I suppose we have to credit Justin Trudeau with determination: he is certainly sticking to his guns regarding the abortion issue, and has now said that a woman’s right to kill her unborn child is more important than the conscience rights of MPs when it comes to voting about abortion. He, of course, would never phrase it quite like that but that’s what it amounts to. No Liberal MPs will be permitted to allow their religion, life experience, or moral structure to in any way sway their voting behavior, and party diktat is now more significant than one’s relationship with The Almighty. One also wonders how Trudeau would treat any female members of his caucus who dared to disobey his macabre orders regarding children in the womb; goodness me, Justin telling women what to do and how to behave when it comes to what he refers to as “a woman’s reproductive rights” – oh the humanity; oh the irony!
We know, of course, that all of this has far more to do with trying to win over the NDP vote than with the safety of women and the integrity of the unborn. Trudeau has been told that he has to position the Liberals as a far more left-wing alternative to Harper’s Conservatives rather than a slightly milder version, and that to take Quebec from the NDP he has to offer Quebecers something more radical than the Ignatieff model that proved such a disaster.
It’s a horribly cynical move but perhaps quite a clever one too. Most committed pro-lifers abandoned the Liberal Party some time ago, even though the Conservatives have hardly been friends to the movement and have done nothing of any substance to restrict or reduce abortion in Canada. The difference, however, is that there are genuinely pro-life MPs in senior cabinet positions and one of them, Jason Kenney, may well run for the leadership of the party. The NDP and now the Liberals do not allow any candidates to be selected if they refuse to support fully funded abortion at every stage of the life of an unborn baby.
What Trudeau has also demanded is that, in effect, candidates lie. What is worse is that so many of these individuals are prepared to do so. They claim to be pro-life, but also make a commitment to ignore or deny their views when their parliamentary careers are in question. Odd really. It’s not about being pro-coffee or even pro-Leafs, but believing that life begins at conception. It either does or it doesn’t. There’s no in-between, whether we like it or not. It’s going to be quite the filtering process as unscrupulous candidates reveal if they were ever genuinely pro-life or not.
Which leads us to how the various churches should deal with all this. The evangelicals have been far more consistent, with most evangelical MPs maintaining their stance and few if any fallen away politicians embraced at evangelical churches. The Catholic Church, on the other hand, has frequently turned the other cheek, not in the positive sense but in an effort to allow disgracefully pro-abortion MPs to receive Communion and be not only allowed but revered and praised in Catholic circles. It’s been ostensibly Catholic Prime Ministers and cabinet ministers who have established the abortion culture of this country and seldom have Catholic bishops and archbishops said a word to remonstrate or demonstrate.
Nor should we pretend that this is a battle of issues and that we can forgive pro-abortion politicians because they are sound on other aspects of social justice. There is no contradiction at all between being pro-life and also supporting, for example, socialized medicine, generous welfare, and an ethical foreign policy. Those who use this argument are merely looking for excuses, trying to obfuscate their cowardice beneath a cloud of confusion. As for a commitment to feminism, it’s about gender equality, whereas abortion is the very opposite and directly targets unborn girls.
Back to Justin Trudeau. He is an empty vessel but his handlers know how to run and win a campaign and right now their man is flying high – in every sense! – in the polls. A Liberal victory will not introduce more abortion because that’s almost impossible in the current situation, but it will further exile the debate around the issue and make it even more difficult to be a pro-lifer in the public square. Trudeau still describes himself as a faithful Catholic; let’s see how he and that is dealt with in the months to come and what will be the result when the election comes around.
Michael Coren’s latest book, Hatred: Islam’s War on Christianity, comes out this month. He can be booked for speaking at firstname.lastname@example.org.