I’m still looking for a candidate or a party, so I’ve decided to address one issue at a time starting with the easy one – reproductive rights. It shouldn’t be an issue here just like it isn’t an issue in Muslim countries.
OK, it is an issue in the USA. Better to take a look. Just in case.
Abortion was legal in the USA from the time of the Pilgrims until 1840 when individual US states began to outlaw abortion. Abortions and birthing were conducted by mid-wives until doctors began to take control of the reproduction business. By 1900, abortion was illegal everywhere in the USA. In 1973, the US Supreme Court upheld Roe vs Wade and determined that a woman had a constitutional right to an abortion. They did, however, impose second and third-trimester conditions. But, so did the Pilgrims – they only allowed abortion until the mother could feel the fetus move. Today, several states are attempting to challenge Roe vs Wade and bring both doctors and women under state control. That’s paternalism.
Abortion was illegal in Canada from 1869 until 1969. Since 1969 it is legal in Canada at all stages of pregnancy. There was a short period between 1969 and 1988 when abortion required a committee of doctors to certify that continuing the pregnancy would endanger the woman’s life or health. In 1988, in Regina vs Morgentaler, that provision was ruled unconstitutional by the Supreme Court and the 1969 law was struck down. That’s libertarianism.
An EKOS poll in 2010 found 52% of Canadians self-described as pro-choice, 27% as pro-life, and 10% as neither. 11% chose not to answer. Regardless, 80% of Canadians take a position on this topic and 62% of them are pro-choice. Musing: Would the results be different if the pro-lifers would pay to support the children?
In any case, by law and by opinion, abortion should not be an issue in Canada. Yes, there are issues of access for those in rural communities, funding issues in some provinces, weirdly illegal committees in some hospitals, and illegal out-of-province residency refusals. But abortion should not be a political issue in Canada.
The Conservative Party of Canada allows members to vote their conscience which means you have to ask the local candidate in order to know their position. The other parties – except one – expect their members to vote pro-choice in accordance with the party position. The Christian Heritage Party of Canada, which is pro-life, also enforces the party position but they have never had a seat in Parliament.
I am pro-choice – specifically, unrestricted pro-choice. And, in my opinion, if there is ever a vote on this subject, only women should be allowed to vote.
I am still looking for a party or a candidate and I’m glad I started early but I have now eliminated the Christian Heritage Party of Canada.