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Commentary

Hiding the Truth

Tue, December 16, 2014   |   Author: Rod Taylor   |   Volume 21    Issue 51   

When governments try to cover up facts and statistics, it usually sends a signal that they are hiding something they are ashamed of, something that would prove embarrassing or hard to explain to voters and taxpayers. When they cover up the cover-up, that signal gets even louder. The provincial governments of Ontario and British Columbia are hiding statistics on abortions and they’re not eager to talk about it.

Effective Jan. 1, 2012, section 65 of Ontario’s Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act (FIPPA) was amended to exclude records relating to the provision of abortion services. There was no public announcement of this extraordinary change. In fact, there was no debate or discussion of it in the Hansard records before it was passed into law. It was simply approved by Ontario’s Liberal cabinet back in the McGuinty era (which, come to think of it, isn’t much different from the Wynne era). It’s old news now, but how many Ontarians are aware of this very narrow exclusion: why should abortion be the only medical procedure for which costs, demographics, causes, outcomes, and trends are no longer available to the public? Patricia Maloney, an Ottawa-area pro-life blogger discovered the anomaly when seeking statistics through a normal Freedom of Information request. Her request was denied and she was told that the information she was seeking was not information the Ontario government would be releasing.

If we lived in Russia, China, North Korea, or Iran, we might not be surprised. The brutal dictatorships of the world have always practised truth-suppression. They’ve figured out that it’s inconvenient if people “know too much.” Taxpayers might object if they knew how many millions are spent killing babies. Folks who care about social issues and who have believed the old mantra about abortions being “safe, legal, and rare” might discover that they are not rare and not safe (not even for the mother and never for the baby). In 2010, the last year for which Ontario abortion statistics are available, the Ontario Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care indicated that there were 18,330 abortions carried out in doctors’ offices, 16,055 in private facilities, and 9,612 in hospitals, for a total of 43,997 abortions. By contrast, the Canadian Institute for Health Information (CIHI) reported only 28,765 abortions for Ontario in 2010. The discrepancy is at least partially a result of the fact that private clinics are not required to report this information. What’s with that? Why can’t we have accurate reporting of medical procedures?

It’s amazing to me, in a country where large numbers of people who are up in arms about the introduction of private health care for any other purpose, are quite content to tolerate the killing of babies in private clinics, using taxpayer-dollars, and with no accountability, even for properly recording the numbers, ages, and outcomes of these procedures. Taxpayer dollars which have been designated to treat disease and cure medical problems are being used not to cure illness but kill our most helpless…and we are not even allowed to know how much it’s costing? This is disturbing and should be a topic for every radio and TV talk show host until this secrecy provision is exposed to the public and rolled back. It is estimated (at an average cost of $1600 per baby killed) that abortions cost Ontario taxpayers about $70 million in 2010 alone, the last year for which we have figures. I wonder how many hip replacements or ultrasound machines could have been purchased with that money?

Ontario is not alone in this conspiracy to conceal the social and economic costs of their “safe, legal, and rare” policies. In BC, approximately 15,000 babies are killed each year, now under a cloak of secrecy, with a very similar policy of truth-suppression regarding abortions. In 2001, the BC NDP government of the day, as one of their last acts before they were defeated, passed Bill 21, an amendment to the BC Freedom of Information Act, which disallowed public release of information on abortion. The BC Liberals who replaced them have done nothing to change the policy of trying to hide abortion statistics.

Well-known pro-lifer Ted Gerk, in concert with other BC activists, has made diligent attempts to have government reverse that decision but so far has not found enough politicians with the courage and moral integrity to address the cover-up of information. Where is our national broadcaster when it comes to exposing the deeds of darkness? Where is the public outcry over this outrage?

When people have all the information they can make better decisions for themselves and for their loved ones. If women were told about fetal development and about the increased likelihood of breast cancer, there would be fewer abortions. If taxpayers knew what they were paying for and given an opportunity to redirect those funds to true health care needs, there would be fewer abortions. If the public knew that 60% of abortions are the result of coercion from a boyfriend or parent, they would be less supportive of the current abortion paradigm. The Christian Heritage Party is concerned about the abuse of power and the withholding of information from the public. Join us and help us press for transparency in the thorough reporting of publicly-funded medical procedures.

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