National Post Barbara Kay: Abortion should be about medical ethics, not Liberal politics

National Post - Tuesday June 4th, 2019

Justin Trudeau, Canada's prime minister, right, and U.S. Vice President Mike Pence leave following a news conference in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada on Thursday, May 30, 2019.

U.S. vice-president Mike Pence made a trade-mission call on Canada in late May, fully inclined to emphasize the ties binding our countries. Justin Trudeau repaid his courtesy with criticism of new, restrictive state abortion laws, which are irrelevant both to U.S.-Canada trade and Pence’s federal status. Trudeau had much to lose if President Trump took this insult personally. Why did he do it? Likely, as columnist John Ivison opines, because with his poll numbers falling alarmingly, “Trudeau is desperate and nothing much else is working.”

Trudeau’s obsession with abortion puzzles many Canadians. It’s as if he never discusses the subject with anyone other than a cadre of radical feminists for whom belief in women’s right to abortion whenever and for whatever reason is the litmus test for any claim whatsoever to human decency. It’s as if he doesn’t know it has been almost 30 years since the Supreme Court decision in R. vs. Morgentaler directed Parliament to enact legislation that protected “fetal rights at some point.”

Is he even aware that abortion regulation is the norm amongst all other democracies? France protects unborn children after 12 weeks’ gestation, with exceptions for mothers’ life endangerment and severe, incurable disease in the fetus. Spain bans abortion after 12 weeks, with fetal impairment exception up to 22 weeks. Germany has a 12-week window, provided the woman receives counselling three days before the procedure. Likewise in many other European and Scandinavian countries. These nations are not ultra-conservative redoubts. They are amongst the most politically liberal countries in the world. Canada is the outlier.

According to the organization, We Need a Law, (WNAL), whose mission is to “mobilize Canadians and persuade our political leaders to pass laws that protect children before birth,” there are over 104,000 abortions performed annually in Canada. Of those, 15 per cent are performed after the first trimester. WNAL reports most Canadians are fine with first-trimester abortion, but only 40 per cent of us support second-trimester abortions, while 75 per cent of Canadians think abortion should be illegal in the third trimester. Of abortions for which the gestational age is known, WNAL estimates some 2,500 post-20 weeks abortions are performed annually. (The number is likely higher, but clinics, not hospitals, perform 75 per cent of abortions, and with no abortion law, they are not obligated to share data around them.)

Are those of us who want to see and discuss this data — many of us pro-choice in principle; I’m homing in on the details here — unfit to dine with Justin Trudeau? We look past ideology to recognize abortion is not a simple matter. Apart from the ethics of third-term abortion — arguably a form of infanticide — we get especially queasy at healthy potential girl babies being extinguished because they are girls, a phenomenon creating a demographic crisis worldwide, and a known pattern in certain cultural enclaves here. We’re offended as citizens that our prime minister actively encourages a chill on public discussion of this topic by branding us as misogynistic deplorables eager to bring back up hangers in back alleys.

Sex selection abortion is the practice of eugenics. The U.S. also has an abortion-related eugenics problem.

Progressives beat their drums loudly for racialized black Americans, but the history of abortion in the U.S. is also the history of the eugenics movement (we had our own here), with poor black Americans as the prime target for collective population reduction. In comments accompanying the Supreme Court’s recent refusal to take up the issue of Indiana’s new ban on abortion, Justice Clarence Thomas included some informative and disturbing remarks about the appalling linkage of abortion and racist eugenics in America. I encourage you to read it.

American eugenicists considered the black population a reasonable target for eugenics. Thanks to Margaret Sanger’s “Negro Project,” and Planned Parenthood’s vigorous encouragement, the reported nationwide abortion rate among black women is nearly 3.5 times that of white women. In some New York areas, black babies are up to eight times more likely to be aborted than white children. Thomas says the Court should not be wading into the issue right now, but it must at some point: “Having created the constitutional right to an abortion, this Court is dutybound to address its scope.”

The U.S. needs to address the scope of an abortion law it already has. We need an abortion law, period — one that reflects the ethical concerns of Canadians, not the political concerns of Justin Trudeau. Mike Pence cares about unregulated abortion’s negative impact on women and black Americans. Our prime minister never permits himself to consider such outcomes, and bashes any of his fellow citizens who do. Who is the “extremist” here?