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uOttawa Students For Life: After-Birth Abortion Happening in Canada?

This post was written for uOttawa Students For Life by uOttawa Students For Life. It does not necessarily represent the views of NCLN.

No matter where you stand on abortion, surely we should all be horrified that 491 babies were born alive and left to die between 2000 and 2009 in Canada, as confirmed by Statistics Canada. How can this be happening in our country? Could it be that not granting any protection or assigning any value to preborn children at any point before birth leads to more of the same treatment when they are still vulnerable after birth? (Infants and others in the UK are being subjected to slow death by starvation in an end-of-life regime called the Liverpool Care Pathway. Euthanasia by any other name is just as insidious.)

Motion 312 would have examined the scientific evidence on when human life begins. Don’t forget Stephen Woodworth’s talk at the University of Ottawa on Monday Dec. 3rd.

*Update: Use this email tool to let your MP know we’re on a slippery slide towards infanticide.


Read the comments at the uOttawa Students For Life website.

University of Toronto Students for Life: Killing babies the same as abortion: Experts

This post was written for University of Toronto Students for Life by prolifepharmacist. It does not necessarily represent the views of NCLN.

Really? I thought that’s what pro-lifers have been saying for the last little while, but don’t trust us! Trust the experts!

Seriously, though, this article in the British Medical Journal is callous. It really goes to show what kind of mentality arises when there is no respect for life. What stood out for me is that for a medical journal article there is a lot of talk about “personhood”, which is really a philosophical issue instead of a scientific one. And in terms of verbal gymnastics, check out this little somersault on the issue:

we propose to call this practice ‘after-birth abortion’, rather than ‘infanticide’,
to emphasise that the moral status of the individual killed is comparable with that of a fetus (on which ‘abortions’ in the traditional sense are performed) rather than to that of a child.

Disgusting. In order to feel better about the killing of a newborn they use the euphemism of “after-birth abortion” rather than “infanticide”. Not only does it lessen the personhood of the newborn, it sounds nicer too. Win Win! Again, I ask why is there talk of moral status of an individual in a scientific journal? How can you perform experiments in a lab regarding personhood?

Science already has a term to describe a fetus, a newborn and a child: Human life.


Read the comments at the University of Toronto Students for Life website.

University of Toronto Students for LifeUniversity of Toronto Students for Life: Killing babies the same as abortion: Experts

This post was written for University of Toronto Students for LifeUniversity of Toronto Students for Life by juvericci. It does not necessarily represent the views of NCLN.

Really? I thought that’s what pro-lifers have been saying for the last little while, but don’t trust us! Trust the experts!

Seriously, though, this article in the British Medical Journal is callous. It really goes to show what kind of mentality arises when there is no respect for life. What stood out for me is that for a medical journal article there is a lot of talk about “personhood”, which is really a philosophical issue instead of a scientific one. And in terms of verbal gymnastics, check out this little somersault on the issue:

we propose to call this practice ‘after-birth abortion’, rather than ‘infanticide’,
to emphasise that the moral status of the individual killed is comparable with that of a fetus (on which ‘abortions’ in the traditional sense are performed) rather than to that of a child.

Disgusting. In order to feel better about the killing of a newborn they use the euphemism of “after-birth abortion” rather than “infanticide”. Not only does it lessen the personhood of the newborn, it sounds nicer too. Win Win! Again, I ask why is there talk of moral status of an individual in a scientific journal? How can you perform experiments in a lab regarding personhood?

Science already has a term to describe a fetus, a newborn and a child: Human life.

Read the comments at the University of Toronto Students for LifeUniversity of Toronto Students for Life website.

uOttawa Students For Life: Sliding Down the Slippery Slope

This post was written for uOttawa Students For Life by uOttawa Students For Life. It does not necessarily represent the views of NCLN.

by Theresa Stephenson

Last week, it was reported that a woman who killed her newborn baby would receive no jail time.

She kept her pregnancy hidden from her parents and gave birth in their home. She then strangled her son with her underwear and threw his body over the fence into the neighbour’s yard. Clearly, this is murder. Clearly…or is it? In the opinion of an Alberta judge, this merely amounts to a fourth-trimester abortion:

The fact that Canada has no abortion laws reflects that “while many Canadians undoubtedly view abortion as a less than ideal solution to unprotected sex and unwanted pregnancy, they generally understand, accept and sympathize with the onerous demands pregnancy and childbirth exact from mothers, especially mothers without support,” she writes.

The week before that baby was born, the mother could have legally had an abortion in Canada. In the womb, outside the womb – what difference does it make?

A friend paralleled this story with the anecdote of a frog being boiled alive. If you put a frog in boiling water it will immediately jump out. However, if you place it in cold water and slowly increase the temperature, it will not notice the danger and it will be cooked to death.

Canada, I think our moral relativism is killing us.


Read the comments at the uOttawa Students For Life website.

uOttawa Students For Life: “It’s a girl baby, and we can’t keep it.”

This post was written for uOttawa Students For Life by uOttawa Students For Life. It does not necessarily represent the views of NCLN.

by Marissa Poisson

Over the weekend, I read an article that describes the writer’s experience in a Chinese village during and shortly after the birth of a baby girl. I found the whole article very moving and the following passage especially striking:

“Doing [killing] a baby girl is not a big thing around here. You city folk are shocked the first time you see it, right?” the older woman said comfortingly, obviously seeing how shocked I was.

“That’s a living child!” I said in a shaking voice, pointing at the slops pail. I was still so shocked, I didn’t dare to move.

“It’s not a child,” she corrected me.

“What do you mean, it’s not a child? I saw it.” I could scarcely believe that she could tell me such a blatant lie!

“It’s not a child. If it was, we’d be looking after it, wouldn’t we?” she interrupted. “It’s a girl baby, and we can’t keep it.”

“A girl baby isn’t a child, and you can’t keep it?” I repeated uncomprehendingly.

Try substituting the word “preborn” for “girl” in the above, and I think you’ll find it applies quite handily to the West. After all, killing a preborn baby cannot be a big thing around here, given the rate at which it’s done. Those unaccustomed to the practice may instinctively find it revolting, but those who have embraced modern cultural values can assure us that it’s perfectly normal. It may seem self-evident that the preborn are living children, but they must not be since we’re not looking after them.

In some cultures, girl babies don’t count if their families wanted a boy and are routinely disposed of. Here, both boy and girl preborn babies don’t count if they are deemed unwanted and are routinely disposed of. Is that the difference between the developing and developed world? Does killing earlier and without discriminating between the sexes make us any more civilized?


Read the comments at the uOttawa Students For Life website.

University of Toronto Students for Life: Cold-Blooded Intellectuals: Peter Singer

This post was written for University of Toronto Students for Life by Blaise Alleyne. It does not necessarily represent the views of NCLN.

Alternatively: I love Wikipedia.

The Wikipedia article on Peter Singer does an excellent job at encapsulating his position on abortion, infanticide and euthanasia. Peter Singer, if you’re not already familiar with the man, is an Australian philosophy and bioethicist famous for his ruthless utilitarianism. He is one of the few who attacks the first premise of the pro-life argument against abortion, rather than the second.

The pro-life view can be stated as follows:

  1. It is wrong to intentionally kill an innocent human person.
  2. Elective abortion is the intentional killing of an innocent human person.
  3. Therefore, elective abortion is wrong.

Most people question the humanity or the personhood of the pre-born (the second premise). Singer, instead, accepts it, and attacks the first. Singer writes,

[The argument that a fetus is not alive] is a resort to a convenient fiction that turns an evidently living being into one that legally is not alive. Instead of accepting such fictions, we should recognise that the fact that a being is human, and alive, does not in itself tell us whether it is wrong to take that being’s life. (Singer, Rethinking Life and Death, p. 105)

Wikipedia explains,

Singer states that arguments for or against abortion should be based on utilitarian calculation which weighs the preferences of a woman against the preferences of the fetus. In his view a preference is anything sought to be obtained or avoided; all forms of benefit or harm caused to a being correspond directly with the satisfaction or frustration of one or more of its preferences. Since a capacity to experience the sensations of suffering or satisfaction is a prerequisite to having any preferences at all, and a fetus, at least up to around eighteen weeks, says Singer, has no capacity to suffer or feel satisfaction, it is not possible for such a fetus to hold any preferences at all. In a utilitarian calculation, there is nothing to weigh against a woman’s preferences to have an abortion; therefore, abortion is morally permissible.

Similar to his argument for abortion, Singer argues that newborns similarly lack the essential characteristics of personhood—”rationality, autonomy, and self-consciousness”—and therefore “killing a newborn baby is never equivalent to killing a person, that is, a being who wants to go on living.”

His position is extreme, but so essential for understanding so many arguments in favour of abortion. Why do you think abortion supporters hate science so much? Once you reject the “fiction,” as Singer puts it, that the pre-born child is not a human person, your only recourse to defend abortion is to say that it’s okay to kill innocent people anyways… and, Singer, being true to his own beliefs, carries that idea through to its logical conclusion: infanticide. What difference does birth make if it’s okay to kill human beings because they’re in the early stages of development?

Anyways, this isn’t news for anyone whose familiar with pro-life apologetics, but I wanted to (a) highlight the fact that Wikipedia has excellent summaries on complex arguments, and (b) start to point out some of the more intellectual honest, and thus more extreme, positions among supporters of abortion.

Isn’t it telling that intellectually honest defences of abortion always seem to lead to extreme conclusions? It seems there are three options: clinging to a “convenient fiction,” becoming a cold-blooded intellectual, or coming around to the pro-life view.


Read the comments at the University of Toronto Students for Life website.

uOttawa Students For Life: Live Birth Abortion – Infanticide?

This post was written for uOttawa Students For Life by uOttawa Students For Life. It does not necessarily represent the views of NCLN.

by Reita S.

Part of the rhetoric in the abortion debate revolves around the question of the born and pre-born child. In Canadian law, for example, the born child is awarded retroactive legal rights through all nine months of pregnancy. (This means that in the instance of pre-birth assault, a born child and its mother can BOTH sue the offender.) However, a child who dies before birth or is aborted does not have these legal rights. (So if the child did not survive the pre-birth assault, the mother can still sue, but the child, as it was never live-born, cannot.)

While I lament that the Unborn Victims of Crime bill in Canada did not pass, which would have allowed legal process on behalf of a wanted pre-born child killed in an assault, I am at least pleased to see that Canada legally acknowleges that at the moment of birth the child has legal rights and is deserving of protection.

Imagine my anger, then, at the controversy in the United States over “live birth abortion”, also known as “induced labour abortion”. In this process, performed in late-term pregnancies, the doctor gives the woman medication which causes her to go into premature labour and expell the baby, rather than using a D&C or saline procedure.

The horrible part of this is that the child is often not “born dead”. In fact, children born through this procedure can live for hours – and they receive no medical treatment. They are treated as ‘medical waste’ and are wrapped in a blanket and left to die alone. They are issued both birth and death certificates, but never receive any of the medical help a premie baby would receive.

Consider the testimony of nurse Jill Stanek:

“It is not uncommon for one of these live aborted babies to linger for an hour or two or even longer. One of them once lived for almost eight hours. [...] In the event that a baby is aborted alive, he or she receives no medical assessments or care but is only given what my hospital calls “comfort care.” “Comfort care” is defined as keeping the baby warm in a blanket until he or she dies, although even this minimal compassion is not always provided. It is not required that these babies be held during their short lives.”

“One night, a nursing co-worker was taking an aborted Down’s Syndrome baby who was born alive to our Soiled Utility Room because his parents did not want to hold him, and she did not have time to hold him. I could not bear the thought of this suffering child dying alone in a Soiled Utility Room, so I cradled and rocked him for the 45 minutes that he lived. He was 21 to 22 weeks old, weighed about ½ pound, and was about 10 inches long. He was too weak to move very much, expending any energy he had trying to breathe. Toward the end he was so quiet that I couldn’t tell if he was still alive unless I held him up to the light to see if his heart was still beating through his chest wall. After he was pronounced dead, we folded his little arms across his chest, wrapped him in a tiny shroud, and carried him to the hospital morgue where all of our dead patients are taken.”

How is this not infanticide? Since when is being ‘wanted’ the only thing that matters?


Read the comments at the uOttawa Students For Life website.

uOttawa Students For Life: “You just don’t throw children out like that”

This post was written for uOttawa Students For Life by uOttawa Students For Life. It does not necessarily represent the views of NCLN.

by Dante De Luca

Perhaps some of you may recall a story that was in the news recently, the story of a lady in the small village of Villers-au-Tertre, France, who suffocated eight of her newborn children and hid their bodies in her garage in plastic bags, simply because she “didn’t want any more children” and did not want to get doctors involved.

This story has aroused the horror of the local populace, and rightly so. The lady in question’s next door neighbour has called the events “revolting” and “monstrous”. A lady down the street stated that “We’re really in a state of shock”. Another asked, “How could anyone do something like that?”

These sentiments have been echoed by people around the globe. You can see a slice of the online discussion here — notable comments include “I wanted to throw up a little bit” and “This goes beyond the inconceivable”… not to mention those which are too vulgar to quote on our blog.

What has me confused is that I thought the general populace approved of this sort of thing. Whatever happened to the right of a mother to choose whether or not to bring up her children?  Whatever happened to the right of a mother to kill her offspring if she doesn’t want them? After all, it’s just a baby; it can’t think or do anything on its own. Right?

Right?

Admittedly, the laws on abortion are more strict in France than they are in Canada. But the fact is, I have yet to hear a reasonable defense of abortion of any sort that does not also allow for infanticide. If you can kill someone immediately before birth, why can’t you kill someone immediately after? And if the death of eight newborn children causes such horror, why does the death of three hundred unborn go unnoticed?

So in the end, I have to agree with Fr Robert Meignotte, the curé of Villers-au-Tertre: “I’m thinking of all the children in the world… you just don’t throw children out like that in a garbage bag. It’s inconceivable.”


Read the comments at the uOttawa Students For Life website.