Mr. Harper is between a rock and a hard place.
On the one hand, he has stated many times that he does not support re-opening the abortion debate.
On the other, there are many disturbing signs regarding pro-life advocacy, and freedom of speech issues surrounding abortion.
First, University students are being threatened with expulsion from the University of Calgary for displaying pictures that show what abortion is.
This is not an isolated incident. Similar attacks on freedom of speech are occurring across the nation, including McGill, the University of Ottawa, University of Victoria, York University and others.
In fact, these occurrences are so disturbing, that even the British Columbia Civil Liberties Association, a self proclaimed pro-choice organization, is defending the University of Victoria and their right to pro-life advocacy.
BCCLA President Robert Holmes stated in a press release in February 2010:
"Public money should not be used to suppress free speech. A university and student society that target and suppress one set of views on a matter of public debate while smugly asking for more public funds and for the continuation of a law forcing all students to fund the student society commit an affront to democracy."
Second, pro-life caucus chair, MP Rod Bruinooge, introduced a private member's bill last week, called Bill C-510 or "Roxanne's Law,". This bill seeks to protect women from coercive abortions. The Prime Minister's office has stated that the government will not support the bill.
Third, the Abortion Rights Coalition of Canada have come out strongly opposing Bill C-510 to the point of actually suggesting the criminalization of pro-life activities. Coordinator Joyce Arthur stated:
"The entire anti-choice movement has been trying to force women into pregnancy and motherhood for decades, by working to outlaw or restrict abortion. Perhaps we need to protect women from this coercion by criminalizing anti-choice activism!"
Fourth, I learned through Access to Freedom Information this year, that Arthur's other extreme pro-abortion group, the Pro-Choice Action Network, received a $27,400 grant to write an extremely vitriolic report, discrediting and condemning Crisis Pregnancy Centres in BC.
The report attacks these CPCs by using innuendo, anonymous sources and pro-abortion biased research. I also learned that Crisis Pregnancy Centres have never received government funding.
Why would our government fund extreme pro-choice propaganda but not fund groups that help women keep their child or put it up for adoption?
Finally, and this is old news but a crucial fact nonetheless: since the 1988 Morgentaler decision we have had no protection whatsoever for the unborn; a woman in Canada can have an abortion legally up until the moment of birth, for any reason, or for no reason at all.
What these events tell us, is that without debate, we are in fact promoting abortion.
Yet polls consistently show that a majority of Canadians want at least some protection for the unborn. As recently as March 2010, a survey done for the Manning Centre for Building Democracy by Harris Decima showed that 60% of those surveyed strongly agreed that abortion is morally wrong.
Even the judges in the Morgentaler decision agreed that protection of the fetus was a valid objective and said it was up to Parliament to do this. Parliament never has.
It shouldn't matter where one stands in the debate, whether pro-choice or pro-life. In a democratic country, surely we can all agree that debate and freedom of speech are the cornerstones of our shared values. No subject should ever be taboo.
Canada has no abortion laws to protect the unborn; abortion advocates want to criminalize pro-life activities; the Universities want to shut down all pro-life debate and free speech on campuses; tax dollars pay for pro-abortion evangelism.
Mr. Harper is in a unique position as our duly elected Prime Minister and holds enormous power and authority in this country. He may not fully realize the influence he has had on the abortion debate but these signs are very troubling.
I am not calling for Mr. Harper to support or oppose abortion. I am asking him to tell the country that he supports debate on all topics including abortion.