Many people are looking for some encouragement after the election last night of Justin Trudeau as Prime Minister of Canada. But for those who care about the moral fabric of our country, there’s not much to be had. In all likelihood, the next four years are going to bring many setbacks to the pro-life and pro-family movement in Canada, and hopefully the huge numbers of Canadians who didn’t show up to the polls, and even larger number of Canadians who have checked out of the culture wars, will realize what happens when we decline to fight for the country we believe in. In short: that country gets remade by those with radically different views. Here are just four things we can expect from Trudeau’s tenure:
Some headlines are exceptional for what they do not say. For example, the National Post’s headline on Sunday: “End-of-life debate turns to newborns: ‘Postnatal abortion’ morally acceptable in some cases, ethicist says.”
Writing about my home land is something I have generally refrained from since moving to Canada several years ago. Despite the fact that I am deeply concerned about the Netherlands’ moral decline, there’s something irritating about people criticizing their country of origin from across the ocean after they immigrate. But sometimes an event hits home in a way that is worthy of being written about—such as the funeral of a child. The loss of a little one cannot be fathomed by those who haven’t experienced it, yet we can all feel sympathy and sadness. However, when I heard about my friend’s co-worker in the Netherlands who had to bury her child, I felt angry most of all. Why, you ask? Because the child didn’t die a natural death—he was aborted.
I am surrounded by people who should never have made it. My Aunt Tinie is one such. Born in the early fifties to a family fresh off the boat from the Netherlands, she arrived into the world 2 months early, weighing just 3.5 pounds. Her chance of survival? Next to nothing, according to the doctors. Yet she fought like a trooper and four weeks later, her parents took the tiny baby home to the chicken coop they lived in at the time. The baby who was never supposed to make it is now a hostess-extraordinaire and a beloved grandmother to 17.
“Now I know the full power of evil. It makes ugliness seem beautiful and goodness seem ugly and weak.” So writes author August Strindberg in his aptly named novel The Dance of Death.
I cannot think of a more accurate description of the controversy that erupted this week over an editorial published in the disingenuously titled publication The Journal of Medical Ethics. The editorial was entitled “After-birth abortion: why should the baby live?” This piece essentially advocated for the legalized euthanasia of any or all newborns due to the purported fact that “both fetuses and newborns do not have the same moral status as actual persons [and] the fact that both are potential persons is morally irrelevant.”
Many pro-life leaders have often commented with frustration on the disparity between the passion of those who work within the movement, and the apathy of the population at large that the movement struggles to reach. In order to defeat the Culture of Death, the pro-life movement must activate the large swathes of the public who assert that they are pro-life—but who do not feel the urge to speak out, take action, or otherwise assist the pro-life movement.
There is a simple reason for this, and a very erroneous one: most people do not feel that the Culture of Death will have any impact on them. “I am against abortion and would never have one,” they rationalize, “And that’s clearly enough. Abortion and the Culture of Death will never personally affect me, and therefore I have no compelling reason to fight it.”