Recently we received a letter from Swift Current and District Pro Life notifying us that our names had been put on a “Pro Life Supporters Identification Index.” The index is used when members of Swift Current and District Pro Life meet with government officials. In other words, putting our names on their list was meant to support a political anti choice agenda.
The justification given by the Board of Directors of the Swift Current and District Pro Life for adding our names to their list is that they “believe there are a large number of people who make up a silent majority.” They explain that their actual numbers “do not amount to a whole lot of support” but they believe “there are many fellow Christians who support life at all stages who are not necessarily member of [their] pro life organization.” They wanted us to know that unless we contacted them to remove our names from their list, they would be counting us among their “life supporters when they were interacting with elected officials.”
It is our view that membership in an organization should involve a deliberate act to subscribe, not unsubscribe. We may furthermore have preferred to remain "silent" on this very personal and controversial issue. By having to contact the Swift Current and District Pro Life in order to have our names removed from their Pro Life Supporters Identification Index, they are compelling us to declare our position.
Only by chance did we found out that our names had been added by the Swift Current and District Pro Life to their “Pro Life Supporters Identification Index.” Usually we toss pro life mail into the trash bin unopened. Had we tossed this letter, our names would have been used fraudulently to inflate numbers to support an anti choice agenda on a political level. One cannot help but wonder how many others are unknowingly listed as members of a political lobby group that they do not support.
How did our names end up on this list? It appears that the Board of Directors of the Swift Current and District Pro Life received our names from a membership list from Christ the Redeemer Catholic Parish. Ron is a member of the Catholic Parish; Else Marie is not and has never been.
For all we know, such fraudulent practice – opting people in without their knowledge or consent – may be a common strategy used by pro life organizations. It follows that the numbers given out by such organizations cannot be trusted to represent reality.
Ron and Else Marie DePauw - Swift Current