Opinion Column

The thirty-year silent Holocaust

By Rev. Eric Strachan

I’ve discovered that all those who are for abortion have already been born. AUTHOR UNKNOWN

The year 2018 is unquestionably one for some very significant anniversaries right here in Canada.

On May 24 we’ll celebrate the 100th anniversary of women being given the right to vote in federal elections and six days later on May 30 we’ll remember as a nation the 50th anniversary of Canada’s first heart transplant performed at The Montreal Heart Institute by Dr. Pierre Grondin. Later on in the Fall of the year we will mark the 100th anniversary of the Spanish flu epidemic which ravaged our country and left in its wake a death toll of around 50,000 people. For our Canadian Forces and military veterans Nov. 11 will be the centenary remembrance of Armistice Day and the end of the 1914-18 war.

But for many others, Jan. 28 will mark a 30th anniversary, not one however to be celebrated, for it was on that date in 1988 that The Supreme Court of Canada struck down this country’s abortion law as unconstitutional, citing that the existing criminal law violated a woman’s right under the Charter of Human Rights and Freedoms to life, liberty and security of the person.

The January 1988 ruling also became known as the ‘Morgentaler decision’, for it was Dr. Henry Morgentaler, a Jewish Polish born physician from Montreal who became the principal advocate for a woman’s right to abortion here in our nation. Since that unforgettable day in Canadian history it is estimated that we have aborted somewhere in the region of three million babies. Tragically, to our shame as a nation, this has been a ‘silent holocaust’, the merciless mass slaughter of innocent in-utero life!

It was Dr. Margaret Somerville, the founding director of the McGill Centre for Medicine, Ethics and Law in Montreal and a pro-life advocate, who once recalled the moment when she was involved in a public debate centring on the issue of abortion. Ms. Somerville indicated that at one junction in the debate her opponent shoved his finger up his nose, then withdrawing it and raising the index finger of his hand aloft for the audience to see, declared that a human embryo has no more status than the mucous on the tip of his finger. Tragically as far as our Canadian Criminal Code is concerned the baby in the womb throughout the duration of the nine-month pregnancy cycle has no legal status, no personhood, no humanity, and thus no legitimate claim to the rights of the Charter of Human Rights and Freedoms.

The Criminal Code in Section 223 (1) declares that “A child becomes a human being within the meaning of this act when it has completely proceeded, in a living state, from the body of its mother, whether or not, (a) it has breathed, (b) it has an independent circulation, or (c) the navel string is severed.” How totally absurd this is! A second before a baby begins it’s exit from the birth canal it is not a human being, but when the last of it’s toes emerge and all seven pounds and 14 ounces of it has completely proceeded from its mother’s body, it is now a human being. Go figure the insane logic of that!

Let me further baffle you with the irrationality of our laws. Part (2) of Section 223 of the Code states under the heading ‘Killing Child’, “(2) A person commits homicide when he causes injury to a child before or during its birth as a result of which the child dies after becoming a human being.” Kill that newborn child a second after it has emerged from the birth canal and it's infanticide, but end its life through abortion on the final day of the nine-month cycle before the birth pains begin and you walk away Scot-free, for at that point the child is not really a human being! This is not only completely illogical, it is absolutely and categorically unjust.

We’ve witnessed a silent holocaust in our country over the last 30 years and created in our nation a culture of abortion on demand. Medical science certifies beyond any doubt that the heart of the little one in the womb beats at six weeks, its thumb goes spontaneously to its mouth at 10 weeks, and it swims around in the amniotic fluid sac at 15 weeks. How can anyone say justifiably that this is not a human being?

Some years ago I told the story of Stephanie Sonegro, a 17-year-old high school drop out who found herself with an unwanted pregnancy. Providentially she went into a Pregnancy Crisis Centre where she was asked if she would like to have a 4-D sonogram, a multi-dimensional piece of technology that would take her right into the womb and give her a panoramic picture of her baby. Says Stephanie, “When I saw my first sonogram of the baby, and I burst into tears, I thought, why would I want to kill something that’s living?” Indeed, why would anyone want to kill something that is living? But here in this country of Canada we continue the abhorrent practice.

To our shame as a nation, in 2008 we awarded Dr. Henry Morgentaler the Order of Canada for advocating for the rights of a woman to abort the child in her womb. I wonder if the Jewish doctor had ever read the words of one of Israel’s great heroes, King David. “For you God, created my inmost being, you knit me together in my mother’s womb, I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made...I was made in the secret place...I was woven together.” (The Bible, Psalm 139:13-15) Unequivocally for David life began at conception. There in that microscopic embryo, gender, humanity and personhood was conceived.

Unbelievers and cynics like Margaret Somerville’s adversary in debate may raise their one-finger in disdain of human life in the womb, but more than three million babies, voices from eternity will rise up in dissent and condemnation on Jan. 28, 2018 and shout out in unison “Shame on you Canada!” 

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