OTTAWA – “Our future children”, an examination of the consequences of Bill C-47, was the theme of a seminar organized in April by the Catholic Women’s League of the Ottawa archdiocese.
Bill C-47, which deals with human reproductive and genetic technologies, has generated wide debate since it came to light on the public agenda.
Speakers addressing the issue included Reform MP Sharon Hayes, psychotherapist Dr. Robert McDonald, philosophy professor David DeMarco, and artist Karen Urlocher.
Sharon Hayes said pro-life, pro-family elements should attempt to become involved in debate around the proposed legislation. “It is almost sure that the bill will be treated as a moral issue by the Reform caucus,” she said, adding that, “no parties will outlaw all reproductive technologies and therefore it will likely be that the debate will focus on regulatory matters.”
She said a moral framework is necessary in which the debate will be centered.
Dr. McDonald discussed the legislation from the Catholic Church teaching position. He expressed a fear of eugenics, which could become a reality with new technologies at hand.
“We can oppose this kind of technology and legislation which flies in the teeth of God’s design for us as human beings, unique and as products of love,” he said.
Dr. DeMarco approached the topic of reproductive technology be citing common values which lend cohesiveness to the traditional family. Love between husband and wife he said is a cornerstone of the family. It is the lobe which flows to the children and which cements the family bond.
Karen Urlocher described personal experiences in attempting to conceive a biological child. She brought to the audience a practical application of technology and faith.
A major problem with Bill C-47 is that it would allow embryo experimentation up to 14 days after conception.
The bill died in the House as the election was called, but it could be revived with the formation of a new government.