Stephanie Gray, executive director of the Canadian Centre for Bio-Ethical Reform Photo by Vanessa Santilli

Fight to end abortion compared to slavery battle

  • July 3, 2012

TORONTO - When injustice becomes visible, it becomes intolerable, pro-life activist Jonathon Van Muren told an audience of about 150 spectators at the New Abortion Caravan's Toronto stop June 28.

"Great injustices have been conquered before," Van Muren told the crowd gathered at St. Vincent de Paul Church in Toronto's west end. He compared the fight to end abortion to the battles against slavery, child labour and segregation.

Public policy laws will only change when public opinion changes, he added. For these pro-lifers travelling with the caravan across Canada, graphic images of aborted fetuses is the way to achieve this goal.

The caravan crossed Canada over the last five weeks, stopping at cities along the way. Graphic images were shown to focus attention on the reality of abortion. The caravan wrapped up in Ottawa on July 2.

At the Toronto stop, following testimonies from each of the caravan members, a slideshow was shown clearly illustrating the progression of the child in the womb. To the left of the screen were images of the child at 11 weeks, 23 weeks, 27 weeks, among others. To the right were images of what an aborted fetus at various stages looked like. 

CaravanProtestsOnce a picture is in our heads, it's hard to get it out, said Stephanie Gray, executive director of the Canadian Centre for Bio-Ethical Reform, which is sponsoring the caravan.

"We are attracted to beauty and repelled by the ugly," said Gray, who then showed the audience a disturbing video of aborted fetuses, including dismembered limbs.

Alissa Golob, youth co-ordinator for Campaign Life Coalition, said CLC fully supports the New Abortion Caravan. She doesn't feel its tactics are too extreme.

"It's horrific but abortion is horrific and I've personally been out there on the streets using the graphic images… and have seen firsthand that hearts and minds have been changed," said Golob.

Mike Schouten, director of, was also in attendance.

"Public opinion is changing and it's time the pro-life movement united in working towards having that strong public opinion reflected in public policy," he said.

Meanwhile, outside St. Vincent de Paul Church, about 25 protesters gathered banging pots and pans, marching and chanting, "Not the Church, not the state, women will decide their fate!" The Ontario Coalition for Abortion Clinics and the Canadian Auto Workers union were behind the peaceful protest, along with members of the Ontario Public Service Employees Union and the United Steelworkers Toronto Area Council.

Carolyn Egan, spokesperson for the Ontario Coalition for Abortion Clinics, said while everyone has a right to their own views on the question of abortion, the coalition feels abortion should be part of the health care system and available to women to make that choice.

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