Nancy’s condition was indeed beyond ordinary treatment.

Party Politics

February 17 – 23 – Hull – The Liberal for Life, a group trying to create a pro-life voice within the Federal Liberal Part, receive extensive publicity in trying to elect some of their members to party positions.

Many delegates at the convention speak out against the pro-life group, denouncing them as “instant liberals” and “fake grits” and “one issue people”. Among those speaking against the pro-lifers are leader Jean Chrétien and MP John Nunziata, a one time pro-lifer.

The “Libs for Life” resolutions were shot down and the convention passed special new rules to guard against the possibility of future pro-life nominations. From now on, all candidates must first be approved by the party leader before they are able to run for nomination.

Euthanasia

February 18 – Ottawa – A House of Commons Committee kills the euthanasia bill sponsored by Robert Wenman, Conservative MP from Fraser Valley, BC. Wenman’s Bill C-203 was designed according to advice from pro-euthanasia groups such as Dying with Dignity. Because of the proposed legislation’s wording and possible misinterpretations, it is described by the proposed legislation’s vague wording and possible misinterpretations, it is described by the committee as dangerous and unsuitable.

Wenman blames the death of his bill on the “God Squad,” that is anyone in Parliament who opposed it. The defeat is timely because many observers feel that C-203, if passed, would have become an important wedge for euthanasia supporters.

Ireland and abortion

February 26 – Dublin – Ireland’s Supreme Court overturns a lower Court decision and an Attorney General’s injunction and rules in favour of a 14 year old girl who wishes to terminate her pregnancy. The ruling allows the girl, who claims she was raped, to travel to England for her abortion. Observers say that the case was set up by those who would like to challenged and rescind Ireland’s abortion laws. They see tough days for the pro-life movement who are still scrambling to get organized.

Ontario’s judiciary

March 5 – Toronto – Ontario Premier Bob Rae appoints Judy Rebick to Ontario Judicial Council. Rebick, one of Canada’s most radical feminists and strident pro-abortionists, now advises on the appointment of provincial judges. Rebick is the President of the National Action Committee on the Status of Women (NAC) and a member of the Canadian Abortion Rights Action League (CARAL). For years, she has served as a spokeswoman for Henry Morgentaler. Rebick’s appointment illustrates Premier Bob Rae’s commitment to appointing radical feminists to major positions, following in the footsteps of former Liberal Premier David Peterson who earlier appointed pro-abortion feminists June Callwood and Doris Anderson to the Judicial Council.

New Brunswick hospitals

March 25 – St. John, NB – New Brunswick Health Minister Russel King introduces legislation which effectively allows Premier Frank McKenna’s provincial liberals to seize control of the province’s hospitals, including those controlled by independent religious groups such as seven Catholic hospitals.

The legislation replaces the local boards of hospitals with regional boards, which will act under the direction of the province. Many in the Catholic health care system fear that the takeover may force them to participate in abortions and related services. New Brunswick Archbishop Donat Chiasson called the move “dictatorial”, but this did not dissuade the government.

Abortuary blown up

May 18 – Toronto – A firebomb destroys Henry Morgentaler’s Harbord St. abortuary in Toronto. Pro-abortionists and the press immediately place the blame on “radical” pro-lifers and try to smear the entire movement. The police investigation does not produce any leads but the press takes it for granted that a pro-lifer is guilty. The NDP government promises over $400,000 to upgrade abortuary security and hints that they will underwrite and costs Morgentaler incurs in setting up a new location.

Sunday Shopping

June 3 – Toronto – Ontario Premier Bob Rae announces that the province will allow wide-open Sunday shopping. Until now, the NDP has been the only party which opposed Sunday openings. In giving in to the large retailers, Rae’s government threw away its one and only pro-family policy.

U.S. Supreme Court

June 29 – Washington – In ruling on Planned Parenthood vs. Casey, the U.S. Supreme Court voted to uphold a mildly restrictive abortion law sponsored by Pennsylvania Governor Robert Casey. However, in doing so, the Court upholds the principle of Roe vs. Wade the notorious 1973 ruling which allows abortion on demand.

Many pro-lifers feel betrayed by three Justices, O’Conner, Kennedy, and Souter, who, until now, had been considered to be “on side.” Pro-life experts consider the ruling to be a spineless attempt by these Justices to maintain judicial integrity by not disowning a previous ruling of their own Court.

RU-486

July 15 – New York –  A young woman arriving in Britain has her RU-486 abortion pills seized by immigration officers. The seizure is a set-up by American pro-abortionists who hope to create a sensational court case which challenges the prohibition of RU-486.

In Canada, later in the week, Ontario’s Health Minister Frances Lankin calls on Federal Health Minister Benoit Bouchard to introduce the abortion pill to Canada. The Canadian print media immediately chimes in.

Legitimate discrimination

July 23 – The Vatican – The Congregation for the Defence of the Faith (CDF) issues a statement commenting on the current drive for legislation – especially in the U.S. and Canada – to prohibit discrimination of any kind against homosexuals.

The letter reminds Catholics that not all discrimination is wrong and that certain harmful effects may follow from the failure to discriminate. Among others, it mentions “the bad effects on society and the status of the family of the false argument that homosexual acts are legitimate and acceptable.”

Gay “Spouses”

September 7 – Toronto – A three member of the Ontario Human Rights Commission orders the Ontario Government to grant homosexual and lesbian partners of the status “spouse.”

The government must now pay long-term homosexual partners survivor pensions, health and dental coverage, bereavement leave and other family benefits.

Life Chain

October 4 – North America

Over one million pro-life Canadians and Americans line city sidewalks holding signs reading “Abortion Kills Children.” In Canada the “chain” runs from coast to coast with almost 80,000 Canadians participating . Vancouver leads the way with a total of 13,000. There is good media coverage in many places except in large such as Toronto and Montreal. Canada’s national newspaper, the Globe and Mail, ignores the event.

A pro-abortion President

November 3 – Washington – Americans go to the polls and choose Democrat Bill Clinton over incumbent George Bush. This choice scares and saddens American pro-lifers. Several of Clinton’s election promises were to repeal the Hyde Amendment (removing the gag from Planned Parenthood); working for the passage of F.O.C.A. (The Freedom of Choice Act which bans state legislation against abortion), appointing only pro-abortion judges and extending special rights to homosexuals. (See editorial and story for more election coverage.)