July 04, 2008

The Order of Canada jumps the shark

While everyone else was enjoying the big street party yesterday, Canada bestowed its highest civilian honour, quietly and underhandedly, upon Dr. Henry Morgentaler, a Holocaust survivor who believes he should be able to kill as many unborn children as he wants, without legal consequences.

The motto of the Order of Canada is Desiderantes meliorem patriam ("They desire a better country").1 Has Morgentaler's legacy left us a better country? On the contrary, his advocacy has left Canadians polarized and divided over the abortion issue -  to say nothing of the thousands of unborn infants that he and his kind have enabled to be slaughtered for any reason or none. Abortion is so often (and falsely) assumed to be a fundamental human right, that the student Politburos at several Canadian universities have taken steps to officially stifle the real fundamental right of free speech of those students who oppose it. At the very least, causing roughly half of all Canadians to suddenly take offense hardly makes Canada a better place. If Morgentaler's crusade for abortion rights has left Canada a better country, the benefits are, at best, invisible and dubious.

On the other hand, Morgentaler's crusade certainly has benefited Morgentaler. Lest we forget the circumstances of his crusade, it was about his right to open a private, for-profit abortion clinic in 1969. He doesn't seem to be too poorly off. Notwithstanding all the empty platitudes about "safe, legal, and rare" that fall from the lips of abortion advocates, the last thing a professional abortionist would want is for business to be rare.

At every debate on abortion that I have attended, inevitably someone (whether the pro-abortion advocate or someone from the audience in the Q&A) will argue that since men can't get pregnant, their opinion on the abortion issue isn't worth much.  Of course, that argument only counts for men like Jojo Ruba or Scott Klusendorf, who are against abortion. When men are for abortion, like Dr. Morgentaler or the majority of Supreme Court judges who struck down the abortion law in 1988, they get honours, human rights awards, and honorary doctorates.

However, it's now official: The Order of Canada has jumped the shark. Like the Nobel Prize and the Academy Awards, it's no longer about celebrating excellence that all Canadians can be proud of: it's about being one more soapbox for the political hobby horses of the not-so-intelligentsia. Shameful.


1 A motto, ironically, derived from the Bible: "But as it is, they desire a better country, that is, a heavenly one" (Heb. 11:16, emphasis added). As a general rule, the authors of the Bible frowned upon the mass murder of infants.