Dear Editor: It was refreshing to hear of Frank Coleman's intentions to seek the leadership of the Province. Being aware of his involvement in the faith community and the pro-life movement, we were delighted that someone principled was stepping forward.
However, his latest comments regarding not imposing his pro-life views are a little puzzling.
While respecting diversity of practices and opinions is a noble thing, the primary role of government is to ensure that certain standards are met and reasonable limits are not exceeded. However, there is a gaping void in relation to abortion, caused by Parliament's failure to take the 1988 Supreme Court's invitation to draft a law restricting abortion which said it would be a "perfectly valid legislative objective." Thus, Canada is in the company of the human rights travesties of China and North Korea, the only other nations without any restrictions on abortion.
This void has left our nation at the perils of the abortion industry imposing itself upon its victims. Abortion is often imposed upon women who want to give birth by unsupportive partners and others who bully and violently coerce them to act against their own will. Abortion is imposed upon women by the abortion industry, complete with private-for-profit clinics, that fails to provide information about the risks and alternatives. Abortion is imposed on those not legally old enough to consent to many actions, but can have one without the knowledge of their guardians. Abortion is always imposed upon the most vulnerable, up to nine months in gestation. The abortion mentality is often imposed upon individuals who fear being lambasted by anti-lifers for being a vocal representative of the silent majority.
The pro-life movement stands for human rights, especially the most basic one of life. It seeks to help people make free and informed decisions. These pro-life aims are virtually universally accepted as positive government responsibilities, not negative impositions as some claim.
As Premier, Mr. Coleman has a role to play. A well formed conscience does not allow for one view privately and another publicly. We have only one soul that it with us in both realms. To whom much is given, much is expected.
We hope that Mr. Coleman's conscience will guide him in accepting the responsibility and using the great influence he has been given. Ideally, we would like him to abolish abortion completely in Newfoundland and Labrador as it is in PEI. However, we know this may not be instantaneously achievable as not every politician is principled.
We agree with Saint John Paul II's Evangelium Vite 73 that says "...when it is not possible to overturn or completely abrogate a pro-abortion law, an elected official, whose absolute personal opposition to procured abortion was well known, could licitly support proposals aimed at limiting the harm done by such a law and at lessening its negative consequences at the level of general opinion and public morality." Mr. Coleman can be assured of our continued prayers.
Patrick Hanlon, spokesperson, Pro-Life NL