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Pierre Elliott Trudeau (18 October 1919 – 29 September 2000) was Prime Minister of Canada from to 1968 to 1979 and from 1980 to 1984. Pierre Trudeau resigned in 1984 so he could look after the education of his three sons.

Pierre Trudeau’s son Justin Trudeau (b. 25 December 1971) is the leader of the Liberal Party of Canada and he could be elected Prime Minister on 19 October 2015. He is one of the candidates.

Planned Parenthood

It appears a government shutdown over the matter of Planned Parenthood has been averted. But Planned Parenthood is an important issue and it is in no way frivolous. The family is still the basic organizational component of our society and this component begins with the couple. Children are born to a man and a woman who engage in sexual intercourse and usually manage their fertility.

Gone are the days when we let nature decide the number of children a couple produced, and it would be unrealistic to expect couples not to engage in sexual intercourse unless they are ready to face the consequences: a pregnancy. Hence Planned Parenthood or birth control, which involves consultation(s) with a medical doctor. A woman’s health could be at risk.

Abortion

Abortions do not seem an acceptable form of birth control. They are a last recourse. Men and women should act responsibly. However, there are times when an abortion may be a doctor’s only way of ensuring the health of his patient and that of her child. Alcohol and drugs, including medication, can harm the fetus. Remember Thalidomide. Those brave children!

Moreover, no woman should be forced into a pregnancy. That would constitute an unacceptable intrusion on her privacy and, in some cases, an unwanted pregnancy can jeopardize a woman’s health and life. For instance, if a pregnancy is the result of rape, it would be cruel not to terminate it as soon as possible.

The Criminal Law Amendment Act, 1968-69

To borrow Pierre Elliott Trudeau’s words, governments should bring “the laws of the land up to contemporary society.” Where abortions are concerned, in Pierre Trudeau’s view, doctors were better than lawyers in deciding when a pregnancy was a danger to a woman’s health. A woman’s health, mental and physical, was Pierre Trudeau’s main concern regarding abortions, but the health of the fetus should also be taken into consideration. There are times when a woman carries a child who will die within a few days or a few weeks. I lost a large number of siblings to a congenital blood disease. They died shortly after birth: a few days or a few weeks. Nothing could be done to save them.

Pierre Trudeau is remembered as the Canadian Prime Minister who said “Just watch me,” when a cell, the Chénier cell I believe, of the Front de libération du Québec, a terrorist organization, kidnapped British diplomat James Cross (born 29 September 1921) and killed Pierre Laporte (25 February 1921 – 17 October 1970), Quebec’s Deputy Premier and the Minister of Labour. I have written a post on the October Crisis.

“There is no place for the state in the bedrooms of  the nation.”

Pierre Trudeau is also the Canadian Minister of Justice who stated that there was “no place for the state in the bedrooms of the nation.” That famous statement was about homosexuality, not planned parenthood.

I would like to show a brief video, less than three minutes in length, that sums up Pierre Trudeau’s view on homosexuality and abortion. Trudeau also discusses the use of breathalyzers. I am showing this video, The Omnibus Bill, because the Republican-led United States Congress threatened a government shutdown over the matter of Planned Parenthood.

I can’t believe I have written the above, but the matter of Planned Parenthood does not justify a government shutdown. I tend to believe this is yet another instance of obstructionism on the part of a Republican-led Congress. I would hate to think that threatening a government shutdown over the cost of Planned Parenthood reflects an elected representative’s view of human sexuality and, particularly, his or her view of women. Some couples cannot have children of their own, and some couples choose not to be parents. But the family remains the basic component of our society.

Pierre Elliott Trudeau: The Omnibus Bill (simply click on the title to view the video)

This post has been revised.

With kind regards to all of you.

Maison Cormier, Trudeau's House in Montreal
The Cormier House, Pierre Trudeau’s House in Montreal (Photo credit: Wikipedia)