Articles from September, 1987

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Thalidomide cover-up caused unnecessary suffering

This year marks the 25th anniversary of Canada’s ban on Thalidomide, a tranquilizer used in the late 50s to prevent morning sickness.  The drug was developed in West Germany, and distributed in Canada by Richardson-Merrell Inc. Although promoted as “safe” for pregnant women, in actual fact the drug had been damaging babies in Europe for at least 5 years, and available in Canada for 11 months, before Ottawa ordered it off the market in March 1962. Severely deformed Health officials could ... (Continue reading)

Experimental breathing for preemies

Physiologist Dr. Thomas Shaffer, of the Temple University of Medicine, has developed an experimental breathing technique which may eventually be sued in neonatal units to keep premature newborns alive. The breathing technique, called Liquid Ventilation (LV), relies on fluid (fluorocarbon) instead of air to deliver oxygen to the lungs and remove carbon dioxide.  It has given premature animals a chance to survive by allowing their immature lungs to function under conditions similar to those in the womb. The lungs are attached ... (Continue reading)

Inside the feminist mind

On a hot and muggy July evening, 15 nondescript-looking women gathered at the Trinity-Saint Paul Chapel.  With few expectations a rather unremarkable lot, and it was hard to believe that they represented the driving force behind the Ontario Coalition for Abortion Clinic (OCAC). Paranoiac I’ve been to quite a few of these feminist meetings, so I knew what to expect.  As usual, the first announcement was that the press was not allowed to attend the meeting.  No reason was given ... (Continue reading)

Freedom of association vs. the unions

The Supreme Court of Ontario has recently put an end to a David vs. Goliath battle over the spending of union dues.  In a decision hailed by many as a step forward for freedom in Canada, Mr. Justice John White has ruled that a teacher’s union, the Ontario Public Servant Employees Union (OPSEU), must refund a portion of dues to non-union members who object to those monies being spent on political causes. The David in this case is Merv Lavigne, ... (Continue reading)

Father Markley released from jail

Father Edward Markley, the Benedictine monk who was sentenced to five years in prison after he smashed suction equipment in an abortion facility in Birmingham, Alabama, has been released after serving only a little more than a year of the sentence. Scott Hauser, the director of Birmingham’s 1,000 for Life and Abortion Watch, told The Wanderer that local pro-lifers were “a little surprised, but extremely pleased” with the early release.  Hauser credited Markley’s exemplary behaviour while in prison, and a ... (Continue reading)

Action flashes

Because of the high rate of success of our sidewalk counselors, the Morgentaler abortuary has re-established its escort service for mothers going into the abortuary. *          *          * Campaign Life Coalition, the St. Vincent de Paul Society and the Rosalie Hall maternity home joined forces to save a girl in Calgary from having an abortion.  Campaign Life Coalition in Calgary is following up with assistance. Anne Dobson, a faithful witness for life, who laid a complaint of assault against PC Wolfgang Hartig ... (Continue reading)

Baby saved

On July 7, a couple going into the Morgentaler abortuary were offered assistance by sidewalk counselors, Barbara Brown and Hermina Dykxhorn.  After much discussion the couple left, but there was still some question as to whether or not they would return. On the following morning, one of the follow-up teams visited the couple at their home, and after further counseling the couple decided to keep their baby.  The expectant parents, and the one child they already have, will continue to ... (Continue reading)

Protester padlocks himself to abortuary gate

In the early morning hours of July 17, Gary Knight padlocked himself to the back gate of the Morgentaler clinic, and remained until police came to remove him. Gary was taken to Old City Hall, where he was released on bail conditions that he would not go within 100 meters of 85 Harbord Street.  A date for is trial will be set later. (Continue reading)

Father Ted challenges Toronto area Knights of Columbus

On Sunday July 12, the Toronto Knights of Columbus organized a “Crusade for Life” Mass at St. Michael’s Cathedral.  The main celebrant and homilist was Father Ted Colleton.  The Mass was in response to the call put forth by Supreme Knight Virgil Dechant, who has pledged to use the “resources and manpower” of the Knights to defeat abortion. “We are convinced that the time to act is now,” Dechant declared, “that the witness of a Catholic family organization such as ... (Continue reading)

Arrested while praying

At noon on July 30, in the back lane of Morgentaler’s Toronto abortuary, father Ted Colleton led a group of witnesses for life in the recitation of four decades of the rosary.  At the end of the fourth decade, Father went to the back steps of the abortuary to recite the fifth decade and was charged with trespassing. While Father was kneeling and praying on the steps, Bill Shane (the abortuary guard) came out and told him he was under arrest.  ... (Continue reading)

Vigil supports Packer

On the evening of July 6, Toronto area Pro-life supporters held a vigil in support of P.C. David Packer outside 14 Division police station.  It was the third such event held to support this brave police constable who refused “guard duty” at Morgentaler’s illegal abortuary. The vigil was held on the eve of Packer’s second appearance before the Police Commission, at which a trial date of September 8 was set. About 70 supporters came during the two-hour vigil.  Signs bearing slogans ... (Continue reading)

Petition for officer Packer

Gerarda Savoir of Niagara Falls has organized a petition in support of Constable David Packer to be sent to Police Chief Jack Marks.  It reads: “We, the undersigned, beg leave to petition you as follows: “Whereas Police Constable David Packer has been charged under the Police Act with failing to carry out an order, and faces possible punishment as a result of not guarding the Morgentaler abortuary, we beg you to reverse this decision and drop any and all charges against ... (Continue reading)

Bishops’ letter does not endorse Mitges’ motion!

I have been a Catholic for 74 years and a priest for 47 – an interesting juxtaposition of figures!  If half the things people say about me are true, I must be an “Orthodox” Catholic.  Basically that means that I accept the official teaching of the Catholic Church as proclaimed by the Pope and the bishops.  Obviously there is more to it than that...  Bt let’s put it another way.  If I do not accept the teaching of the ... (Continue reading)

B.C. baby safe in foster care

Baby R, (the British Columbia baby made a ward of the government before birth) now two months old, is in the loving care of foster parents.  A family court custody suit ended July 17, at which time Judge Brian Davis stated that he would reserve his decision until September 3.  The mother has filed an application to have the child returned to her care. “Miss R, sadly is not able to care for herself, never mind a child,” ... (Continue reading)

Exit Thalidomide enter Bendectin

Law suits In 1980, Betty Mekdeci, head of the Association of Birth Defect Children in Orland, Florida, launched a most widely-publicized lawsuit against Merrell Dow over Bendectin.  Her son was born with chest deformities, a shortened right arm and two fingers joined on his left hand, attributed to her use of the drug.  A federal court in Orlando awarded $20,000 to the Mekdeci family who had sued for $10 million. In July of this, a U.S. federal court ordered Merrell ... (Continue reading)

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