Canadian government advice defines abortionists as terrorists

Terrorist Financing [fintrac.gc.ca]

Discuss

68 Responses to “Canadian government advice defines abortionists as terrorists”

  1. daneyul says:

    Have to think that’s a typo and someone forgot the “anti-”.

    • Rob Hawk says:

      The french version says “des partisans de l’avortement” so they managed to typo it twice.

      • Stooge says:

        One of the two isn’t a typo but an accurate translation of the original. Unless you’re suggesting that the Canadian government habitually has stuff written up in a third language and then translated into both English and French.

    • bwcbwc says:

      But even then, it’s not a fair characterization. Every single-issue movement has its nuts. Why single out abortionists or anti-abortionists from, say, Maple Leafs fans? (Or whatever group contains the Canadian equivalent of soccer hooligans as a subset)

    • Mordicai says:

      I can only assume.  I mean.  Based on the actual anti-abortion terrorism.

  2. Or someone is lazy and they’ve been using the same text for the last 40 some odd years.

  3. Brian says:

    My thought, too, that someone forgot the “anti”  in front of abortionist.

  4. David Hayes says:

    Seems reasonable, people using bombs to further a political goal sounds like terrorism to me

  5. I have not heard of abortionists using bombs to get their message across, though. It seems a radical form of surgery.

  6. Seems to be a typo for anti-abortionists given the context.

    As to whether ecological extremists are terrorists, this is an interesting issue. The vast majority of such have only engaged in property damage. Is that not terrorism? What if they’ve made threats against life and limb like some of the animal rights extremists?

    There’s an associated issue- defining “terrorism” and “terrorist” is really difficult. There was a UN report a few years ago which found more than sixty (I don’t remember the exact number) definitions of terrorism in the literature. 

  7. Romeo Vitelli says:

    It also specifically mentions clinics as being targeted and the anti-abortionists are the only ones who are doing that.

  8. jennybean42 says:

    In b4 the abortion debate derails this thread…

  9. Taavet Ropp says:

    It’s a typo made in English, then translated into French.

  10. sum.zero says:

    abortionist? is that like an evolutionist? i’ve never heard a pro-choice person refer to themselves in this way…

  11. matlockexpressway says:

    Wasn’t “militant” intended to apply to each subsequently listed object?

    Compare: “I like watching the idiotic Larry, Curly, and Moe.” In that statement, “idiotic” obviously modifies all three objects, not just Larry.

    I think you’re reading into this what you want to read into this.

  12. Tyler Elkink says:

    Yeah, and those darned pesky military minority rights groups! We don’t need anyone disturbing the status quo with their _convictions_ and stuff. >:[ “Militant” is a handy way to smear the distinction between “vocal” and “violent,” isn’t it?

    Trying hard to not derail the thread with abortion stuff, but the only pro-life/pro-choice activist I know of that’s still going is a woman in her 70′s who pickets the three clinics in Ontario, specifically because she doesn’t think the government has a right to restrict free speech in public places. There’s never been a Canadian abortion clinic bombing, though that was the reason offered by the Morgentaler clinics for getting the court injuction back then. Buncha FUD, I think…

    • Rob Hawk says:

      May 18 1992 – Firebombing of the Morgentaler Clinic?

      • Lobster says:

        That wasn’t terrorism.  It was.. uh… cold.  Yes, clearly that was just a concerned citizen who wanted to save the abortionist some money in heating bills.  In fact you could call him a Samaritan, if there was something seriously wrong with you.

  13. satn says:

    I’m not sure eco-property-destruction is terrorism, as it’s rarely ment to scare or ‘terrorize’ the opposition, but rather to stop an activity by damaging equipment.

    • Lobster says:

      I think that the eventual goal of ecological “extremists” is to stop the activity entirely.  If the company rebuilds, repairs and starts up again, that’s not really mission accomplished. 

      I am NOT making a value judgment here; if you support the ecological dudes then that’s fine, if you don’t then that’s fine too.

      • satn says:

        Yeah but they don’t try to shut them down with fear, or threats…the goal of most is to make the activity so expensive or time consuming that the company cannot make a profit and abandons the activity.

        Still illegal and vandalism, but hardly terrorism

    • paul says:

      It’s an awfully thin line — anyone who is around the equipment being damaged with probably be scared. And some activities, like spiking trees, can cause serious injury (you don’t get called “not a terrorist” if you always call in your bombs).

      But all that is moot because we all know that corporations are people and money is their lifeblood. So any political act that causes a corporation to lose money is ipso facto terrorism.

      • Guest says:

        tree-spiking? Seriously? You think ‘eco-terrorists’ still do this? Not for 20 years. The point is to not hurt anyone, and this has been understood by the movement for decades now. So please don’t talk about tree spiking in the present tense. 

      • rrh says:

        I’ve always been partial to “saboteur.”

  14. Lobster says:

    Yes, I’m certain that the entire point of an abortion clinic is to terrify its patients.  Clearly that’s why women go there.  In fact maybe that’s how they perform the abortion: they just horrify women until they miscarry.  It all makes sense.

    Wait, no, not sense.  The other thing.  The thing that’s the exact opposite of sense.

  15. RedMonkey says:

    The French and English being the same doesn’t mean it’s not a typo – it may have been produced by an English writer and sent to a translator who, not knowing the context, would be mechanically translating the words. Abortion is largely a legal medical procedure in Canada, with certain exceptions, so “abortionist” doesn’t really make any sense – further what clinic exactly would an abortionist bomb?

  16. Teirhan says:

    if they’re talking about ANTI-abortion activists this makes sense.  But I don’t think they’re intending for “abortionist” to be parsed in this way?

    EDIT: i see now that everyone and their dog has basically said what i said. disregard!

  17. Tyler Elkink says:

    Huh. Well, I’m full of shit, then. Mea culpa. I’ll have to start pointing out the entirely reasonable nature of the injunctions as a reaction to a bombing. Thanks for pointing that out!

    Mind you, I still don’t see how restricting protesting reduces the risk of a bombing. Especially in 2011. *shrug*

  18. Brainspore says:

    Now I’m trying to think of who a crazed pro-choice terrorist would even bomb. Any medical facility that DIDN’T perform abortions?

    • tomdarch says:

      Presumably, if abortion rights supporters were simply the mirror image of abortion prohibitionists, then they would bomb the headquarters and/or churches of the abortion prohibitionists, or they would use sniper rifles to shoot leaders of the abortion prohibition movement in their homes.  It’s interesting that such things don’t seem to happen…

      • Brainspore says:

        Presumably, if abortion rights supporters were simply the mirror image of abortion prohibitionists, then they would bomb the headquarters and/or churches of the abortion prohibitionists…

        But the anti-abortion terrorists I’ve heard of didn’t target people who support abortion legislation, they targeted the actual practitioners and facilities where abortions take place. What’s the mirror image of that? A fertility clinic?

    • Lobster says:

      The homes of obstetricians, I suppose.  NO babies for ANYONE!

  19. rebaj says:

    as an abortionist myself (no, really, i’m a gyn) I have to say, I haven’t yet used a bomb.  many  instruments are needed to perform an abortion. haven’t seen a bomb used yet. 

  20. Charlie B says:

    Anti-abortion activists have been calling abortionists “terrorists” for at least a decade now.  Do you people not read the pamphlets?  That kind of name-calling is pretty mainstream in the radical Catholic anti-choice brigade.  It may be a typo, but it would not really surprise me if the person who wrote this did not think that characterization was unusual.

    Here, look – World Net Daily, the same people who say “Occupy Wall Street” is a front for George Soros:

    http://www.wnd.com/news/article.asp?ARTICLE_ID=39147

  21. Kasia says:

    A PBS documentary discussed this issue with sophistication and depth. Some “eco-terrorists” burned down a lumber mill to protect old growth forest in Oregon (making sure no one would be hurt). Their intention was property destruction–but when they were caught, they were forced to accept plea bargains and plead guilty  to terrorism in exchange for lighter sentences (7 years versus life sentences). One person, Daniel McGowan, is still serving his sentence in a special communication moniored prison with other “terrorists.”
    http://www.pbs.org/pov/ifatreefalls/
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Daniel_G._McGowan

  22. Scott Harris says:

    I think the ‘and’ in “and as using violence and criminal activities to further their agendas” is intended to be Boolean, so none of these groups are defined as terrorist unless they use violence and criminal activities. That seems fair enough.

  23. Ben Ehlers says:

    Note to self: When starting a militant group, make sure you have two special interests. 

  24. chgoliz says:

    Whether or not the “abortionist” reference was a typo, there’s still a trend in the listing of presumed terrorists:

    - militant minority rights activists….but not white supremacists;
    - abortionists….but not organized groups of religious zealots;
    - animal rights activists and ecological/environmental extremists….but not the executives of the companies that knowingly and willfully cause widespread death and destruction to animals or property because it’s easier and more profitable than finding a less extreme option.

    When terrorism is defined as a liberal mechanism, only liberals will be recognized as terrorists.

    • Guest says:

      As if  ‘liberals’ give a shit about women… lol

      • chgoliz says:

        Or animals. Or the environment.

        It’s the perception that liberals are into unimportant, girly things like caring about something other than cold hard cash…whether or not it’s true in each individual case.

        I worked with Republicans in the 1970s on the ERA and abortion rights.  The lines are drawn very differently now.

  25. “Why single out abortionists or anti-abortionists from, say, Maple Leafs fans?”

    I don’t think Maple Leaf fans have ever blown anything up, nor have they had reason to in the last 40-odd years. Canuck fans on the other hand …

  26. Don’t know if someone has already pointed this out, but in response to “why don’t the list religious fanatics, etc”

    “Single-Issue Terrorists” is just one terrorist subgroup listed by the CND gov on this page, here are the others:

    http://fintrac.gc.ca/multimedia/education/c1/2-3-eng.asp

    • chgoliz says:

      The headings are:

      - Al-Qaida
      - Other Islamist Extremists
      - Homegrown (meaning, angry at the country they’re living in)
      - Nationalistic
      - Single-Issue

      Do you see any religion other than Islam on that list?

      • Lobster says:

        I don’t see any other religion on that list, no, but don’t discount the “extremist” part.  Now it’s wrong to single out a single religion’s extremists (aren’t ALL extremists dangerous?) and the word “extremist” doesn’t really MEAN a whole lot, but at least the entry isn’t just “Muslims.”

  27. Bill Walsh says:

    Finally, an issue I can go and occupy on the 15th about!

  28. Chuck says:

    To be fair, I expect they include anti-abortionists as terrorists too.
    So we’re all terrorists.

  29. oohShiny says:

    What do you suppose the actions of a militant abortionist would be? Shooting pregnant women, perhaps? O_o Maybe a fringe group that simply considers killing people *really* late-term abortion? Thoughts?

  30. Teller says:

    Maybe they meant to write abortophobes.

  31. theminx says:

    I’ve emailed them and will let you know what, if anything, they have to say for themselves (aside from the auto-reply I got).

  32. qualiagirl says:

    Just sent this – it felt good!

    To Whom It May Concern,

    You have no doubt been inundated with queries about the “Example Categories” page on your site since its posting on boingboing.net. Nevertheless let me add my voice to the list. I am a library technician at Vancouver Public Library with 20 years experience in historical research and database mining. I am hopeful that the ideological slant of the page is simply a question of semantics, which may be corrected with more astute editing, and more intelligent composition. However, in all my research I have yet to discover any event or act of terrorism committed by an “abortionist”. This error is egregious and requires immediate attention. I look forward to its removal from your page, and would appreciate notification when the edit takes place.

  33. A. David says:

     “a helpful banker’s guide to spotting “single-issue terrorists,” which includes…” . Yet another reason to be refused a loan: discernable proofs of consciousness. “Mr. Shitbag, your loan application was refused because you have morals and principles….that conflict with my godhead. We believe you may decide to do something radical: like resisting us when we decide to screw you over. Thank you and goodbye.”

  34. icecube says:

    Didn’t take long for that page to be removed from the government website.  Anyone got a back-up of that particular webpage?  I’m curious to see what is says in whole.

  35. Daemonworks says:

    I suspect that “abortionist” was probably originally intended to refer to the people who oppose abortion rather than the doctor that perform them, but got inverted by mistake and that nobody caught it.

    Mostly because it’s the only group on the list that can’t be stretched to fit any remotely reasonable defitinion of terrorist.

  36. urbanspaceman says:

    Since the Canadian government wrote this, I think its safe to assume it’s a typo. If this passage were written by say, the Texas or New Jersey state legislature, well…

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