If there’s one thing that history has taught the pro-life and pro-family movements over the three decades or so, it’s that the subtlety of evil must never be underestimated.
This principle once again came back to the fore during the recent imbroglio in Halifax concerning Dr. Nancy Morrison, the murder charge laid against her, and – almost predictably – the dropping of that charge. As in the Robert Latimer case, terms such as “mercy” and “compassion” were bandied around which abandon in the attendant media hullabaloo; little did it seem to matter that a young girl and an older gentleman were dead in the aftermath of both incidents.
Both episodes seemed to serve as vehicles for euthanasia supporters to issue calls for more “discussion” on the issue – apparently with an eye to winning looser laws against that practice.
Veterans of the pro-life fight likely have a strong sense of deja vu in the Wake of the Morrison case. In looking back 30 years, who can forget the impassioned arguments for the legalization of abortion? Thousands of women were dying of coat hangar abortions, we were told back then, and legalization was needed to stem the alleged bloodshed.
(It wasn’t until much later, of course, that Dr. Bernard Nathanson admitted such claims were made without any substantial evidence to back them up – the lies fit the pro-abortion agenda, he said, and that’s all that really mattered.)
People of conscience seem to have been caught unaware when the notorious omnibus bill legalizing abortion (and several other questionable things) was passed by the Canadian Parliament in 1969. Perhaps there was an unspoken hope that the bill would be as far as things would go – that abortions would only be committed when the life or health of the mother was seriously endangered.
It was virtually inevitable, then that things would continue to slide downhill until they hit a nadir with the Supreme Court’s 1988 decision throwing out all laws concerning abortion in Canada. Although by that time, a number of pro-life groups and other organizations sympathetic to the pro-life cause had become firmly established and had a significant voice, the damage was done 19 years before ans was being maintained – indeed exacerbated – by our governing elites in the intervening years. For pro-life groups, it unfortunately was a case of trying to close the barn door after the horses had escaped.
Same line reasoning
Which brings us to the Morrison case. Once again, the same lines of reasoning are being applied to justify (or at least diminish the penalties against) killing. Once again, the most extreme cases are being paraded before the media in order to win the sympathy of an uniformed and misinformed public. And once again, the legal system is failing in its most basic responsibility – to protect the right to life, a cardinal principle of our Constitution.
Make no mistake: a failure to nip the euthanasia-assisted suicide-mercy killing juggernaut in the bud now will only lead to more, unimaginable horrors ahead. At a time when health services are being scaled back everywhere (ostensibly dur to funding crunches), is it really that hard to foresee more health care personnel taking people’s lives – and death – into their own hands in the cause of some misplaced priority or other?
Partial-birth abortion, fetal experimentation and other atrocities were unimaginable to the fence-sitters on the abortion issue back in 1969. Now. Of course, we have them all – and more.
As one philosopher or another has pointed out, truth is applicable in, and to, all situations. It’s just not good enough to say that the principle of a right to life is applicable to some situations, but not to others, or that such a principle can be bent way out of shape in the cause of expediency, efficiency, mercy, compassion, economics, population control, etc.
The right to life is the right to life. Period. A failure to recognize the subtlety of evil, as history has only too tragically shown us.