On Wednesday, Ouellet told reporters he was "a bit surprised by the magnitude of the reaction" to his comments, which he said had been "twisted" and taken out of context.
"They took one small phrase and created a weapon … to discredit me," Ouellet said.
Ah ... the classic "I was taken out of context" defense. Coming from another one of Pope Benedict's cassock-wearing celibates, it's lacking credibility. Especially when he says this:
He called abortion a "moral disorder," but said the circumstances must be taken into account.
"I am not making a judgment on the woman ... because the woman has to take her decision in light of her personal circumstance," Ouellet said. "Only God knows all the elements of her final judgment of conscience.
Well ... he's got half of it right - the decision is the woman's. What he's got wrong is that he has any say in that decision.
In Belgium, with only rare exceptions, abortions are not performed later than 12 weeks into a pregnancy, Ouellet said.
As a result, he said, in 2007 there were 18,000 abortions in the country with a population of 10 million people, compared with more than 26,000 in Quebec, which has a population of eight million.
Of course, like most anti-abortionists, Ouellet is ignoring the fact that by far the majority of abortions in Canada (and Quebec in particular) are done in the first trimester.
More fundamentally, these clowns need to pay a little attention to the Morgentaler decision which found the last attempt at a law arbitrarily restricting abortion unconstitutional.
Since then, we've heard a lot of bleating about "fetal rights", which is nothing more than an attempt to invent a status for a being that is entirely dependent upon the woman until birth. Anyone with their brain switched on should be able to see just what a legal can of worms creating a legal status for a fetus would open. (Welcome back to the 'you're not a person' era, ladies - because suddenly your body is subject to the rights not just of your good judgment, but also of someone else's judgment on behalf of that fetus)