On Saturday the 2nd of July, I will be attending the annual all Ireland rally for life in Dublin. Only this will not be the first time I will be attending the march. I attended the same event over ten years ago – at the pro-choice counter rally. Yes, like many people (mostly politicians) in this country, I too have “evolved” on this issue. I have gone on a journey also – only in reverse in comparison to everyone else.
Now to be clear, while I do regret campaigning for abortion, I cannot say I regret voting to repeal the 8th amendment. The constitution is not the place to deal with the issue of pregnancy or maternal care. It does need guidelines and a legal framework for medical professionals. In a world of cheap air travel and abortion pills, the 8th amendment was becoming redundant to what it was inserted for – to prevent the abortion of unborn Irish babies. Not to mention that it affected the care that women who did want their babies received. This should not be a legal football but a matter of conscience and truth.
As I’ve already written in other articles for this website, I was a staunch progressive in my formative years. That slowly began to change around my mid-twenties. One by one, the tenets of my leftist ideology began to fall like dominoes. Socialism, gay marriage/parenting, feminism, antipathy towards religion/traditional values. But even as I grew more conservative, the issue of abortion was the hardest Rubicon to cross.
This was probably because I had become so entrenched in my beliefs. I had attended pro – choice rallies, protested outside rogue pregnancy clinics, made pro – choice videos on YouTube and spoke openly about the issue, even to people in my conservative hometown in Tipperary. Once again, I saw it as a form of rebellion against my strict, Catholic surroundings. I still remember watching videos that showed aborted foetuses in fifth year religion class as part of a discussion on the topic. But so consumed with resentment and annoyance I just dismissed these distressing images as being irrelevant to the rights of a young girl/woman like me.
As a working-class woman, I clung to the fear that the pro-choice movement spouted. That if I made a mistake or had the misfortune of being raped, I would become pregnant. Be forced to either carry the pregnancy to term or scrape together the money to go abroad for a termination. My life would be over. That I didn’t have control over my own body in my own country. As a feminist, being pro – choice was an integral part of smashing the patriarchy.
So, imagine my horror when I came across groups such as Feminists for Life and New Wave Feminists. There was actually a feminist argument against abortion?! I began to read about first wave feminists (aka the suffragettes) such as Alice Paul, Susan B. Anthony, and Elizabeth Cady Stanton. These were women who had a much tougher time than I ever would. Disenfranchised, imprisoned, force fed, impoverished. Yet, they believed that abortion was the ultimate exploitation of women and that the only people it really liberated was irresponsible, dishonourable, and evil men who wanted to get rid of the evidence of their sins – rape, adultery, and promiscuity.
As much as I wanted to push back against admitting I had been wrong for so many years, the facts began to speak for themselves. That the abortion lobby on both sides of the Atlantic had roots in racism, eugenics, and population control through Margaret Sanger in Planned Parenthood and Marie Stopes in Marie Stopes International. This sinister genesis continues to this day with 80% of Planned Parenthood’s abortion clinics being within walking distance of minority neighbourhoods in the States. For me personally, it became untenable to dismiss Margaret Sanger as just one bigoted, mentally ill woman who didn’t speak for an entire movement.
Which brings me to this country. Isn’t it strange that after years of either ignoring the issue or pledging to keep abortion out of Ireland, the vast majority of politicians decided that a referendum should be held on the 8th amendment to the Irish Constitution and that the abortion laws should be liberalised. Did these legislators really “evolve” after talking to women who had travelled abroad for an abortion?
Or was it something more cynical? Was the pressure from our new masters in the EU to change our laws getting too much to bear? Did the housing crisis precipitate the need to curtail our growing population? Maybe the powers that be decided that the best way to reduce public spending was to have less people who needed it come into the world? This may come across as shocking conjecture to some but not entirely implausible if the history of abortion teaches us anything.
Unlike feminists on the pro – choice side who have become more extreme, even campaigning for abortion right up to the day of birth for any reason, just the principle alone. Feminists on the pro life offer practical, holistic remedies to what is yes, a very tough decision. They are the ones who really want abortion to be rare through affordable childcare, anti – pregnancy laws, easier fostering/adoption, traditional values and holding men to account for THEIR actions.
For years, we’ve been fed this line that it’s the religious right who wanted to hide away society’s dirty little secrets. That may have been true but something more monstrous has truly taken over. Realizing that there’s money to be made from modern permissive attitudes to sex and relationships through contraceptives and abortion, providers such as PP and MSI are using young girls and women to line their own pockets. Inflicting violence on their bodies, telling them it’s safe and clean, when it’s not. Women have died from legal abortions too. Ignoring the dangers of a potential perforated uterus and the psychological damage done to women who end up regretting their decision.
The evil, elitist scions of Sanger and Stopes have found a better way of disposing of our burdens – they’re killing them in their mother’s wombs, incinerating them as medical waste or harvesting their organs, and pushing the woman out the door, leaving her to carry the guilt for the rest of her life. While the man gets off scot free. Now you tell me. What’s so empowering about that?
Forget about the protection of innocent human life!!! Responsible government should propose not what can be done (in this case a moral evil), but rather, what should be done (maximum protection of innocent human life). Isn’t it bad enough that misguided Irish women, seeking an abortion, could easily take a ferry boat ride, of only some hours (we should pray that during which they might have a change of heart or of mind), to England, where there are doctors quite willing, for a price, legally to kill another “Paddy.”
Remember Cromwell’s justification for the killing of Irish children (see Seek the Fair Land by Walter Macken), “Nits make lice.”
If, as Tom Duffy said, “Our nationality is too precious to be left to the mere caprice of democracy,” then, ought not the lives of our children be regarded as all the more precious?
The Venerable Bishop Fulton J. Sheen, live, for all to see and hear, on his television show, “Life is Worth Living” (now available recorded) taught us: “Moral Principles do not depend on a majority vote. Wrong is wrong, even if everybody is wrong. Right is right, even if nobody is right.”
Monday, the 28th of May 2018, is a day that will live in infamy. On that day some 42 % of the 26-County Irish electorate voted to replace the previous constitutional protection of life of the unborn with a clause permitting legislation regulating the termination of pregnancy (38th Amendment, repealing the 8th Amendment).
Shame on all those who voted “Yes” for the change. Shame also on those 1,207,901 registered voters, who could not even care to bother voting on such a life-or-death issue, allowing a minority of the total electorate to democratically impose such an evil upon 26 of Ireland’s 32 counties.
Disgrace on the politicians who brought a moral evil forward to be left to the mere caprice of democracy.
In 1983 only 4 Dáil constituencies’ majorities voted against Life (all in Dublin/County Dublin), in 2018, it was 39 – with only Donegal for Life. The Protection of Life During Pregnancy Act 2013 has been replaced by the Health (Regulation of Termination of Pregnancy) Act 2018. Recent radio reports speak of penalties for health care professionals who refuse. Abortion services began on 1 January 2019.
The Little Johnny Bulls have finally gotten their “modern” secular state,
just like Mother England.
But nothing is so bad that it cannot get worse. In 2019, when the English sought to extend “legal” abortion over those occupied six of the divided Irish Province of Ulster’s nine counties known, by Act of the Westminster Parliament in December 1920, as “Northern Ireland”, they could have been prevented from doing so by the majority of the Northern Ireland Assembly (Stormont).
The Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) was, and still is, staunchly anti- abortion. But, what passes for “Sinn Féin” these days, chose to walk out, and to compound the felony, they were joined in their walk-out by the (allegedly nationalist) Social Democratic and Labor Party (SDLP), leaving only the minority, largely Protestant Loyalist, DUP to defend innocent human life – which, without the support of either one of the allegedly “Catholic” parties, they were mathematically unable to do.
Cromwell’s men are no longer required – disreputable Irish politicians have done the Devil’s work this time – there will be fewer nits making lice.
“Moral Principles do not depend on a majority vote. Wrong is wrong, even if everybody is wrong. Right is right, even if nobody is right.”
Sic transit Gloria mundi. All changed, changed again, changed utterly…
Adapting Yeats’ September 1913 analysis and reflection upon the death of John O’Leary, I recently heard it said, “Romantic Ireland’s dead and gone. It’s with Ó Brádaigh in the grave.”
Let us hope, and pray, that some future Joyce Kilmer (Easter Week) might find cause to contradict such an analysis.
Go saoradh Dia Éire!
Is mise, i Cairdis, Aontacht agus ar Críostaí Carthanachta,
Liam Ó Murchadha, Staraí
Bord Contae Westchester
Iar-Eagarthóir, National HIBERNIAN DIGEST Ord Ársa na nÉireannach i Merica (AOH)
Every word of your wonderful article is crystalline logic, a fresh blast of clean wind through these turgid times! I wish you were here in my country appearing on tv, speaking on this topic! Brilliant! Thank you.
Your upbringing was similar to mine back in 70’s and 80’s London: working class, legacy Irish RC.
Fundamentally, killing an unborn baby is barbaric. Cynically, the pro-unborn baby murder language is too.
Phrases like: ‘women’s right; women’s choice’. I thought the choice was already made?!
Also cynically, in the UK, young girls would become pregnant to get a council flat and with all the benefits and perks that come with the package and sobriquet of “Single Mum (parent)”. This inadvertently lead to multi-generational families and extended families on benefits. This was a pattern peculiar with second or third generation Jamaicans in London. This has spawned a lethal crime increase over the past 40 years.
Something to bear in mind.
Whilst we can show gratitude and thank the Author for the Article, and it spoke
volumes along with the comments with regards to “The Industry ” that has grown from the Abortion/Murder of Innocent Souls, it has made some very
GOD Loves a Sinner and as an Adult Mother she can appreciate the love and
compassion given to her, She got a Second Chance in Life and lives it.
DEAD, ABORTED BABIES get no second chance, nor the opportunity of
Love and Compassion, or the Luxury of telling ” Their Stories “.
” And Their Wailing Cries, They Shook The Very Heavens ” …a reminder to us
all that These Lost Souls are always heard and never forgotten.