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COMMENTARY · 26th April 2012
Merv Ritchie
Anyone who has read my writing and ranting over the last six years knows I am not an ideologue. I do not support any political party nor am I a “Christian”. Nor do I shy from a debate or taking a position. My position on the recent debate raging in Ottawa, opening the abortion issue up for discussion, finds me apparently on the side of many Christians and Conservatives.

I am clearly against abortion; particularly abortion for convenience, but I am not a Christian fundamentalist, yet I am pro life. Apparently I am an oxymoron, some will say just plain moron. Yes I am a man but that should not exclude me from an opinion on the subject.

My position is simple. First time, health care pays. Second time we take out the reproductive organs so you can’t do it again. Preferably it is not done in the first place.

More than anything else in my life I wanted a family. More than a family I wanted children and I had far more of a nurturing and caring nature than the eventual mother of my children. Further it took me more than one marriage and many relationships just to find a woman who agreed to have a family with me. Don’t get me wrong, I had wonderful loving relationships, it was just most were either afraid of the pregnancy, the responsibility or wanted to have successful careers first. It actually got so bad that I would sneak in a question about children when I was first dating a woman or even at a party prior to a dance. If the girl expressed no interest or disdain for children I would waste no more time getting to know her.

When my children were born it was I who read them stories at the bedside or helped with school work. I made teeth brushing a fun exercise. Whenever I was home I would change their diapers and walk them around the house cuddling them in my arms when they were frightened or couldn’t sleep.

It is a curiosity then when I hear women say a man has no right to have an opinion on abortion. Should women be completely in control of mans right to have a child?

This is a dangerous statement indeed, but a woman has the complete right to hold a man responsible to pay for a pregnancy/child and the government will enforce that responsibility long past the child’s age of majority. Yet what can a man do when he is in a loving relationship and his girlfriend decides to have an abortion? Can he then be compensated for twenty years of the lack of a natural father child relationship? There is no such compensation possible. The heart wrenching loss of a child, in the womb or already delivered, is equally felt by mother and father.

I have personally suffered all degrees of loss in this regard. I may have been the only man ever to burst into the abortion ward in Saskatoon in attempt to stop his girlfriend from going through with it. I was too late. Twenty years later I finally had two beautiful children, the ‘millionaires’ family’, a boy and a girl. She had told me she wanted children. Turns out my desire preceded me and she just wanted to have me as her boyfriend. Later her own girlfriends and family members confided with me that she had always stated she never wanted kids. I have always been a bit naive. Later, when I was older and not so handsome she found someone else. To hurt me especially bad she forbid me access to even see my children. I do not discuss the family and children topic without insight.

Why can’t we have a debate about abortion?

The Canadian cancer society refuses to acknowledge the direct correlation between abortion and breast cancer. Cancer can be blamed on almost anything but mention the almost 50% increased risk after an early trimester surgical abortion to future breast cancer and the crowd of pro abortion activists come out of every nook and cranny to crucify you.

Young women leave abortion wards as emotional wrecks. It gets easier the more you have. It is just like having an affair on your spouse, adultery. The first time is frightening and horrifying. After that however, well you’ve already crossed the line, why not do it again?

Some women hear the cries of the child as it is being killed. Some know so intrinsically it is wrong that their compliance leads them to attempt suicide. Most young women end up hardened. Only a psychopath could leave an abortion ward without some psychological damage.

And this is what the pro life people wish to share. Yes there are numerous crazy Christian fundamentalists, some who will even kill an abortion doctor. These people are even crazier than the pro abortion activists who pretend to be protecting a woman’s right to choose.

They are not protecting a woman’s right to choose, they are preventing the young woman the right to all the information, the right of those to ensure the young woman knows completely what she is facing in the short and long term. Mental anguish and breast cancer are also on that list. It is almost like they want to bring more young women into their mentally deranged state so they are not all alone. Like justifying their own poor decision by seeing that others do the same.

The Canadian Cancer Society does not want you to know about a lot of things, there is far too much profit in death and disease. The death of a fetus is profitable as is the cancer treatment and death of the mother many years later.

When is a child a human? Well, take a live fertilized egg from underneath any bird and break it open. The infant bird will live for a while squiggling in the nest. The exact same thing happens inside the womb as the surgeon sticks in his vacuum probe, first to poke the egg sack, then to kill the squiggling life form before it dies and can be sucked out. Sometimes the kid gets to scream. It gets easier to live with after every operation.

Maybe that is why we cannot have a discussion about it, because it is just too sick a subject.

Hate me if you want but I adore children. I love the sound of children playing in a school ground. Prior to parents, society and TV messing with their heads, they have no prejudices, no evil thoughts. They are purity and innocence; something a women losses completely and absolutely after an abortion. Have no doubt a man feels the very same way, he was either hardened before or he gets hardened afterwards. There is only one thing innocent in this discussion and it is the aborted child. There is simply no excuse.
Heaven FORBID we kill a sled-dog
Comment by MaggieJo Johnson on 5th May 2012
How does it go....

"Be a a whale.
Save a baby...go to jail."
So, you've had your first time....smartenup@
Comment by Don't need to print this on 1st May 2012
Does your policy apply to the man?
"My position is simple. First time, health care pays. Second time we take out the reproductive organs so you can’t do it again."
"I may have been the only man ever to burst into the abortion ward in Saskatoon in attempt to stop his girlfriend from going through with it. I was too late. "
Or are you just advocating (state?) violence against women who do what you think they should not do? If not, better not impregnate a woman who doesn't want to be, eh. That would be your second time.

From Merv; There are laws against rape. And there is the pill, diaphragm, morning after pills, clips for Fallopian tubes, etc, etc, just no excuse for killing a baby.
Religion vs Science
Comment by MaggieJo Johnson on 30th April 2012
Religion always believed it, but it was Science that actually proved that life exists upon the moment of conception.

It's just us humans who choose to refute this one scientific realization in efforts to ease our consciences when we end life in the womb.

What a sad, pathetic, narcisistic race we are. And we thought we were all that, heh?
Well said Bill
Comment by James Ippel on 30th April 2012
Isn't amazing how we try to justify life, even in a one cell form, on a planet millions of miles away and still refuse to accept life in the fertilized egg in the human body.
As in every situation, there are exceptions. I support abortion in the cases of Rape, and Incest, should the victim choose that alternative. The decision "must" be made by the victim without undue duress by outsiders. The victim should receive counselling by a neutral party, and all options must be explained.
Today we have many adoptable children in the Province of B.C. yet we are continually hearing of couples going to Eastern Europe, and China to adopt children. Why is this????
I recently spoke to a father who went through this situation, and he and his wife went overseas to adopt. When I asked why, and the answer I received made my blood run cold. After spending thousands of dollars, and jumping hurdles, jumping through hoops, and having more hurdles thrown in their path, they went overseas. They said that the Ministry workers do not want to have to many adoptions because it would decrease the "Workload" of the Social Workers. Not my words, but the words of an adoptive couple who went overseas, and were very successful. Another adoptive father I talked to had the same story. Regardless of how many children there are in BC to adopt, the roadblocks are prohibative.
Do you think it is time to overhall the adoption system in BC? Maybe it is time to take those in the Department of Families and Children, and give them a good slap upside the head with a 4 x 2 slab.
We all like our jobs, but do we have to keep them at the expence of denying children a future?
I welcome your comments. I am sure you have heard of the same situations that I am talking about.
life on Mars vs. life in the womb
Comment by billbraam on 29th April 2012
Our society would really like to know if life exists or ever existed on Mars. Any slight indication of even a single celled life form would be enough for many scientists to be exceedingly happy. Yet we as a society do not want to acknowledge that a partially formed human life form is a human being, a baby or even an unborn person. We as a society are too unwilling to open the abortion debate. We need a new approach to this dilemma. Instead of demanding rights over a females body we should focusing on asking females to consider the life of the unborn not making the mother feel threatened by us. I beleive that at some level every pregnant mother knows full well what or who is developing inside of her. Because different factions in our society, whether pro-life or pro-choice, want to take their positions to an extreme we have an uphill battle in regarding when a human person starts to exist. We have no problem with coming to the defence of any other defenceless human life form of any age anywhere in the world but are prevented by old fears here at home when we want to decide when life actually begins. Thank you.
Comment by James Ippel on 28th April 2012
Merv, you put forth a compelling arguement, and I fully agree with you. Surprised? You should be, because some of your comments on other subjects lately have left me cold. You say you are not political, but I feel you lean pretty far left at times, instead of remaining on a more central line.
There should not be abortion on demand. This is a method of Birthcontrol by those too damn lazy to take the pill. I know of a Dr. whose career ended when he performed (I think,) the fifth abortion on a girl, and accidently knicked and artery. She died, after also giving birth to five children.
A women claims her body is hers, to do with what she wants. Fine. If she chooses to have sex with a man and becomes impregnated, the man should also have a say in the end result of this pregnancy. Both engaged in the act that caused the pregnancy, so both should have the right to decide the end result.
Some of that will probably raise a lot of hackles, and a more than usual stream of comments is the fact that our MP Nathan Cullen is an advocate of the women being allowed to make the choise of wether or not to continue with the pregnancy, no imput from the man who made the pregnancy possible. This is a rotten question, but has to be asked: what if his wife had said to him, "I don' want twins, and I am going to get an abortion."?
I am the father of twins, and as tough a time when when we were raising them, would I change anything? Would I have thought of abortion? Not in a hearbeat. They were a joy at birth, and now 40+ years later, they are still a light in my life.
Abortion on demand is for those to lazy to take birthcontrol, and the arguement that "I can afford it is Bullsh!t"

No matter what opposing views are...
Comment by MaggieJo Johnson on 27th April 2012
No matter what opposing views are...we most surely can agree that abortions are a most violent act against the most innocent of all.

Right but..
Comment by Samantha. on 27th April 2012
But if people truly believe life does not exist simply because an egg is fertalized, then they aren't obligated to feel what you want them to.
Labels divide people
Comment by Merv Ritchie on 27th April 2012
There are radicals on both sides of this issue as well as in politics. The extremist religious zealot and the radical feminist that hate all men. These are the figure heads people generally see in their minds eye when they hear Pro life or Pro choice. Just like "left" and "right" wing politics, it is a great way to keep people fighting.

When will the cancer society start to attribute abortions to breast cancer, as there is ample evidence to demonstrate? Currently they attribute everything else but. It is all politics and economy, nothing else.

And you are attempting to take the statement I made regarding psychpaths out of context. Moving on is one thing but to feel nothing whatsoever is something all together different. That is the context I made the statement in.
No merv I'm not
Comment by Samantha. on 27th April 2012
I don't agree with using it as a form of birth control either, but I do believe in protecting women. Given that fundamentalists have attacked, killed etc... people who provide and have had abortions.

But to be fair, a young women also can not ask for a hystocrectimy (sp) and get it. So they have no permanent solution either. Unlike men who can get a vasectomy anytime they want it.

It's the judgements pro-lifers make on people who make the choice that I take issue with. And you were not free of those judgements either. Which surprises me.

It is an incredibly personal belief and I respect that people have their views, it's when they are imposed on others that I take issue. it is when you call women psychopaths if they can make a choice and move on.

They actually do get a gambit of information prior to an abortion, they get mental assessment etc... they are free to seek out ALL the information they also need on this wonderful internet. This is the age of intormation after all.

I agree Sam
Comment by Merv Ritchie on 27th April 2012
I have no right to tell a woman, or anyone, what to do with their body. But you are full of crap to tell me the law has nothing to do with me.

I also do not accept the government acting like they own anyone's body.

You completely missed the point. I am completely against abortion being used for birth control and that is exactly what it is being used for. And we are all paying for it, man and women. Through paying for repeated abortions and the cancer treatment afterwards.

It is complete disclosure I am fighting for, not any control over any womans body or rights.

Pro choice generally fight against full disclosure, protecting the young woman from getting the full package of info prior to the first abortion. And where does the pro choice league get their funding from? The cancer society and the government, big flipping surprise there.

Are you fighting for a womans right to keep getting pregnant and having numerous abortions? I personally know many women who do this, is that what you are fighting for?

Lets be honest!
Comment by Samantha. on 27th April 2012
Stating that women leave abortion wards an emotional wreck is a generalization. Whether it was the first or not. if a woman is comfortable with her choice and knows that it was the right CHOICE for her she's not going to leave an emotional wreck. That is a judgement I am shocked at. That if someone doesn't leave a wreck then they must have had more? Or they are immoral?

A woman loses purity and innocence after an abortion? These are the statements and thoughts I take issue with.

I MADE the CHOICE to have my daughter. it was a choice. AND since the father was NOT part of THAT choice, I have never asked for or accepted a penny. Because it was my CHOICE.

This is where the issue comes in for pro-life. There are judgements, generalizations and falsities.

Pro-choice, believe it's a choice. That does NOT mean they are pro-abortion.

The answer is simple, if you do not like abortion don't get one.
You can be pro-life anti-choice
Comment by Samantha. on 27th April 2012
Whatever you want to call it. You have that right. pro-choicers respect that you have that right.

What right you do NOT have, is to tell a woman what to do with her body.

I hate to pull the card, but you're a man. This law affects you NIL. It is not an envasion on your body, it is not a squashing of your rights. I am not necessarily shocked that you are pro-life, I am utterly shocked that you would accept a government telling a woman what she can do with her own body.

And don't pull the rape and unwanted crap
Comment by Merv Ritchie on 26th April 2012
Rape is the most unusual and unlikely cause for an abortion. There is no excuse for horny stupidity. As a man, I would have been more than happy to accept my responsibility after sex. Selfishness is the only excuse for not accepting a reality. Are we that base a society?