By Rebecca Richmond, NCLN Executive Director
Toronto has grown on me, I’ll concede, but this small town girl still dislikes the big crowds, achingly slow streetcars, and noisy post-game Euro Cup celebrations. Yet, I’ve never worried much about rates of crime and violence in Canada’s biggest city. I usually feel safe; reports of violence seemed to happen far from my part of town – until recently. It started with the gunman opening fire in the Eaton Centre food court. Following close on its heels was the College Street shooting, just across the street from where I frequently get gelato. All of a sudden, violence was too close to home.
A shooting anywhere is horrific. The loss of life anywhere is tragic. Yet, unless we’re connected to the people or place, it can be easy to disregard or ignore what is happening. It always has been. Throughout history, human society has been all too happy to focus on our lives and our problems and ignore the victims of great injustices. From slavery to the Holocaust to domestic abuse, people have looked the other way, allowing evil to destroy innocent lives. In Canada today, a shooting will be front page news, while the slaughter of 100,000 preborn children annually will be called a “woman’s right” and is paid for with our tax dollars.
This slaughter will continue as long as our fellow Canadians continue to ignore and avoid the issue.
So we can’t let them avoid it. And we can’t let them forget the victims.
On campuses and on street corners, the pro-life message must be proclaimed. In classrooms and in offices, abortion must be discussed and debated. In Parliament and in the courts, justice for all human beings must be upheld, regardless of age, development, environment or degree of dependency.
The New Abortion Caravan showed Canadians the truth about abortion and what it does to the most vulnerable and innocent in our society. The staff of the Canadian Centre for Bio-Ethical Reform, along with student interns and volunteers, were on sidewalks with Choice Chain, in communities with presentations, on streets with trucks, and in neighbourhoods with postcards throughout the month long tour. They engaged the culture.
I don’t think any pro-lifer would disagree with the need to saturate our culture with the truth about abortion. But with the Caravan now on its way home, we must look to our own lives and activities, whether on campus or in our community: how often do we stand up and speak out? What sacrifices do we make regularly? It is essential that we, too, saturate Canada with the pro-life message so that no one can ignore abortion or pretend that ‘choice’ doesn’t kill.
What will it take to make us realize how close the violence really is to our own lives? Abortion does impact all of us and this violence is occurring in our very own communities. It is time for Canadians of all ages and all walks of life to turn pro-life convictions into pro-life actions. It is time to end abortion.