It’s one thing to use images of a bloodied fetus to sell a political cause, but it’s quite another to allow Chilliwack teens to hand out graphic anti-abortion material in residential areas, said an outraged local mom.
It’s simply the wrong way to go about it, according to Kim Mallory, a Chilliwack business owner and Promontory resident.
After finding a “nasty brochure” on her family’s doorstep, she grew incensed, and vowed to take action.
They were black cards appearing around Chilliwack with no warnings about the contents. They were folded and tucked into door jambs of some local neighbourhoods, including Promontory and Chilliwack proper.
The matter exploded Tuesday night on Mallory’s Facebook profile page, with many of her neighbours chiming in their distaste for the gory photographs, the home canvassing, and for the fact that young people were permitted to distribute them.
“They’ve crossed the line and this needs to be stopped,” said Mallory. “It’s wrong on so many levels.”
There have been no laws restricting abortion in Canada since 1988, when the Supreme Court of Canada struck down the existing legislation as unconstitutional.
The anti-abortion material was produced by endthekilling.ca from Canadian Centre for Bio-Ethical Reform, which uses “graphic” visual campaigns in an attempt to end the rights of women to obtain safe and legal abortions in Canada.
Mallory sent a harsh message to the organization, which she shared:
“It’s one thing to see it out in the world, but it’s quite another when it ends up on your doorstep,” she wrote. “I appreciate what you are trying to do, but my business sense tells me that branding is everything and this is not how you want to educate the masses.
“Society needs to be nurtured and taught peace and love, not shown the violence that they are capable of — it’s just going to create more violence.”
Chilliwack resident and biologist Carin Bondar said she was “horrified” when she found the card tucked amidst some papers on her kitchen table.
“It’s not okay. It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to see that this is garbage, and they should not be allowed to distribute it this way.”
Bondar was glad Mallory decided to make the topic public, adding she was disgusted by the way the image of dead bodies of children allegedly from Rwanda, were compared in terms of pain levels experienced by the aborted fetus.
“I couldn’t believe what I was seeing. I remember distinctly wondering how this got in my house,” she said. “I have four young children, and I’m just glad I got to it before they did.”
This grisly campaign will only alienate people, Bondar said, not bring them on-board.
But outrage is precisely what the anti-choice group is trying to generate.
“In 2001, the Canadian Centre for Bio-Ethical Reform was founded to expose the hidden injustice of abortion and create a public discussion concerning the rights and personhood of the pre-born.”
Through graphic image-based projects and presentations, the group said it began to “force the topic of abortion” into the national consciousness, according to their website.
Those tactics that some find offensive are part of a specific plan:
“We approach you with our strategy to EndtheKilling with a history of results that have confirmed the effectiveness of the tactics we have adopted from other social reformers, such as the abolitionists and the Civil Rights activists.”
But Mallory is not convinced. More positive images of women and the children they had would be preferable and more effective.
“These images only upset people and scare them, and the message is lost,” she continued. “I hope you guys will rethink your strategies.”