This issue marks the 30th anniversary of The Interim newspaper. Our first issue was published by Campaign Life Coalition in March 1983 to counter the pro-abortion media bias. Specifically at the time, the mainstream media’s refusal to give adequate coverage of former abortionist Bernard Nathanson’s pro-life message during a speaking tour in Ontario that Winter, juxtaposed against the excessively favourable coverage that abortionist Henry Morgentaler’s advocacy of his right to kill the unborn, was too much to countenance. As noted in The Interim’s first editorial: “In the face of a media hostile to the pro-life cause, our responsibility becomes even broader. The favorable response to Morgentaler and his associates by the press, borders on the hysterical. The manipulation of the media by the pro-abortionists has been masterful.” In some ways, not much has changed in 30 years.
Some of those who helped produce that first paper thought it was going to be a one-off, published to cover Nathanson’s talks and that’s it. Others knew that the pro-life movement needed its own newspaper to inform and inspire activists and the general public about the outrageous assaults on human life at all stages and the denial of the dignity of every human being. The Interim covered the activities of the pro-life movement that were ignored by the popular press and provided an uncompromising pro-life view of current events. We were informed by the view that “a human life, from the moment of conception represents an individual, precious gift from God.”
This was an unabashedly Christian position, and indeed our publication’s name comes from our original motto: Semper Fidelis in The Interim. That is, to remain always faithful during the interregnum when the Canadian state and Canadian public had turned its back on natural law and moral decency to permit the execution of tens of thousands of children in the womb each year.
If one were to re-read articles from those early years, what is noticeable is the sense of hope. The late Joseph Borowski once wrote that in a few years the battle will be won and the pro-life movement could decamp. Three decades later, the fight continues. But we are an Easter people; hope is also a gift from God that allows us to stand up for the rights of the unborn and everyone vulnerable to the Culture of Death when there seems no chance of victory. We cannot despair, no matter how long we challenge injustice, simply because we do not see the fruits of our labours.
The Interim has educated tens of thousands of Canadians about life and family issues, encouraging many to become active. Those generations of pro-life and pro-family activists have built a foundation on which the next generation of activists will continue to resist abortion, euthanasia, and other abominations against human dignity. As we wrote in these pages 30 years ago: “in the interim, until the law is changed to protect a human life, we will be here, always faithful, to champion the rights of those whose voices cannot be heard.” We thank those of you who have been with us, whether from day one or just recently.