Please allow me to share a thought with your readers re: the bubble zones for pro-life picketers in Toronto. The powers-that-be deem it illegal to witness for Jesus in front of abortuaries in Toronto, where horrendous crimes against the unborn are perpetrated daily. At the same time, the gays and lesbians are not only allowed to parade and make all kinds of lewd gestures, even in front of innocent children, in the main streets of downtown, but are applauded by these same authorities. Mulling over this grave injustice, I was reminded of that sobering verse in St. Paul's letter to the Hebrews: "It is a terrifying thing to fall into the hands of the living God" (Heb. 10:31).
I commend writer Deborah James-Josipovic (Letters, June, 1999) for her honesty in describing the unfriendliness she and her husband encountered at the pro-life luncheon preceding the March for Life in Ottawa.
I was once in a similar situation. Fortunately, I have also been in more pro-life gatherings where the participants have been welcoming and inclusive. My local pro-life group has members from at least six different religious denominations, so we know not to assume a supporter's background. However, other groups may be made-up of only one religion so they must consciously remember that the movement is not limited to any one religion nor to "religious" people.
Luckily, Deborah and her husband were not totally discouraged, and hopefully they will continue to actively support pro life. This honest sharing of their experience should remind all of us that no matter how valid our reasoning, if our attitude is negative or demeaning we will lose the argument. In this case we almost lost fellow pro-lifers - a great loss indeed!
Re: Deborah James-Josipovic's letter (June, 1999).
I would like to say how sorry I am that Deborah did not feel warmly welcomed at the March for Life in Ottawa.
She is right to draw this problem to the attention of Interim readers. The rudeness and coldness of the Catholic pro-lifers at Deborah's luncheon table were not a trivial misfortune. Instead they were a warning signal to all of us that we must strive for unity within the pro-life movement, and this unity will be strengthened by consistent efforts at politeness among ourselves, at all times and in all circumstances.
I am obviously not referring to a superficial kind of politeness, but rather to the courtesy, consideration, and kindness that flow from a life in Christ.
Deborah, in case my letter gets printed and you happen to read it, please let me say how much I sympathize with your feelings of disappointment. You are right to complain, because you were right to expect a great warm welcome at the March for Life, especially, as you say, since you are a member of the younger group who are our hope for the future.
Please try not to be discouraged. The work is so important, and we need you. It is to be hoped that your next experience with a Catholic pro-life person will be much more positive than the one you had in Ottawa.
M vs. H
The recent Supreme Court redefinition of "spouse" in order to favour homosexuals is but the latest example of judicial activism run amok in this country. Even more disturbing, though, is the failure of Ontario Premier Mike Harris to stand up to the court by invoking the constitution's notwithstanding clause.
If Harris, who claims to stand for common sense, will not defend marriage and family, who will? At the same time, it is obvious that more than the notwithstanding clause is needed to defend marriage and family against ever-more-vocal special-interest groups. What is clearly needed now is an amendment to the constitution itself. The constitution should clearly define marriage as the legal union of a man and a woman, and the family unit as being composed of a married man and woman and their children.
On the face of it, such a solution may sound radical. But if left-liberal shibboleths such as affirmative action and multiculturalism are protected in the current constitution, then there is no reason why marriage and family should not get at least the same protection. The challenge now is finding politicians with enough courage and conviction to make this needed change a reality. The survival of our civilization depends on the willingness of our lawmakers to, in Gary Walsh's words, "let marriage be marriage."
On page two of the May Interim, we see a number of Progressive Conservative Ontario MPPs mentioned as noted pro-lifers.
We would have hoped to see Mr. Jack Carroll, PC MPP for Chatham-Kent, included in that group. He is noted in this area as a pro-life supporter, he is present whenever possible at pro-life functions, and he is always with us at Life Chain on the first Sunday of October, proclaiming the sanctity of life.
Was this an oversight?
Wm & Joanne Veldboom
Editor: Indeed it was an oversight, and a very regrettable one at that. Mr. Carroll was certainly one of the finest pro-lifers at Queen's Park during the last government. The article was not intended as a comprehensive list of those MPPs deserving of re-election; however, we realize that its format lent itself to that impression.
Thank you for the excellent coverage of the March for Life on Parliament Hill in the May issue, and for all that The Interim stands for. We are not going to hear much of it from any other source!
I was proud to see a picture of my bishop and some of his comments when he spoke, but unfortunately, he was mislabelled as a bishop of the Anglican Church of Canada. Robert Mercer, CR, is the ordinary of the Anglican Catholic Church of Canada, and like the rest of us, pro-life.
God bless you, and keep up the good work.
Fr. Peter Wilkinson,
Hilary Clinton's drive to supplant Christ as personal "saviour" to the world's women has her intruding on alien soil and into alien cultures - a risky thing. Her defiant style and words echo the anti-life, anti-man, and anti-family invective of her mentors, Betty Freidan and Gloria Steinem.
Note her words at the United Nations' Cairo+5 PrepCom last February in The Hague: "Governments have no place in personal decisions women make as to whether or not to bring a child into the world, a decision that should be made freely, without government coercion. All women, rich or poor, in countries that ban abortion or not, should have access to contraceptives and abortion."
This is forked-tongue talk, as Mrs. Clinton is on record for more, not less, government. She eagerly backs linkages between the International Planned Parenthood Federation, the World Bank, the International Monetary Fund, and pro-abortion billionaires such as Ted Turner, Warren Buffet, and Bill Gates, who withhold vital money, medicine, and food from poor nations, and, by government coercion, force poor women to use toxic chemicals and invasive contraceptives, and to undergo sterilizations and abortions. This imperialist cabal has done its dirty work in developing nations around the world.
Now if governments are to "butt out" of bedrooms - a schizoid view held by another socialist, Pierre Trudeau, exactly 30 years ago - then why in the name of justice, and by government coercion, are we taxpayers burdened with the massive costs of exterminating millions of human lives conceived in those same bedrooms? This is a diabolical contradiction that cries out for redress.
Aileen M. Sivell