For the first time in 20 years, a Saskatchewan city refused to fly a pro-life group’s flag outside its city hall this month.
The city of Prince Albert, Canada allows various groups to use its flag pole to raise awareness for their causes, including the pro-life group, a gay pride group and others. According to Prince Albert Right to Life, it has received permission to fly a flag during Celebrate Life Week in May for the past two decades.
But, as is happening with similar situations all across North America and Europe, abortion activists lobbied aggressively to silence the pro-life effort.
Knights Templar International reports city Mayor Greg Dionne initially said he would allow the pro-life group to fly its flag again this year.
The flag is purple and white with the image of the pro-life cartoon character Umbert the Unborn and the words “Celebrate Life Week” and “Please let me live.” Pro-lifers request permission to fly the flag every year in May for Celebrate Life Week in Canada.
However, abortion activists seem to have succeeded this year in pressuring the mayor to deny the pro-life group’s request.
Val Hettrick, past president of Prince Albert Right to Life, said Mayor Dionne recently told them that they must change the flag to something less divisive if they want to fly it, according to the report.
Here’s more from the report:
According to Hettrick, Dionne has provided three explanations for not flying the flag.
First, city council has discovered the Umbert flag is not a national flag but one put together by Prince Albert Right to Life. “He says, ‘It’s not national so we don’t have to fly it,’” said Hettrick. The city’s “flag protocol” does not require the flag to be that of a national organization.
Also, the image of Umbert is divisive, which is forbidden by the flag guidelines, because it will make women who have had abortions feel guilty. Finally, countering the argument that if City Hall has flown the Gay Pride flag for many years it should fly the pro-life flag, Dionne told Hettrick, “Homosexuality is legal.” The implication is that the homosexuality may be controversial, but it is legal. On the other hand, the pro-life flag is protesting something that is legal.
Last year, LifeNews reported abortion activists made a huge fuss about the flag and got some local media attention for it. Local abortion activist Lana Wilson urged the city to remove the pro-life flag and apologize for flying it. She and a small group of abortion activists also staged a protest.
They claimed that by flying the flag, the city was endorsing the pro-life position, CTV News reported last May.
Dorothy Kawul, a member of the Prince Albert Right to Life Association, previously said the flag is just one of the ways they help to raise awareness about crisis pregnancies, abortion and adoption.
“City hall is indicative of what the citizens are, and the citizens have requested that this week be proclaimed and the flag be raised,” Kawul said.
The situation is part of a growing trend among abortion activists to not just oppose but attempt to silence the pro-lifers. On college campuses especially, LifeNews has reported numerous incidents where pro-life groups have had their displays defaced and vandalized and their tables protested and blocked by abortion activists.
In April, a Students for Life club at Cal State University Dominguez Hills initially was not allowed to participate in a social justice fair on campus. The fair organizers later allowed the group to participate but set up the pro-life club’s table directly behind an abortion advocacy group’s display, Campus Reform reported.
And in March, a pro-life student club sought legal help after Kutztown University officials in Pennsylvania scrubbed their chalked pro-life messages from the campus sidewalks. The college permitted other groups to write chalk messages on the sidewalk.
In a separate incident in January, students filed a lawsuit against Queens College in New York after it denied their Students for Life club official recognition.