A few blogs back I wrote about a bill in front of the House of Commons here in Canada entitled the “Unborn Victims of Crime Act,” or Bill C-484. In my blog I described some of the fears that the pro-choice community has here in Canada in regards to this bill and how it is a huge threat to legalized abortion in Canada by paving the way for fetal rights arguments. I remember at the time thinking, wow this bill is really dangerous and could potentially cause a lot of problems, but that I shouldn’t worry too much as there was very little chance that this would get passed. Boy was I wrong!
To date the bill has passed two readings in the Canadian parliament, and is one reading away from being passed into law. Now for those of you unfamiliar with Canadian politics, this does not mean that it will be proclaimed into law right away, as our senate would still have to review it and has the power to reject the bill, or send it back to the House of Commons for further debate. However, this rarely happens so the law is closer to being passed than we would like to think. It wouldn’t mean an immediate end to legalized abortions in Canada, but it would be a huge boost to the anti-choice movement in helping to recognize a fetus as an individual with rights. The Abortion Rights Coalition of Canada recently released a document detailing exactly how dangerous “unborn victim” laws are by using the United States as an example.
Many states have passed fetal rights legislation to the detriment of women in the country. They detail how such laws have nothing to do with protecting pregnant women from violence, but rather policing the behaviour of pregnant women. It seems recently that the anti-choice movement in Canada is becoming more vocal, and is able to push their agenda without really creating too much of a fuss. I will continue to follow this bill and publish updates as they become available.