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Abort anti-abortionists 

Dear Saint Mary’s University,

To have to hear the news that my institution of higher learning allowed an anti-abortion guest speaker, Jojo Ruba, from the Canadian Centre for Bio-Ethical Reform, to speak Thursday, Feb. 5, further alienated me from the community of SMU. Some people, religions and institutions direct the hate in their lives towards women---I wish I wasn’t paying tuition to attend one of them.

The idea behind “freedom of speech” was not to give voice to those perpetuating hate against the ones battling for the right to exist. Rather, it was designed as a means of allowing those who go without to be heard.

Abortion is a last resort. Anyone who believes a woman would put herself through the emotional, physical and spiritual trauma rashly is kidding oneself. How can we justify the public having no place in a citizen’s bedroom, but still allow them a voice over a woman’s body? To have to acknowledge the ignorance of this speaker and those responsible for bringing him here is hard, but it is my opinion that Saint Mary’s needs to be held accountable for their lack of foresight and sensitivity.

I felt this as an attack as a student, woman, Canadian and human being. Not being from Nova Scotia, sometimes I try to justify the overly traditional sentiments this province and school display from time to time as representative of an age past; however, hate can no longer be justified by generational gaps.

You’ve hurt and embarrassed me, Saint Mary’s. I will give you one more year of my life. Then I will find an environment welcoming and aware of the hate I experience every day as a woman---an environment which chooses not to perpetuate the ignorance of bigots within its walls.

It’s incredibly unfortunate you didn’t see what you were doing to the men and women of your campus---the men and women who don’t feel that a woman’s body is in need of governance from the state.

---Pam Stewart, Halifax
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