The Abortion Rights Coalition of Canada – which is essentially the voice of one woman named Joyce Arthur – has again and again opposed every law that has been put forth to protect pregnant women from crimes committed against them and their families.
My daughter WAS murdered. Her killer will NOT be held accountable. This is because in Canada it is NOT a crime for anyone at any time, to kill a baby that has not yet been born. Joyce Arthur will have you believe that this is how it has to be to protect women’s rights, but, Molly was less than ten weeks from being born. Cassie was overjoyed to be pregnant with her. Molly WAS Cassie’s choice. What about her rights?
Arthur will tell you we must ignore Cassie’s choice. She will tell you that to protect “all women” we must overlook Cassie… or Olivia, or Roxanne, or countless other women who have been victimized while pregnant.
Arthur is NOT a lawyer. Arthur is NOT a mother. And the media that quotes her fails to disclose these limitations. The media that gives her forum continues to fail to question her contradiction – that to protect the choice of all women we must disregard the choice of some.
Arthur is never asked to support her argument with a logical chain of reasoning, yet her oversimplified catch phrases are continuously echoed from the mouths of people that may not even know who she is.
There is something deeper being allowed to happen here that is not logical or balanced.
The mainstream media has all but ignored this for what it truly is – a violation of a woman’s right to choose. So I will write about it myself.
Pro-Abortion does NOT equal Pro-Choice
A pro-abortion group such as Joyce Arthur’s ARCC does nothing to protect a woman’s choice when she chooses to become a mother. How can they serve to protect “choice” when only one option of that “choice” is being advocated for? Pro-abortion is NOT the same as pro-choice.
Even Arthur herself has stated, “Only the pregnant woman has the right to decide the moral value and status of her fetus, because it’s no-one else’s business. The fetus becomes a person when the woman carrying it decides it does.”
Why then would she oppose every law that would make it a crime for someone to violate that choice? And why would Canada continuously disregard that choice when a pregnant woman is murdered?
Her identifying as “pro-choice” is merely a guise that she uses to hide behind when it suites her argument to whatever acknowledgement of the existence of a fetus she is opposing at the time. Underneath the thin veil it is actually her that is guilty of exactly what she runs around accusing others of being – “anti-choice”.
In fact – without acknowledging the existence of an unborn baby – the true essence of the choice of a woman cannot be fully considered or protected.
Voice for Choice?
Joyce Arthur is masterful at manipulating through fear – and she is continually given a platform. Regardless of being a known extremist, she is most often the only source quoted by the media concerning “woman’s reproductive rights.” This continues to be the case in spite of her willingness to disregard those rights when a woman is murdered.
How do families like ours compete? How do truly pro-choice individuals shine a light on her? Not the light of opinion, but the light of fair representation of facts that come from unbiased opinion? It seems she is able to shield herself from such things with the fear she spreads that to acknowledge the existence of pre-born babies in the law would take away rights of women.
This is not logical or true, but with it she villainizes anyone who questions her as “against the freedom of women” and she deems them “anti-choice” and people take her on her word.
Abortion is a legal option to a woman – when someone takes away that option in an act of violence against her, the true potential of HER choice NEEDS TO BE ACKNOWLEDGED. Anything less is a violation of her rights as a woman.
To suggest it cannot be done without threatening the legal option of abortion to women is sheer and utter nonsense. But there are people who refuse to believe anything less for fear alone.
The real question is – how can anyone who opposes giving legal credence to the choice of these dead women still refer to themselves to be “pro-choice”?
A few of the Laws ARCC has Opposed
An unborn victims of crime law is meant to acknowledges a crime that is a profound violation of both life and choice, but because it would require the criminal code to acknowledge the existence of an unborn baby, the ARCC is willing to overlook the crime against a woman’s right to choose entirely. Here are a few examples of laws that Joyce Arthur/ARCC has opposed.
-Unborn Victims of Crime Law or Bill C-484
In 2008 Bill C-484 was introduced by MP Ken Epp and would have made it a criminal offence for a person to kill an unborn baby in an act of violence against its mother.
This bill was a response to the murder of Olivia Talbot and her unborn son. Arthur very vocally opposed this bill by starting a petition against it claiming “If you give any kind of rights to a fetus – if you recognize it as a person, as this bill does – it automatically conflicts with a woman’s established, constitutional rights,” though, in reality, it did not change the legal status of a fetus in any way.
To this day she quantifies anyone who voted for it as “anti-choice”, again promoting fear of such laws without providing any true substance in her opposition.
Bill C-543 was an act that would require courts to consider pregnancy as an aggravating factor when sentencing those convicted of violence against pregnant women. It was the only bill Arthur didn’t outright oppose. Although she had this to say: “this amendment is not necessary.”
If she truly stood by her statement, “The fetus becomes a person when the woman carrying it decides it does,” how could any consideration to a woman’s choice be “not necessary”?
The problem with this bill is that it leaves it up to the judge’s discretion to include the woman’s choice or not during sentencing. It could therefore still be ignored entirely.
Also, it did nothing for the families who expect the actual crime to be represented in the charges against the accused murderer of their pregnant loved ones.
-Roxanne’s Law or Bill C-510
Roxanne’s Law was a bill introduced in parliament and would have made it a crime to coerce a woman into having an abortion. It was similar to laws that France, Italy and Germany have adopted. The Bill was called Roxanne’s Law.
Roxanne was a 24 year old woman in Winnipeg who was murdered because she would not have an abortion. The Judge in the case, Marvin Garfinkel, referred to the killing a “well-planned execution.”
Arthur, of course, opposed the bill and skewed its intention by saying, “Ironically, the sponsors and supporters of this bill are anti-choice, which means they want to coerce women into having babies by recriminalizing abortion.”
She was able to avert attention from the actual tragedy and replace it with the fear that this was a law that threatened people’s rights.
Arthur also claimed the use of the phrase “unborn child” in the bill implies the fetus has a legal status in law. Never was she asked to substantiate her statement with any type of professional legal opinion.
Fear won out over logic again.
Arthur suggests that this is simply an emotional response to another tragedy and nothing should be done.
She has incorrectly referred to it as a fetal homicide law and compares it to those in the United States even though she knows it is not the same thing. She, if anyone, should understand how delicate the wording has to be so it CANNOT be used for anything other than what it is intended for, yet she has shown no regard for its careful use of language and continues to skew it as another trick by the “pro-life agenda”.
The pictures that were posted in the comments on the ARCC Facebook page of Cassie with the words, “What about her choice?” were removed and further comments from supporters were blocked.
A personal invitation by MP Cathay Wagantall to discuss the bill was ignored.
She even went to the length of sending emails to Members of Parliament telling them that the bill was a “stepping stone” to “restrict abortions” and that, “We can’t let the passage of laws or administration of justice be driven by the grief and anger of victims or their families.”
My daughter was a living entity and the person who destroyed that will not suffer so much as a parking ticket for it. This is a flagrant violation of justice – justice for a woman’s choice, and justice for our families.
But Joyce Arthur is ok with that.
The “Slippery Slope” revealed
The ARCC mandate claims they are “working to represent all Canadian women,” and “support any Reproductive Justice issue that may impact peoples’ rights.” Why then do they advocate against acknowledging the choice of women who have chosen to become mothers when they are the victims of violent crime?
-They have argued that a law like this would not prevent these murders.
-Do any laws against murder prevent murders from happening?
-They have argued that a law like this would give a fetus rights as a human.
-Does a law against hurting a dog give it rights as a human?
-They say that because “pro-life” groups support this law it automatically discredits it.
-This is just nonsense. Of course they would support it.
-They have argued that this is an issue of domestic violence and for that reason no law is needed, only shelters.
-Why should classifying this violence as “domestic” change how our legal system responds to it? Violence is violence – period. Domestic or otherwise should be treated the same way. This is a form of victim blaming and it is profound betrayal to women. An organization such as the ARCC should be acutely aware of this, yet they continue to promote the same social dissonance.
-They have argued it could criminalize pregnant women.
-I challenge them to offer one remotely possible situation (considering the words of THIS law –Bill C-225) to illustrate how this is could be logically possible.
Why have the ARCC not at any time sought and published a fully transparent and independent legal analysis of any of these laws? I challenge them to do so, and I insist on transparent and independent. I have watched them blatantly skew the facts of Cassie and Molly’s Law. I have been a victim to their censorship. I have zero reason trust for them or Joyce Arthur in any way.
The Real Deal
In the ten plus years since the murder of Olivia Talbot and her unborn baby boy, Lane Jr., Joyce Arthur/ARCC have done nothing to find a solution that suits their platform AND acknowledges the choice of women when her and her baby are murdered.
They have maintained that since these women are dead, their choice should not matter in our law.
Part of the consequence of their continued opposition of any such law is the equivalent to making a pregnant woman walk through a bad neighborhood just because it is the shortest way from point A to B – even when there is a safer route. This perspective is fundamentally wrong and it must stop.
They have displayed profound indifference for justice, reality, and most importantly, a woman’s choice.
It is beyond comprehension and all decency that any family is made to lobby a government to have the legal right of their slain loved ones acknowledged. Every single Canadian should feel a sense of shame for a country that, contrary to a woman’s choice, the murder of her unborn child remains legal.
If Arthur has it her way there is no doubt that families like ours will be put in this position time and time again.
To the voting Members of Parliament:
Something truly progressive for women needs to be done here and to regard it as “abortion politics” or “political agenda” is to continue to allow nothing to be accomplished.
You are NOT representing a party when you vote on Cassie and Molly’s Law – you are representing women who have chosen to be mothers and are murdered. Just the same, you are representing the choice of all women – not just the ones who make it through alive. Any other interpretation is dissolution of logic and decency and a perpetuation of the violation of the rights of women.
In a logical reality, a vote against this law is a vote against choice.
I hope for the woman and families of the future that are victims of such horrific tragedies you have the wisdom to see through the thin veil of what people like Joyce Arthur will have you believe. I hope you will let this bill speak for itself.
I hope for the sake of justice YOU are the ones who will finally see fit to lift the veil.
…And To Joyce Arthur/ARCC:
Take an honest look at what you are achieving.
You are not protecting woman’s rights, you are hurting them.
I have no doubt that you have successfully advocated for woman in many situations. But for women who choose to NOT have an abortion you are failing again and again.
You are NOT an advocate for a woman’s choice if you are only willing to protect one of her options. In fact, you have been a cancer to the rights of these women, and it has come at a cost to their physical protection at the very time they should have it most. Please for the sake of women – get right or step down.
You wear your contradiction like a medal. I have no doubt that if one woman in Canada was denied an abortion you would be up in arms, but for these women who have “assigned a value to their fetus” you do nothing for AND you stand in the way of anything being done.
Underneath the veil it is actually you that is guilty of exactly what you run around accusing others of being – “anti-choice.”
To you an unborn baby is not human – and by legal definition – in Canada – you are right. But every unborn child is a living entity regardless of any law, and if it is truly up to a woman to assign the value of “human” to her child as you have stated, then our country is failing to protect a woman’s choice and you are failing just the same. To ignore this unquestionable reality is a willful delusion and it has come at a cost to justice for women, children, and families.
Shame on you Joyce Arthur.
List of women whose choice the ARCC tells us to ignore: