Canada’s Supreme Court authorised the practice of euthanasia, or medical-assistance-in-dying, in 2016 with the following exceptions forbidden by law: euthanasia for “mature minors,” i.e. those under the age of 18; psychiatric patients; and those whose illness falls beyond the ability of capacity to make an informed decision (for example, those suffering from Alzheimer’s disease). The Trudeau government tasked the Council of Canadian Academies to look into these three contentious exceptions and report to Parliament by the end of 2018. In advance of its report, another report has just been published in the prestigious British Medical Journal’s J Med Ethicswhich, to the suspicious mind, is laying the groundwork to prepare Canadians for further euthanasia incursions in our lives. (This shocking report made international news, casting Canada in a very bad light.) The Journal’s article, written by doctors, administrators and ethicists from Toronto’s Sick Kids Hospital, and backed by the University of Toronto’s Joint Centre for Bioethics, outlines policies and procedures to administer medically-assisted death to children, including parents not being informed of the child’s euthanized death, if the child so stipulates, until the child has died. Ontario does not require parents to be involved in a capable minor’s decision to refuse further treatment. It also claims that Sick Kids’ has doctors ‘right now’ willing to “safely and effectively” perform euthanasia on terminally ill youth 18 years and older who meet the criteria set out in the federal law. By “safely and effectively,” read: The doctors will make sure your child is killed in a manner that does not harm those who are participating in the gruesome task. Canadian Catholic bioethicist Bridget Campion is not surprised by the contents of the report, and states that if we truly want a culture of life “there are some things that we absolutely must make sure stay in place—that there can be Catholic health care, that there can be conscientious objection … We have to be thinking about communities of health, communities of wellness … a culture of care. If we can do that and make it so that people don’t want medical-assistance-in-dying, then we will have achieved something.” However, the Canadian train may have already left the station as our culture of death descends into the abyss.

On Sept. 30, Courtenay, B.C., Mayor Larry Jangula participated in his local LifeChain, holding a sign that said “Jesus Forgives and Heals.” A small controversy arose when a picture of him at the event circulated, in which he was standing beside pro-abortion activist Stasia Hasumi, who wrote pro-choice across her belly. She shared the image on social media and a small brouhaha ensued. Contacted by the local online news outlet Reporter James Wood claimed Jangula was defensive when questioned whether it was appropriate for an elected official to take part in a demonstration. Jangula said, “I think we still have a free country, where people have a right to believe something or not believe in it. I happen to believe in pro-life, and be a pro-life person.” Jangula said his participation in LifeChain did not affect his job because municipal issues include, “sewer and water and police and fire and sidewalks and parks.” He added, “those people who disagree with me on this topic probably wouldn’t vote for me anyway.” Unfortunately, on Oct. 20, Jangula lost his re-election bid, finishing second out of four candidates, with 2512 votes, about 400 votes behind Bob Wells. Aside from the single story, it did not appeared that the mayor’s participation in LifeChain was an election issue.

In 2016, by a 6-1 vote, the Supreme Court of Canada threw out the existing bestiality prohibition in the Criminal Code saying it was too vague. The R v. DLWdecision proved the truism that bad cases make bad laws. A convicted sexual offender forced a sexual encounter between his stepdaughter and the family dog but the Supreme Court justices ruled that because the sex was not penetrative, it did not qualify as bestiality. Justice Thomas Cromwell urged Parliament to rewrite the law and properly define the crime of bestiality. Two years later, the Trudeau government announced Bill C-84, the Bestiality and Animal Fight Act, as an animal protection law. Most of the focus is on animal fighting, but also states that the former Criminal Code wording on bestiality would be clarified to include “any contact for sexual purpose between a person and an animal.” The associated penalties (up to 10 years imprisonment) will not be amended. Justice Minister Jody Wilson-Raybould said the new law will broaden definitions of bestiality and animal cruelty in order to protect “children, other vulnerable individuals, and animals.” The Justice Department said Bill C-84 ensures “the protection of children and animals from cruelty and abuse.” The government seems to consider bestiality wrong because it violates the rights of animals rather than the dignity of human beings who partake in deviant sexual behavior with animals

United States

An important case on the defense of unborn disabled children was submitted to the U.S. Supreme Court on Oct. 12, 2018 by the State of Indiana. In 2016 a law was passed and signed by then-Governor of Indiana, now U.S. Vice President Mike Pence. The law said that “Indiana does not allow a fetus to be aborted solely because of the fetus’s race, color, national origin, ancestry, sex or diagnosis or potential diagnosis of the fetus having Down syndrome or any other disability.” Planned Parenthood and the American Civil Liberties Union sued and succeeded in getting a Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals to rule, in April 2018, against the law, finding it to be “unconstitutional.” Indiana’s Attorney General, Curtin Hill, has petitioned the Supreme Court to rule on its 2016 law. In his petition, Hill argues that the state’s ban merits consideration in light of eugenics concerns raised due to the high Downs syndrome abortion rates following advances in prenatal genetic testing.” The abortion rate for Down syndrome babies is 98 per cent in Denmark, 90 per cent in the U.K., 77 per cent in France and 67 per cent in the United States. Hill further argues that, “individuals already living with these same disabilities (i.e. Down syndrome) will no doubt receive the demeaning and stigmatizing message that they are not valued as productive members of society with equal human dignity.” He also makes a distinction between the Indiana law and Roe v. Wade: “Until the Indiana case, no court has ever extended Roeand Caseyto the decision of a woman otherwise willing to bear a child to terminate because she finds a particularchild unacceptable—i.e. to the decision of whichchild to bear. Indeed Roespecifically disavows that the woman’s right is absolute and that she is entitled to terminate her pregnancy at whatever time, in whatever way, and for whatever reason she alone chooses… Only this court (i.e. the Supreme Court) can correct the lower court’s misperception that Roeand Caseyban this law… Accordingly, the Court should grant certiorari and uphold Indiana’s authority to put an end to eugenic abortion.” It is now up to the Supreme Court to decide if it will take the case. Eight other states have followed Indiana’s lead and currently have sex-selection abortion bans on the books.

The following story shows how one pastor’s decision on pro-life has affected the parish and surrounding community. Holy Family Parish in Orlando, Florida is a large, wealthy parish. The previous pastor lived the pro-life message; he regularly gave pro-life homilies and collected thousands of dollars each year for local pregnancy centres. When he retired several years ago, his replacement, Fr. John Giel, also the Orlando diocese vicar-general under Bishop John Noonan, put an end to all pro-life activity in the parish, including preventing pro-life groups from putting voter education material in the church. As a result, a number of families moved to more life-affirming parishes and parishioners decreased their financial assistance to the parish; some moved their tithing to one of the local pregnancy centres. Recently, four daily communicants decided to take the pro-life message to the public sidewalk in front of the church, holding signs and handing out brochures, one reason being the pro-life message was not getting out to voters for the mid-term elections. Fr. Giel called the cops and 10 minutes later the sheriff arrived. When he saw that they were standing on public property, he gave them the thumbs up, saying: “You girls are fine. You have a perfect legal right to be where you are. Carry on.” One of the pro-lifers explained to the media that, in 2016, Florida had over 1,900 cases of human trafficking, forcing many of the women into prostitution and hence abortion. Orlando has four abortion mills, including a “mega Planned Parenthood with 27 surgical abortion rooms.” The pro-life message needs to be proclaimed. It is interesting to note that Fr. Giel is a close friend of Bishop Noonan, who, in 2016, banned Priests for Life from diocesan property and events.