Karen O’Rawe is popularly known throughout Ireland as a historical researcher who connects people with their ancestors, but recently she became involved in the push to legalize abortion in the pro-life nation.
Voted one of Ireland’s 20 Most Inspiring Women, O’Rawe talked about her abortion activism in a new interview with the Belfast Telegraph this week.
Ireland is facing global pressure from the United Nations and some of the world’s richest men to legalize abortion on demand by repealing its Eighth Amendment. The constitutional amendment protects unborn babies’ right to life and prohibits abortions except when the mother’s life is in jeopardy. Pro-lifers estimate the constitutional amendment has saved approximately 100,000 unborn babies’ lives from abortion in Ireland.
O’Rawe and other abortion activists are urging the Irish government to the repeal the Eighth Amendment, holding pro-abortion rallies and other campaigns to draw attention to the issue. The Belfast historian told the newspaper that she initially debated whether to become involved in the abortion debate.
“It took me weeks to decide to be part of the project,” she said. “I was angry because people weren’t standing up for women in horrific situations. And then I realised that I had a voice. I’m no longer willing to stand by, be quiet and watch women be vilified for wanting control of their own bodies.”
O’Rawe, who has two living children, said she had an abortion several years ago in another country.
“I am not ashamed to say I made a choice to terminate a pregnancy myself when I was in my 30s,” she said. “If I hadn’t made that choice, I would not be here to talk about it. Pro-choice is not pro-abortion. Pro-life does not have to be anti-choice. This issue is not black and white and therefore the law cannot be either. The more women able to stand up and be confident enough to talk about abortion, the less hidden this issue will be.”
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Her involvement in the pro-abortion movement became public after she participated in the X-ile photography project, which advocated for legalized abortion by sharing photos and stories of women who traveled outside of Ireland to have abortions, according to the report.
“After my photo went up on X-ile, I had many messages from women saying they had been through the same thing but hadn’t told anyone. If we can find the strength to stand together, I think that we can change the law in Northern Ireland – slowly but surely we’ll force our wee country into the 21st century,” O’Rawe continued.
O’Rawe also talked about her historical research during the interview and at one point described herself as having “a strong belief in equality for all.”
While some Irish citizens like O’Rawe are pressuring the country to legalize abortion, it appears that a lot of the pro-abortion movement’s money and influence are coming from outside Irish borders.
In August, a leaked document from George Soros’s Open Society Foundations confirmed that the American billionaire is using his fortune to push abortion on Ireland, Mexico and other pro-life countries, the Catholic News Agency reported.
In reference to Ireland, the document said, “With one of the most restrictive abortion laws in the world, a win there could impact other strongly Catholic countries in Europe, such as Poland, and provide much needed proof that change is possible, even in highly conservative places.”
In 2015, Life Institute reported another American billionaire named Chuck Feeney also gave about $18 million to Irish pro-abortion groups through his foundation. Bill Gates and the Ford Foundation also gave millions of dollars to the Centre for Reproductive Rights, which also is pushing abortion in Ireland, according to Life Institute.