Readers Speak Out: May 26, 2019

  • May 24, 2019


As 50 years have passed since the legalization of abortion in Canada, we should acknowledge some of the early pioneers in the fight to stop the passage of this inhumane law.

In 1967, when Pierre Trudeau was first preparing his omnibus bill which legalized abortion, my parents, George and Olive Heron, along with John Hackett, Margaret Summerhill and Fr. Joseph O’Neil, formed a committee, The Emergency Organization for the Defense of Unborn Children (EODUC). The group’s aim was to protest any amendment to the criminal code which would permit abortion.

My mother was designated president of the group. Between their inaugural meeting and the passage of the bill in 1969, the EODUC sent a petition to Ottawa with over 70,000 signatures, an unheard of number at that time. My mother and other members also spoke to the Parliamentary Committee and presented a brief. Once the bill passed, EODUC was folded and the group joined others who continued the fight. 

This is part of the history of the fight to stop abortion and should not be omitted or forgotten. My parents are both in their 90s and still fighting in their own way.

Susan Kennedy,

Ajax, Ont.

Plea for peace

It does not make sense to see in a video Pope Francis kissing the feet of four Sudanese officials in his plea for peace. This is a baffling contrast to his reaction to the four cardinals who requested clarification on some points in the encyclical Amoris Laetitia, which the Pope did not entertain. 

Accurate words to describe my reaction are shocked and disturbed that the Pope would go that far to make his point to the Sudanese. At the same time, I am confused why he did not give the cardinals the clarification requested for the sake of peace in the Church.

Rufino Ty,

Brampton, Ont. 

New approach

I challenge my fellow pro-lifers to look at the past 50 years and ask if, given the radical lack of progress we have made reversing abortion since it became legal, it makes sense to continue to fight for the right to life in this same manner. We have lost in the legislative arena, so let’s put our energy where we can make a difference and help to save unborn lives. 

The question is: how do we move from tweeting harsh words to changing our society for the better? 

We need to accept that the abortion debate will not be reopened politically in Canada and that the best way to save the lives of unborn children is through strong social policy and supporting mothers. 

We also need to work with government to create policy that can protect and create safe space for Christian pro-lifers and others. A huge olive branch would be freedom of conscience. If all Canadians were allowed to practise their beliefs and felt their right was respected to not support and not participate in abortion, we could begin to see some excellent alliances. 

Marie Francis, 

Barrie, Ont.

Strong deterrent

Retired Pope Benedict XVI, in his attempt to explain the causes that let to clerical abuse, should have emphasized the coverup actions by the hierarchy. Had bishops in the 1940s and 1950s removed abusive clergy the word would have gotten around and it is very likely that this would have been a strong deterrent. 

I support the proposal that a committee be set up in each diocese consisting of the parent(s) of an abused child, a survivor, a psychiatrist, a couple of women, clergy and a lawyer. Let them evaluate the evidence (of abuse claims) and if they find it credible turn it over to the police.

Jack Murphy,

Meteghan Centre, N.S. 

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