Is PM Trudeau Picking A Fight On Abortion? He Might Be In For A Big Surprise
As the Chinese will readily tell you, Canada’s prime minister has no self-esteem issues. Justin Trudeau parades his moral certainty the way Charlton Heston brandished the Ten Commandments in the movies. It was Trudeau’s insistence on playing to his base on social issues rather than engaging the reality of Chinese diplomacy that scuttled the promised trade deals with the regime in Beijing.
Which makes you wonder if Trudeau is spoiling for a fight on abortion in Canada. The announcement that pro-choice and religious groups cannot apply for federal Summer Student grants seems to indicate he’s putting a stake in the ground.
Trudeau actually said “anti-abortion and anti-gay” groups— not religious institutions— would be forbidden to access the money taxpayers entrust to his government. It’s a keen distinction, because it allows him to plead that he’s a positive guy fighting to defend policy while they are “anti” people who want to continue the oppression etc.
If he cloaked the issue in its real terms— a battle by the self-advertised forces of moral progress against traditional religious belief— he’d be opening up a can of whoop ass that would rebound on his Diversity Inc. dream.
While it’s always open season in liberal thought on the Catholic Church, pretending that unlimited abortion or gay marriage are constitutional rights would bring him into direct conflict with the religious people he’s spent so much capital defending and coddling. Those would be Muslim immigrants (or any conservative religious groups) he’s been bulk loading into Canada the last few years.
While Trudeau wants you to think these groups are hunky-dory with Canada’s views on homosexuality and abortion, the reality is the opposite. Polling of these groups in Canada is scarce, but you can find polls that show more than half of British Muslims think homosexuality should be a crime. If Canadians sensed that Trudeau’s immigrants are retrograde on these issues, they might punish him for his support on immigration.
So, calling this side-door gambit to normalize abortion and gay marriage a fight against bigotry lets him keep the progressives on board without unnecessarily aggravating his pet project of Diversity Inc.
But make no mistake, sated by imposing these standards on the sheeple of the Liberal party, Trudeau is now looking to extend his particular world view to the population at large. In pretending abortion is a "human right" and "Canadian value" all on his own, Trudeau's on shaky ground.
While Canadians who get their news from the usual sources might believe otherwise, Canada's Supreme Court in 1988 struck down the existing law regulating abortion by ruling it was unconstitutional. It did not say that women had a Charter right to an abortion. It invited Parliament to legislate in the matter. Parliament has refused to do so since that date.
Abortion is decriminalized but not legal. Therefore, pro-life people are no more in the wrong legally than pro-abortionists— a fact Trudeau wants to obscure. The status quo is a virgin copybook, unblotted and absent of writing since politicians moved on from the subject decades ago. The media acknowledges the issue only to suggest that unlimited abortion is the de facto law of the land.
Imagine a subject this serious having been ignored by elected officials for so long. And never discussed in the media, except to get the facts jumbled. Why? Abortion is a toxic subject no politician in Canada has dared clarify the law, never suggested the possibility of discussing ways in which the issue might be applied.
Even Stephen Harper, noted social conservative, never went near the abortion file in his administration. The prospect of well-organized new-age feminism unleashing itself on social media was not worth the aggravation.
But here is Prime Minister Happy Socks suddenly barging in to use abortion as a cudgel against pesky religious groups who refuse to get on board his virtue parade. In his Rideau reality he’s moving the issue along to its natural end and seems spoiling for a showdown.
But medical innovation has shifted the issue since Canada’s pols ran like Good Sir Robin away from the fight. In today’s world, 50 to 70 percent of babies born at 24 to 25 weeks, and more than 90 percent born at 26 to 27 weeks, survive. Conditions such as Down Syndrome are no longer seen as socially acceptable reasons to terminate a pregnancy. There is a need for children for adoption.
In short, the 1980s feminist all-or-nothing standard on abortion feared by politicians has been trumped by a more nuanced reality. All these factors have lurked in the background as the public debate was stilled. But if Trudeau wishes to use the absolute abortion standard of urban progressives as a yardstick to measure funding viability he may find a public far more willing to accept limits on ending some pregnancies than it was even a decade ago.
He’ll find out his unrestricted standard lies outside the norms of the progressive global community he reveres. Forty-three U.S. states have laws restricting “post-viability abortions”. European nations, too, have imposed limits on when a child is viable outside the womb. Canada stands virtually alone in its refusal to define life.
The question then would be, does Conservative Andrew Scheer, advertised social conservative, have the stones to call him on this?
Bruce Dowbiggin @dowbboy.is the host of the podcast The Full Count with Bruce Dowbiggin on anticanetwork.com. He’s also a regular contributor three-times-a-week to Sirius XM Canada Talks Ch. 167. A two-time winner of the Gemini Award as Canada's top television sports broadcaster, he is also the best-selling author of seven books. His website is Not The Public Broadcaster (http://www.notthepublicbroadcaster.com)