Being in the business of reporting on abortion, by far the most heated battle of the culture wars, we at The Interim like to think that nothing can surprise us. Time and again, we’ve seen how abortion is unlike any other issue in our society, and that when it comes to abortion, the normal rules of fair play don’t apply.

Every once in a while, however, something happens to remind us that abortion really is a diabolical business, and that the pro-abortion mentality has profoundly corrupted our society. Every once in a while, even we at The Interim are taken aback at the spiral of injustice that legalized abortion has set in motion.

On Oct. 15, three journalists (two associated with this newspaper) were arrested while covering Linda Gibbons’ latest witness outside the Scott abortuary in Toronto. (Please see our lead story for a complete account.) They weren’t violating the Ontario government’s “bubble-zone” injunction; it applies only to pro-life demonstrators. They weren’t “obstructing a peace officer” (the offence they were charged with); none of them in any way interfered with the policemen carrying out their “duties.”

So what were they doing? On the face of it, they were simply reporting on a matter of public interest, which is their right and responsibility as journalists. But that in itself is completely uncontroversial, and it certainly doesn’t explain why they were arrested.

No; to understand why they were arrested, we have to look beyond the facts of the case, because the facts of the case show without a shadow of a doubt that these arrests were unlawful and a grave violation of freedom of the press.

These journalists were arrested because, while they didn’t intend it and probably weren’t even aware of it, they were exposing something which the powers-that-be don’t want exposed. They were exposing the fact that all the power of the government and the courts, and 13 police officers to boot, was being brought to bear on a tiny, peaceful grandmother, whose only “crime” is offering alternatives to women about to submit to the abortionist’s knife.

It’s actually a logical progression from the injunction itself. First the government, which is deeply complicit in the abortion holocaust, bans all forms of pro-life protest outside abortuaries – not because those protests were violent (they never were in this country), and not because they could untimately stop anyone from going through with an abortion, but because they pricked the consciences of those in the abortion industry and their legion of supporters in high places. Now they find that these pesky pro-lifers are still trying to exercise their civil rights, and still trying to speak up for the helpless victims of abortion – and, what’s worse, people are still hearing about it, through those few media outlets, like The Interim, which consider such protests newsworthy.

In other words, just as the injunction itself was all about covering up the shame of abortion, so too are these recent arrests motivated by the pangs of the guilty consciences of our rulers.

You see, no matter how “safe and legal” it gets, no matter whether the United Nations elevates it to the status of a “universal human right,” no matter how aggressively it is promoted by the most powerful in our society, no matter how well funded and “respectable” it becomes, abortion is and always will be a dirty, shameful business. You can take abortion out of the back alley, in other words, but you can’t take the back alley out of abortion. Abortionists and their supporters pride themselves on being progressive and liberal, but no matter how much they stifle their consciences, they know deep down that they’re killing babies.

The crime of these three journalists, and the crime we at The Interim proudly commit on a regular basis, is to remind them of it.

Perfectly Frank

Kudos to Interim columnist and editorial board member Frank Kennedy. More than a year of patient research paid off recently, when he managed to draw some high-profile attention to the heaps of tax-payer money being shovelled into the abortion industry every year.

Through a Freedom of Information Act request, Ontario government bureaucrats reluctantly released the details of one of the sweeter sweetheart deals between the government and abortion kingpin Henry Morgentaler. It turns out that Ontarians coughed up $567,325 to cover the rent for Morgentaler’s Toronto abortuary in 1997-98, and that by the end of his 10-year lease, taxpayers will have forked over $5 million.

The Interim had known for some time that the government had made a special deal to pay the rent for Morgentaler’s private facility, but it wasn’t until Kennedy’s Freedom of Information Act request came through that we knew the extent of it.

We didn’t leap on the story here at The Interim, however. After all, we thought, will our readers really be shocked at another $5 million, when we have already reported, on numerous occasions, that Canadian taxpayers paid $55,964,593 (yes, that’s almost $56 million) for abortions in fiscal year 1992-93 alone. (This figure was compiled, by the way, from Statistics Canada and Library of Parliament studies.)

While we mulled it over, Kennedy brought the information to Toronto Free Press, knowing it would be of special interest to their readers, who are of an economic-conservative bent. Editor Judi McLeod pursued the story with zeal, and the article she produced on it was picked up by the Ottawa Citizen. This is the first case we know of in which the basic statistics on tax funding of abortion in Canada were reported in a “mainstream” national medium.

In a delightful footnote, Morgentaler himself condescended to write a letter to the editor of the Citizen, huffing and puffing about the article, but nowhere denying the facts it reported.