Monday, May 19, 2008

Canada's Ridiculous New Abortion Debate, Part 2

A while ago I wrote about the covert attempt to re-introduce the abortion debate in Canada via a private member's bill, noting that the present Criminal Code gives more protection to pregnant women than the new amendment would (read: very little protection at all) but that the C-484 bill on its own probably doesn't matter very much one way or the other.

I said the justice committee, being stonewalled, would pretty much mean the end of the bill, but Liberal MP Brent St. Denis has other ideas, having introduced a bill of his own into the House with the attention of heading off C-484 at the pass, so to speak. (The news article at the link is a Christian evangelical one, so naturally it repeats a deceptive Environics poll from last year in which Canadians say they'd support legislation on this issue). This is potentially even more pointless than the original bill from Ken Epp, since it would formalize something that's already done - consideration of pregnancy or spousal abuse as aggravating factors in sentencing. (The new bill is short and to the point.)

Ken Epp strikes back in the Ottawa Citizen, where he wrote an asinine screed late last week on women's "so-called right to end a pregnancy." If you wanted a clue to Epp's hidden intentions here, there it is. "So-called right"? I realize Epp is only a lawmaker, and therefore has little knowledge about well, the law - but perhaps he should beef up on his Supreme Court precedents, because it is a right, and has been for some while now.

Later, he says the resort to the abortion debate is a "scare tactic" by various groups supposedly conspiring against him. Is Epp really that dense? He used to be a college instructor. He ought to be smarter than he's making himself out to be.

As usual, Epp arrogantly claims that he's standing up for freedom of choice - "Let us not abandon those pregnant women who choose life for their babies." Right.