“My ‘ideology’ is therefore pro-scientific research that is untainted by political correctness, and pro-informed consent. But our culture can’t seem to get beyond the “rights” aspect of abortion into the “data” aspect.” –Barbara Kay
I have never argued that abortion is the only social problem we have. Or even the worst social problem we have. That said, it’s a terrible problem, a blight on a compassionate, democratic country, that we would accept abortion, even embrace it as a “solution.”
So why don’t people see it as such? Lea Singh explains. She leaves us with a question though:
Breaking the mass hypnosis is an urgent need. But how? I am not quite sure.
When I pitched this piece to the Post, I told them, truthfully, that I did not want to write about this Planned Parenthood debacle in the USA. It started in July and I avoided writing about it, until now. I felt compelled when I saw Planned Parenthood Ottawa using depravity to raise funds.
Hopefully the general public in Canada is starting to get a better idea of why Planned Parenthood donations might diminish. BTW, for the reader who is aghast and reading this for the first time, Planned Parenthood does not contest the videos, the veracity of the videos or the fact that they sell human parts. They only contest that they make profit by it. Which is the part that would get them in trouble with the law. Whereas the rest of it is merely deeply troubling.
BTW, many are asking me, how do we know Planned Parenthood in Canada doesn’t do the same thing? They don’t have clinics, is why. They can refer to private clinics and hospitals. They can support their USA counterpart from the sidelines–which they do–but without the clinical capacity to do abortions, they can’t actually sell human body parts/babies/beating hearts. That’s my understanding at this point. If anyone has capacity to correct, feel free. What we don’t know is whether private abortion clinics and/or hospitals are engaging in this practice.
Why specifically now would Planned Parenthood donations diminish? This a question they would rather let fade into obscurity.
On July 28, a group calling themselves the Center for Medical Progress began releasing the results of an investigative sting operation into the practices of Planned Parenthood south of the border. Two actors, posing as buyers of organs for research purposes, took undercover video purportedly showing that Planned Parenthood in the United States engages in the sale of fetal hearts, livers, kidneys and heads (“calvarium”) for profit.
The video evidence, all of which is available in full online, shows Planned Parenthood executives in different states discussing fetal organs with infinitely less concern than your auto mechanic discusses car parts.
Quotes include one Planned Parenthood director, Dr. Deborah Nucatola, saying, “We’ve been very good at getting heart, lung, liver … so I’m not gonna crush that part, I’m gonna basically crush below, I’m gonna crush above and I’m gonna see if I can get it all intact.” This while drinking a glass of wine and munching on a salad.
Additional videos show Planned Parenthood lab techs showing off bloody body parts — little legs, hands and arms — to the actors posing as buyers, declaring when it was “another boy” or a twin. The discussion of financial benefits is frequent and forthcoming, with one Planned Parenthood exec saying that “she wants a Lamborghini.”
Are times ever so tough that the body parts of aborted fetuses should go up for sale?
~After I discussed the matter with Sean Hannity on Fox News last week, I got a barrage of abuse from abortion absolutists with a familiar talking point: abortions are “only three per cent” of what Planned Parenthood does. This statistic is very curiously formulated: The group said that abortions account for three per cent of the 10.9m services its provides in nearly 700 clinics.
Even if you know what that actually means, the correct response is: So what? Do American liberals listen to what they’re saying: What percentage of a business model does selling baby parts have to be for it to disturb you? Any murderer could make the same defense: Murderers actually spend very little time murdering. For 99.99 per cent of the time Major Hasan was providing psychiatric services to US military personnel, and standing on the table, opening fire and yelling “Allahu Akbar!” was only 0.01 per cent of his business model. So what?
That dentist in Minnesota everyone wants to string up: C’mon, give the guy a break. Ninety-seven percent of his time is devoted to cavities and root canals. The lion-killing portion of his schedule is minimal.
If you were told that the fellow at the convenience store devotes 97 per cent of his time to selling groceries and gasoline but once in a while he likes to go down to the seedy part of town, chop up a hooker and leave the pieces in a trunk at the airport, but don’t worry, it’s only three per cent of what he does, would you still want to buy a quart of milk from the guy? American liberals say: What’s the problem? They’re so used to looking the other way, they’ve immobilized their moral compass.
Planned Parenthood Federation of Canada has not warned you that their sister organization in the United States is currently embroiled in a ghoulish controversy involving the sale of preborn baby hearts, brains, lungs, kidneys, livers, and whatever other tissue they can sell.
Watch this. From the Center for Medical Progress.
Does Planned Parenthood Federation of Canada have any connection with the American organization? Regardless, they share a name. Will they stand up and condemn this?
Where there are human parts there are human beings. These macabre episodes from the Center for Medical Progress show that. For so long pro-choicers have claimed the fetal pictures are false.
We need to put an end to this and by “this,” I mean abortion.
Nonetheless, I still say it should be made over the counter:
All this said, yes, please do make the Pill over the counter. Perhaps when it sits beside Tylenol on a drugstore shelf, advocacy groups will stop yammering on about how the Pill is a major component of women’s rights. Or that it is patronizing when doctors show concern. Perhaps then we will stop targeting excellent doctors who won’t prescribe it for very good reasons.
Which gets interpreted by Huff Post commentators as meaning I want to reduce access to all contraception. If you are pro-woman and pro-life, please feel free to leave a reasonable comment, for or against the Pill (so that Huff Post folks can misinterpret and distort what you say, sigh.)
Many of you have heard of this woman by now. She says she’s a 26-year-old graduate student who lives in a state that requires a 72-hour waiting period between a consultation for an abortion procedure and the procedure itself.
On July 7, this anonymous woman will give pro-lifers 72 hours to donate one million dollars to her website. If they do, she’ll let her child live, place the child for adoption and put the money in a trust for him or her. If not, she’ll abort her child and return the donations.
She anticipates that pro-lifers won’t give her the money, which she will interpret as pro-lifers only caring about babies, and not women. To make her point, she’ll abort her child on July 10.
Her website domain name is ProlifeAntiWoman. We, at ProWomanProLife, felt compelled to respond to her open letter with our own.
Dear Anonymous Pro-Choicer,
Pro-lifers believe that their position is consistent with a worldview that demonstrates care for all humans, whether they are at their earliest stages of development inside their mothers’ wombs, or outside in the world, fighting for their rights. We see that women remain particularly vulnerable in today’s world. For example, millions of women are exploited each year in sex trafficking. In some countries, girls are still fighting for the right to be educated, or simply to drive and generally to provide a better world for their own daughters.
All girls also face a horrific battle just to survive, at their earliest stage of development. As The Economist reported a few years ago, millions of girls are being aborted due to cultural preferences for male children. The shortage of women in certain countries leads to more sex trafficking, providing a correlated rights abuse between easy access to abortion and human trafficking, something the compassion of pro-choicers is blind toward.
In short, we care about women too, in ways you don’t and we endeavour to walk our talk. We regularly donate to charities that seek to end the sex-trafficking of women, help girls attend schools in cultures that discourage it and also seek to raise awareness about the value and the life of females, even as they grow in the womb. We give to pregnancy care centres that extend care well beyond a couple of diapers, and to pro-adoption charities. There are numerous pro-lifers we are aware of caring for children with disabilities, with fetal alcohol syndrome, even babies who are addicted to drugs their mothers took, perhaps not even knowing they were pregnant before they gave birth. Our care extends regardless of age, level of development or their abilities or political outlook. We even care about you.
While we cannot give funds to your campaign for the reasons set out below, if you’re willing to waive your anonymity, we’d willingly provide our tax receipts to you, and we’d ask you to do the same in all fairness. We’ve all been giving for years. When we had more funds, we’ve given more, and during hard years of financial difficulty, we’ve given less, but we’ve given. We’ve also volunteered, helped women in our lives with childcare and can provide you with information so you can ask them about it.
I hope you’re reasonable enough to understand why it’s ridiculous to expect hard-working citizens to donate one million dollars to an anonymous person on the internet, when our funds could go to registered charities doing great work that have financial reporting and accountability measures in place.
Would you donate one million dollars to an anonymous pro-lifer who simply promised to spend your money on one endeavour or another? Of course not.
The argument that underlies your campaign is one that pro-choicers have been making for years. It’s the oft-repeated ‘Pro-lifers don’t care about women, and they don’t care about babies once they are born. They have no right to speak against abortion unless they are willing to care for these children.’
You’ve actually taken the rhetoric an unfathomable step further by being willing to sacrifice your own child in order to make this point. The argument that you’ve adopted basically states that if you’re unwilling to personally provide a solution for a certain problem, then you’ve lost the ability to speak out against that problem or injustice. An example to expose the intellectual poverty of your argument: We assume you care about domestic violence. Yet we also assume you do not provide a shelter in your apartment or home for every woman in your community who suffers abuse. Would it be reasonable on our part to then turn around and void your concern for spousal abuse?
The same could be said for any number of charitable endeavours.
We might add that yes, there are some activist pro-lifers who do little more than aim to draw attention to the plight of people who are killed in their mother’s womb. If we changed the issue—say to those who draw attention to the plight of the prisoner in totalitarian regimes, or those who draw attention to the plight of the hungry by doing nothing more than the odd 24-hour fast, we wouldn’t say that is wrong. We’d say they are doing what they can. The problem is that with the pro-life movement, you reject our premise and fail to see fighting for the human right to life at all ages as a valid cause. If you accepted the cause, you’d accept the effort, however meager. Pro-lifers are not the only ones who can be charged with hypocrisy.
In short, the argument that underlies your campaign is flawed. Your means to achieving it is one most reasonable people would never consider endorsing, much less financially supporting. And you’re making a life or death decision on these poor considerations. And getting the media to buy into your web page, suggesting you are not without resource or at very least, not without great media contacts.
In your state of residence, you are free to make a choice to kill your child. As you noted, you are also free to choose to place your child in a loving home of your choice. In the end, the choice is clearly yours, in every conceivable way. At ProWomanProLife, we have the tagline “Canada without abortion, by choice,” asking women to look outside politics and laws to consider in their hearts what abortion is. May you choose to do so, instead of launching manipulative and exploitative publicity stunts.
Faye Sonier & Andrea Mrozek
Changing someone’s mind on abortion is hard. There are parallels to the level of emotion in the vaccine debate. I received this article about a mom who changed her mind about vaccines and I thought there are some takeaways here for the business of discussing abortion.
My personal takeaways in talking with folks? 1) Avoid sarcasm. 2) Avoiding sarcasm means avoiding discussing with certain people who default to it so readily that they don’t have an open mind for discussion and will quickly suck you into the sarcastic abyss, which quickly leads to anger. Perhaps it starts with anger, I’m not sure. 3) Once you’ve decided who you will discuss with–and preferably it’s someone you know well, who you genuinely love in all ways,* always consider you could be wrong. But always consider you could be right, and the person you are talking with is sensible. 4) Finally, never expect a conversion right there. People take time.** If that person is me, they take a very long time to ruminate, go back and forth, consider the other side. No one, I’ve decided, will ever listen to my pro-life spiel and then say right in front of me, you know, you are right. I’ve invested myself in a flawed worldview, but today, all that is going to change.
Bold is mine.
When you changed your minds about vaccines do you think (honestly) there was anything anyone could have said to you to change your mind?
Maybe? How they approached me would have made a huge difference. Respectfully validating and addressing versus sarcastically dismissing my concerns and questions would have made a difference. Building our trust through caring, patient dialogue would have helped. Just talking to me at all like an intelligent caring person would have helped.
If someone had said in a genuinely kind tone. “Tara, you are a great mom who loves her kids dearly. I know there is so much confusion about vaccines. I care about you and want to help you make a informed decision you feel really confident in. Would you be willing to share some of your concerns with me so we could go through them one by one? In the end it’s your decision.*** I want to make sure you are totally confident in your decision since it’s so important.” I would like to think I would have stepped willingly into that kind of conversation. There was no threat or attack that would trigger defensiveness.
*This is what makes social media a bad forum for just about any genuine attempt at conversing. Everyone, at one point or another, ends up sounding shrill on social media. All it takes is one bad moment and you’ve done the Facebook post, and it’s all over for civil discourse.
**People do take time, and this is why I find strident pro-choicers to be false friends to a woman in need. We all need time to make good decisions. We all, I think, go back and forth with our decisions. Unplanned pregnancy does not allow for this. You can go back and forth, back and forth, but if you choose abortion, it is final and there is absolutely no undo button. If you choose life, can you decide not to parent? Absolutely. But if you choose abortion, you don’t ever get to reconsider. It’s cruel and the main problem is that a woman never knows whether she will be the one to mourn or regret her decision until it is all over. Some women don’t regret it. Hurray for them; it appears they all run for politics and make their point of view sound super mainstream. For the woman who does regret it, and lives a cycle of depression and pain for many years, well, strident pro-choicers have no answer for this and appear not to care, beyond blaming me for “creating stigma.”
*** This makes pro-lifers intensely uncomfortable. Do I wish abortion were not a choice? Absolutely. Is it available as one? Absolutely. We have clinics that are readily available and your loved one contemplating abortion does not need to talk to you first before she goes and books herself in. I don’t have time to go into the implications of what this actually means in practically attempting to counsel someone out of abortion, however, I do know mentioning that mothers make a choice for or against abortion is a sticking point with some pro-lifers. The mere fact that I acknowledge the facts on the ground leaves some pro-lifers wondering if I am actually pro-life. Frustrating, that.
Let me first say that the #FHRITP trend is misogynistic and demeaning, and I applaud Shauna Hunt for not being cowered by the men who were harassing her. Shawn Simoes, the ridiculously unlikable man who has been fired from his job after being recorded supporting the #FHRITP trend, is not a popular guy at the moment with good reason, and I doubt he will be able to escape his social media footprint anytime soon. However, I wonder if firing him, though it is completely understandable, will actually address the underlying problem, which is misogyny itself. We have all united in our disapproval of Shawn Simoes, and this has provided us with the illusion that in terminating his employment (in which he earned a substantial salary of $106k, which is always highlighted in the news coverage to emphasize the high level of justice being carried out) all is once right again. But I have to wonder, is all right in the world once again?
We’re all appeased by the outcome: Man says vulgar thing, man is punished. But men do say vulgar things, a lot in my experience, and sexual harassment takes place in nearly every workplace I’ve ever been in or heard of. This is a problem, is it not? Violence against women? Misogyny? Is firing Shawn Simoes going to fix all that? I think French theorist René Girard would argue that it simply calms us back into accepting the culture and the society the way that it is, but leaves it ultimately unchallenged and unchanged. If Simoes is a scapegoat, “scapegoat” does not mean he’s innocent, simply that he’s fulfilling the role of being punished in order for the social order to continue unchanged.
Human beings are fundamentally imitative creatures. We copy each other’s desires and are in perpetual conflict with one another over the objects of our desire. In early human communities, this conflict created a permanent threat of violence and forced our ancestors to find a way to unify themselves. They chose a victim, a scapegoat, an evil one against whom the community could unite.
Again, “scapegoat” does not imply Shawn Simoes is innocent (he’s a jerk, we all agree), but should we, rather than being calmed down by his example, instead be ripping apart the seams of the culture that created him? There are millions who enjoy this degrading meme, and there are millions who are also watching pornography and the brutalization of women which therein informs things. Prostitution, trafficking, rape, the making of women into consumer products, this informs things. Firing Simoes doesn’t address this and can actually serve in the interest of furthering the REAL LIE, the REAL problem, the myth that mysogony is getting less and that women are better off now in our culture simply because they make more money. This affirms our culture, and tells us everything is okay when it’s not (I’m suddenly feeling like the reporter in that scene from Network!).
Shouldn’t we be getting mad instead of celebrating the sacrifice of our scapegoat?
The March for Life is being held right now in Ottawa. I was unable to make it, but it turns out a woman took off her shirt to protest the pro-life position. Again. Here is my open letter to her.
Dear Woman-Who-Pulled-Off-Her-Shirt at the March for Life rally:
I gather you feel strongly about abortion and women’s unrestricted access to it. You probably have personal reasons for that position. Perhaps you had an abortion you felt you needed or simply wanted, or perhaps a friend or a loved one had an abortion. Maybe she felt she had no other option but to kill the child growing inside her, and you stood by her and supported her. Or maybe you simply believe that abortion access is a human rights issue.
While I’ll likely disagree with your reasons for legalized abortion, I do support your right to express yourself and share your perspective.
However, going topless at a pro-life rally really isn’t a great way to make your point. Showing your breasts to the world is not an argument in favour of legalized abortion. It simply isn’t.
Toplessness isn’t shocking anymore, and for a few reasons. First, probably more than half of the March participants are women. They have their own breasts. They aren’t surprised by another pair. Your bare breasts do nothing to persuade them to adopt a pro-choice position.
As for the men, even the religious officials, they know what breasts look like. Really. Honestly. And I highly doubt a single one of them gasped in horror and fled the stage. And I am positive not a single one changed his pro-life perspective.
And we live in a sadly over-sexualized culture. Enough said.
You may have attended last year’s March rally where another woman (or perhaps two?) took off her shirt and stormed the stage. The speaker, a male religious official, didn’t bat an eye or miss a beat.
Topless protesting doesn’t really elicit much attention at all. A few people might tweet what you did, but really, that’s about it. And it doesn’t convey a point or an argument.
And is drawing attention to yourself for an act of nudity persuasive in the first place?
My next point is that there are interesting and engaging pro-choice arguments. The violinist argument? Have you heard of it? It’s not a perfect analogy or argument, but it has given plenty of pro-lifers reason for pause and reflection over the years. I’m all for pro-choicers advancing arguments that cause us to think and more carefully consider our position. Bring on the good arguments, enlightening illustrations and personal stories. Most pro-lifers want to listen to what you have to say. We hope that you’ll listen to our arguments and stories too.
I hope you’re okay, and you weren’t hurt when security pulled you out of the crowd. I hope that you have an opportunity to really share your perspective and even your own story. If you feel like getting in touch with me or anyone else at PWPL, you can reach us here. Andrea responds to email requests quite quickly. We’ll be in touch.
Maybe someday we can even have coffee. But let’s keep our tops on, okay?