A friend of mine alerted me to the fact that Toronto Star columnist and recently-resumed blogger Antonia Zerbisias has issued a challenge to us bloggers to recognize the American “blog for choice day” today, the anniversary of Roe vs. Wade. (She also points out that “January 28th marks the 20th anniversary of R. v. Morgenthaler, the Canadian Supreme Court decision, the one that declared it unconstitutional to force a woman to carry a fetus to term.”)
I was reminded of said challenge last night as I joined young Greens for a pub night at the Imperial Pub near Dundas Square. This billboard currently imposes itself directly outside the bar. (Apparently those who oppose a right to choose also pick this time of year to make their case.)
Therefore, since today I’m both a blogger and a candidate in the middle of an election campaign, I’ll quote from the Vision Green chapter on Women’s Equality to let you know that Green MPs (including this one) would “oppose any possible government move to diminish the right of a woman to a safe, legal abortion. We fully support a womanâ€™s right to choose. We will also expand programs in reproductive rights and education to avoid unwanted pregnancies, and expand supports for low-income mothers.”
Now, if you’ve been reading NDP blogs (or possibly been listening to some NDP volunteers at the door), the above might surprise you. Unfortunately, some NDP supporters have taken to spreading a lie about Elizabeth May, saying that she believes the opposite of what’s printed above. You should know that that’s not true, no matter how often Elizabeth’s words are selectively and/or misquoted. (In a 15 minute recorded statement made over a year ago, Elizabeth explained that she doesn’t believe abortion is something to be desired or treated casually, but that she recognizes and affirms the need for women to have access to safe legal abortions. I expect that’s the position of most Canadians. She also said that she herself would never have an abortion, which some “pro-choice” people have criticized her for, apparently without realizing what the word “choice” means.) Anyone concerned about that whole affair should read Elizabeth’s open letter to Judy Rebick.
Or, if you’d rather not rehash past drama, know that I, the Green Party (as the only major national party led by a woman) and Elizabeth May are all firmly committed to advancing women’s equality and rights.
I just got off the phone with Laurie Arron. Laurie (who is currently studying in France) is a friend, a Green Party supporter, and a prominent member of our community. As the Former Director of Advocacy for Egale and the former National Coordinator of Canadians for Equal Marriage, he knows a thing or two about winning an uphill political struggle. (He also knows how to successfully work himself out of a job, an aspiration of all good Green candidates. ;-) )
Laurie asked me to share with you the following, which I’m adding to my growing endorsements page. (My campaign manager Jeff has informed me he’s going to explore having our office door widened in case I start having a hard time fitting my head through the frame.)
Given its diverse makeup and history, the riding of Toronto Centre should be at the leading edge of Canadian politics—and that means electing Canada’s first Green Member of Parliament. Canada needs Green MPs now. In this election, Chris Tindal is the only viable alternative to Bob Rae…the only candidate with the ability to unite voters across the riding. Chris is fresh, intelligent, enthusiastic, the ideal voice to represent Toronto Centre in Ottawa.
I’m glad to have been able to facilitate a guest blog post by Elizabeth May about the Linda Keen/Gary Lunn nuclear fiasco over on Scott Tribe’s blog. (Scott runs the Progressive Bloggers aggregate, of which I’m a member.) Read the post and how the connection happened over on Scott’s site.
I continue to be humbled by all the great people who are endorsing my campaign, often without even being asked. If you’ve been following this site or received a letter from us, you know that they include prominent people from all of the old-line parties, as well as a diverse group of community leaders from across the riding. Along that line, I received the below letter from author and crime journalist James Dubro, who, as you’ll see, has an impressive CV. James, thank you for your confidence and your support.
The Green Party programs to address crime are the most progressive and sensible one of all the parties. The legalization of pot is an important step to taking some of the fuel out of the enormous growth and power of gangs and organized crime in our society. The war on drugs failed a long time ago, and making criminals out of users is a mistake and only helps the criminal mobs in Canada, not society.
Moreover the Green Party overall program on the environment is by far the most sensible and coherent. We need elected Green Party Members of Parliament to help improve our quality of life. Most of the other parties are tired, cynical, and not credible (some are even corrupt!). They have had their chance and failed. Now is the time to give some Greens like Chris Tindal and Elizabeth May a chance to bring some rational alternatives in Parliament.
Chris, we need idealistic, rational, intelligent, dedicated people like you in Parliament to make this country work better. The Green Party is for a progressive 21st-century-Canada while the older parties—especially the Liberals and the Conservatives—are stuck in the 20th and 19th centuries.
Former President of the Crime Writers of Canada
Former Chair of the Church Wellesley Neighbourhood Police Advisory Committee
Former Chair of the 52 Division Community Police Liaison Committee
Former Director of the Canadian National Lesbian and Gay Journalists Association