Friday, January 04, 2008

Unborn Victims of Crime Bill still getting resistance

Why is it that most of us feel some kind of extra revulsion when a pregnant woman is murdered, but yet the Canadian public is so reluctant to call for additional punishment for the perpetrators?

The Unborn Victims of Crime Bill is still being bogged down by opposition parties and abortion activists who fear it is a slippery slope to the notion of 'personhood' for the fetus.

Perish the thought.


In other news, Kiera Tetley, who was only about one month away from being born, was murdered in Winnipeg on Tuesday, along with her mother Joanne Nadine Hoeppner.


Mother and sister now dead:

Tacked on the fridge of the battered green house was an image from a recent ultrasound of Hoeppner's fetus, showing hair, and a photo of her one-year-old son. Hoeppner wanted to regain custody of him from the foster home where he lives.

Where is your conscience, Canada?


* * * *
Update: It appears that this bill may get more support from the grass roots than politicians realize. The Winnipeg Sun's (albeit unscientific) poll on Jan. 2 shows 87% in favour of a murderer also being charged with the death of the unborn child.

Note to Canadian MP's - Please listen to your constituents.

H/T Hunter in comments.


21 comments:

hunter said...

Someone had a poll today that I read where more than 70% of people from all political party want this bill to pass. Can I find it now? Nope, but I will keep looking.

lanarklady said...

If a women chooses to complete a pregnancy than to take the life of this women is indeed taking the life a two human beings. In a country that has no laws on abortion this law would in no way infringe on the rights of women who choose to abort. By not supporting this bill you in fact take away the rights of women who choose to have a child.

Joanne (True Blue) said...

Nope, but I will keep looking.

Thanks, Hunter.

People need to contact their MP's about this - especially the ones on the left.

Lemon said...

It's not about polls or public opinion. It's about what is right.
How can a society reconcile the fact that a preemie at 7 months can receive the full benefit of medicare for survival, but that a 8.9999 month "fetus" can be aborted?
The public policy issue is also significant (assuming that a government enacts public policy for the benefit of, well, the public).
The number of abortions in the last 25 years is almost identical to the number of immigrants.
If there had been no abortions, then we would have had no need for immigration and we could march merrily on into a mutual beneficial future.
The stupidity is momentus in scale.

Joanne (True Blue) said...

Lemon, as much as I agree with you, it is important to separate abortion from the 'Unborn Victims of Crime' debate.

We are talking about a woman's right to choose to have her baby - and someone taking right away from her (as well as her own life).

Lemon said...

Darling, we're almost always on the same side. Almost.
But logically, from my POV, there is only one consistent position.
To say that murdering a fetus with a gun is wrong but murdering a fetus with a spatula is not is inconsistent.
And I'm not a fundamentalist.
No?

hunter said...

I found a poll, at the Winnipeg Sun.

2008-01-02

Should the person who shot a pregnant woman to death be charged with killing her unborn baby?

yes 87%
no 13%


Total Votes for this Question: 2306
Still not the article I read, but it shows strong support for this bill.

Joanne (True Blue) said...

Thanks, Hunter. We need to keep the pressure on about this. When Parliament resumes, let's have these tidbits ready.

Joanne (True Blue) said...

To say that murdering a fetus with a gun is wrong but murdering a fetus with a spatula is not is inconsistent.

Darling? lol!

From my own personal POV, I agree with you.

However, if you look at this from the side of the 'woman's right to choose', which is a holy, entrenched right, according to the activists, then when someone takes away the right of the woman to carry the pregnancy to term, shouldn't that merit some kind of special punishment?

-Especially if the unborn baby died, but the mother somehow lived?

So in this case, logical consistency tells me that if we have the right to choose to allow abortion enshrined and funded in our country, then we have to have to provide equal protection to the woman who exercises her decision to give birth to her baby.

SUZANNE said...

I think opposing this bill is sexist.

Whatever a man produces or owns, when he is deprived of it, society compensates him or his estate for that loss.

A woman produces a fetus-- she is deprived of it, but society does not compensate her-- or her estate-- for that loss?

Does anyone else see the double standard?

Favouring equality means favouring this bill.

Lemon said...

The old Rights argument is one that shouldn't be won.
The Right to Abortion could have been enshrined in the constitution.
It could be decided on by the courts.
It could be decided on by Parliament.
But, of course, we have no law in Canada that legalizes (or liiegalizes) abortion.
So, it is a convention - a consensus that we will allow abortions.
But since this war of philosophy (or morality) was fought, things have changed drastically.
For example, birth control is available for free for women of all ages and all financial circumstances. There is no reason to become pregnant unless it's so desired.
Another argument is the old one - when does life begin (and I'm not referring to 'when the dog dies and the kids move out'). If a 'fetus' is able to live on its own, then does it's cause of death matter?
We also get to the cases where we have allowed post-birth abortions by not criminally charging mothers who have abandoned new borns.

We are not the first to debate the whole issue and won't be the last, and I don't spend all my time worrying about it. So things will unfold regardless of what I say or you do.

But I think that the right stance on the incidental murder of a fetus as a result of the murder (or attempt murder) of the mother is best decided in a way that does not consider the fetus as a crime victim. That way there is legal consistency.

But I won't try to force my opinion on others.

Joanne (True Blue) said...

But I think that the right stance on the incidental murder of a fetus as a result of the murder (or attempt murder) of the mother is best decided in a way that does not consider the fetus as a crime victim. That way there is legal consistency.

Thanks for that. Food for thought. I do appreciate your input and I will ponder what you've said.

Lemon said...

Jo - I will not try to change minds on this and appreciate that you think I have given you something to think about.

I find Suzanne's comment a little bothersome:
Whatever a man produces or owns, when he is deprived of it, society compensates him or his estate for that loss.
This assumes that men (or really man - the other parent) suffers no loss when a fetus is killed. All the men I know go through the entire pregnancy with the same commitment and joy and pain (but of course not in the same way) as the mother(to be or not).
And granting rights relative to the child(to be or not) to the male-parental-unit only at the point of birth can also be argued as wrong.
Assuming only a woman has a responsibility, interest, and commitment to the fertilization, incubation, birth and life of a child is a legacy of 6o's burn the bra debate.
Is there not a double-standard at work in the status quo?
Our job as a society should be to raise as many healthy and happy children as possible and offer them all the opporunity for advancement as we can.
Now I'll get nasty notes from Greer and Steinem.

Joanne (True Blue) said...

This assumes that men (or really man - the other parent) suffers no loss when a fetus is killed.

That bothered me a bit too, but I think Suzanne, like myself, is trying to frame the argument from the Feminists' POV, in an effort to try to get them to see how their own logic should support the protection of the fetus in the case where a woman chooses to carry on with her pregnancy.

Joanne (True Blue) said...

Assuming only a woman has a responsibility, interest, and commitment to the fertilization, incubation, birth and life of a child is a legacy of 6o's burn the bra debate.

Actually, I just thought of a scenario to support your argument. Supposing a woman agreed to in-vitro fertilization as a favour to some gay friends who wanted a baby, and then that woman was murdered weeks before giving birth and the baby couldn't be saved.

Wouldn't that couple be entitled to some kind of retribution? Some kind of justice and recognition of their almost-born child, for whom they already would have likely been preparing?

Raphael Alexander said...

The "slippery slope" argument is unconvincing. Protecting a woman's choice to have a child, the opposite side of the freedom of choice coin, should also be honoured in a free society, and protected under the law.

Joanne's moderate stance on this issue is also the way to go. Invoking any mention of abortion in this issue is detrimental to the greater cause of protecting the rights of women.

Joanne (True Blue) said...

Invoking any mention of abortion in this issue is detrimental to the greater cause of protecting the rights of women.

And in the cause of protecting woman, we may in fact protect the baby.

Consider the heinous murder of Roxanne Fernando who was killed because Roxanne refused to have an abortion.

To add insult to injury, one of the accused is protected under the YCJA.

It makes me want to vomit.

Anonymous said...

it is linked to abortion. can't keep killing the unborn if a law is passed that makes it a crime to kill the unborn while commiting another crime. how many of you out there could or would kill an unborn child with their own two hands. it's ok as long as you don't have to see it or do it.

Joanne (True Blue) said...

Can't keep killing the unborn if a law is passed that makes it a crime to kill the unborn while commiting another crime.

And there my friends, is the fatal flaw with our lack of abortion restrictions - We as a Canadian society have decided that it is the privilege of the pregnant woman to decide whether or not her unborn baby will live or die; unless someone else murders her and/or the baby, in which case her 'right to choose' is taken away.

SUZANNE said...

Lemon, I'm sorry if you mistook my argument as some kind of argument against men.

The thing is: the father is not always in the picture, but the mother always is. And father and the family do not always want the baby, but so long as the mom carries it, she's wants or there is a possibility that she may want it. She might want an abortion, but there's always a possibility someone may change her mind until the deed is actually done.

There's no doubt that the mom is more connected to the pregnancy and the fetus.

Our legal system wouldn't really buy the argument of a father being entitled to a fetus. It should, but it's not a persuasive argument in our present system.

Lemon said...

Suzanne, no prob.
The whole male rights re fetus argument always get's me remembering The Life of Brian.
So I'm gonna post about the funniest thing I ever saw...