FCP: The only real pro-life optionBy Fr. Alphonse de Valk
This article appeared originally as the editorial in the April issue of Catholic Insight, and is reprinted with permission.
Ontario will soon be heading for that pesky duty of citizenship: the ballot box. It's enough to make one grumpy.
Old party loyalties are dissolving. The Liberals won with a landslide in 1987. Leader David Peterson then called an election for no reason at all after only three years in office, and was promptly turfed out by the electorate. Why not try the NDP?, it was thought in 1990.
Well, Ontario got what it deserved. The NDP brought five years of high spending, raising the provincial debt from $11 billion to $110 billion in the process. Just for good measure, it also hamstrung business with restrictive legislation, struck the middle class with more taxes, abolished Sunday rest and harassed pro-life. So, fed up with the NDP, Ontario voters gave the Tories a landslide victory in 1995. How will we vote this year?
Some people vote out of spite. Teachers' unions, for example, although NDP by ideology, are throwing their weight behind the Liberals, seeking a united left. Non-socialists are abhorrent to them. The day after the 1995 election, they declared war on the Tories, mocked every program that was set before them, refused to co-operate with anything the Harris government proposed, and now present themselves as innocent victims.
In reality, the union leaders seek another chance at maintaining their oligarchy by thrusting money and members into the Liberal campaign. One can only hope the members will make up their own minds.
Meanwhile, these same provincial Liberals are led by one Dalton McGuinty, who says he is a Catholic, even a devout one. Strangely enough, he is quite frank about explaining that Catholic teaching on the public order has no hold on him.
As far as he is concerned, abortion and same-sex "marriage" are one's private business, except he will make sure that no Liberal MPP will oppose it when, as premier, he changes the law. He just won't sign the nomination papers of any party candidate who rejects same-sex "spouses." And that brings me to an important point.
Some people have a laundry list of topics on which they score a party, good or bad. The list has sundry items, including the economy, health, finances, crime, justice, taxes, etc., all jockeying for attention. All are judged of more or less importance according to the voters' preference. But McGuinty illustrates that some issues disqualify a party and all its candidates. To my mind, no Christian - no Catholic - can vote for him.
There is one group of people - and I hope it will be a very large one by election time - who draw a line in the sand saying they will not besmirch their consciences by voting for anti-life parties. Their line is one of moral principle and affects parties and candidates.
Would you vote for someone who speaks nine languages, is a brilliant economist, has a fine family, is a TV personality, and is a well-known anti-Semite? I certainly won't. Anti-Semitism disqualifies a candidate from public office.
Abortion, homosexual "rights," and euthanasia, disqualify a party for an even more profound principle than racial hatred. Those parties which have abandoned humanity on abortion have since sunk deeper into the morass of moral relativism. Meanwhile, they use taxpayers' money to facilitate these practices. Take the Tories, who even pay the lease for Henry Morgentaler's Toronto abortuary! Of course, this is all in the name of freedom and tolerance.
To fight this mentality, Ontario needs an alternative party. And such a party exists. Its initials are FCP - that is, the Family Coalition Party of Ontario (there is also one in British Columbia.) It hopes to run candidates in every one of the 103 ridings, but cannot do so without your help. Its program is solid: parental choice in education; no to judicial activism; health care for life, not death. It is a pro-life social justice party which respects the taxpayer and the family. It has been around since 1987.
One more point. On March 5, Pope John Paul II commended the U.S. Bishops' Committee for Pro-Life Activities, mentioning, once again, that "there is a Christian duty to defend and promote human life from conception to natural death." In the letter, he praises the committee's October 1998 statement Living the Gospel of Life: A Challenge to American Catholics. This statement clearly places the pro-life cause as the number one political issue, not just one of many.
In a May 6 press release, FCP leader Giuseppe Gori announced that Michael Spensieri would run under the party's banner in York Centre. Spensieri, 50, an accomplished lawyer and father of four, was formerly the Liberal MPP for the old riding of Yorkview , and held important shadow cabinet positions while Bill Davis was premier.
Other FCP candidates announced at press time: John Clark (Bruce-Grey), Al Smith (Cambridge), Alfred Kiers (Erie-Lincoln), John Gots (Guelph-Wellington), Barra Gots (Haldimand-Horfolk-Brant), Giuseppe Gori (Halton), Linda Freiburger (Huron-Bruce), John-Henry Westen (Hastings-Frontenac-Lennox-Addington), Lou Reitzel (Kitchener-Waterloo), Pat Redmond (Markham), Andre De Decker (Oxford), Rina Morra (Scarborough Centre), Catherine Fox (Scarborough East), Victor Borkovski (Scarborough Southwest), Gord Truscott (Waterloo-Wellington), and Jim Conrad (Willowdale).