International Women’s Day 1983
A gala event within the pro-abortion community each year is International Women’s Day, which is held in early March. On this day, a rally is held, followed by a parade, in which the radical Feminists hold forth on what they demand. This year they marched under three slogans. They were, 1) A Woman’s Right to Work, 2) A Woman’s Right to Choose (Abortion) and 3) A Woman’s Right to Peace. (With the exception of the womb, which is a free fire zone.)
The event this year fell on March 5, and was marked by a rally at Convocation Hall, University of Toronto, followed by a parade. The event was well covered by the media, which gave the Feminists plenty of time to set forth what they were marching for.
What the media failed to mention, however, was a silent pro-life counter-demonstration of twenty people, most them members of the University of Toronto Students for Life group (whose conflicts with pro-abortion forces on campus are documented elsewhere in, Interim.) The counterdemonstration had more participants than any one of the many individual groups who comprised the other side. There were a number of interesting developments during the counterdemonstration.
One was that a number of the rank and file who are involved with the march have serious doubts about what their leaders tell them, particularly on the issue of abortion. This was evident, in view of the large number of participants who came over to engage us in conversation, all the while wearing buttons in support of International Women’s Day and abortion on demand.
One such individual, a psychiatrist, told one of the pro-lifers that she frequently saw in her practice, girls and women who were suffering adverse effects on an emotional and psychological level as a result of their abortions. She (the psychiatrist) felt that abortion was a necessary evil until better methods of birth control could be discovered (of course), but at the same time she expressed her support for our being there and wished us well.
I had a couple of conversations with pro-abortion supporters, and the manner in which they spoke has left no doubt in my mind that they have very strong doubts about abortion. Hopefully, we will be able to develop them further.
Reaction, on an overall level, was varied. Some of the Feminists made obscene gestures to the pro-lifers, others shouted their obscenities, and cameras were continually clicking. The pro-lifers stood there silently, occasionally talking among themselves. Their banners read, “University of Toronto Students for Life,” “One Person’s Freedom to Obtain an Abortion, Denies Another Person’s Right to Live.” Another banner, carried by two women read, “We, the Real Women of Canada, Oppose Abortion.” The Canadian flag was also carried, as were placards reading, “Stop Killing Babies,” “Abortion is a Crime Against Humanity.”
We learned from a police officer present, that the marchers were afraid that somehow we were going to disrupt their rally. ( As though twenty people are suddenly going to beat up on 3,000) The on-lookers expressed tremendous support and sympathy towards our counter-demonstration and even offered suggestions as to how it could be made more effective. The pro-lifers were also asked by the police why we weren’t wearing our identifying roses for life.
A word should be said here as to the number of participants on the other side. The media reported between 6,000 and 7,000. This is highly unlikely, as Convocation Hall only seats 1,731 people. Even if you pack more into the aisles, that only allows 2,200 people at the most. As for those who milled about outside, ostensibly due to lack of space inside, there were, as an outside figure, 800 of such. This means at the very most, only 3,000 people took part, and not the 6,000 – 7,000 that pro-abortionists and the media claim.
I wish to close by thanking all of those who took the time to come and participate in the counter-demonstration. Thanks should also go to Theresa Barry of St. Michael’s College who took the time to promote this event there.