While Morgentaler’s visits to Guelph, London, Waterloo and Halifax received much media attention and spirited pro-life protests, his public appearances recently at universities in Toronto and Montreal almost passed by unnoticed. Press reports were few and ignored for the most part the low-key pro-life protests.
In Montreal, Morgentaler told McGill University students that he was happy to be on home ground once again, after the “harassment” in other parts of the country. He congratulated the Parti-Quebécois government for its decision not to prosecute free-enterprise abortionists after he had received three jury acquittals.
In Toronto, Morgentaler spoke first at Convocation Hall and then at Erindale College, part of the University of Toronto, where he was in a debate setting with Gwendolyn Landolt, a pro-life lawyer. The most noteworthy aspect of this debate was the inequity of the fees paid to the participants by the Student Union. Morgentaler received $3,000, his standard fee for speaking engagements; Mrs. Landolt was given $50. Pro-life speakers frequently accept engagements for no fee at all because, as Mrs. Landolt pointed out in the debate “we’re not out to make money.” However, simple justice should apply to give both sides of the debate not only equal time but equal pay.