A Case for Pro-Choice

Communiy Contributors Olivia Matthews and Kanwar Brar respond to “A case against abortion” from the Oct. 8 issue of The Cord

In last week’s issue “A case against abortion,” by Spencer Gibara, sparked many emotions throughout the Laurier community. Gibara was advocating for his personal stance on abortion and his idea that the pro-life stance is the “right one.” As Canadians living in a healthy, functioning democracy, we are entitled to our opinions and freedom of speech, and intellectual debates are encouraged. We, as a team of both man and woman, are pro-choice. We would like to point out where evidence was lacking in the last article and why the ignorance surrounding abortion never pushes the conversation forward.

First of all, in Tremblay v. Daigle (1989), the Supreme Court found that a fetus (which is living inside a woman) has no legal status in Canada as a person, under both Canadian common law and Quebec civil law. Furthermore, it was stated that rape-related pregnancies “only make up less than 1% of cases and is merely a ploy to make the pro-life side look more extreme.” We think a source from Canada explaining this data is necessary. In the United States, the rape-related pregnancy rate is 5% for women within the reproductive ages of 12-45, with an estimated 32,101 pregnancies resulting from rape each year. Moreover, how harmful is it to take away that right of any woman even if they are a small percentage? One must question the intentions of individuals who believe to be moral the forcing of women to carry unwanted pregnancies.

Additionally, section seven of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedom was used as an example of how abortion of an unborn child is in violation of “rights to life, liberty and security of the person.” Are we not violating a woman’s right to section seven by preventing them from having an abortion?

In R v. Morgantaler (1988), SCC ruled the abortion provision in the Criminal Code of Canada was unconstitutional: “No one should have the right to judge the potential quality of someone’s life.” As Canadians – and as Laurier students – we are consistently taught tolerance and acceptance. We are given an education to open our minds in order to be able to see both sides of a story. Regardless, do not think that blind words against abortion do no harm; they do. This discourteous article may have been gravely upsetting simply due to the fact that we will never be able to feel how this issue affects the reader.

Men are not left out of any conversation in politics. The choice of abortion is not a man’s to make not because women want to silence his voice, but because he will never and has never had to experience the arduous task of pregnancy, and the thought of abortion. It is important to understand what background you come from concerning any contentious issue. Your opinion is simply not as valid without enduring the experience, especially if you are not an expert within the field.

As stated, choices are made leading up to conception. Luckily enough, we live in a democracy that allows citizens to deal with the outcomes of those choices.

Everyone is welcome to their freedom of expression, now you must allow women to have a freedom of choice. As humans, we are entitled to our opinions, but we would like to think that every person, regardless of their gender, is also entitled to their bodies.

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