Saturday, March 15, 2008

Valerie Goyette is the mother of two little boys and a little girl. named Tandra. (Her daughter was subsequently born premature reported by her to be due to complications caused by the terrible incident stated below) With her little boys one is named Chad and he's a bright bubbly little elementary school dude. The other little boy is named Mason and he is no longer on earth. He died in his mother's womb.

The testimony that Valerie has shared online is that when at a celebration an unwanted guest who she had a difficult history with attended. By Valerie's report the woman became aggressive later on in the evening. She struck her head several times and targetted her stomach with blows. Persons present weren't terribly supportive in terms of getting proper medical help according to Valerie. When she finally got to the hospital it took a bit of time before it was clarified that the baby was part way out of the uterus. She lost 3/4 of the blood in her body and she had to have emergency surgery. Valerie's son lived for 22 minutes. She baptized her little boy and had to tell her three year old of the baby's death.

Valerie is one of the mothers that has experienced the loss of a child. She supports this bill. It is her hope that our country will recognize the loss of her son and will support her in believing that those who commit crimes against pregnant mothers are held accountable - fully accountable. It won't make a difference for the crime she faced but it will effect future women and their families.

The pro-choice movement that is professing to represent the full scope of Canadian women in their thoughts and aggressively fighting against this bill do not speak for Valerie. They do not speak for women who support Valerie. And they do not speak for the millions of Canadians who are grieved by the magnitude of her loss. The pro-choice people who oppose this and who have been so critical of those who have come forward do not represent the hearts and minds of millions of canadians who live more compassionate lives.

Thank you, Valerie, for sharing your story. It is my hope that people will be inspired to support this legislation because of hearing your message.

I hope that thousands of people will feel inspired to support this bill. Call your MP. Write your MP. Print, sign, and send this petition.

Here is a direct link to her story expressed in her own words - - (must be a facebook user to see)

This is posted with her permission, received this morning.

Friday, March 14, 2008

Cunts: A progressive perspective on women who assert themselves

Barbara McKay recently had a column that was, of course, controversial in terms of her portrayal of those who oppose bill c-484 , if you wish to see it for yourself.

A popular blog named canadian cynic was, according to their self-report, one of the persons quoted in the article. In his follow up blog he criticized the reporter for not quoting him directly which is not entirely unfair. What was, of interest, was the way that some of the posters characterized Mrs. McKay for holding a different perspective.

A person who refers to himself as WTF_Cherniak says the following:

Barbara Kay - Fuck you.

You are a good for nothing apologist with a narrow world view. Neo-Con, Zionist, and anti-choice - the idiots trifecta dream.

I’m certain Mrs. Kay, if she came here, would make dikk or dr roy seem like geniuses. While Wanda may never wander here, Mrs Kay may.
If she does, well here’s my message to you: “Fuck you, you self-righteous idiot cunt”.

While it is true that Canadian Cynic is not responsible for the thoughts of persons who leave a comment he has shown in the past a comfort with referring to women who are strong enough to hold an alternative position to his own as "cunts" and he's had male commentors make negative comments about the sexuality of women who disagree with the "progressive" position.

It's amazing to me that calling women cunts is so common within the progressive community.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

A response to a cynic

represents the full link so that any persons reading it have the opportunity to view the comments in their entirety and not my piecemeal.

Yeah, what are you folks all worried about? It's not like this was about abortion or anything.

On the other hand, courtesy of JJ, there's this SUZANNE

If you follow the thread you will see that the canadian cynic links to other sites that talk about the issue of bill c484 as it relates to abortion.

He has a fair point in that there is an inconsistent message on abortion and how it applies to bill c484. While some pro-lifers are saying that it's not about abortion they are in the next breath saying that they hope that it has an impact on abortion laws in the future.

I do not have the legal background to know whether or not the bill will have long-term consequences but I think that pro-choicers have a legitimate reason to be concerned about that. I do, ultimately, hope that abortion will not be legal in Canada but I don't know whether or not this bill can contribute to this process or not. I don't have that kind of a legal background. Certainly, it appears there are competing legal views on that - Mr. Epp has legal evidence to suggest that the prochoicers do not have a valid concern.

I do know that even if I had a guarantee that it would not I would still support the bill. I live a few minutes away from Olivia Talbot's home and I was greatly saddened by her death. I've also had transient opportunities to meet her mother at political events. I've spoken fewer than 3 words to her but her pain is just so obvious.

What I do dislike though is persons presenting Mary Talbot as a person with a hidden agenda. She has said many times that she is pro-choice and does not want this to impact abortion at all. While I understand that prochoice people don't trust the politicians or other advocates for the bill I would like to think that they could understand the grief and pain that motivates Mrs. Talbot. Believe that she is wrong, believe that she is mistaken, and disagree with her respectfully - but acknowledge and realize that her political action stems from pain. By her own report she's had long-held prochoice views.

I'm fascinated that Suzanne (edited to show manners) was allowed to use the phrase "pro-abortion advocates" to refer to pro-choicers, given that most pro-choicers find that former appellation more than a little offensive. One wonders if the Post has a guidebook that explains what is and isn't acceptable terminology. Would someone rebutting Suzie be allowed to refer, not to "pro-lifers," but to "fetus fetishists?" Or would the Post suddenly invent some journalistic standards out of thin air?

It is true that most pro-choicers don't like the term. I am not sure that it's not applicable though when Joyce Arthur herself is quoted by Suzanne as saying that she doesn't know we prefer birth over abortion. That to me is a pro-abortion statement. I wouldn't be offended if someone called me pro-birth!

And as for how Suzanne found her way to a prominent piece in a national paper I would imagine it's because they saw her writing talents and her collected manner of representing herself. And I do not doubt that pro choice persons would be able to call pro-lifers anti-choice or the like in some publications. Suzanne did not use an inflammatory term like pro-death or anything.

I guess most of all I would hope that persons could stop their bickering back and forth between the different groups on abortion and everyone could reflect on Olivia. Her short life came to a horrific end and she lost a child that she was carrying. She and her fiance had hopes and dreams for little Lane. Those dreams ended in gunshots. Her family was left to pick up the pieces and they are motivated by their loss and sadness. They are not people that ever intended to get involved in the abortion debate. They just wanted Olivia and Lane's deaths to be acknowledged and they want the laws to change. That people can't show compassion for that is amazing to me.

All of those people that talk about how they have compassion for this family and then don't even remember Olivia's name or call them "fetus fetishists" or infer that they are not emotionally well because of their grief really stand out for their insensitivity.

If you can't support this law because of your concerns about the impact on abortion then at least do something positive - come up with an alternative piece of legislationt hat would address the concerns without touching the abortion issue from your perspective or just simply donate money to a victim's rights group. Do something compassionate and positive in that young woman's name.

When I scan though the list of contributors to this discussion on cynic's blog I am doubtful that this could ever occur. This is a site that has used the word "cunts" to reference women that they disagree with. A term intended to belittle and silence women with strong voices that are alternatives to their thinking. Some persons that frequent there have, in the past, referred to traditional women building larger families and/or women beginning their families at a young age as "sluts" and "harlots". If that is the mentality that they bring to women, to free thinking women of different philosophy than their own, to childbirth, to pregnancy, to traditional family life etc then they cannot possibly imagine the loss that occured on the doorstep that day when Olivia and her baby died. Some people engaging in this debate are devoid of compassion.

Saturday, March 08, 2008

"My Grandson was Murdered": A call for pro-choice compassion

This letter was published on February 25, 2008 by the Ottawa Citizen

It is a letter written by a grieving mother and grandmother who had to bury her 19 year old daughter, Olivia, and her son Liam who died in the womb.

I was in Ottawa on Feb. 14, what should have been my grandson's second birthday, at a press conference urging MPs to vote for Bill C-484, regarding the unborn victims of violence.

The next day, the Canadian Press reported on what Joyce Arthur of the Abortion Rights Coalition of Canada had to say about this bill and about the intentions of the MP who introduced it. It appalls me that she is still trying to turn my cause into some sort of abortion issue. Positive or negative, I do not want to see Bill C-484 connected to abortion whatsoever.

Ken Epp, the member of Parliament who introduced this bill, has worked hard to ensure there cannot be any mistaking that the abortion issue is totally excluded. Please refer to Mr. Epp's website, He has rebutted many of Ms. Arthur's claims, yet she continues to accuse him and anyone who supports this bill of having an ulterior motive. "It definitely is a back-door attempt to attack abortion rights," she told the media.

Here is an MP who is doing something to fight criminal violence, to help protect women and babies, to change the law so that no other grandmother in the future has to go through the grief and insult of being told that the murder of her grandson - that the murder of my darling Olivia's beloved baby, Lane Jr. -- doesn't even register a blip in our criminal justice system.

I also find it an insult that Ms. Arthur suggests my opinion regarding this matter should be irrelevant, as I have a vested interest - my daughter and my grandson were shot to death!

This is what she says on the coalition's website: "While we deeply sympathize with them and understand their wish, it must be recognized that victims of violence are not those who should be making decisions about justice in a democratic society. Appropriate laws and penalties must be determined by impartial parties who do not allow emotion or personal bias to colour their decisions."

Just who are these "impartial parties" she is referring to?

On the one hand she speaks about democracy and on the other she implies that I not be part of the democratic process.

In my own daughter's case, there will be no retribution toward the man who murdered her to kill my grandson. This is "justice in a democratic society"? Ms. Arthur is putting the rights of criminals ahead of the women they abuse, often in very brutal ways, and often done with the intention "to get the baby," to quote the killer of Olivia and baby Lane.

On the one hand she says she "deeply sympathizes" with me, yet if she doesn't recognize the violence against my wee Lane Jr., then what does she have to "sympathize" about?

To you Ms. Arthur: Please show some respect for my daughter's and her unborn baby's memory, for Lane Jr. who I held in my arms and wept for. And I feel that I can ask the same for the rest of the families who are at this time grieving the loss of their loved ones. I hope you never have to experience the pain and anguish and sense of injustice of losing a beloved family member to violence, only to learn that no crime was committed, only to learn that the one your heart breaks for, was of no worth

For those of you who are following this debate from the angle of the long-term impact that you believe it might have on abortion law I would encourage you to look at it from the perspective of a family. A family that had to bury their 19 year old daughter with her infant snuggling in her arms. A family that had named that baby, wanted that baby, and seen a baby born and survive with a comparable gestational age (one week difference). A family where the father of that unborn child and the fiance to the mother wept at the kitchen table in front of reporters talking about how elated they had been to welcome another baby. A man who described going to hold his little boy for the first time and him being dead after he was removed from her womb.
I remember his words - he described that little boy as perfect looking, beautiful, and like a little porcelain doll. The whole family gathered and took turns holding that baby before they had the unenviable difficulty of burying him along with his mother. Mrs. Talbot has been steadfast in her belief that the man who shot her daughter five times killing both her and her unborn child should be charged with two murders. The losses that she has faced inspire her and her entire family. While persons can have concerns about the implications of that and to politically organize to present an alternative opinion it is entirely unacceptable to show a lack of compassion to a family that has faced an unimaginable loss. Mrs. Talbot, I understand, is pro-choice and wants no impact on abortion. She is not someone who is trying to back-door any efforts to make abortion illegal she is just trying to do what she believes is the right thing. Surely, people who are pro choice and against this bill can find some way of communicating an alternative view without insulting this family.