By Rebecca Richmond, Executive Director
I’m not very familiar with the campus at the University of Toronto, but I had no trouble finding what I was looking for yesterday. I don’t think anyone within a 2 block radius could have missed the ruckus that was the street corner in front of the library at the U of T.
University of Toronto Students for Life were there, peacefully holding signs, handing out pamphlets on the pro-life position, engaging people in dialogue on the issue of abortion.
Pro-choicers were there too. With large banners they tried to block the pro-life signs. They handed out brochures entitled “10 LIES that ANTI CHOICE groups are telling you about abortion.” They called the pro-lifers names. And, with a megaphone, they chanted from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. I’m quite familiar with their chants and am always surprised by the fact that, despite decades and decades of chanting, they still resort to the same old ‘classics’.
“NOT THE CHURCH, NOT THE STATE. WOMEN MUST DECIDE THEIR FATE,” they yelled, making it hard to hear above the din. If they really believed that women should decide their fate, they shouldn’t have a problem with women discussing the issue. Nor should they have a problem with the many female pro-life students making their views on abortion known.
“GET YOUR ROSARIES OFF OUR OVARIES!” they yelled, apparently not noticing that the club is non-religious, that the club members never appealed to religion, and that there wasn’t a rosary in sight.
“HEY HEY MISTA MISTA! GET YOUR LAWS OFF MY SISTA!” they chanted. One pro-life student turned to me and posed an apt question: “What laws are they talking about? Last time I checked, Canada had no abortion laws.”
Sadly most of the pro-choicers refused to talk with the students about abortion. ”I’m not talking to you about this!” was heard over and over again. And when they barged into conversations between pro-lifers and students passing by, the pro-choicers made unfounded allegations (apparently we’re in league with firebombing an abortion clinic?!) and refused to listen to anything the pro-life students had to say.
Fortunately, many other students were willing to talk, and had good discussions with the club members on the issue of abortion. Many weren’t interested in talking or were off to a class, but walked away holding a brochure which outlines and defends the pro-life position on abortion. Countless others had to at least consider the issue, as they walked past.
At the end of the day, it really doesn’t matter how loud the opposition is. Because at the end of the day, you can’t drown out the truth.