Last month, Prime Minster Justin Trudeau announced that $650 million of Canada’s foreign aid budget would be directed to support “sexual and reproductive health programs.” The specific amount of Trudeau’s pledge will go some way to fill the gap created by President Trump’s recent reinstitution of the Mexico City Policy, which prohibits U.S. aid from funding abortion overseas. Of course, this unsubtle slight of America’s laudable policy change will not go unnoticed by the new administration. Yet the real cost of Trudeau’s vain stunt will be the irreparable damage to the poor nations that will be victimized by Canada’s so-called charity.
The first thing to criticize about Trudeau’s announcement is that he did not promise new monies. Instead, the funds in question will come from Canada’s existing foreign aid budget. As Toronto Archbishop Thomas Collins pointed out in his letter to the Prime Minister, “money spent on promoting abortion and contraception could be spent on vaccinating millions of women and girls against malaria or other diseases.” But, instead of saving lives, Canada will actively promote their end, and Archbishop Collins rightly cites this decision as an example of the “ideological colonization” that Pope Francis has powerfully decried.
The parallel with 19th-century imperialism is entirely appropriate. For, in addition to exporting the West’s pathological practice of infanticide, Canada’s newly promised aid will also be used to lobby governments in the developing world that restrict abortion. Trudeau has, so to speak, furnished the detestable Court Challenges Program with a foreign office. Under the dubious guise of assistance, Canada will – in some cases – now meddle in the democratically determined policies of free countries simply because they are poor. Our so-called aid will, therefore, change the way needy nations rule themselves. Our celebration of diversity, it would seem, stops at our own borders, and our much-vaunted tolerance does not extend to the self-government of other states. Trudeau has, in effect, turned Canada into an agitator which exports ideology instead of aid.
Echoes of colonialism are, thus, not even the most uncomfortable historical parallel which may be drawn. In spending a princely sum to promote its own perverse ideas overseas, Canada’s new policy resembles Saudi Arabia’s aggressive propagation of Wahhabi Islam. The House of Saud has spent billions to build schools, colleges, and mosques across the globe – and it would seem that Trudeau has taken a page from their evangelical book. But whereas the Saudis simply advance an ideology which limits the rights of women to dress, drive, learn, vote, marry, testify in court, and own property, Canada’s proselytization deprives women of the very right on which all of these other precarious freedoms depend: the right to life.
The most accurate historical parallel for Canada’s new course of action is, therefore, also the most troubling. During the Cold War, many free nations were destabilized by the proxy conflict of the world’s superpowers, and Trudeau’s new policy will undermine poor countries in the same way. Democratic processes will be influenced by externally funded lobbying which, if successful, will bring the same effects that they have had elsewhere – lower birthrates and smaller populations. Canada, in other words, will not only subvert the sovereignty of the nations it claims to aid, but its interference will ultimately harm the prosperity, security, and the independence of these countries. These inevitable, clear, and calamitous consequences beg the obvious question: if we wanted to undermine the nations that we claim to assist and enthrall them to powers in the region, would we act any differently? Should the $650 million that Trudeau has promised perhaps be taken from the defense budget instead?
The United Nations has recently warned that the worst famine in a half-century is threatening Africa and the Middle East and, so far, Canada has pledged a paltry $120 million to the cause, or one fifth for its aggressive promotion of abortion and contraception. But we can no longer conclude that this negligence is simply a terrible misallocation of funds. Chillingly enough, we must note that the famine which now afflicts this region and Canada’s “reproductive imperialism” actually serve the same eugenic end: both will diminish the population of poor countries by different means – starvation on the one hand and prenatal infanticide on the other.
The Culture of Death is the Wahhabism of the West, and its radical clerics are the still-venerated luminaries of the 20th-century Progressive Era whose eugenic ideology is now being put into practice. The “human weeds” that Margaret Sanger dreamed of eradicating are now being menaced by Justin Trudeau’s racist policy of colonial crop-dusting. We must, as Archbishop Collins put it, “do better than imposing a distorted vision of the empowerment of women on … countries that deserve our support.” And we must also identify and rebuke the genocidal policies that Canada wishes to deploy through its unconscionable use of weaponized aid.