Posts Tagged 'bill c-510'

Another bill bites the dust

Steve walks warily in to vote on the latest anti-choice bill

Ain’t no sound but the sound of him telling his flunkies to vote to kill

The foetishists are ready, they’re ready for this, they’re hangin’ on the edge of their seats

Out of Lifesite the shrieking rips, to the sound of the tweets

Another bill bites the dust

Another bill bites the dust

And another bill’s gone and another bill’s gone, another bill bites the dust

Hey!  We’ll kill the next one too!  Another bill bites the dust!

Ooooohhhhhhh yeah!

DJ reports that yet another backdoor anti-abortion bill from the infamous Pro-Life Caucus is no longer pining for the fjords but has passed on, is no more, has ceased to be, expired and shuffled off its mortal coil.  It is an EX-bill.  The doomed Bill C-510 was voted down today by 178-97, the NO vote being a healthy majority that included — shriek — Stephen Harper.

C-510 is just the latest entry in the never-ending competition among anti-choice MPs to see who can actually get an anti-abortion measure passed.  This redundant and patently phony “anti-coerced abortion” bill is clearly useless — it doesn’t stop violence against women and even the bill’s sponsor, MP Rod Bruinooge, openly admits that it would be virtually unenforceable. Clearly the legislation serves no purpose other than to chip away at abortion rights by putting abortion providers at legal risk.

Here’s what the Canadian Civil Liberties Association had to say about it:

However, the new prohibitions that Bill C-510 attempts to create are not helpful in addressing the question of violence against women.

A young pregnant woman has the right to choose whether to carry a pregnancy to term or to terminate it. Whichever option she chooses, she should not be subjected to harassment, intimidation, threats or the removal of financial support. The Criminal Code already prohibits all of these activities. Thus there is no need for Bill C-510. In any event, this bill only addresses the “coercion” of abortion.

Furthermore, by only creating prohibitions around abortion, the Bill effectively implies that this is not a valid or legitimate choice.

In addition, Bill C-510 is so broad in its language, that it might have the potential to criminalize the activities of Planned Parenthood and other social and healthcare workers, who provide important information and medical treatment – including abortion – to those who choose it.

In light of the above, CCLA calls for the withdrawal and the defeat of Bill C-510.

Anti-choicers have long since come to grips with the reality that upfront anti-abortion legislation isn’t in the cards under any government in Canada and that only an incremental approach stands a chance.  But so far success has eluded even the cheap, sleazy “death by a thousand cuts” strategy, and there’s no reason to think the winds of such change are anything but the anti-abortion movement’s own mental flatulence.  Not that the sneaky fuckers will ever stop trying.

So until the next time…

So much for that, Part II

Wherein Canada’s Imminent Culture of Fetus Fetishizing©™ predictably takes another one in the nads with a frozen boot:

Prime Minister Stephen Harper will vote against a private member’s bill promoted by one of his own MPs that would add new Criminal Code penalties for those who coerce women to have an abortion.

A senior government official also says that while the prime minister will not “whip” or demand Conservative MPs vote as he votes, it will be “very strongly recommended” that Conservatives vote to defeat the bill.

OOF!

Meanwhile, Mr. Harper’s communications director, Dimitri Soudas, says that recommendation is consistent with Harper’s position since 2002 on any bill dealing with abortion: He and his government will neither introduce nor support any such legislation.

It doesn’t look like Harpie’s too interested in continuing his inexorable stumble down the path he witlessly careened onto with his Maternal Health Initiative.  If Harper thought he’d finally shaken off all the “hidden agenda” paranoia that’s dogged him for so long, in the last few months it’s come back with a vengeance.  If a dimwitted and transparent “coerced abortion” bill were to start slithering its way towards passage, the abortion-related volume that’s already been turned up would blow the woofers right out of his election campaign.

I guess he did the math and figured out that solidifying the socon vote isn’t worth alienating the vast moderate middle who really don’t care to see this issue re-opened.

UPDATE: Noteworthy comment from further down in the NatPo article, from Harper’s Communications Director:

“[Harper] has never had more than one position on this issue. The debate is over. It’s done,” said Soudas.

Not that I trust Harpie for a second, but it’s nice to see a high-ranking CPC spokesman go On The Record with what most of us know already: “The debate is over.  It’s done.“.

The “not-about-abortion” abortion bill

Judging by the enthusiasm it was met with last week from the MSM, MP Rod Bruinooge’s private member’s bill against “coerced abortion” is almost certainly dead in the water.  Recall the Unborn Victims bill which was initially greeted with optimism by many until it became apparent that it was a backdoor attack on abortion rights.  It’s a bad sign when the media starts mocking a bill right out of the gate:

Let me make sure I have this right; Conservative MP Rod Bruinooge is chair of the House pro-life caucus. Despite this fact, he really, really doesn’t want to reopen the abortion debate in Canada. Please believe him – he doesn’t want to discuss abortion in any way. Not sure what they discuss at their pro-life caucus meetings but no matter.

Bruinooge himself almost certainly knows the bill is unpassable — he no sooner tabled it than he admitted it would present an enforcement challenge:

Mr. Bruinooge, who leads Parliament’s “pro-life caucus,” agreed that so called “he said she said” scenarios would be difficult to deal with but not impossible.

Just what the doctor ordered:  another intrusive, redundant, administrative nightmare of a law that would be next to impossible to enforce, terrorize doctors and allow anti-choicers to waste the courts’ time with gibberish law suits.

Clearly it’s little more than an election year dog whistle meant to raise an urgent little hardon in the disgruntled, sex-obsessed socon vote.   Bruinooge might have even had Harper’s secret blessing on this thing — with the caveat that it be so unpassable that it wouldn’t survive its second reading.  But the message about the abortion bill that’s not really about abortion except that it is has been sent.  And received.

UPDATE: From the comments with a thread on this topic at BigCityLib, Buckets nails what could be behind the bizarre theory that “coerced abortion” is such a big problem as to require punitive legislation:

buckets said…

There are several interesting contrasts here. First, it’s interesting that roughly the same people who demand that there be no limits (or almost none) on speech seem to want to regulate private arguments about reproduction.

Also, it is (roughly) the same people too who are willing themselves to resort to coercive speech to dissuade women from having abortions. Indeed, I wonder here whether we don’t have an interesting example of transference — because their own ideology invites them to coerce women out of abortions, they imagine that their opposites must be true.

So much for that

Other than the Usual Suspects, it looks like Rod Bruinooge’s “coerced abortion” bill isn’t getting much traction.  The prevailing opinion seems to be that this is at best weird and unnecessary, and a pretty transparent attempt to curtail abortion rights.  Surprisingly, people seem to have caught the play pretty quickly:

While abortion is something Bruinooge has no interest in discussing, he does think there is a big problem in Canada of women being coerced into having abortions against their will.

This of course has nothing to do with abortion per se but rather women being threatened to have abortions against their will something we can all agree is wrong. It is equally wrong for women to have their tonsils out against their will but that private members bill will have to wait for another day.

Heh. And it is equally wrong for women to be forced to bear children against their will, but I don’t see any private members’ bills about that being tabled anytime soon either.

So to summarize, the chair of the pro-life caucus doesn’t want to talk about abortion but does think there’s a menace of women being coerced into having abortions against their will. This is both a questionable assertion (that there are many women being coerced into having abortions – I’m not saying it isn’t an issue, it just strikes me as one of those solutions seeking a problem) and one that is almost certainly already covered under the criminal code.

Exactly.  As I pointed out a few days ago, coercion, bullying, intimidation and threats — for any reason — are already against the law.   There’s no  legitimate rationale for amending the existing law to address so rare a circumstance as “coerced abortion”, especially within the hazy parameters defined by Bill C-510 (“Withdrawal of financial resources or a place to live”?  Just imagine everyone who could get swept up in that little scenario.).

As much as Bruinooge and his fellow travellers might get off on the fantasy that “coerced” abortion is such a rampant occurance as to require its own specific legislation, reality just doesn’t bear it out.  And that’s something I’m pretty sure Bruinooge and everyone else who supports this bill knows full well.

But, we will keep our eye on it.

Bruinooge’s coerced abortion bill

When I read about the latest bit of proposed legislative flatulence blatted out by anti-abortion MP Rod Bruinooge, my initial feeling was that it had to be an election year dog whistle to the base.  A bill banning “coerced” abortion is about as likely to pass as a bill banning coerced pregnancy (even though the latter probably occurs with greater frequency).  But regardless of how transparent the bill’s real purpose might be and how imminently unlikely it is to pass, the Glurge Index suggests that Bruinooge is serious about trying to make it happen:

If this scenario looks familiar, there’s good reason.

The terrible story of a young woman’s murder, re-purposed to sell a bill meant to curtail womens’ rights, will be a pretty familiar theme to anyone who’s followed anti-choice activism and subterfuge in our parliament over the last few years.   Exhibit A:  the doomed Bill C-484, the “Unborn Victims of Crime/Kicking Abortion’s Ass” bill, and the extended battle that raged over it two years ago.  Ultimately the bill was aborted by an election call, but wow: thanks to the Glurge Factor, that was one Late Term abortion.

This new bill is even worse, a potential nightmare of slippery slopes — one person’s “friendly advice” might be another’s “coercion”.   This CTV-Winnipeg poll seems to indicate that about half of Canadians get that already…

…so hopefully this one will be put to sleep a little more expeditiously than C-484 was.

UPDATE: It seems that truth is, well, truthier than the fetus fetishists’ melodramatic fiction.  Fern Hill explains.


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