When the University of Western Ontario awarded notorious abortionist Henry Morgentaler an honourary doctor of laws degree as part of its spring convocation ceremonies this year, vice-president Greg Moran justified the move by claiming the choice of such a controversial recipient was in keeping with the university’s commitment to “open, courageous, respectful and civil debate,” which leads to “a humane, caring and tolerant society” marked by “diversity.”

Fine. That being the case, we’re certain we can expect UWO to award a prominent pro-life Canadian an honourary degree in the near future. There is certainly no shortage of worthy recipients and we’re sure Interim readers could easily come up with numerous names of individuals who could ably take the podium at an upcoming convocation.

Now, we acknowledge that Henry Morgentaler has many credits to his name. He has been involved, directly and indirectly, in the elimination of tens of thousands of preborn human lives – perhaps more – and has contributed to a Canadian birthrate that is far from even replacement level. At the same time, the Canadian health system is being drained by abortion of tens of millions of dollars a year that could be going to real health care needs and numerous women are beginning to come forth with accounts of how their abortions have harmed them physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually.

That’s a difficult record of accomplishments to try to match. But we’d like to suggest Dr. Barrie de Veber as a potential recipient of an honourary degree from the University of Western Ontario.

Currently president of the deVeber Institute for Bioethics and Social Research, he is a professor emeritus of pediatrics and oncology at UWO and an internationally recognized pioneer in palliative pediatric care. He also co-founded Camp Trillium, which serves young cancer patients and their siblings with year-round support programs, and is a founding board member of entities including the Ronald McDonald House in London, Ont., the Sunshine Foundation of Canada and the Childhood Cancer Research Association of Southwestern Ontario.

De Veber is esteemed for his work in managing a malady known as RH hemolytic disease and has directed the pediatric hematology and oncology program at the Children’s Hospital of Western Ontario, where his medical team performed the first amniocentesis and intrauterine fetal transfusion in eastern Canada.

So we wait, with bated breath, whether the University of Western Ontario will live up to its high-minded principles and show its commitment to true diversity by recognizing one of its own, Dr. Barrie de Veber.